shunyata or nordost power cords? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 110 Old 12-10-2004, 08:59 PM - Thread Starter
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what power cords would you choose.... shunyatas or nordost and why? i have tried the nordost vishnu and really like the sound. shunyata has some good reviews as well so i would like comments/suggestions. i have already tried transparent, cardas, etc. to my dislike. help me out. thanks.

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post #2 of 110 Old 12-10-2004, 09:19 PM
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Boy did you pick the wrong place to ask that :-)

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post #3 of 110 Old 12-10-2004, 10:08 PM
 
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Boy did you pick the wrong place to ask that
Boy do I ever agree BUT since you asked, personally I use all Nordost Valhalla AC power cords in my system.

OK I think I hear the flood gates opening now--have we been down this path before or what?
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post #4 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 02:22 PM
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I would also go with the Nordost ac power cord very good cable.
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post #5 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 02:35 PM
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post #6 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 03:08 PM
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The correct answer of course is to put on a blindfold, and let a friend switch back and forth between a few different power cords without telling you which one, including some inexpensive ones. If you cannot pick out a difference between any of them, save your money and buy the inexpensive ones. If you can, then use the one you like the most. It is extraordinarily unlikley that you will be able to pick out one from the other.

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post #7 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 03:32 PM
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And if you do go with the expensive ones, you might as well re-do the AC circuit all the way back to the service entrance, and maybe, even beyond. What's the point of using these cables if they are plugged into 50-100ft of standard Romex or NM? :)

P.S. Flood gates have opened...:p
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post #8 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 03:42 PM - Thread Starter
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and here comes the water......
no seriously, i have tested many power cables and have found differences in all of them. i've tried all ranges from cardas and transparent and decided that nordost vishnu sounded best in my particular setup (didn't try valhalla). now, i stuck with transparent references's on my esl speakers because i didn't like the others. sound was too muffled whereas the forwardness of the transparents were nice to have on the speakers. the nordost sounded sweet on the amp (i am also using nordost speaker cables and interconnects). just wondering what kind of sound shunyata's put out. i like the nordost for their speed, accuracy and of course, openness. my speakers are very transparent and extremely revealing, which many other speakers are not. i believe this to be the main reason many hear power cord/cable differences whereas others do not. any one use shunyatas or tested them out?

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post #9 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 04:22 PM
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just wondering what kind of sound shunyata's put out.
They don't put out any sound, they are power cables :-) They get the power from the wall to the device. Unless you've picked out one from another without knowing which ones you were listening to, you really don't know if you can hear a difference or not. It's way too easy to believe you hear a difference when you think you should or want to. Take the challenge yourself and prove to yourself whether you can hear a difference or not.

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post #10 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 04:44 PM
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I have several of the Shunyata products including a Hydra, several of the Taipan and sidewinder power cables, and the Lyra speaker wire and Aries interconnects. My system is far from that of OBGYN's or some of the others that post on this site but I do have ESL Speakers and an Audio Research front end so please take my comments in that context. I started out as a non-believer in power products and I used Panamax for their lightning protection and "5 million dollar" guarantee. My local shop started talking to me about the Shunyata products and I was really not interested, but he insisted that I take them home and give them a try. I have to say that I was very impressed with the results and that original trial has led to my purchase of the other products listed above. The power conditioners, once broken in), had by far the greatest effect on my system and you could not get my hydra out of my house without a serious fight. I have not ventured into the high end power cables, python etc, as it did not make sense to me to have a power cable that was almost 50% of the cost of my pre-amp but I do think it says something when Halcro equips their amps with the Shunyata products and several of the big recording studios (Lucas, David Gilmore, etc.) also use their power cords. Based on my experience I think they would be worthy of your time for a demo. I have no experience with the Nordost cables but I am sure that they are among the best or OBGYN would not have them in his system, I have taken his advice in the past and found it to be excellent.

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post #11 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 06:26 PM - Thread Starter
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thanks. yeah, i will try to find a local dealer and demo some of them. what i saidd earlier about the traits of the cable, i did not intend to say that they provide a sound. aftermarket power cords are always better than the stock ones provided by the manufacturer. some power cables provide a more forward and detailed impression as opposed to some that muffle the true sound. again, i always do blind testiig with a friend and as stated, my esl speakers do not lie with differences. and these differences are NOT subtle. i chose the vishnu over other brands but before i buy it for my components, i want to see how shunyatas compare.

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post #12 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 06:40 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by keenan
And if you do go with the expensive ones, you might as well re-do the AC circuit all the way back to the service entrance, and maybe, even beyond. What's the point of using these cables if they are plugged into 50-100ft of standard Romex or NM? :)

P.S. Flood gates have opened...:p
Interesting, because that is exactly what I have done. I have the audio end of my room on 6 dedicated lines each wired with single stranded 6 gauge Romex wire all the way back to the service entrance and each grounded at the street
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post #13 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 06:43 PM
 
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I have no experience with the Nordost cables but I am sure that they are among the best or OBGYN would not have them in his system, I have taken his advice in the past and found it to be excellent.
Thanks--I appreciate your kind comments however, my prediction is that this thread will steadily go down hill as will be evident by future posts of protagonists (subjectivists) and antagonists (objectivists) :(
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post #14 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 06:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by oneobgyn
Interesting, because that is exactly what I have done. I have the audio end of my room on 6 dedicated lines each wired with single stranded 6 gauge Romex wire all the way back to the service entrance and each grounded at the street
I did something similar as well, ran a whole new 6 gauge circuit dedicated to the electronics, redid the neutral-earth ground bonding and the earth ground itself, although I used 12 gauge from the sub-panel to the outlets. With this re-wiring I have absolutely no hum or any sort of audible line induced noise anywhere within my system. Well worth the time and effort.

How did you get the 6 gauge wired to the outlets, that's some pretty thick stuff to be dealing with?
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post #15 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 07:28 PM - Thread Starter
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if you don't mind, exactly what did you do with the neutrals and ground. did you add a run of 6 gauge wire from your panel (dedicated, with its own breaker) to your subpanel... where more outlets are fed? if iiunderstand correctly, since i am currently wiring and am using 8 gauge romex for outlets. want to know secrets of how to keep hum away. thanks.

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post #16 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 07:31 PM
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6 gauge copper is still easily bendable. Shouldn't have been too difficult to run if the walls were open.

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post #17 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 07:46 PM
 
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6 gauge copper is still easily bendable. Shouldn't have been too difficult to run if the walls were open.
As Dr Grant states, the 6 gauge although very thick is malleable. It was brought up from the service panel inconduits through the walls to the AC outlets which BTW were also specially ordered for me by Jim Weil of Sound Application. It was quite a chore for him to make the terminations at the AC outlets
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post #18 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 08:04 PM
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The power you're feeding your equipment has managed to some how survive the trip through several hundred miles of industrial grade steel and copper wire with crimped-on and bolted-on jumpers, fittings, and hardware, some of which is loose and/or corroded, and is interconnected with literally millions of other cables going other places, and has been through transformers, substations, surge suppressors, and who knows what else.

You're trying to tell me that the last six feet of power cable is going to make up for all THAT?!?!? Or the last sixty feet, or hundred? Upgrading your whole house's wiring may enhance the internal connectivity of your house and improve your safety factors, but there's no way it's going to make up for the rest of the distribution system's faults.

Pardon me while I pick up my jaw off the floor and shake my head in disbelief, yet once again.

I believe in the high end. I play that game. But some tweaks are totally ludicrous, speaker cables and interconnect cables are radically overpriced
and their effect is usually overstated (after all, it is your wallet talking...who'd blow five grand on a set of cables and then would admit that they aren't really better in any positively noticeable way?), but by far the worst single
offender is the power cable racket.

I'm going to go way out on a limb here and state categorically that if your power cable is of adequate size to handle your equipment's max current draw, it's as big as you'll ever need and you won't hear any difference from
a bigger cable.

If the cable has filtering circuitry in it, and it makes an audible difference, then
the equipment that it's hooked to has a BADLY designed power supply that
can't properly dispose of whatever hash is on the line that should be filtered
out by ANY well designed power supply.

My Krell power amps use Belden brand factory made cables with hospital
grade connectors on the wall side and 30 amp IEC molded input connectors
on the amp side. I have borrowed an expensive set of power cords and even gone so far as to run one amp each (they're monoblocks) on a different
type of cord.

You know what? It didn't make a damned bit of difference. The 1000 dollar
power cords weren't at all better than a fourteen dollar Belden cable.

Incidentally, my speakers are Aerial 10Ts and the speaker cables are Vampire ST2s and Kimber 8PRs. (Biwired, and neither cable set cost me more than 50 bucks via the used market.) This system is good enough that I should have
heard a difference if there was a difference that could be heard.

The emperor has no clothes, sorry. Big dollar power cables are a waste of
big dollars. In my experience.


CJ
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post #19 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 09:40 PM
 
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Predictably the dam is open

Well CJ--as I stated for me it is not the last 6 feet but everything from my service panel in. Was that simple enough for you?
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post #20 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 10:49 PM
 
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I believe in the high end. I play that game.
I'm not so sure
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"My Krell power amps use Belden brand factory made cables with hospital
grade connectors on the wall side and 30 amp IEC molded input connectors
on the amp side. I have borrowed an expensive set of power cords and even gone so far as to run one amp each (they're monoblocks) on a different
type of cord."
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Now you really have me stumped because I have owned just about every Krell amp made. Yes they come with a really terrific AC power cord BUT it is a dedicated non removeable cord. In fact the only Krell amp(s) that are presently made with the option of a non dedicated AC cord is theKrell TAS or or their other MC amps. So I am curious as to which Krell monoblocks you have that you were able to use an expensive set of power cords.
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post #21 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 11:04 PM
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CM Johnson.... I guess if I took your advise I shouldn't notice a difference from the last two feet of my water line which is hooked up to a Kinetico water purifier. Its a big difference and I wont drink my tap water without it.

What's your response to that?

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post #22 of 110 Old 12-11-2004, 11:12 PM
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CM Johnson.... I guess if I took your advise I shouldn't notice a difference from the last two feet of my water line which is hooked up to a Kinetico water purifier. Its a big difference and I wont drink my tap water without it.
You might want to delete that before you get your head handed to you :-) That's a VERY bad analogy. The water purifier is a filter and is designed to fix the water passing through it. A power cable is just like the pipe up to the filter. It does nothing but pass the power from the plug to the device. The device's power supply is the filter in this case.

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post #23 of 110 Old 12-12-2004, 12:02 AM
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Anthony, are you by chance in Vancouver? You're just the type of guy that needs to turn this cynical nonbeliever into a believer. I'd love to spend some time with you so you could prove to me that cables of any sort make a difference.

Ob- did the stranded 6 gauge cable meet the local electrical code? Just curious, as I've never seen stranded cable that meets the home electrical code (then again, I've never really looked either..:))

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post #24 of 110 Old 12-12-2004, 12:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by oneobgyn
As Dr Grant states, the 6 gauge although very thick is malleable. It was brought up from the service panel inconduits through the walls to the AC outlets which BTW were also specially ordered for me by Jim Weil of Sound Application. It was quite a chore for him to make the terminations at the AC outlets
I'll bet it was, do those outlets have unusually large terminals on them or did he terminate the wire with a reducing lug? I used the PS Audio power ports I think they're called, and they have standard size terminals on them.

Dr. Grant, yes 6 gauge is malleable, but still, to get that stuff terminated at an outlet gotta be a lot work....really curious how Jim Weil pulled that off...

Anthony A., there is really no magic to it, just sound workmanship and materials. I used 6-3 NMS(4 conductors-2 hots, neutral and bare earth ground). 6-3 is capable of a 65 amp draw and my equipment at full blast will not draw that much. Split the feeder into 2-110VAC circuits at the subpanel to supply the equipment using the PS Audio outlets, I like the way they grip the plug blades. Maintained integrity of the neutral and earth(bare) ground on both circuits back to the sub-panel and then on through to the main service panel. Many folks get into trouble here by bonding the neutral and earth ground improperly, this bonding should be done only at the main service entrance and not anywhere else in the system. Proper neutral and earth bonding goes 99% of the way to eliminating ground loops and hum, the rest being good, solid and tight connections, always use the screw terminals on outlets and not the push-in-the-hole clamp style. At the main panel I had to re-do the neutral and earth bonding set-up that was there and that was it. There was a bunch of twisted together leaders which I re-did using a junction block and then sufficient gauge to the service buss.

It may sound a little complicated but it really is very simple once you understand how it works and of course having some experience with in-house wiring doesn't hurt either...:)
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post #25 of 110 Old 12-12-2004, 12:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Curt Palme

Ob- did the stranded 6 gauge cable meet the local electrical code? Just curious, as I've never seen stranded cable that meets the home electrical code (then again, I've never really looked either..:))
I think he said single stranded, meaning 4 solid core strands or wires, I had to go back and re-read that as well...
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post #26 of 110 Old 12-12-2004, 08:04 AM
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oneobgyn, my Krells are KMA-160 monoblocks. They had 30 amp IEC receptacles in them from the day I got them (used market) and I have no reason to suspect that they were retrofitted. I presume them to be stock.

I'm located in central Florida, on the east coast. Anyone who would care to
try a demo run on my system with their expensive power cables (assuming
they have the correct modular IEC 30 amp connector on the amp end, and 120V standard plug on the input end) is welcome to do so. But be prepared
to have your mythology shattered on the anvil of reality.

It can make a difference if the lesser cable consists of conductors of too small
a gauge.

It can also make a difference if the power cord has built-in filtration AND the amp's filtration in the power supply is inadequate. Beyond that...no way.

Speaker cables, I can believe in. To a point, anyway. As the output of the
amp and the speakers are both very low impedance, cables will have an effect there. Interconnects, I can also believe in, to a point. But both of
these markets have more than their share of absurdly priced lengths of cable
that only cost the manufacturer a few bucks a foot to make, but which sell
for a few hundred if not a few THOUSAND times that. Truly, that's a ripoff.

P.T. Barnum would be very amused by the cable market.

CJ
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post #27 of 110 Old 12-12-2004, 10:04 AM
 
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oneobgyn, my Krells are KMA-160 monoblocks. They had 30 amp IEC receptacles in them from the day I got them (used market) and I have no reason to suspect that they were retrofitted. I presume them to be stock
Not to get into a pissing contest with you but I believe that you have answered your own challenge--namely that the AC Power cords that come with the Krell are excellent. When I had my last Krell 750 Mcx's I found that the supplied dedicated power cables were excellent. Krell goes to a lot of trouble of ensuring they supply excellent power cables
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post #28 of 110 Old 12-12-2004, 12:15 PM
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Except that I didn't get any included power cables with my amps...I bought them used and very much ABUSED.

I happen to be the only person in the world, as far as even Krell's service department knows, who owns a pair of Krell monoblocks that were involved in a HOUSE FIRE. They weren't burned in the fire, but they did get hosed down in said fire, and may have been plugged in at the time. So they got drenched with water, fire retardant chemicals, smoke, ash, dust, dirt, grease, grime, and everything else...and then they were left to rot in a shop basement for two years before I came along and bought them for 500 bucks for the pair.

Fortunately, I happen to be quite skilled with a soldering iron and I'm a halfway decent technician in my own right. It took a solid 40 hours of labor on my part to tear the amps down to the bare chassis, scrub, and refinish all the mechanical parts, thoroughly clean and resolder every connection and every lead on every component, and do out-of-circuit testing on every individual driver and output device, but at the end of these two weeks of
hard work (I put in four hours every evening on them, roughly), when I reassembled them and ramped up the voltage via a Variac while monitoring the output on a dummy load with a 'scope, as luck would have it, they came up clean and have been absolutely non-stop trouble free and totally reliable for the past seven years.

It was definitely a worthwhile investment, but I doubt that most people could
have handled a restoration of this type. I just happen to be a sucker for a hard luck story!

The power cords are not what Krell supplied, but apparently they're quite adequate.


CJ
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post #29 of 110 Old 12-12-2004, 12:33 PM - Thread Starter
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keenan, if i understand you clearly then this is what you did.

1.) ran a 6-3 wire from your main panel to the subpanel
2.) bond the neutral and ground of this wire to the subpanel bus bars
3.) use 2 dedicated runs of 12-2 wire to 2 different outlets
3.) the 2 hots are then bonded to the 6-3 wire hots at the subpanel breaker
4.) the 2 grounds and neutrals from the 12-2 runs are bonded at the main panel, on their own dedicated screw at each bus bar, not even passing through the subpanel.

is this correct?

is all of this avoided if i simply install a 200a main panel and not use a subpanel?

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post #30 of 110 Old 12-12-2004, 02:00 PM
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Danger, Danger Will Robinson.
It is absolutely critical if one is going to use high end power cables not to forget the magic fairy dust.
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