Power conditioners for under $100, are they worth it?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Alex_Santos, Jan 1, 2002.

  1. Alex_Santos

    Alex_Santos Second Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2001
    Messages:
    302
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Should I spend more money on an upgraded model or do the cheaper ones do the trick. Some of the models ive looked:

    Monster Power MP-hts800 plus

    Monster power mp-hts1000

    acoustic research ar-10v

    If anyone has experience with these or other models id love to get some information. Thanks everyone
     
  2. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2000
    Messages:
    4,703
    Likes Received:
    31
    Trophy Points:
    1,610
    Location:
    Knocksville, TN
    Real Name:
    Rachael Bellomy
    Alex, the biggest benefit of these units is surge protection and not just for the electrical outlets. Make sure you have protection on phone lines and cable/satelite lines too. I know the Monster units have a connected equipment warranty, I'm not sure that Acousic Research does? When you have a connected equipment warranty, you have for all pracical purposes, pre-paid insurance.
    Panamax has saved my system twice from surges (lightening) that came in via the cable TV line. The second time there was minor damage to my pre and Panamax paid the bill, promptly. Look for the protection that you need and decide if the unit is dragging down performance in any way. I don't think you can get performance enhancing units in the lower price range, but you can get peace of mind concerning surges and lightening. Best wishes!
     
  3. Alex_Santos

    Alex_Santos Second Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2001
    Messages:
    302
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Im not as concerned with surge protection as I am with the power-noise filters. Im trying to find out if these are beneficial. I can get a generic surge protector for 20 dollars that would do the trick. Im just wondering if its worth it to spend the extra money for the improved sound quality (if there is any at all)?
     
  4. Serge Breton

    Serge Breton Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2001
    Messages:
    528
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I was wondering the exact same thing with the Acoustic Research surge protectors with constant voltage filtering(power conditionner). I had posted a thread and it went unnoticed. I have heard that surge protectors can actually degrade the performance in a high end audio system but the powerconditioning aspect i would imagine could only be benificial for such a system. Anyone using a power conditionner that notices an improvment over a standard wall outlet and in which area(s)?
     
  5. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2000
    Messages:
    4,703
    Likes Received:
    31
    Trophy Points:
    1,610
    Location:
    Knocksville, TN
    Real Name:
    Rachael Bellomy
    Alex, you should be concerned about lightening. Florida is the capitol of lightening strikes. What is the value of your system? $2000, $5000, more? It could all be destroyed in a nano-second by lightening, even with a Panamax, Monster, Brickwall, or other unit. Make sure you get a connected equipment warranty. The only conditioners that I've seen in person that impressed me as actually helping sound quality were the PS Audio units. I use their Ultimate Outlets to double-up my surge protection. I love my equipment and don't want it wiped out. I live on a ridgetop and there is a good bit of lightening in these parts too. IMHO, $20 power strips are suited for 20" TV's and cheap VCR's. Close your eyes and imagine the worst. Best wishes!
     
  6. james e m

    james e m Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2001
    Messages:
    497
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Alex...

    I have been also looking at surge protectors and power conditioners. I plan on going with one of the audio products from Brickwall. They seem to be the best surge protectors and they add power conditioning as an added bonus. Power conditioners are a confusing subject to say the least.

    james
     
  7. Bert D

    Bert D Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2001
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Why not get a good "UPS" for way under $100 for line conditioning and protection ? Covers phone lines but not cable. I paid $29 for my APC brand "ups" after rebates, that covers $10k of equipment and keeps a clean voltage to the equipment and also allows for a "soft" shutdown in case of power outage.
     
  8. Alex_Santos

    Alex_Santos Second Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2001
    Messages:
    302
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    That was my thinking exactly. I have a ups for my computer with 10 minute power and it works perfectly. The only reason i was considering the surge protectors from the audio manufacturers was the power filtering. Ive heard good things about the monster htps1000 and bad things as well. I know I need a surge, everyone does. What I want to know is if its worth the extra 50 or so to get this power filtering thats supposed to improve my audio and video. Anyone?????
     
  9. Alex_Santos

    Alex_Santos Second Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2001
    Messages:
    302
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    anyone else have an opinion on this subject. Please read my last response before replying. thanks.
     
  10. BradZ

    BradZ Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2001
    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I've been very impressed by both the Monster 800 and 1000 power conditioners. They both do a wonderful job of cleaning up dirty cable pictures as well as lowering the noise floor for audio. This of course depends on your signals. A better bet might be to get a dedicated circuit run to your HT, but for the price I think the Monster units do a very nice job. I haven't tried the AR brand. I will say that once I switched to DBS the picture wasn't as dirty so the difference wasn't as big as it was with cable. They do also protect your cable/sat lines and phone lines from surges as well.

    bottom line, it doesn't hurt to try it for less than $100.

    my .02
     
  11. Alex_Santos

    Alex_Santos Second Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2001
    Messages:
    302
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Thanks brad. Someone who finally got my question. Anyone else with an opinion?
     
  12. Gerard Martin

    Gerard Martin Second Unit

    Joined:
    May 22, 2000
    Messages:
    366
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I just replaced a Monster HTS1000 with
    a Panamax 5100, found the HTS1000 no
    better than a over priced surge protector however my power may not have
    been dirty to start with.
     
  13. WilliamB

    WilliamB Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    May 4, 2000
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Hello there. Just one more opinion. I'm using a Tripp Lite SmartPro 500 UPS for my HT gear. It provides excellent line conditioning as well as enough juice to power down the HT in the event of power loss. It cost $150 or so. Also comes with $10k equipment guarantee.
    Personally, I find no advantage to the higher priced power conditioners[​IMG]
     
  14. Alex_Santos

    Alex_Santos Second Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2001
    Messages:
    302
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I have a bad feeling that the power in my apartament wont be very clean. Its a cheap place and theyre built pretty crappy. I think that panamax is a little out of my price range seeing as id like to only spend around 100 or so.
     
  15. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Messages:
    7,270
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    perhaps you can find some way to determine if the power in your apartment is 'dirty'. contact your power company and perhaps they can steer you in the right direction. minor voltage fluctuations are generally not an issue with modern power supplies. considering what others have posted here regarding florida's propensity for lightning...a surge suppresor may be a good investment. you'll have to spend a bit to get something that clamps down well. go to your library and look up surge suppressors in Consumer Reports. I seem to recall a study not too long ago. While not strictly on topic, I take it you're getting renter's insurance? if so speak to your agent about how your HTF system is handled.
     
  16. Saurav

    Saurav Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2001
    Messages:
    2,174
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I'm not sure a UPS meant for computers is a good idea with audio equipment. I remember reading somewhere that some of the UPS's generate a waveform that's almost a square wave. Of course, with a good UPS, this square wave is very consistent in amplitude and frequency. This is good enough for a computer, which is pretty much only using the transitions for timing, but for an audio component, this could be noisier than a pure sine wave, because a square wave has much higher frequency components and the power supply in audio components might not be designed to filter these out effectively.

    Of course, this could all be complete BS, but I remember reading that somewhere.
     
  17. Christopher Chung

    Christopher Chung Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2001
    Messages:
    201
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    So do I have "dirty power" if I disconnect a light from the surge protector and I hear a "snap" or "crack" from the speakers that are on? Or is this a normal occurance that happens to everybody else?
     
  18. Randy Prue

    Randy Prue Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2001
    Messages:
    108
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Once upon a time...

    I have a computer that used to turn itself off. One day, I wondered if it was the country electricity here (a brown-out, or voltage drop enough to make the computer think it should go into energy save or just plain not have enough juice), or was it a problem with the computer.

    I put it on a UPS. It has NEVER happened since. Conclusion: two possibilities:

    1. The computer healed itself.

    2. The problem was power fluctuations.

    Then I put the VCR on a UPS (it never flashes 12:00 after a power failure).

    So, the juice here is kept up by the batteries. I've just put in a third UPS (CD burner used to make funny noises on the CDs, which I figure could be voltage fluctuations).

    So, my opinion: buy the BIG UPS. It's amazing how fast the battery runs down on the small ones.

    With the UPS and a box full of various surge protectors (some of which have damage and replacement guarantees), with all the phone and cable lines plugged into all the protected outlets... hey, it's cheap insurance.

    ... well, that and the Future Shop replacement extended warranty that has given me a pile of free new equipment when they either lost mine or failed to repair it.

    So, yeah, buy all the protection stuff.
     
  19. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Messages:
    7,270
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Saurav...you're quite right that some UPS's don't generate a pure sine wave. The literature, confirmed by a call to the maker, is certainly in order in those cases. APC is one manufacturer that I know makes both flavors.
     
  20. John Geelan

    John Geelan Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2000
    Messages:
    1,087
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I recently picked up a Monster Power MP-hts800 plus off ebay for around $40 (goes for $99 at many stores) and it has helped the picture on my TV.

    I was getting very light but annoying snow on the screen caused by my cheap surge protector ($10 version).

    But since I installed the Monster 800 the black screen is black, no white specks or snow.

    JohnG
     

Share This Page