Twenty years since Russ Andrews first introduced the distinctive PowerBlock eight-way mains extension, the product has undergone significant upgrades and is now being relaunched as the Signature PowerBlock. The new version features a suite of improvements that provide the pinnacle of power extensions for audiophiles.
With its instantly recognisable triangular form factor and ‘upside down’ mains sockets, the original PowerBlock has been a firm favourite with people who want to provide very good quality mains connectivity for their audio and cinema systems. The Signature version brings an even better performance, thanks to the upgrades to virtually every aspect of the design, from the internal wiring to the sockets.
Starting on the exterior of the custom made UL94-V0 ABS casing, which is high impact and fire resistant, the noticeable feature is the familiar ‘upside down’ double sockets. These are the new Russ Andrews Signature Sockets, with high-pressure, rhodium plated, phosphor bronze copper alloy contact surfaces. This provides the best possible contact between the socket and mains plug. Each socket has been manufactured to BS1363 and benefits from the Russ Andrews Process Q™ treatment.
Externally, the Signature PowerBlock also features an earth socket, for use with a dedicated grounding system, such as the Russ Andrews RF Router™ or SuperRouter™, and a high current 16A mains output for daisy chaining another block or for connecting an item of audio equipment. This socket can be conveniently used to connect mains filtration products, including the Russ Andrews PowerPurifier™.
On the inside the changes are equally significant. A new power distribution circuit board has been custom designed, which provides an even supply of power to all sockets. Each socket is wired using Kimber Kable’s high capacity TCX cable, with twin runs of wire per socket to halve the impedance. Higher performance earth wire is used throughout and a total of 6m of cable is utilised inside each Signature PowerBlock.
A MegaClamp™ spike and surge protection filter is fitted as standard and the block is connected to the mains using a high current 16A IEC input from the user’s choice of Russ Andrews mains cables, such as the new Evolution-300 and -500 PowerKords.
All elements are treated with exactly the same full Process Q treatment that can applied to all Russ Andrews and Kimber cables. This is a highly advanced treatment which significantly elevates the performance of every element.
Russ Andrews, chairman of the company, says “My research into the importance of mains purity over the past 30 years has shown that the quality of the extension block is crucial to the overall performance of the system. It is often one of the areas overlooked in audio system design, but it is hugely important.” He continues “With the new Signature PowerBlock, we have been able to bring together many elements of our ground-breaking research into one place, the sum of which is a product that will help audiophiles overcome one of the common weak links and realise far better audio performance.”
The Signature PowerBlocks is covered by the Russ Andrews 60 Day Money Back Guarantee, allowing customers to try it in their own system for two months. It is also subject to a 25 year warranty against manufacturing defects.