Cullen or Audio Art.
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There are hundreds of brands. Are you willing to try them all? When it comes to cords I make it simple - I use either Custom Power Cord Company ( no longer in business ) or Purist Audio on everything.
Perhaps NAD owners could share their experience.
Many appear to like better Pangea cords, they are also relatively inexpensive.
Topten, I would buy used if possible, however, remember, always authticate with factory of the brand you are buying into, I understand your budget, however, I would look into buying a Taralabs model, The One power cable, $600.00 to $800.00 used, most TARA cable's have serial numbers where you can call the factory and authenticate, they also can tell you the month and year the cable was made, I believe you will be happy with the performance of this power cord After 500 hrs of burn in, cheers.
Just one train of advice as pertains to the question, make sure you've evolved your wires, the higher the resolution on the cables the more you will hear differences in power cords. There are a lot of enthusiasts that simply can't hear power cord differences because they have cable weak links that bottleneck the detail that power cords work in. The other thing is a power cord on the amp is the bigger bang for the buck, the preamp does make a difference, just not as big a one, the better your cables the more difference you are going to hear there.
I haven't tried the Tara so I can't comment there.
I used to work people from my suggested entry grade which was usually an improvement, to the mid grades for a few hundred more dollars, they would say what about power cords and I'd tell them not until they were into the upper echelon that would make more performance difference than power cords at that point would. Then I would say they were ready for power cords.
That perspective is the result of hundreds of thousands of dollars in complete cable and equipment lines from the manufacturers, and trying every combination of upgrading possible.
I would try a used Silent Source Signature for under $500. I even try the lower powered one used for Dacs and preamps, if I could not locate a high powered cord.I used one for a while on a low powered amp ( 12 amps} before I bought the Music Reference, and it worked great. Resell it, if it doesn't work for you.
Also, the" Silver Resolution" Signal Cable with upgraded terminals should work. Did you try it,or did you try the Magic cord?
Not surprisingly, out of 12 responses so far in which specific recommendations have been made, by my count 12 different power cords have been suggested (although some more than once).
It appears that the NAD C 356DAC, which is an integrated amplifier that also provides a DAC function, is somewhat unusual in that its IEC connector omits the safety ground pin. Presumably it can do that by virtue of double-insulating the internal AC wiring. But for that reason among others, I would be hesitant to extrapolate the results you are likely to obtain with specific power cords from experiences others may report using those cords on other kinds of components. And perhaps the lack of a safety ground connection has something to do with why the Signal Cable you tried performed poorly.
Lowrider's suggestion of the Cable Company is a good one, IMO. If they have already gotten back to you and were unable to make an application-specific recommendation that gives you confidence, you might try a number of different cords via their lending program.
AL, that's good research on the IEC.
Would a PC with a Screw-off ground pin perform with satisfactory results on the NAD C356DAC?
The Pangea Audio AC 14 XL is a quality cable and has such a feature.
Though I do not have any personal experience with the Signal PC, power cord, I do have experiences with PC cable burn in.
Was the Signal cable new? If so how many hours were on the PC before you decided you didn't like how the PC sounded? What type of load did you connect the PC to, to burn it in?
With a $500 budget, I'd suggest looking for a Vitus Andromeda power cable. Threat cable sounds smooth, natural, and yet resolving. I preferred the Andromeda pc to my previous Acoustic Revive Power Reference pc which itself is a good value cable. Also all Vitus Audio's top components are internally wired with Anromeda wire.
You may also look at used power cables from famous cable companies on 2000s era which sells under $200. They are really good. Next step could be to change their AC plugs with even Furutech Fi-15 (Gold or Rhodium) which sells new ~$100 (both Male and IEC). You will get the same result coming from Power cords priced >$1500! This comes from my own experience. So recently I even tried for a couple of weeks the High Fidelity Ct-1 Power cord ($2800), which was a disappointment based on its price tag and compared to my own Semi-DIy power cables ($300-$400).
You could send me pm and whether you need more info.