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Discussion Starter #1
Hello Guys,
Can anyone recommend me a good power comditoner in the price range of 50 to 100 dollars. PNKFLYD
 

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Your options are limited in that price range but there are some other things that will work. You could buy a small UPS as the power goes through the battery all the time and that will smooth out the sign wave and filter out most of the noise (they just dont last very long). Another good option is to get yourself a Triplite Isobar as they have filters built in and are a great bargain for the quality you get.
The "real" conditioners are expensive and in my opinion not worth the money.
 

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You will not find a sine wave UPS for < $100. In that price range all you get is a "stepped" sine wave or similar which defeats the purpose of cleaning up any power problems.

pnkflyd, what problem are you trying to solve with a power conditioner?
 

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Why do you feel that you need a power conditioner?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hey Negative Entropy,
When I listen to Sirius with my Onkyo 876-- Polk speaker set up, I always here a lot of crackling sound. So I decided to try the power conditioners. I was looking at the panamax 4400 or the 5100. They are priced a bit but on ebay may be able to get a 5100 for 229. I know it is a bit expensive but I am crazy about a good sound from my system. Any opinion on which I should get ?
 

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Hey Negative Entropy,
When I listen to Sirius with my Onkyo 876-- Polk speaker set up, I always here a lot of crackling sound. So I decided to try the power conditioners. I was looking at the panamax 4400 or the 5100.
Save your money, it wont help. The crackling your hearing is most likely bad reception not a power issue. particularly if it only happens with Sirius and the other inputs are clean.
 

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Tony is absolutely correct. Power conditioning is not going to help.
 

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Power conditioners are designed to give "clean" power to your system, but cracks and pops are most likely not associated with dirty power, so you might want to look for a different solution. I, personally, do believe in power conditioners, but for most people a good surge protector is plenty sufficient.
 

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I am still waiting for someone to demonstrate to me how the noise that power conditioners filter (and they do) affects performance of most consumer electronics. I have tried many times to correllate the noise on the a.c. line to noise on the power supplies in the secondaries of consumer equipment and have not been able to do so. Other than effecting changes in ground conditions, I simply cannot see how they can have the benefits that are claimed. I am open minded and willing to test for anything that can reasonably be suggested but so far, after looking many times, I cannot find it.
 

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I think there are a lot of factors in seeing or hearing a difference with a power conditioner. For example, an apartment that I lived in was a relatively old and cheaply built/maintained building and the effects of a power conditioner was quite a bit more apparent. The place just had really "dirty" power. A power conditioner regulated that and improved the power going to my equipment. Digital noise, visually and audibly, were reduced pretty noticeably.

On the flip side, the house that I am in, most people wouldn't find a need or see much of a difference because it's a better establishment and the power is not mucked up so much.
 

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What mechanism accounts for the relationship between "digital noise" and power line noise or regulation? There is none that I have been able to find. The regulation and filtering in modern power supplies simply does not pass these problems to the signal handling areas.
 

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Leonard, it's fine to go without a power conditioner, if you believe it doesn't do anything, which you certainly feel strongly about. I won't refute that not everyone needs it, but I won't go as far to say that no one needs it.

I tend to think that if power supplies filter and regulate the power signal going to the component I automatically assume that there are different levels and qualities of filtration, because not everything in this world is created equal. If minor power fluxes occur, what regulates that? Power supplies I suppose, but to me again, I tend to think why not have more filtration and regulations if it will/might help?

Personally, I don't know how things work exactly, I just experience them working. Just like MANY of the electronics that I use on a daily basis, I cannot tell you how they work, I just know they do. Maybe it's something I should look into, but again, I hear/see a difference, so that's good enough for me.

For example, when I got my Pioneer Elite plasma, I tried plugging the television straight into the wall to compare to plugging into my power conditioner. The result? Plugging straight into the wall made my television "Buzz" pretty noticeably, like a illuminated bar sign would. Plugging into the power conditioner nearly eliminated that buzz. Again, I cannot tell you WHY it is, I just know what I experienced.
 

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I never said that no one needs a power conditioner. What I have a problem with is when someone claims that the image is better, without defining how it is better, assumes that the perceived difference is because of a power filter, then leads others to believe that they can expect such improvements with no evidence that it is so other than their belief that they saw something.

Buzzing in a PS is usually the switching transformer working harder due to excessive load, high or low input voltage, or because of something on the a.c. line. That typically does not transfer into any effect on the secondary supplies, but can be annoying. If a power conditioner helps to alleviate it, then there is no reason not to use one. This is rather rare, IMO, but certainly possible. There are also cases where more conventional power supplies like found in amps pass some line noise, and I have always held that when there is a clear reason, a filter may be useful. In these cases, it is often the case that less expensive filtered units serve the same purpose.

Experience is ALWAYS biased by expectation and prior knowledge. Yours, mine, everyone's. There are so many cases of placebo and expectation effects that have been documented that I think it is reasonable to question casual observation of perceived improvements that have not even a hint of rational explanation available. I have looked very carefully into this matter of power supply filtering. There is no doubt that most power conditioners eliminate line noise. The faulty assumption at work here is that the noise that they eliminate ever affects the image that we see. It simply has not ever been shown that I know of, and looking for it it is clear that the noise in power supplies comes, by a large margin, from the power supply switching itself.

There is nothing wrong with extra filtering. What I have a problem with is promoting the notion that there is some performance benefit. IME, which includes many dozens of hours with a scope, line filters, real world devices under test, and random and created line noise, I cannot conclude that there is much benefit for the majority of users over inexpensive surge suppression devices with minimal filtering. The same effects on grounding can be achieved with these and this is where most of the noise benefits, if any, come from.
 

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Fair enough, Leonard. :)

The buzzing from the Pioneer plasma is a relatively known issue and people claim more that it is something in the panel itself and not the power supply (which am not so sure about). A decent amount of Pioneer owners exhibit this issue in varying degree. There's even a poll on AVS Forum about it. It ranges from "no buzzing" to "buzzing and it's extremely annoying", and everything in between. It was pretty common in the 8th generation Pioneers and the issue was lessened in the 9th generations, but it's still sort of common.

That's another issue, I guess.

You're right, experience and opinion, reviews, etc. are always biased. Placebo effect certainly does play a massive role in this industry and I agree that even something like a power conditioner will yield some of that, even in myself. I am always questioning and determining whether or not I am experiencing placebo effects, especially in my own personal purchases.
 
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