Keeping Your SS Gear Always On..

Wharfedale Speakers

drkrack

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I have been experimenting this over the past few years and I have found that keeping the SS Gear Switched on (Muted or playing at very low volumes when I keep the power amplifier on ) for reasonable amounts of Time mostly say 4 - 6 hrs before a planned listening session, Gives immense improvement in overall SQ. I usually switch off the power amp and switch it on only when I start to listen. The Remaining devices in the chain say, DACs, preamplifier, Streamer (low power devices) are Very much benefitted by this approach of keeping them on for 4 to 6hrs. It helps the power amplifier too but Since the power amplifier consumes substantial power even during standby, I feel its prudent to switch it off.
I switch off the Components that tend to heat up over period of time like tube gear or Class A Amplifiers etc. This approach has led me to prefer the devices that consume less power in a standby mode and playing modes.

I recently Came Across certain audiophiles on the internet, who keep their gear always on, irrespective of the power consumption. Many people swear by this practice especially for SS gear and I'm quite unsure about the safety of the devices considering the crappie power outages prevalent in our country.

Dear FMs Kindly share your thoughts and practices in this regard, let's see if we can mutually agree on the possible best practices. Let's not debate about the Environmental impact of such practices (because its pretty evident) but instead focus the impact on SQ improvement with this practice.
 

raghupb

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I power off all equipment after a listening session.
Both the SS poweramps that I use start sounding better after about 30 mins of music through them.
Others, I really don't know.

Cheers,
Raghu
 

jigarpatel

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I keep Naim always on 24x7. It's common practice among naim users.
Also naim manual, says to keep amplifier for long period of time, to get consistent performance.
Please check attachment for naim manual snippet.

Component like DAC, CDT keep on standby.
Source component TV and Intel NUC, I switch off.

My observation
  • Naim amp takes very long to time (48 hrs) sound at it best, It start sounding good after 2 hrs.
  • Denafrips AREAS 2, even if kept on stand by, after turning it on it takes 2 hrs to sound best.
 

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Hiten

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from reading I know atleast transistor based amps do behave differently (Power transistors) when warm and is preferable. But just switching on (stand by mode) how much difference is difficult to tell. Even turntables stabilize to accurate speed after some time. Forgot where it was discussed. Probably on diyAudio.
regards.
 

square_wave

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This is very true. Some amplifier brands need more time to sound good. That is one of the reasons why I sold my Odyssey stratos amp many years ago. It needed about 6 hours to just open up. Keeping amps on in India is not a good option because of voltage fluctuations. In the US, people never switch their SS amps off. There are some amplifier brands who will not give you a power switch. I think block audio amps don't have switches at all.
 

SEANDSILVA

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I have been experimenting this over the past few years and I have found that keeping the SS Gear Switched on (Muted or playing at very low volumes when I keep the power amplifier on ) for reasonable amounts of Time mostly say 4 - 6 hrs before a planned listening session, Gives immense improvement in overall SQ. I usually switch off the power amp and switch it on only when I start to listen. The Remaining devices in the chain say, DACs, preamplifier, Streamer (low power devices) are Very much benefitted by this approach of keeping them on for 4 to 6hrs. It helps the power amplifier too but Since the power amplifier consumes substantial power even during standby, I feel its prudent to switch it off.
I switch off the Components that tend to heat up over period of time like tube gear or Class A Amplifiers etc. This approach has led me to prefer the devices that consume less power in a standby mode and playing modes.

I recently Came Across certain audiophiles on the internet, who keep their gear always on, irrespective of the power consumption. Many people swear by this practice especially for SS gear and I'm quite unsure about the safety of the devices considering the crappie power outages prevalent in our country.

Dear FMs Kindly share your thoughts and practices in this regard, let's see if we can mutually agree on the possible best practices. Let's not debate about the Environmental impact of such practices (because its pretty evident) but instead focus the impact on SQ improvement with this practice.
Atoll in their pre amp/power amp manual recommends that for optimum performance and for stages to reach their ideal working temperature, both amps should be switched on at least half an hour before any listening session. They also advise keeping the amps in stand-by position between listening sessions so that the power stages remain at their optimal temperatures.
I have always switched on around 30mins before use and found that the performance is good when the amps are warmed up. However, I never keep any gear in stand-by mode and always completely switch off whether its cdp or amps!
 

Mayasandra_l

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Being in Bangalore and at the tender mercy of overnight thunderstorms, I keep my gear switched off and plugged out. I also plug off if we are in midst of rains. I turn the Audiolab amp half hour before beginning my listening session. Ditto with my IFI stack and Xduoo tube amp for headphone listening.
 

firearm12

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I think its just a matter of warming up things before listening. 30 mins to 1 hr is ideal in my case to warm up.
 

Kannan

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I keep them switched off and they do sound a bit more balanced after warm-up after around 30 to 45 minutes.
Keeping them always on will be a hit on the monthly EB bills and why waste energy and add to pollution in an energy strapped and deteriorating world.

I guess I can wait that 30 odd minutes to get the best out of the system even if that is a small percentile of the whole.

The only explanation I can think of is the cleaning up of the residue current in the capacitor banks and other components and possible realignment of the magnetic fields if any. Now is that a can or worms?
 

Smadhu

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My experience is similar to that of most folks, system needs a warm up of thirty minutes from cold start.

However, I have read elsewhere, that keeping SS gear on barring room heaters (class A and Tubes) increases the longevity of the capacitors.

I am not technical but I presume these are the ones that get worn out and would require replacement over a decade or two.
 

Yelamanchili manohar

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As had been endorsed by most above replies. I would think that a minimum of 30 mins of warm up really helps. I have tube poweramps with a manual bias. And as per the maker's instructions, the amps have to be left on for atleast 30 mins for the tubes to heat up and the circuit to stabilize, before any bias measurements or adjustments are made.

So I usually switch on the entire chain atleast one hour before I plan a listen.
 

square_wave

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Folks, some solid state power amps will start sounding anywhere near their full potential only after 6 to 7 hours. Not sure why ?.... but they are like that! Before that, they are like chameleons. That is one thing to consider when buying amps to use in India.
 

rsjaurr

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I switch off everything and cover all the stuff. Then when I want to listen I just turn on everything and start enjoying the music. I do feel some improvement in about 30-40 minutes.
I have a R2R DAC, a tube preamp and a class A amps and I have been advised to keep the DAC on 24/7 but I have never done that. Even tube preamp and class A amps are supposed to give better SQ after leaving them on for few hours but I have never sat in front of my music system for more than 60-90 minutes.
 

superczar

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I have been experimenting this over the past few years and I have found that keeping the SS Gear Switched on (Muted or playing at very low volumes when I keep the power amplifier on ) for reasonable amounts of Time mostly say 4 - 6 hrs before a planned listening session, Gives immense improvement in overall SQ. I usually switch off the power amp and switch it on only when I start to listen. The Remaining devices in the chain say, DACs, preamplifier, Streamer (low power devices) are Very much benefitted by this approach of keeping them on for 4 to 6hrs. It helps the power amplifier too but Since the power amplifier consumes substantial power even during standby, I feel its prudent to switch it off.
I switch off the Components that tend to heat up over period of time like tube gear or Class A Amplifiers etc. This approach has led me to prefer the devices that consume less power in a standby mode and playing modes.

I recently Came Across certain audiophiles on the internet, who keep their gear always on, irrespective of the power consumption. Many people swear by this practice especially for SS gear and I'm quite unsure about the safety of the devices considering the crappie power outages prevalent in our country.

Dear FMs Kindly share your thoughts and practices in this regard, let's see if we can mutually agree on the possible best practices. Let's not debate about the Environmental impact of such practices (because its pretty evident) but instead focus the impact on SQ improvement with this practice.
I leave all class D/ switched equipment always on - ready to stream and play
I switch off all class AB equipment (but in standby mode and not disconnected from mains )

My reason to do so is based on convenience rather than for improvement in SQ.
In addition, completely powering off equipment adds avoidable stress , esp to the power supply components and caps each time they are switched on
the latter part is debatable - but leaving equipment in standby anyway does not hurt
 

drkrack

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Both the SS poweramps that I use start sounding better after about 30 mins of music through them.
Others, I really don't know.
That’s a routine warm up time with most SS gear, One Audio CD playtime (~45min) as I usually put it for easy understanding. Parasound, NAD, Marantz usually fall in this group. I'm talking something beyond that warm up time .

This is very true. Some amplifier brands need more time to sound good. That is one of the reasons why I sold my Odyssey stratos amp many years ago. It needed about 6 hours to just open up.
Yes I found that with Plinius and Naim Amplifiers. They sound more coherent, smooth after 6hrs.

Even turntables stabilize to accurate speed after some time. Forgot where it was discussed. Probably on diyAudio.
That's interesting, dig it up and share the link if possible.

Denafrips AREAS 2, even if kept on stand by, after turning it on it takes 2 hrs to sound best.
have a R2R DAC, a tube preamp and a class A amps and I have been advised to keep the DAC on 24/7 but I have never done that.
I was advised by Terminator DAC users to keep it on always, though I didn't muster enough courage for that, but keeping it on overnight for early morning listening has yielded me very good results.

Even tube preamp and class A amps are supposed to give better SQ after leaving them on for few hours
My Schiit Freya preamp had a option of switching off the tubes in SS modes, I could keep it switched on for extended hours without worrying about unintended tube usage.

In the US, people never switch their SS amps off.
Yes these recommendations mostly come from USA audiophile community, they even go to the extent of saying that, you're under utilizing the potential of your amplifier if you are not keeping them always on. This recommendation led me to discuss the topic with our FM friends.

One of the noted recommendation comes from Paul
leave all class D/ switched equipment always on - ready to stream and play
I switch off all class AB equipment (but in standby mode and not disconnected from mains )

My reason to do so is based on convenience rather than for improvement in SQ.
class D may not benefit much in my opinion, class AB amps will definitely perform better after few hours of keeping them switched on.
 

catalyst360

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My Cambridge AXR takes about 30 mins to sound its best. I just use this warm up time for streaming new playlists and other music that I am not serious about. Once it gets warmed up, I load up the good stuff.
 

Black_Hawk

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Interesting thread and it was nice to go through the replies here from different FMs.

I personally keep my equipment off and turn it on when I listen to music. But with me spending more time indoors now post COVID either one of my stereo setups at home is always powered on and streaming music from Spotify. During thunderstorms (which can occur pretty frequently in Kolkata) I turn off all audio equipment and unplug them completely even though almost all of them run from UPS units.

My main computer and my home server PC remain on 24/7 and only turned off if there is a power outage, heavy thunderstorm or for maintenance.
 

NewBee2020

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My Nelson Pass Class A pre amp takes atleast 45-60 Mins to sound good to its full potential.
In Bangalore,I am scared to keep the equipment turned on always due to the quality and voltage fluctuations of power.
I unplug all of them after listening to music.
 
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