Each Boenicke Audio Power Gate can be customized. The CHF 7'960 base distributor sports a permanently attached 1-meter M2 mains cord to the wall. As Sven explains, a screwed conductor's copper strands oxidize over time to become semi-conductive RF receivers. That means sonic degradation. He prefers to skip the usual power inlet and other internal connections to hard-wire instead. Next to four standard Schuko outlets thus sit 7 groups of three holes each. These can sprout hardwired tails. The two larger bores support neutral/live veins, the smaller center the ground connection. Voilà, a client may order up to 7 captive power cords to exit the box. For review, I neither ordered the most basic nor fully loaded version but something in-between. I asked for three hardwired component cords which each terminated in translucent IEC heads and book an extra CHF 2'540/ea.

For years already Sven has nurtured fanatical concern over resonance control and signal conditioning. His favorite counter measures are inherently universal so like in his speakers, they factor in this product. Although it's a fully passive power distributor, calling it a passive conditioner wouldn't be wrong either given built-in Bybee bullets, LessLoss C-MARC wiring and four Firewall 64X modules. The wooden exterior plus a series resonator and two parallel units inside keep resonances at bay.

A parallel resonator being installed on a Boenicke midrange driver.

10% silver-soldered connections promise unobstructed signal flow and long-term reliability. Coils, caps and resistors are strictly verboten. Each Power Gate carries a brushed stainless steel nameplate on one side and two BR.Big Black Ravioli isolation pads on the belly. The less susceptible to its surroundings a conductor is, the better it performs. Fully aware of C-MARC's noise cancelling, Sven has incorporated this LessLoss wire wherever possible and some time ago even financed a scaling-up experiment which resulted in upper-end versions exclusive to him. The Boenicke M2 cords hardwired to my loaner box combined coaxial C-MARC for their neutral and live legs and C-MARC's large hookup wire for ground. Two wooden blocks with felt inserts per cable kept their three separate lines properly spaced all the way from their solder joints inside the box to the translucent IEC sockets where they must meet. This explains why these cords were flat, soft and quite flexible despite their ribbon-type width.

Let's address the elephant in the porcelain shoppe. Merciless math tells us that my loaner demands CHF 15'580 with Swiss VAT, the maxed-out version with seven captive M2 power cords a cool CHF 25'740. Ouch. But several things must be taken into account. The basic Power Gate buys not one but two products: a distributor box and a quality power cord to the wall. Each added M2 replaces a standard counterpart. On labor, it takes Sven ~15 hours to assemble a Power Gate at Swiss wages. One meter of LessLoss C-MARC coax sells for $156. My sample required 8 meters plus 4 meters of large hookup wire at $80/m. 3 x Bybee bullets inside demand $520, 4 x LessLoss Firewall 64X modules add $1'600 and the wooden enclosure $450. That's not counting Sven's signature resonators, high-frequency noise drain, Furutech outlets and plugs. It's how a Boenicke Audio Power Gate with single cord eats up CHF 4'530 in parts/labor if you were to DIY one. This very expensive product thus isn't cheap to make.

Upon asking how the Power Gate came to be, Sven explained that he saw too many compromises in existing solutions. To him sonic performance alone mattered so some functional compromises were acceptable. Several months spent with my loaner were sufficient to notice certain quirks. The flat M2 cables with their C-MARC lines exposed at either end weren't exactly easy to align without twisting and the large wooden spacer blocks didn't help. The main box with its two small Black Ravioli isolators was quite stable when positioned and balanced just so but a gentle tug on any hardwired cord easily overturned the base. The wooden openings around the Schuko outlets were a tight fit for regular plugs so any non-standard connector of greater diameter should refuse to go in.