PS Audio Ultimate outlet

Have thought about one to protect amp from surges but do not want to affect the sound. Anybody have one?
Hi Nomoney, I asked the same question 3 days ago and no one answered. I was just about to put in a Hubble outlet, but will wait and see if any of our members try it before going through with the outlet change. If that isn't an endorsement of the high quality of Audigon's posters, what is? The PS Audio power plants are excellent, so I hope their outlets are as equally as good. I have a few other things happening this month, and won't have time to try one.If no one else does, I will in a few weeks and post results here.
Bmpnyc, good to hear from you, we seem to have the same interest in a lot of gear! I am going to go ahead and order one of these and take my chances since there is a 30 day money back policy. Unfortunately I think they are back ordered untill mid March. Have a good weekend
I just got one. It's going back. Dark, dark, dark with my VTL-225's. It muddies up the sound, sucks out all harmonics, 12-hour break-in didn't help. Better pc didn't matter.
The P300 Power Plant is a definite improvement, the Ultimate Outlet isn't, especially for the price, and the fact that you need to use a premium cord instead of the wimpy AC pc that comes with it. Can't recommend it. Monster HTS2000 power conditioner strip is much better, only $130. Your system may yield a different result, but I'd tell tubed amp owners to forget it. I'm pretty disappointed, after waiting a month or so for it.
BTW, the Outlet's choke radiates a significant amount of EMI, which can't be good for your system. I heard a spitty edge on highs that sounds like an EMI artifact. Locate it far, far, away from components and ic's, unshielded pc's.
DO NOT sit it on top of PS-300.
I've got one on order, I'll let you know what I think when it comes in. Hope it's not the same reaction as Estmad.....
I hope Estmad's experience is one of those situations where break in should be 24 hours, but is more like 150 hours, otherwise it is a big let down, considering the description at PS Audio's website. Estmad, let us know if things get any better. I sure hope they do.
Good post Estmad; like Bmp says, hope you'll keep us posted. Thanks. Craig
Spoke to PS Audio, they advise 100 hrs burn-in(!). But I have their Lab cable--which uses the same wiring--on my P-300, and it only took 6-8 hours to sound "right." I'm dubious. Will let it burn over weekend and will report. Stay tuned...
let us know eastmad, I will wait untill then to pick up the phone.... Thanks,
Estmad, Thanks for your continued input, will keep an eye out for your update. Good to hear from you too No money.
Sorry guys, it's a thumbs down. The UO is a UFO--U Flunked Out. I was trying to give it a fair trial by burning it in for 2 days now. The last straw was when just the turn-on impulse from one amp blew the damn thing's fuse. (If your amp dims the lights when you turn it on, the Ultimate Outlet isn't gonna like it! It's a ballun, after all--an inductor--a quite pricey one at that ($300). Current can't change instantaneously through an inductor, no matter what PS Audio says in the marketing literature. It still darkened the audio pallette, subtracted delicate details and harmonics, reduced air, and flattened the soundstage depth. It did bump up the bass, but it was a bloated, boomy kind that some might enjoy. IMO, the UO is just unmusical. It's a subtractive device. It seems (at least in my system) to rob the life from the music; of course your mileage may vary.
But hey, there's a 30-day return (you'll be out some heavy duty return postage though) offer, so give it a shot in your system. Remember to position it at least 3 feet away from any other component--the farther, the better (it spews RFI/EMI). Also, the thing's extremely sensitive to the input AC cord used--the flimsy stock cord sounds bright compared to a good premium cord, like Synergistic Research or Silver Audio Power Burst, which sound dark and flat powering the UO. It's probably designed to only sound good with a PS Audio Lab Cable ($$$), natch.
For $300, go buy your kid a good bicycle. You'll still have about a hundred bucks left over. And the money will go to much better use. -Ed
Thanks for the update and good advice, Estmad.
Thanks Estmad, my amp definately dims the lights at power up so this will be a problem. I knew it sounded too good to be true.
If all you are looking for is a good quality outlet that will grip your plugs tight, get a Hubbel. Jenna Labs makes a cryo-frozen version if you want your Hubbel to have some fancy audiophile treatments.

Save the surge protection for something better than a fuse in the wall. Sounds like a gimmicky design to me. I've never had good sound from these kinds of devices.

Has anyone tried Brick Wall surge protection devices? They are supposed to be more invisible to the ear.
I think you guys may be right about the amp. But I've plugged one outlet into my P600 and plugged the digital components into it. Big improvement. Then plugged second outlet before the P600--again, the improvement here is nothing to sneeze at. Strips away digital grunge, bigger sound, tighter bass, extended treble. A winner, I think. On the amp, I thought the outlets shut it down and were a negative--could be a result of flimsy power cords that the outlet is supplied with or they need to breakin. Or the outlets are just a bad idea for amps--I originally bought the outlets for the amp, but will most likely keep them for the front-end. Not what I expected.
i currently run my amps straight-in to the wall outlets - it gives the best sound - i don't tink i could afford the two ps-audio p1200's i'd prolly need to power-condition my amps w/o sucking the life outta them! ;~)

but, i'm nervous running 'em unprotected - has anyone had any experience w/the vans evers *unlimiter*? this is a four-outlet conditioner specifically for amps, said specifically *not* to limit the current awailable to yer amps, regardless of their draw. at a retail price of $675, it sounds like it mite almost be worthwhile...

thanks, doug s.

Hi Dugg; I looked in on the VansEvers site, and yeah the Unlimiter looks good, but the PS Audio Ultimate outlet also claims to not limit power draw or affect sound quality. Steve McCormack has recommended that I plug my amp directly to wall, and soundwise that works best, but like you, I'd like some spike/surge protection. A Tice Elite 4 "killed" sound quality, but it's limited to 1800 watts. I really was hoping this PS Audio would work well w/ high current amps, but as Estmad reports here, it doesn't look good. Craig.
craig, czech out my thread in tech-talk titled "pwr conditioner - vans evers unlimiter" for some more info...
The outlets definitely do not work on the amps. A/B'd them with a friend who is not an audiophile. Immediately said they sound harsher. He was right. Harsh and they shrink soundstage. A little cleaner sound.
I had been waiting for weeks for these ultimate outlets to do some magic to my amps (Bryston 7b-st) like the 300 had done for my SA-1 and Tact Rsc 2.o. I had similar good experience with the ultimate power cord which was purchased to go with the 300 but I found the most emprovemnt with it attached to my SA-1. Now enter the Untimate outlets. I bought one for each of the amps. I set my system to mono and did double blind testing on each speaker. the outlet did have a significant effect on the sound in my system. all negative. it was likd i had put a blanket over the speaker it was hooked into. I tried one on one speaker; then the next (not knowing which one was connected until the music played). I couldnt stand it. after 2 days of burn in i boxd them up. they were that bad in my system. hopefully this was an abaration system specific or an early defective run. YMMV. I would sure like to know what they tested these on and whether the results were mixed. p.s. Audio is a great company. I sure hate to see them make a product which is not only mediocre, but substantially degrades the sound.
Sorry, but feeling obligated, to report this news.
I disagree with you. PS Audio is not a great company; it's a fantastic one. But on the outlets for the amps something has gone terribly wrong; I wonder if it's the flimsy power cords, but I doubt that that alone can account for the terrible effects they have on the sound when placed on amps.
Thanks for keeping us up to date everyone.
I'll second the thanks, you guys just saved me a big pain.
Yesterday, your Ultimate Outlet arrived. 5 minutes later, it ws on line. I have no idea what your claims are for this piece. Please remember that my system is "tubed" from one end to the other. But what I heard was: a drop in the noise. Those little silences in music are breathtaking.
Also a clearer decay in the notes, they go on forever! As if the resolution increased. The same for imaging. The frequency balance seems more uniform. Music is just more real! The real test will come tonight, when I listen in a totally dark room. This could be scarey!

You have made me a believer. And this from a person who doesn't believe in tweaks. If anyone doesn't have, at the very least, your Power Plant: they DO NOT know what their systems are capable of reproducing. And the "outlet" has raised the bar!! I am filled with admiration. Now I am wondering about your power cords. Will it ever end?
WELL DONE!! Jim Germann
Don't know about power amps, but this thing is killer on digital!

Just got my UO yesterday and find myself in disagreement with the negative posts.

I'll try it on an amp. It is wonderful!
For power amps, the RGPC is a great performer.
I use a pair on my ARC VT100 MKII with excellent results
You cannot affect the sound of your gear by messing around with outlets or power cords. The fact that you think you can only proves how much of this business is psychological.
Stevemj; your above assertion has not been my experience, but would you please tell us what components, including various wires, that are not clouded by nasty (and expensive) psychological overtones? This information could save us a great deal of money. It would be really be helpful if you would provide brand names of "the good stuff" as well as "the bad stuff". Thankyou. Craig
Stevemj, if it where psychological wouldn't most of these posts tend to prefer the "Ultimate Outlet"? After all these folks ordered one after reading the hoopla on the website about the improvements to expect, it costs a lot of more than the outlet in your wall so it would have to be better right? You really should try some of this stuff before shooting it down based on the numbers. Thanks.
Stevenmj: You gave the impression that you were going to give us a break in another of your posts, but I guess not, so it seems. You spout generalities but offer no information on the systems or circumstances of your findings. This is a gear/music orientated site in which the members walk the walk (actually own/demo and audition the gear that they post about). You on the other hand only talk the talk and it has already gotten very old very quickly. Most of us can hear very well, thank you, but you have nothing to say. You have also commented to the effect that you wish to stop us from wasting our money on "do nothing" products. Although it would be self serving, I wish that I could stop you from making such an ars out of yourself.
Craig - My intention is to save you money. I am sticking to the most obvious hoaxes. Line cords, power distributors, outlets etc. aren't in the signal path and can't even theoretically have an effect. The psychological aspect is not something that just affects the weakminded. Everybody, myself included, almost always seems to hear a difference when something is changed. The more you expect to hear a difference the more likely it is that you will.

Take line conditioners. The idea that a line conditioner reduces noise is so outlandish it can't be ridiculed. The electrons in the wire have been around for 15 billion years. Shuffling them back and forth for a few hours in an attempt to change something is preposterous. Does this stop people from hearing a significant difference. NO.

How about those arrows on the phono cables? The manufactures know perfectly well that the exact amount of current had better flow in each direction in those wires. Does that stop them from putting arrows on them. NO. They must have a very low opinion of the intelligence of audiophiles. Do you think people would hear a difference if they installed the cables with the arrow point opposite to the manufacture's suggestion? Of course they would.

Buying expensive line cords is another act of insanity. Think about it. On one end of the cord is a hundred feet of ordinary wire going round and round the transformer core and on the other end of the cord is several hundred miles or ordinary wire going back to the power source. Even if there were something special besides the price of the cord, what good is 8 feet of cool wire in line with hundreds of miles of ordinary wire going to do?

I say don't waste money on outlets, power cords, line conditions and cable conditioners.

I think exotic speaker wire is bogus too, however, at least it is in the signal path. I am going to test some cheap wire, the kind I use, as soon as I get the test equipment I have on order. The test is simple and will measured effects down to a small fraction of a db.

Spend your money on good speakers. That is where the action is. Even the very best speakers have much higher distortion than a Radio Shack receiver - as long as you are not driving the RS to clipping.
Dekay - I'm tired of your personal attacks. I noticed in one of your posts you said "The cables are marked as to the direction of use". From this I can only assume that you do not know that audio signals are AC. Or worse, you know that audio is AC but you are so confused that you think it still must make a difference at to the direction of the cables. At any rate, with your level of knowledge, should only post questions.
Steve, you didn't answer my qestion. Why would we hear a negetive affect when using this outlet if it costs more and we have been told that it will IMPROVE the sound of our amps? How can you say it doesn't make a difference if you have not tried it! I can say all day long that BMW 750i drives like my Maxima....but I have never even sat in 750 much less drove one so who is going to believe me
Steven: I apoligize for attacking you personaly, though I do find your posts most irratating. However there is no talking to you because you obviously either have a hearing problem or have not properly auditioned (if at all) the gear/equipment that you dismiss. To be credible you would have had to audition the products that you have strong feelings about, which I doubt that you have.
PS: Steven: As far as cable being directional the only conductor that I can conceive of as not being so following run in (another aspect that you probably do not believe in) would be totally symmetrical (perhaps crystalline) in structure. Otherwise the cable would be directional. Whether the difference is audible in all cables, I don't know, but it has been in the cable that I use and have used. You also fail to comprehend that many cables are marked for direction due to their grounding schemes. As far as my answering questions goes, I have 35 years+ experience (with real equipment in real situations) plus was a musician many of those years having recorded and mixed music as well and feel confident answering questions based on real life experiences. In other words, I don't guess or make it up as I go along. Sound familiar?
The question was the Ps Audio outlets improve sound.? The answers varied, but were mostly negative. That saves many posters time and money, and was of real service to Auidogon's members, unlike the " I know it all, and these fools are wasting their money " attitude some here are espousing. As to whether cables, outlets, line conditioners make a difference, anyone denying it is wasting our time. The issue is really, what kind of difference, and is it worth it? The objectivist vs. the subjectivist topic is so old. Statistical testing for differences is only part of the criteria for judging, not all of it. Our results are always limited by the tests themselves. Experience, scepticism, and an open mind should be respected as in Dekay's case. No one here knows it all, and I am glad of that fact Mr. Stevemj.
No money - I don't know why. I am only claiming that it has nothing to do with the fidelity of the sound. The power from the wall gets hacked up by the rectifiers and dumped into the storage capacitors. The power supplies have a significant amount of ripple on their plus and minus rails. Small irregularities on the power line will make small irregulaities on the relitively large amount of ripple on the rails. The fidelity of the sound is uneffected by this ripple until an amplifier is driven into clipping. During clipping the ripple of the power supply shows up on the top of the wave form the amp is trying to reproduce. At this point distortion is very high and audible.

There are some things that just don't need to be tested. Here is an analogy to the power cord, distribution, outlet senario. You are in a small submarine well below the surface waves (power supply ripple) whose particle's vertical movement is in a circular fashion and extends something like two times the height of the waves. Large seaguls are landing and taking off from the surface creating little waves. My contention is that in the submarine you will not feel the effect of the birds activity.

What make these products even more ridiculous is that they don't do anything to the line anyway (they don't stop the seaguls from landing). I read an ad for one of the ac line conditioners that bragged about not having any coils, filters, transformers or capacitor to spoil the quality of the sound. Of course there is no sound on the power supply side. And the very things that would clean up the ac line are the things they brag about not having.

You could by a ferroresonant transformer. They actually do clean up and stabalize the AC power. They provide constant voltage and tremendous surge protection. They won't make things sound better but they will protect your valuable equipment. Problem is that they make a lot of mechanical noise due to magnetostriction (the transformer laminations actually grow and shrink as the the magnetic field varies). If you could sound proof one in a box it would be a useful addition to your system.

sorry, but what's all this *blather*?!? yust *listen*, man! sometimes the difference in sound between power conditioners, etc, is so obvious, it's a no-brainer, *anyone* could hear the difference. yes, even power conditioners, that aren't even in the signal path.

i yust recently removed a 20 amp 2400 watt voltage stabilizer/conditioner from my system to see if it was doing anything to the sound - i'd never run the current set-up w/o it. well, the sound improvement running my amps straight into the wall was huge - my wife came in & asked what did i do to make the stereo sound so good? i'm now gonna try the vans evers unlimiter - if it does *nothing* to the sound, isle be quite content! :>)

and, i've heard a system where the addition of a ps-audio p300 made a big improvement.

so, while i'm all for saving money, i don't make yudgments about things i've never tried. it's patently *obvious* yuve never tried these things ewe diss so much, perhaps cuz ewe can't see the logic behind how/why they work. why is it so obvious, ewe may ask? cuz if ya *did* try 'em, yude hear the difference! unless ya really *are* deaf...

regards, doug s.


why did you delete paul mcgowan's post from this thread? while it may be construed as adwertizing, it was also most useful info, from a mfr, admitting that there is a problem w/one of his products...

doug s.

Yes, I should note that I've been sent a revised outlet in which the fuse is no longer in series. This is said to drastically improve performance. I'm going to run it in and will report in a few days.
Steve, most of the posts state that this outlet has an adverse affect when used with amps. Is it not possible that this is true? I have an idea, put down your books and listen. Why would you fork out the cash for a dual trace scope ( nice thing to have around, but for what? ) and not be willing to spend a little jack on some USED cable or power cords. You can turn around and sell them if they make no difference to you. Why not??? You don't see reviews of equipment being written soley based on measurements.
Steve; it seems you actually took my post on 3/12 seriously. I really meant it sort of facetiously. OTOH if you really do have info on BRAND NAMES of various equipment that is some kind of scam, I'm sure we'd all like to hear about it. Good post Dugg, hope ewe'll keep us posted on the van evers unit. Craig
No money - The scope is for a speaker project, not just to test wire as suggested. I paid less for it than many here have in their line cords - God bless Ebay.

Really, unless it has been run over by a truck, there is just nothing and outlet can do wrong. Consider all the things in series with it. Should we test the AC circuit breakers and find which ones sound best. How about the transformers on the telephone pole. I'm sure there are different brands and of course some must sound better, right? Do you think that power from nuclear plants will sound better than power from coal burning generators? These are all equally valid questions.

My engineering audiophile friend says we are missing out on making some easy money from believers. No one has considered the gross distortion that must be caused by the inline fuses. If we could just get some gold plated fuses we could sell them for a mint. I can see it now, "Forth Dimension Audiophile Gold Fuses". Only $45.00. Improved mid-range definition, huge soundfield without loss of spacial precision, tighter bass, faster dynamic damping suppression and reduced stress on power supply components. Get your fuses from people understand what you want.
Steve, the point is to not degrade the performance any more than you have to. You can put unleaded premium in your car and get a little more zip, or you can put the low test in and not. Doesn't mean that it makes sense to rebuild the engine unless it needs it.
No money - I might be wrong on this but I think that lower octane fuel has a litte more energy per gallon. So, if your octane is high enough to avoid pre-ignition you get a tiny bit more performance with the cheap stuff.

Listen, the only way an outlet can misbehave, assuming it's not broken or intermittant, is to have higher resistance. If it has higher resistance, it will get warm or hot or make smoke if it is transfering much power. Even if it is smoking while the music is playing it will not effect the sound as long as it is not robbing so much power that the amplifier is prematurely clipping.

There is a genuinely valuable thing to be learned from your listening test. And you will not be the first to learn it. It is, however, not that outlets sound different. The story that I posted to Sean over in "Speaker Wire Science of Psychology" is a true story. Check it out.
If all you say is true on the other threads regarding cable, then we should all just love this outlet since we have been told we will by the salesman. But we don't Please explain why again? Are you saying our minds will fool us one way with interconnects, than another way with power cords, all of which are false perceptions? You may have discovered a another science all together.
I don't know why people dont like this outlet. I know that a common AB comparison mistake is to not have the volumns EXACTLY the same.

Our ears are, of course, esential in determining what gear to use. Everyone, believers and non believers alike, listens to their systems. I am suggesting that there is a real phenomenon that allows us to hear differences even when comparing identical gear. The fundamental difference between the two camps here is that one group believes that every time we hear a difference it must be real. The other camp says that psychology plays a part and we have to use our reasoning ability to help avoid pitfalls in the listening process.

ewe are ignoring the camp that believes there is *no* sonic difference whatsoever, if it can't be quantified. if ewe look closer, i tink yule find that a great many of those ewe put in yer 1st camp in fact reside in the second it's yust that they are willing to accept that a sonic difference *can* exist, even tho it can't be measured...

regards, doug s.

Good post Dhougg. Please put me in your 2nd camp. Stevemj; I don't know how many ICs, power cords, and spkr. cables I've rejected for sonic reasons-- and many were high bucks name brand products-- just the kind of "stuff" that you say I should like (and buy). How do you explain that? BTW, my "wires" are name brand mid to higher priced, and I also rejected some lower price stuff. Do you think that you're the only person who knows about the "placebo effect"? Are you just trying to educate us gullible audiophiles? Most audiophiles can easily tell the difference between "snake oil" and the "real deal" just by listening, can't you?. I really don't see that you're accomplishing anything here with your repetitious maunderings except spilling a lot of pixels. Cheers. Craig.
Garfish - I am not only accomplishing nothing, you will be pleased to know, I am less and less interested in accomplishing anything here.
Well, if you get tired enough maybe you will have time to listen to some cables and power cords instead of reading about them.