Academy Dashboard Forum Studio Gear Talk Balanced Power Conditioners : Do you or Voodoo?

  • This topic has 6 replies, 3 voices, and was last updated 8 years ago by Tobi.
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  • #6219

      Does anyone use or know of someone using a Balanced Power Conditioner?

      Furman P-2300 IT E

      I have a low frequency pulse / noise from 20hz down to 1hz (using Voxengo Span for analysis). Can't seem to get rid of it.

      Tried different cable arrangements, Line Level Isolators, DIs, Ground Lifts, Quality Cables, Steel Conduits, separate racking of kit, metal racks, wooden racks, Hum Frees, ferrite beads, wood, plastic, twisting cables, extra wraps / shielding for cables, different length and diameter of power cable, turning everything else off in the apartment, prayer, chicken bones, let my beagle 'Enzo' have a sniff about - see if could smell something...

      There's an Electrical Sub-Station at the end of my street - I've read that can cause problems... but the thought of 3,690 euros for the Balanced Power Conditioner causes a sudden, sharp pain in the wallet area.

      Any thoughts, advice, experience or just sentiments of sympathy would be greatly appreciated 🙂


        *In the interest of clarity (no pun intended), I should add that many of the things I listed above would not tackle a 20hz noise. Ferrite Cores, for example, deal with extremely high frequency noise in the tens to hundreds of megahertz and above (depending on - I think - the density of Ferrite). I just listed every I'd tried to clean up my system in general.

        ...Chicken Bones, on the other hand, are usually excellent at cleaning up low frequency noise 😉

        John Gleason

          What you might want to try is a Furman power strip/conditioner. The ones that focus more on conditioning are under 200 euros (at least in the U.S.). I'm not sure about your voltages locally. Before buying anything, I would call Furman (or other similar suppliers), explain your problem and get their suggestion of what to buy. Are you using any outboard gear? If so, one of those devices may be the source of your problem. Try disconnecting each outboard device one at a time and see if anything changes. Do the same with mics. Also, talk to your power company and see if they can help identify the source of the noise. You may also have noise sources (especially lights) in your house or your neighbors that are causing the noise (although these often are higher-frequency sources). Another idea, once you have proven that the noise in coming over the power line (and it may not be), is to look at some of the computer battery backup devices which run the computer off of the battery continuously (some do) which provides some isolation from the power line.

          Also, make sure to cross the chicken bones when poking around for a solution. 😉

          Good luck!


          • This reply was modified 8 years ago by John Gleason.

            Thanks for the reply!

            I do have a Furman Furman PL-8 CE. I actually took it out of my system. I had an odd pair of noise peaks at 400 and 600 hz, and I'd read in the 'Handbook for Sound Engineers', that RF noise filters and surge protectors can actually cause more problems, than they solve. But I might try putting it back in and seeing what happens.

            As you say, it could be many things - particularly living in an apartment.

            Analogue/Digital converters create low frequency noise, as does Electromagnetic Radiation between power cables of different current draw, and transformers are prone to picking up electromagnetic interference from nearby power supplies and power lines.

            Of course it could be because I simply forgot to cross the Chicken Bones!'s always something simple 😉

            Thanks again for the reply - have a great weekend!

            Steve A

              While maybe not targeted to your specific concern, I found this link helpful in my quest for a quieter studio..
              Cheers, and have a great weekend yourself!


                Thanks for the reply and the link! The article was an interesting read.

                I have high quality domestic surge protectors on my domestic appliances eg. fridge, air con, TV, home PC etc. The surge protectors have a RF filter built in.

                My channel strip is transformer isolated on all inputs / outputs and racked separately. Its power cable runs through its own steel conduit, with a ferrite clip for good measure.

                I've considered transformer isolating all my audio connections but it's expensive to do with quality transformers. Besides, I suspect the problem is with the incoming power, which Line Level Isolating wouldn't solve.

                It's become my own private obsession 😉 like Moby Dick! ...I'm hunting my whale 🙂

                Thanks again for the reply and the link - have a great weekend!


                  Solved! Thank God I downloaded Voxengo Span (freeware) - allowed me to measure frequencies all the way down to 1hz. It was static : the ferrite clamps will pulling the power cables out of their sockets just enough to cause a problem.

                  I had meant to check it, but forgot - d'oh. Always the simple solutions 🙂

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