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Thread: Power cord

  1. #1

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    Default Power cord

    Guys,
    this is a subject that I've been puzzled...I've been reading about the suggestion to replace factory supplied power cord on gears to improve the sound. The part that I don't get it was how can it makes a difference? unless it is completely malfunctioning, the quality of the power source would tend to be more relevant than the means to deliver it (unlike speaker cables and interconnects), thoughts? thanks.....polkarama
    I am sorry, I have no opinion on the matter. I am sure you do. So, don't mind me, I just want to talk audio and pie.

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    Well after you upgrade your power cord, don't forget to upgrade the wall receptacle too.

    I'm on the fence on the power cord/receptacle upgrade, simply due to lack of experience with such upgrades. It does however lean toward the audio 'voodoo and doodoo' section for me.

    Cheers,
    Russ
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    If you wanna just buy into it as everyone would like for you to........

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...tem=1947371173

    Personally, I think that having a dedicated circuit running the pieces on your rack would be a better way to go than to spend the above money on a stupid lil cable. I think that there are better cables than the el cheapos, but NEVER will i spend several hundred dollars on a power cord............
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    I made my own power cords and it made a noticable difference on my system. I replaced the cord on my DVD player and the sound and picture quality improved. The DVD player had a 20% red push originally. After I replaced the power cord the push dropped to 5%. I can say I was skeptical at first, but I figured if it did not make a difference I was only out $20. Now I can say it was some of the best $20 I have spent on my system. I have made a few of these for others and they have also seen the difference, but you are the one in the end that needs to decide if it is worth it and also makes a difference. Good luck.
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    Russ and Brett,
    thanks for the info and I agree with you, skepticism is how I approach the subject....and there is no way I am going to spend $295 for a power cord :D

    Schumach,
    for entertaining my curiosity on this, I have no problem spending $20. The one question I have, what did you do? or perhaps, how did you come around to make one? did you use higher quality/heavier gauge of electrical cord? I am willing to test drive your cable if you do sell them....
    I am sorry, I have no opinion on the matter. I am sure you do. So, don't mind me, I just want to talk audio and pie.

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    I think that is one of the biggest myths in audio today. how come my sansui au-717 has a little power cord like you find on a lamp or small applience. specs: min.rms,both channels driven,from 20to 20,000 with no more then 0.015% total harmonic distortion. not worth the extra money to me.

    scott

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    I've been contemplating this one for my CDR as it has a removable plug. If it works well I will do another for my Dynaco amp. It doesn't have the removable plug but is pretty frickin' old. I'd be hesitant to work on any of my newer stuff.

    http://www.tnt-audio.com/clinica/merlino.html
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    Here are some links that will help you make it yourself. The first is at AVS forum the second is what it should look like.

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...hreadid=126177

    http://www.geocities.com/jaydmdigital/diy.html

    You can do a search on the AVS forum looking up Maher and find links to other DIY projects that will help.

    You find small power cords on equipment, because it cost money to make and ship. The manufactures only meat the guidelines required for the power cord. Most power cords are not going to have a ground and any noise is going want to go the least resistant path, which without a ground is going to be through your equipment. This means more noise and more ware and tear on the equipment. Take a dimmer switch on a fan. You can hear the hum via the speakers on a sound system (assuming they are on the same circuit). Connect a ground to the switch and the fan, the hum will go away (assuming the circuit at the box has been grounded correctly). Also bigger wire means less resistance, which means less heat. Heat will cause increase EMI and other noise on the line.

    The twist in the wire work the same way as a CAT5 cable for networking. The tigher the twist, the cleaner the signal.

    Good luck.
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    Schumach......

    You don't need any sort of protective shielding or jacket on the twist? I'd be pretty hesitant to just leave braided cable out like that and all exposed. Personally, i'd want some sort of shielding, but that's just me.....The braids look cute, but if the goal is a tight strand, then do this:

    The best way that I've seen a strand done, that an electrician had done on a job site that I was working at was to take the 3 individual wires and cut equal lengths(make them longer than you need since it's gonna shrink down) . Tie, or secure, those lengths to something secure. Go to the other end of those cables and take the 3 ends and basically screw them into where a bit would go into your drill. Start it up and the thing will tignten completely solid and you won't have to worry about it unraveling. One BIG key to this is to keep the cables tight and stand back. Don't step forward in anticipation of the twist getting tighter and shortening up on ya. As it tightens up and pulls you closer, THEN get closer. If you are too close it'll get caught up in a knotty twist and won't be as tight. I watched an electrician make a 30 foot run of cable in about 30 seconds. I can't imagine trying to sit and hand braid a power cord just so that it looks pretty........my god. Only bad thing about that that I can see is that it'll make a fairly rigid cable.

    Anyway, just a few thoughts........
    Last edited by brettw22; 12-28-2002 at 03:02 AM.
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    Here is the PDF on how to make the power cord. The EIC connector is not needed if you plan go directly to the internal board.

    brettw22 it sounds like you are twisting the wire. Braiding will intertwine the two grounds.
    Last edited by schumach; 12-28-2002 at 03:10 AM.
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    Originally posted by schumach
    Braiding will intertwine the two grounds.
    What's the benefit of intertwining the two grounds? If you stick all 4 cables in a drill and twist them up, won't you be getting the same result?
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    Twisting keeps the wires in the same order, braiding moves the inner wires to the outside and the outside to the inside shielding the common and neutral with a separate ground. Doing this will change the characteristics of the signaling being emitted.
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    I still don't see why if you were to use my twisting method you'd be losing anything over sitting there braiding one by hand..... You'd still be getting the grounds and other cables moved around each other...........right?
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    With a twist the ground wires wrap around the same common or neutral wire. With a braid the grounds alternate between the common and neutral. I hope I explained that clearly.
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    Ok.......I get how you explained it......If braiding is such a superior way of making a power cord, how come all sorts of companies haven't come up with somethin like that on their own (or have they)?

    Also, are you just supposed to leave the cable exposed like that or can you get some sort of wrapping around the braid? From a safety standpoint, I would think that it'd be a good idea to not just leave it exposed like that.
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    The wire has a shield around it. If you are thinking of it being like Romex (house wiring) it is not needed, this is only used to meet codes for wires in the wall and to keep the wire together. If you want it to look better you can purchase the black plastic coil wrapping from the hardware store, that is what I did.
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    Schumach and Brett,
    thanks for the discussions and information, any chance you could post a picture of what your cable looks like? thanks...
    I am sorry, I have no opinion on the matter. I am sure you do. So, don't mind me, I just want to talk audio and pie.

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    In one of my post there is a link to a picture of one that has been built, but here it is again.

    http://www.geocities.com/jaydmdigital/diy.html

    On a side note I have also used this design is making power outlets for the equipment to plug into. I have made over a dozen of them and every person that has one has notice a difference in sound (this is without modifing any of the power cords).

    What I did:
    At the end of the power cord I used a good quality outlet and metal box. You can make it with two or four outlets, but if you use four outlets remember to braid the wire between outlets.


    Please note: this is not a link to my page, but of a member from AVS forum.
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    Here's another braided design. I got some CAT5e for X-mas and will be doing some speaker cables when I can.

    http://www.tnt-audio.com/clinica/ttse.html
    Make it Funky! :)

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    I thought power cords were voodoo until I tried one. I bought a tube power amp from a guy and ended up talking him out of a $400 power cable he was selling on another auction which he used to use on the power amp I won. I was just in a mood and figured it looked cool and for $75, well, as I said, at the time I was just in a mood so I bought it. I used it for a while and at some point I plugged in a standard cable and noticed the sound just sounded dull. That is when I started playing with it. Sure enough, this cable added a lot of excitement to the sound. Since then I have made a few cables from parts at www.partsexpress.com and have been fairly impressed with them. I just got my Pioneer elite DV-47Ai DVD/SACD/DVD-Audio player. The cord on the thing is VERY impressive. Someone other than me seems to think it is important. I agree with the wall plug idea and if you go a step further you always end up with a cheap connection somewhere. I use a power conditioner and everything on the output side of the conditional definatly makes a difference. I can hear a difference with the tube stuff for sure but I have never played with SS equipment concerning power connectors. I have to wonder if it would make as noticeable of a difference because there seems to be a higher noise floor on the SS stuff. Not a hiss or any thing but more of a dynamic noise that changes with the signal which probably masks most of the improvement. I think I am on the audio fringes here but I've heard the differences and at the least, there are differences.
    madmax
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    Powercords are audio black magic that works. Depending on your system, you might notice a large change or no change.

    FWIW, I've tried a variety of DIY cords, and never heard any appreciable difference. I have had excellent results with TG Audio Power Cords and Audience PowerChords.

    However, take my views with a grain of salt, as I am a dealer for these products.
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    thanks guys!

    Gidrah, the link that you gave is interesting, the second picture of the braided cord looks great (can't you tell that I am easily impressed with great looking accessories?)
    Do you guys agree that, if the cord will make a difference, then it should be matched with the gear's type of power requirements? for instance, for the power amp, the characteristics of the cables should be such that it promotes its ability to deliver high currents (such as thick 12 gauge cables, braided or not) more so than eliminating noise (provided that it is connected to a power conditioner) or did I miss the point? or does it even matter?
    I am sorry, I have no opinion on the matter. I am sure you do. So, don't mind me, I just want to talk audio and pie.

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    I used large guage cable but since I don't know where the improvement came from I cannot offer advice other than the guage must handle the given power the unit requires. I would assume a larger guage gives you a larger outside surface area (where all the electrons move) which would be better?
    madmax
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    I haven't tried out swapping out power cords to see if there is in fact a audio difference.I'd like to give it a try.
    I talked to the Monstercable rep not to long ago and he told me about the Monstercable replacement powercords coming.They might be out now,I haven't been in the store in a awhile.
    Back when I worked at Soundex,alot of guys where swapping there cords for Transparents,they also claimed a big overall sound quality improvement.
    I think when we get in the Monster powercords,I'm gonna give it a run and see.Interesting to say the least.Why not.
    Dan
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    PowerLine® 300, 8ft High Performance Power Cable

    For high-performance hookup of high-powered audio and video components.
    Multi-bundled wire technology with large gauge conductors for maximum current transfer.
    Long 8 foot length provides greater flexibility for longer installations.
    24k gold contacts for maximum conductivity.
    Dual 100% mylar and 95% copper braid shielding for maximum EMI and RFI rejection.


    MSRP: $99 available Feb 2003
    Attached Images  
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    or its sibling for $49
    Attached Images  
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    Thanks brother,
    I'll keep an eye out for them, try them out and post back.
    Dan
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    Originally posted by TroyD
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    Sorry, rlw, I couldn't help myself.

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    heh, heh, heh.....

    I do have a question about this though. OK, let's say you buy a new, expensive power cord, aren't you still somewhat hampered by the cheapie 99 cent outlet and non-dedicated circuit you are plugging in to?

    Really, I'm not being a smartass, just asking as little as I know about audio, I know less about electricity.

    BDT
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