Some "electrical" tips if interested...

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murali

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These are some tips from the power/electricity viewpoint based on several years of research and trials in building a decent music system (minimum: a source, typically CD player, amplifier, integrated or pre/power, speakers, may be subwoofers):
*Though stock power cord vs expensive power cord is still a subject of several debates, my personal experience is that there is substantial benefit from well made power cords compared to stock cords supplied with equipment. I find shielded power cords the best for digital equipment like CD players and non-shielded for amplifiers. There are excellent power cords built at reasonable prices by Chris ven Haus (vhaudio), Tel wire power cords etc.
*Equally important as power cords are the connectors used, including IEC and power plugs and wall sockets. An excellent connector from companies like Furutech, Oyaide etc makes a huge improvement in performance.
*Before attempting a review and plan for power cords and connectors, it is always best to understand certain basics. The NEMA type plugs and sockets used in USA are the most common but I tend to keep away from them as they are basically designed for 120 volt power and not 230 volt we have in India. Wattgate, Hubbell etc make excellent connectors but unfortunately not to 230 volt application.
*So it is better to standardise all your wall sockets and plugs to 230 volt application, the most common being European Schuko and UK types to ensure maximum safety. I use exclusively European Schuko connectors (wall sockets, IEC and male plugs).
*Even if you have a power conditioner, don't plug in your high current equipment like amplifiers into them, whatever the manufacturer says.
*I do not believe in using a voltage stabiliser in a hifi system as it restricts power.
*I have made a multiple wall socket box star-wired inside to plug in my amplifiers and preamplifier. A Richard Gray conditioner is plugged in parallel and digital equipment like CD and DVD players, surround processor etc are plugged into the conditioner.
*A polarity check helps a lot, ie. ensure hot and neutral are connected correctly. A cheap van den Hul polarity checker is useful for this or the local electrician can check this.
*A summary of my power cords: VH Audio Flavor-4 with Furutech plugs in pre and power amplifiers, Tel Wire power cord with Oyaide beryllium plugs in CD player, XLO Reference 2 Type 10 power cord in DVD player, van den Hul Mainstream power cords in subwoofers.
Believe me, these small things make a big difference in performance of whatever system you have.

> murali
 

dinyaar

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Hi Murali,
Some interesting observations. Most of which i would readily agree to.
Few questions as i am a bit confused
Why Non Shielded power cords for amps? Do u mean NON SCREENED?
Wattgate i thought was made in UK so voltage is not an issue. Maybe am wrong.
I too prefer plugging amps directly but in some parts of our country thats just not possible.
I have a polarity checker but u can check live/neutral with a local tester too. When u face the wall outlets live is on the RIGHT>
Lastly what is "star wired"? I ask because i make my own extension strips if needed and basically loop the Wires inside.
Thanks
Regards
 
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murali

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As far as I know, Wattgate, Hubbell etc are US makes.
A digital player requires protection from RF and hence shielded cables are recommended. Not for amplifiers.
It depends on how the wall socket is wired inside and I have seen several installations where even adjacent sockets are wired reverse.
By star wiring, I mean the live wire enters inside the extension strip and then connected from one point to all the live terminals of the sockets (in parallel), the same with neutral. The other way is to loop the wire from one socket to another (series).
Hope this is clear.
> murali
 

myriad

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Those were helpful tips Murali.
To add to your note, one can also make good braided power cord with Finolex wire. I found them to sound better than stock cords.
Thanks
Vasu
 

dinyaar

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As far as I know, Wattgate, Hubbell etc are US makes.
A digital player requires protection from RF and hence shielded cables are recommended. Not for amplifiers.
It depends on how the wall socket is wired inside and I have seen several installations where even adjacent sockets are wired reverse.
By star wiring, I mean the live wire enters inside the extension strip and then connected from one point to all the live terminals of the sockets (in parallel), the same with neutral. The other way is to loop the wire from one socket to another (series).
Hope this is clear.
> murali

Well i bought some wattgate from london (IEC and UK flat 3 pin tops) and hence assumed.
Yes i 'loop' the wire from socket to socket when making a power strip.
Yes Murli all is clear!!!!!!!!!

Yes myriad u can make good power cords with finolex cables too. Just use decent connectors or the purpose is defeated. Have made some using finolex 4sq.mm three core cable and supra connectors and my friends seem to love them.
 

Axl Rose

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I'm a civil engineer but I love physics/electricals/tronics and as far as I know it shouldn't matter much if it's from the US or from the UK... 'cuz generally, not always but generally, wattage and current carrying capacity are the limiting factors...
in the US, the power outlets/tops are rated for 120 V but for 10 A and W=VxIxT, so that would be like 1200 watts; here in India they are rated for 230 V and 5 A so that is less than 1200 watts....

PLEASE CORRECT ME IF I'M WRONG.
 

marsilians

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in the US, the power outlets/tops are rated for 120 V but for 10 A and W=VxIxT, so that would be like 1200 watts; here in India they are rated for 230 V and 5 A so that is less than 1200 watts....

PLEASE CORRECT ME IF I'M WRONG.

I believe in US, Canada, etc. the standard circuit is 15amps and a 20 amp is used for high current draws like clothes dryer, electric oven etc. Most other circuits are 110-120V 15 A
 

arj

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I guess the point being made by Axl Rose could be extrapolated as the ampere rating of a US plug is better so it should be more "over-designed" for indian conditions than the UK/Indian one. That was my understanding as well (ie it is the ampere rating of the power conductors which is more important ).
 
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murali

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This is not fully correct. Drawing a similarity between heat and electrical energies, the voltage rating is like temperature rating and current flow like heat flow. The voltage rating is mainly applicable to the insulation part of the electric and generally a 120 volt rated plug or connector can damage its insulation inside if used in 230 volt service. Strictly speaking, it is illegal to use lower volatge rated connectors in higher voltage applications. In hifi we don't have major current flows but still a lower voltage insulation can fail in 230 volt application.
I would strongly advice against using 120 volt rated electrics in Indian environment.

> murali
 

arj

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i believe most of the well known plugs are rated for both 120 as well as 250V Ac. at least the wattgates i use are rated at both ie 15A/120VAC or 10A/250VAC.

but your point on dielectrics is true...if not rated for 230V the cable can cause a hazard.
 

flypig

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If you have concealed wiring /covered in metal pipe then perhaps it makes sense to have a shielded cable.
If you have your mains wiring in plastic casing then shielding the last 3 feet will not make a difference.
:(
 

hifiashok

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Dear Murali,

Thank you for the tips. Being a newbie at hi-fi, I am still learning.

I use a CVT after the wall source. I use a 'Belkin' surge protector and splitter/multi socket extension after this. I connect all my equipment to this. I turn on my amp. first (speakers come on before this, since ES. Tape deck also comes on before this). Then the CDP/SACDP.

Pl. advise if this is ok.

The reason I turn on my amp. first is because I have observed that the CDP reboots if I turn it on first and then the amp.

Thanx in advance.
 

sriramiyer

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These are some tips from the power/electricity viewpoint based on several years of research and trials in building a decent music system (minimum: a source, typically CD player, amplifier, integrated or pre/power, speakers, may be subwoofers):
*Though stock power cord vs expensive power cord is still a subject of several debates, my personal experience is that there is substantial benefit from well made power cords compared to stock cords supplied with equipment. I find shielded power cords the best for digital equipment like CD players and non-shielded for amplifiers. There are excellent power cords built at reasonable prices by Chris ven Haus (vhaudio), Tel wire power cords etc.
*Equally important as power cords are the connectors used, including IEC and power plugs and wall sockets. An excellent connector from companies like Furutech, Oyaide etc makes a huge improvement in performance.
*Before attempting a review and plan for power cords and connectors, it is always best to understand certain basics. The NEMA type plugs and sockets used in USA are the most common but I tend to keep away from them as they are basically designed for 120 volt power and not 230 volt we have in India. Wattgate, Hubbell etc make excellent connectors but unfortunately not to 230 volt application.
*So it is better to standardise all your wall sockets and plugs to 230 volt application, the most common being European Schuko and UK types to ensure maximum safety. I use exclusively European Schuko connectors (wall sockets, IEC and male plugs).
*Even if you have a power conditioner, don't plug in your high current equipment like amplifiers into them, whatever the manufacturer says.
*I do not believe in using a voltage stabiliser in a hifi system as it restricts power.
*I have made a multiple wall socket box star-wired inside to plug in my amplifiers and preamplifier. A Richard Gray conditioner is plugged in parallel and digital equipment like CD and DVD players, surround processor etc are plugged into the conditioner.
*A polarity check helps a lot, ie. ensure hot and neutral are connected correctly. A cheap van den Hul polarity checker is useful for this or the local electrician can check this.
*A summary of my power cords: VH Audio Flavor-4 with Furutech plugs in pre and power amplifiers, Tel Wire power cord with Oyaide beryllium plugs in CD player, XLO Reference 2 Type 10 power cord in DVD player, van den Hul Mainstream power cords in subwoofers.
Believe me, these small things make a big difference in performance of whatever system you have.

> murali

Hi,
I have ordered the 42 inch Panasonic PV 8 and the Onkyo 5100 and now need to prepare the electricals before getting the systems installed. I have two 5 Amp switches next to the area where I want to install the above (will be adding the OPPO 980 to the above two in a couple of weeks).

Need advice on the electrical preparation

My plan before reading the above thread was to
a) to connect the TV direct on one of the 5 Amp switches
b) to connect a voltage stabilizer to the other 5 Amp switch and connnect the Onkyo AVR (and the OPPO 980) to the stabilizer.
c) was thinking of asking my electrician to put in an additional switch and connect the woofer on this switch

There was something I read about 15 Amp switches being preferred but wasnt entirely convinced by the rationale.

My question..what in the opinion of the experts on this forum is the ideal electricals for my setup. I am not an electrical engineer and have never built power strips etc by myself..would prefer to buy good components and get an electrician to setup the rest.

Additionally would appreciate recommendations on the cables .. know there are several threads on this forum which discuss cables but would like specific recommendations for the Panny PV8 + Oppo 980 +Onkyo 5100 combination (Onkyo 5100 does not have HD audio over HDMI capability). Am wondering how the Oppo 980's capabilities can best be leveraged :confused:
:confused:

regards
Sriram Iyer
 

saikat74

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Just had a small query. just got my Oppo DVD player which came with a detachable power chord... The plug on the chord is US polarized.... one side is slightly wider than the other (pic attached)

Does it matter which end goes in where? Or do I have to be careful... I can use a tester... So far i've read the narrow side goes into the 'hot' side (light comes on tester) Is this right?

Please explain it to me like a 5 yr old...
 

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amol12

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Just had a small query. just got my Oppo DVD player which came with a detachable power chord... The plug on the chord is US polarized.... one side is slightly wider than the other (pic attached)

Does it matter which end goes in where? Or do I have to be careful... I can use a tester... So far i've read the narrow side goes into the 'hot' side (light comes on tester) Is this right?

Please explain it to me like a 5 yr old...

This might be for a 2 yr old but please use a appropriate step down transformer if the player is not meant for 240V.
 

venkatcr

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Just had a small query. just got my Oppo DVD player which came with a detachable power chord... The plug on the chord is US polarized.... one side is slightly wider than the other (pic attached)

Does it matter which end goes in where? Or do I have to be careful... I can use a tester... So far i've read the narrow side goes into the 'hot' side (light comes on tester) Is this right?

Please explain it to me like a 5 yr old...

In the US, the walls sockets have one socket larger than the other, and the plugs are also made that way for convenience.

In India you will be using an adapter that will have a US socket on one side, and the Indian plug on the other. In such adapters, both the sockets will be of the same size. You can fit the Oppo plug any way you want. It makes no difference.

Cheers
 

saikat74

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This might be for a 2 yr old but please use a appropriate step down transformer if the player is not meant for 240V.

Thanks for the advice. The player is rated from 110V to 240V 50-60hz. So I don't think i'll need a step down transformer...

Thanks Venkat...
 

arj

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IMHo it is important to ensure that the Fuse is always on the "Live". if the live and neutral get interchanged the fuse would be on the neutral wire and in case of any sudden spike the components may blow up before the fuse !

i would suggest you check the live socket with a tester and then plug it in so that the Live matches..
 

hifiashok

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saikat bhai,

pl. check the plug. there is a prominent 'L' and 'N' mentioned thereon.

allign the L to the socket point where the tester burns on.

as a matter of fact, you may have trouble getting the plug into sockets, owing to the one thicker/broader flat pin.
 
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