power cords

do they make a big impact on video? say for a dvd player or plasma dsiplay...
Hello Metro04 - well, I thought the "miles of wire" myth had been thoroughly debunked, but I see that it lives on.

There are no "miles" of anything in the power grid - it is a series of interconnected systems and structures (generating stations, transmission grids, substations, distribution grids, distribution busses, regulator banks, taps, stepdown transformers, meters, distribution panels, and then finally the wiring contained in your home). The electrical energy transmitted through these systems undergoes frequent changes in voltage and regulation. There are dozens, even hundreds of connections, each of which constitutes a separate circuit, not one long continuous circuit. Thinking of these interconnected systems as some sort of long link as you have suggested is just plain wrong. Looking at it that way is like looking at the telephone communications network as a long wire between you and the phone company, which is equally wrong.

"Audiophile" power cords can indeed affect the performance and sound of gear, but not because they have an effect on what happens back at the power generation station or in the transmission grid. Contrary to the notions of some audiophiles, most of the noise found in household electrical systems and radiated into the environment as RFI/EMI is generated in the house, by household equipment, not back at the power plant or on the transmission grid.

Don't think of a power cord as the "final 3-6 feet," because it's not. There is a connection made at the wall outlet, not a contiguous link, which means that the power cord and the wiring in your walls ARE NOT THE SAME.

Since the bulk of noise and radiated energy are generated in your house, that 3-6 ft of connection from your gear to the wall outlet or powerbar can make a difference. A power cord that rejects RFI/EMI, whether in the household electrical system or radiated, can noticeably improve the sound of a resolving audio system.

Not all "audiophile" cords can do this - some have no effect, some can make things worse. Interaction with the equipments' power supplies can have an effect as well - positive or negative. Not all gear can show the difference between power cords. But claiming that all power cords that attempt to ameliorate the effects of noise are "snake oil" is dogmatic and incorrect.


It was asumed that most readers already knew what was meant by "miles of wiring" with regards to interconnected systems. My point was that the entire system was basically unshielded and suseptical to all kinds of radio and atmospheric bombardment. Granted, your final step-down transformer isolates you from most of it, but there's still the lines between it and your breaker box, and finally to each and every wall outlet. There is NO further isolation transformer after your breaker box, so anything that gets picked up along the way, gets dumped into each and every outlet. You adding a 3-6 foot "audiophile" cord at the wall outlet, can do absolutely nothing to improve upon the footage of non-audiophile "Romex" wiring within the sheetrock walls. What kind of magic do you think is taking place within the wall outlet? Each and every one of those three contacts heads right back to the breaker box, via unshielded non-audiophile wiring and breakers, right out to the stepdown transformer. No shielding, filtering, decoupling, isolation techniques, nothing. Explain to me how ANY 3-6 powercord technology can create some kind of magic between the outlet and equipment, with regards to the entire house wiring. Instead of placebo, get your hands on some quality test equipment which will prove my argument. And believe me, it's NOT just my opinion. Anyone with background in substantial electronics knows better as well.

metro04 everyone has been through all these arguements. You are simply wrong. It doesn't matter at all what happens for the first 100 miles of cable, the last six feet or sixty feet make a cost effective difference in the quality of the sound or the picture. Everyone that has tried it agrees.

Maybe you can write up a little thesis about your experience and show the rest of us how our EXPERIENCE is wrong.

I know serveral electrical engineers and electricians who argued the theory the whole time we discussed but have replaced their cables, outlets and PCs since hearing the difference.

Classic defense! There is science behind everything that happens, for which you've yet to explain how these so-called hi-tech cables perform. Common sense says you're wrong. I can't even begin to speculate on the amount of blind panel testing done where so-called "seasoned" audiophiles fail to tell the differences. I'm sure psychology majors have a clinical term for this kind of blind belief.
Metro04, give it up! You will never convince those who have 'heard the difference', when 'seeing is NOT believing'.