Help, I need a new outlet ran

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Dan Marchewka, Oct 29, 2001.

  1. Dan Marchewka

    Dan Marchewka Stunt Coordinator

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    I just received my Acurus A250 today. When I turn it on and turn up the volume my Denon 3802 starts clicking on and off. However, when I turn the amp off, everything works fine, so I am assuming I am drawing too much power off my AC line. Here is my question. I would like to tell the electrician exactly what I want, but am not sure what I need. Here is my equipment:
    Denon 3802
    Acurus A200x5
    Acurus A250
    Panansonic H1000
    Hughes Titan E86 STB
    Mitsubishi WS-55807
    Atlantic Technology PBM 262
    Panamax 500 DBS
    If you could tell me what gauge wire should be run and the amps of the breakers, it would be greatly appreciated since the electrician is coming on Wednesday.
    Thanks,
    Dan
    [Edited last by Dan Marchewka on October 29, 2001 at 08:27 PM]
     
  2. Joe Cole

    Joe Cole Second Unit

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    Dan,
    Hi. Under no circumstances would I say that I am an expert in this field, but, based on my own HT experiences my recommendations are as follows:
    1. two 20 amp circuits.
    2. Use at least 12 gauge cabling
    3. 20 amp outlets, Eagle, forget the model from Lowes
    4. one circuit for the amps
    5. and one for most every thing else.
    6. maybe 3 20 amp circuits......
    7. [​IMG]
    ------------------
    Joe C.
    Who's scruffy looking?
     
  3. LarrySkelly

    LarrySkelly Stunt Coordinator

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    In addition to above. I'm not an electrician so it would be interesting to hear someone confirm my thoughts below.
    - you should be able to add up the power requirements of each of your components, by looking at the specs. If there isn't a peak rating for the amp, then double it, say.
    - 12 gauge is not heavy enough, go with 10 or 8, especially if its not a short run.
    - the electrician may suggest to run a single 10/3 circuit with shared ground return (white) and safety ground (copper) instead of separate 10/2 circuits (like you usually do for a split receptacle). I suspect you'll get cleaner power running two completely separate circuits right back to the box (in the same that way you get better sound by bi-wiring speakers).
    - Run all circuits from the same side of the bus, in your panel (the electrician will know what this means). Otherwise you run the risk of having a difference in potential between the circuits, and this can cause ground loop induced hum.
    Any electricians out there?
    ------------------
    Upgrading: 'What if this is as good as it gets?'
     
  4. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Dan,
    I wish you had posted this before you called the electrician. If so I would have recommended getting a voltmeter and taking some readings at the point where the Denon started acting up. It seems highly unlikely the amp could make the wall voltage drop low enough to make the receiver malfunction.
    Also, you didn’t note if the problem when you turn up the Denon happens when a program is playing, or even with no signal present.
    That said, did you have all the gear, amps included, plugged into the Panamax? If so, it could have caused the Denon to be starved for voltage and/or amperage.
    But since the electrician is coming, what you do depends on your budget. Since the problem began with the addition of theA250, a single new circuit should suffice. Just make sure it is connected to the same phase or leg (at the service panel) as the circuit you are currently using. (Connecting equipment to circuits on separate legs can cause ground loops.)
    However, it is never a bad idea to have dedicated circuits for the whole home theater system (that is, serving the equipment and nothing else), and the cost of adding a second circuit should be minimal: the cost of an extra breaker, cable for the extra run, and additional outlet(s). Make sure you have enough outlets installed to meet your needs (a “dedicated circuit” does not mean a single outlet, as some think). For instance, if your sub is located a distance from the rest of the gear, have an outlet there included in the circuit.
    Most people here tend to recommend 20A circuits, even though 15A circuits usually suffice, especially if you have more than one dedicated circuit. However, more “headroom” is never bad. However, even if you do have 20A circuits put in, there is no need for 20A outlet devices, unless one of your amps requires one. Typically 15A outlets are used in a residence, even with 20A circuits.
    The electrician will probably run 12 ga. wire for your circuits, which is within code for even a 20A circuit. However, if you can afford 10ga. wire, once again, the “headroom” never hurts. You could cut costs a little and only have 10ga. run for the circuit for the amp(s). (8ga. service is usually for high-amperage commercial or industrial feeds. Besides, I don’t think anyone makes 8ga. romex.) As Larry noted, don’t let the electrian try to “skate” with feeding two circuits with 12/3 or 10/3 romex. If he does that he will have to use both service legs, a no-no, as noted above.
    Also the electrician will want to put in “cheapie” 49¢residential-grade outlets. Ask instead for heavy-duty commercial-grade outlets. They are better able to withstand continuous loads, and they grip the plugs better. Probably no functional difference for HT applications, but again the “headroom” thing. Commercial outlets can be had for $3-5 ea. at Lowes or Home Depot.
    As Joe noted, put the amps on one circuit (provided a single 15- or 20A circuit can accommodate both of them) and the rest of the gear on the other one.
    By the way, it is never a good idea to plug power amps into a power strip or line conditioner, unless it is a quality unit and rated for more than the amp’s current demands.
    Good Luck,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
    ------------------
    My Equipment List
    [Edited last by Wayne A. Pflughaupt on October 29, 2001 at 11:22 PM]
     
  5. Dan Marchewka

    Dan Marchewka Stunt Coordinator

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    Wayne,
    If I got a voltmeter, how would I use it? Do you think it might be the Denon? It happens on both DVD and DSS. I just watched a DVD at lower volumes, but when I turned it up to over -10 it started shorting out. With the A250 off it didn't short out all the way up to +5. Could it be the amp by chance even?
    Thanks,
    Dan
    I did have the amps plugged into the Panamax and the sub into the Denon.
    [Edited last by Dan Marchewka on October 29, 2001 at 11:28 PM]
     
  6. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Dan,
    You can measure the line voltage by setting the meter to AC volts. If there is a scale option, select one that reads above 120V. Then put the probes into the left and right slots of the outlet. Remember, if they touch you will have a dead short. For safety, it might be better to place one probe in the left slot of one outlet, and the other probe in the right slot of a neighboring outlet. You will see the voltage drop during high-impact scenes (which demand more current), but voltage should stay above 110.
     
  7. Dan Marchewka

    Dan Marchewka Stunt Coordinator

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    Wayne,
    Thanks for the info. I do not have enough outlets to plug the amps into an outlet right now, so I need to plug them into the panamax. I plugged the sub into the outlet next to the sub and it cleared up the problem. I am going to see how much it will cost me to run two new outlets. Since I don't know anything about electricians except they are pretty expensive by the hour, would you know how much it might cost for two dedicated 20-amp outlets to be run? The distance is around 50 feet if you go around the outside of the house to the main breaker box.
    Thanks for all your help,
    Dan
    [Edited last by Dan Marchewka on October 30, 2001 at 06:59 PM]
     
  8. PaulKH

    PaulKH Second Unit

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    Dan - after reading most of the posts on this thread I felt like I needed to have all my HT electrical system ripped out! I have my receiver plugged into a power bar, no dedicated circuits, etc. But it performs flawlessly.
    Then I read that you had the powered sub drawing power off the receiver and thought uh-oh. If changing that fixed the cut out problem, and it sounds fine, I wouldn't change anything and save yourself some money.
    While I definitely respect the cautious and often purist approaches frequently discussed on this forum, I think a lot of it is overkill for me.
    Good luck.
     
  9. Frank_S

    Frank_S Supporting Actor

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    Dan, for the past year I have wanted to add 2 dedicated circuits to my HT but electricians around here(Silicon Valley)are just too busy it seems.
    Anyway, I just wanted to let you know that I run all my gear off 1 15 amp circuit and have for the past year.
    I have equipment similar to you and have never had a problem and I play movies and music very loud.
    Below is my equipment list FYI.
    Aragon 8008x3(amp)
    Aragon dual mono 8002(amp)
    Classe SSP-25 pre/pro
    Cary CD-303 CDP
    Toshiba TW40X81 RPTV
    Toshiba SD-5109 DVD
    Toshiba DST-3000 HDTV Tuner
    Magnum Dynalab Tuner
    2 Richard Gray power company units
     
  10. Michael Lee

    Michael Lee Supporting Actor

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