PS Audio AC-5 question

I recently bought PS Audio AC-5 power cord for my Parasound HCA-1205A amp. My pre is Anthem AVM-20 with Shunyata Diamondback power cord. My speakers are Paradigm Studio 60 v.3. When I changed the power cord of the amp from stock cable, I found that the overall sound is more forward than I would like. Also the top end has opened up, but I feel it to be a bit harsh - to the face. Not sure what is the issue. Is the PS Audio AC-5 a worng choice to Parasound amp?.
Hi, not at all I hate to be the bearer of bad news but your going to need 250 to 300 hrs of burn in time for your new cable to settle. Our setups are similar I use an AVM 20 mated to an Halo A21 cables are AC-3's four total and one AC-10 and an Statement SC before the Ac-10 arrived a year after the Ac-3's one powered my A21 and added nice weight to the image and a fuller over all sound over the stock and a Xstream plus which was a whopping 8awg design replaced with the statement sc then back to the AC series with the AC-10(killer cable). Long story short I lived with the Ac-3 for a year the AC's are balanced cables when broken in and you will love the new potential you will recieve from your gear.when each of mine hit the 225 hour mark I was floored. If you have any questions let me know keep us posted on your findings!
i agree. currently have ac10's and ac5's in my system and all required a long break in. mine didn't get sorted out until 200+ hours and sounded even better after 400 hours. give them a chance to loosen up and they'll do a wonderful job.
Thanks jdub and levy. After reading ur comments, i think I made a right decison in picking ac-5. Long wait ahead of me for cable break in. Also, i swapped out shunyata diamondback from my avm-20 to ac-5 cable.I loved the way the preamp sounded. So i have started to think diamondback to be a weak link. I have a good deal on audience powerchord(old version) and Shunyata Taipan Alpha(old version), will any of these better diamondback on preamp or power amp (ac-5 and powerchord/taipan alpha combo).
If your budget allows and If it where me, I would get another AC-5, works better in tandum ,in fact I'm going to sell my Statement SC in favor of an AC-5 or AC-12 if my budget allows (lol).
Thanks jdub,
Thanks jdub, Iam holding off buying other cables. Iam nor looking for AC-10 for the amp and will move AC-5 to the preamp.
TYPO - Iam holding off buying other cables. Iam now looking for AC-10 for the amp and will move AC-5 to the preamp
I have got a real good deal on AC-10 on craiglist here. Is there any way I can check if the cord is not fake???.
Music Direct is still doing the 50% off deal. Is the
deal better than this. I just bought an AC-5

No affiliation with them.
Not really, PsAudio has taken steps to stop some ebay fakes, but I would trust my gut on this one, how much is it?
It is $350, he says it is new.
Use music direct and get half price and peace of mind.
Hi Lake_11,
I used the AC-5 on my AVM-30 a few years back and really loved the outcome, and I have posted it up here as well.Search.
Just off the record, in sound quality, my AVM-30 and A5 amp were no match with my newly purchased Jeff Rowland Pre-amp Capri and amp 102.
I think Anthem is only good enough for home theater.
Thanks Vinylvin and Jdub for the info. I picked up AC-10 at their ware house at 50% off!, great deal. AC-10 now is on Parasound amp, immediately I noticed a big change. Lot of detail, crystal clear highs. I can imagine how it will sound after burn-in.
Lake11: if you like them now, you're gonna love-um after a few hundred hours of use. i use a couple of ac10's and noticed a difference from the beginning as well. however, i noticed much more improvement over time. you're gonna be one happy camper.

I'll second that. enjoy Lake 11!
Nasaman, Iam 70% music and 30% HT. If you were to identify the weak gear for my music listening between Anthem AVM-20 pre and Parasound HCA 1205A amp, which one will that be.
I was exactly in your shoes, going 80% music and 20% movies/TV. The AC-5 did bring me smiles when compared with other cords. Before I'm pointing out your weakest link, allow me to write few more things about the AC-5.
My Anthem's gear did appreciate the AC-5. The AC-5 gave me what I was looking for in that application, 80/20, detailed, classed and clean sound. Very fast respond for movies. It covered up weakness and flaws of Anthem's gear. But right when I took a big step and moved to a dedicated 2-ch gear (Jeff Rowland), I found that the AC-5 went a bit away from my 2-ch listening- musicality and warmness.
But as time goes by, I now do miss the AC-5. As matter of fact, I'm looking to buy a used one again right now, but there's so many fakes ones out there that I'm just tired of looking, searching, and investigating.
Read here and chat directly with PS-audio's CEO:

About your weakest link, I lived with my Anthem's gear for about 4 years and I thought I was in heaven each time I played it -reliable, fun, and friendly user... until, yup, until I took the risk and bought the seperate JRDG. My current JRDG 102 amp is only 100w D-class but gets much more clarity and class when compared with 225wpc Anthem A5. The pre-amp Anthem AVM-30 was not even close when put side-by-side with the JR Capri. How much diff? like a $100-unit compared with $2K one.
I kept the Anthem for awhile to try diff combos & mix it up and I felt that the Capri preamp mated with A5 amp sounded cleaner than the AVM30 mated with JR 102 amp. Though I've never owned your Parasound, I think I'd still pick the Anthem AVM20 as for my first replacement.
Great luck.
Hi Nasaman and Lake like you guys I too am 80 music 20 movies, and have tried to strike a balance accordinly.I also like to extract the full potential from my gear before moving are the changes i made to get my money's worth from my Anthem avm 20. improvements came from moving up from a Parasound HCA 2003A 220 watts x3 to a Halo A21 and from Boston Acoustics VR40 to E100 mains (breath taking speakers)swithiching from mostly AQ cables to Morrow Sp3 bi-wire and Ps audio Ac-3's thoughout and some wall treatments to get rid of first reflections and 2 corner bass traps. Mind you this was all nice to get started and yeilded great results , next I looked at powerconditioners and wanted to get my 5yr old Monster hts 2600mk2 off the system, This led me to Ps Audio and decided to Purchase an Quintet for everything but the A21. I read some where else someone had great results with Jc-1 mono blocks on the Ps audio Soloist Premier in wall power conditioner so why not Ithought the idea of being able to protect my amps and not loose power delievery sounded compelling, before I was in the straight to the wall amp mind you I already had 2 dedicated 20amp lines one for the rest and one for my A21 and Soloist and gosh the doors to High fidelity swung wide open. so in my humble opiniion I would adress power first and you'll really see what your avm 20 can do after that of course sure an dedicated preamp would be nice but only if needed you have already begun to get better sound from it trust me theres more and for not alot of money the 8 pannels and 2 bass traps in coustom colors ran me about $400 and the power upgrade Quintet, Soloist Premier and Premier outlet about $700 I now have the best of both killer 2 channel setup and a theater that rocks!
As of now, I have 'Monster HTS-3500 MKII' feeding
- Parasound amp thru PS Audio AC-10
- AVM 20 preamp thru PS Audio AC-5
- Velodyne Sub (stock cable)
- other players and TV

Monster power conditioner is connected to wall thru stock cable, I dont think the cable is changeable.

Not sure where to start the power cleanup!.
The Ps audio Quintet can be had for around $320-350 at music direct,The captive cord can be a limitation on the Monster. Cool thing is you won't believe how much impact the Powercord has on the overall sound of the conditioner after switching from the Monster which I loved for years, the Quintet had first noticiable deeper blacks on Hdtv and blu-ray movies and a more 3d look as well as richer colors Inoticed this first because after instalation I turned on the tv first(lol)! after that for music and HTsound, dead quitet soundstage, deeper bass and what one would precieve as increased dynamics it seemed louder? Now the benifit of changing the powercord is another ball game as this will effect the rest of your gear you get to see where what works best as you did with your amp and preamp and get even more out of your gear. (Imop) I would sell the Monster down the road and put the cash towards the Quintet you wont be sorry you did and like I did you'll see why power is truly is the foundation of your sound.
Thanks Jdub, you have given me a start to think.
Jdub, There is also the Duet version of the power center, not sure if this is exactly the same as Quintet except the no. of receptacles. Iam thinking of Duet just for my amp and pre, instead of connecting all devices to Quintet and overloading it. Can Quintet can handle 6-7 connections without losing its benefits. Also, does the stock power cord in Duet/Quintet suffice?.
Hi Lake,On my Quintet I run my Anthem Avm 20,Sacd player,Blu-ray player,cable box,TV,Anthem MCA 30(3x200) and an M&k Mx-150 sub. For my Parasound A21 Its on it's own 10awg 20amp line and I use the PS Audio Soloist Premier in wall conditioner which max power is 1800 watts, the Quintet(also on a dedicated 12awg 20amp line) with all the above is only 1250 watts with no limitation of Dynamics at all and the Isolation between components is great the line will hold up to 2000 watts itself. Now if you only have a 15amp line for now you would still be fine with all your gear including your amp on the Quintet and for even better results you can use the Soloist Premier before your Quintet or Duet and get even better results (I tried running it all on the Quintet without any problems in fact liked it a lot I just could'nt let the extra line go to waste.)So if all you can start with is the Duet and it suits your needs go for it its the same as the Quintet minus the extra outlets and cable in and out and Remote triggers.And yes you will want to upgrade the stock cord but will be fine with it till you can.Don't hesitate to ask if you need anymore help.
Thanks much Jdub, I will soon be starting the hunt for Duet or Quintet!. Need to get rid of Monster HTS first though!.
Good luck Lake!Can't wait to hear the results!
My PS Audio AC-10 have burned in for around 120 hrs. The mids and bass are beautifully defined. But the highs are very much veiled, especially the cymbals. Not sure if this is how it has to be or the cord still needs burn in time to open up more.
Sounds about right just hang in until around 230-270hrs and watch the highs extend cleanly and beyond what they where before.Until then the mids may dip again and the bass as well, in the end the sound will be balanced with no respect of any particular frequeny.I was able to reposition my speakers after breakin because the sound stage and instrument placement was very differnt than before(in a good way of course)because of the increase in the weight of the overall sound. center image and the depth and width of the soundstage. The change will not be small at all and gobs of new details in the music will be revealed just plain neutral sound.Keep chimming in on this I have great notes on what I experienced through the break in process.
Thanks Jdub, getting more anxious to hear the post 270 hrs sound!, few more days for the complete burn-in.
Are you guys using the Power cords with or without the ground pin? I've been breaking the AC-5 in with the ground pin, I'll remove it later to see if it makes a difference.
I have mine plugged into a Duet.
Vinylvin, Iam burining-in AC-5 with ground and AC-10 without ground pin, as it is connected to Parasound known for the ground hum, hum was gone as I removed the ground pin. Iam not sure though if this pin will affect the burn-in process.
Hi Vinylvin, I only remove the ground out of nessesity, I had ground loop hum from my Halo A21 and Anthem, which I'am happy to report is gone! I mean dead quite. I recieved a pair of Morrow Audio's Ma3 balanced Ic's today. In the past before Ps Audio's cables I used cheater plugs and hated the very thought of it.And i know it's dangerouse to lift the ground.Today I put the Ground pin back an no Hum, and Lake( if your reading this) the sound from balanced is Outstanding over rca from the Anthem.Back to the ground lift from the Duet I would'nt recommend it,my Quintet is grounded, Now if its a 2 prong device like my preamp or bluray player I take the ground pins off. BTW how's the burn in comming along?
I can't lift the ground from the Duet, I use a Signal Cable Magic power cord. I use th AC-5 for my Marantz SA-8001 SACD/CD player.

As far as burning in it's hard to tell I changed speakers (Totem Hawks from Polk LSi15s)& speaker wire at the same time. Sounded great right from the start. Right now I only have about 10 hrs on the AC-5, the Totems are broken in, I bought then here, local. Click on my system if you'd like.
Congrats on the Totem Hawks! I made that same mistake last year when I brought a new amp ,speakers and cables I installed all the cables at once (lol) like a stew! Instead of one at a time to evaluate the improvement of each piece. With power I slowed it down to listen to what each change was adding or taking away Soloist Premier, Quintet and Power port premier then foucused on the Cables!
Jdub, I got a PS Audio Quintet as loaner from local audio shop. This is a demo unit, the dealer said its well burned in for months. When I connected my gear, the background is extremely dark, details and dynamic are amazing. I can get a dimensional sense of the instrument placement!. But on the downside, the highs and mids(maily vocals)are rolledoff/laidback. Using Monster power conditioner, the mids and highs are a bit forward which sounds more musical. Listening thru quintet is great, but gets a bit analytical. Note: the guy gave me power cord, that is not even the quintet's stock cord.
For kicks put the AC5 on the Quintet to get a taste of its true potential then try the AC10, give each cord a good 30min to settle and remember your two new cables are still breaking in the highs and mids are the last to bloom with bass filling out as well. Your ears and system already jelled well with the monster and is settling in to the new equipment . Is your tv connected to the Quintet as well? if so after the power cord switch tell me the results!Sometimes the rule of thumb is to put your best Powercord first and let it trikle down to the rest of your gear!
agree with Jdub. i've got an ac-10 feeding my quintet from a dedicated 20A line. have another ac-10 going to my amp. use 2 ac-5's for my pwd and pwt and an ac-3 for my sub.

separating audio/video is a good idea imho. have all my HT gear running from a separate 15A dedicated line.

spent alot of time trying to different hook-ups before settling on what i currently have. it sound wonderful!
Did some cord swapping experiment. First, AC-10 on Quintet gives the best sound, AC-5 is just lesser. Shunyata Diamondback, removes the dymanics and adds grain - this is the weakest link in my system. On the video, both AC-10 and AC-5 increases sharpness and adds deep black levels. Even the sound in much improved. I could not note much video difference between Ac-10 and ac-5 though. So now, I will be adding a new AC-10 from wall to quintet, another AC-10 from quintet to amp, AC-5 from quintet to preamp, all other components directly to the quintet.
Levy, by dedicated 20A line, do you mean you are connecting directly to the wall?. Are AC-10/5 20A lines? - not too good in electrics!.
... by dedicated 20A line, do you mean you are connecting directly to the wall?...
Dedicated line meaning adding/running a new seperate line starting from ur house electrical fuse box STRAIGHT to your audio system.
Sounds like a solid plan to me Lake, the Quintet is a nice unit for the price and combined with the AC10 its that much more value to perfomance.And the sonic benifits are unreal.Movies music all take on a new level of realism and best of all you keep your gear and hear it at its best and can sit back and enjoy the fruit of your audiophile labor! Give your Quintet 250-300hrs as well. Man are you gonna be in for a suprise! keep us posted.
Cant wait!, picked up AC-10. Now the classic confusion - whether to put AC-10 on Anthem processor to get the best out of it or to put it on Quintet to give clean power to all components. For now I have put it on the Quintet and let it burn in.
Good choice! it will influence the sound of everything after it the most, even the Ac5. Start counting and take yourself some notes on the burn in, its a good reference point to work from.Keep me posted!
The new 1.5m AC-10 between wall and Quintet has burned in 48 hrs - overall sound is a bit veiled, waiting for further burn-in. Meanwhile, am thinking if 1m AC-12 between wall and Quintet will benefit the sound, as I dont need 1.5m. Not sure if the price-to-performance ratio of AC-12 is justifiable over AC-10. But I read reviews that AC-12 is best from wall to conditioners than on the power amps.
That's not necessarily true about not being good on amps,While it will benifit the wall to Quintet setup, in my experience with different configurations the amp and AC10 was not just a sutble improvement! it was just as good as the AC10 to Quintet if not better in some respects. In either configuration ie. Statement Sc to amp was not as good as Ac10 to amp,but STatetment to Quintet and AC10 to Amp was better IMHO.For this reason Ihope to order the AC12 this week for my amp and run the AC10 on the Quintet! But until next week can,t say for sure.I'll keep posting on my findings.(here we go again,I love this!)
Iam likely to get my AC-12 next week too. I thinking AC-12 on amp may give better sound IMHO. Lets keep the finding posted, interesting, yes!.
Sounds good to me,next week should be intresting indeed! The AC12 might the Icing on the cake and then some I hope. I to am thinking the amp is a good place to start.
As my Quintet is burning in and AC-12 is on the way, I tried the Hi-Fi Tuning fuse for my amp. I felt it adds a little of height and width to the imaging. Also there is a little bit of added realism, but at the expense of added brightness. I swapped back to the stock fuses. Do you have any experience with these fuses?
Not yet, I have been thinking about fuses though. I get to order my AC12 thursday. My Morrow Audio MA3 balanced should have about 360hrs on Saturday which should give me a good idea on the sound before adding the AC12.I'm using the stockcord on the amp at the moment. What IC's do you use? I have a mix of Morrow and AQ (Columbia and King Cobra). Speaker cables are Morrow's SP3 biwire.
I use Acoustic Zen Matrix Ref II from Pre to amp and Silver Ref II from CDP to pre. I cant use balanced ICs as my amp does not have balanced inputs. I think the HIFI fuses does bring in good improvement over the stock fuses. Parasound amp has 2 fuses for each channel. I only changed 1 fuse in each channel, which I think is not correct. I have to change both the fuses on each channel. BTW, I have not changed the mail AC fuse on the amp.
Keep me posted on this one, now you got me very intrested, and sweet IC's. BTW I've heard the fuse orientation is important?