Power supply AC cords: any reason to upgrade?


As it happens my system has three linear power supplies converting 120vAC to 5, 12 and 24vDC, and Rogue Audio Ares pre-amp with a detached-box power supply of its own. Is there any benefit to upgrading the line cords feeding these units, or can I just use the decent-quality plastic molded cords the manufacturers provide?
Def213cc 4d0b 4dc4 b4e8 2a2fe26ec1c2john_g
@john_g What do their power cords look like at the moment?
e.g. like the PC’s that are supplied with computers (i.e. skinny) or something more heavy duty?

What are the linear supplies like - good quality or el-cheapo?

Do you want Store bought or DIY?

Is the DC power cord from the supply of good quality or cheep and nasty?

Can you replace the power cord on the DC side of the power supply, or is it connected inside the case?

The drawback with units like this is that
1. unless you are a competent DIYer - it gets expensive real quick
2. they may not be worth the expense

Finally - How crazy do you want to get?

Generally - upgrading the PC’s on the small power supplies can provide better sound quality, but the cables you can purchase tend to be too large/expensive to make it a viable proposition.

DIY is more affordable

The power supply for your Ares looks as though it might benefit from an upgraded PC.

There are several good PC’s out there - Signal Cable Silver Resolution springs to mind, good but affordable.

I would recommend looking at the IC’s between the components and speaker cables

I highly recommend KLE Innovations product mainly because they work extremely well and compared to the competition they start off more reasonably priced

Regards - Steve
In 10 audio's review of the Ares, he notes some minor improvements with use of a PS Audio AC-10 cord, over a DIY cord. He doesn't comment on the stock cord, unfortunately.

I currently use an AC-10 on my Ares (coincidence; I had it before I read the 10-audio review), though I haven't performed direct comparisons yet. I will do so when I get a few nicer cords to play with soon. Having owned a few Ares over the years, I can say that you're going to get a lot more mileage out of the following upgrades, vs. a cord upgrade:

  • Blue Cinemag SUT if you're using an MC cart. The Bob's Devices Sky is slightly better than the 1131, which is similar to a 1254. The difference of any of these, over the stock red 3440, is significant. If you do go for an outboard SUT, the interconnect between it and the Ares is crucial (and keep it 0.5m long).
  • Roll NOS tubes. Telefunkens are a very good 12AX7. Mazda silver plates are even better. You can use 12BH7 in the 12AU7 slots (cleared with Rogue).
  • Get the Magnum upgrades. If you have an outboard SUT or run MM cart you won't need the 1254, but you'll still get audible benefits from just the resistor, PSU, and cap upgrades. 
@mulveling   Thanks for all the suggestions. I've done the Magnum upgrade. 

What is the benefit of the (additional?) SUT? According to Rogue's website, the Magnum upgrade includes "Cinemag blue label step up transformers." Is this all in search of additional gain? My cart is a Rega Apheta II and I get plenty of volume out of it with the Ares set to its specs.

@williewonka : I'm using some DIY power cords at the moment. They're made w/DH Labs "Power Plus Reference" 12 AWG cable and Marinco plugs. All the runs are 2' or less. I had to pull one of them out to do some other work and got to wondering if wrangling all these firehose-size cords is worth the trouble for a device that takes everything to DC anyway. The power supplies are 2 Keces, one 24vAC unit whose manufacturer I can't remember, and the Rogue Ares' OEM. They're all pretty solidly built with heavy metal cases.
how low is the inter-winding capacitance on the transformers inside your power supplies?
@john_g
No, you wouldn’t want to stack an internal & external SUT. Rather, you’d bypass the internal SUT (i.e. run in MM mode) in favor of the external SUT. Of course this only makes sense if the external SUT is of higher quality than the internal -- and enough of a difference to overcome the extra interconnect and noise pickup potential.

BTW I've accidentally stacked an internal & external SUT and the result was actually too little gain. The 2nd SUT presents a very heavy load to cartridge, and you lose most of the cartridge's signal before it even hits the 1st SUT.

The blue Cinemag they put in the Ares Magnum is a 1254. It is excellent, though there are some incremental improvements to be had with a Bob’s Devices Sky CineMag and excellent cable -- but it’s not nearly as big as the 1st jump from a red 3440 to the blue 1254 or 1131. Since your Ares is Magnum’d you’re sitting pretty good there.
@john_g - since you are experience with DIY you could try the HELIX power cord detailed on my web site....

http://image99.net/blog/files/be8de0c383c5434907610d6b55049e69-75.html

They may seem a little daunting at first but they are actually pretty easy to make and outperform most other PC’s I have tries (some up to $1500)

I would use the following
- a 16 gauge conductor for the hot conductor
- two 16 gauge conductors for the neutral
- a 16 gauge conductor for the ground

Keep the same quality of conductor as identified on the site from Take Five Audio - they are great quality

Using lighter conductors makes it much easier to wind the helix coils

My system currently uses a mix of 10 gauge for mains and power distribution and 13 gauge for source components and sounds amazing

I also have a mini system that uses a 16 gauge version and it is outstanding.

Let me know if you have any questions

Steve
randy-11 I don't know the inter-winding capacitance of the transformers.

williewonka Thanks for the link. I might try this.
The only way to know for certain is to try them in your system.

Suggest :  go to  THECABLECOMPANY.com  access their lending library.

Also see  JPSLABS.com their cables are excellent.