P5 vs P10


#1

If my equipment presents a max load of 35% on a P5, is there any reason to believe a P10 will sound better in any way?


#2

Yes. Particularly lower impedance. It is a more sophisticated unit in many ways.


#3
Elk said Yes. Particularly lower impedance. It is a more sophisticated unit in many ways.
So how do these things actually improve the sound in any meaningful way?

#4

Elk is right. It isn’t the load it’s the impedance which is magnitudes lower than what the wall provides and that’s the key to why Power Plants sound the way they do.


#5
Paul McGowan said Elk is right. It isn't the load it's the impedance which is magnitudes lower than what the wall provides and that's the key to why Power Plants sound the way they do.
So what is the difference between the P5 and P10 output impedances and how does it translate to a difference in sound?

#6
miniguy said So how do these things actually improve the sound in any meaningful way?
"These things" meaning P5 v. P10, or are you asking why cleaner power means better sound?

#7
Elk said
miniguy said So how do these things actually improve the sound in any meaningful way?

“These things” meaning P5 v. P10, or are you asking why cleaner power means better sound?


I mean P5 vs P10. The specs show same output impedance for both, so why should I spend extra on the P10 if I’m only needing to draw a max of 300W? What am I getting for the additional $1500?

#8

The specs may be the same (<0.015 ohm), but the P10 is better able to maintain a lower impedance and lower distortion over a greater range of input conditions and loads; neither power nor music is static and load is only one aspect. The P10 results in a more effortless, more transparent sound. As with most things, however, it is a case of diminishing returns.

Whether you “should” spend more for the P10 is entirely up to you. If you buy one and determine it is not worth it to you, PS Audio will nicely take it back.


#9

It’s difficult to make a decision based on specs alone. It’s one of the reasons people struggle with understanding the difference between the BHK 250 and 300. On specs alone there’s not much difference. On sonics a lot. I don’t know what to do about that as a person in charge of helping people understand differences and make choices. I am always open to suggestions.

The sound of Power Plants depends greatly on output impedance and power supply. The lower the impedance, the bigger the supply, the better the sound. And not just by a little. Openness, impact, slam, image and soundstage width and depth increases are all benefits to be enjoyed between the 5 and 10. We’re even working on a 20 for the very same reason - and it won’t have a great deal more power - but stand back Hanna on sound quality.

One thing to understand is that impedance is measured as a function of regulation. The wires in your home’s wall have resistance. The distance between the receptacle and the transformer mounted atop the power pole outside your home, coupled with the number of neighbors sharing that same connection, makes for a messy modulated AC. A Power Plant fixes that. Cleans up the abused sine wave and most important, provides regulated power. The bigger the PP’s internal supply (energy storage and delivery) the greater degree of regulation possible. So when your power amp wants to deliver a big drumbeat, the power to it never fluctuates when connected to a Power Plant - as it would (dynamically) straight into the wall.

It’s worth the time and hassle to try it.


#10
Paul McGowan said It's difficult to make a decision based on specs alone. It's one of the reasons people struggle with understanding the difference between the BHK 250 and 300. On specs alone there's not much difference. On sonics a lot. I don't know what to do about that as a person in charge of helping people understand differences and make choices. I am always open to suggestions.

The sound of Power Plants depends greatly on output impedance and power supply. The lower the impedance, the bigger the supply, the better the sound. And not just by a little. Openness, impact, slam, image and soundstage width and depth increases are all benefits to be enjoyed between the 5 and 10. We’re even working on a 20 for the very same reason - and it won’t have a great deal more power - but stand back Hanna on sound quality.

One thing to understand is that impedance is measured as a function of regulation. The wires in your home’s wall have resistance. The distance between the receptacle and the transformer mounted atop the power pole outside your home, coupled with the number of neighbors sharing that same connection, makes for a messy modulated AC. A Power Plant fixes that. Cleans up the abused sine wave and most important, provides regulated power. The bigger the PP’s internal supply (energy storage and delivery) the greater degree of regulation possible. So when your power amp wants to deliver a big drumbeat, the power to it never fluctuates when connected to a Power Plant - as it would (dynamically) straight into the wall.

It’s worth the time and hassle to try it.


Thanks, Paul for that explanation. Referencing your comments on energy storage, I don’t see any large filter caps in either the P5 or P10 as would appear in a traditional amplifier capable of 1 KW of output. So how do these units manage storage?

#11

Big filter caps. They’re board mounted and probably hard to see.


#12
Paul McGowan said Big filter caps. They're board mounted and probably hard to see.
How many mfd in P5 and P10?

and unrelated question - can the display on these units be turned off?


#13

The display can be turned off, including by the remote. I use this function as I do not like lights. One caveat, the blue/on off button dims but does not go completely out if this is an issue for you. I suspect the designers decided there needed to be some indication the unit was on.

(Paul, thank you for amplifying my response.)


#14

The display can definitely be turned off. That is how mine is at the moment.

I went from a Power Plant Premier to a P5 to a P10. I certainly didn’t need the P10 for the “load.” But I trusted those who were telling me that the P10 sounded better.

The Premier to the P5 was a big jump in sound quality. In comparison the former had a signature that the latter did not, and the latter was more transparent and dynamic. There was a jump between the P5 and P10 of a subtler nature. . . more refinement to the sound is perhaps the best way to describe it, more precise tonal detail, more ambient information, a bit more dynamic, a sense of ease that headroom gives. The P10 unquestionably sounds better and I wouldn’t want to go back to a P5 if I didn’t have to.


#15
lonson said I went from a Power Plant Premier to a P5 to a P10. I certainly didn't need the P10 for the "load." But I trusted those who were telling me that the P10 sounded better. . . .
Thanks for the description. That's the kinda thing I was looking for. Regarding the display, how do you turn it off while you're listening? The Manual only states that there are 3 intensity levels but nowhere did I see mention about turning it off.

#16

The remote has a button labeled “Display.”


#17
Elk said The remote has a button labeled "Display."
Can I turn the display "off" on my P3? The Display button on my remote doesn't do anything...thanks.

#18

I do not know. I have never had a P3.


#19
miniguy said

Thanks for the description. That’s the kinda thing I was looking for. Regarding the display, how do you turn it off while you’re listening? The Manual only states that there are 3 intensity levels but nowhere did I see mention about turning it off.


I don’t remember what remote came with the P10 or if I still have it. . . I always use the DSD remote as it has a section at the bottom for Power Plants that controls several basic functions on the P5 and P10. “DISP” button turns the display on and off.

#20

For my P5 and P10, I turn all zones to always on. Then, I press the front power button to turn off the display and power button light. When I want to see power usage or performance, I press the power button to use the display again and turn off when done.