Power conditioner / Surge Protection

Posted by: icehawk21

Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/11/10 10:16 PM

What is recommended around these parts for power conditioner/surge protections units? I'm putting back my theater back together and started thinking about whether or not my Monster HT800 unit is sufficient. I'm thinking not since I bought it years ago for my computer equipment and re-purposed it for my home theater equipment.

What is recommended/used by everyone here?
Posted by: SirQuack

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/11/10 10:23 PM

I would not worry to much about conditioning or cleaning dirty power, basically a snake oil sales technique. I suppose if you want to find a nice surge protector to give you peace of mind you can, just don't wast to much money.

I've had good luck with my TrippLite HT PowerBar
Posted by: icehawk21

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/11/10 10:27 PM

I agree - I'm not so concerned with 'clean' power. But I am concerned with protecting my equipment from a power surge.

Is there anything that can be applied where the power comes into the home - i.e. at the panel? Or just buy something for each location in the house with a significant electronic footprint?
Posted by: SirQuack

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/11/10 10:32 PM

I'm not really an electrician, but it is my understanding if a house is wired/grounded correctly, combined with the built in protection/guts (rectifiers) that most audio equipment has, you really would not need more than a decent surge protection. I think the higher the joules rating the better. Much of my equipment is plugged right into the outlet, and has been that way for 18years, since my first home.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/11/10 10:34 PM

Bryan, as you may already understand, no additional "power conditioning" is needed for audio equipment. The power supply sections of the electronic equipment use the transformer, rectifier and filter capacitors to supply clean DC for use in the amplification section.
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/11/10 10:36 PM

For a couple of hundred dollars (more or less) you can add a whole house surge protector to your breaker box, if you have 2 unused spots next to each other. I've been planning on doing this, but just haven't done it yet.
Posted by: Wid

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/11/10 10:37 PM


I use a Belkin PF60 PureAV for all of my equipment. While some claim it's all snake oil I like the idea of having some sort of protection. To me 2 bills to protect several thousands in equipment is a small price to pay. Plus it gives a central location for all of the stuff to be plugged into.
Posted by: ClubNeon

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/12/10 12:43 AM

Many "conditioners" have the problem of using transformers in an attempt to isolate the wall outlets from the ones on the unit. The transformers end up limiting available current, and can cause trouble for amps.
Posted by: davidsch

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/12/10 07:13 AM

Originally Posted By: wid

I use a Belkin PF60 PureAV for all of my equipment. While some claim it's all snake oil I like the idea of having some sort of protection. To me 2 bills to protect several thousands in equipment is a small price to pay. Plus it gives a central location for all of the stuff to be plugged into.


I use the same model but caught it on sale once for $149 US. The price seems to vary throughout the year.
Posted by: bdpf

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/12/10 10:00 AM

I use a Belkin power bar bought for $35 at Costco and it does the job fine.
Posted by: casey01

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/12/10 10:35 AM

This so-called "clean power" business is essentially a non-issue for me, however, along with the surge protection, if you have a number of pieces of equipment to turn on and off and you don't have a dedicated circuit, the delays and sequential on/off capabilities featured in the better quality power centers can be quite helpful in this area, along with the ability to prevent the "pop" in speakers that sometimes happens when you turn off power amps.
Posted by: wbedford

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/15/10 09:43 AM

Originally Posted By: ClubNeon
Many "conditioners" have the problem of using transformers in an attempt to isolate the wall outlets from the ones on the unit. The transformers end up limiting available current, and can cause trouble for amps.


+1

Monster/Furman/APC/Belkin conditioners primarily employ internal transformers and chokes to assist with provision of "clean power". Electrical current can be "held back" when filtering with transformers & chokes.

Even if you have tried/auditioned conditioners from various manufacturers listed above, you are not straying from the transformer/choke design philosophy.
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/15/10 09:52 AM

I've been using one of the Monster power conditioners / surge protectors and haven't had a bit of trouble with power.
Posted by: snazzed

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/15/10 03:28 PM

On "dirty power," it can be an issue if its really bad.

Father in Law retired to a small town, population about 3000 with really dirty power. In fact the power goes out often enough that he has a generator for his house.

Anyway, he has a 52" Sony rear projection tv and the bulb burned out every 6 months... and they aren't cheap.

Eventually he got a large UPS and has been fine ever since.

Having said that, yeah, most of the time its a non issue. This is a really small town with bad facilities.

snazzed
Posted by: ClubNeon

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/15/10 03:33 PM

I'm all for UPSes, doubly so if they have true sine output (the stepped sine approximation can cause some larger transformers in amps and plasma TVs to buzz), triply so if they can provide greater than 15 Amps of current for short periods when the batteries are full.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/15/10 03:55 PM

Originally Posted By: snazzed
Anyway, he has a 52" Sony rear projection tv and the bulb burned out every 6 months... and they aren't cheap.

Eventually he got a large UPS and has been fine ever since.

This may not be so much a matter of dirty power, but one in which the UPS allows the fan to cool the bulb down properly upon loss of power.
Posted by: CV

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 12:46 AM

Originally Posted By: ClubNeon
I'm all for UPSes, doubly so if they have true sine output (the stepped sine approximation can cause some larger transformers in amps and plasma TVs to buzz), triply so if they can provide greater than 15 Amps of current for short periods when the batteries are full.


That sounds really expensive, but I wouldn't mind it, either.
Posted by: ClubNeon

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 01:51 AM

None of Tripp-Lite's UPSes will provide more than the feed's amperage to their outlets. Actually, they provide less (15A unit provides 12A). At least on the spec sheet. You can push them into over-load for a few seconds before they shut down, so you can get closer to full service.

But the ones we use at work, SU3000RTXL2U, have a 120V, 30A plug (L5-30P), and can provide up to 24A to their outlets. You can get them for about $1100. (Yeah, I've pushed one of them into overload too.)
Posted by: CV

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 02:00 AM

That looks like a nice unit, and the price isn't as bad as I thought. Does it have true sine output like you were saying?
Posted by: ClubNeon

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 02:08 AM

Yes, it is true sine. Double conversion, AC to DC to charge the batteries, and then the DC to AC with full time sine wave. It's always running from the batteries, so when the AC fails there is absolutely 0 cut-over time.
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 02:10 AM

Smart UPS are awesome. I've also overloaded them. Not that hard... wink I use a Belkin UPS at home. Probably not a true sine wave model, though, given how inexpensive it was. Oh well.
Posted by: CV

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 04:26 AM

Something to consider when I stop finding other things to buy.
Posted by: ClubNeon

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 10:52 AM

With that UPS you'll need a 30A breaker and a special outlet installed. But if you were planning for a custom 20A install already, no reason not to go with the 30A. The locking (L5-30P) wall outlets are really nice, and the UPS will then provide the normal outlets you are used to seeing.
Posted by: CV

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 12:13 PM

Thanks, Chris.
Posted by: JBall

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 12:16 PM

I would avoid plugging a high power amp into any power conditioner, especially ones that are are transformer coupled. I've heard stories that they rob power and can actually damage your amp. I think this whole power conditioner product scheme is a waste of $$$ just like magic audio tweaks.
Posted by: ClubNeon

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 12:18 PM

Oh, and you can find L5-30P to 5-15R or 5-20R adapter cords for less than $20 so you can plug standard things into the 30A outlet without having to get the UPS first.
Posted by: wbedford

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 03:37 PM

Originally Posted By: JBall
I would avoid plugging a high power amp into any power conditioner, especially ones that are are transformer coupled. I've heard stories that they rob power and can actually damage your amp. I think this whole power conditioner product scheme is a waste of $$$ just like magic audio tweaks.


This is the reason I dumped my Belkin PF60. It employed multiple transformers and chokes to achieve its goal of clean power.

Like Chris suggests, I would love to have implemented a large enough UPS system in my house to feed my system. However, the finance director (wife) did not feel the same way I did about audio/video excellence.





Posted by: Philippe

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 05:56 PM

I have a APC H10 for about 2 year now and all i can tell is that it work just fine, just sit there and do is job. Relay all my power cable too.
Posted by: Da_Gimp_Pimp

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/16/10 07:30 PM

Originally Posted By: Philippe
I have a APC H10 for about 2 year now and all i can tell is that it work just fine, just sit there and do is job. Relay all my power cable too.


Ditto. I have the exact same unit and am extremely happy with it.
Posted by: danmagicman7

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/17/10 10:53 AM

I own a PS Audio Duet I use for my headphone rig. Would have never paid $250 for it new, so I found it used on Audigon. In my research, it stood alone with the filtering and protection it offered for its price point. PS Audio claims there are no voltage restrictions that other conditioners suffer from. Plus, it glows a cool blue color.

I view it as a "power conditioner" second and a over/under voltage protector first. Most surge protectors do not protect against both over/under voltage fluctuations. My parents lost a TV and a refrigerator due to a brown out (voltage drop). So, if you do invest in a UPS/power conditioner, look for over/under voltage protection.

Some of PS Audio's claims on the site are a little sensationalist (phrases like "sound/video you've never experienced before"), but the utility in some of their devices is pretty awesome, like multiple power zones that will turn on/off on a delay, "auto reboot" power zones, you can even control one UPS from your iPhone!

While I would never drop 2 grand on a power conditioning system, investing some money into power equipment and getting some free conditioning isn't bad either. I thought it was a neat little unit that was well-priced.


Posted by: wbedford

Re: Power conditioner / Surge Protection - 11/17/10 02:22 PM

Back to the original question, if you want to augment your Monster HT-800, you could always add a noisehound plugged into the outlet feeding your Monster, or into the Monster itself.

Here are some reviews:
http://www.audioreview.com/cat/accessori...07_1590crx.aspx

The current noisehound version is the BC 86 MK5 and it incorporates surge protection as well as filtering. They cost 140 ish, but if you have a system worth 3-6K, it's not really a large expense.