I have been evaluating new ICs.
Anyways, I forgot that my main power cord (same pc loom across my components) normally used to power the Pass XA-30.8 was being used with a recently arrived integrated amp.
To keep the Pass amp energized, I was using another power cord, which remained in --- as I moved to evaluate the ICs with the Pass amp (instead of the integrated). I realized this after a few days of IC evaluation with the Pass amp.
Once I swapped in the ’main’ power cord to the Pass amp, the sound signature of the system (and with the new ICs) changed and importantly (to me) the TIMING of the music across genres and recordings improved noticeably and markedly.
[I submit that shifts in timing are usually subtle (or small if you may) but the impact/result, when correct, is significant.]
I’d like to learn from this, especially in terms of power cords.
For those of you who have experience in this area, and have experienced the same, can you elaborate on your findings and help with any other pertinent details? Thank you.
Speed is probably more a function of clarity on the leading edges of sounds (or said another way higher bandwidth)
Hence adding a superior power cord that renders the leading edges of percussion for example will manifest as improved timing. That’s certainly been my experience and the current range of AudioQuest power cords are exemplary in this regard
Folk freak +1 with Audioquest very few cables can go near their tonal balance...
Well, I certainly think that power cords that are controlled for wire directionality, you know, like the new Audioquest lineup, including Hurricane, will exhibit superior timing, pitch control, tonality, things of that nature.
@folkfreak Does the same apply to the trailing edge?
@jayctoy Do you find / feel that 'tonal balance' and timing are related/connected? How so?
@folkfreak @jayctoy @geoffkait Thank you.
Yes! Something else I discovered about power cords after having several $3k to $4500 PC’s...sometimes the best mate is free. After trying all my expensive PC’s on my Krell am I used a free cord I received from my dealer just to experiment. It was a Sony TV power cord with a small circuit or magnet at the end with silver terminations. Man o man, what a freaking great match!! Everything about my sound snapped into focus. Detailed deep taught bass, luscious midrange and a detailed high end with tremendous sounddstaging as well. Simply amazing what you can find sometimes.
Yes, just as true of the trailing edge. You will need a room that is clear of excessive reflections as this will blur the effect that these sorts of improvements make. In a less optimized system you may get much less impact
@dave_b Very interesting and what a great story/lesson.
@randy-11 Thank you for the link. I'm aware of archimago's work.
@folkfreak I got very lucky with my room. It does need some treatment which will happen in the near future. At my normal listening levels the room is not a factor, and is surprisingly well balanced per my preferences.
David my guest timing is more connected to speed and transient, tonal balance my guest is not connected to timing but it might help though.
I made the same mistake once again, but remembered I had forgotten to swap out the power cord from the Lyric Audio Ti 140 MkII to the Pass XA-30.8 much sooner this time.
On this occasion, I also had the good fortune of having a fellow audiophile and friend on hand evaluating Single Ended IC cables (for the Lyric amp) with me.
The differences between the two cables were clear and our preference for my normally used cable was clear as day. Since both of us were ’critically evaluating’ the system, the differences we picked up on went far beyond just an improvement in timing.
(In case the question comes up...the power cables were powering the Pass XA-30.8 via a PI Audio UberBUSS....and were Audio Art and Triode Wire Labs)
Keep experimenting and writing- david_ten
I’m pretty sure wire directionality plays a big role in the sound of power cords just like any other cable. Which is why the latest Audioquest power cords are controlled for directionality.
@geoffkait Geoff, I thought power cords were directional by design. Are you referring to something more specific or technical?
I’m actually referring to the wire itself which, in the case of power cords, is thin stranded wire. When I speak of directionality I am almost always referring to the metal conductor, not the plugs or the shielding. If a cable has shielding that’s directional then there are two types of directionality involved. The shield and the metal conductor. When I say Audioquest controls directionality of their cables and power cords I’m referring to controlling the direction of the conductors during the manufacturing process rather than having it be random.
@geoffkait Thanks for clarifying. I'll look into what Audioquest is doing to get educated on this.
Do you diy David? If so, try to make up some safe(!) powercords from +/-12awg solid core. About timimg, a well known trick in my area is to test the powercords polarity vs other components powercord, this can be heard specially in 3d and bass-timing. (50-60hz ac..)
Powercords should never be plugged into an extensoin-cable but directly into the wall. If not possible then make up an extension from solid core, like this:https://www.ebay.com/itm/ComTran-34888-14-2C-Solid-Shielded-Plenum-Fire-Alarm-Cable-Red-FPLP-CL3P-10...