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Power Conditioner?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by ghindman, Feb 27, 2006.


  1. ghindman

    ghindman

    Feb 10, 2006
    Couldn't decide if this should go in Amps, or Effects, so I chose Amps.

    Anyway, I'm looking at a power conditioner, and wonder which one people prefer. The Furman's seem to be the popular choice, but there is no indication on either Musician's Friend, or the Furman website, of what the difference is between the $40 M-8, and the $80 M-8D, other than the light pods. Anyone know the basic differences? Is there another brand I should be looking at? I'm not terribly keen to spend more than $100, unless there's a compelling reason to do so.

    thanks
     
  2. Tony G

    Tony G

    Jan 20, 2006
    NY
    A power conditioner can be little more than a glorified power stip. Anything with good surge protection will be good. If you want more options like rear lights, meters, etc., you pay more money. The $40 M-8 should be plenty if you are just trying to tidy up your rack and get some protection at the same time. Sure the lights can come in handy, but I'm not sure they are worth $40 more.

    Art makes a basic unit too that is supposed to be very reliable and inexpensive.
     
  3. ghindman

    ghindman

    Feb 10, 2006
    Nah, I'm looking for a true power conditioner to strip out interference from lights, appliances, etc.. My home studio is on the same circuit as most of the rest of my basement, so tons of line noise.
     
  4. Tony G

    Tony G

    Jan 20, 2006
    NY
    Right, and I think that even the lowest priced furman or art or whatever power conditioner will do this. All the rest is just extras.
     
  5. seamonkey

    seamonkey

    Aug 6, 2004
    Conditioners like this would be several hundred dollars more.
     
  6. Tony G

    Tony G

    Jan 20, 2006
    NY

    I dissagree. Even the inexpensive furman m8 says it has those interference blocking features.
     
  7. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    Any competently designed amp has all the power conditioning it could ever need built in. You do not need one outboard. ......Of course come to think of it one could say the same thing about EQs and that doesn't stop anyone from using outboard eqs....

    I think the kind of circuit isolation you're looking for may be very expensive. There's probably something going on with your power which needs to be addressed.
     
  8. Tony G

    Tony G

    Jan 20, 2006
    NY
    This is straight from furmans website in the description to the very inexpensive m8:

     
  9. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    Unless you spend at least a couple of hundred $ at best this is all the filtering elements you'll get in so-called conditioners:
    http://www.allelectronics.com/cgi-bin/item/FTR-43/485/10_AMP_EMI_FILTER,_PREPPED_.html
    and they won't take all that line noise out. In severe situations almost nothing will. At the very least you'll have to install a dedicated line from your studio to your power panel.
     
  10. seamonkey

    seamonkey

    Aug 6, 2004
    Only basic filtering is provided on the basic conditioners. The power supplies in the gear should already have this. Signal cables need to be well shielded to keep out RFI.

    With appliances on the same circuit, especially ones with compressors can cause voltage fluctuations. Which you can't get out with basic conditioners.
     
  11. Tony G

    Tony G

    Jan 20, 2006
    NY

    Haha, no way... Really??? So basically, any amp would already have that filtering element. I don't own or intend to buy a power conditioner any time soon. I do understand that you get more for your money, but I didn't realize the one I was talking about really isn't anything more than a glorified power conditioner.
     
  12. MacGroove

    MacGroove Brother of the Groove with a 'Pocket Full of Funk'

    Oct 5, 2005
    Calif.
    +1, as Bill says. I would have to use a ground lift (like the one Bill suggests) at times. Power Conditioners like the Furman are great for in rack use with everything already plugged in so all you have to do is plug one into an outlet but will not get rid of the buzz. Even ground lifts on amps or pre-amps won't do it. Same some money and get the ground lift.
     
  13. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    As unbelievable as it seems, no, most amps don't even come with that level of line filtering. Typically this is what's in there:
    http://www.allelectronics.com/cgi-bin/item/104D1K/140850/0.1_UF,_1000_V_CERAMIC_DISC_CAPACITOR_.html
    All well and good, but here's what you're getting:
    http://www.allelectronics.com/cgi-bin/item/MOV-250-20/search/MOV,_250_V,_20_JOULES_.html
     
  14. ghindman

    ghindman

    Feb 10, 2006
    Thanks for the feedback. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm under the impression that a ground-lift will only take care of the 60hz hum from a ground loop issue. A conditioner smooths out the spikes and valleys in the AC signal caused by upstream devices. My amp has a built-in ground lift, and it has no impact on the noise.

    I'm aware that a conditioner isn't going to eliminate all line noise.
     
  15. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    Most hum and buzz and similar noise in an audio system, aside from that picked up by magnetic pickups, is caused by gear with "pin 1 problems."

    Cables that connect to gear must have their shields bonded to the chassis right at the connector. Some pieces don't, and instead route the shield connection to the circuit board and the a circuitous route to the chassis. This is what a pin 1 problem is--the term comes from the pin number of an XLR connector. This indirect route from shield to chassis allows noise carried on the shield to introduce itself into the audio circuitry.