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RE: Class D amps and power chords

End-user reports indicating a shielded power cord is beneficial for class D amplifiers is a typical finding, but the materials and type of shielding should be considered for any power amplifier application. Typical run-of-the-mill dual shielded power cords tend to be over-shielded and involve less than good-sounding shielding which may do more harm than good. A massive braided copper shield is most effective for intensive EMI shielding rather than RF and class D pollution which is better addressed with a foil shield, but not all foil shields are the same. Typical foil shielded power cords involve Mylar-backed aluminum shielding which tends to affect the sonic signature of a component in a negative way, with a level of coloration that steps on the transparency of a power cord. IME, the best sounding foil shielding method is a very thin layer of pure copper foil shielding, which has the least affect on the transparency of a power cord.

Braided shields while providing effective EMI shielding and EMI suppression tends to affect dynamics in a negative manner, often with a sense of squashed dynamics, especially when used with power amplification, which simply doesn't require heavy-handed EMI shielding to perform better. It's an unnecessary filter with sonic penalties, especially for power amplifier applications, IME. In my opinion, a power cord with a braided shield should only be considered for an application such as a phono set-up that is prone to EMI noise issues. Otherwise, a braided shield is good for suppressing EMI radiated from the power cord of a device that functions adjacent to other cables and power cords within an audio system. High frequency noise including class D pollution can be addressed via an unobtrusive thin pure copper foil shield rather than a hardcore dual-shielded power cord that may be more suitable for a hospital or laboratory environment rather than a home audio system.

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