Power cords and soundstage


So I made a couple of changes in my system yesterday. I've acquired new power cords, and replaced/rearranged the power cords for two of the amps.

By the way I consider myself as semi-skeptic and semi-believer of good cables. I've heard subtle difference and improvement on some of the cables. But in most cases either I can't reliably tell which is which, or if I can tell the difference it is very small. I don't own exotic cables. Some of the brands I own include Audioquest, Kimber, Analysis Plus, and a few home-brewed, but well received power cords.

When I changed the power cords yesterday I heard immediate, and distinct difference. I can't say whether I like or dislike the changes yet, but the change is unmistakable.

Even my wife, who is music enthusiast but indifferent when it comes to the system change, commented today and said she thought the center speaker is "too strong". I've then explained that there is no sound coming out from the center speaker with the CD that she was listening.

Some of the differences that I've heard with the new power cords are the following:

Bass: Immediately I heard and felt that the amount of bass from the main speakers were smaller. It is definitely less boomy, and became tighter. I'm afraid the bass doesn't extend as low as before. So I've gained some and lost some.

Focus: focus, soundstage, whatever you call it, has tightened up as well. The bright side of it is now the speakers have completely disappeared. However it doesn't sound as extended from left to right as before. And as my wife noticed the sound is seemingly coming out from the center speaker, although the center speaker is off. No, I didn't hit dolby pro logic button by mistake. The only speakers that are producing any SPL are left and right speakers. The instrument location is still clearly defined, but overall left right soundstage is now much smaller. Here again, I've gained some and lost some.

Depth: This is one area that clearly was improved. It may sound like a cliche, but the noise floor seemed to have decreased, there is more micro dynamics, and it sounds deeper.

Now I'm more confused than ever, and I'm questioning my sanity..
jylee
The irony is that you can swap your new power cords with another brand/model, and your findings will change 180 degrees in each category...then, one or two cords will be just about right in every category (and no one can tell you which cords these will be due to elusive and mysterious system synergy).

The good news is that with some experimentation you'll find cords that shine in your system and fulfill it's potential.

Welcome to the power cord jungle.
Did you AB the power cords to isolate which cord made the most difference on a component?
It is jungle indeed, Tvad. Please show me the way out. :)

Pierre, I haven't done any AB testing yet. One thing I might want to add is the only other time I was able to hear the difference in the power cords was on the digital front end, and that power cord was from the same vendor.
Listening and experimentation is the way out.
Jylee, FWIW, I share your lack of enthusiasm for wandering around in a jungle, especially after dark. A couple of things to consider, apart from the underlying question about whether or not PC's really make a substantial (as opposed to nominal) difference. I won't go there. But, if they do, I would argue that either you are a super anal audiophile with highly resolving equipment or you might just have yielded to the power of suggestion. :-)

Just for fun, analize what 'might' cause the changes you are hearing in your system and whether they can be related to what a different PC might do. For example: 1) You feel that your system now has a more focused center image, that the speakers have 'disappeared'; 2) Bass was less boomy; 3) there is less bass (but tighter); and 4) the apparent stage width has lessened, but the depth of image has increased.

When I look at 1) thru 4) I find a common denominator, i.e. going from a 'sound' with a lot of added (out of phase) information not inherrent in recordings, to a system without, for lack of a better description, a lot of added out of phase information. Your description of your present sonics is a description I personally feel is the more correct one.

Faced with that possibility, I really don't understand how the difference in PC's ability to deliver current would affect phase issues created by electronics or component set up. But sudio systems are a mystery some times.

For example, this weekend I made a change in my system which amounted to only removing/changing a source, but it was involved and required a lot of shifting and moving of things. I did not change amps, pre-amps, PC's, IC's, or speaker cables. But, I am confident that what ever I did, perhaps only in relocating/routing equipment and wires, that the repositioning of the IC's and PC's made a difference. A fuller upper bass/low mid range.

Go figure. But don't be self judgmental. :-)
I really don't understand how the difference in PC's ability to deliver current would affect phase issues created by electronics or component set up.

Newbee (System | Reviews | Threads | Answers)
I can't begin to understand it either, but I've heard the effects. Whether it's a phase shift, I don't know, but it has certainly sounded like a phase shift.
If you only changed out and rearranged the two power cords you shouldn't be that confused. If however, you changed out other things you have reason to be confused. Only make one change at at time!

Power cords do make changes in soundstaging, so I'm not surprised by your findings. Give your new setup more listening time, sometimes things begin to sound better, sometimes not. Don't make snap decisions unless things are totally bad.
Last year I had the electrican rewire my system to a 20 amp dedicated ground with hospital grade outlets. Since than the several different pc's that I was switching in & out don't seem to make a big difference, if any, they did before the new service line. At least in my system the new 120 a/c outlet must have cleaned up some evils. GG
FWIW I do have a 20A dedicated line drawn from the main panel for my audio gears.
Jylee, I think you should hold off your judgement till the PCs break-in. Sound WILL change. May be for better. May be not. Pl report back the resulting sound as compared to your first impressions. Around 50 hours- 70 hrs should do it.
Cable can make a little bit of difference, however many people will tell you that initially this is only because there is a cleaner electrical connection, and that this seeming difference then disappears after a time. Alot of people waste alot of money changing cables out frequently, when often all they need to do is clean their connections every six months or so to achieve the same results.
PC's that I have used make a difference....usually in the depth and width of the soundstage. Also improving the spatial quality of the sound. Most new cables need 100 hours to settle in....my experience.
09-17-08: Tvad

I really don't understand how the difference in PC's ability to deliver current would affect phase issues created by electronics or component set up.

Newbee (System | Reviews | Threads | Answers)
I can't begin to understand it either, but I've heard the effects. Whether it's a phase shift, I don't know, but it has certainly sounded like a phase shift.."

-------------------------

Phase might be the main answer as we talk of AC. My experience is that just by turning phase on the PC the "wrong" wsy both soundstage and bass weight suffers. This can easily be checked with a ohm-meter in both ends of the PC to see if it turns the phases.

Powercords can do alot more than most folks imagine. The powersupply/trafo breathes through the PC..
As in any place of the power-circuit there`s a lot of loss in stranded wires, both distortion and lack of powercapasity. Obviously a point with huge amps, but it has the same effect on other components. To reduce loss PC`s should be kept as short as possible, no extensions.

And while we talk about current; pull out every mobilephone-charger, halogen-lights or any other small trafos while listening, those cheap little trafos makes a lot of noice!
Newbee, HUH? You said, "this weekend I made a change in my system which amounted to only removing/changing a source..." and you seem surprised that the sound was different. ONLY a source change? You talk as though swapping the source won't effect anything, and you're surprised that the cables sound different?

Changing the source is a potentially HUGE factor in changing the sound. Take cdp's, from one to the next there can be a big difference in presentation. It wasn't your cables which made the difference, if in fact you swapped sources, but the new source itself! Now, if you moved cables around and put them in new locations and kept the same source, there also could be a difference audible. But the way you stated it makes it sound like you dismiss the effect a different source has on the rig.

If you think different sources don't do much then it's no wonder you struggle with the idea that a cable can make a difference!
09-19-08: Palerider
Tvad

I really don't understand how the difference in PC's ability to deliver current would affect phase issues created by electronics or component set up.
I did not say the power cord change was causing a phase shift. What I wrote was that the change in sound I have heard in the past as a result of changing a power cord was similar to the sound of a phase shift.
Douglas, I think you misunderstand my post and what I was trying to accomplish, and read far to much into my statement about a personal experience in component/system adjustments. Different sources make a profound difference in systems as do different pre-amps, amps, and speakers, and in my case tube selection as well. The sonic possibilities of the many different combinations seem infinite. Sometimes it is sort of like a mule standing equal distance between multiple haystacks.

FWIW I have multiple sources (listed in my systems), including 3 digital sources, none of which have changed. I also have multiple amps that I combine with different sources for different sonic resons dependent on the musical experience I want to enjoy. What did change was my FM tuner, I replaced it with a different Tuner and an FM signal amplifier, and removed a CD Transport/Dac not listed in systems, along with a selector 'box' connecting the two to my system's preamp. In order to do this I had to move about other components which required some IC disconnections and subsequent reconnections (same IC's to thesame components. Same PC's to the same components. No changes. When I was done I 'thought' I detected a sonic change in my system that bridged all sources, so I must assume it was sourced to my amp or pre amp, and consisted of some increase in upper bass energy. And I assumed that it could have been due to IC/Cable/PC dressing. If there was in fact an increase or if it was just my imagination at work was not an issue for me as I found the change agreeable. It was a subtle, not a night and day, or live or die, experience.

BTW, I don't think I struggle much with the idea that wiring and its implementation CAN make a difference. However, when I decide to dedicate time changing my basic system's performance, I find I enjoy fine tuning and finding synergy thru tube rolling. You want to tune thru cables, PC's, and IC's that is fine with me. I've long ago investigated wiring and decided on IC's, PC's and Speaker cables appropriate to my my needs.

The original poster's observations of the differences in his system, before and after the insertion of a new PC, were IMHO, classically, the description of a system with phase 'issues' going to one without phase issues. My comments were meant to invite knowledgable audiophiles to comment about PC's and how the delivery of current to a component can alter phase relationships. That's all it amounts to. So far a couple have signed in on this issue.

Do you have any imput on THIS issue? Or do you just like to take pot shots at those you feel are putting down the effect of something you find important?
Newbee, No pot shot intended at all. I was just incredulous over your post. You began with a put down of those who suggest there's large difference to be had via different PCs, and you ended with a nebulous description of changing a source, and then commenting on a possible perceived difference. Your more recent reply clarifies things nicely. I have no agenda against you. :)

I do not know if this link is directly applicable to audiophile power cords, but I did a search for "power cable invert phase" and found this:

http://www.mediacollege.com/audio/balanced/cable-balanced.html

It seems to suggest that polarity is often confused with phase.

It does not seem logical to me that phase can be inverted/influenced by a properly made standard power cable, and this article seems to support it. I am open to being educated on this by those more knowledgeable.

In all cordiality, I think you are wrong with the theory that power cords are influencing the phase, and that is causing the audible differences when different PC's are used. I would suggest the conductors, geometry and total gauge would be the primary causes to changes in performance.

When I conduct interviews with cable manufacturers, they never speak of phase in relation to their products. They discuss importance of the things I have mentioned.
Douglas, Contrary to your impression, I also do not think PC's can alter phase and I was inviting observations from others. Sometimes my statements are more figurative, more open to interpertation, than to be taken literally. Sometimes intentionally so, for no purpose other than to stir up the gray matter a tad.

What I did was accept the validity of the posters observations AND the correctness in my associating the observations by him of differences in the before PC/after PC to phase (or even polarity as your post reminds me to say) issues.

I was, by my apparently inept analogy, trying to suggest that his experince might have origins in other things, albeit it to him it seemed like it was just the result of a PC change. And, I did not assume that his experience was caused by anything specific, especially wire dressing, but was merely tring to open the subject of cause and effect to him.

An interesting aside, no one yet has disagreed with my assumption that the issues involved were related to underlying phase/polarity issues?

FWIW, one of the things about audio consumerism that I dislike, and have to restrain myself from commenting on, is the profit based recommendations from some, who make 'grand' statements (IMO) about the effect of some products and tweaks often in totally inapplicable circumstances, and in disproportion to the needs of the user. (A 'Bose' system user will not benefit from 5K speaker cable, when some zip cord will do about as much as he could reasonably expect.) The power of suggestion is a not to be underrated as powerfully sales tool.
Newbee, what evidence do you have that phase IS a potential answer to the sonic changes when the man says he replaced/moved two power cords and heard a difference?

What cables are you using in your system? You have excellent gear. I don't see any cables listed for your rig. Just curious.

Jylee, you are not crazy at all. You're quite sane. The distinctions you observe are quite achievable with good PCs. Congratulations! It appears you and your wife have good ears (and a lovely audio system!).
Douglas, I have no evidence. I'm only going from my knowledge of audio set up and recordings and Jylee's description.

Now since you have implied, if not said directly, that the major sonic changes heard by Jylee were actually caused by a PC change, perhaps you would like to describe the mechanics of it all. Your perception of the pre-PC change sound, the post PC sound, and how a different PC brought about the effect. The mechanic's please. Not just a testimonial. BTW, once again, I'm NOT arguing about the efficacy of different PC designs. This is more about what thay can v can not do, and if known, why. So tell us what you know. I'm all ears.

By the way, since you are also well informed about phasing/polarity issues, take a moment to inform us about what their effect might be as heard by a listener in a good triagulated 2 channel set up. Does anything that Jylee said in his before and after description of the sonics NOT remind you of phase/polarity issues. If not, what other than PC's do you think might be responsible for the original sonics as well as the changes.

I'm really curious because I was never totally in touch with Jylee's discription, and could not offer a ready explaination of why he experienced such a change. You seem not to have had any problem with diagnosing the problem and realizing that changing a PC was the solution. Or so it seems.
A properly designed power cord(ie: Teflon dielectric, counter-rotating geometry, etc) will reduce or eliminate intra-conductor interactions that add noise and distortion to audio signals. The right geometry will cancel unwanted magnetic interaction. The same technology is used in many interconnects, but is even more important in a PC, given the much higher currents and stronger fields dealt with there. Most high-end cords will have an EMI/RFI trap built in also. The bottom line is the same as the benefit of a good power conditioner: cleaner, quieter power to your system, which lets you here more of the info on your source material(more apparent detail/better focus/greater ambiance retrieval).
If you want to learn what different power cords can do in detail, see my reviews on Dagogo.com of the various cables I have used. There is plenty of technological information explaining how they operate. In my experience conductor, geometry, and total gauge are the primary influences of what a cable will do.

I appreciate your being candid: "I'm really curious because I was never totally in touch with Jylee's discription, and could not offer a ready explaination [sic] of why he experienced such a change."

Here's an explanation for you regarding total gauge, just one variable in cables which comes into play. Typically a PC with higher total gauge will clean up, tighten up the bass very nicely, so well that it's easily discernible. Solid core conductors are better at this than stranded. Geometry also influences how well this works. I have found that multiple smaller conductors in their own dielectric, yet having large total gauge, yield the cleanest presentation and highest detail (This also was true of the exceptionally flat sheet conductors that Magnan Cable uses).

(Now I'm sure someone somewhere has a funky cable that doesn't operate that way; I'm not interested in debating it with you as well! This is the typical result from increased gauge, only one variable in PCs)

There's only one thing I need to say about phase, and that is when the rig is out of phase the sound is more indistinct, more fuzzy, less refined, a bit expanded and disjointed - the exact opposite of what Jylee explains. He consistently discussed more detail and sharpening of the sound. If we are agreed that PCs do not change phase of a system, then the influence in this case can't be the phase from merely switching two PCs.

I perceive Jylee's description as that of the PC cleaning up the signal so as the bass has less bloat (perceived size), better phantom image (less width) and deeper sound stage. These are all quite possible with PC changes. If the two PCs he changed are not identical then he will not know what the effect of each is. If he had two of each then he'd likely know quickly which he prefers. If a person has a mix of stranded and solid core conductors they will never know what they really have in terms of sound of their cables.

I have argued that two power cords were changed, and stated that they can produce such differences in sound. Now I have provided the link to my writings that people can read about the technology which influences such differences. Possibly the Wire World article will be the most helpful.

09-19-08: Douglas_schroeder
Jylee, you are not crazy at all. You're quite sane.

Thanks. Just what I needed to hear after a few days of watching the roller coaster ride in the stock market. Now I'm going to pour myself a glass of wine put on some music.
Douglas, Perhaps the roots of this correcpondence goes to our differing perception of the description of what I considered a dramatic difference between the sound of his system before he put in the new PC.

His description, to me, suggested that he heard sound sourced to or around the speakers with a weak center image and boomy bass. This description is quite similar to what occures when 2 speakers are wired out of phase - a sound which when heard by novices causes them to think they are hearing a huge soundstage and really don't note that they have lost all specificity until they hear a solo instrument/voice which should appear from the dead center.

When the wiring to each speaaker is connected correctly, what do you get, a strong center image, a sense of specificity, a sense of depth, easy location of instruments in space, the disappearing of the speakers as a direct source and a tighter bass.

Based on that senerio, and I think that is a reasonable interpertation of his comments, I said that PC's could not be responsible for the before and after effects he had experienced.

If I had thought the changes were minor, assuming a degree of hyperbole in his description, I would have bought into changes brought about by inhancing the resolution capabilities of the electronics and thus enhancing speaker performance. I apparently should not have taken him literally.

I've consistently said, and I continue to say, I was never disputing what wire can do, only when and how much.

FYI, most of my PC's are solid core heavy guage (at least 10ga) wire. I've been using them for years and I stopped doing A/B comparisons for years. I've been happy with what they do.

But I don't know why I feel I must say this, but I must. In my experience PC changes do not perform HUGE changes. They can enhance the performance of a well set up good quality system which benefits from what they have to offer. Thats my opinion. Jylee, and all others for that matter, are intitled to investigate these matters for themselves and reach what ever conclusion they wish. Nuf said I think.
If I could add some clarification in the changes I made, I removed two PCs, one from a component not being used, and one from the MCH power amp responsible for powering the center and surrounds with MCH material. Then I moved the PC from the main amp to the component not being used, and added two new PCs for the main power amp, and MCH power amp.

When listening to stereo materials, the only change made to the setup is actually the PC to the main power amp. MCH power amp is not being used, and the unused component is, er, still unused.

Perhaps I wasn't being clear about the sound _before_ the change. I understand the effects of one speaker being wired out of phase. But my setup was not wired out of phase. I had a clear center image, but very WIDE soundstage. That was one of the things I liked about my setup, big and airy soundstage, which I thought has diminished after the PC change, which in turn surprised me quite a bit. As the soundstage shrunk, the focus seemed to have improved. The change I heard was not as drastic as correcting a speaker being wired out of phase, but pretty significant considering the only change made was to the power cord..
Jylee, your clarification is appreciated in all respects. Clearly the addition of anything that improves resolution, whether its PC's, cables, IC's, electronics, or speakers, will give you a clearer view of what is in the recording. In your case it was via a PC. In my view a reasonable audiophile goal is to get a relatively accurate reproduction of what is in the recording. Reasonable but not end all for some folks. Many prefer different speakers which give up some degree of specificity to gain a sense of wholeness in the room (Panels and many electrostats, as well as Omni's can do this very well). Horses for courses. What ever sound picture/stage you want is available and they all have trade off. FWIW. Good luck.
One of the best additions I have made in a year or so has been to install Oyaide Tunami GPX power cords on my amplifiers.

Low noise floor, grain-free, clear and dynamic. All for less than $350/ea retail. The best value in power cords I have found.

IMO.

YMMV.

FWIW.
Tvad...if you think that Oxaide Tunami is so good, try their P-4030 with the 046 plugs on each end. Jawdropping..
Always a larger and juicier carrot on the stick...

I'm happy with the Tunami GPX, but I'll keep an eye out for a used P-4030/046 in the rare case one becomes available.

At some point, the chase is more trouble than it's worth to me.

Thanks for your opinion on the P-4030.
Isn't the P-4030 the Acrolink power cable?
Newbee, very good post. :) We're not so far off in all this.
Certainly one man's "dramatic difference" may be another's "nominal difference". This is one reason written comparisons can be tricky.

Jylee you need to know two things:

1. As you have seen how one PC can have such an impact that you hear discernible differences in sound, a difference which you are able to judge as to preference, then you should do yourself a favor and continue tuning the rig to taste. Interconnects and speaker cables all contribute.

2. The effects of cables are compounding; the result of one PC is nothing compared to that of an entire suite of cables for PC, IC, and speaker. The only way I was able to authentically learn the benefits of cables, and what each particular type/geometry of cables can do was by getting entire sets and using them in comparison to other sets.
One can do this on a small scale by directly comparing PC to PC, for instance, but to get the full appreciation of the "Power of Cables" one should conduct system-wide cable changes.

[Interjection: you need to know one more thing: Just because you are sane sonically does NOT mean you are sane fiscally! Being a good audiophile will not protect you from poor investment decisions! ;)]

Most audiophiles will not go to such lengths, as it is money and time consuming. For those who are bent on obtaining the ultimate sound, it is the only methodological way to ensure the best match between box components, speakers and cables. When using entire sets of cables one should expect changes in sound perceptually comparable to changing a source, pre or amp.

Finally, once a rig is established with the preferred brand of cables, one can tune, if they wish by the addition/subtraction of one set of ICs, or one power cord, etc. at a time. This is getting to the minutia of cabling and system matching. This is the level I operate at. (Hearing a distinction due to one PC does not mean your rig is near its potential, however it does mean your rig is good enough that it can benefit from cabling changes). I can hear the distinction between one power cord exchanged on either source, pre or amp. With actively crossed systems I also alter the sound via changes of power cord to the processor (There may be very few people who do that, when from my experience it has every bit as dramatic an impact as with other components).

I am an enthusiast, pushing beyond what the normal person would in regards to such things, but I feel it has paid off quite handsomely. Is it necessary to do this in order to have a great rig? No. Is it necessary to do so to achieve the ultimate rig with your current components? Yes. That is my experience, and my position regarding cables.
09-19-08: Tvad

09-19-08: Palerider
Tvad

I really don't understand how the difference in PC's ability to deliver current would affect phase issues created by electronics or component set up.
I did not say the power cord change was causing a phase shift. What I wrote was that the change in sound I have heard in the past as a result of changing a power cord was similar to the sound of a phase shift. "

Yeah, and if you read my answer carefully you might get my reply to that. AC current phase-unbalance between components ruins 3D
09-19-08: Rodman99999
A properly designed power cord(ie: Teflon dielectric, counter-rotating geometry, etc) will reduce or eliminate intra-conductor interactions that add noise and distortion to audio signals. The right geometry will cancel unwanted magnetic interaction. The same technology is used in many interconnects, but is even more important in a PC, given the much higher currents and stronger fields dealt with there. Most high-end cords will have an EMI/RFI trap built in also. The bottom line is the same as the benefit of a good power conditioner: cleaner, quieter power to your system, which lets you here more of the info on your source material(more apparent detail/better focus/greater ambiance retrieval).
Rodman99999 (Answers)

At least this is what mumbo cable"designers" wants us to belive, but it`s far from the truth. Any PC will reduce the powersupply`s dynamic capacity as long as it`s multicore/stranded, even if real thick PC`s helps a bit. And a good PC is of course totally shielded.
Yes..4030 is Accrolink. The Tunami cord in comparison is a bit quieter I am told, however, it doesn't provide the depth, air, and clarity of the Accrolink. Chris ( I think it was he) told me that's because of the heavy shielding on the Tunami. As far as being quiet...my system is DEAD quiet..even with the volume up.
Yeah, and if you read my answer carefully you might get my reply to that. AC current phase-unbalance between components ruins 3D
Palerider (Answers)

You're right. Very sorry.

Learning how to post quotes in the smaller font would help make your replies clearer (to me anyway).

Any PC will reduce the powersupply`s dynamic capacity as long as it`s multicore/stranded, even if real thick PC`s helps a bit. And a good PC is of course totally shielded.
Palerider (Answers)
This has been debated for years, but thus far no one in these threads has provided any links to any engineering studies to bear out the theory. Furthermore, I have heard several unshielded power cords that were significantly better (quieter, clearer, and more dynamic) than some shielded cords (all being multi stranded).

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Stringreen, I assume from your last post you have not heard the factory Tunami cord, and are relating what you have been told about its qualities. Is this correct?

I find it has all the attributes that your last post claims it lacks, but I haven't compared it to the Acrolink (and it's highly unlikely I will do so).

In any case, the Tunami cords are used on my Pass Labs amps, which are fairly impervious to power cord changes. I was frankly surprised that I heard a difference with the Tunami cords installed, but I like the change, and I intend to keep them installed for the foreseeable future.

Thanks for the heads up on the Oyaide plugs.
Jylee, I'll be interested to hear what has happened to your imaging and soundstage after these new power cords have had some time to run in.

I've had a recent experience with power cord swaps myself. I got a new class D integrated amp a couple weeks ago (Onkyo A-9555), and I broke it in using a Synergistic Research AC Master Coupler. This was one of the first aftermarket power cables to get significant notice in the mid-'90s.

Once the amp finally broke in after 100 hours (the Onkyo has a long hard break-in), the sound got smoother, but ambience, details, and transients became muted or disappeared. It reminded me of the sound you get from an overdamped tonearm.

I swapped in a 2-yr-old PS Audio XStream Prelude, and the soundstage, depth, lushness, detail, transients, and ambience all came back in a big way. Class D amps are notoriously sensitive to their power sources.

So who knows, some of it may be system matching, some of it may be design evolution over a 10-year period. I always thought that SR AC Master Coupler was my best power cord. It's certainly the biggest and heaviest. But it was *killing* the musical aspects of my new class D integrated amp, and the PS Audio brought it back to life.
Tvad...no, I have used the Tunami but with the V=046, and P-046 plugs. I removed and replaced the plugs The Accro link is better in all ways. This may be true only in my system, and may be different in other systems. I am using all Ayre components with Vandersteen 5A's.
Mr P- I don't actually expect you to learn anything from this, as your "mind" is already made up, but- let me introduce you to something called, "science": (http://www.columbia.edu/itc/chemistry/photochem/spin/08.pdf) As I stated earlier, and you(so eloquently) quoted, a counter-rotating geometry can counteract the couplings mentioned in this article. Thick cables(solid or multi-strand) do nothing whatever to change the vectors that generate these fields and couplings, but only provide less resistance/impedance. It's further been proven(via simple electrical tests) that braiding(or simply twisting a pair of) conductors actually lowers capacitance and inductance compared to two conductors run side by side. OH- That paper originates from Columbia University's Education Dept., NOT a cable company. BUT- This is a free country. Believe what you chose.

Jylee, I'll be interested to hear what has happened to your imaging and soundstage after these new power cords have had some time to run in.

It's been only a few days and I think it's still a little to early to say for sure. My ears got acclimated to the smaller soundstage presentation, and it doesn't bother me as much. The stronger focus is still noticeable. Tighter and less flabby bass is still noticeable.
It sounds like that power cord is moving you in the right direction, stronger focus and less flabby bass are good. You could really open up your soundstaging with some room treatments, diffusion at 1st reflection point on ceiling, and perhaps some more behind the speakers.
Tvad,

I took a plunge and got a Oyaide Tunami GPX. I knew about the reputation of Oyaide Tunami, and your mentioning has sparked my interest. This time hooked it up to the front end. I left the rest of the components as before, including the new power cord I added to the power amp. Today is only the 2nd day with Tunami power cord, but I can already notice the improvements. The sound is much more balanced and extended to both treble and bass. The deep bass that I thought was lost with previous change is back. I can now feel the vibration of deep notes. Thanks for the suggestion!
You're welcome, Jylee. One never knows how power cords are going to work in others' systems.

I found my Tunami cords improved for about four days when installed on my amplifiers.

It may take longer on your front end, which draws less power.
My accrolink/046 combination continues to improve. There is just more going on...I hear background parts in arrangements that I never noticed before. I ordered more of the same to prepare a cord for my preamp. If there is this much improvement with the cord on only the power amp, I am expecting even greater improvement with the additional cord
So far the new power cords are working out very nice in my system. Also it occurred to me today that this was probably the most cost effective upgrade that I've ever done. Before I got new power cords I was planning on getting a new digital front end for redbook CD because I wasn't satisfied with the redbook performance of my Unidisk SC. I was thinking of either a stand alone dedicated CD player or a DAC, and either approach would have cost over a thousand dollars easily. The new power cords brought enough improvements to the sound, and it really have calmed my urge for upgrade for a lot less money! :)
Excellent! So, Jylee, would you now revise your comment from your OP, "By the way I consider myself as semi-skeptic and semi-believer of good cables. I've heard subtle difference and improvement on some of the cables. But in most cases either I can't reliably tell which is which, or if I can tell the difference it is very small."?
It seems to me you have no more doubts as to what good power cords can do. :)

Precisely as I have said; proper PCs, ICs and speaker cables can bring as much change to a rig as a different component, and in some rare cases as much as a speaker change.

Kudos for not letting doubt stand in the way of success!
Douglas- Obviously Mr J is not of the ubiquitous "concrete minded" AudioGon faction(thoroughly mixed up, and permanently set). Mr J- Continue your quest, as there are rich rewards ahead. Happy listening!!
Try makin g some DIY PC`s from 10awg or so, mybe in a twisted kimber-design and see (?) what happens..
Rodman99999; this "science" is not worth yhe paper it`s written on. Some years ago I tryed to take out some patents on some of my work. When I (just to make a conversation) mentioned the effect of using solid-core PC`s the professor looked at me like..:S
`Due to accepted theories there IS NO effect in this, but if you try it out there shure is.

All kind of electric "activity" or interference between several conductors, even if there might be some theoretic ups to it, will definetly degenerate the sound quality, and primarely dynamics.

If we speak of speakercables, it`s one factor that means absolutely all; resistance. Speakercables are extensions of the amps powercircuit, a low current circuit and must be scaled to make as low resistance as possible.

Mainly you folks have two options; argue against or ignore me on one side or simply try out what I claim and (mybe) get your ears opened.
Uh- Let's see: "speaker cables are extensions of the power amp's power circuit." What's at the beginning of the power amp's power circuit again? OH YEAH- The power cord! My ears HAVE been opened by a number of the cords I've tried and the Stealth XXX conditioner I've been using for a few years now. Thank you for your input, but the truth of the science(what the hell would a Physics professor from Columbia University know compared to you?) I cited, and the application of it by the better cable manufacturers, has been proven in my system and I'd venture to guess: In many more systems represented here.

Really? When did you try out my solutions?