Isolation Transformer and Balanced Power versus PS Audio Regenerator

Pallen

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Jun 26, 2018
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The more power the better I think.
8 sockets to be occupied.

8 amps in 2 active speakers . (2 power cords) 600w each =1200w ( 800 VA)
Extreme from Taiko ( 400 VA)
Totaldac 24 that is 8 boxes solution (one powercord) ( total of around 250VA)
Totaldac Drivers 2 boxes ( 2 power cords) ( 100 VA)
2 external power supplys for USB and Eter Regen ( 2 powe cords) (150 VA)

So total trafos used is 1700 VA


Actually Kris, 'the more power the better' is not the case based on the research I've done. I was advised by a transformer maker that running a smaller transformer at 70% - 80% of its capacity will sound better. 213Cobra was advised something similar by the maker of his Hovland transformer. Perhaps Paul at ZAxis has a view on this?
 
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Rocco I.

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An excellent soulution is to use the outstanding Adyton Isovolt K6 balanced trafo plus the superb power conditioner Burmester 948.
 

JayDee

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Hello Phil. It's several years since I corresponded with you about tube amps and speakers. At the time, you shared some great insights and advice which were very helpful indeed. My system now is similar to Keith R's which you have been involved with. I have different source equipment to Keith (TT + SUT + Tube phono and a CDP) but use the same MFA Baby Reference V2 Preamp into an Audio Research REF75SE driving Devore Gibbon X's. A system I'm perfectly happy with. My focus now is getting the very best out of it. And my power requirements are modest.

I purchased and tried 2 balanced transformers over a period of time. The 2nd one was a custom made Balanced 700VA EI Transformer (ie: not toroidal) made with high quality materials (eg OCC copper wiring etc). It's 700VA capacity was specified for my various source components, but I found I could also run my ARC REF 75SE amp off it without a problem. That gave me a significantly better result than any power regenerator or power conditioner I had tried until then. Not all my components benefited equally – it was my ARC amp and turntable that stepped up most with this Balanced EI Transformer in place.

Ron, to answer your question, you have to bear in mind that my experience of power regenerators and power conditioners was limited to Isotek and Nordost products. And my experience of the Isotek Genesis One Regenerator I tried was consistent with JayDee's comments above. It's over a year ago so I can't be highly specific, but I recall the sound being flat, bland, processed sounding and lacking in colour or naturalness. Like JayDee, I took it out of my sytem quite quickly and never felt the need to try it again. None of the power conditioners I tried did much for me either. I have since tried a Gigabyte conditioner whcih was significantly better than the other regenerators and conditioners, but not as involving as a well designed balanced power transformer.

Re the Z-Axis unit that Jaydee has, I read the posts by Paul of Z-Axis at length and flirted with taking a punt and buying one. But as I live in New Zealand, long distance shipping costs and exchange rates make it uncomfortably expensive. From Jaydee's comments, Paul's unit sounds very good and therefore a further demonstration that some Bal transformers are significantly better than others. Another UK brand I considered was Westwick which Spirit uses. They told me they use a Torus transformer in their unit, wound and made to their own specifications.

I ended up with a premium spec'ed power strip from Canada (Gutwire 8-Bar with Furutech NCF connectors) and that has given me the best results so far, more naturalness & colour which matter to me. But if I win the lottery, I may relook at a top notch Balanced Transformer from Z-Axis, Westwick or Torus in the future.
a good note. Exhange rates and locations impact hugely on decisions. My balanced unit is set up in a 4 digital 2 analogue and 4 ‘power’ configuration. This is designed to stop digital noise getting into my analogue or power equipment. Z-axis website, under Symetrica is the best place to look if you want some more information. Each to their own but I wont take it out and it has become the hub or heart of my system. In fact i like the analogy if it being the the heart because it literally supplies the blood to everything. All music from a system is just an electrical current so it makes sense to me to get that right. Anyway, here are a couple of better photos for those interested
 

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JayDee

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that is very impressive.
pictures are great . Thx.
how much you paid for that gear ?
it was about £5,500 when i bought mine but he is on an SE version now withe NCF sockets and other enhancements so it may have changed. I recently tried an SE and will upgrade mine
 

LL21

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An excellent soulution is to use the outstanding Adyton Isovolt K6 balanced trafo plus the superb power conditioner Burmester 948.
Hi Rocco...very interesting. I just looked up your Adyton...seems quite beefy. Are you doing wall to Adyton to Burmester to equipment?

I literally just got the Torus AVR16 last week. Currently, they are setup:
Wall ---> Torus ---> Gryphon Mephisto and Nordost QX4
Nordost ---> Burmester 948 ---> pre/source

Is it true the Burmester 948 does not limit current in any way? Its what the manual says, enabling it to handle super big amps. For safety, the Mephisto goes into the Torus only...and this was after checking with both Torus and Gryphon manufacturing first...but I decided NOT to put the Amp into the Burmester.

Thanks for any insights.
 
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bonzo75

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Hi Rocco...very interesting. I just looked up your Adyton...seems quite beefy. Are you doing wall to Adyton to Burmester to equipment?

I literally just got the Torus AVR16 last week. Currently, they are setup:
Wall ---> Torus ---> Gryphon Mephisto and Nordost QX4
Nordost ---> Burmester 948 ---> pre/source

Is it true the Burmester 948 does not limit current in any way? Its what the manual says, enabling it to handle super big amps. For safety, the Mephisto goes into the Torus only...and this was after checking with both Torus and Gryphon manufacturing first...but I decided NOT to put the Amp into the Burmester.

Thanks for any insights.

Adyton is a brand of electronics made by the Norwegian distributor of burmester and gryphon.
 

Uk Paul

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Actually Kris, 'the more power the better' is not the case based on the research I've done. I was advised by a transformer maker that running a smaller transformer at 70% - 80% of its capacity will sound better. 213Cobra was advised something similar by the maker of his Hovland transformer. Perhaps Paul at ZAxis has a view on this?

Thank you all for the positive comments; all very welcome at this moment in time..

Part of the design of the Symetrica allows for the transformer loading to be monitored via the switchable displays on the Standard and SE models. As you load a transformer the output voltage drops, so we designed the transformers to run at parity at 65%, leaving some headroom for large dynamic swings. This mainly applies to the main large transformer that powers the amplifiers, with the source / low current draw transformers staying steady hence 300VA proving optimal. Another undesirable if using an over sized transformer is stray capacitance, so we tend to use the 1.5 and 2Kva in most cases.

Our website will be updated soon to include the 2 new models, SE and Nocturne..

Kris, we are in the process of doing the design for your transformer and will update once complete, with all the shuffling going on at the moment things are taking a bit longer..

Stay safe everyone..
 
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LL21

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Adyton is a brand of electronics made by the Norwegian distributor of burmester and gryphon.
No kidding...that is quite cool.
 

Kris

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Mar 4, 2019
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Thank you all for the positive comments; all very welcome at this moment in time..

Part of the design of the Symetrica allows for the transformer loading to be monitored via the switchable displays on the Standard and SE models. As you load a transformer the output voltage drops, so we designed the transformers to run at parity at 65%, leaving some headroom for large dynamic swings. This mainly applies to the main large transformer that powers the amplifiers, with the source / low current draw transformers staying steady hence 300VA proving optimal. Another undesirable if using an over sized transformer is stray capacitance, so we tend to use the 1.5 and 2Kva in most cases.

Our website will be updated soon to include the 2 new models, SE and Nocturne..

Kris, we are in the process of doing the design for your transformer and will update once complete, with all the shuffling going on at the moment things are taking a bit longer..

Stay safe everyone..

No problem waiting.
I will be testing Keces next week to see if balanced power in general is my cup of tea.
I am quite sure it will because there is VERY audiable difference during the day and at night.
Best starts after 10 pm.

Thank you Paul For info.
I cant wait to try your design in my system.
Would you be willing to elaborate a little more what additional ways of cleaning the power you use
except of 3 balanced transformers ?
How your design is different / better from many others in the market ?
Best
Kris
 

Uk Paul

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We keep it as simple as possible Kris, a DC filter of 16,500 uF is all that is required. The transformers do the rest. Start up is handled by a 2 stage process, a current limiting switch and direct switch in parallel. This proved better sonically than relays etc..

To my knowledge, no other unit uses multiple circuits, this is key to get the best out of the principle of balanced power, the improvement is not subtle either, and immediately obvious..

KR,
Paul
 
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Rocco I.

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Apr 26, 2012
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Hi Rocco...very interesting. I just looked up your Adyton...seems quite beefy. Are you doing wall to Adyton to Burmester to equipment?

I literally just got the Torus AVR16 last week. Currently, they are setup:
Wall ---> Torus ---> Gryphon Mephisto and Nordost QX4
Nordost ---> Burmester 948 ---> pre/source

Is it true the Burmester 948 does not limit current in any way? Its what the manual says, enabling it to handle super big amps. For safety, the Mephisto goes into the Torus only...and this was after checking with both Torus and Gryphon manufacturing first...but I decided NOT to put the Amp into the Burmester.

Thanks for any insights.

HI.

The Adyton Isovolt K6 is a superb component with unlimited load (6 Kw). It is connected to the wall by a Valhalla 2 power cord. Into it are plugged my monos power amps (Burmester 911 Mk3) and the Burmester 948 power conditioner. Into the 948's are plugged my preamp (Burmester 808 Mk5) and cd player (Burmester 069). Additionally the Adyton Isovolt K6 has two inputs for the ground; one input ground is connected using the Nordost Qrt line ground wire to a dedicated/designated external ground rod with very low resistance path; the other one is plugged to the Nordost Qkore 6. Such soulution is in terms of sound truly outstanding.

I confirm the 948's does not limit current in any way,, because I've always prefer to use my power amps directly plugged into 948's, instead to wall socket. Even a friend of mine who owns the Burmester 909 monos, prefer to use them through the 948's. But now with Adyton's the sound performance is better by a wide margin in all concerns.
 

LL21

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Dec 26, 2010
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HI.

The Adyton Isovolt K6 is a superb component with unlimited load (6 Kw). It is connected to the wall by a Valhalla 2 power cord. Into it are plugged my monos power amps (Burmester 911 Mk3) and the Burmester 948 power conditioner. Into the 948's are plugged my preamp (Burmester 808 Mk5) and cd player (Burmester 069). Additionally the Adyton Isovolt K6 has two inputs for the ground; one input ground is connected using the Nordost Qrt line ground wire to a dedicated/designated external ground rod with very low resistance path; the other one is plugged to the Nordost Qkore 6. Such soulution is in terms of sound truly outstanding.

I confirm the 948's does not limit current in any way,, because I've always prefer to use my power amps directly plugged into 948's, instead to wall socket. Even a friend of mine who owns the Burmester 909 monos, prefer to use them through the 948's. But now with Adyton's the sound performance is better by a wide margin in all concerns.


Fantastic! Looks like you, Aussienuet and I have all ended up with the same set up on how we plug components in. And on my end, I have also grounded the Torus AVR16 to the Tripoint Troy along with the amps directly. And then the Burmester 948 is actually fed by a Nordost QX4. Thanks for the insights.
 

QuadDiffusor

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I’m curious whether anyone has had any experience placing a ‘balanced“ bifilar toroidal transformer between the output duplex of a PS Audio AC regenerator (such as the P12, P15, or P20) and a source component‘s power supply.

Bifilar toroidals weigh nearly twice as much as an equivalent generic toroidal. From the website of the manufacturer of bifilar toroidal, Plitron, who supplies toroidals to Torus:

https://www.plitron.com/custom-toroidal-transformers/power-conditioning-2/

“The Balanced Power concept consists of a 1:1 isolation transformer (ie 120 VAC In/Out) with a centre tapped secondary winding. The ‘Balanced’ refers to a Bifilar wound secondary – meaning both secondary halves are wound simultaneously, turn for turn – thus each of the 60 Volt sections are mirror imaged and matched to the theoretical limit for resistance, capacitance, and inductance.”

Specifically, I’m interested in connecting a bifilar transformer (products from Equi=tech, PLiXiR, or Torus) at the PS Audio P20’s output duplex to power my two MSB Technology mono powerbases, perhaps in the future, MSB Technology transport’s powerbase. This, to reduce whatever noise there may be in the ground connection, as well as in the rest of the AC sine wave (both common-mode, as well as higher frequency noise from 1kHz upwards).

Although the P20’s claim to fame is its dynamic voltage regulation and low output impedance (ability to deliver oodles of current on demand), it‘s still extremely susceptible to noise on the AC input which easily passes through to even its supposedly “regenerated” AC outputs, and generates its own idiosyncratic wide-band high frequency noise, hence my curiosity in adding a balanced transformer...
 
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LL21

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I certainly have seen one member(Aussienut) run wall to Torus to PS Audio to Source. Ozzy runs wall to Torus to Burmester 948 to source, and so do I. Ozzy tried both ways (wall to Burmester 948 to Torus to source...and preferred Torus to Burmester 948 to source). I have not tried it mainly because i was concerned if Burmester 948 could handle the power requirements of the Gryphon...apparently it can, but i am happy and do not want to take any chances.
 
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I’m curious whether anyone has had any experience placing a ‘balanced“ bifilar toroidal transformer between the output duplex of a PS Audio AC regenerator (such as the P12, P15, or P20) and a source component‘s power supply.
<SNIP>
Although the P20’s claim to fame is its dynamic voltage regulation and low output impedance (ability to deliver oodles of current on demand), it‘s still extremely susceptible to noise on the AC input which easily passes through to even its supposedly “regenerated” AC outputs, and generates its own idiosyncratic wide-band high frequency noise, hence my curiosity in adding a balanced transformer...
I am wondering this exact same thing. I am considering either or both of a PSA P20 and the Equi=Tech 2RQ, as well as the Niagara 7000 and the Torus AVR2 20. I have two PSA P10 units right now, and it's about time for an upgrade to the P20—or side grade to something else. I like what the regenerators do, but I also like what the isolation transformer units do. I am also curious whether there is a sound engineering basis for placing one before the other.
 
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QuadDiffusor

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I am wondering this exact same thing. I am considering either or both of a PSA P20 and the Equi=Tech 2RQ, as well as the Niagara 7000 and the Torus AVR2 20. I have two PSA P10 units right now, and it's about time for an upgrade to the P20—or side grade to something else. I like what the regenerators do, but I also like what the isolation transformer units do. I am also curious whether there is a sound engineering basis for placing one before the other.
I received a reply on the PS Audio forum; hope this helps. Please post your comments, if any!
https://forum.psaudio.com/t/power-plant-and-noise/8813/18
 

QuadDiffusor

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I found a wonderful White Paper written by Audioquest's Garth Powell, which help demystify many of the questions I've had on AC power conditioning; highly recommended reading!

https://forum.psaudio.com/t/power-plant-and-noise/8813/29

I'll be buying two PLiXiR Elite BAC 400s (toroidal BITs) for my two MSB Select II DAC's powerbases.

https://soundnews.net/accessories/plixir-elite-bac-400-power-conditioner-review/

Depending on the audition results on my DAC, I may be rotating the BITs into other source components, or perhaps buying even more of them - stay tuned !
 
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QuadDiffusor

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A video from Munich 2015 with Garth Powell, to get reacquainted to the fundamentals of AC noise treatment:
 

QuadDiffusor

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I’m reminded how much RF garbage is present on the Ground line; a AM/FM radio is a pretty good device to test just how well Ground conductors are behaving as antennas.

Im curious - has anyone actually measured how much RF the so-called kitty-litter grounding boxes “drain”? My understanding is that absolutely nothing drain into the boxes, but rather the connecting cable becomes an antenna to add RF energy INTO the connected component, ADDING (rather than subtracting) noise. Paradoxically, this results in the smoothing of sound due to masking. Oh well, discussions related to this topic would perhaps best be left to another WBF thread.
 
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QuadDiffusor

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