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  1. #1

    Member Sales Rating: (11)

    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Memphis Area

    Default Shunyata Evaluation

    To begin with, this review(or will be review) is not geared to change someone's opinion. Since I have not seen much on this forum regarding the products, I am just providing some new readding for some people, and a reasonable review for others.

    Currently, I'm looking to add Shunyata as one of my lines. I contacted them about two weeks ago to set up an appointment at CEDIA. The conversation went well, and we set up an evaluation for some of their products as an initial step to become a dealer. After 30 days, I will send the products back.

    I did a little reading before I contacted them, but I've spent a lot of time reading reviews and technology descriptions since then. Although most of the reviews come from biased rags, the list of people using their products speaks volumes to me.

    On Wed of this week, I received my evaluation products. More on that later, but here is a little bit of background information on the line.

    Most of their power cables hold patents for their helix braiding technique. With the exception of their Venom and Copperhead series, the copper cryogenically treated. I'm not trying to start an argument on why this is or isn't beneficial, just giving information.

    The principle behind the Guardian and Hydra series somewhat set them apart from other designs. Generally, power is filtered by conditioner and then the power is sent to each component. Shunyata takes this a little farther and isolates and filters each line coming back into the distributor as well. Therefore, the "noise" created by other components within a system is virtually isolated from the other components in the system. I realize other companies do this as well, but most do not do it to this level.

    High current devices, such as amplifiers may be plugged in without current restrictions, and from my reading, noise is not added.

    The Guardian series is the lower of the two. I was told they are better than the Hydra series even as recently as two years ago.

    The Hydra series have similar technology, but each outlet utilizes a separate circuit board within the distributor, while the Guardians use a single board per unit. The Hydra 2, 4, and 6 offer the same technologies, while the Hydra 8 goes a step above. I won't detail all of the differences, but the 8 is definetly a nice unit.

    One thing that is needed for the Guardian and Hydra series are external power cables. A 20A cable is required(and of course a Shunyata offering is recommended).

    Below, I've listed the items sent to me for evaluation. I have only taken things out of the packages at this point, as I did not have time to get things set up last night. The Guardian 4 takes approximately 200 hours of burn in. It is recommended to take a high current device, such as a fan, and let it run for several days. The power distributors do not use any energy on their own, so they need current flowing through them to actually burn in. I will not make any final evaluations until I return from CEDIA, which will be after the 17th of September. If I get a chance over the next few days, I will take pictures of everything and post them here.

    Within the 20 days I'll have left, I will integrate each power cable into my demo systems. If you have suggestions on what cable you would like to know about with a specific component, let me know and I can review those first. With two little ones in the house, reviews are a little more difficult, as I don't have "extended" listening sessions very often. That is one reason I have not done a review on the Mordaunt Short 902i's or the Bryston B60, as I described a couple months ago.

    (1) Guardian Model 4S US 125v Shelf Mount

    (1) Copperhead Shielded Series 1.50M (Non-Molded)
    -- Termination: C19 Guardian/Hydra Component-End Plug
    -- Termination: 5-15P NEMA Standard Copperhead US AC Main Plug

    (1) Taipan Helix Alpha 1.75M Power Cable
    -- Termination: C15 Standard Helix Series Component-End Plug
    -- Termination: 5-15P Standard Helix Series Silver US AC Main Plug

    (1) Copperhead Shielded Series 1.50M (Non-Molded)
    -- Termination: C15 Standard Copperhead Component-End Plug
    -- Termination: 5-15P NEMA Standard Copperhead US AC Main Plug

    (1) Diamondback Molded Shielded C13 1.5M Cable

    (1) Venom Molded Shielded C13 1.50M Cable
    Last edited by okiepolkie; 09-07-2006 at 10:18 PM.

  2. #2

    Member Sales Rating: (10)

    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Magnolia, NJ


    I've done some research on their products also. The technology seems to be quite complicated & well over my head. The list of studios & performers who use their products is very impressive, which in my opinion tells me that the stuff does work as advertised & isn't a bunch of hooey. I was half tempted to try one of the Hydra units, but never got around to buying one. Your comments would be very well taken & just might sway myself & others to make a purchase. If you become a dealer would you be doing business with fellow Polkie's?
    "2 Channel & 11.2 HT "
    Panny 65" 3D Plasma
    Yamaha AVENTAGE RX-A3010 AVR
    D>SONIC M2-600M mono's / mains
    Rotel RMB-1095 / 5 channel amp
    Rotel RMB-1075 / 5 channel amp
    TEAC UD - 501 DAC
    Oppo BDP-93
    SONOS System
    KEF Q900 / mains
    KEF Q600 / center
    KEF Q800 / surrounds
    KEF Q100 / rear surr.
    Def Tech ProMonitor 1000 / front & rear presence
    Velodyne SPL-1200R subs / dual pair
    DSPeaker Anti-Mode 8033 sub EQ
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    Extensive room treatments

  3. #3

    Member Sales Rating: (11)

    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Memphis Area


    Here are some pictures of the Guardian, different power cables, and the current setup. The Guardian piece will be moved behind the equipment this weekend when I get a little more time.
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    Last edited by okiepolkie; 09-07-2006 at 10:30 PM.

  4. #4

    Member Sales Rating: (11)

    Join Date
    Jul 2001


    Out of curiosity, how much does the Guardian 4 run?

    And do you offer Club Polk discounts? :D
    Sony KDL-40V2500 HDTV, Rotel RSX-1067 Receiver, Sony BDP-S550 Blu-ray, Slim Devices Squeezebox, Polk RTi6, CSi3 & R15, DIY sub with Atlas 15

  5. #5

    Member Sales Rating: (2)

    Join Date
    Sep 2001


    what does that fire hose sized purple power cable go to :D
    MY HT RIG:
    Sherwood p-965
    Sherwood sd871 dvd
    Rotel 1075 amp x5
    LSI15 mains
    LsiC center
    LSIfx surround backs
    Lsi7 side surrounds
    SVS pb12/plus2

    2 Channel Rig:

    nad 1020 Pre-amp
    Rotel 1080 stereo amp
    Polk sda 2B
    kenwood grunt Tuner
    realistic lab 450 TT
    Signal cable IC

  6. #6

    Member Sales Rating: (2)

    Join Date
    Sep 2003


    The design with the power chords sticking up in the air is awful.

  7. #7

    Member Sales Rating: (40)

    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    North Texas


    Not real pleasing for the eye, but it works best with 'big' cables, that aren't as flexible, or friendly to route.
    Check your lips at the door woman. Shake your hips like battleships. Yeah, all the white girls trip when I sing at Sunday service.

  8. #8

    Member Sales Rating: (11)

    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Memphis Area


    The purple "fire hose" is the Taipan. It has the highest retail price, of the cables they sent. Very flexible and doesn't have a lot of heft to it. That might not be reassuring for some people, but from my understanding, air gaps in the helix braid account for a lot of the volume.

    For now, I plugged it into the Bryston B60, with the B60 on, to let the cable burn in. I will give an initial impression of the sound tomorrow, then a more thorough review in about a week. This weekend, I'll install the rest of the power cables to allow them to burn in as well. It is recommended that the helix series cables be given approximately 150 hours, while the shielded cables can probably reach full performance in about 75.

    As a comparison between the helix(Taipan) and the shielded(Copperhead), the Copperhead power cable for the Guardian is somewhat heavy and has an increased stiffness, as can probably be seen in the pictures.

    The shelf mount Guardian series is not my favorite to look at either. They make a rack mount version, but I haven't seen pictures of it yet. It is about $120 more than the shelf mount version, so I'm guessing the chasis is different as well.

    On a positive note, I do like the look of the Hydra series. They are sleek, and resemble a standard component.

    From the Guardian user guide(to affirm Russ's observation): "Idealy, the GUARDIAN should be placed on a dedicated isolation base, rack, shelf, or hard surface floor for best performance. Avoid placing the Guardian directly on carpet if at all possible"
    Last edited by okiepolkie; 09-08-2006 at 10:55 AM.

  9. #9

    Member Sales Rating: (2)

    Join Date
    Sep 2003


    Quote Originally Posted by RuSsMaN
    Not real pleasing for the eye, but it works best with 'big' cables, that aren't as flexible, or friendly to route.
    Good point, especially if it were behind an equipment rack close to the wall.

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