Surge and Conditioning

Hi all, I have a Marantz SR5011 and McIntosh MC300 as the main components in my system. I live where we have lightning throughout the summer. I am contemplating adding a surge protector and power conditioner to the system. I have an in wall 20a plug in and breaker. I don’t really want to spend $3000 for mcp500 but curious what more knowledgeable people here think about it?  Thanks in advance.


The OP got an interesting thread / dialogue going on with his initial post, an often debated topic of power, how big an impact it has in performance and the best solutions.

OP - your direction really depends on what you are looking to accomplish beyond Surge Protection.  Are you looking to clean up “dirty” power?  Are you looking to isolate each plug, eliminating any electrical interference prior to the plug?  Are you looking to provide more stable power that can deliver reserves of power if a demanding unit (amp) requires more power at times to reach peak performance? If you go with a Power Filter only, it can limit power delivered to a power hungry amp which can dampen dynamics, overall performance.

Deadhead mentioned Furman - if you wanted to jump into adding a power solution to your system Furman is a great product, value.  They are one if not the most trusted and used name in Professional Broadcasting Studios.  They are the brand the pros go to.  It’s not that some of the Audiophile brands aren’t as good but if you want a unit trusted in the field by those who are trusting their livelihood, great option.  I’m not affiliated with Furman, I do own the Elite 20 amp unit.  It’s a great filer but it’s not an isolated or power regenerator.  It’s not ideal for someone with a power hungry amp.  It is a better filter option than other units performing the same functions but not the right tool.  It also isn’t an isolator, if you are looking to isolate power for each unit, this unit doesn’t do that, either. 

You don’t need to break the bank to find unites that can filter, isolate and are not power limiting.  Power regenerations which is another level of providing max power to a hungry unit can get pricey.  There are some great boutique companies that build units using higher grade parts than most, the engineering behind design on these units isn’t a secret, so if they know how to design, build the unites you’ll get great performance with better parts for a much better price.  I’d buy something that filters, isolates and isn’t limiting on power.  That removes the dirty power, isolated the units you are plugging in meaning any interference or noise isn’t coming from your power grid or other appliances, items plugged in and the units won’t be bottlenecked on available power.  This can make a marked improvement in performance depending on your gear, requires a well engineered product with quality parts.  Doesn’t require any fancy marketing, audiophile terms or some newly discovered technology.  I’m in the North East and Pine Tree Audio is a great option but there are plenty of smaller manufactures with the passion, know how that offer products with great performance and value relative to the more well known brands. 




your post summed this up perfectly for me in a way I have been struggling to articulate. I am looking for surge protection and noise reduction by cleaning up some dirty power, likely due to the coax cable that comes in near the 20 a plug in (I should have designed that differently from the beginning but too late now. I am looking for a device that won’t limit current to the main mc300 amp either. So here are my questions:

would it need to regenerate power to be able to achieve this?

I keep reading how SurgeX doesn’t use MOV and to stay away from anything that does, but I have no idea how valid those comments are? Seems to be from folks in high lighting areas so I’m paying attention to that, but maybe for the wrong reasons. 

I added a ground loop isolator for the coax cable, but should I run this through a device as well?  I’m not seeing too many that offer the coax piece, or if I do, I’m not sure if they do the other parts of this (non limit the main power amp and subs, and clean the power).


I appreciate your guidance and will check out pine tree today as well. Thanks!

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