Welcome to The Truth Hz, a recurring feature where we irreverently examine some of the absurdities of the audio and AV industry. To kick things off, this week let's have a look at ultra-high-end power cords. Unless you pay specific attention to the goings-on in the high-end audiophile world, you may not be aware that there is such a thing as an aftermarket power cord that costs as much as a new car. But it's true, and, what's more, there are numerous examples of such power cords.
Now, the purpose of this article is not actually to discuss the efficacy of these rarefied AC power cables. Rather, it is to examine what you could purchase Instead of a power cord if your budget is let's say $27,000, which is the cost of a 2.5 meter Triple Crown Power Cord by Siltech Cables. Or perhaps you fancy the Professional Series Double Helix Signature Power Cord by High Fidelity Cables, which are easy to spot that high-end audio shows: 3 meters for $31,470!
But wait, that's still the minor leagues. If you go for Nordost Odin Gold, which is priced at $34,999.99 for 1.25 meters and $9500 per additional 1.25 meters, you're looking at $44,499.00 for a 2.5-meter power cord. So let's work with that!
Before we look at AV gear you can buy for $44,500, let's get this over with: The base price of a Tesla Model 3 is $43,990. See? You even have 500 bucks to spare, which you could use to buy a PlayStation 5 (if you can find one) or some nice Audeze LCD-1 headphones (with money to spare for some drive-thru indulgence in the Tesla).
If you put $45,000 into a new AV system for your living room, there are some interesting options with a $45,500 budget. For example, you can now afford an LG SIGNATURE Sculpture ZXPUA 88" 8K OLED. With $15,500 left to put together a decent audio system, for example, you could get a Denon AVR-X8500HA 13.2ch 8K AV Receiver, which costs $4500 so now we've got $11,000 left for speakers and a subwoofer.
For a premium but minimalist 5.1 speaker system that looks good in the living room, Bowers & Wilkins 700 Series could do the trick: A pair of 702 S2 floor standing speakers for $5000, the HTM71 S2 center channel speaker for $1500, and a pair of 706 S2 bookshelf speakers to use as surrounds ($2000). Yup, there's still $2500 left for a sub, and an SVS SB16-Ultra 16" sealed sub for $2300 fits the bill. It's a nice 5.1 rig you can build on with the money you saved!
Or, perhaps you decide that you want to put that beautiful 8K LG inside a dedicated room. It's OK to call it a home theater when it's an 88-inch 8K LG! But now, our goal is to fully utilize the multichannel processing power of the AVR-X8500H for 3D immersive sound including Dolby Atmos and DTS:X. And for that, we'll use an all-SVS speaker system. As before, we've got $11,000 to spend.
The front L/R speakers, of course, need to be the Prime Pinnacle 3-way tower. That's $1800 for a pair. Adding the 3-way Prime Center puts $400 more on the tab, so there's still $8800 for the rest.
Ear-level side and rear surrounds are Prime Bookshelf, $300 each so that's $1200 total. Now we need four heights and the Prime Elevation is the speaker for that, they cost $250 each, adding up to $1000 for full-on 7.1.4 DTS:X and Atmos sound. And now we've still got $6600 for subwoofers, and that means grabbing dual PB-16 Ultra subs for $5600 (you save $200 by buying a pair). Wow, you've still got $1000 left, so you may as well buy both a PlayStation 5 and an Xbox Series X for this amazing system.
I know, it's probably a very difficult thing to decide between these three options, so here's a handy rule of thumb: Do you own a private submarine? Have you reserved your ticket to the edge of space? Then the ultimate power cord might be for you. For everyone else, it's a question of Tesla vs. 8K dream system.
See you next week.
Hell, I'd probably buy an LG OLED83C1PUA and still have $40,000 for the sound system! Hell, if I rejigger my A/V furniture, I can probably fit one of those big boy LG OLED's in my current system. And still have enough left over for a Tesla!