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Installing DEDICATED power line to 2 channel system


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Hi....... would love some advice / thoughts about installing a dedicated line from outside electrical box , then under the house and finally to a wall socket in audio room ( please note, electrician will do the wiring )

 

From what I've read so far this seems to be the basics:  

 

- 20A at the box ( some recommend to have its own circuit breaker ...... necessary ?

 

- 10, 12 or 14 gauge wire.   Am thinking of using DH Labs ENCORE 14g  bulk wire at about $25 a meter........ hoping this would give much better results than standard house wire..... any experiences here ?   ( run would be 15 metres)

 

- Good quality double power outlet like Furutech GTX -d 20A  or PS Audio Power Port classic etc

 

Equipment: Really only 1 power hungry Musical Fidelity Trivista 300W which I will plug directly into the wall socket ,   a REL  S 510 sub ,   plus a DAC, a Streamer plugged into an ISOTEk power board     ....    then Yamaha 1000 which are pretty efficient.

 

Do you think I will get some good sonic improvement with this ? Would really appreciate any suggestions and experiences gained by the Stereonet crew.

 

 

 

 

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You know, from the moment I started thinking of nonsense accessories like that as jewellery instead of componentry, I don't feel so angered. If only they were more honest about that and the market kne

I had a separate dedicated circuit installed.  The cable was  http://www.gigawatt.eu/produkt/in-wall-cable-gigawatt-lc-y-mk3-3x4/   The electrician thought I was mad because of the cost

To me “hum or buzzing or fluttering” through the speakers when the system is paused has nothing whatsoever to do with noise floor.  It is much more subtle.  Noise floor is about resonance or interfere

Plenty of other threads on this here. 

 

Those outlets are illegal to install. Check that the intended cable is also certified for Australian use but your electrician if any good, will check both of these. 

 

An Australian 10a outlet can safely provide 2400w. P=VI 

 

Would suggest listening to powerboards first at a store or getting an in home demo. 

 

I believe in a dedicated circuit even if no audible improvement, it shouldn't ever do any harm and is relatively cheap to do especially if easy access under the house as it sounds you have and if capacity remains in your board.

 

*I am a licenced electrician*

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I have a sparky coming tomorrow to wire up  man cave number 2. I'll show him your post and see what he says. He wired up man cave number one on a separate circuit.

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1 hour ago, mfforever said:

Am thinking of using DH Labs ENCORE 14g  bulk wire at about $25 a meter........ hoping this would give much better results than standard house wire..... any experiences here ?   ( run would be 15 metres)

I had a separate dedicated circuit installed.  The cable was 

http://www.gigawatt.eu/produkt/in-wall-cable-gigawatt-lc-y-mk3-3x4/

 

The electrician thought I was mad because of the cost of the cable.  I am happy as I perceived a benefit.  Interestingly the voltage was slightly higher than on the previous circuit.

 

I also had a Gigawatt circuit breaker installed at the switchboard.

http://www.gigawatt.eu/produkt/g-16a-power-grid-overcurrent-protection-switch/

 

All sockets on the circuit are Australian.

John

 

 

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Hi Luc ....., that would be fantastic. Did you notice any sonic improvement in Man cave 1 when he put it on a separate circuit ?

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Thanks John ......   great advice, especially being Australian compliant.   Really glad you could hear an improvement..... it makes the cost and effort worthwhile.

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Someone whom I know well had a dedicated line put in just for the stereo.  He had an old house with old wiring. Found no difference.

 

Same person heard differences with better power cords. And I ended up with the same power cords. 

 

@mfforever, anything to do with power, conditioning, filters etc. Is a contentious subject. Some people found improvements, others dispute it.  Only way is to try for yourself....

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So true, Snoopy .......    sonic improvements are sometimes pretty elusive, but it doesn't seem to stop us chasing them nevertheless. I'll tackle this project slowly, with as much information up front to improve my chances.

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3 hours ago, Assisi said:

I also had a Gigawatt circuit breaker installed at the switchboard.

http://www.gigawatt.eu/produkt/g-16a-power-grid-overcurrent-protection-switch/

 

Good idea to get a decent switchboard circuit breaker installed at the same time a dedicated power line is being installed.

 

I like SurgeX stuff:

 

https://avaustralia.com.au/surgex-advanced-sxn1230-branch-circuit-surge-eliminator/

 

ZeroSurge, SurgeX and BrickWall all use the same series-mode protection system. All use the patented ZeroSurge technology.

 

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On 21/01/2021 at 12:47 PM, mfforever said:

Thanks, Rand .......   I have definitely added a circuit breaker to my "must install " list

 

Please check with your local safety regulatory body. That Gigawatt unit, for instance, is not approved for use in Victoria. Just use a normal RCBO for safety's sake and if you want the last word in compliant sockets, Clipsal 56.

 

Lots of choices in wire(I'd use ESD) though you'll be unlikely to find more than 4mm in solid core if that matters to you.

 

If you want 'last word's setup, a balanced isolation transformer on a separate earth with its own protection is possible. As per most music studios. You can pay silly money for this or call Airlink and get something studio quality at a reasonable price, or have a good sparky make it from parts.

 

I'd drop two circuits as the cost is stuff all different and only condition one of them - then you can always A/B.

 

And get your sparkle to assemble some cables for you whilst there.

Edited by rmpfyf
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4 minutes ago, rmpfyf said:

Please check with your local safety regulatory body. That Gigawatt unit, for instance, is not approved for use in Victoria. Just use a normal RCBO for safety's sake and if you want the last word in compliant sockets, Clipsal 56.

 

 

This!!

 

I had a dedicated circuit put in - nothing special cable wise except for using a mains supply cable as used in hospitals (locally).

Then used high quality switch board filtering/circuit breaker, but ensured it was Electrical compliant for Victoria. Why anyone would run the risk of losing everything and having zero insurance cover is beyond me. Insurance assessors are trained to look for a way out, and some of the products being used are laughing into the hands of the insurance companies.

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On 20/01/2021 at 7:18 PM, mfforever said:

Do you think I will get some good sonic improvement with this ? Would really appreciate any suggestions and experiences gained by the Stereonet crew

Check your earth stake and have an Electrician check the main switchboard Mutiple Earth Neutral. Otherwise upgrading the switchboard, re stripping all the terminations and re doing can return results if there are any with regard to noisy loose terminations. If you are experiencing issues like "being able to hear things through the stereo, like the fridge switching on and off" eliminate these faulty devices.

 

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43 minutes ago, Dirkgerman said:

Otherwise upgrading the switchboard, re stripping all the terminations and re doing can return results if there are any with regard to noisy loose terminations.

 

Often not looked at and very sage advice.

 

Also a telling difference between a sparkie and a great sparkie.

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50 minutes ago, rmpfyf said:

sparkie

:) 

My idea of a "Dedicated Power Line" differs from most. Wink, wink nudge, nudge :) BUT, well outside the handbrakes scope of cost in embedment at the premises. 

 

solar Tasmania.jpg

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There is no reason you can't have your electrician install a higher current outlet with the appropriate wiring and breaker. I had 3 separate outlets installed just for my hifi, using 2x 20A outlets and 1x 10A. There are standards for increasingly large outlets but they didn't really take off much in Australia because we have 240V we rarely need higher currents for residential usage. I have seen 15 and 20A outlets often, but never the larger ones. They're designed to be backward compatible so you can plug any 10A plug into a 15 or above, but not the other way around.

 

800px-Australian_mains_socket_styles_for

 

I did not find it caused an audible difference for what it's worth, but introduced earth loops if I put the power amp on a different line to the preamp (this actually makes sense but I wasn't thinking at the time) so in the end I use just one of the 20A outlets that was put in for all the gear. That said, everything runs through the one 3.5kVA power conditioner now so I would have had to use the one outlet anyway. Ultimately the only advantage to me of dedicated lines was not powering any other items off the same lines and avoiding tripping the breaker because I ran too many things at the same time.

Edited by Ittaku
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44 minutes ago, Ittaku said:

introduced earth loops if I put the power amp on a different line to the preamp (this actually makes sense but I wasn't thinking at the time

 

Definitely! I learned this the hard way just by having my ceiling mounted projector on a different circuit to the rest of the AV system. The link between the two circuits was of course the HDMI cable, and I tore my hair out tracking it down before the lightbulb moment!

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mmmmmmmm ....... All the above responses are why I love this Forum  ( experience and knowledge are potent forces )  Some new observations on my dedicated line journey ....

 

- being Australian compliant in regards to insurance is starting to look more attractive....  

- Dirkgerman's set up is absolutely amazing ( but beyond me .......  I think he is off -selling beautiful clean power to the rest of the State rather than just domestic use )

- a great sparkie worth their weight in gold

- as in all things audio, you can spend time and money and have no guarantee of sonic improvement.

 

When I finally get this done, will post my thoughts on sonic improvement...... thanks for all the input.

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25 minutes ago, Marc said:

 

Definitely! I learned this the hard way just by having my ceiling mounted projector on a different circuit to the rest of the AV system. The link between the two circuits was of course the HDMI cable, and I tore my hair out tracking it down before the lightbulb moment!

 By different circuit do you mean different phase? If installed correctly , equipment is functioning correctly you should have no issues running equipment on multiple circuits on the same phase. 

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1 hour ago, Ittaku said:

I did not find it caused an audible difference for what it's worth, but introduced earth loops if I put the power amp on a different line to the preamp (this actually makes sense but I wasn't thinking at the time)

 

47 minutes ago, Marc said:

Definitely! I learned this the hard way just by having my ceiling mounted projector on a different circuit to the rest of the AV system. The link between the two circuits was of course the HDMI cable, and I tore my hair out tracking it down before the lightbulb moment!

 

That's interesting.  As a result of experiments I had done in my previous house (replacing 1x 20a circuit for hifi with 1x 20a for digital components and 1x 20a for analogue components), when the current house was built, I had 13x 20a circuits put in, in the listening room (all on the same dedicated phase).  So basically, 1 circuit per component.

 

I don't experience any earth loop problems.

 

Andy

 

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40 minutes ago, Jones99 said:

 By different circuit do you mean different phase? If installed correctly , equipment is functioning correctly you should have no issues running equipment on multiple circuits on the same phase. 

 

Probably getting beyond my electrical knowledge now, but I don't believe so. Single phase here?

100% tested and repeatable - as soon as projector power point was moved from a normal household circuit, onto my dedicated circuit, hum disappeared. Ground loop resolved.

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1 hour ago, andyr said:

That's interesting.  As a result of experiments I had done in my previous house (replacing 1x 20a circuit for hifi with 1x 20a for digital components and 1x 20a for analogue components), when the current house was built, I had 13x 20a circuits put in, in the listening room (all on the same dedicated phase).  So basically, 1 circuit per component.

 

I don't experience any earth loop problems.

If it wasn't for my [garage job quality] preamp, it would not be a problem at all. The Supratek may sound fantastic, but it comes with thorns associated with the legacy of its build quality. There's a reason it costs 1/4 of what the ARC preamp that I was considering costs, even if sounds better. The ARC gear is built like an aircraft and none of these subtle issues seem to faze it.

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1 hour ago, Marc said:

 

Probably getting beyond my electrical knowledge now, but I don't believe so. Single phase here?

100% tested and repeatable - as soon as projector power point was moved from a normal household circuit, onto my dedicated circuit, hum disappeared. Ground loop resolved.

Definitely not challenging your experience and great to see you resolved it .

Having multiple dedicated circuits on the same same phase should not have these issues. While it is hard to generalize it is usually components on a particular circuits ,circuit installation or the way a component is designed  which causes these issues. So definitely plan your install/setup accordingly.

I have the luxury of a dedicated phase for my audio with nothing else on it which is going the extra mile......not sure if it achieved anything as hard to do a comparison but best to go over the top in my view.

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9 hours ago, Dirkgerman said:

:) 

My idea of a "Dedicated Power Line" differs from most. Wink, wink nudge, nudge :) BUT, well outside the handbrakes scope of cost in embedment at the premises. 

 

Victron? Good kid. 

 

I'm mulling over the likes of https://airlinktransformers.com/product/advanced-filter-balanced-power-supply-asf5120mp

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A dedicated power circuit from the switchboard to your hi fi equipment is not necessary.

Check the power consumption rating on the back of your gear and add it all up.

 General purpose outlets(GPO's) are rated at 10Amp so your good for 2400 watt @ 240 volt on a single outlet before a dedicated circuit is required .( W=V x I)

Most power circuits in new homes with 2.5mm2 TPS cable feeding the GPO's have 20amp circuit breakers protecting the cable and RCD's protecting you. 

You won't hear any difference on a dedicated circuit verses one which feeds other electrical appliances around the home. Dedicated circuits are only installed generally for single appliances that draw more than 10A such as an air con or stove.

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8 minutes ago, robbee said:

A dedicated power circuit from the switchboard to your hi fi equipment is not necessary.

Check the power consumption rating on the back of your gear and add it all up.

 General purpose outlets(GPO's) are rated at 10Amp so your good for 2400 watt @ 240 volt on a single outlet before a dedicated circuit is required .( W=V x I)

Most power circuits in new homes with 2.5mm2 TPS cable feeding the GPO's have 20amp circuit breakers protecting the cable and RCD's protecting you. 

You won't hear any difference on a dedicated circuit verses one which feeds other electrical appliances around the home. Dedicated circuits are only installed generally for single appliances that draw more than 10A such as an air con or stove.

Mine far exceeds 10A......hence the multiple circuits but dedicated circuits are more about removing other appliances/devices from circuits  than about loading.

As for seperate circuits making a difference tough one to prove ...for me and my system I think it has. 

 

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9 hours ago, Marc said:

 

Probably getting beyond my electrical knowledge now, but I don't believe so. Single phase here?

100% tested and repeatable - as soon as projector power point was moved from a normal household circuit, onto my dedicated circuit, hum disappeared. Ground loop resolved.

 

I have exactly the same experience in my music room with my projector..

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30 minutes ago, robbee said:

A dedicated power circuit from the switchboard to your hi fi equipment is not necessary.

Check the power consumption rating on the back of your gear and add it all up.

 

You won't hear any difference on a dedicated circuit verses one which feeds other electrical appliances around the home. 

 

Sorry - I totally disagree here.  With a dedicated line - you chop a lot of the electrical crud from lights and other things like switch mode power supplies to the computer, tv, fridge etc which are pollution city.

 

And yes - go big with your cable - it's all about current capability, not what you are drawing, rather but the instantaneous rise time for current demand.

 

I am about to get a sparkie to put a dedicated line into my room too.  I will be using 6mmsq orange circular to a Black Art 5000va balanced transformer, with a separate earth stake.  I am going to terminate it to a single 32A Clipsal 56 Series socket on the wall.  Why 32A?  By Law, I am only allowed one socket per 32A line.  This socket must also be switched.  Have you ever pulled a 10 or 15A switch from a standard power point apart?  The contact area is complete rubbish, absolutely miniscule!  The 32A one on the other hand, is about 6mm dia switching area.   the round pins for contact are around 6mm dia too, and the contact clench is far greater meaning better contact, better current capability and less heat.  From there into a diy 9 way board with no switches.

 

The only battle I have, is my original 1958 circuit board on the house isn't up to it.  I have to spend $1200 there to get it replaced before I can even start.  I might even need the SEC (or whatever they are called now) to run new mains from the street as my current capacity from the new switchboard might exceed the feed line from the street that I already have.

 

But I am still a couple of months away and keen to hear what happens here.  Things like that Gigawatt not being legal in Vic - gold!  A pity, but great to learn now.

 

Ahhh, ...but then I can have the capability to run some AC in there too!

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8 hours ago, Red MacKay said:

with a separate earth stake.

Tap onto the site earth stake is a better idea with your Iso Tx, keep all the main grounds common to one another.

I hope you know that what you suggest is a total, utter and overkill with regard to the 32A56 Series stuff. Good old ugly Clipsal double pole GPO is the go. BTW that miniscule contact will run a welder/kettle, so unless your stereo is operated in the +3Kw region miniscule would do nicely. Have a nice day Red.

 

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Yes, you are totally correct Dirk.  I do realise it is total overkill.

 

I'm curious what you say re the common earth, as this is all a bit of a mystery to me.

Can you elaborate any here?

 

The cost is absolute peanuts compared to the other money I have wasted on this hobby over the years.

Orange circ is like $5/m, Clipsal 56 outlet $100, plug, $100, inside switchbox $150, sparkie $400.  (all an estimate)

 

But as long as it is all to AUSNZ code, and all done by a registered sparkie that knows what he is doing, all good.

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Earlier this year I had a separate circuit run from the Switch Board to my system mainly because I needed additional sockets.  I decided to be serious with cable and used Gigawatt.  The interesting and surprising outcome is that the voltage on the Gigawatt is approx. 4 volts higher than the other circuits to other parts of the house.  Right now, the audio system is getting 230 volts and the computer that I am working on is getting approx. 226 volts.

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55 minutes ago, Red MacKay said:

the common earth

With a new switchboard, earth stake/conductor, new mains, new point of attachment + all the other outlandish stuff will keep a Sparky busy for more than a day., I would estimate a couple of grand easy, the chicken comes before the egg in this case.

 

A common ground will keep the earth potential resistances to one another lowest as possible in event of any fault. If you do not run a second multiple earth neutral on the secondary of the iso transformer I think you will find you "must use the site main earth link" via the regs. 

Keep thinking that if there is any current flowing down to earth, at the chassis of the iso tranny the last thing you want is a second earth stake as there may be gobs of resistance (dangerous potential voltages) between the 1, chassis, 2, main earth link/stake, 3, other earth stake.  Earth Star point in a power amplifier ring any bells, Red, similar theory here.  Not a good idea and never a done thing in field, from a Senior Sparky who has "done $hit" built many off grid power stations, EHV Switchyard earth mats and the like over 35 years. 

An example, you have seen this system personally and heard the results although you may have forgotten, was a couple of years ago.

An off grid 8 Kva Inverter, with literally an 8 Kva balanced iso transformer output main earth is derived from the main earth link within the switchboard 6mm2 in this case. It has 2 circuits, with 4mm2 conductor (A and E) to a dedicated sound lounge. It has it's own M.E.N. and main switchboard.

 

The second earth stake is not a good idea. If the circuit is over 50m long, then maybe it is.  RCBO double pole  protection on the iso tranny  output as a matter of coarse. 

 

Have fun the rabbit hole is deep although from what you say, you are down there already :) peace Mate.

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11 hours ago, Red MacKay said:

With a dedicated line - you chop a lot of the electrical crud from lights and other things like switch mode power supplies to the computer, tv, fridge etc which are pollution city.

 

How effective is it at doing this unless you put a power filter between the circuits?  They are all connected together with a very low impedance otherwise.  The thicker and bigger cable you run, the better they are connected, as I am seeing it.

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14 minutes ago, aussievintage said:

very low impedance

Sorry to jump in if I may,

Red is sort of correct, imagine on a single circuit, wired for low impedance by it's very nature a dirty old fridge is plugged into it with a pair of contacts in the thermostat that have worn out, the motor cap is leaking and lost it's Zzaaap a decade ago.  The stereo shares the same circuit and just so happens it is further down the parallel circuit.  Running a separate circuit may alleviate waveform distortion that the stereo equipment power supplies will see as the faulty appliance is then "further away" or on a higher impedance part of the distribution within the dwelling.  THe lesser the impedance to the supply the less distortion it will have, even in an arrangement with the highest resistance of any part of the circuity s 1 ohm.

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5 minutes ago, Dirkgerman said:

Sorry to jump in if I may,

Red is sort of correct, imagine on a single circuit, wired for low impedance by it's very nature a dirty old fridge is plugged into it with a pair of contacts in the thermostat that have worn out, the motor cap is leaking and lost it's Zzaaap a decade ago.  The stereo shares the same circuit and just so happens it is further down the parallel circuit.  Running a separate circuit may alleviate waveform distortion that the stereo equipment power supplies will see as the faulty appliance is then "further away" or on a higher impedance part of the distribution within the dwelling.  THe lesser the impedance to the supply the less distortion it will have, even in an arrangement with the highest resistance of any part of the circuity s 1 ohm.

 

I see what you are getting at.   

 

The best move however, for noisy switching and old caps,  has always been to fix the problem at the source.  Bypass the noise making devices with a good mains rated cap, as close to the source as possible.  One of the reasons is the noise, may cross over to other circuits purely due to proximity in the walls, which can't be avoided as they all have to end up back at the same distribution board. 

 

It does bring up another thing, if running a dedicated circuit, shield it well, and run it via as different a route as is possible.

 

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13 minutes ago, aussievintage said:

It does bring up another thing, if running a dedicated circuit, shield it well, and run it via as different a route as is possible.

I think that in my case the above was achieved.

 

The gigawatt is well shielded.  The cable had to go through the slab into the cellar across the cellar ceiling, outside through a vent pipe, then through 30cms of stone wall back into the house.

John

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13 hours ago, robbee said:

A dedicated power circuit from the switchboard to your hi fi equipment is not necessary.

Check the power consumption rating on the back of your gear and add it all up.

 General purpose outlets(GPO's) are rated at 10Amp so your good for 2400 watt @ 240 volt on a single outlet before a dedicated circuit is required .( W=V x I)

Most power circuits in new homes with 2.5mm2 TPS cable feeding the GPO's have 20amp circuit breakers protecting the cable and RCD's protecting you. 

You won't hear any difference on a dedicated circuit verses one which feeds other electrical appliances around the home. Dedicated circuits are only installed generally for single appliances that draw more than 10A such as an air con or stove.

 

It's got zero to do with circuit capacity, and everything to do with noise and interference. 

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2 minutes ago, Marc said:

 

It's got zero to do with circuit capacity, and everything to do with noise and interference. 

Yep l get it but if there's no noise or interference to start with then it's unnecessary to run a dedicated power circuit from the main switchboard. 

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4 hours ago, Dirkgerman said:

Tap onto the site earth stake is a better idea with your Iso Tx, keep all the main grounds common to one another.

 

Permissible under AS3000 to use a separate ground downstream of a trans, as you know, and as you suggest, context dependent as to whether or not it's best practice. I'm continually surprised the number of audiophools that get this far and then don't put RCBO's (or more) on the output because of some percieved noise issue with Clipsal/Hager/whatever.

 

13 hours ago, Red MacKay said:

The only battle I have, is my original 1958 circuit board on the house isn't up to it.  I have to spend $1200 there to get it replaced before I can even start.  I might even need the SEC (or whatever they are called now) to run new mains from the street as my current capacity from the new switchboard might exceed the feed line from the street that I already have.

 

Order it though your retailer - costs are then fixed depending on your DNSP (you can look up what's what on their website). If you really need to up your incoming and you're overhead reticulated, go three phase if you can. Cost is not so different and down the road you're covered for all sorts of hijinks. 

 

Whatever you end up doing for earth... you can have some fun and paralell 'em up, dig nicely and insert a bentonite slurry, etc. Your sparkie will take a Very Dim View of being asked to hammer in multiple stakes so if it's something you can do and they wire, so be it.

 

Black Art makes a beautiful trans though on prices... damn... Airlink's looking competitive (<50%), they have legitimate studio chops and they'll build to whatever configuration for safety's sake if you ask nicely. 

 

See what you can do for wire with ESD cable. Cost won't be so different and you get some nice shielding.

Just now, robbee said:

Yep l get it but if there's no noise or interference to start with then it's unnecessary to run a dedicated power circuit from the main switchboard. 

 

Really depends what's perceivable, whether you do, whether you want to protect against any in future and whether you just want it. 

 

In most cases from a pure demand perspective then no it's usually unecessary, though that's an incomplete thesis with regards to 'is it a good idea'. 

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