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Amp Power Cord

WillLane

Member
Messages
1,931
Have you ever investing in upgrading the power cord to your amp, and does it make much of a difference?

Here's an example of what is available from Lava @ around $85.
http://www.lavacable.com/index.php?id=193
I will save you the searching.

Any tonal difference there is, is not worth $85. In fact any tonal difference that may be there will ultimately be indistinguishable. Now if you wanted to pay $85 for a power cord that you could bungie with, bend over 180 degrees, chop in half and it still somehow work- then go for it.

I do not even know how they would test a power cord. A/B'ing something like that is dangerous. You could use two identical amps but at the level of criticism and scrutiny you would need to hear the difference between power cables, even just the solder connections (even machined PCB connections) might would make more a difference than the power cable methinks. Even a tiny bit of mic placement discrepancy or ear placement in the room would cause more tonal differences.

Presuming the power cord is of a reasonable, standard quality (like what you see typically when you get an amp), if one is worried about if their power cord is holding them back, they should really just go practice and put the money elsewhere.

Now from what I understand, extremely LONG extension cords can cause some problems but as long as you are not running absolute silly amounts, you will likely be fine. But with a cable like you listed above, the length is too small and comparable to normal power cables for it to matter.
 
Last edited:
Messages
1,052
Or send me the $85 and I'll send you a bottle of snake-oil guaranteed to make your amp sound better.

Cheers
TRJB

[Seriously - think about it... you've got 5-10 miles of whatever stuff the power company ploughed into the ground 50 years ago between your house and the power station; and then 25-50' of some kind of standard 14/2 roamex between the panel and your wall plug; and the last 4' connected from the wall plug to your amp is supposed to make a difference?]
 

dirtandstones

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,073
If you're really into the cord, go for the Mercury Copper-Tone power cord. Significantly less money ($25 max) and all the same great heavy duty construction.

I'll agree that the improvements on sound and noise will be marginal if not negligible.. Especially with a guitar amp. Plenty of snake oil and mojo on Mercury's website as well but the reality is that it's built like a tank and that's why I bought it.
 

Scott_F

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,984
Mercury sells upgraded power cables and they are 12 or 14 gauge wire. Most amp cords are 18. Not that expensive. 65amps ships with them. Not sure 12 or 14.

Typical newer homes are wired 12 gauge on a typical 20 amp circuit. 14 perhaps in some homes.

Figure out what gauge wire is used on the PT primary. Anything beefier than that is a waste.

In the end, I'm not too sure the electrons care.
 

MikeEd

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
961
Some people thing it's foolish to think about a cord upgrade and I agree that you can get carried away investing in new gear. I am asking about this because there is a lot about amplifiers that I don't know or am still learning about. I used to play electric when I was young and I am just getting back into it. I have been playing an acoustic for the last 26 years or so.

I have been using a 30 year old guitar cable with my Les Paul and recently tried a new cable and found there was a big difference in the sound. Also, the Bassbreaker 15w head I am using has a "ground lift switch" on it and I noticed a big difference in sound when I engaged it.

I also watched some videos on youtube about speaker cables and it seems like some cables sound better than others, so I ordered an upgrade. One guy also changed his power cord but I could not hear a difference. a power cord upgrade might not be needed, I am just inquiry to find out it others have had any improvements by changing the cord. I suppose a cheap cord might pick up noise by other instruments or lighting that are near by or on the same circuit.
 

Tiny Montgomery

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
8,860
Some people thing it's foolish to think about a cord upgrade and I agree that you can get carried away investing in new gear. I am asking about this because there is a lot about amplifiers that I don't know or am still learning about. I used to play electric when I was young and I am just getting back into it. I have been playing an acoustic for the last 26 years or so.

I have been using a 30 year old guitar cable with my Les Paul and recently tried a new cable and found there was a big difference in the sound. Also, the Bassbreaker 15w head I am using has a "ground lift switch" on it and I noticed a big difference in sound when I engaged it.
The ground lift for the line out changed the tone of the amp when you weren't using the line out? Even if you were using the LO, it should either just kill or introduce noise.
 

8len8

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
13,269
thank you for this. dratted millennials trying to start discussions on a discussion board.
A discussion that's taken place many times before. Just trying to inform someone of using the search feature to find the answers that already exist up here. "Give a man a fish, teach a man to fish...". If you don't agree with this then I'm sorry for you.
 

WhoJamFan

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,555
Have you ever investing in upgrading the power cord to your amp, and does it make much of a difference?

Here's an example of what is available from Lava @ around $85.
http://www.lavacable.com/index.php?id=193
$85-$199 it says on their site.
$25 for the Mercury, any color you want,as long as it's red.

"Hear the unmistakeable noise of the bar refrigerator and neon lights come through your amp with greater definition and clarity than ever before. 60 cycle hum turned into 60 cylcle bliss and stray interference pops now have a woody tone with haunting mids. I can actually hear the difference of the mechanical clicks in my true bypass pedals-like trains of tone water gushing through the floodgates on their way to tonal nirvana."-No One Ever

Oh yeah(;
 

R.C.Moran

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,257
$85-$199 it says on their site.
$25 for the Mercury, any color you want,as long as it's red.

"Hear the unmistakeable noise of the bar refrigerator and neon lights come through your amp with greater definition and clarity than ever before. 60 cycle hum turned into 60 cylcle bliss and stray interference pops now have a woody tone with haunting mids. I can actually hear the difference of the mechanical clicks in my true bypass pedals-like trains of tone water gushing through the floodgates on their way to tonal nirvana."-No One Ever

Oh yeah(;
I bought the mercury myself, not for any tonal advantage, but just because I wanted a heavier duty cable that wouldn't break. I've had thinner power cables get damaged, so I feel better about thicker wiring. For that I think the price is worth it.
 

jjjacksonjjj

Member
Messages
142
Power conditioner yes, with some gear; power cable upgrade no (once you are past the point of long, crap, undersized cables that could introduce very slight voltage drop, or faulty ones with loose connections or something).
 

GuitarToma

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
2,334
The only reason I would buy a custom power cable (and I never have FWIW) is to have something a bit more solid and to coil easier. Gigging can be tough on cords.

Sinasoid has started making power cables for about $40 and they have that nice teflon techflex stuff on them. Nice and durable.

I built my own power cable for my big pedalboard for about $30ish. Home Depot for the wall-end and 18 gauge cable, and I used a Neutrik PowerCon to go to the board itself. Coils up real nice, hella durable. I really like the Neutrik PowerCon as it locks in to place. It's so easy for anyone to trip over and yank on the pedalboard cable and IEC's unplug too easy for my taste.
 

MikeEd

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
961
Mercury sells upgraded power cables and they are 12 or 14 gauge wire. Most amp cords are 18. Not that expensive. 65amps ships with them. Not sure 12 or 14.

Typical newer homes are wired 12 gauge on a typical 20 amp circuit. 14 perhaps in some homes.

Figure out what gauge wire is used on the PT primary. Anything beefier than that is a waste.

In the end, I'm not too sure the electrons care.
The cord that came with the amp is 13 awg, I guess it working fine. If I ever need a longer one I'll try out the Mercury cable.
 




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