Synergistic Research Galileo UEF AC Power Cables Part 2

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Giradi2.jpgMy first experience with a Synergistic Research products was the ground breaking A/C Master Coupler back in 1995. At the time, I started with a solid state based system consisting of Adcom separates (amplifier, preamp, and cd player), Snell E-III loudspeakers, and Monster Cables to an upgraded tube based system consisting of Golden Tube Audio SE separates, California Audio Labs CL-15, B & W P5 loudspeakers, M & K subwoofer, and mid line Audioquest cables. 

In the process of trading and upgrading tweaks and cables with fellow audiophiles, a friend recommended that I try the SR A/C Master Couplers. At the time, SR was the only cable company marketing upgraded power cords. Although I had my doubts that a power cable could have an impact on my system, I had my local dealer supply me with three SR A/C Master Couplers. I installed them on my source, tube preamp, and tube amplifier. With the SR A/C Master Couplers installed and my system transformed by the lower noise floor and enhanced dynamics, I later became interested in replacing of my existing speaker and interconnect cables with SR cables. Since then, like most of us die-hard audio geeks, I’ve taken the cable merry go round ride a few times until I finally stopped on the SR ride that has taken me well beyond cables. 

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Some three years ago, I reviewed the SR UEF PowerCell 10 line conditioner and SR Element CTS Digital AC power cables  (here). At that time the SR UEF PowerCell 10 line conditioner and SR Element CTS Digital AC power cables outshined my reference cables. This review builds upon the results achieved by the former models (SR Element CTS and Atmosphere UEF Level 3 series AC power cables) in what is known as the top of the line Galileo UEF Series AC Power Cables.

The Galileo UEF AC power cables are the first power cords manufactured by SR that incorporates an internal Active EM Cell as implemented in the SR PowerCell line conditioners. Each Galileo UEF Power Cable contains a Swiss made power supply designed to drive the cable’s Active Shielding as well as bias the micro EM Cells encased in carbon fiber which act to function as a discreet power conditioner providing electrical isolation between connected components in one’s system. Both digital and analog variants are offered.

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Galileo UEF Active Power Cords feature 10 Active Shielded geometries running in parallel each powered by an on board Swiss made power supply. High current conductors are accompanied by Pure Silver Monocrystal Filaments in air dielectrics and pass through a UEF Filter comprised of precious metals and Graphene for no loss of current ac filtration.  Active Shielding is voiced with a single UEF Tuning Circuit for Galileo UEF Analogue, and twin UEF Active Tuning Circuits for Galileo UEF Digital for up to 3 separate tuning options to ensure a user selected system integration. This all translates into a thick and semi-stiff AC powercord that looks like it escaped from the South American rainforest where you’ll find large serpentine snakes.

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An SR product wouldn’t be complete if there wasn’t something one could tweak. There is l Black bullet that is the “Galileo UEF Active Shielding Circuit” which is required to activate the active shielding. The Gold and Silver are “Galileo UEF Tuning Modules” which are optional and can be used to tune the system to your taste. From the SR website, “UEF Galileo Tuning Modules voiced expressly for Galileo connect to the shields of Galileo UEF power cables to contour sound by changing electrical vibration. By altering the relationship between signal and ground vibrations you take control of the sonic balance of your cable and in the process, the sound of your system. Silver UEF Tuning Modules are fast oscillators that tune for clarity, refined detail, and pinpoint image focus. Gold UEF Tuning Modules have a slower response for a sound that is warmer with a pronounced increase in sound staging and a warm sense of envelopment that in some systems translates into greater musicality. When combining both Silver and Gold UEF Tuning Modules on different Galileo Power Cords in the same system one create the best traits of both Gold and Silver”. Translated … they make a big difference. After eliminating “all” sources of noise and distortion in my system which will be a subject of a future review, I preferred the Silver Tuning Modules on everything (speaker, interconnect, and power cables).

Galileo UEF AC Power Cord Specifications:

ØStrings:

·       Silver Air Strings- 99.999% pure silver signal conductor, Air (sealed) dielectric

·       Tricon String- 99.999% pure silver signal conductors, Teflon dielectric

·       High Current Galileo String- Silver Matrix conductors, Modified PE dielectric

·       Shielding- Galileo Active Shielding

ØCable Count: 

·       10 separate pair of cables- 4 pair High Current Galileo Silver Matrix Strings, 1 pair Tricon Strings, 1 pair Silver Air Strings, 1 each Tungsten Air String, 1 each Silver Active Shielding balanced DC geometry

·       UEF Filtration: Precious metals / Graphene / Silk and Teflon dielectric

·       Connectors: Synergistic Research G07 Pure Gold Signal Path Wall and IEC 15 amp and 20 amp connectors


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My review will start by baselining my system with Galileo UEF ACpower cables on all components that include the Uptone Audio JS-2 power supply for Qnap NAS drive, Ayon Audio S-5 Network Player/Preamp, Ayon Audio Odin III Gen 4 SET amplifier, and REL R-528SE subwoofer). Then I will swap my previous reference, the Atmosphere UEF Level 3 High Current AC power cord on the Ayon Audio Odin III Gen 4 SET amplifier and report on the results. In both cases, each power cable will be plugged directly into a dedicated 20 amp AC line shared with the SR PowerCell 12 UEF.

Graphene, the Sixth Element

Girardi-AE0318.jpgMy reviewing system includes the Uptone JS-2 Linear Power Supply for Qnap TS-251+ NAS drive, Ayon Audio S-5 Network Player/Preamplifier, Ayon Audio Odin III Gen 4 SET amplifier fitted with Tungsram signal tubes, Acoustic Zen Crescendo MKII loudspeakers, SOtM dBCL-CAT7 Special Edition Ethernet cable/filter block, Revelation Audio Labs Prophecy CryoSilve Reference CAT7+/RJ-45 i2s Ethernet Digital Link Ethernet cable, REL R-528SE subwoofer, SR Galileo UEF speaker cables and interconnects, SR CTS Element REL SPEC Subwoofer Reference cable, SR Atmosphere UEF power cords, SR PowerCell 12 UEF, SR UEF Black outlets, SR HFTs, SR Atmosphere XL, SR FEQ, SR Active SE Grounding Block and HDG cables, SR Black Box, SR MiG 2.0 isolation footers, SR Tranquility Bases UEF, and Bybee iQSE. My AZ Crescendo speakers are 34” from the front wall with the listening position eight feet from the front baffle. My listening area, its 14.5’ wide, has a 9’ ceiling, and has an open back wall to 1500 sq ft of first floor living area.

Having a highly resolving single ended triode amplifier like the Ayon Audio Odin MKIII has been a mixed blessing. I can easily tell if any upstream or system component was not up to the task, I could easily hear if a fuse or cable was not installed properly due to single flow, and if a power supply on an upstream component such as a NAS drive is noisy in operation. My previous experience with power cords can be summarized as follows: It’s so much easier to get a higher end result with less expensive sources and amplifiers with mega buck power cables then with more expensive sources and amplifiers powered by averaged priced power cables. Given my system component level baseline detailed above, I could not wait to get the Galileo UEF power cables installed in my system.

Marley.jpgI’ve been jiving to the album Stir it Up: The Music by Bob Marley (Telarc Records) by Monty Alexander lately since fitting out my system with all SR Galileo UEF cables. Monty Alexander reclaims his Jamaican roots to pay tribute to superstar and fellow islander Bob Marley. Supplementing an American jazz rhythm section with the reggae Gumption Band from Jamaica produces an “inventive integration”. Without vocals, Marley’s music is more open to improvisation, launched by the highlighted changes of “Jammin’” and “Kaya.” Alexander presents “No Woman No Cry” in a “reverential idiom tinged with gospel influences”. The skills of trombonist Steve Turre is showcased on the pop hit, “I Shot the Sheriff.” Alexander effectively fuses jazz and reggae into a cohesive sound on this album. The disc’s single best moment comes on the funky and righteous “Could You Be Loved” where the refined Alexander plays it like he means it. With the SR Galileo UEF AC cables installed on my Ayon Audio Odin, a wealth of inner detail and low level information was revealed. The woodwind instruments were consistently located at a greater height, had a better sense of depth, were more natural, and were rendered with greater resolution as compared to when the Atmosphere UEF Level 3 power cable was installed. The scale of the piano in each recording on this album was presented in all its glory akin to what you would hear at a jazz nightclub. There was also more air and apparent detail on high strings and cymbals. Absent was the white noise contributing to a higher noise floor, flatter soundstage and restriction in dynamics when my previous reference AC power cable were installed. 

alto.jpg“Alto” by Joe Beck and Ali Ryerson has been one of my favorite jazz albums and is one of many DMP recordings I have enjoyed since the development of SACD. Renowned guitarist Joe Beck and premiere jazz flutist Ali Ryerson have teamed up to create a remarkably accessible new sound by pairing alto flute and a unique new guitar approach with spare and compelling arrangements that emphasize beauty and melody. The results of their explorations are showcased on the 14 songs of Alto, the duo’s first recording. I am somewhat partial to great jazz guitar work, and this CD certainly has plenty of it. Joe Beck and Ali Ryerson have demonstrated a remarkable ability to seamlessly integrate the sounds of an electric guitar with those of an alto flute. Steve Davis, producer, rounds out most of all the selections with judicious applications of a variety of percussion that fit so well as to go un-noticed unless you’re really listening for them. Eleventh cut, Song for My Father; the flute as played by Ali Ryerson was more fleshed out and had better focus while the Joe Beck’s guitar was more holographic. The percussion instruments also benefit the depth and presence adding to a believable live performance in my listening room and I felt better connected to the musical performance with the Galileo UEF cables.  Reinstalling the previous reference, the music lost its rich texture, ultralow noise floor, body and substance, musicality, transient accuracy, and neutral tonal balance. The SR Galileo power cords better enabled my system components to remain true to the original harmonic.

Like the SR Galileo UEF speaker and interconnects, the SR Galileo UEF power cords make components sound exceptionally neutral, rich in texture, full of body, powerful, fast, spacious, and detailed while allowing my system components to reach their full potential. The Galileo UEF digital and analog power cables on all system components checked all of the boxes for me.

Conclusion

The design advantage provided by the implementation of the internal Active EM Cell contained with the Galileo UEF power cables was clearly demonstrated in the review. Although the Atmosphere UEF Level 4 cables are excellent cables within their price point, the technology employed in the Galileo UEF cables significantly improved upon the performance of the Atmosphere UEF Level 3 power cables. The many attributes described in my review of the Galileo UEF speaker and interconnects were duplicated by the Galileo UEF power cords. The improvements brought by the addition of the Galileo UEF power cords were in some ways more significant than the improvements brought by the Galileo UEF signal cables and the combination of the two in my system took a major step in the achievement of the absolute sound.  Synergistic Research nailed it on this one.

 

 

 Mike Girardi 

Specifications:

Galileo UEF Power Cable Digital, 5ft, $5,600

Galileo UEF Power Cable Analog, 5ft, $5,600

Website: www.synergisticresearch.com

Phone number: (949) 476-0000

 

 

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