Power Cord Review

I'm going to be performing power cord review for www.stereotimes.com. First review will be Power Cord shoot-out for power cords under $600. Power cords to be reviewed in initial article are following.
Harmonic Tech. PRO AC 11
Audio Magic Sorcerer
VooDoo Mana
Shunyata Sidewinder
ZuCable Birth
Acoustic Zen Krakatoa(over $600 but will be used as reference)
Acoustic Zen Tsunami
Custom Power Cord Co Model 11

I also was thinking about reviewing BMI Black Eel and Whale Elite(considering affordable price of Whale on Audiogon) and
"Absolute Power Cord" considering amount of controversy surrounding later cord on Audiogon discussions.

I was wondering should I exclude any of above cords from review(not enough interest for them, or they do not belong in the budget group) and did I miss any good contenders in that group. Any feedback will be highly appreciated and lead to the more usefull review.
Leon Rivkin
How about the Asylum cord made by Kevin Haskins? The PS Audio Lab cable? Bob Crump's TG Audio cords get great buzz too. I think the list could be pretty much endless. Are you trying to test cords with lotsa buzz under 6 Bens, or are there other criteria?

I would be really interested to see the review. When do you think it'll be ready?

Good luck and have fun. Wish I could join ya.
MIT Z-cord II is about $ 180. I have no idea of its relative merits other than I see it on spectral gear and some stores exclusively

At the risk of ridicule from the "more expensive is better"
crowd, why not include one of the cables from Belden. They
have a large variety of shielded and non-shielded power
cords, with hospital-grade terminations. I use one on my
Levinson 27.5 with excellent results. It's much heavier
than the stock cord, and I have a TDK EMI/RFI clamp on
filter over it for good measure. As I recall I paid about
$30 for the cord.
The PS Audio review would be intersting. It was the second choice in Michael Fremer's review this month, and is the new cable on the block. The winner costs, $1600 more. I hope you can put the comparisons into a value rating as well as a winner of the race type of listing. I would like to know how the $160 dollar Harmonic Technology PC rates next to a $600 PC. Lcat, keep us posted. Thanks.
Since the BMI Whale Elite is still offered at introductory prices (in your range), I would say that it is a "must" audition as I use two of them in my system. Another interesting manufacturer with little write up, though positive reviews from owners would be one of the Gutwire models. Also for approx. $50 and $65 the Absolute and Asylum cord would be good choices.
Leon, good list of cords for review. I would include BMI
cord eel/whale since they are quite popular and highly regarded. Also please do include Absolute cord which retails for $49, it will compete with cords you have in your list, time for some price reality in audiophile cords.
Ps: I also use the Absolute cords and have either owned and/or used the HT Pro 11 and the Sidewinder (on your list).
I support Jvogt's idea of including an inexpensive cable from Belden. I don't know your criteria or review methods but a cord such as a Belden is universally availabe and would make a good comparison baseline.
Ensemble Mega Powerflux (just under your $600 max criteria), and YES- definitely the Whale Elite (been waiting a long time for a good comparison review on that cord...).
Almost forgot- how about adding in the Coincident power cord? (~ $400??). All other Coincident cables are exellent.
This review sounds like it will take many months to complete. To be fair to all the manufactures, taking into account all the variables, equipment used, quality of incomeing AC and sometimes the lenght of breakin time required for the PC to stut its stuff. Sounds like a difficult chore but an interesting review that will be highly appreciated. Can't wait for the results.

Let me enclose some additional information.
Criteria’s for cord selections are following:
1) Price range – cord should be available new(from dealer or manufacturer direct) for under $600
2) Cords should have generated a lot of interest ever on Audiogon or AudioAsylum, or should be one of the cords I/my friends, discovered and found to be an interesting value minded product.
People involved in auditioning are going to be me, my fiancé(who have much better hearing), occasionally Bill Brassington and Clement Perry as well as some other audiophile friends.

All cords will be broken in for 3 weeks using about 1800 watts of load.
Cord failing during break-in based on current delivery limitations or heating will be excluded from roundup.

Review methodology. We will start with a system connected with HT PRO 11 AC power cords and will be replacing cords initially on source components and later on the amps.
At the end we will put one cord on source component and 2 cords on the amps. No tested cords will be placed on power conditioning unit.
Listening impressions would be recorded and compared later. Then we will move on another brand of cords. Essentially all cords will be compared to HT cords first and 2-3 better cords for each component will be compared to each other. Main goal of this review is more to describe what effect and to what degree those cords are going to introduce to the system rather then try to determine “Ultimate Powercord”

Systems to be used:
Main Rig:
Meadowlark Ibis speakers with upgraded active x-over and external power supply
VPI TNT V turntable with JWM 12 and Spectral Reference cartridge.
Sonic Frontiers Phono One SE
Sonic Frontiers Line 3 SE
BAT VK 60 mono-blocks driving treble/midrange
Sunfire Signature driving woofers
Sony 777ES used mostly as transport
Altis Reference DAC with all the latest upgrades
Perpetual Technologies P1A upsampler.
The Ortho Spectrum Analogue Reconstructor.
Power Conditioning by the way of 4 RGPC, PS Audio 300,Shunyata Hydra and 2 Quantum Symphony.
Speaker Cables are Acoustic Zen Satori and Wireworld Silver Eclipse III
Interconnects are Acoustic Zen Silver Ref (RCA), Wireworld Gold Eclipse III (XLR) and Analysis Plus Silver (XLR).
Digital Cables are Acoustic Zen MC-“Squared” and Purist Audio Proteus.
Accessories: Vantage Point rack, modified Osiris Equipment Stands, BDR shelves and cones, Simposium Rollerblock 2 isolation devices.
Room has extensive acoustic treatment and 6 Argent Room Lenses.

Effect of the cords on low frequency will be tested in
Small Rig:
Aiwa XP 37 CD changer modified by Stan Warren as transport.(Excellent transport and 5 disk changer on top of it)
Sonic Frontier D2D upsampler
Kora Hermes DAC
Kora Ecilpse Preamp
Kora Cosmos Monoblocks
(You could learn more about them at www.kora.net)
SCE Harmonic Recovery System
Apogee Ribbon Monitors.
Wires by Analysis Plus Silver and Acoustic Zen Matrix Ref.
Power Conditioning - 2 RGPC

Leon Rivkin
I suggest including the Synergistic Research Master Coupler. It is a standard of sorts and one of the most popular PCs ever-- in fact it probably set the standard for aftermarket power cords. At $325. it is still one of the best on the market. I've never even heard of some of those you've listed above. Cheers. Craig.
There are a lot of good Vansevers power cords under your price limit. You should also include a standard 14 AWG black cord from the Hardware store as a control.
Sugarbrie: Point well taken about standart 14 AWG cord although I would not be reintroducing them in to the whole system. About VansEvers - I have quite a few of their PC's incuding Double Pandora and although I personaly enjoy that cord a lot but I'm limited to about 8-12 pages of text and rather try to cover "hot" newcommeres(A lot of people semm to have questions about them). I might do it in another review after I finish second round dedicated to higher priced PCs. By the way estimated time to finish is about 1.5-2 month. Thanks to all people for posts.
Leon Rivkin
lcat: i do hope you get a spellchecker or rely on a good proofreader before you submit your review for publication. BTW, on what component(s) will you do your comparison? -kelly
Cornfedboy: look at my post starting with "let me enclose some additional information" 5 posts above this one.
Lcat: This sounds like quite an undertaking, but will be a great article of interest, I am certian, to our small masses. I don't envy you though as it usually takes me months to evaluate but a single product and I wish you luck on the project. Hope you have some fun with it as well.
lcat: understood. thanks. as dekay said, this is a huge undertaking. hope it's more fun than work. -kelly
Electra Glide Power Cord along with the Synergistic Research AC Master Coupler are the cords that started this whole power cord revolution, in many ways. They weren't the first audiophile power cords, but the first that really made people sit up and take notice. Also consider the Electra Glide Intro Glide.
Cardas Golden Reference, $420 for a five footer, no review at all so far so this would be a great time. Thanks
Please put two more PCs on the list for comparison:
NBS Serpent III or Monitor IV
Siltech SPO 18MF
Gutwire Cords, made in Canada, and they come with a "ground clip". Superb construction and they do help. I believe that the returns from Power Cords in general are small, but important, and just using anyone of those listed is the major factor. Between them all, I notice no differences. (I've tried various Cardas and the Gutwire).
I'd like to see you include Wasatch Cable Works in one of your reviews. It's Awasome cable. It kills Kimber Tara & Mit Z. You can call them or the e-mail address is www.wasatchcableworks.com Check them out.
Thanks Ben.

As anything in audio when we think to evaluate, options do jump all over the place.

It might be interesting to include an old good one to see where the power cord tech has driven us..... so what about including a long time favorite like Camelot Sir Bors. It´s in the price range and it offers a lot for the money
Add another vote for the Synergistic Master Coupler. It fits all the listed criteria and is a very popular cord. Was actually surprised that it wasn't on the original list.
I would include the pwr cords from Tek Line. I have tried some of there cords on my pwr amp and pre with excellent results. Good listening!
The Nordost El Dorado is worth a listen..though it may be
650.00 list, rather than your 600.00 limit.
This is a great idea for a review, but it sounds like a monumental undertaking. Perhaps this topic would be best split into several categories: 1)Is there a difference, and how large a difference relative to other tweaks (vs. other cable changes, power conditioning, etc); 2)Mid-priced cables (since you're starting with a mid-priced cable, the HT), between say $200-600 or so; 3)Low-priced cables, below $200; 4)High-priced cables.

And yes, indeed, do include the BMI Whale Elite and the Absolute PC- they are the most talked-about PCs on Audiogon. Adding the Synergistic M/C is great choice. And NBS. And the list goes on and on.

The potential for disaster (erroneous choices of winners and losers) is extraordinarily high in this massive a shootout. Please tread carefully.
Lcat, I suggest you also try Radio Shack's one of thoes Power surge protectors, one with high current capabilities($35.00 to $60.0), with multiple out let for your front end. It may knock your socks off.
I was going to keep this a secret but guilt is getting to me...

C.C. Poon at Monarchy Audio has a power cord for about $100 that has been great in my system. It's based on a propietary (patented?) Hitachi design. He bought all of the Hitachi stuff and had it made up into PC's. Anyone else tried this?

I have the Absolute PC, too. Not bad at all, especially for the money. I had a hodge-podge of mis-matched cords and needed 8 cords so cost was an issue. Like I said, not bad at all -- much better than Beldon. But check out the Monarchy cords -- if you don't like them you can return with a small re-stocking charge.
Jim - The Monarchy cords are pretty good. I like the plugs the light, flexible cord. However, I think that it is unfairly priced. Yes, $100 is cheap compared to $1,000 cords, but the parts and labor in the Monarchy cord don't seem to add up to $100. I guess that the standard 100 percent dealer mark-up is in the price, so maybe at $50 wholesale it is more reasonable.
Jaykapur, you are probably right about the mark-up. But... these cords made a great difference when connected to my Mesa Baron.(wider, deeper more black soundstage). I know that conventional wisdom says that PC's make a bigger difference at source components, but these are a nice addition to my power amp.

I think the intrinsic value in these cords is not in the construction, which is nice, but in what is underneath. But the surface appeal is nice, especially for the $$$.

If anyone is interested, check with Monarchy directly to get more accurate info than I can provide from memory. For me, these are the best value PC's out there. Not the *best*, but the best value according to my ears,l and in my system.
You should include TG Audio by Bob Crump in Houston.
In the cable-circle discussions his cords are well-regarded.
Tg Audio by Bob Crump PC, Bob is one of the nicest guy around, he gives away four of his cables free every year for audio asylum contribution.

Cardas ref golden cross, one of the most sought after cables. Please, no more review of Shuynata power snake cable, too much attention has been paid.
I second the comment by Manzoor to ditch the Shunyatas from the review. WAY too much hype surrounds these cords and it seems that lately people are selling them in droves. Why not try something different like some of the names listed on this thread?
You should include TG Audio by Bob Crump in Houston.
In the cable-circle discussions his cords are well-regarded.
Please do the Shunyata. Yours could be the definitive comparison and tell us if it is worth it or should be Shun(ned). Thanks.
Please include the LAT International AC-2 Power Cord in your survey. It is $129.00 per 6 ft length, making it a great value. I would be interested in hearing how the AC-2 stacks up vs. other power cords in the survey. The AC-2 uses 10 gauge "silverfuse" conductors (hi purity OFC copper drawn thru molten silver to form a "near alloy" - not silver-clad or plating), PTFE teflon, shielding, and a heavy duty IEC connector. More info is on the net at www.latinternational.com. I have not heard this cable yet, but I do own some LAT interconnects which I really like. I plan to upgrade my stock powercords shortly, and was planning to audition the LAT along with some of the cords already named in the survey, so it would be cool to have them all in one review!

I'm going to start this PC nonsense (?) by replacing my Belden 14AWG shielded with the Harm Tech AC11 I just found for sale here, first on my new CDP (Emc-1 MkII).
Any results posted? How's the Harmonich?
They were the first and still the best on the scene. I have compared the base model Master coupler to the Shunyata V2 and the Harm Tech. Shunyata sounded wooley compared to SMC and warmer than the Harm Tech. Ref. Coupler just kicks it up a notch by lowering the noise floor. A PC shootout would be a waste of time IMHO w/o the Synergistic Master Coupler.
Jim, my experience was similar to your 6-19-01 comment, "I know that conventional wisdom says that PC's make a bigger difference at source components, but these are a nice addition to my power amp." I'd originally connected a new BMI Whale to my Sony SCD-777ES player, and kept a BMI Eel on my Pass Aleph 3 amp. But I was surprised at how richer and deeper the sound became when I swapped them. The Whale, a great PC, will stay on the Pass amp, with the Eel connected to the 777 till I can afford to replace it with another Whale. My power cord hunt is over.