Better home audio, Tip #12: Use a power conditioner
Ralph Graves is one of Crutchfield's blog editors, and part of the company's social media team. He writes about home audio/video gear, specializing in Apple-related and wireless technologies. Ralph holds a master's degree in music composition, and his works have been released on various labels. He's served as product manager for an independent classical and world music label, produced several recordings, and worked extensively in public broadcasting. Since 1984 he's hosted a weekly classical music program on WTJU, and is also active as a blogger and podcaster.
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By its very nature, high-performance audio gear can be affected by things that don't significantly impact basic audio systems. Just as a high-resolution image reveals flaws not apparent in a a low-res version, so too advanced audio components are more sensitive to the fluctuations of the AC current coming into your home than your table radio. One of the ways to improve the overall performance of your system (and protect your investment at the same time) is to clean up the power coming into your components.
Tip #12: Use a power conditioner - protect your gear and improve its performance.
Many people think nothing of plugging sensitive, high-performance audio and video components into a $5 power strip. Well, we don't think much of it either. These general-purpose power strips don't offer adequate protection against damaging power spikes, and they seldom filter out the everyday electronic interference from your home's electrical appliances, phone lines, computers, and cable connections that can affect your system's performance.