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Thread: Power Cords: Snake Oil or Solution

  1. #1

    Power Cords: Snake Oil or Solution

    I had an interesting conversation with a principal in one of the cable companies out there. I asked him what he thought of spending $4K on a 6-foot power cord. His response was that maybe they had $400 worth of parts and a monthly marketing budget of $15,000. I personally don't see how the last 6 feet of delivering 120 VAC at 60 Hz can change the sound of your digital audio system...but wondering what you guys think?

  2. #2
    In my humble opinion I think there is much snake oil being marketed to us. I went a DYI route and spent about $400 for 12 feet of power cords for 4 components. I do think there is merit in not having a poorly constructed cord and using ones that are reasonably well shielded, etc. I cannot recall where I read the article and I hope I am not mis-remembering but I believe all the AC that comes in gets converted to DC inside the component...hmm.

  3. #3
    Junior Member
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    Mar 2014
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    Portland, Oregon
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    I think clean power can help but I do not think uber power cards make any real difference anyone can hear, at least anyone honest with themselves. Paying the kind of money many of the high end crowd pays for cables and anything else is mostly just lining the sellers pockets with no real return on sound quality but of course when you spend that kind of money on a promise your going to hear a difference real or not.
    We used to be really picky about running LARGE power cables for our car audio because we found bigger better built wires got more current to the amps which in turn sounded better but I think a home installation with good quality power and everything a HUGE mega dollar cable and special outlet is just overkill. Like said well built with quality parts yes, but after that spend money on things you can actually hear.

  4. #4
    Yes, the inner workings of all electronics is DC. The power supply simple takes the incoming current (120 VAC at 60 Hz) and converts it to DC and then divides it down to whatever voltages are required by the various components inside the gear. There is NO benefit to high priced cables IMHO. I'm about to get some uber expensive cables and will put them to the test.

    Clean power...now that's another thing. I don't have any problems with line conditioners. I use them and I do have clean power.

  5. #5
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
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    Me I'd consider a high end computer UPS and I do use them for the rest of my AV gear when mine are working and have good batteries but I have never hooked it directly to my receiver as I'm not sure it would like the kind of current a fairly high powered 7.1 system would want when it first turns on or is really running hard during a session. SO maybe for that application a power conditioner would be better. I know lil sisters hubby has one on his system and he likes it but not sure if it made it sound better, though at least it should help the power supply last longer not always dealing with power issues coming in.
    If I ever get batteries or another good deal on a extra UPS that's big I'll have to try it on the rig and see if it freaks out just because.
    All the PC's in here are on 1500VA decent quality APC units that have most of the bells and whistles and I have a few pro older ones that need batteries stored away seeing how the batteries sometimes cost as much as I paid for them.

  6. #6
    What does one need for clean power? There are $150 options and multi $1000 options? Should we have filters? There seems to be a lot of conflicting marketing hype out there with little fact to go on - at least that I have been able to find. Any advise would be most welcome. I currently have hooked up a Belkin PureAV 30 surge protector and filter.

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