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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Now that the Harvester thread has run its course does anyone have any comments on Power Conditioners, as opposed to surge devices. I'm thinking along the lines of Richard Gray, PS Audio, Shunyata etc...

I have a Richard Gray 1200, but have not done an A/B for a few years. The RG devices seem to get a wide range of reviews from excellent improvements to did nothing for me. The Shunyata Hydra conditioners get consistently good reviews (NB they have a huge price increase effective Aug 1st - buy now if you need one). In addition I've seen DIY devices that try to emulate the RG/Shunyata devices :scared:

So please post your experiences here, but share your own non-fact or non-experienced opinions with yourself.
 

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I 'll throw my $.02 in here.

Like many encounter when they have numerous pieces of equipment I had a nasty little ground loop problem that was proving difficult to cure.In my search for a good solution I found some good info on the balanced power idea championed by Equi =Tech.They claimed that by feeding components with balanced power AC line noise could be reduced by 16-20 db and the promise of totally eliminating ground loops.

This sounded like it was worth trying so I got hold of a 500va Plitron Toroidal transformer that gave me two 60volt outputs and centre tap ground. I installed it and some MOV' s for surge protection into a metal chassis with 4 duplex AC outlets on the back.The small VA rating of the xformer meant that I could only hook up my source components. My power amps run off a dedicated 20 amp circuit.

Well I can say it absolutey worked like a charm. The nasty hum from the ground loop was gone and only a faint hiss from the amps remained if my ear is placed an inch or two from my speakers.
Also the systems sound is much more consistant from day to day when previous to using the conditioner the treble on somedays would sometimes get strident and brittle then on others it was sweet and detailed sounding.Now it is mostly the later.

So I'm a believer in the balanced AC approach.

For some good reading on balanced power check out http://www.equitech.com/articles/articles.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Fred, I've heard of the balanced power approach but didn't understand it - still don't completely but getting there. Looks like it works in your system, and more cost effective than the commercial route.
If you have any design plans, or links, that you can share with the technical savvy ones please feel free to post them.

As an aside my REL subwoofer was bought in Europe and I run it off a small step up transformer here in the US, REL want $750 to swap out the plate amp - they have refused to sell a replacement transformer to their authorised repairer. I looked at the Plitron website to see if I could buy a transformer directly, they have an incredible high quality range, never bought one - didn't understand it.
 

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Hi Phil ,Yes balanced power did it for me mainly because I had a ground issue.Others may find that it makes little or no difference in their systems.As for design they are easy and relatively cheap to build.A while ago I did see an excellent article on the net about building a DIY unit but can't remember where it was. I will look for it and post it here if I find it.

Thats to bad REL would not allow you to purchase a new transformer.They are a high quality product and not inexpensive so you would think they would be a little more helpful.If it is a toroidal type and you knew the voltage and current rating of the REL transformer then it is quite possible a suitable replacement could be purchased from Plitron.

The chokes you show from Parts Express are the type that are usually used in the power supply of tube amps.On the transistor side of things Musical Fidelity makes several highly acclaimed amps and preamps that use chokes in their power supplies .And Nelson Pass used them in his DIY ZEN amp designs and claims large reductions in audible noise.
 

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I previously posted this message under Surger Suppressors but it is also appropriate in this thread:

I have two of the ABC1200-11 units that I use for my HT system. I bought both of these units on EBAY; $201.05 & $219.95 including shipping.

I also did some research on these units before purchasing and on isolation transformers in general. A good analysis of the benefits, myths, and pitfalls of using isolation transformers can be found at http://www.blackmagic.com/ses/bruceg...solatrans.html. If properly designed, isolation transformers can provide a good degree of common mode and normal mode noise reduction. The efficacy of the Powervar unit in this regard is shown in their test results using an ANSI/IEEE specified noise pulse applied to the input.

In my application, I have the secondary neutrals connected together, the secondary ground leads connected to a cold water pipe, and my equipment load roughly divided between the two Powervar units.

Though I can make no claims about improved system performance, my intent has been that by providing clean power to my equipment I am eliminating another possible source performance degradation.
 

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I have noticed hiss and faint hum from my speakers both from my Carvin amp and from my Denon reciever. I also have a problem with high frequency noise from the speakers when my CRT television is on.

Is a power conditioner the solution to these problems?

Do you have any budget concious recommendations?
 

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I would probably say that a true online UPS would most likely fix your problem. Maybe you could run the rest of your gear through the UPS and then have the TV on a normal circuit if there is no problems with it.
 

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I tried a couple of power strips with line filtering from Best Buy over the weekend.
Dynex DXPC101 ($55) and Dynex PB102 ($130). Neither of those did anything.
 
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