I have everything plugged into it and simply find our music to be more
dynamic and alive. Greater separation and resolution…and all with no hint of harshness or whatever. No glare
or grit. But, more visceral and, well... more overall engagingly so….Bass seems to go lower with a wonderful
sense of tightness… or rightness, especially as evident from the subs in the Vandersteens. Slam and punch,
texture and presence. Palpable as all get out, and, as I said, texture… oh man… where there is, there is...
texture. Simply put, we love the P20 and cannot recommend it highly enough. It not only gets you clean AC,
it gets you stable AC at the voltage you want. I know there is more to go into here, that we are really only
scratching the surface with the P20's options, but then I am at that point where I would rather listen to
music then play with gear. Plug and Play.
The P20 and P15 series products connect live and reproduced sound in a
that cannot be achieved any other way if dirty power is a culprit, and dirty power is almost always a
If you are planning to build a great system, addressing the very element that brings these inanimate boxes
life, these products should be a priority. Your music will thank you.
I loved the P10, but the P20 offered all of that and a lower noise
floor with even better transient response on dense classical music passages (massed strings), percussion
notes occupying the space between the lowest octaves and improved vocal inflection, never mind an even more
effortless sense of breathing to amps and preamps. Throw in twice the number of output devices and double
the power-supply storage of the P10 and upgrading became a no-brainer.
I'm no stranger to PS Audio's line of Power Plant AC regenerators.
About 20 years ago they introduced their first Power Plant, the P300, and I was one of the first to purchase
a unit…. when I connected my front-end gear into it I just about had a heart attack. Here was the sound I
was searching for! Would it be necessary to provide specifics on how my system sounded better with my system
connected to the P20 versus how it sounded when not connected? I'd end up reciting a litany of audiophile
approved characteristics, all positive, such as an increased frequency response in both the highs and lows,
a more transparent midrange, greater attack, longer decay times, a larger, deeper, more detailed and more
properly drawn to scale soundstage when appropriate, a sense of increased dynamics, both of the micro- and
macro- types, and especially a blacker background. I think that last characteristic is one that I noticed
most often when evaluating the P20, that the background of my system was completely silent. I had a tough
time realizing whether my linestage's mute button was activated or not. Those with any type of experience
using a high-end system will know that a black background can lead to all sorts of other positive
characteristics, especially a system's inner resolution, dynamic and transient performance, and a perceived
increase in the extension of its highest frequencies. The new PS Audio DirectStream Power Plant 20 AC
Regenerator takes what was good with those older Power Plants, and the engineers and designers seem to have
been able to boost the performance of what seemed like simple devices (they're not) and make them even
Enjoy the Music
How does the DirectStream Power Plant 20 compare, sonically, to the
P10 Power Plant?... I did do some comparative listening. The P20 sounded noticeably better, in all the same
ways: naturalness, detail, image precision, soundstage depth and width. I've come to consider my
P10 Power Plant an essential reviewing tool, less because of the improvement it makes in the sound—although
that is, of course, important—than because it levels the playing field for the equipment I review, ensuring
the same, high-quality power for all the components I compare. There's much to be said for those magical
late-night listening sessions when everything sounds magical, in part because the AC supply is quiet.
Assuming it's powerful enough and doesn't limit current, a well-designed AC regenerator can provide the same
quality of sound all the time.
I'm gonna violate the prime directive and tell you to get one. You
won't be able to un-hear it, and you won't be able to live without it. So be ready to pull the trigger when
you take the test drive. Consider yourself warned. It's that good.
Tone, and timbre of instruments are spot-on, with wood-bodied ones in
particular in possession of the proper scale, weight, and resonance that I associate with real acoustic
guitars. Organ, and piano notes are mellifluous, and the slide guitar, and horn arrangements have a
burnished, brassy flavor. Opting in to the P20, the already big, hip-shaking bottom end seems to swell in
size, and weight, with a deeper tonal shading now coming through. Vocals take on a sweeping, more expansive
quality to the air volume surrounding the physical arrangement of singers, and a more chesty composition to
the character of the oral discourse. This was a scenario that continued to play out every time I listened to
a track off Tidal, closed the lid on a CD, or dropped the needle on an LP: everything that was pulling me
deeper into the listening experience, into the meaning of the artists intent through the recorded medium -
be it digital or analog - was enhanced through the P20. If the P10 was helping sink me into the depths of the
song, the P20 was like throwing an anchor, and chain around my legs as I sank down. It seems that with this
latest (and largest) edition to the company's regenerator line (a new DirectStream Power Plant 15, and 12
have been unveiled since I received the P20), PS Audio has taken everything I've come to expect, and
appreciate from the P10, and improved upon it wholesale.
Part Time Audiophile
Were it not for PS Audio's regenerators, I'd be out of business