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SRG Sites > NewTechReview > Reviews > Panamax MAX 7500-Pro Home Theater Power Center

Panamax MAX 7500-Pro Home Theater Power Center

Manufacturer: Panamax
Disclaimer: The manufacturer provided NewTechReview with a NFR unit of this product for review.
Reviewed by Scott R. Garrigus
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Most people I know have basic home theater systems. By this I mean that they have some sort of widescreen TV, a disc player, and possibly a surround sound speaker system (although many still don't even have that). To power all the components, they simply plug them into the wall. Some might go as far as to get a surge protector strip so that they can plug everything into one outlet and have a small semblance of protection from electrical spikes. Most, however, don't give much thought to the quality of the electrical power being fed to their equipment. That's probably because they didn't really spend a lot of money on the equipment in the first place. But if you are someone who has invested thousands of dollars in a state-of-the-art home theater system, you more than likely want to make sure it doesn’t get damaged. You also want to make sure you are getting the best performance possible. This is where the Max 7500-Pro from Panamax comes into the picture.

Introducing the Max 7500-Pro
The Max 7500-Pro is a high-end power center that provides line conditioning, regulating and power protection for audio/video entertainment gear. It uses a 720 VA Isolation Transformer to provide power to five outlet banks. Via electromagnetic coupling, the AC power being supplied to your gear is regenerated so that there is no EMI (electromagnetic interference) or RFI (radio frequency interference) to contaminate the audio/video signals. This means that by simply plugging your gear into the Max 7500-Pro you can remove any audio pops, hisses, hums or video artifacts that may hinder the enjoyment of your home theater.

Audio/Video Component Connections
Utilizing the connection diagram in the manual, it is very easy to get your audio/video components plugged into the Max 7500-Pro. The first bank of outlets (each bank has two outlets) on the back of the unit provides 12 amps of Double L filtered always on power for low current components such as a home automation control module and a PVR (TiVo), devices for which you would want to have constant power. Bank 2 provides the same type of power except that these outlets are switched, so they are better suited for an audio/video receiver and maybe a VCR (if you still have one). Banks 3 and 4 provide 6 amps of switched power, but these banks are special because they are completely isolated from the rest of the system. This means that they provide the cleanest power possible and are used best with components that are most susceptible to interference, such as a CD player, DVD player, satellite receiver and television. Bank 5 is a switched high current bank that provides 15 amps of power, which is suitable for high powered components like an amplifier and powered subwoofer.

Cable Connections
In addition to the power connections, the Max 7500-Pro provides protection to a number of cable connections. Included are two banks of Universal Coax Jacks that each provide two pairs of F-Connectors, which can be used for Satellite TV, Cable TV, Antenna or Cable Modem signal line protection. There is also a set of LAN In/Out connections for Ethernet. And finally, there are three telephone jacks (1 In & 2 Out) for telephone line and pay-per-view line protection. By the way, as an added bonus, you'll find a convenience lamp in the box that connects to a USB port in the back, which helps provide some extra light when you're trying to find your way around.

Operating the Max 7500-Pro
After you've made all your connections, a simple push of the main power button on the Max will power up all of your connected components. There are two power up modes to choose from for each of the outlet banks. With the group of two-position slide switches on the back of the Max, you can designate whether each bank is activated at the same time the main power button is pushed or comes on after a delay. Using the delay mode is nice because it keeps your electrical circuits from experiencing any kind of large draw in power all at once, which could possibly trigger a circuit breaker. Each component is turned on/off sequentially (after a delay) providing a smooth startup and shutdown sequence.

The Max also provides some very sophisticated custom control via DC Trigger Input/Output jacks, which let you trigger a startup or shutdown sequence from an external device. And you can use the RS232 interface connection to actually program the Max to perform specific startup and shutdown sequences as well as control many of its other functions. We did not have a chance to check out these more advanced operation modes.

Power to the Max
As I mentioned earlier, the Max 7500-Pro is a high-end piece of equipment and thus comes with a high-end price. However, for that price, you get one of the most sophisticated power protection products on the market. With five sets of outlet banks (10 power connections in all – actually 11 including the convenience outlet on the front), you can easily protect all of the components in your home theater system. The Max 7500-Pro ensures that your components get the highest-quality power possible even if your home electrical system is less than optimal. If you've invested thousands of dollars in your home theater system, then it just makes sense to spend a bit more to make sure that system is protected.
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