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How to upgrade your PSU

Thursday, 9th July 2020

It’s not at all uncommon nowadays to have one or more audio components which, rather than having the power supply built into the main body of the component, are supplied with a separate, often ‘wall-wart’ type external power supply...

Wall wart PSUMore often than not, the reason for this is to keep the manufacturing process simpler and also to save on costs (such power supplies are readily available ‘off the shelf’ for very little money). This allows the manufacturer to focus all their energy on the design of the component itself; trouble is, these supplies can often create a lot of mains noise and interference which has a direct, negative effect on the sensitive components inside the audio unit itself. So, what to do?

Upgrading the power supply unit (PSU) is one of the simplest and most fundamental improvements you can make. It’s something that a few manufacturers recognised a long time ago, with respected brands such as Naim and Cyrus having offered upgraded PSUs for many years – think Hi- Caps and Flat-Caps with the former and PSX with the latter.

We produce a number of superior power supplies for an ever-expanding list of components. These offer vastly improved performance over the cheap and electrically noisy units often supplied as standard and are a straight swap – you just need to check whether we’ve made a supply for your particular component before. If we have, it will be listed at russandrews.com/choosepsu (or phone us). If your model isn’t listed, don’t despair; just contact us and the chances are we’ll be able to make a power supply to suit. We’ll show you how to confirm the specifications next…

How to choose your upgraded PSU.

The first step is to get hold of the original power supply and take a look at the label, as this lists most of the information you will need in order to assess whether a replacement is available.

PSU label
1. AC or DC – the following symbols indicate whether the supply is an AC or DC model:

2. The output voltage. This will be shown on both AC and DC power supplies and is the voltage to supply the component.
3. As well as the voltage you also need to note the current. This is most often shown in milliamps (as in the illustration here) but sometimes as amps (in this example, this would be shown as 0.1A as this is equal to 100mA). Shown on both AC and DC supplies
4. DC supplies only – the small, cylindrical plug at the end of the power supply cable will be wired with either ‘centre positive’ or ‘centre negative’ polarity. This means that the centre of the pin carries either the positive or negative pole and must be wired correctly to avoid damage. 

Centre positive and negative symbols

Using this information, you can see that the PSU label shown here is for a 12V DC supply, 100mA, wired centre negative.

AC/DC jack
In addition to this information, we will also need to know the size of the connector plug on your existing supply. There is no standard formula for plug sizes. For example, a 12V supply does not come with one specific diameter plug and a 24V with another. This means you will need to measure the inside diameter of the plug. [WARNING: unplug the power supply from the mains before making any attempt at measurements.] This is a critical measurement and tolerances are extremely fine. For example, the two most popular sizes 2.1mm and 2.5mm differ by just 0.4mm. A Vernier caliper is best for measurement or to guarantee the right size, send your existing psu to us.

And that’s it: armed with all this information, the easiest thing to do is phone us on 01539 797300 and we’ll be happy to confirm all the details and ensure you get the right option for your component.

The Options.

1. DC Power Supplies.

PowerPak 2We have two options for replacement DC power supplies; PowerPak II and The Supplier DC.

PowerPak II - a 12V model and can be used on any piece of equipment that requires a 12V DC power supply no greater than 2 Amps (24 Watts) and wired with a centre positive 2.1mm plug.

The Supplier DC – our very best DC power supply - is available in variants from 5V/12A to 24V/2.5A suitable for a wide range of DC powered components. The Supplier DC features our superbsounding Russ Andrews Switch Mode Power Supply which incorporates Kimber Kap and Panasonic audio grade capacitors and also uses Kimber Kable internal wiring to link the input and output sockets to the power supply. For good measure, our Silencer mains filter is fitted as standard.

2. AC power supplies.

There is one, high-specification option for components requiring an AC supply:

The Supplier AC -  features a precision rack-wound transformer which gives better tolerances and superior stray magnetic field rejection than some high-speed wound types. Regulation is also far superior to off-the-shelf designs – for example, manufacturing time is estimated at four times that of a high-speed wound transformer to ensure precise accuracy.
The Supplier
As well as accommodating an extremely high quality transformer, The Supplier AC also includes Silencer mains filtration on the input. All internal wiring is Kimber. A cool, yellow LED shows unit operation. Available in three variants: 12V/1A, 16V/1A or 24V/1A.

N.B. All our upgraded power supplies require an additional mains lead - we recommend our YellO Power or better.

Other related articles

What is a Power Supply? - Russ explains exactly what a power supply and what is does


Written By


reviewed by Ron Chaudron
05 Mar 2024
To the Technical team I have an early Michell Gyrodec turntable with the 24vAC motor is your AC power supply compatible I need to have certainty that it will work as I bought another after market 24VAC supply that does not work much to my dissapointment also the existing Wallwart supply output flex has the early type 3 pin right angle Bulgin male plug SA 2403 the current type are not compatible the plug body is larger than the early types I do not know if you can source these still

Best Regards
Ron Chaudron
Customer Service Reply Dear Ron
Sorry but our AC24 Supplier PSu isn't compatible with that deck.

reviewed by Kevin Thompson
24 Jan 2024
Hello, do you have an upgrade for a Cambridge Dacmagic 200M? Thanks.
Customer Service Reply Hi Kevin,

This is not a model we have upgraded yet but that’s not a problem: we offer a bespoke upgrade service at no extra cost, so we’d assess you Dacmagic and give you options and prices depending on what upgrades would be worthwhile. That said, I’d probably look at upgrading the PSU first because this is the weakest point of the Dacmagic. This also has the advantage of being a straightforward plug-in solution so you can use the 60-Day home trial period to judge whether the improvements are cost-effective in your system. Follow this link for the Dacmagic DC Supplier upgraded PSU: https://www.russandrews.com/the-supplier-dc-12v-25mm-c/ If you would like to discuss this, or any other option, feel free to ring us on 01539 797300 and we’ll be happy to help and advise you. Simon

reviewed by youngkyu
16 Aug 2023
"Tt Psu Inquiry"
A while ago, I read a post asking if someone else could use the old gyro deck ac motor method. Have you reviewed it?
I am also an orbe model of the same manufacturer, but I would like to purchase it if I can use it.
This is a 24vac 22uf 50Hz 4 wire motor.
The belt mounts outside the 12-inch platter and is significantly heavier than the Rega.
Customer Service Reply Hi,
Thanks for your inquiry but unfortunately we are not able to supply a PSU for this particular model.

reviewed by mehmet kurtbas
05 Apr 2023
hi there i have an early gyrodec with the ac motor its been in storage for the past 30 years just npt able to find the power supply do have available thanks in advance
Customer Service Reply Our apologies for the delay in replying. We produce a 24v AC version of our top of the range Supplier PSU which should work with the older Gyrodec as that's what it requires. But I'm not sure of the connection type. If you can email us directly (info@russandrews.com) with more info and some pictures that would be great!

10 Dec 2021
"A&H Zed R16 Psu Upgrade"
Hi Russ,
Hope all is weel.

I have Allen&Heath ZED R16 mixing board. The board is in good condition and everything is working OK..
My idea is to do some mods and upgrades and get more out of console.
PSU is the first thing I'd like to upgrade. I spoke wit guys from A&H and they confirmed that with some modifications it will be possible to use external PSU
Do you think that your PSU will improve overall performance of the board?

This is the ZED r16 stock PSU


Customer Service Reply Hi,

Thanks for the enquiry. Our PSUs would not be suitable for this application I'm afraid but there is the option that we could upgrade the Allen&Heath power pcb with audio-grade capacitors and better mains filtration. This is the type of upgrade we regularly carry out on Hi-Fi components with great success. We would need you to send us the power pcb and then we would assess what can be done and give you a cost (there would be no charge for this service). If you are happy to go ahead, we can do the work and get it back to you ASAP, if you decide against, that's fine; we would just charge for return courier. If you would like to discuss this please don't hesitate to give me a ring on 01539 797300 or email simondalton@russandrews.com Best regards, Simon

reviewed by Boris
14 Oct 2021
"Txt Correction"
"Using this information, you can see that the PSU label shown here is for a 12V DC supply, 1A, wired centre positive.".......correction:100mA=0.1A, on the picture, wired centre is negative.
Kind Regards
Customer Service Reply Many thanks for pointing this out - we changed the picture but not the text! Have now corrected the text accordingly.

reviewed by Chris Hunt
23 Mar 2021
Hi there.
Will the Powerpak 2 work with my Chord 2qute?
Would I need an adapter?
Customer Service Reply Hi, yes the PowerPak II is compatible with your 2cute, no adapter is necessary you just need to choose the 2.1mm option.

reviewed by Amer Saad
22 Jan 2021
"Naim Stageline"
Hi, do you do a power supply for the Naim Stageline? Right now it's being powered via the Naim 282 preamp. Thanks. Best wishes Amer
Customer Service Reply Hi Amer, thank you for your enquiry. This largely depends on the particular model of your Stageline - contact us on 01539 797300 and we will be able to confirm this for you.

reviewed by Alan White
18 Jul 2020
"Brennan B2"

Do you offer a suitable PSU for the BRENNAN B2 which currently uses a bog standard Lap Top PSU rated 24V DC at 2 AMPS thanks.

Alan White
Customer Service Reply Hi Alan

Thank you for your enquiry about our power supplies.

Yes we can build a psu for the Brennan. However due to its power requirement, it would need to by our Supplier DC model |Click Here//Achooseyoursupplier| for more information.

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