This assemblage shows the PowerStation's four-sided noise-filtering sandwich…

… followed below the break by what makes that €129 AC iPurifier tick which permanently sits in the PowerStation's snout like a white truffle. The more of those you add into free outlets, the more effective their UHF noise filtering gets say iFi. Ansuz promote similar multiplier action for their active Tesla coils. So do Furutech's NCF barrels. Should you distrust all such parts in your AC path, you'll want a purely passive power distributor without any caps, coil or resistors à la Titan Audio Eros. Or you route the AC's three legs through sealed chambers filled with noise-absorptive compounds as Akiko, Audio Phonique and Shunyata do. Those are different gigs. Today is about doing it actively; without hocking a kidney.

I learnt that to expedite shipments from inventory, iFi have fixed their standard power cord length to 1.8m. Whilst Vic was sure that their factory in China could produce custom lengths, it would postpone my assignment by a few months. We thus decided that easy would do it instead. I'd receive five 1.8m cords as Nova, five as Supanova plus two PowerStations to run the split downstairs system of separate source and amp stacks on one sidewall and between the speakers respectively. The only cords that iFi couldn't replace were sundry 3m specimens from wall to conditioner/distributor; and one 6m run to the upstairs Dynaudio subwoofer. All other resident cords—mostly by Allnic and Crystal Cable—could get swapped out. I was in the iPower biz; and full-on colonial style so US.

With an open PowerStation on my desktop, onlookers could be forgiven for first wondering where all the fancy 'stuff' went. It looks conspicuously sparse inside though most sorted. Miniature PCB tuck into the barrel at left so remain out of sight. One feature not often seen is a mains switch. Competitors make fanfares for not having one. That puts owners of smaller kit with external wall warts in always-on hell to compromise longevity. Nothing likes to be 'on' indefinitely. Sleep is good. With iFi, one convenient switch above the IEC powers down the lot even where it lacks its own mains rockers. Considering price positioning and primary audience, that struck me as the right choice. Let posh purists brag about their zero switches. They can afford to replace burnt-out switching bricks due to 24/7 negligence.

More shout-outs are due the PowerStation's stylish shape from its trapezoidal cross section to the rakishly sliced end with edge facets; and generous socketry. Where competitors offer 4 outlets or 6 at most, iFi give us 8. That's more power for more kit. Fully kitted out. Just as relevant, these sockets had excellent grip. No limp handshakes from wobbly connections. Time to go sonic. After replacing my $1'200 4-outlet Furutech GTO 2D NCF, the iFi greeted me with two green LED. Both grounding and power polarity were correct.