Power conditioner and high end power cord


I am setting up my first system and need to understand if you have a good power conditioner (EQUI=CORE 1800) do you still need these high end AC power cables. The cable I got with the conditioner 6 feet looks very high end not sure how it's made. I have all my components (two -MC601mono blocks, C2600, MD550, MT10, two JL Audio E112 sub, and JL Audio CR-1) going into the EQUI=CORE 1800. If you switch all the components to a higher end AC cables is the sound any better. Or do you need just a high end power cord from the wall to the conditioner and use the cables to the components that they came with. Any help would be appreciated. 

gbprint6559
"If you switch all the components to a higher end AC cables is the sound any better."

That's probably the WORST question to ask on a cable forum.

How is ANYONE here,qualified to tell YOU, what subjectively sounds "better" to YOUR ears?


You've set the tread for contentious, biased and polarizing opinion that will only confuse you MORE!

That said, my $.02

There is the belief it's the first couple of feet that matters. So if you have your system plugged into a conditioner, the PC feeding the conditioner, should have a decent cable. But why would that matter, since the service into your place is miles of wire, which is then going thru questionable wire in your home?

YMMV
Borrow a cable, and let your ears tell you if it's worth the expen$e.

This may be of interest.
http://www.roger-russell.com/wire/wire.htm#introduction
The author is one of the handful of knowledgeable/qualified contributors here. 



I have always found that upgraded power cords improve the sound of each of my components. Some components more so than others.
This is the order of my preference:
Dac
Transport or CDP
Preamp
Amp
I'll also add that this subject is very controversial so once again the debate is on. My suggestion is to try one upgrade power cord on different components and be your own judge.
If you don't mind me asking who did you purchase the 1800 (a good balanced power unit) from and please describe the power cord it came with assuming there is no name on it.
@lak ,
+1, as usual.
@OP,
This is something you are going to have to try yourself.
If I were you, I would start with no conditioning and just plug everything into the wall or power strip.
Listen for at least a couple of weeks.
Then add a conditioner to one component and listen.
Then add a 'better' power cable and listen'
Etc.
or as they say:
Rinse and repeat.
B
gb,

The amps plugging into the 1800 may lessen some of the dynamics from the sound.  If this happens, try plugging those into an outlet rather than the 1800.  I've never liked the amp sound with a power conditioner because of that.  I do have 2 Core Power 150s.  One has the preamp going to it alone and it to on outlet.  The other has all my front end stuff plugged into a Synergistic Research QLS-6 power strip and it plugs into the CPT-150 which is then plugged into an outlet.  All my power cables are high end.  If you want to try your amps without plugging into the 1800, you will need 2 identical length power cables from the same maker.  I have 2 sets of WyWires Juice II PCs that I was using with my mono amps, but bought a pair of LessLoss Reference PCs this week that sound much better in all ways.

I will not be using the WyWires cables any longer if you're interested.  They are in the reasonably priced category for power cords.  The LLR are in the upper category price wise.  They are the same length and would give you a very good idea if putting your amps separate from the 1800 is good or a waste of time.  They were the equal of LessLoss Original PCs that I had at the time.  LL cords have been very well reviewed and are thought highly of at their price point.  Let me know if this interests you.

Bob
Every time i have upgrade a power cord the sound got better +1 Lak
Power cords have improved my system.....so too upgraded wall plugs, but not power conditioners.
@dorkwad +1,
I forgot to add-
All my amps go directly to the wall. Power conditioners often have less than positive effects on high demand equipment like amps. In this case use a better power cord.
@ stringreen +1,
Improved outlets (hospital grade) and a dedicated line, if possible, will give significant results.
B
@gdnrbob My experience is similar; while for lower draw amps there might be little downside to using a power conditioner,  a high draw amp will be choked by a power conditioner no matter the quality and irrespective of reviews claiming otherwise.  

Seperately, low gauge high quality PCs make a huge difference for high draw power amps.  But again, directly to the wall.
I repeat "it all depends"
I have amazed myself at suddenly I have found my mains supply is so rubbish. Not voltage variations but just contaminated and different at certain times of the day. I live in quite an upmarket town in UK so I do (did) not expect rubbish electricity!
An expert told me to try direct wall connection to amps (Bryston 7b3s into B&W800d3s) as with a conditioner (used by me for many years) there would be  a lot of transformers and activity introduced in the process. An engineer also repeatedly told me there was no difference in cables, so advice is free and expensive! The result, by removing conditioners yet still having so called hi end cables, was that the sound became hugely weak and tinny, no depth or substance. and very unlistenable. I tried for a few days as I couldn't believe it - and also as I had sold my conditioners I had little option! Talk about disappointment! Anyway I found some US terminal conditioners (my conditioners are made by Airlink in Harlow UK, just 2 miles from me) and put those in. Fantastic - all the Bryston depth and quality returned in spades. I have also inserted a power regenerator at the processing end and when it arrives, I will insert instead of the conditioners at the amp end to sort the quality of power issue out and compare to the conditioners etc etc. I have no personal energy remaining to change power cables before the conditioners or regenerator, - but will in due course have a bash when I psyche myself up for more tests. PS Audio recommend a quality power cable BEFORE their regenerator. The people I sold the 2 UK Airlink conditioners to, reported significant improvements, one more than the other though.
Sorry I can only help with half the question at this stage
Hi gbprint

Try to do away with plugs and sockets if you can except for the IEC. Use a dedicated mains consumer unit with individual flying lead mains spurs to the equipment. Use the best quality off the reel cable such as Acrolink. Or better use Sablon mains cables but more expensive. Use the best mains IEC plugs available such as the Furutech NCF plugs. Use Bybee Signal Enhancers or PPT Omega E mats strapped all around the consumer unit. Paint all the outside of all mains cables with PPT contact enhancer. Upgrade your BPT with a higher quality transformer for each spur.
It seems that the two posters before me should look more at the quality of their conditioners than comment at choking or whatever . Mine are high quality with PLENTY of headroom, and also I do not play at high volume with significant peaks of draw. So here you have a direct contradiction! It is all system and locality dependent, but in my case a "no brainer"
So you play your low powered system quietly. Good for you. For those with high power systems and are not listening to elevator music, then any power conditioner on the power amps is an issue.
Lol!!! You guys are funny!! 😂😂😂 
Looks like the thread is going along as expected...

gvprint6559-

I mentioned the PC into your conditioner, because I follow SOME of the Nordost philosophy, and that includes starting with power cords. Follow the signal with them. 

http://www.nordost.com/index.php




There is no "issue" providing peak demands by any "high power" system downstream from my TORUS RM-20 conditioner/surge protector so I'm never concerned about drops in line voltage or fluctuations in the delivery of current to my audio systems. There are many such issues with clean, continuous, uninterrupted power to my house and I assume the same issues apply to any household on a grid system.. 
I just upgraded my power cords from Tara Labs reference AC and Harmonic Technology Pro AC 11 to the Virtual Dynamics Revelation and Nite 2. Big improvement.
How can a power conditioner make a system sound SIGNIFICANTLY better?  I would like to hear the difference.  If you never heard a system through a power conditioner no one would ever notice.  Upgrade your speakers or CD player.
I would imagine it depends on the incoming power in your area and the power supplies of your equipment.  The power supply in my TRL DUDE is about as heavy duty as any amp, yet the sound improved very noticeably when I added a Core Power Tech Equi=Core150 PC and ran it directly to the Maestro wall outlet.  This is even though I was using at least a mid level power cord prior.  Surprised me how much difference it made on that one.  I have 3 dedicated 20 amp runs to the circuit box but it's not a separate panel from the rest of the house FYI.
I don't believe anyone would hear  "SIGNIFICANTLY" better sound reproduced from any "one" tweak in their audio system.  I do, however, receive more information through my speakers having added the TORUS RM-20 power conditioner, (two years ago) whether the source is from my TT or CD transport.  Simply more information.  One thing that should be determined in a forum such as this one is:  Does a tweak give you "better" sound or just "different" sound. A difference in the information you hear can be quantified, but is that difference actually "better" ?  I just added an Audioquest NRG-Z3 power cord from the TORUS to my amplifier.  This was added as a request from a retail audio boutique owner I've know for many years.  I use good quality cable for interconnects and I terminate these cables myself so I'm not one to purchase expensive cabling. HOWEVER... this Audioquest AC cable created a very discernable change in what I was hearing through my speakers and I'm still (after a week) not sure if the change is better than I was hearing before, but it's certainly different and I don't know why.  To be truthful, I didn't want to hear a difference.  I wanted to return this cable and get the refund promised if I wasn't convinced that it improved the sound. Now it's a conundrum ..
I thank you all for your input it was helpful and looks like I need to do some comparison. 
Someone  asked who I bought the core-1800 from it was a small company in Colorado I think his name was Mark. I bought it brand new it took a month plus to get it seems like a small family operations they where very good people to deal with because it to longer to make and ship they took $500 off the unit and I paid $1,200. 
@OP,
You are venturing into shark infested waters. 
Mark sold the company recently and many buyers (including myself) are owed merchandise.
I own 2 Equi-core 1800's and they work as they should, thankfully.

B
If you want to connect everything ina protected environment, just buy a big Torus. 
I connected my’tubed mono amps, pre and sources to my AVR16 with great benefit in sound quality. 
It came after the all passive Lessloss, Acoustic Revive and 2 Bybee conditionner.
Just be careful to over dimension a bit the transfo for the system. 
Better SQ and better protection. Sound the same any hour of the day.
Just my 2 cents
Some here make categorical statements implying that what they say or have experienced is always how it is for everybody. Not so! Example: Power amplifiers should never be plugged into a conditioner/regenerator because it will restrict dynamic response. Sometimes yes, sometimes no. A lot depends upon the amplifier’s design. In my particular case each transistor in my amp has a large value, quality capacitor right next to it. All those caps in aggregate store a lot of power to deliver the dynamics when they are there to be reproduced. A further advantage I have is running two powered subwoofers so the main amp is not called upon to power the deep bass notes.

I don’t doubt that there are amps who do not play well with power conditioning/regeneration, but some do. Each one of us has to know our components and how our systems respond under varying conditions.
I think your mileage will vary depending on your own situation. Your other home devices, your location, how well the power supply in your gear deals with the particular combination of noise, and voltages you have.

My favorite, cost effective solutions for this are the Furman with SMP and LiFT.

If you can afford power regenerators like PS Audio, even better.
The usual nonsense posts on here make you wonder if the whole process of advising people of experiences is a waste of time. 2 people without hearing what I hear have decried my experiences - "I don't believe"  words are ignorant and pointless, Please understand you cannot say such words UNLESS YOU HAVE THE SAME OR SIMILAR COMBINATION. Also one has interpreted my comments that I do not play music loud means that I listen softly as though I was listening to elevator music.  Crass and double crass. These naysayers really need to get a life and a better attitude.
A friend made a silver power cable that did wonders to his system, that killed mine soundwise. Some of that silver issue is to do with guage and my system needing a heavier guage, which DOES work better. Does anyone want to say "I don't believe you " again on that point too, without the slightest knowledge of what they are saying? Will trolls stop commenting on other posts where they have NO experience whatsoever. Please please.
A dedicated circuit and a good PC from it are better in my opinion than getting a pricy line conditioner. That’s the best first choice for line conditioning. 
A dedicated 30 amp circuit (10 guage wiring) costs less than expensive cords and works better than running these wires from a 15 or 20 amp circuit.  With this 30 amp circuit, power conditioners are moot.
A 30 amp circut breaker (even with 10 gauge wire) sounds dangerous to me.
@lak and that would be .... why?


There are definitely many others much better qualified than me to answer that question. I believe if my memory serves me correctly its been brought up in other threads on Audiogon and it was frowned upon. Hopefully, those other individuals will chime in here.
danvignau
A dedicated 30 amp circuit (10 guage wiring) costs less than expensive cords and works better than running these wires from a 15 or 20 amp circuit. With this 30 amp circuit, power conditioners are moot.
It isn’t exactly clear what’s being recommended here, but I disagree with it in any event.

First, it isn’t clear what’s meant by a "30 amp circuit." If we’re talking about the U.S., many local electrical codes - including that in my town - would require a 30A receptacle for that circuit. That would then necessitate putting new connectors on the ends of any equipment that would be plugged into that circuit, because a 30A receptacle isn’t compatible with a 15A or 20A plug. That’s a lot of work for something of little potential benefit.

A better solution would be to use 10 gauge wiring, but use a 20A breaker and 20A receptacle, resulting in a "de-rated" circuit. That would comply with both NEC and local code. I’ve done this with my system with great success. ( Some receptacles will not accept 10 gauge wire, but you can use a pigtail if that’s the case.)

However, using such dedicated, de-rated lines is no assurance that the power will be any cleaner than it is at the service panel itself. Under those conditions, there’s no question that a power conditioner can be of great benefit and - for the naysayers in our midst - it’s the sort of thing that can be shown with measurements.
I have a very similar system. Mac C46 pre, Mac mc501 mono blocks , JL audio C1 (really nice device) and a pair of JL audio E112 subs. I have 4 dedicated 20 amp circuits in my audio room and I have a noisy power source (I am on the Philadelphia pa power grid). I can tell you without any reservation that proper use of power conditioning and power cords makes a very big difference. I use a shunyata conditioner for pre-amp, Cr1 crossover and a Bryston DAC with very good results. High current amps are another matter. I plug them directly into wall outlets with shunyata Defenders in spare sockets. I have also been swapping power cords in and out of my system and have found amps most effected. High current cords are necessary to allow the amps to “breath”. The subs have seem not to be as sensitive to power souce and cable. This maybe due to the nature of the built in amps.

good luck
No one mentioned shunyata products, I have heard they are the best and beyond anything on earth.
A good power cord has measurable effects on the equipment to which its connected. This can result in more power (less voltage drop across the cord), lower distortion and lower output impedance if a power amp is using the power cord. So it should be no surprise that its effects can be heard.

I have found that most power conditioners are a disappointment. But not all- the best I've seen so far was not even offered to high end audio (its industrial/commercial), made by Elgar. Otherwise we recommend that our amps be plugged directly into the wall.

The Elgar conditioners outperform every other conditioner we've seen (Furman, PS Audio, etc.). It employs a massive isolation transformer with a feedback winding. A low distortion oscillator is synced to the AC line frequency and the output of the oscillator is compared to that of the conditioner. A feedback signal is thus generated and applied to the feedback winding. In this way the conditioner can keep the output sine wave very pure with a THD of less than 0.5% and it can also regulate line voltage without limiting current within its capacity. The two most common models do either 1000VA or 28 Amps continuous(!). The are also older as Elgar got out of the market a long time ago, but for the most part they can be refurbished.
For power products Manufacturers each have there own techniques and build quality. My experience is that no one company has the absolute answer to every issue. I use Shunyata, MIT , Furman and Pangea power cords from Audio Advisers. I am an engineer (embedded systems) looking for solutions to my power issues. At the end of the day it is the best sound at a reasonable expenditure that matters.



Power Delivery is one of the most Important and undervalued Components in your system.

The more Power you get to your system the better it will perform.
Better Imaging, Sound Stage, Detail etc.

Ideally one should look to invest 25-30% of their overall budget on Power delivery. There are ways around that figure if you are willing to do some homework, have patience and purchase through a used market. 

"If you switch all the components to a higher end AC cables is the sound any better"    YES

"do you need just a high end power cord from the wall to the conditioner
and use the cables to the components that they came with"

If you are on a Budget, as most people are, the best place to begin investing is in the Power Chord / AC Cable from the Wall to the Conditioner. Then just begin to switch out PC as you have the budget for them. 
IMHO the next Power Chord / AC Cable to invest in would be from the Conditioner to:
MCD Source/ CDP 
C2600 pre amp 
JL C-1
MC60 Monoblocks
JL Subs 
If you listen to a a lot of Vinyl and have invested in new cartilage then you probably want to get a good PC for your turntable around the same time as your CDP. If not let that be another project when you are ready.

The Cable Company is a good resource as they will allow you to audition cables from their library for a membership

https://www.thecableco.com/

Cable Companies to check out $$$$$ - $$$

http://www.stage3concepts.com/

http://www.highfidelitycables.com/products/power/ct1u/

http://www.hb-cable-design.com/1_english/horizonnk.html

http://www.oyaide.com/ENGLISH/AUDIO/products_category/power_cord/pg631.html

https://www.analysis-plus.com/product/home-audio/power-cables/power-oval-2/

There are many others, take your time and enjoy!

  So here’s my experience. I’m a Mid Fi guy and budget driven.               1 ). I installed Hubbell outlets . Easy and inexpensive. No SQ improvement noted . But my old outlets used a  push spring to attach the Romex . The Hubble’s have beefy screws and put a death grip on my power cords .                          2 ). I’ve tried no conditioner, a Monster , A Furman , and currently run a Richard Gray 600. No noticble SQ improvement. However when I added a Shunyata Venom HC 20 amp iec power cord , I could tell a definite improvement across the sonic range . Prior to that I tried a Pangea AC 14 with a 15 to 20 adapter . I lost bass , but gained in mid and treble compared to the stock power cord . Based on a partial improvement from a cord that was to light, I figured a decent high power cord would help and it did .                               3 ). I’ve tried the following power cords in 1 meter lengths. Pangea AC 14 SE MKII, Pangea AC 9, Silnote Poseidon, Analysis Plus Pro Power Oval , Signal Hi Fi Digital Power Ref , Morrow MP4.     4 ). My current arrangement is this. Morrow MP4’s on Pre and Power amp. Analysis Plus Pro Power Oval on Schiit Yiggy and Oppo 105. Signal Hi Fi on Musical Fidelity’s CD transport ( but will be switching to the Analysis Plus . Shunyata Venom HC 5 ft on Richard Gray power filter . Silnote Poseidon on subs directly to the outlets .                5 ). So in closing I have had good results with the Silnote Poseidon   ($100.) and heavy enough for high power amps with a 15 amp iec  , Analysis Plus ( $85. With promo code ) from guitar center, great for digital source and DAC, Shunyata Venom HC ( $175. ) , The Morrow MP4 at $700 for 2 with 10 day burn in . I also have a Pangea adapter to mate a 15 amp iec to a 20 amp component ( $25), and an adapter for mating a 15 amp iec to a standard plug ( for home burn in using a house appliance).               6 ). Finally this . My friend has Multiple systems and owns Bryston, Rogue , Modwright, and Parasound . He has dedicated 20 amp lines . He recently switched from a Furman to the Torus for his Rogue M-180’s, the gain was phenomenal. We were amazed that with tubes it could be that big . I could understand with big Brystons , but WOW !                     7 ). So this is my actual experience, not regurtated specs and theory. With my Pea Brain, limited vocabulary and penny sized budget , I hope I was of help . So to answer your question . Change your outlets , plug your subs into the wall . Try the Analysis Plus Pro on your source and DAC . Get some heavier cords for your amps. And the Torus is a BEAST ! Cheers , Mike B. 
I would say, set up your room acoustics long before you spend much money on power cables.

Keep noisy devices like routers, and cable TV boxes outside of your power conditioner.

Then invest in a pair of AC cables and see if it does a damn thing for you.
Used to run an office grade UPS and a furman rackrider. Taking them in or out of the system I was hard pressed to hear a difference.

I pulled both out and put in a regenerator.  Actual jaw dropping change the 1st day. Factory cords on all equipment. Since then I've become a believer.  

Topping it off I upgraded the PC between the wall and regenerator and that was a big change as well. 
If my memory serves correctly, the CPT 1800 units have their duplex outlets wired in a “daisy-chain” configuration rather than with “home run” wiring from the transformer. Check the latter posts in this CPT thread here:
https://forum.audiogon.com/discussions/has-anyone-tried-these-stunning-new-cpt-power-cord
Look for posts by grannyring and others. 

What’s the impact of current to each duplex outlet for the different wiring schemes from the transformer to the outlets? Daisy-chained outlets will provide full current to the first duplex out wired directly from the transformer, while all other duplex outlets serially wired downstream from the first duplex outlet will get less and less current as one goes to the other duplex outlets that are wired to the first duplex outlet. The last duplex outlet in the chain gets whatever scraps of current that the other outlets do not use.

So it matters what duplex outlet one uses for gear hookup. Not good. I’d use only really low current sourced gear for the stock CPT 1800. 

Home run wiring schemes have each duplex wired separately to the transformer in parallel, so each duplex draws identical current from the transformer. So it doesn’t matter what duplex outlet one uses for gear. 

Grannyring (and others) can give you tips on how to convert the daisy-chain wiring configuration to a home run wiring configuration. Some, if not all, of this info is listed in the above thread. 
And I totally ignored the affect of power cables in my post. Why? Because no matter what the cost, no power cable will restore the needed source current the duplex outlet failed to provide at the outset. 
I guess I am one of the "others" mentioned above.

I am using a CPT 1800 with the daisy chain, cheapo switch, and breaker eliminated.
I have found that my tube mono blocks sound better plugged into the CPT 1800 rather than directly to the wall outlet.
I also have 3 dedicated 10 gauge lines with Furutech NCF outlets in the 1800 and the wall. It all matters.
But I would say, (pun intended) it is only as good as the weakest link. Including the equipment.

ozzy
Ozzy: Yes, you contributed to that discussion, and more (+1, for pointing out my memory recall issues—or my laziness to review a lot of pages devoted to modding the CPT-1800 in that thread. 😂).
Electricity is the foundation of each system. But worldwide it is still done at a very limited level. These days it becomes more often to use a separate power group. But when we talk to manufacturers it becomes clear how little they do and know about electro-smog, magnetism, and high-frequency noise.

Beside this most conditioners are very limited in the end result. When you would understand how to test a conditioner on all different aspects/properties of sound. It becomes more than clear that most conditioners are not able to reveal all the different aspects/properties of sound. This means that they will create a limitation instead of an improvement.

You can get a superior level out of a power cable when you would use a conditioner what can reveal all the aspects/properties of sound. And when you would have done a lot to limit the influence of electro-smog, magnetism, and high-frequency noise.
I always figured that upgraded power cables were BS.... then I tried one.

My system is AudioResearch LS9 Pre / W4S Sx1000 monos / Maggie 1.7i / Gungnir Multibit / Sony ES5400 / Roon Nucleus / Kimber Kables

I just received an AQ NRG-Z3 1m cable and placed it on the preamp.
Holy shit! Thats all until further listening.... I don’t know what this magic is... but it sounds so good. :)


Any power cord will impact on the power supply of a given piece of equipment power supply reacts to it dues to the basic design of the cable and its inductance and so forth. In short, any cable is a crapshoot which is why you should try them in your system. There are companies that have been making cables for 30 years almost stick with them, in the past 10 years a lot of homebrew cables and part-time cable makers have hit the audiophile market, I sick with the pros with years and years of experience and know-how. 
I did not not know how good is my ps audio 300 power conditioner till I connected it to my Kimber Palladian, black background became blacker, instrument became more live and natural, bass has also improved ...