Audiolab DC Block 6 Promises Pure Power
Audiolab's DC Block 6 removes RFI/EMI and 'DC on the mains' to deliver pure, rebalanced power for up to six separate components.
DC Block 6 is the follow-up to Audiolab's sub-US$120 DC Block released last year. However, where that was designed to connect to an individual audio component, the DC Block 6 promises to bring the “remarkable effect on sound quality” of the original to half-a-dozen components at once.
Audiolab's DC Block 6 serves the purpose of a six-way power strip but with the same mains filtering and DC-blocking tech found in the original DC Block. Here, six individually isolated outlets deliver pure, rebalanced power to every component in an audio or AV system and, says Audiolab, unlocks the complete system's true sonic potential.
Housed in a sleek aluminium enclosure and proportioned to sit with standard-width source and amp components, the DC Block 6 sports an OLED voltmeter display showing you the measured mains voltage. But, of course, you can switch this off if it gets too distracting during your listening session.
Around the back are six C13 IEC outlets to feed your audio components, while the single IEC cable connects the DC Block 6 to a mains socket.
The mains supply in a typical home is apparently subject to interference induced by a range of issues, causing the AC waveform to distort before it reaches each component, creating noise in the audio signal and degrading sound.
One common issue is 'DC on the mains'. In theory, our tech should receive pure AC, with a perfectly symmetrical sine wave alternating between positive and negative phases. However, the presence of 'asymmetrical loads' causes the waveform to become offset, resulting in the presence of DC voltage on the AC supply.
Audiolab says that the AC transformers commonly used in home audio equipment cannot tolerate the presence of significant levels of DC voltage without being compromised. We are told that less than 500mV of DC – typical in an average household electricity supply – can be sufficient to cause toroidal transformers like those found in some amplifiers to become saturated, adversely affecting sonic performance and may cause audible mechanical vibration.
By blocking or cancelling the DC voltage within the AC mains supply, the Audiolab DC Block 6 corrects the DC offset and rebalances the mains sine wave. The DC Block 6 also contains a specialised, high-performance filtering circuit that removes RFI/EMI contaminants from the mains supply.
The manufacturer says this reduces differential-mode noise (exacerbated by cheap switch-mode power supplies used by many home appliances) and common-mode noise (aggravated by airborne interference from phones, Wi-Fi networks and Bluetooth).
The result, says Audiolab, is that the noise floor drops, and the sound gains greater focus, with reduced grain, improved clarity, better-defined bass and 'airier' treble.
The Audiolab DC Block 6 all-in-one DC blocker and mains filter for audio and AV systems is available from November at an RRP of £349 (around S$699 locally) in black or silver. Moreover, it comes with a complete set of power cables – six IEC C14 to C13 cables to connect its outlets to your system components, plus a cable to plug it into the mains. International pricing hasn't been announced by the company.
StereoNET’s resident rock star, bass player, and gadget junkie. His passion for gadgets and Hi-Fi is second only to being a touring musician.
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