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Power conditioner volts worry !

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Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby Matthew Seed » Sun Jun 07, 2020 12:54 am

Hi guys. I just bought a Furman PL Plus CE for my new guitar rack set up.

The moment I plugged it in at home the LED’s on the front that show the incoming volts is above 240V. 240V is marked as the last green LED, mine then has the next two amber LED’s and the first red one flashing.

Nothing in the Manuel tells me what I should do and if this is a bad thing etc.

Do I assume that of that is what’s coming in, the unit will regulate down to 240V what’s going out ?

Does anyone know much about these things, just a bit worried to plug kit into something running at a too high voltage.

Thanks
Matthew.
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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby resistorman » Sun Jun 07, 2020 1:26 am

What does the manual have to say about it? If you have a meter, read what's coming in and out. Look at the manufacturer's FAQ and forum and contact them directly if you still have questions. And what about support from where you bought it?
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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby innerchord » Sun Jun 07, 2020 4:25 am

It's telling you that your incoming AC voltage is marginally high. That device is not a voltage regulator; it will deliver the voltage it receives.
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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby ef37a » Sun Jun 07, 2020 5:46 am

The unit has extreme voltage shut down at 275V and since you seem to be getting well above 240V it is possible that you will experience random power loss? Why did you buy the Furmam Matt? Was mains borne noise an issue? If not I would personally get a refund!

There is the possibility that your mains supply is over tolerance or close to it at times, if you can, find some way to monitor the voltage SAFELY! If it goes over 253V get onto your supplier.

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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby ef37a » Sun Jun 07, 2020 9:54 am

https://www.ebay.co.uk/p/523271186?iid= ... joEALw_wcB

^ Looks to be a safe way to check mains voltage but I have not personally used one ( I tend to be a bit naughty but then I have been 'at it' a long time!)

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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby Mike Stranks » Sun Jun 07, 2020 10:04 am


^ Looks to be a safe way to check mains voltage but I have not personally used one ( I tend to be a bit naughty but then I have been 'at it' a long time!)

Dave.

Yup! These are very useful - and revealing - devices as they show you all sorts of things about the supply.

But it can be like reading a medical dictionary - causes all sorts of totally unnecessary alarms!

As you've already said Dave, unless the O/P has been experiencing problems with the mains supply then a conditioner is almost always totally superfluous in the UK

Definite problems excluded, then your advice to send it back for a refund seems well-founded! :)
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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby Matthew Seed » Sun Jun 07, 2020 10:29 am

Hi guys, thanks for the help.

I have fully read the Manuel and looked online etc and can not find the answer about this specific thing. If it goes too high it shuts off, that’s all the Manuel says.....it doesn’t say what to do if it’s a bit high. I have emailed Furman twice now and no reply, might be a lock down thing I guess.

Dave, the reason I’ve bought one is two fold. One is the convenience of all my rig going to one switch right there on my rack. But the main reason is that where I live I am near some MOD ariels and I get terrible trouble with RFI. On top of that I live in a very very old thatch cottage and the mains around the house isn’t the best.

I haven’t dare plug in my kit yet, will it do any harm to kit if the voltage is over a bit.

Matt
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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby Mike Stranks » Sun Jun 07, 2020 10:40 am

Matthew Seed wrote:Hi guys, thanks for the help.

I haven’t dare plug in my kit yet, will it do any harm to kit if the voltage is over a bit.

Matt

In my previous house we were right next to a substation.... My meter-gadget (similar to the one Dave's referenced) regularly showed that the voltage was above 'normal', but still within acceptable limits.

From a reputable industry site I'm reading that: "In the UK, the declared voltage and tolerance for an electricity supply is 230 volts -6%, +10%. This gives an allowed voltage range of 216.2 volts to 253.0 volts."

So I think you're fine... If still anxious buy a meter-gadget. If you're out of range - see above - then contact your supplier.
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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby ef37a » Sun Jun 07, 2020 11:01 am

Matt, you need have no worries about plugging all your kit to the Furman, it is simply showing you your mains is at top voltage, always was! In fact you are a tad 'safer' using the conditioner because of the overvolts trip although I think it is unlikely to cut in at all often.

The fact that you have RFI issues and a rather 'dirty' mains supply means it is probably reasonable to keep the unit although there are far cheaper ways to organize your mains feeds!

My major fear (were I running a 'stoodio') would be that the Furman would decide to trip out and lose a day's work? If you record to a laptop you don't need to worry but if a desktop I would run that and its screen from a separate mains feed. Computer power supplies are VERY mature technology and can cope with very dodgy mains suppiies.

Of course the very best solution (for PC etc) is a modest, 1kVA UPS but, more expenditure!

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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby Matthew Seed » Sun Jun 07, 2020 11:12 am

Thanks Dave, good advice indeed. Good to know I’m ok plugging in. It’s ok on the cut out front because this is just for my guitar rig at the moment, that said I may buy another for my recording kit too, however I use UAD Luna as my recording DAW and that’s constantly backed up so I’m sure I’d be ok.

Thanks for the advice.

Matthew
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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby ef37a » Sun Jun 07, 2020 11:22 am

Matthew Seed wrote:Thanks Dave, good advice indeed. Good to know I’m ok plugging in. It’s ok on the cut out front because this is just for my guitar rig at the moment, that said I may buy another for my recording kit too, however I use UAD Luna as my recording DAW and that’s constantly backed up so I’m sure I’d be ok.

Thanks for the advice.

Matthew

I would suggest you look at UPS units instead of another conditioner? I have not had any experience with them for some years but I would think the better brands already have very good filters and spike suppression built in and of course you get a 20 minute of so shut down time in the even of mains failure.

For mains power distribution look at the strips used by the 'pro' network industry, much better quality than your 'B&Q' offerings.

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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby Matthew Seed » Sun Jun 07, 2020 12:29 pm

Cheers Dave, I will look into that. Much appreciated.

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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby James Perrett » Sun Jun 07, 2020 1:47 pm

If you live in an area with high levels of RF you need to design a filtering system specific to your setup - not use a generic filter that in some circumstances could make things worse. These Furman units are designed to solve a problem that we don't normally have in the UK. The situation in the US, where these things are designed, is very different.
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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby ef37a » Sun Jun 07, 2020 2:26 pm

James Perrett wrote:If you live in an area with high levels of RF you need to design a filtering system specific to your setup - not use a generic filter that in some circumstances could make things worse. These Furman units are designed to solve a problem that we don't normally have in the UK. The situation in the US, where these things are designed, is very different.

Indeed James, whilst RFI can come in via the mains supply it is not its usual route. That is almost always the front end, mic/guitar/line inputs. On rare occasions speaker cables can be responsible but mains not commonly. Virtually all mains kit has a 100nF X/Y cap across the live and neutral and that stops most of the muck.

If you check my 10/20 you will see I grew up only few clicks from two very powerful transmitters. Caused no end of bother once someone invented the Silicon planar transistor!

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Re: Power conditioner volts worry !

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Sun Jun 07, 2020 4:39 pm

I loathe these Furman things. They create a false sense of security -- or panic in this case -- and provide facilities that really aren't necessary at high cost!

A professional-grade 12 or 15 outlet MDU (mains distribution unit) would cost half as much as the Furman. Of course, it wouldn't have fancy pull out lights or a pointless LED display...

I presume the guitar rig has been used at the premises before the Furman arrived without catastrophe? So why would it now be any different just because the mains comes via the Furman rather than a plugboard?

And no, the Furman doesn't regulate the voltage, it just powers off if the voltage gets insanely high. It's worth noting, though, that while the UK mains voltage is nominally 230, an awful lot of local substations will still be set to provide a nominal 240 and the maximm allowable voltage is 253V as has been said. So don't be surprised if the LED meter stays on the high side for most venues.

As for RFi problems, it's actually quite unlikely it's getting in via the mains, and even more unlikely that the Furman could prevent it, anyway. If you're having problems the amplifiers (and/or effects pedals etc) need to be analysed and modified to prevent their picking up spurious RF. Such mods are usually fairly simple and shouldn't affect the sound of the gear. It's a common side-effect of running unbalanced high-impedance audio interfaces....

Finally, if you're aware that the house wiring is dodgy, I'd get it assessed and updated as a matter of urgency... Especially in a thatched building. It might even cure your RFi problems by improving the wall socket earth impedances!
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