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post #1 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 07:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Are there any sonic benefits to getting a power conditioner? They are quite expensive, and I just wonder if there are any other benefits besides protecting your equipment?
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post #2 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 07:59 AM
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Are there any sonic benefits to getting a power conditioner?

No, No visual benefits either.
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post #3 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 08:27 AM
 
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Originally Posted by SAM64 View Post

No, No visual benefits either.

Says who? My APC H10 has several nice blue LEDs that look cool as he11.

cheers,

AJ
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post #4 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 08:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tweaked05 View Post

Are there any sonic benefits to getting a power conditioner? They are quite expensive, and I just wonder if there are any other benefits besides protecting your equipment?

No guarantee that they will actually protect your equipment from every possible difficulty.

If protection against surges is your goal, then a whole-house surge protector installed by a professional electrician may actually cost less and do more.
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post #5 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 09:24 AM
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None.
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post #6 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 09:28 AM
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Says who? My APC H10 has several nice blue LEDs that look cool as he11.

I guess if you think hell is cool, you'd like blindingly bright blue leds as well.
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post #7 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJinFLA View Post

Says who? My APC H10 has several nice blue LEDs that look cool as he11.

cheers,

AJ

good luck arguing with sam on this subject. I wouldnt even waste my breath. If you like it, that's all that counts.


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post #8 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 11:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Ok, well it would seem at my level that a power conditioner would be overkill since I don't have thousands invested in pre/pro's and such. Thanks for the responses guys.
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post #9 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 11:39 AM
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My projector flashes and dims without a ups or my monster power power conditioner. I won't argue sonic benefit because it maybe entirely placebo, but you can't argue against it eliminating a dimming effect that is easily seen and repeated without it in the line. I think mine was easily worth the several hundred I paid for it in an area like where I live with unreliable power. The ups at the church I service right by my house had over 100 power outages in a four week span according to the ups software. The total outage time was only just over an hour so most of those outages or blips were extremely short. The implications of the warranty also offer peace of mind.

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post #10 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 11:46 AM
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My projector flashes and dims without a ups or my monster power power conditioner.

Your projector has problems.
the regulated supply feeding the bulb is obviously faulty.
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post #11 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 12:28 PM
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I will say some power conditioners have a benefit if you have a high end system AND a lot of power line noise.

But for the average HT and audio system they don't do much for their price.

The very high end conditioners that completely regenerate the AC power are in theory very good. Question is if you need power that pure, then your components power supplies aren't very good at all.

OTOH, UPS system do offer varying degrees of protection fome basic spkies to full power outage ride through but these do nothing to improve audio quality.

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post #12 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 02:12 PM
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Let me state the obvious; If one has power issues that create problems, audible or otherwise, and a power product can alleviate these issues, then yes, it can be beneficial.

I'd go big or stay home however. Unless you roll your own (which is advisable *), go with something serious like Torus products, and make sure you get one that will not encounter any limiting, so big or stay home. Expensive, but the Plitron transformers are superb in the manner in which they work.

* Check out this link for a DIY iso power rig Thomas, from The Cult built. Here's a thread at The Cult describing these efforts.

I've had good luck with balanced/iso home brewed solutions. IMO, the regen type stuff has been problematic, wrt lifespan etc. UPS's fail,...eventually everytime.
My 2 cents

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post #13 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 03:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post

My projector flashes and dims without a ups or my monster power power conditioner.

Pretty good chance that it is on its way to having problems that even a power conditioner won't fix!

Every audio component has its own power conditioner - its called the power supply. Some of them are very impressive - they will provide consistent performance as the line voltage varies over a wide range.
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post #14 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 04:18 PM
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Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Pretty good chance that it is on its way to having problems that even a power conditioner won't fix!

Every audio component has its own power conditioner - its called the power supply. Some of them are very impressive - they will provide consistent performance as the line voltage varies over a wide range.

nah kansas city missouri's power is just that bad. It's happened on my last two projectors.

Panasonic PT-L500U
http://www.projectorcentral.com/Panasonic-PT-L500U.htm

and

Pansonic AX-200U
http://www.projectorcentral.com/Panasonic-PT-AX200U.htm

I now have a Epson 8350 and haven't even tried it without a UPS or monster power conditioner, but the other projectors were both under 2K hours - I purchased new and from the beginning they exibited this trait on and off the UPS/power conditoner.

Almost like an autoiris function that wasn't working properly. I put it on the conditioner and problem resolved. I take it off and problem back.

Light bulbs rarely last anywhere near their stated life at my house, they constantly die and have to be swapped out. I blame that on KC power issues too.

The UPS worked ever so slightly better than the power conditioner as far as I could tell - like the projector never dims with UPS, and only very rarely dims with power filter - once in a great while. By contrast it regularly dims with outlet power - multiple times per movie. The power has gotten better over the last year or so it seems, lately I'm always seeing 121 volt's + from the wall. Sometimes as high as 126 volts for days and weeks on end. I also trust that monster power unit because I happened to be in my theater room during a lightning storm. The power went out momentarily (all our power lines are still above ground here and the wires have tree limbs interwoven) and when the power came back on I saw the Monster Power abnormal voltage light came on and the LCD display flashed 320ish range volts from the wall momentarily as everything in the house powered back on. I lost a few light bulbs in that storm, but none of my home theater equipment was damaged, everything through the monster power unit had a bit of a delayed start while the lights and such came back on immediately - everything worked perfectly and still does -- had I not had that monster power unit in the line and 320 volts came through the line ---- would my stuff still be okay? I don't know - but I'm glad I didn't have to find out. I may give the thing more respect than it deserves - but there is no denying the projector issue. I had 1800 hours on the L500U when I sold it, and 1500 hours on the AX200U when I turned it over to a friend - both work fine otherwise. With my experiences I'd probably buy another Monster Power conditoner or another Smart APC if/when mine die, even if I was in an area with no known power issues. I have a second APC 1500VA Smart UPS I use on my computer. I've hosted a lot of LAN parties over the years and when we've tripped the circuit occassionally somebody would lose hardware - network cards, sound cards - the like. Nobody in any of the parties I've attended or hosted (probably 40 +) ever lost any hardware when they were connected to a UPS. True stories from my experience - thus I'm a pretty strong advocate for these devices. I like Smart UPS with true sine waves if you are going to go the UPS route...

I use the Monster power HTS 5100 MK3 for all my hometheater gear.
http://www.monstercable.com/productdisplay.asp?pin=3260

and a Smart APC 2200 VA for my sump pump and projector.
http://www.apc.com/products/resource...se_sku=SUA2200


My friends who regularly went to LAN parties became firm believers in UPS units too - as they saw and experienced computer hardware dying on occassion when circuits tripped.

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post #15 of 64 Old 02-13-2012, 09:37 PM
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Educate yourself, this is an area full of BS and lack of agreement on what to measure and what effect it has. My power pages http://www.acousticfrontiers.com/Why...Grounding.html are a good start, once you've read them check out the linked references for more. There definitely is an audible and visual effect from a well engineered product, but I do agree protect first, then worry about performance if funds allow.


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post #16 of 64 Old 02-14-2012, 04:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nyal Mellor View Post

Educate yourself, this is an area full of BS and lack of agreement on what to measure and what effect it has. My power pages http://www.acousticfrontiers.com/Why...Grounding.html are a good start, once you've read them check out the linked references for more. There definitely is an audible and visual effect from a well engineered product, but I do agree protect first, then worry about performance if funds allow.

I'll take issue with a general problem and a specfic problem.

Generally, I don't see anywhere that your site actually makes a case for direct audible improvements due to the use of any of these various band aids.

Specifically, I take exception with the following:

"All amplifiers, except Class A devices, draw current in response to the music waveform. 'Flat topping' restricts current delivery, leading to reduced dynamics, loss of articulation, bass extension and an anemic, uninvolving overall presentation."

All amplifiers have power supply capacitors that store power when needed and release it as needed to meet the needs of the amplifier. It is axiomatic that the current drain from the power source will not be constant or even necessarily sinusoidal over the power input and signal output cycle. If anything, flat topping and increased harmonic content increases the effective capacity of power transformers since they are primarily limited at frequencies below the line frequency and actually increases for low order harmonics.

Minor decreases in amplifier power output have few if any audible effects since few home audio amplifiers are actually run at or near to their limits.

I've tested power amplifiers with vastly reduced power line voltages and found that other than the expected loss of maximum output power, many remained linear at reduced but still useful power levels down to as little as 20% of rated power line voltage.
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post #17 of 64 Old 02-14-2012, 10:42 AM
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Originally Posted by FOH View Post

* Check out this link for a DIY iso power rig Thomas, from The Cult built. Here's a thread at The Cult describing these efforts.

Good luck

Nice build. On my site there is a whole house version using a surplus 480/240v building transformer.

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post #18 of 64 Old 02-14-2012, 03:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Glimmie View Post

Nice build. On my site there is a whole house version using a surplus 480/240v building transformer.

Yes, I've taken the time to check it out a few times.

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post #19 of 64 Old 02-14-2012, 10:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Tweaked05 View Post

Are there any sonic benefits to getting a power conditioner? They are quite expensive, and I just wonder if there are any other benefits besides protecting your equipment?

I purchased a Monster (gasp!) 1800 power conditioner/center for a couple hundred mostly for the outlets....nice to plug everything in to it and only one out.


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post #20 of 64 Old 02-14-2012, 11:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Glimmie View Post

Nice build. On my site there is a whole house version using a surplus 480/240v building transformer.

I'm guessing it's an EI core?

I have a pair of 'rated at' 2.5kVA open frame EI core Tx's to use in mine. As they're 50kg each, I think they're a tad conservatively rated.
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post #21 of 64 Old 02-14-2012, 11:54 PM
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My Belkin PF60 turns all my shitte on and off in order. It brought power to one central spot in my stand and the blue light dims down to where it is not obtrusive. It does that well. It is a great mutli outlet power strip.
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post #22 of 64 Old 02-15-2012, 05:40 PM
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Lest anyone not believe that KC power is as bad as I said. I'm at the church tonight doing some maintenance on the server and pulled up the CyberPower software.

Here is what I see.

"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"

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post #23 of 64 Old 02-16-2012, 05:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post

Lest anyone not believe that KC power is as bad as I said. I'm at the church tonight doing some maintenance on the server and pulled up the CyberPower software.

Here is what I see.

That is utterly appalling and the managers and engineers at your supply authority should be shot, especially if that is in an urban area. I ran a logger in my supply here for a while and took it off because I never had an undervoltage (set at 222V IIRC) or an outage in the test period. I've only had one unscheduled outage in my area in the 3 years I've been here and that was due to a car hitting a pole, the HV conductors clashing and the protection operating at the local sub.

However, undervoltage and loss of supply are not what power conditioners are typically supposed to 'fix'. These purportedly deal with noise on the line.
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post #24 of 64 Old 02-16-2012, 06:42 PM
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ha - yeah it's bad --- and it is urban, It's about a 50-60 year old section of Kansas City, Mo. The church is within a couple miles of my house and though I'm not sure if we are on the same actual grid or not - my power is bad too. KC needs some improvements in a lot of areas.

I laughed when I started receiving the water company's quarterly mailings and their motto seriously was this: "One boring improvement at a time"
I think it was literal - all over the place in my area there are water mains that have broken and they cut out the concrete and fix the main and then put gravel in and a road hazard blinking sawhorse type stand and leave it there for a year or two. ha. It makes me chuckle. Across state line in Kansas - they abhor us. It's very apparent when you cross state lines. Power wires dissappear underground, the road goes from pothole laden to smoother than a roller rink. You go from a relatively poor county (Jackson) to one of the richest counties in the entire country (Johnson county) when you cross state line into Kansas.

Here's an aerial view of the church where the CyberPower software was inventorying all those issues. You'll see it's got a lot of people/houses.
http://www.bing.com/maps/default.asp...916&FORM=MIRE1

I don't have the software loaded up for my Smart UPS units. Maybe I should install the software and watch to see if I'm on the exact same grid...

"Without subs it's just background music - with subs it's the main event!"

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This is back down in price again.....http://www.buy.com/prod/belkin-purea...207514357.html
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post #27 of 64 Old 02-16-2012, 09:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post


I'll take issue with a general problem and a specfic problem.

Generally, I don't see anywhere that your site actually makes a case for direct audible improvements due to the use of any of these various band aids.

Specifically, I take exception with the following:

"All amplifiers, except Class A devices, draw current in response to the music waveform. 'Flat topping' restricts current delivery, leading to reduced dynamics, loss of articulation, bass extension and an anemic, uninvolving overall presentation."

All amplifiers have power supply capacitors that store power when needed and release it as needed to meet the needs of the amplifier. It is axiomatic that the current drain from the power source will not be constant or even necessarily sinusoidal over the power input and signal output cycle. If anything, flat topping and increased harmonic content increases the effective capacity of power transformers since they are primarily limited at frequencies below the line frequency and actually increases for low order harmonics.

Minor decreases in amplifier power output have few if any audible effects since few home audio amplifiers are actually run at or near to their limits.

I've tested power amplifiers with vastly reduced power line voltages and found that other than the expected loss of maximum output power, many remained linear at reduced but still useful power levels down to as little as 20% of rated power line voltage.

Hi, it's hard to argue a case in words for something that you have to get a demo on to understand for yourself the potential improvements. Now don't get me wrong I am not saying they are ground shaking earth moving improvements, and indeed far less than what you get as a result of improving your room acoustics, but in the context of a well optimized system good power conditioners are worth the investment in my opinion.

On the specific subject you mention you may well be right in that the shape of the current waveform is not important. Indeed this is what the Torus engineer said when I showed him the curves of the current draw from equipment connected to the PS Audio P5 and the Torus. He said that the area under the curve was more important than the shape of the curve. I can post the graph if you'd like...

There is definitely a music dependent current draw though, it's easy to see with a fast update scope and a current probe on the input side of an amplifier fed a music signal.

But inspite of your general and specific points did you think the pages were a useful summary? I tried to keep them as factual as possible...


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post #28 of 64 Old 02-17-2012, 10:51 AM
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I'm guessing it's an EI core?

I have a pair of 'rated at' 2.5kVA open frame EI core Tx's to use in mine. As they're 50kg each, I think they're a tad conservatively rated.

Most likely. It's a potted unit so I'm not sure but I don't thing any US manufacture uses toriods in dry distribution transformers.

It's a 10kva nameplate running 480/240. So in theory I can draw 5kva at half voltage. I know I can push it to 6kva if needed as these things are typically rated for 110% duty.

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post #29 of 64 Old 08-21-2012, 08:26 AM
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I have a quick question. My home theater is currently plugged into a Running Springs Audio Haley unit. My Motorola HD DVR is not plugged into the Haley. I live in South Florida and the power seems to go out briefly every day or two. It takes several days for the tv guide information to repopulate in my HD DVR (which is a pain). I was looking into getting an APC UPS just for the HD DVR(to ride out the brief power losses), and I started wondering about plugging the Haley into it as well. Any thoughts?
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post #30 of 64 Old 08-21-2012, 09:36 AM
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Originally Posted by circumstances View Post

I have a quick question. My home theater is currently plugged into a Running Springs Audio Haley unit. My Motorola HD DVR is not plugged into the Haley. I live in South Florida and the power seems to go out briefly every day or two. It takes several days for the tv guide information to repopulate in my HD DVR (which is a pain). I was looking into getting an APC UPS just for the HD DVR(to ride out the brief power losses), and I started wondering about plugging the Haley into it as well. Any thoughts?

The more power you extract from a UPS, the shorter the time it will provide power when line power goes away. How long are your power interruptions?
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