Design A Worthwhile Power Regenerator/conditioner/ups! - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 01-09-2007, 10:56 AM - Thread Starter
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There's been some interesting discussion on this forum lately with some engineers and others regarding pros and cons of power conditioners, regenerators, UPS units, etc.; their utility and effective for audio and home theater; their specs; the extent to which they disclose specs or are accurate in this regard; the extent to which they actually provide surge protection; and that
they may help alleviate problems which you should have solved at the source in the first place, with proper wiring, grounding, etc.

I as always am curious. If you were going to design your own power regenerator/conditioner/UPS for your own use, what features, specs, etc. would you desire, and what do you think would be a reasonable retail consumer price point for the product???

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post #2 of 18 Old 01-09-2007, 11:04 AM
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I'm the first viewer besides the OP!!!

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post #3 of 18 Old 01-09-2007, 11:12 AM
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I'd first define what the problem is. Maybe in your situation Steve, being that you're in Arizona, you might benefit more from improving your earth ground especially if your soil is sandy, drains well, doesn't rain much, etc.

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post #4 of 18 Old 01-09-2007, 11:59 AM
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If audio companies were serious about sound instead of extracting money from people, every piece they made would be battery powered with an outboard recharger that turned off and disconnected the moment you turned your system on. Any stereo product that costs more than about $5000 (and probably a whole lot less) should be battery driven (if anyone were actually serious about sound rather than $$$).

The other option is going all digital where none of it matters, which will be the next realistic evolution and then spurious noise and interference will just be "ignored" by the circuitry.

John
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post #5 of 18 Old 01-10-2007, 02:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post

I'd first define what the problem is. Maybe in your situation Steve, being that you're in Arizona, you might benefit more from improving your earth ground especially if your soil is sandy, drains well, doesn't rain much, etc.

Oh- my earth ground is fine. Here's my AC description:

Our home has a 400 amp electrical service. That service was originally split into two 200 amp panel boxes, one for the East and one for the West side of our home. With the new addition at the East of our home, its 200 amp service panel box has a new 100 amp circuit breaker, which is isolated from the 200 amp panel from which its fed, which feeds a third panel box which contains 19 dedicated 20 amp, 10 guage wire circuits for the Home Theater room only. However, I intentionally wired the Home Theater room and addition lighting, a ceiling dedicated 20 amp circuit (which can but is not presently used for the projector), and the addition air conditioning dedicated 30 amp circuit into the pre-existing East panel box, to help keep noise from those circuits out of the panel box and dedicated circuits for audio and video components. The 19 dedicated 20 amp circuits in the Home Theater room panel box are wall wired same electrical phase, skipping every even circuit in the panel box (otherwise, as in typical panel boxes which don't skip every even circuit, this results in doubling the AC power noise). 4 guage copper wire runs from the Home Theater panel box to a nearby 8 foot copper ground rod well buried in the ground. The house ground is a 4 guage copper wire from the East panel box. And a 4 guage copper wire connects the copper ground rod to the house ground. The Home Theater room electrical outlets are PS Audio Power Ports 20 amp (which replaced Hubbell one grade below hospital grade in August 2002).

Chu, I appreciate that you think I must be imaging audio and video improvements using AC regeneration of PS Audio, especially since I've got such a fine electrical/grounding scheme. That's ok. Think what you want. As long as I'm satisfied. To each his own.

Chu, isn't you idea of the power conditioner being a whole house surge suppressor at the power entry to the home, or power entry to a dedicated home theater room? And perhaps a few dedicated 15 - 20 amp outlets with a star ground? And you don't think any further power conditioning or regeneration is necessary? That's my understanding from your posts here, but I could be wrong, and if so please correct me. Thanks.

"Doug Winsor" used to troll at some AV Forums as "Steve Bruzonsky"! My home theater at:

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post #6 of 18 Old 01-10-2007, 02:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alimentall View Post

If audio companies were serious about sound instead of extracting money from people, every piece they made would be battery powered with an outboard recharger that turned off and disconnected the moment you turned your system on. Any stereo product that costs more than about $5000 (and probably a whole lot less) should be battery driven (if anyone were actually serious about sound rather than $$$).

The other option is going all digital where none of it matters, which will be the next realistic evolution and then spurious noise and interference will just be "ignored" by the circuitry.

Quality battery powered would definitely be the best. I recall a battery powered
stereo preamp at CES about five years ago but hardly anything was said about it.
Battery power apparently adds a lot of cost. What "should" be done vs what is done are different stories.

And frankly, those so many folks who moan and groan even about AC regeneration of a "perfect" 60 Hz sine wave, wouldn't they moan and groan that the money for the battery part of the component was a waste?

"Doug Winsor" used to troll at some AV Forums as "Steve Bruzonsky"! My home theater at:

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post #7 of 18 Old 01-10-2007, 02:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

Quality battery powered would definitely be the best. I recall a battery powered
stereo preamp at CES about five years ago but hardly anything was said about it.
Battery power apparently adds a lot of cost. What "should" be done vs what is done are different stories.

And frankly, those so many folks who moan and groan even about AC regeneration of a "perfect" 60 Hz sine wave, wouldn't they moan and groan that the money for the battery part of the component was a waste?

Battery power is cheap compared to high-end power supplies and AC regenerators. It means a cheap power transformer and smaller/fewer capacitors.

John
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post #8 of 18 Old 01-10-2007, 03:00 PM
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I have no idea how good your earth ground is Steve. Again, if the climate is dry and your soil is sandy and doesn't retain water, then your ground may be good enough to meet NEC but could likely be improved with respect to your electrical devices. I seem to recall you once mentioning something about having poured salty water in the vicinity of your outside grounding rod and spoke about some sort of improvement. If that is indeed the case, then you could look into what's known as electrolytic grounding rods. It's a DIY thing if you're into digging. It drastically lowers the ground resistance and FWIW is typically used by the US Military and even Lucas uses it too. With all due respect Steve, it's nice that you're impressed and satisfied with your electrical layout in your home, but simply because you are, doesn't mean the earth ground is all that hot. Dig down a few feet near your grounding rod and examine the soil conditions. You just may be putting bandaids, and expensive ones at that when a more reasonable and prudent solution exists to whatever your problems are.

Quote:
Chu, isn't you idea of the power conditioner being a whole house surge suppressor at the power entry to the home, or power entry to a dedicated home theater room? And perhaps a few dedicated 15 - 20 amp outlets with a star ground? And you don't think any further power conditioning or regeneration is necessary? That's my understanding from your posts here, but I could be wrong, and if so please correct me. Thanks.

Surge suppression and power conditioning are two different things Steve. I'm a fan of people first addressing the basics which to me means going a bit beyond NEC code. Given the importance you place upon your electronics, why treat their installation like a homeowner when you can model your approach over what a professional or business would choose to avoid potential problems? If you focus on that first you just might find everything is just better. At some point Steve you need to sit back with a nice single malt Scotch and ask yourself, why do some people just not have the problems you have? Is it because of the grounding? Are there simply equipment issues? Why do I need all this stuff but my doctor doesn't?

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post #9 of 18 Old 01-10-2007, 05:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Dr. Chu, so what have you done for your grounding/electrical?

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post #10 of 18 Old 01-11-2007, 05:25 AM
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With battery powered gear you can't choose how to color the sound. I like the sound of AC noise in the line, otherwise bass sounds too heavy. I can tune the noise with Valhalla power cord to boost up the detail. AC noise + Valhalla does something special with the power supply.

I don't like the sound of RFI/EMI noise, it cuts off the highs and lows.
Vibration manipulation doesn't sound that good either, because it emphasizes certain frequencies in the music based on what feet you use, I like to remove the vibrations with multiple steps of isolation to keep it flat.
AC noise changes it from top to bottom without emphasis of frequencies, the more noise the edgier and thinner it sounds like, there is more surface speed instead of low-level speed. With a power conditioner the surface speed is reduced but the low-level detail is improved because of a blacker background.

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post #11 of 18 Old 01-11-2007, 05:50 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ValhallaPC View Post

With battery powered gear you can't choose how to color the sound. I like the sound of AC noise in the line, otherwise bass sounds too heavy. I can tune the noise with Valhalla power cord to boost up the detail. AC noise + Valhalla does something special with the power supply.

I don't like the sound of RFI/EMI noise, it cuts off the highs and lows.
Vibration manipulation doesn't sound that good either, because it emphasizes certain frequencies in the music based on what feet you use, I like to remove the vibrations with multiple steps of isolation to keep it flat.
AC noise changes it from top to bottom without emphasis of frequencies, the more noise the edgier and thinner it sounds like, there is more surface speed instead of low-level speed. With a power conditioner the surface speed is reduced but the low-level detail is improved because of a blacker background.

Now thats a new one. Design a power conditioner with noise on purpose!!!@@@

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post #12 of 18 Old 01-11-2007, 05:59 AM
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You should post your findings on PS Audio's forum as well as AA. If you want to tune the amount of noise in your AC lines, consider buying a lamp that has a dimmer and vary the amount of dimming.

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post #13 of 18 Old 01-11-2007, 06:37 AM
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I have two grounding rods. My soil is fairly clay like and moisture, even during any hot and dry summer months is not an issue. I attribute this to the soil as well as I'm located sort of on the side of a small 'mountain' (not like Ted Kazinsky though!), and water does run downhill. What about your situation Steve?

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post #14 of 18 Old 01-11-2007, 07:12 AM
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Instead of this back and forth on whose grounding approach is better, why not actually measure your ground resistance?
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post #15 of 18 Old 01-11-2007, 11:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post

I have two grounding rods. My soil is fairly clay like and moisture, even during any hot and dry summer months is not an issue. I attribute this to the soil as well as I'm located sort of on the side of a small 'mountain' (not like Ted Kazinsky though!), and water does run downhill. What about your situation Steve?

How exactly are your two ground rods installed? Please don't tell me they are seperated by more than a few inches? If they are and you live in the northeast, you have an impending disaster comming!

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post #16 of 18 Old 01-11-2007, 11:56 AM
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The rods are spaced approximately twice their depth.

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post #17 of 18 Old 01-11-2007, 03:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

Now thats a new one. Design a power conditioner with noise on purpose!!!@@@

Yes, after all the problems are solved it's time to experiment with noise manipulation to color the sound to the better.

If you put the power conditioner between wall and components it's going to reduce the speed, it needs to be put somewhere else.
I want something where you can choose which frequencies of noise you put into the line. There could also be multiwaves of noise that you add randomly into the line, different combinations of noise could give better sound.

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post #18 of 18 Old 01-11-2007, 07:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glimmie View Post

How exactly are your two ground rods installed? Please don't tell me they are seperated by more than a few inches? If they are and you live in the northeast, you have an impending disaster comming!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post

The rods are spaced approximately twice their depth.

I am speechless! But Chu is honest, I give him that.

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