POWER CONDITIONERS FOR AUDIO QUALITY


Dear Members,

I need some advice on what power conditioner to get. I know there has been a lot of discussion over the years about power conditioning but I would like to know what is current, and specific to a system like mine.

I currently run a PS Audio Direct Stream DSD, BHK Preamp, Pass Labs x250.8 with Focal Utopia speakers and all Synergistic Research cables.

For filtering and protection, I was using a Monster HTPS 7000 - which appeared to benefit the sound quality of the PS Audio DSD and BHK Preamp but was taking away base from the Pass Labs Amp. I found that plugging the Amp directly into the wall however sounded better! – with greater soundstage and even greater imaging and definitely more base response.

Recently, I needed to move the HTPS 7000 to another system and am in the market to purchase hopefully a better conditioner to see if this system can sound even better than before.

When it comes to protection, both PS Audio and Pass Labs have advised me that they are not worried if their gear is plugged directly into the wall. So my main goal is to get clean power for best sound quality - serge protection being secondary.

 I am not sure how much I should spend and the pros and cons of the different name brands and models. I read good things about PS Audio Power regenerators and Furman, Synergistic Research, etc.

But would really appreciate some pertinent information and advice on power conditioning for my system.  

Thank you in advance,

Jack

 

Ag insider logo xs@2xjmarshak
I have enjoyed a PS Audio DirectStream DAC & transport for years now.  I used to have them (and my other components) plugged into a P10 power plant and took advantage of an upgrade to their new P15 unit, and immediately the performance of the DAC (as well as my Mytek Brooklyn DAC) was improved...better bass, more depth to the soundstage, greater clarity of voices and especially acoustic instruments.
So how does it sound with no filtering, any more dynamic, coherent, do you notice a higher noise floor?

Interesting ejr,

The PS Audio PowerPlant is definitely a consideration for me.  I thought that their model numbers (P10 or P15) mostly depicted how much component load the power regenerator can support - and did not realize that there could be such a drastic difference in sound.  PS Audio confirmed this  - thank you.

So wondering what are the competitors to PSA Power Regenerators


Yeti, In my case, when using Monster HTPS 7000, and not filtering the PS DAC and Preamp - Yes, it sounded like there was a higher noise floor. Music became less realistic and set back. Definitely a noticeable difference.
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@ebm   I don't see any conditioners on the Vibex site.
I have Directream tranport and dac into Furutech e-tp66 passive power strip, X250.8 into wall  (Furutech receptacle)
@jmarshak   I second @ejr1953 !  I have a P5 and run my entire system on it using only 32% of its power delivery capacity.  If you can swing the P15 that would be great.  Don't forget that PS has a trade-in program where you can get rid of older, unused gear and get credit toward new equipment.  Good Luck!

I looked at Vibex and its reviews and am honestly not sure about it.

@hifiman5 , I definitely have PSA on my radar from power regeneration. Thank you, this stuff is great. Are you happy with the P5? Have you had a chance to compare to any other conditioner/regenerator?

@jl35 Interesting. Sounds like you have a similar gear set up to mine. Have you compared the Furutech to anything else or running without it?

replaced a $2400 Audience with it.   Amp always plugged into wall.
I used to own a Monster HTPS7000 Signature years ago.IT is definitely inferior to PS Audio and Furman.I still own a Monster 5000 sitting in the closet for 'emergencies?"Anyway, I have used a Furman REF 20 for eight years, and a PS Audio p-600 for about seven years. If I was in the market for a new something I would buy the AudioQuest 7000...           
or the PS Audio P20               
There ARE NO OTHER to consider. Except the AQ 5000 or the PS Audio P10 or P15 for budget constrained folks.
if you can find a used Running Springs Dimitri or Jaco those are two very good conditioners. I have heard the Kubala Sonsa power conditioner is awesome
Watch this video for Isotek Aquarius. It impressed the heck out of me!

https://www.upscaleaudio.com/products/isotek-evo3-aquarius
I'm one of those budget constrained folks and had to settle for a Bryston Bit 20.  Works for me.  
I USE An AUDIO POWER INDUSTRIES 116-NO LONGER MADE but they were/are very well made and get the job done. Even the Power wedge model (a very heavy power "strip") is also very well constructed. 
Some say don't use them on big amplifiers. So I don't. I'm old-school on power conditioners since I don't live where I don't live in a building with a lot of people on their computers, etc. Anything by "Monster" is junk-
I had a unit that completely stopped working behind my TV and just gave it away. Google confirmed I was not alone- everyone that bought that power strip had to replace it. It had pretty colored lighs though.
Thanks to all for sharing your experiences, the information and the advise. It is much appreciated!

I read a bunch of reviews over night and decided to purchase and try the Synergistic Research Powercell 6 with Tesla active power cord. Mainly (because these fit my budget constraints but also) because I love everything that Synergistic makes and all my cables are from Synergistic. The Powercell is arriving today :) !

I am happy to report my results if anyone is interested.

Happy Holidays To All!.

Has any body used anything by Synergistic Research power cell ?
I definitely would be interested in what you thought of the Powercell 6.
Jack - 

I am running my PS PWT, DAC, Nu-Wave, Pass Pre & Pass amp and Shiit Asgard II headphone amp from a PS P10 regenerator  ( I have my Marantz SR7011 for A/V on there too ! ) . 
I would have bought a P15 or 20 , but the gent I bought it from was getting a P20 and made me a deal I couldn't refuse and his was only 4 months old ! 
It is an exceptional product from an amazing company and I did a LOT of "homework" before I made the decision. What sold me was the P10's ability to easily handle the the crazy high current demands of the Pass amp during certain music passages and the overall quality of the varied music no matter the input source/type. Line conditioners just don't do the job !  I'm powering B&W 802D2's and looking at Focal Kanta 2's . 
It is my opinion that you would be wonderfully pleased at getting a used P10 or a new P15/P20 for your system. 

Happy listening ! 

Shad 
Well, I know I won’t rest until I try one of the PS Audio Regenerators, but Synergistic Research Tesla Powercell 6 is now installed in the system (fast :) - I got it locally.

When the system was still warming up, I wanted to hear it for a bit and it sounded pretty good. Somewhat lean but with a lot of new detail, more detail than the Monster HTPS for sure, and definitely already cleaner sounding then without any conditioning. The Tesla powercells come with Active Synergistic Research cable so blends well the rest of my system. Perhaps that’s why it was cleaner (lower noise floor) right away.

I plugged the amp into the powercell also - so three components in separate zones (DAC, Pre, and Amp). I was interested and concerned how the bass response and soundstage would be when all reached equilibrium.

So, after about 1.5 hours of warm up, I am listening again...Excellent! Soundstage is huge and Bass is very good, yet controlled. I think it sounds better then plugging the AMP directly into the wall (which was a slight safety concern for me before).

Overall, I feel happy with, my decision to get the SR Tesla Powercell. The price was much cheaper then the regenerators, and so far, nothing is lacking sonically for me.

Thanks all again for your recommendation!
If I can provide anymore information, please feel free to reach out to me directly.

Happy Holidays and Happy Listening!
Jack