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#269245 - 2017-10-24 10:17 Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2)
Registered: 2002-02-14
Posts: 8,414
ncpl Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government
ncpl Offline

President of the Imperial Galactic Government

Registered: 2002-02-14
Posts: 8,414
Loc: Surrey, UK
A long time ago I played around with some after market power leads and concluded that they resulted in a different sound but I didn't prefer it (see here). I saved some money smile

In the years since, my system has changed as has my room. At the heart of the system is an 808v6 and 8KSE DSP's. Years ago I installed a dedicated consumer unit and ring main circuit but these are on walls where my system used to be. That is now 180degs around the wrong way for where it now sits. The power for the 8k's was therefore from an original house ring main in the main consumer unit. I decided to look at what I could do about this and put back a bit of separation for power to the system.

First up was installation of 2 new dedicated radial lines to each side of the room where the DSP's are located. These lines come from the dedicated consumer unit. One for each DSP only. "Why not?" I thought.

Around the same time I had noted the comments from Cleop and Crion on this topic.

I gave Shunyata UK a call to see what they had and what they might advise for DSP's. I talked at length with Guillaume Boyer and he put me in touch with the tech guys in the US. They had a lot of installs with Meridian gear and spoke well of the combo.

One of the first things they advised was to install the Euro/Schuko sockets if possible. These are solid connections and importantly run with no fuse in the plugs. Many of you will know these plugs in the UK as M ships gear with both UK and Euro cables. My electrician checked this and said it was legit so he used Schuko rather than UK sockets.

Guillaume advised he had some Denali 2000T units coming over and he would be happy to let me give them a go. It took a while and in the meantime I was able to test the stock M Euro lead vs some Russ Andrews Reference cables I had. I reterminated them with Wattgate Schuko heads for the test. Worth noting the RA plugs are built to last. Connections are all soldered inside those. Nice. Overall I think the RA cables performed well. Swapping back and forth made a small improvement over the stock cable but not huge.

Late Spring and the Denali's arrived. I asked for 2 units as the location of my DSP's and furniture means that I cannot really run one unit between the DSP's. Guillaume also lent me some Delta NR cables to test against the various leads I had been using. Denali uses a C19 high-current input connector so I modified a couple of Euro cables with new Wattgate plugs.

So, I ran with this for a couple of months. I was open to there being some effect or zero effect. Nothing taken for granted.

I ran several different combinations so I could try to isolate what did or didn't produce any SQ effects.

For example:-

Stock cables vs Delta NR cables (no Denali)
Stock cables into and out of Denali
Mixture of cables with Denali
Delta NR with Denali

Running demos over many weeks/months is a really good thing. There is definitely something about long listening over many styles of music, times of day, moods, weathers etc. I think the brain really does "tune in" to a sound/SQ and it isn't a quick process. However, once you have tuned in it is easy to swap between setups to notice the differences.

So, what is the result? It was actually very easy to hear a difference. With the Denali's between DSP and wall socket the clarity from the DSP's significantly and repeatably improved. The 3-D soundstage seemed to lock into place better. Everything seemed to be placed somewhere specific in front of me. Bass was clearer; voices and strings more credible and cymbals seemed to decay longer. On several tracks I did hear some new things especially low level sounds and really far back in the mix. There are probably a load more magazine type comments I could use but hopefully you get the gist.

I did several sessions with my trusted Mrs L and she picked 100% when I had Denali in or out of the system. She couldn't see what I was doing nor understood what I was doing when I made changes. It still sounded like my hifi but simply better in all areas I focussed on. Weirdly I was hoping she would hear no changes and I could then convince myself I was suffering from some expectation bias.

What about the cables? Having left the Denali's running with Delta NR for a few weeks, I swapped back to the stock cables. I was rather hoping that the Denali were creating most of the improvement and that I could stick with my existing cables. However, the Russ Andrews Ref and stock cables with the Denali just didn't sound as good. Again Mrs L's ears picked this 100% of the swaps I did and she had no idea what I was changing. I then compared Delta NR vs stock cable into DSP and the difference is clear. I could demonstrate that both cables and Denali are having a positive impact.

In the Jan 2017 post I referenced above Crion shared some of the Shunyata videos. These are interesting but maybe my home is different. A few weeks ago and at the end of all my testing, Guillaume bought round one of the noise detection devices (Entech Powerline Noise Analsyer) he'd borrowed from the Shunyata team who had been in the UK for a visit. We tested them on my setup. Here are the results in short video clips:-

Video 1...plugged into one of my new sockets and set to about 100 on the volume scale on the handheld unit. This shows that there IS noise on my lines even though they come from a dedicated consumer unit. This is probably not a surprise as we know power delivery to my house will be noisy but still I was a bit disappointed. Settings were left exactly the same for all other tests for comparison.


Video 2...same socket but a Denali plugged into the OTHER socket. The noise level drops by about 15 units (exact same volume setting). This means that even though these are SEPARATE lines the effect of a Denali on one line is evident on the other as they meet back at the consumer unit. This was quite a surprise and perhaps goes to show how much our circuits are interacting with each other.


Video 3...what about the output from the Denali? This was quite a shock.


Now this is not a fully scientific test with spectrum analysers etc but it is just a way to audibly demonstrate whether something is or is not happening. I am glad I did this at the end of the tests/demos as it endorsed my findings rather than influenced them up front.

So, to reference back to my 2005 post where I wanted to know what might be causing a change in SQ, this time I had a pretty good idea from both extensive periods of listening (both casual and in "test mode") along with some indicative device measurements. Noise on the power feed into the DSP's is a very real thing (in my house at least) and reducing it is very beneficial.

I started out with a notion that I had given my system a pretty clean power feed and that the SQ from the Anniversary system would be hard to improve. The starting point is a very fine SQ.

I conclude that even this system is impacted by mains noise and I can say with confidence that the effect of cleaning that is very obvious. I had no idea just how much difference it makes.

I am really impressed with the Denali units and also the NR cables. They do seem to do what they claim and to the ears that we have in this house that is a very good thing.

Thanks to Cleop and Crion for their earlier posts. Thanks also to Guillaume who was so patient with me as I slowly went through my test cycles over many months.

Hope this is of interest to others who might wonder if there is still room for improvement in their setups.


Rgds,
Nick

#15SE
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#269251 - 2017-10-24 11:14 Re: Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2) [Re: ncpl]
Registered: 2009-11-10
Posts: 1,272
CMB Integrations - Bruce Offline
Meridian Partner Working on the ultimate question
CMB Integrations - Bruce Offline
Meridian Partner
Working on the ultimate question

Registered: 2009-11-10
Posts: 1,272
Loc: Lexington, South Carolina, USA
So, did you buy the Denali's after the demo?


www.cmbintegrations.com

Personal System #1 Theta Digital Cassablanca 4, 218, DSP8000.2SE, DSP7200SEHC, Revel F228be, Revel B112, Monitor Audio Silver 10, ATI 200WX5 Amp, JVC RS15, Shunyata Denali 600S, Black Diamond Zero Edge screen. QNAP TS-251 3TB
Mark Levinson No515 Turntable

Crestron control and multi room audio via Meridian 258 amplifiers.
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#269264 - 2017-10-24 13:34 Re: Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2) [Re: CMB Integrations - Bruce]
Registered: 2002-02-14
Posts: 8,414
ncpl Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government
ncpl Offline

President of the Imperial Galactic Government

Registered: 2002-02-14
Posts: 8,414
Loc: Surrey, UK
Yes...I did.


Rgds,
Nick

#15SE
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#269274 - 2017-10-24 15:37 Re: Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2) [Re: ncpl]
Registered: 2004-10-20
Posts: 1,436
GMT Offline
Working on the ultimate question
GMT Offline
Working on the ultimate question

Registered: 2004-10-20
Posts: 1,436
Loc: Cambridge, Cambs, UK
Hi Nick

Thanks for the write up. Following your tests, would say that there wan't much benefit from installing the dedicated consumer unit?

Cheers
Tom


Main: G68J, 218 HD621, 3*5200s (2 SE L&R),DSW, 2* Reviver, 3200s,SBT, PS4, Amazon TV Fire, Dune Base 3.0, Xbox, NUC (Roon server & Kodi)
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#269275 - 2017-10-24 16:24 Re: Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2) [Re: GMT]
Registered: 2002-02-14
Posts: 8,414
ncpl Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government
ncpl Offline

President of the Imperial Galactic Government

Registered: 2002-02-14
Posts: 8,414
Loc: Surrey, UK
Good question. Originally with 5500’s and old room layout yes. When I had the new lines installed on 8kSE I also thought yes. Note huge change but I felt it was worth doing.

There is nothing on these lines except the DSP’s. They are separate from the other house boards until they join at the Henley block. The rest of my house if full of electronics just like everyone else.


Rgds,
Nick

#15SE
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#269287 - 2017-10-25 07:09 Re: Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2) [Re: ncpl]
Registered: 2011-08-22
Posts: 1,562
Not'arf Offline
Working on the ultimate question
Not'arf Offline
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Registered: 2011-08-22
Posts: 1,562
Loc: Abruzzo, Italy
A very interesting write-up.

If the results are so impressive, would you consider a separate spur / Denalis for your 808 etc?


Audio: MC200, G61R SL, HD621, DSP5500, 5500HC, DSP3100. Subs: 2 x REL G2.
Video: JVC X70, Black Diamond Zero Edge screen 129"(2.35).

Meridian owner since 1998
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#269292 - 2017-10-25 08:17 Re: Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2) [Re: Not'arf]
Registered: 2002-09-29
Posts: 204
RGraham Offline
Hitchhiker
RGraham Offline
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Registered: 2002-09-29
Posts: 204
Loc: London, UK
Really interesting.

Would Shunyata have recommended a 6000EU if your layout made that possible?

I think the whole area of mains electricity and noise seems evermore complex. After good reviews and a strong recommendation, I have recently tried a CAD GC1 grounding box on my network, and with the NUC that hosts Roon ROCK, both with excellent results. But when I tried one on the case of a PS Audio P5 the result was mind blowing. I am looking at trialling a GC3 with my DSPs and 861/818. Whether our homes are just more fogged up now, I know not, but the reduction of harshness is impressive.

But it does sound like a Denali would do something really useful, without the usual side-effects.

Really appreciate these insights.

Richard


Zone 1: 861v8+ID41, 818V3, HD621, DSP7200SE, DSP5200SE
Zone 2: 818v3, DSP7000, Cavalli Liquid Gold, Hifiman HE-6
Zone 3: 818v3, Roon ROCK/NUCi7, Densen B-330, Monitor Audio PL 200
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#269295 - 2017-10-25 14:18 Re: Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2) [Re: ncpl]
Registered: 2017-05-27
Posts: 160
_M_ Offline
Hitchhiker
_M_ Offline
Hitchhiker

Registered: 2017-05-27
Posts: 160
Loc: Manhattan, NYC, USA
i guess Bob Stuart et al. are idiots for saying the DSP's sound best when plugged directly into regular outlet.

and 80% of the markup of the Denali are in that case and feet.

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#269296 - 2017-10-25 15:10 Re: Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2) [Re: _M_]
Registered: 2010-01-24
Posts: 739
Altus Offline
Paranoid android
Altus Offline
Paranoid android

Registered: 2010-01-24
Posts: 739
Loc: Midlands, UK
I don't think they are idiots at all but then neither is Nick. My experience of the Shunyata products on high end analogue equipment, also with a dedicated mains supply, mirrors Nick's findings exactly.


Cinema: 861v4, DSP5500(F), DSP5500HC(C), DSP5500(R) - all for sale
Streaming: Roon, NUC, QNAP859 NAS
2ch system: Ultra DAC, analogue amps and speakers
Retro system: 101/104/105, analogue speakers
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#269310 - 2017-10-25 23:32 Re: Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2) [Re: Altus]
Registered: 2010-02-09
Posts: 154
JohnSWimer Offline
Hitchhiker
JohnSWimer Offline
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Registered: 2010-02-09
Posts: 154
Loc: San Francisco, CA, USA
Great post and your effort much appreciated. I often struggle in this area as it is hard to do an A/B comparison. Thank you for doing it for us.

John


1: 808.5 Anniversary, 504, Oppo BDP-103, Apple TV, HD621, 861v8, 7200SEU l/r/c, 33 sides, 5200 rear, Sim2 Lumis & Schneider lens, Stewart Filmsreen, SR20 fuses where they count
2: Theta Compli Blu, Apple TV, HDMax421, G68ADV, G55, B&W Sig 8NT l/r/c, 8180 rear & Runco Plasma
3: G91A, 3100, Sony PS-FL5 turntable
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#269313 - 2017-10-26 08:29 Re: Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2) [Re: Altus]
Registered: 2002-02-14
Posts: 8,414
ncpl Offline
President of the Imperial Galactic Government
ncpl Offline

President of the Imperial Galactic Government

Registered: 2002-02-14
Posts: 8,414
Loc: Surrey, UK
Originally Posted By Not'arf
A very interesting write-up.
If the results are so impressive, would you consider a separate spur / Denalis for your 808 etc?
Yes/ yes. The 808 is already on a ring main fed from the same consumer unit that the radials come from. That does not sit with the DSP so I didn’t have to link to the new radials. That circuit has skybox, Dune, ATV, Kuro media box, turntable. I tested that too for noise and it was similar to the others. It could actually be noise from those devices getting back into the radials as well as external noise on the house feed. I’ll try and test that theory by unplugging them all. Plugging a Denali 6000 here had the same effect on noise measurement.

Originally Posted By RGraham
Really interesting.

Would Shunyata have recommended a 6000EU if your layout made that possible?
I tested a Denali 6000 to drive the 808 and other units but didn’t add that to the write-up as I thought it better to focus on DSP for now. The results were very good and threw up some interesting things about phase.

On the 6000 there are 2 high current outlets (for amps) and 4 outlets for other front-end gear. So, it would be possible to run the whole system if everything was arranged in between a simple L>>rack<<R setup. Guillaume describes some clients that do exactly this.
IIRC Cleop drives both DSP’s from a single 2000T.

DSP speakers are an interesting challenge as they are both amp and front end gear (e.g. DSP and DAC). That was my original query to the US tech folks.

Originally Posted By Altus
I don't think they are idiots at all but then neither is Nick. My experience of the Shunyata products on high end analogue equipment, also with a dedicated mains supply, mirrors Nick's findings exactly.
Thank you (too kind wink ) I didn’t know you also had found the same.


Rgds,
Nick

#15SE
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#269320 - 2017-10-26 14:57 Re: Power Conditioning DSP8000SE (Part 2) [Re: Altus]
Registered: 2017-05-27
Posts: 160
_M_ Offline
Hitchhiker
_M_ Offline
Hitchhiker

Registered: 2017-05-27
Posts: 160
Loc: Manhattan, NYC, USA
but this is not analogue equipment.

doubt M would chime in on this.

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