Dedicated circuits. Two or three. One for digital gear. One for analog gear including amps, preamp and analog front end. Possibly a third for just the amp(s). Two should do the job. High quality brass outlets like Porter Ports offered here by Albertporter.
The best system sound results from squeaky clean power.
Being a certified tweekgeek, and definitely over the top I would recommend the power be your first focus. There are a number of things to consider, of course the power conditioner, but also dedicated line(s) for your system if possible, outlet quality, noise suppression on open outlets (Quiteline)to name a few.
I would look at racks and vibration after the power.
I would go with power then isolation/vibration control for speakers, amps, the components.
Quality power conditioner first. I suggest, however, plugging your power conditioner into a dedicated outlet.
If I can do it I guess its dedicated lines first.
Thank you all !!
It depends on many factors. AC Lines with AC filtering is a must for a natural sound especially from digital sources. But if you speakers were facing each other then I'd say get your speakers set up properly, etc.
You have already picked out cables and equipment without your AC being treated and that could change what cables and gear you use today. Most system don't have the basics down but will go out and compare cables, cords, and gear. I found it hard to tell some differences between some of these items before I had all of the other items prepard for a system.
So the following is what is needed just to get yourself at the starting line:
1 Dedicated lines with AC filtering - see my thread on caps
2 Equipment isolation, speaker spikes, etc.
3 Room treatment
4 speaker placement
Again, once this is all set up, then you can start to pick out all the rest.
Oh yes I agree, I installed four dedicated-circuits when I built my listening-room addition, and by all means, it does make a difference over a single multi-use circuit. That being said, not everyone is able, or in the position to pay someone a good chunk of change to run additional circuits. At a minimum, that job almost always involves fishing walls, provided that they don't contain any fire-stops or insulation, or cutting into and refinishing drywall or plaster, which can easily turn in to a big messy job. On top of that you have to find a suitable route for the Romex to run back to your breaker panel, which may be a long and difficult distance away from your outlet location. If you can pull it off, then go for it. Sound wise, you won't be sorry.
That being said, I would look at taking the low-cost tweaking approach first and build from there. How much will a set of spikes for your speakers cost? Will it make a difference? Probably. A big difference? Who knows, but usually, no one tweak will make a huge difference like upgrading your pre-amp or power amp(s), though you may read otherwise; however, a combination of tweaks may add up to big difference though. Maybe you can put together a number of reasonable-cost tweaks that do add up to a big difference. Maybe one or more of those tweaks may be with some power conditioning of sorts. I personally prefer the sound of my system with the power amps plugged directly into the wall with no power conditioning, but again each power amp is on it own 20 amp circuit, and you may like it differently than I do. I do condition the digital side, the electronic crossover, and the like. But in any event, good cheap power-line tweak is to toss out your $1.00 contractor-grade wall outlet, and replace it with a decent, but not necessarily an extravagant, outlet receptacle such the 100% brass (no ferrous parts)Pass & Seymour 8200MRI or 8300MRI for about $20.00.
Now here is an important tweak that very few people do that does make a noticable difference. Order yourself a can of Deoxit and disassemble then spray the stuff on all of your connections. If you haven't done that lately, you'll like what you hear once you do.
I second all the above and more. Dedicated circuits and dedicated rooms. Ideally, Digital and Analog should not be in the same room....as contamination is always a possibility ;-)
I've found the following tweaks from "Waler Audio" to be all their cracked up to be, and then some.
- Cyro Silver contact treatment.
- Vivid CD cleaner/treatment.
- Talisman demagnetizer.
- small devices that connect to your speaker terminals. (can't remember what they're called), but they're amazing!
I recently added a device from Environmental Potentials to my electrical panel that had a substantial impact on the sound of my system. Mostly the improvement is in lowering the noise floor and allowing more detail to emerge in a warmer sonic landscape. I'm no electrical engineer so I cannot begin to explain how the thing works but I do know that it provides protection from lightning and other line surges and also filters out hash introduced by any of the circuits feeding/leaving the panel. I do have a dedicated line (20amp) that runs from my new 200amp service about 5 feet to a series of three Porter Ports behind my entertainment center. I also had copper buses installed in the panel. All these updates were incorporated at my direction by the electrician who replaced the service to my house. (BTW, the transformer sits on the pole in front of my house--a bit of luck there). And of course, everything I told the electrician to do came from suggestions made right here on the A'gon so thanks everyone. Hope some of these ideas are helpful--basically I agree, get good power to your gear.
In order of importance, the top ten audiophile tweeks are:
10. Post Fruity Pebbles (an improvement over Cocoa Pebbles)
8. Madrigal Tuning Post-Its
7. Magic Cinder Block (followed closely by the Magic Engine Block, and Magic Hernia Truss)
6. Clever Little Swatch (limited edition Audiophile "Scooby Doo" version)
5. Bedini Clarified Butter (can be used on CD's or in conjunction with the #1 tweek)
4. Otis Cable Elevators (make sure your cables are long enough)
3. Conical ball bearing-topped babinga isolation tips over an inflated bladder submerged in sand, lead shot and flaked metal shavings, with a savory liquid mercury sauce, floating 3mm above a nuclear-spec flat plate, suspended by magnets and airpumps and fairy dust, surrounded by a Vulcan force field.
2. Prefrontal Lobotomy
And the #1 audiophile tweak?...
1. The Perch Anal-B with tube rectalfication (Available 1/07).
1. The Perch Anal-B with tube rectalfication (Available 1/07).
Jax2 (System | Reviews | Threads | Answers)
Damn! Let me be the first in line for The Perch Anal-B with tube rectalfication. I have the original The Perch Anal-B with solid state rectalfication, and I'm looking forward to the tube upgrade. The solid state was mighty stiff rectalfication. Do you know any good NOS rectalfication tubes...preferrably cryo'd?
If you can dedicate, do - and put some Oyaides on the wall to cap it off. If you can't, that's fine too - get a balanced power unit from Equitech or BPT or...
I have also found considerable (but not consistent) gains from various isolation units (eq Aurios, Roller Balls) under source, pre and amp. Not the same for all the units - and even one can make a big difference. Approach this in conjunction with a look at the platform itself - most sound better on a thick chunk of wood, a few on stone. The synthetic shelves are very amazing.
I did all the isolation on my rack shelves which leads me to believe that unless you can get to the really high end, get something sturdy and then start tuning.
Last add has been some Sistrums under my speakers and son of a gun - those help too.
Was does the device from Environmental Potentials do??
Do you need a electrician to install this?
I know you used one, but was it for the Environmental Potentials device you had or all the work in general?
Any info would be great.
It is difficult to tell without knowing what you have. If you live in an old house with noisy electric power, a line conditioner will do a lot of good. If you have TT on a wobbly rack, upgrading the rack will be more important. If there is no obvious problem or weakness in your system, than I will suggest you improve the room before doing other "tweaks".
In line with your thought to try better support for components and speakers, the mini-priced items at Herbiesaudiolab.com are well worth a look (actually, a listen).
To avoid carpet piercing, I support floor standing speakers with Big Fat Black Dots resting on granite or marble tiles from Home Depot. The Dots will surprise you with ability to enable better speaker performance.
The Tenderfoot/feet beneath your components on their existing shelves also are a quick way to upgrade.
Although there is no single answer to what support is the best, these get my nomination for most likely to succeed.
Because these are low cost, money is left over for other ideas already posted.
The ninety day home trial period is enough time for anyone to be sure the results are to their liking.
Is anyone using a Monster AVS2000 with a RGPC 400? If so, do you see / hear any improvements?
Portonyl, I'm using the Monster AVS2000 with the Monster HTPS 7000. I find they do EXACTLY what Monster claims they're supposed to do. There're excellent...
Can anyone with first hand knowledge tell me what kind of mess i will experience when installing dedicated lines.
Thank you for all your help and advise
I had the electrician install an EP2050 "Waveform Correction Absorber". It mounts to the panel. You can read about it at:
This product was designed to protect and purify power for huge, high tolerance computer aided manufacturing equipment and is now being offered for home use. Great company to work with and very interesting product that both protects and purifies without any of the downside effects (and cost) of power conditioners ETC.
Hope this helps.
OEM, it really depends on where your room is in comparison to your main electrical box. For me, I would have to open up the dry wall and snake cable through a lot of wall studs. Both a messy and costly proposition. This is why I am going the AC Regen route. If you are lucky, it may be straight shot. If so, adding dedicated lines is cheap and easy.
Thanks for informing about the EP2050, and ep2000.com
What is the cost for such an item, since you mentioned it is less expensive than the more conventional approaches?
Their website makes it look easier to implement, too.
1) Caig Pro Gold on all of your contacts.
2) Room treatment, the other most important component.
Tboooe,This morning I had my neighbor(a jack of all trades)evaluate my house for dedicated lines.His response was "a big job with costly repairs".So a regenerator is on list.
In the past i've used two RGPC 400,I sold them and bought a BPT2 with Auricaps,Z sleeves etc.Although I felt the BPT to be better then the 400's.I was not satisfied with the BPT in the long run.
Have you auditioned any other Re-gen's beside the PS audio.I have SET amps and listen to analog only and seem to be stuck with my standard 15 amp outlets.
The early R&B you mention,would that be the Moonglows,Harptones and the like.
I appreciate yours and the members input
I'm interested in hearing about power regeneration as well
Dodgealum Thanks for your response I read the info but can't find the price and were to order?
Did you contact them directly or did you buy them from a dealer?
OEM. so it looks like we are in the same boat. The only other AC regen I have tried is the Furman (cant remember which model). I liked the PS Audio more. Given your low power requirements you could pick up a used PS Audio P-500 for $1200 that would power your entire system.
As for old school R&B...good choices. Of course we cant forget Sam Cooke, Jackie Wilson, Mary Wells...
Please let me know if I can offer any more help.
The EP2050 was $500--be sure to mention the recent review on Enjoy the Music to get that price. Deal directly with the manufacturer--I spoke to the owner of the company who designed the circuit and he was very generous with his time--I wish I could remember his name! It cost very little to have it installed by a licensed electrician. I have to say it has made a noticeable improvement to my system. The noise floor has come way down and it eliminated hash that somehow crept into my dedicated line that I really did not know was there until the 2050 was put in place.
If I can comment on the dedicated lines since there is much being said here--I'm not convinced you need to go as far as some would have it. A single 20 amp dedicated line to a quad outlet with some nice Porter Ports is plenty of power for all your AV needs. I can't imagine any hifi system needing more juice than that and running multiple dedicated lines is not only more expensive but also risks introducing hum and noise that may defeat their intended purpose. I think having a dedicated circuit for your hifi system to provide a steady stream of power is a good thing--but you know what they say about too much of a good thing! As to power conditioners and the like, I'm persuaded they alter the sound but I'm not sure they uniformly improve the sound. This may be why so many end up for sale on this site--people end up thinking of them like cables to tweak and adjust the sound. The EP2050 is a whole different approach and, if you are like me--part of the "set it and forget it" crowd--it seems a much better approach.
I'm sure I'll get hammered for this one but what the heck.
Dodgealum,I will be contacting EP shortly,inquiring if their products are right for me.I thank you for your informative input in this and other treads you participated in
Good power and vibration control.
Good power and vibration control.
Agreed...in both audio & love.
Most are not really improvements. There are a number of tweeks out there and the problem is that sure you can hear a differance but is truly an IMPROVEMENT. I have been selling and designing audio systems for over 30 years and Ive heard them all. A truly good tweek is one that consistantly makes an improvement in every system you put it in. Ahh power conditioners, lol I have yet to hear one that improves the sound. I dont recommend them. I do recommend dedicated lined, just make sure you do it correctly. Power cords also do make a consistantly big improvement. To me speaker placement is the single most important tweek or setup anyone can make. It takes time and patience but is well worth the effort. Select the right gear and take your time on the setup. DO that first before trying any tweeks to your system. Good luck and happy listening Kevin
Recently, I have experienced a new problem with some tweaks, they interact. Specifically, my WTC control on the H-Cat and my Halographs have caused me many problems. I ultimately had to remove the two sets of Halographs properly adjust the WTC and then experiment with reintroducing the Halographs.
More recently the Brilliant Pebbles have further complicated the situation. Presently I have been unable to bring one pair of the Halographs into the room. Another tweak, the Shun Mook Mpingo disks have had to all be removed.
Kevin, when you say do the dedicated line correctly, what do you mean? Is there anything specific you are referrring to? I am gettng ready to add 2 lines so I am very curious.
>>More recently the Brilliant Pebbles have further complicated the situation.<<
Try a little Windex or vinegar/hot water to restore the brilliance.
>>Shun Mook Mpingo disks have had to all be removed<<
I replaced mine with Chop Suey disks; they added a little more flavor to the music. Depends on your particular taste.
Since you seem to be into cleaning substances, I suspect that a deep breath of ammonia would give you a more heady experience.
Tbg, I understand where you're coming from.
Establishing component synergy is the first step which we all have taken when voicing our systems to our listening room. I have mixed and matched different equipment support ideas with different components as needed to reach what is for me the overall desired sound for the entire system.
But, as you discovered, when modifying the listening environment,which is what I find happens with BP's, I think if you stay within the confines of one manufacturer's repertoire of tweaks you will have the advantage of a consistent (one source) approach to getting the most benefit from basic room/soundspace tuning.
For visual unobtrusiveness, and excellent audible results, I have had wonderful results with a variety of Machina Dynamica products. Even within one company's bag of tricks it is not certain you need every item available. And, placement within the soundfield has to be experimented with.
If you email privately I would be happy to give some details of using Brilliant Pebbles accompanied by other same source ideas.
Luckily, having more than one system has enabled me to find a place for components or add-on's which do not automatically work and play well together.
Well we know that ammonia has a purpose. Pebbles on the other hand simply take up space and drain your wallet. But I suppose they serve the purpose of the designer quite well in the latter.
Listener57, I will contact you directly, but this suits the purpose of the braying jackass.