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Leave amps on or off?

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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, DJGopal said:

Leaving on doesn't create higher temperatures though. 

Of course it does. 

 

Being on uses up the life of the capacitors.

 

A simple google search and you will find a plethora of info on the subject.  This is a random one I just found

 

https://www.illinoiscapacitor.com/pdf/Papers/Life expectancy of Aluminum electrolytic capacitors.pdf

 

Operating conditions directly affect the life of an aluminum electrolytic capacitor. The ambient temperature has the largest effect on life. The relationship between life and temperature follows a chemical reaction formula called Arrhenius' Law of Chemical Activity. Simply put, the law says that life of a capacitor doubles for every 10 degree Celsius decrease in temperature (within limits).

Edited by March Audio

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10 minutes ago, March Audio said:

Simply put, the law says that life of a capacitor doubles for every 10 degree Celsius decrease in temperature (within limits).

The US military also studied this over many decades and came to the same conclusion. I have the paper somewhere on my server, but IIRC, I got it from Pete Millett's archive.

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Posted (edited)
1 minute ago, A9X said:

The US military also studied this over many decades and came to the same conclusion. I have the paper somewhere on my server, but IIRC, I got it from Pete Millett's archive.

Oh its nothing more than basic electronics design.  Go to any cap manufacturer and you will find data on cap life.

Edited by March Audio

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5 minutes ago, March Audio said:

Oh its nothing more than basic electronics design.  Go to any cap manufacturer and you will find data on cap life.

I'm quite aware of this, and it was first brought up to me when I was studying, and working for STC in the early 80's. I was merely backing up your point, with the fact that a large organisation, with a lot of very expensive electronics, actually studied this over decades and came to the same conclusion.

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Posted (edited)
21 minutes ago, A9X said:

I'm quite aware of this, and it was first brought up to me when I was studying, and working for STC in the early 80's. I was merely backing up your point, with the fact that a large organisation, with a lot of very expensive electronics, actually studied this over decades and came to the same conclusion.

Of course sorry if I implied anything else :)

 

I think what concerns me is that there is sometimes a lack of critical thinking in this hobby of audio electronics.  As mentioned earlier, an amp that changes its sound enough for a listener to notice due to temperature variations, is not actually a good design.  Its not thermally stable.  To me it puts amps that must be left on to obtain consistent sound quality in a different light; i.e. its not a good thing.

Edited by March Audio

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^^ I agree with you.

Don't worry, I'm not one of those easily offended types, unlike many around here.

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I leave mine on all the time. But it gets used daily, so would have to turn ON and OFF each day. I believe thermal degradation (repeated heat-up-cool down) of components shortens their life.

The only reasons to turn OFF are: 1) lengthen the life of electrolytic caps 2) cost of electricity.

I have solid state power amp (ME75) from 1985. It was (however) designed to remaiin ON 24/7.

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When I got my power amp I was advised to leave it on 24/7, which I did because it didn't have a power switch.  I was aware that it took time after being turned on to reach optimum quality.  15 years ago I was aware that electricity was getting more expensive, so I got a power switch installed.  Now I turn it on about an hour before use in order to enjoy it, it sounds horrible when first turned on.  I find it an inconvenience, but I live with it.  It's warming up now as I type. 

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My NVA amps are designed to be left on and have the power switch at the back. I only switch them off if I am away for some time.

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On 04/10/2019 at 10:59 PM, CN211276 said:

My NVA amps are designed to be left on and have the power switch at the back. I only switch them off if I am away for some time.

Hey Clive. How's it hanging .

 

I always switch my NVA amps (in fact the whole system) off at bed time and back on when i get home from work. Also if i am not at home however short that period, i always switch them off. 

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On 03/10/2019 at 10:10 AM, March Audio said:

I think what concerns me is that there is sometimes a lack of critical thinking in this hobby of audio electronics.  As mentioned earlier, an amp that changes its sound enough for a listener to notice due to temperature variations, is not actually a good design.  Its not thermally stable.  To me it puts amps that must be left on to obtain consistent sound quality in a different light; i.e. its not a good thing.

What a good explanation. Thanks for that. I'm going to use that as a topic starter at this years show. I never thought of it that way.

 

Now...what about 2/3/400 hr speaker burn-in?

 

Staying on topic, I have a tube amp and a heap of SS amps and phono pre and I turn them on prior to a listening session so they get about 5 minutes warm up and the tube one gets around ten.

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On 03/10/2019 at 10:10 AM, March Audio said:

I think what concerns me is that there is sometimes a lack of critical thinking in this hobby of audio electronics.  As mentioned earlier, an amp that changes its sound enough for a listener to notice due to temperature variations, is not actually a good design.  Its not thermally stable.  To me it puts amps that must be left on to obtain consistent sound quality in a different light; i.e. its not a good thing.

Yeah,right. Wrong. Always easy for someone to come up with some dated scientific explanation to support their opinion. Sure, Caps wear out, everything wears out. Even you. When my Caps fail, I'll replace them.

Some Amps needs a warm up period. Fact. If you can't hear the difference, good for you. I can. Same with my cartridges. Ohh, don't be concerned.

Edited by Wimbo

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According to the guy that designs Dartzeel so should leave solid state amps on  in standby  mode 

 

that small volatage is enough to ensure maximum life expectancy of the caps

 

ive had many friends who left there solid state amps on in stand by and they still work fine 20- 30 years later 

 

i leave mine on in stand by and for class A amps I always have a fan blowing onto the amp during playback  - looks like **** though ha ha

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20 minutes ago, Kdjjdk Will said:

According to the guy that designs Dartzeel so should leave solid state amps on  in standby  mode 

 

that small volatage is enough to ensure maximum life expectancy of the caps

 

ive had many friends who left there solid state amps on in stand by and they still work fine 20- 30 years later 

 

i leave mine on in stand by and for class A amps I always have a fan blowing onto the amp during playback  - looks like **** though ha ha

The Definition of “standby”. Can be technically vary different from manufacturer to manufacture....

An Example:   The product I work on will have areas of the device with huge power consumption for heating are switched off.....  while some competitors will turned the display off to give the impression that it’s on standby.  This includes on/off switches too, some competitors on/off switch will just turn the display off, but the device is very much on full power consuming electricity,  where the product I work on has  a DPDT switch that isolated the mains. 

Nowdays to have the accredited green power logo,  it’s changed all this ,  clients requesting to turned the standby timer off is now illegal in some countries,  they now have set them to turn to standby after 240mins Max.   There’s no pleasing everyone, even if a product has a start up of 30sec some will want you to turned that off so there is no wait time,  and this is requested by MPs from Dept of Environmental and Resources!!!!! 

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1 hour ago, Wimbo said:

 

Some Amps needs a warm up period. Fact. If you can't hear the difference, good for you. I can. Same with my cartridges. Ohh, don't be concerned.

 

 

:thumb:  You are spot on, W!  :)

 

(I won't bother to comment on what Alan M wrote.)

 

Andy

 

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On 04/10/2019 at 8:00 PM, ChucknBob said:

I leave mine on all the time. But it gets used daily, so would have to turn ON and OFF each day. I believe thermal degradation (repeated heat-up-cool down) of components shortens their life.

The only reasons to turn OFF are: 1) lengthen the life of electrolytic caps 2) cost of electricity.

 

You seem to be disagreeing with yourself, CnF??  :lol:

 

I would agree that 'thermal degradation' shortens cap life.  But what that means (to me, anyway) is that caps degrade, the hotter they get.  :)

 

However, switching caps on and off - compared to keeping them on for long periods of time - probably shortens  the life of a cap.  This is not due to temperature but to voltage stress (the cap has a voltage across it ... then it doesn't ... then it does ... etc.).

 

Andy

 

Edited by andyr

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