Product Review (April 2001) - MAX® 1000+ Power Conditioner


Power distribution in today's audio and home theater systems require more power outlets than what is usually available on your walls. In addition, concerns about running clean power to your expensive components take a high priority when you've shelled out thousands of dollars on equipment. Another problem is dealing with large power amplifiers that have huge capacitors in their power supplies. Turning them on usually takes a bite out of the wall power initially, due to the in-rush current. Too many components kicking on at once can cause circuit breakers to trip in the house. Panamax implements a set of delayed power outlets on the MAX® 1000+ to help remedy this problem. Once the MAX® 1000+ turns on, the switched outlets power-up. Approximately 10 seconds later, the delayed outlets power-up. This not only helps relieve the initial power needs from the wall, but also gives the preamps time to settle out before turning on the amplifiers. In some cases, not delaying power to the amplifiers will result in a "thump" on the speakers, which can cause damage.

Features:
The MAX® 1000+ is designed to protect over and under voltage conditions from the incoming wall power. When the line voltage drops below 90V or rises above 134V, the unit will automatically turn off power to your equipment. Once this occurs, the unit will automatically restore power after a brief period of time when the line voltage has returned to a safe operating level. The MAX® 1000+ also protects between Line/Neutral, Neutral/Ground and Line/Ground. Panamax has implemented EMI/RFI Noise Filtration at 50dB (99.7%). This prevents high frequency noise from entering your components. A nice feature on the MAX® 1000+ that was missing from the earlier MAX® 1000 is the ability to dim the LED display. This is a must for many home theater installations since no one wants to see distracting lights when they're watching a movie.

The front panel has four LEDs for "Ground OK", "Line Fault", "Power", and "Over/Under Voltage". There is also a row of LEDs for voltage monitoring. The MAX® 1000+ has eight outlets on the back of the unit. 2 are always powered on. Four are controlled by relays when the unit senses a device such as a preamp or receiver powering up. The remaining 2 outlets are delayed approximately 10 seconds for power amplifiers. The MAX® 1000+ also includes a coax input and output to protect equipment from damaging voltages produced by an antenna or cable. This input is not designed for satellite signals because the clamping voltage is quite low (0.7V).

Panamax is so confident that their product will protect your hardware they are offering a Lifetime $5,000,000 Connected Equipment Warranty. The warranty says they will protect your equipment or will repair or replace it up to $5,000,000. With a guarantee like this, it difficult not to feel good about your equipment being connected to their unit.

Performance:
I've had a Panamax MAX® 1000 installed for the past 5 years with flawless performance. However, recently a problem developed in my old MAX® 1000 that required sending the unit in for repair. Fortunately, Panamax has a number that easily directs you to the service folks. Support has been excellent on this product and I commend Panamax for the good service I received. Basically for a fee of $25, Panamax replaced my old MAX® 1000 with a MAX® 1000+ since the old unit is no longer available. It's been several months now since I replaced my ailing MAX® 1000 with the MAX® 1000+ and fortunately the MAX® 1000+ is everything the old unit was and more. The new brightness control for the LEDs on the front panel of the MAX® 1000+ was a smart addition since most of my movie viewing is in a darkened environment. Good job Panamax!

MAX® 500 DBS:
Although most of my experience with Panamax has been with their MAX® 1000 and MAX® 1000+, they do offer two other units that I had a chance to review. The MAX® 500 is similar to the MAX® 1000+, but lacks the detailed voltage monitoring LEDS and the delayed outlets. Both over-voltage and under-voltage are still featured in this unit with individual LEDs for fault conditions. The advantage of the MAX® 500 is the protection it offers for DirecTV and Dish Network satellite boxes. Since both systems require phone lines for pay-per-view movies and other data retrieval, a protected phone jack is also included. There is also protection for two sets of standard antenna/cable connections on the MAX® 500 DBS.

MAX® 1500 AllPath:
If you are looking for a step up from the MAX® 1000+, Panamax offers the MAX® 1500. This unit features all the benefits of the MAX® 1000+ as well as the satellite protection found in the MAX® 500. There are two additional always-on outlets available on this unit for those with greater needs for clean power. This unit also features an AllPath connection on the rear of the unit. AllPath enables users the ability to expand power protection using compatible modules.

Here is a MAX® SCL/8 AllPath® module before installation.

Here is a MAX® SCL/8 AllPath® module installed on the back of the MAX® 1500.

The MAX® 1500 is about twice the height of the MAX® 1000+ and has a nice brushed aluminum front panel. Whatever your needs are, Panamax appears to have all bases covered.

The Final Word:
Panamax offers a great product with an incredible warranty. Any audio or home theater system that needs several outlets should consider a Panamax MAX® 1000+ unit. My equipment has been connected to the Panamax MAX® 1000 Power Conditioner for years and I've always felt confident about this product. Now that it has been replaced with the MAX® 1000+, I should have many more years of trouble free protection. Product quality along with Panamax's customer service makes them one of the best companies I've had to deal with.
- Kevin Nakano

Review System:
Pioneer Elite PRO-610HD HD-Ready TV
Yamaha DSP-A1 Dolby Digital and DTS Amplifier
Adcom GFA555II 2-Channel Amplifier
Adcom GFA5800 2-Channel Amplifier
Panasonic DVD-RV65
Pioneer Elite CLD-99 Laserdisc Player
Silicon Image DVDO iScan Pro Line Doubler


Review System

Display - Pioneer Elite PRO-610HD 58-inch HD-Ready TV (ISF calibrated)
Preamplifier/Processor - Parasound AVC-2500u THX-Ultra Certified DD/DTS A/V Controller
Amplifier - Parasound HCA-2205AT THX-Ultra Certified Five-Channel Power Amplifier
Set-top Box - RCA DTC100 HDTV/DSS Satellite Receiver
Dish - RCA DSA8900E DirecTV Plus Elliptical dish.
DVD/CD/SACD Player - Sony DVP-S9000ES DVD/CD/SACD Player
Laserdisc Player - Pioneer Elite CLD-99 Laserdisc Player
Turntable - Thorens TD-146 with a Shure V15 Type V-MR cartridge
Front Speakers - Miller & Kreisel S-150THX (L+R) and S-150AC (Center) THX-Ultra Speakers
Rear Speakers - Miller & Kreisel SS-250 Tripole® Surround Speakers
Subwoofer - Two Miller & Kreisel MX-350THX MkII THX-Ultra Push-pull Subwoofers
Room Treatments - Echo Buster panels and Bass Buster towers
Audio Analyzer - Sencore SP295 Audio Analyzer



Review - At a glance
Panamax MAX® 1000+ - Power Conditioner

Front Panel

  • Power LED
  • Ground Fault LED
  • Line Fault LED
  • Over-voltage/Under-voltage LED
  • Voltage Monitoring LEDs

    Back Panel

  • 1 - Coax Connector for cable/antenna
  • 8 - Total Outlets
  • 2 - Always On Outlets
  • 4 - Switched Outlets
  • 2 - Delayed Outlets
  • 10 foot power cord

    Manufacturer Part Number: GRM7830
    MSRP: $299
    Size: 1.94", 17.19", 7.31" (HxWxD)
    Weight: 6.43 pounds
    Warranty of Product: Lifetime
    Warranty of Connected Equipment: Lifetime
    Warranty Amount of Connected Equipment: $5,000,000

    
    
    Panamax MAX® 500 DBS - Power Conditioner

    Front Panel

  • Power LED
  • Ground Fault LED
  • Line Fault LED
  • Over-voltage/Under-voltage LED

    Back Panel

  • 1 - Set of Coax Connectors for Satellite receiver
  • 2 - Sets of Coax Connectors for cable/antenna
  • 7 - Total Outlets
  • 2 - Always On Outlets
  • 5 - Switched Outlets
  • 10 foot power cord

    Manufacturer Part Number: GRM0505
    MSRP: $249
    Size: 1.94", 17.19", 7.31" (HxWxD)
    Weight: 5.87 pounds
    Warranty of Product: Lifetime
    Warranty of Connected Equipment: Lifetime
    Warranty Amount of Connected Equipment: $5,000,000

    
    
    Panamax MAX® 1500 AllPath - Power Conditioner

    Front Panel

  • Power LED
  • Ground Fault LED
  • Line Fault LED
  • Over-voltage/Under-voltage LED
  • Voltage Monitoring LEDs

    Back Panel

  • 1 - Set of Coax Connectors for Satellite receiver
  • 2 - Sets of Coax Connectors for cable/antenna
  • 10 - Total Outlets
  • 4 - Always On Outlets
  • 4 - Switched Outlets
  • 2 - Delayed Outlets
  • 2 - AllPath ports
  • 10 foot power cord

    Manufacturer Part Number: GRM1500
    MSRP: $449
    Size: 3.5", 17.19", 7.31" (HxWxD)
    Weight: 11.44 pounds
    Warranty of Product: Lifetime
    Warranty of Connected Equipment: Lifetime
    Warranty Amount of Connected Equipment: $5,000,000

    
    
    Features (All)
  • Constant Voltage Monitoring
  • Overvoltage/Under Voltage shutdown

    
    
    Company Information
    Panamax, Inc.
    150 Mitchell Blvd.
    San Rafael, CA. 94903

    Phone: 800-472-5555
    Website: http://www.panamax.com

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