Daimbert, this is a great opporunity for you as a newbie to search the archives. This topic has been discussed thoroughly from the house breaker panel, to dedicated lines, to outlets and outlet covers, power transformers, power conditioners, contact paste and power cords.
Getting a PS Audio UPC 200 tomorrow ...will let you know.
i would ask you this,what made you think you needed help with power issue's in your system to begin with,i mean are you trying to correct a noticed issue within the way the system sound's or looking for a dramatic sonic benifit as some have described.
unless you hear something that you attribute to power issue's then i would reccomend to either be happy with the gear you have or upgrade a component instead with the cash.
Let me see if I can point you in the right direction. I have a similar situation with space constraint. I have a 2-channel set-up, with a TV and cable box in the same room (not connected into the audio set-up). Unfortunatley these are not dedicated and won't be since I rent. In fact, one 20 amp circuit breaker controls 7 duplex outlets, including two in my listening room.
I also live in CA which is electricity hell. Lots of surges and noise on the lines, not just from the lines coming into my home, but since I live in a triplex, my immmediate neighbors. Here is what I have done so far:
1. I use a Running Springs Audio Haley for power conditioning that is plugged into the duplex outlet closest to my system. It has enough outlets for all my equipment, including the amp, is non-coloring and non-current limiting.
2. I use a RidgeStreet Audio Z-der block on the power conditioner. This is a power correction device that ensures among other things, that current does not lag behind voltage.
3. For the TV and cable box I use a PS Audio Ultimate Outlet that is plugged into the another duplex outlet in the room.
4. I just ordered the Electroclear products from Quantum. I am going to put these on the spare outlet on the duplex my refrigerator is plugged into, the duplex outlet closest to where the power comes into house, and on the spare outlet on the duplex that my power conditioner is plugged into.
5. Lastly, I am looking into a variac. This is a device that allows you to monitor the voltage coming in from the wall and adjust it to match the voltage of the audio component(s). Implementing this will be a bit of a challenge, but it is doable. The issue is I have to find a quiet variac so that it doesn't add to the problem while trying to solve it.
Power regeneration devices like APS, Exact Power and PS Audio operate similar to a variac in that they take the power from the source and regenerate it to 120 volts. Some of these devices like the PS Audio allow you to set the voltage. The problem with these is that they can be current limiting, limit the number of available watts, and/or color the sound.
As Tvad stated this is a good time to do some research here. First, establish a budget, then read about the various types of solutions, then try before you buy. Many of these vendors offer trial periods on their products, especially PS Audio. Take them up on their offer and see how the products affect your situation.
It is simply the garbage in garbage out principle.
Electricity come in from the wall, and your audio gear converts that electricity, which goes to your speakers causing them to move and create sound. If the electricity has a sound already (noise), then that will affect the conversion that happens in the audio gear.
Plug a television into the same wall plug as a refrigerator while it is running and see what happens to the picture and the sound.
I used a PS Audio UPC 200 in my system on and off for about 12 months; did not like it. My system sounded more veiled with the UPC 200 than without it; so I sold it.
If garbage in garbage out is followed to its logical conclusion, then it would apply to power conditioners too.
Absolutely yes! I have used a power conditioner for a few years and the improvement is very audible. I would like to mention that some gear for example like digital amps can benefit even more from power conditioning. On the other hand I have read that some Manufacturers like Sonic Frontiers claim that power conditioning can actually damage their tube preamps. But so far I have not had any problems.
Tarsando flawed logic. The conclusion rests on the premise that the power conditioner does nothing and power from the outlet is always 110-120w, 60 hz. I worked for a power company and I can tell you this is not the case. However, clean power is clean power and paying a massive sum for "cleaner than clean" would be better spent on more music. At least pretend your sound system is a computer, provide clean power accordingly.
Wow thanks for the replies.
BigJoe- I actually do not know what kind of sound/problem occur in relation to power.
Only real reason I am considering this is mainly due to the building I live in. It's 95 years old in the bronx, NYC. Always have had power issue, surges etc. I mean the breaker that serves my room also serves 5 outlets and 4 light switches. The wires are so old that they have fabric insulation instead of what you see in normal BX cable. All this must compromise something no.
Also the fact that I connect both my computer system/audio t.v must have an effect on the sound I am hearing no? I am pretty much in the same boat as Clio09.
I don't plan to buy one anytime soon especially considering the good ones cost 700+. If there were some in the 200 dollar range that would do anything I would consider it. What I do plan to do is finish modding my SB2 and getting a better power supply and upgrading my amp pretty soon. I hear to much background hiss in my music. Don't know if this is related to the amp or source. Thanks guys.
JW94055. Maybe so. But the power supply components in a piece of audio gear are not themselves passive and surely alter the ac significantly (changing it to dc if nothing else) and I believe that most of the power conditioner advocates ignore the function of real world power supplies. I do nothing whatsoever to the power coming into my pc and I can see no adverse effects from that policy. (I never worked for a power company, so you've got me there in terms of real world experience).
Yes $200 can do something even brand new. For $200 you can buy two Blue Circle BC86Mk3 power pillows. The Mk3 versions have double the filtering of the older models, so they are as good as four of the older power pillows.
Sorry for the sales pitch, but I happen to sell them simply because they work, period. Check other threads.
You can also contact Phil at Sonic Spirits who is your local Blue Circle dealer. Maybe he can let you demo a pair. For $300 can get you the basic BC606 Music Bar which is a power bar with the filtering of 2 of those power pillows.
I use a P300 on all of my front end components and I have had many friends come over and do the with and without test. Clearly it makes a huge improvement to have it in the system.
Tarsando. Thank you for your respectful response. There are far too many immature exchanges on the internet. Daimbert, please look into an inexpensive power conditioner line,
Tripplite. You won't be able to brag to your audio friends and some may even snicker, but the cost/benefit ratio is fine indeed.
I second Sugarbrie's recommendation for the Blue Circle BC86Mk3 power pillows (and I'm not a dealer), simply because they work; and perhaps not so simply, because theyre parallel and do not limit current. Id also suggest that you replace the builder grade outlet with a Porter Port
at $36 theyre a tremendous bang for the buck.
I have used the Audio Magic Mini Stealth AC purifier for a couple years. I ABd with and without it for all my components and it always made a significant improvement. The sound with the purifier was always cleaner, clearer, and just plain purer. It seemed to "strain out grunge". My power cords are all top rated JPS Labs. Even my 3500 dollar Aluminata PC sounded better plugged into the mini stealth. I am a big fan of power purification! The mini stealth or stealth with more duplexes can be purchased on Audiogon used for a fraction of the cost new. I am sure there are other good AC conditioners out there. I do not think you have to spend big bucks, however.
Here's a question do I need a plain power conditioner or a conditioner with filters. My place so old I don't even know if we have common ground built into the building.