Power conditioner for amps

I recently picked up an Adcom ACE-515 (power conditioner with timed switching for pre/source and amp products) from a fellow Audiogon member, and while it seems to work fine, I have noticed that it tends to get quite hot and will trip the circuit breaker if I run my system fairly loud for any period of time (which I do like to do on occasion). For the record, the amps that I am running through this are two GFA-555II's (bridged mono) and a GFA-2535 (which is really two GFA-535's in one chassis).

My concern is that I am running too many amps through the ACE-515. So, I called my dealer about possibly upgrading to a larger unit. But his advice was that I should be running my amps straight out of the wall outlet, and not through any type of conditioner. He said that the ACE-515 was great to use on source and preamp gear, but that it would limit the current getting to my amps and that they would sound better with nothing between them and the wall outlet. I asked him what about spikes, surges, etc. His reply was that amps are not as susceptible to damage from such things, and that I shouldn't worry about it.

What are y'alls thoughts on this topic? Should I just plug my amps straight into the outlet, or should I get a larger power conditioner? I do like the staggered power on, power off that the ACE-515 provides.

Well Tom I'am using a Adcom 585LE thru a power conditioner.I have no problems with a lack of power.It doesn't seem to constrict anything.Even when running the maggies hard this amp is no warmer than it is at idle. I also like the staggered on and off switch. All I can say is plug them up and see.I noticed in my house I got a bad ground loop hum with several high current amps plugged up at the same time. If it doesn't work for you buy the conditioner.Or if you can put in some dedicated outlets for those amps.

Happy Listening!

What kind of power conditioner are you using?

Dedicated 20A circuits w/ whole house surge protection is a route to consider. That way, your amps drink from their own source, and surges and spikes (should they be a worry to you) can be dealt with at the service panel.

Another possible solution is to run a High Current PS Audio Ultimate Outlet. This will deliver all the AC available from the circuit it is attached to without limiting cuurent to your amps.

Good idea about the dedicated circuit and whole house surge. I had been thinking about that for a while. I have not heard of the PS Audio Ultimate Outlet. I will have to look into that.

Thanks, Tom.
If you have dedicateds run, try to have as many installed as you think you might need down the road. It's cheaper by a long shot to have them all done at once, rather than have the electrician come back because you need 1 or 2 more. If you have the whole-house surge done at the same time, it will only add about 200.00 to the bill. It's money well spent IMHO. I actually use both my previous suggestions to you. I have a high current UO for my mono amps on a dedicated line, and another standard UO for my source components on a line, and the surge issues being dealt with at the service panel.
Tom I use a Monster Power HTS 2600.It has the staggered switching like the one your using.I would like to get the AVS 2000,which keeps the currrent steady at 120 volts.I've heard these do wonders for systems.Since nothing is starved of power the equipment can draw what it needs .
My advise is to use the power conditioner. I have never heard of it starving power to the amps. I use the same adcom in one of my set ups with 4 amps coming out of it. I used a cheaper surge protecter and plugged it into one of the adcoms outlets and then the 4 amps into the surge protector, never runs hot at all. I suspect you might have a problem with the conditoner.


That would have been my thought. Tell me, does your ACE-515 get hot? Mine really does, and it gets hotter than my amps do. I am trying to contact Adcom, but they don't seem to answer their e-mails.

I think your dealer's point is that he feels conditioners limit the power to the amp. Many can (depends). Do you notice any difference, that is what is important. If so, I think you may want to look at something with a parallel line conditioner, where they don't limit the power. You may want to check the Vans Evers line out, I think they utilize a parallel conditioner but also have surge protection, etc.

The answer to your question of the Adcom getting hot is no, it does not get that hot at all. Something is wring with yours. Call them, you can get the # from their web site and ask for tech. support, they are very helpful.

I have a high current UO for my mono amps on a dedicated line, and another standard UO for my source components on a line, and the surge issues being dealt with at the service panel.

Excellent advice! I have consulted with my electrician, and with a little playing around, I am able to come up with two free 20 amp circuits to use for my home audio system. I am now going to order two UO's. Any thoughts on where to get them from? Also, what brand/type whole house surge unit did you use?

Thanks, Tom.
That was my response to your thread. The PS Audio Ultimate Outlets are readily available from a number of online retailers new, but, in an effort to support the sellers here at the 'GoN, there are always both high current and standard versions for sale here at very reasonable prices. Good luck!
Make sure you can return the UOs if you don't like them. I bought a 20A one from Audio Advisor a while back and returned it because it limited the dynamics of my Rowland Model 10. The Rowland sounds best plugged directly into the wall.

Sorry for not crediting you with that quote. I did know it was you. And thanks again for the good advice! Also, great point about sticking with Audiogon sellers. This is, indeed, a great resource, and I'd like to see its supporters continue to thrive.


Good point about finding a dealer with a return policy. From what I have read about the UO's, it seems very strange that they would have a detrimental effect upon your system. Any idea what it was about the UO that caused the dynamics issue?

Later, Tom.
Just curious if you folks using Ultimate Outlets also used PS Audio Power Ports, or if regular old receptacles would do the trick. Also, I obviously want the high current for my amps, but I am not sure if I should get the 15 amp or the 20 amp. Is there any downside to the 20 amp? Is there any downside to using a high current UO for source/preamp gear?

One last dilemma that I face is that I have four amps to plug in. If I use one dedicated line for the amps, I still only have two outlets. Do you recommend that I wire in a second outlet on that circuit, or should I use a juice bar or some other kind of multiple outlet box after the UO?

I intend on continuing to use the Adcome ACE-515 on the front end (though I still need to get that overheating issue addressed).

Sorry for all the questions. You people have been a great resource!

Thanks, Tom.
If you intend to use the high current UO, it includes a power port. If you want an aftermarket PC on it, make sure it uses a 20A connector as the HC 20A version has that type of inlet on it. The Juice Bar has 3 Power Ports and you can use an aftermarket cord to the line. Any combination of the above are good, but, IMHO trying to feed 4 amps on one 20A line regardless of the combination may wind up limiting your available current to ALL your amps, with or without a UO in the chain. If it were me, I would think about splitting the amps across TWO 20A lines, with a UO or Juice Bar for each. If you are not concerned about spikes and surges on the line, two Juice Bars will cost 400.00 MSRP and you will have 3 Power Ports on each, no current limiting and plenty of juice to your amps. Same for UO's except you'll wind up with 1 Power Port on each. If you go the Juice Bar route, you'll have extra $$ left over for an Ultimate Outlet that you COULD plug into a regular circuit and run your sources from, saving the dedicateds for your amps. If you do that, try and keep lights, motors and fans off that circuit. Just food for thought....
Not a bad idea, Slipknot. With any luck, I will be able to install two new 20A lines, in addition to the shared circuit that is already there. Between these three circuits, I should be able to adequately divvy everything up. It sounds like I will want to get one or two high current UO's, and at least one Juice Bar. After talking to customer support from PS Audio, I will probably be pulling the ACE-515 from my audio system entirely. Now, my only problem will be remote on/off control, since in my setup, the Juice Bar(s) will probably be at the back of my cabinet, and not easily accessable. One option may be to see if my electrician can build me two "Juice Bar-like" boxes, with remote on/off switches for each. I would think that if he uses quality components (probably Power Ports), star-wired, with good attention to detail on the construction side, I should be able to get a decent product.

My one remaining question would be whether or not I need a Power Port or two on the wall, or if decent quality receptacles would be adequate.

Thanks again, Tom.
My favorite outlets have been those supplied for us by AudiogoN member Albert Porter. His "Porter Ports" are cryo version Hubbells. Albert is one of the most well-informed and helpful folks around. On a couple of occassions, he has arranged a group purchase for members. I don't know if he has any extras available from the last round. You may want to contact him privately and inquire. They are the best outlet I personally have ever used. Some folks have even swapped out the PS Power Ports in their Ultimate Outlets for Albert's "Porter Ports".
Sounds promising. I will look Albert up.

Thanks again, Tom.
Well, after talking extensively with my local dealer and with Albert Porter, I am going to pick up three UO's (two regular and one 20 amp high current) for my three circuits (two dedicated) that will power my stereo/HT system. On the two regular UO's, I will be installing Porter Ports. I will also throw Porter Ports on the wall outlets for all three circuits, and I am picking up an extra one to use when I add a powered sub. Instead of a Juice Bar, I am going to have an electrician friend of mine build me two double gang breakout boxes (using Porter Ports, of course!). So, that's a total of 10 Porter Ports! Based upon all the glowing reviews by AudiogoN members, I decided they were worth investing in. Now, my only issue remains turning everything on and off with one or two switches. My electrician has recommended that I use wall switches to turn off my dedicated circuits (one for preamp/source and one for amps), which may actually be a killer idea.

Thanks for all the input, especially from Slipknot!

Take care, Tom.
Hi guys- Just my two cents. Victor Khomenko, the head BATman at BAT, in addition to most other high-end amplifier designers, states that "a single dedicated power circuit will usually produce the best result". As far as our systems go, any difference in ground potential (due to multiple circuits, conditioners, etc.) is seen as a signal, which will amplified, and added, to the real signal. Our ears should be the best test but a good high-resolution system will almost always prove the BATman right.
Instead of wall switches, look at using some sort of low voltage relay system. If I was using a big power amp which required a lot of juice, I would not want it's voltage having to pass through a wall switch. You are using Power Ports to maximize current to your equipment, so maximize connectivity and not use a wall switch where you constantly break on the high voltage side. I would go for a low voltage relay system rather than physically breaking the high voltage line. This would be a system similar to what you find with how car amps are turned off and on.
The "Albert Porter" cryoed outlets are outstanding and, IMHO, the best available. Albert is now offering these in the "tweaks" classified section. Very highly recommended and much better than the PS outlets, IMO. Cheaper, too.
Did any of you folks check out the article by Art Dudley in the November issue of Stereophile wherein he compares the merits of the PS Audio Power Ports to a "run of the mill" receptacle (in this case the Eagle 426)? He appears to start off as a skeptic, but finds audible and consistent benefits to the Power Port. The Hubbell 8300 does get a brief mention, though there is no head to head against it and the Power Port (which is made by Hubbell).

Also, FWIW, I had fellow AudiogoNer Ernie Meunier make me up some 4-way boxes (without receptacles) with in-line switches to solve my switching dilemma. I am going to install Porter Ports in the boxes, and I have already swapped out the standard receptacles in my (non-high current) Ultimate Outlets with Porter Ports. The two new dedicated lines have yet to be installed, but I will report back once everything is up and running.

You should try the Running Springs Audio Hailey or Duke2 if you're running a massive amplifier or also works the Shunyata Hydra 4 or Hydra 6.

They will absolutely not limt the dynamis and the quality of the filtration will be very revealing if you have not used filters before and if you have, this will change your mind about filtering power for other components . .\
\Hope it helps;

God Bless;