Author Topic: State of the Art Power-Conditioner  (Read 2203 times)

Offline P.I.

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #30 on: May 31, 2018, 05:10:05 PM »
Nick, I made my reply based upon my observation that price beyond a certain point is more of an exercise in self than performance.  I don't live in that world.

Dave,
I figured as much and was kind of thinking out loud. Iím amazed at the performance of products like my used kef LS 50s for $750 and all of Garyís reasonably priced cables. I suspect that Tomís icepower 1200as amp will fall into that category as well. I sure hope youíre enjoying your trip as Iím overwhelmed by cement dust as the living room concrete pad was cracked and buckled and needed grinding. Itís even worse than I imagined it could be and I have a very vivid imagination  :roll:
Nick
Ooooohhhhhhhhhhh! Bummer!  Did they leave dust filters that run continuously?

Sorry for your inconvenience.   :roll:
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Offline Nick B

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #31 on: May 31, 2018, 05:55:32 PM »
Nick, I made my reply based upon my observation that price beyond a certain point is more of an exercise in self than performance.  I don't live in that world.

Dave,
I figured as much and was kind of thinking out loud. Iím amazed at the performance of products like my used kef LS 50s for $750 and all of Garyís reasonably priced cables. I suspect that Tomís icepower 1200as amp will fall into that category as well. I sure hope youíre enjoying your trip as Iím overwhelmed by cement dust as the living room concrete pad was cracked and buckled and needed grinding. Itís even worse than I imagined it could be and I have a very vivid imagination  :roll:
Nick
Ooooohhhhhhhhhhh! Bummer!  Did they leave dust filters that run continuously?

Sorry for your inconvenience.   :roll:

Dust filters....dust filters....we donít need no stinkiní dust filters.... Actually, they tried taping light drop cloth to the walls, but the AC created a bit of a vacuum and some of the drop cloth loosened. I cut a few slits and no more vacuum. Itís really tough finding somebody decent in these parts. Quite a housing boom again in so Utah.  :-({|=
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Offline rollo

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #32 on: August 03, 2018, 08:46:59 AM »
The fanciest looking totally average power conditioner I've ever seen. It probably sounds ok. It's just an over-glorified regular rendition of a Felix.

 We have recently compared the Felix which for the money is OK to the Gigawatt PC-2 with optional DC blocker and Felix belongs in the garbage pail. We now sell Gigawatt products as well as our loved conditioner UBERBUSS.
 Different beasts with different sonic attributes and features and pricing. We use the Ubers on the amps and GigaWatt for front end. With the mono blocks drawing serious amperage the Ubers do not loose any dynamics or thin out. We also can use a dedicated line for each mono block with dedicated Uber cleaning. We use three dedicated lines. Two for amps, one for front end.
 It really depends on your components and their draw. Our demo systems have NEVER sounded better with this combo.


charles




« Last Edit: August 03, 2018, 09:02:38 AM by rollo »
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Offline Folsom

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #33 on: August 03, 2018, 11:03:25 AM »
I fail to see how using the same basic topology gave you good and bad results. I'd have to know some details.

Dynamics have to see voltage sag to actually "go away". (it's not a function of current) So if you are getting sag, you probably have something undersized.

Offline TrueAudio

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #34 on: August 04, 2018, 09:04:30 AM »
I fail to see how using the same basic topology gave you good and bad results. I'd have to know some details.

Dynamics have to see voltage sag to actually "go away". (it's not a function of current) So if you are getting sag, you probably have something undersized.
If it isn't a function of current, what's the purpose behind massive capacitor storage banks in power amplifiers then (as well as modifications specifically making a point of mentioning increased capacitance over a stock unit)?  Hundreds (or more) amplifier manufacturers always highlight the instantaneous current that is available due to said manufacturers power supplies.  But even the best supplies aren't perfect and the AC line upstream of them is still compromised (however small of an amount) from the much larger current demands of lower frequency transients.  I would imagine putting a quality clamp on ammeter on your speaker cables while playing the 1812 overture at full power, (if it's fast enough to measure those changes) would be interesting to observe.

« Last Edit: August 04, 2018, 09:06:33 AM by TrueAudio »

Offline Folsom

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #35 on: August 04, 2018, 11:26:23 AM »
If the power supply in your amplifier (playing 1812) gets pulled in voltage from say 40v down to 10v, it can draw the same amount of current from the transformer as it had at 40v. The discharge in capacitors is in joules. The more capacitance you have the easier it is to keep the voltage up. The capacitors provide current of the voltage they were charged with, and voltage drops off as more and more comes from them. So let's say you have a bucket. You need X amount of water in it. The level of the water in the bucket is voltage, and the amount of water is current. The only way to keep the voltage high is by having a massive bucket, so that as you pour water out a significant amount of water will be taken without changing level very much.

What you hear is voltage drop. Not current "drop". In order to actually reduce current enough to hear it, you need to get near failure in audio gear typically. What does happen though is lots of wasted current drops the voltage because you're using lots of water (joules).

I don't know why manufacturers say all of that except that it works as silly marketing. It *sounds* like what they describe but is not. Many may simply not know better, and many don't know why they need such oversized parts to make it sound the way they want. I have no real argument against a stout power supply, but stoutness to PSRR is actually on somewhat of a bell curve - eventually too much gives you low frequency noise.

Offline rollo

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #36 on: August 04, 2018, 12:48:42 PM »
  We have two smart guys here talking way over my knowledge on this matter. So for me after the engineers design a conditioner my only way of knowing the result is to plug it in and listen to its affect.
   It appears to me Gigawatt has engineered a fine product line that if one is interested in conditioning should be considered. Previous to the GigaWatt PC-2+ my Consonance Cyber 211 mono blocks hummed. Not now, gone. They hummed witl all previous conditioners. The Gigawatt as an option is supplied with a DC blocker. That DC blocker had a huge edge over the non DC blocker model. No fuse either,using a circuit breaker that was redesigned by GigaWatt eliminating the fusible link to a more robust link that passes more current. Brilliant. Similar to the after market fuses using a heavier Ga. element.
 To my and my customers ears we are impressed to say the least. All one would except without ANY of the negatives associated with conditioners.
We will demonstrate the PC-2+ at CAF 1018.


charles
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Offline Folsom

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #37 on: August 04, 2018, 05:40:17 PM »
Charles, it sounds like you may have a DC problem. DC blockers are usually just to eliminate hum from transformers... but if you have a lot of it then it'll choke your transformers bad.

Offline tmazz

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #38 on: August 05, 2018, 05:01:30 AM »
Charles, when you say that the Consonance  amps hummed are you talking about a physical hum coming from the amp itself or and electrical hum coming out of the speakers when it is hooked up? The first would typically be a function of DC in your incoming power while the later would indicate some kind of circuitry problem in the amps power supply.
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Offline rollo

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #39 on: August 05, 2018, 08:31:00 AM »
   Coming through the wall baby. Electrical hum. The trannies in amp do not hum and zero circuit issues.



charles
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Offline rollo

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #40 on: August 05, 2018, 08:32:25 AM »
Charles, it sounds like you may have a DC problem. DC blockers are usually just to eliminate hum from transformers... but if you have a lot of it then it'll choke your transformers bad.



   Very possible I need to measure and find out for sure. Thanks.


charles
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Offline TrueAudio

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #41 on: August 06, 2018, 04:06:48 PM »
If the power supply in your amplifier (playing 1812) gets pulled in voltage from say 40v down to 10v, it can draw the same amount of current from the transformer as it had at 40v. The discharge in capacitors is in joules. The more capacitance you have the easier it is to keep the voltage up. The capacitors provide current of the voltage they were charged with, and voltage drops off as more and more comes from them. So let's say you have a bucket. You need X amount of water in it. The level of the water in the bucket is voltage, and the amount of water is current. The only way to keep the voltage high is by having a massive bucket, so that as you pour water out a significant amount of water will be taken without changing level very much.

What you hear is voltage drop. Not current "drop". In order to actually reduce current enough to hear it, you need to get near failure in audio gear typically. What does happen though is lots of wasted current drops the voltage because you're using lots of water (joules).

I don't know why manufacturers say all of that except that it works as silly marketing. It *sounds* like what they describe but is not. Many may simply not know better, and many don't know why they need such oversized parts to make it sound the way they want. I have no real argument against a stout power supply, but stoutness to PSRR is actually on somewhat of a bell curve - eventually too much gives you low frequency noise.
It appears to me at least one manufacturer builds in, (as part of the amplifiers circuitry) their own version of something like Dave's Uberbuss:

http://halcro.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/UPFC_PowerSupply.pdf

http://halcro.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/HALCRO_TECHNICAL_PAPER.pdf

« Last Edit: August 06, 2018, 05:33:44 PM by TrueAudio »

Offline TrueAudio

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #42 on: August 06, 2018, 06:08:40 PM »
http://halcro.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Mains_Conditioners.pdf

Quote
MAINS POWER CONDITIONING & FILTERING

Most audio power amplifiers:

1. have no power supply regulation,
2. nor filtering and
3. practically all use "peak rectification" power supplies.

The Halcro amplifiers thoroughly address all these points, and mains conditioners address some of them, but not all.  Power supply regulators essentially maintain a constant mains ripple-free supply voltage to the amplifier circuitry. There are basically 3 different types of power supply regulators which are:

a) Linear regulators. These are the simplest, but they generate a great deal of heat, and so designers of amplifiers are reluctant to use them because amplifiers already generate a great deal of heat at higher powers even without linear regulators.

b) Switching regulators. These are very efficient, that is they do not produce much heat, but they produce radio frequency interference.  However, if well designed, this interference can be reduced to insignificant levels- far less in fact by than that borne by the normal mains supply. New E.C. standards are particularly strict in this regard and only allow radio frequency emissions of the order of micro-Watts! The Halcro units use switching regulators which do comply with EC standards.

c) Power factor corrected supplies (PFC). These are very rare in the audio industry, and are expensive to manufacture. These supplies doubly regulate the mains-to-amplifier supply conversion, and thus if designed well are particularly mains signal free. They also have the very substantial advantage in producing no mains current distortion, unlike all other types of supplies, which produce very considerable mains current distortion, which may cause interference to other equipment. (These PFC supplies should really be called "low mains current distortion supplies" and not "power factor corrected supplies," a term adopted by the industry which means something quite different.)

To address the problems cited above, the audio industry now produces 3 different types of mains conditioners:

1. Mains filters. These filter out radio interference signals from the mains (so called "EMI" or "Electro-magnetic Interference.") which can cause substantial degradation to the performance of many brands of amplifiers, especially those which do not have appropriate circuitry to suppress such interference. Thus such filters may be of benefit to some brands. The Halcro units have extremely extensive filters, both pre- and post- power supply, and in addition have EMI suppression within the actual amplifier circuitry. Thus these units will probably be of no benefit to the Halcro amplifier, but may well improve source equipment (preamps, SACD players etc)

2. Mains regeneration supplies. These in effect reproduce a regulated mains supply and thus can be of benefit to amplifiers containing no power supply regulation. The Halcro units are doubly regulated and thus the use of such units will probably be of no benefit to the Halcro equipment. Even though most source equipment has regulated power supplies, these mains regeneration units may assist some source equipment which are susceptible to mains current or voltage distortion.

3. Units combining the above features 1. and 2. The comments above apply to these units.  We are not aware of any mains conditioners which incorporate mains filtering, and mains regeneration, and low mains current distortion circuitry; a feature


Bruce Candy, Physicist
Head of HALCRO research and development.
Edit:  I believe Dave has said that the Uberbuss provides for a "current well", and that it is a *separate* feature/implementation from his PFC network.
« Last Edit: August 06, 2018, 07:42:57 PM by TrueAudio »

Offline P.I.

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #43 on: August 07, 2018, 08:55:49 PM »
I have never been able to hear a Halcro amp.  When I first read about them their approach seemed not only bleeding edge but light years ahead of other designs.

Given the degradation of the grid since they were first introduced their design makes even more sense now!   :thumb:

Iím basically a tube guy, but Iím not opposed to intelligent sand amps.  That is why I have some of Folsomís amps.  They make sense.  One of the reasons I love tube amps is the power supply topology.  Lots of inherent rejection from the choke(s) and the ability to bypass the noisy crap floating around on the AC lines... if you know how.
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Offline Folsom

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Re: State of the Art Power-Conditioner
« Reply #44 on: August 07, 2018, 09:31:29 PM »
I thought pretty much no one liked Halcro's first amps...