Amplifier Starvation


Just had an electriction come by to give me an estimate on a dedicated 20 amp line to my music room.   Because of the room's location, it creates a major installation PITA, and so I we decided to wait until my roof is replaced for a more direct and less invasive installation at that time.  In the meantime, my fears were comfirmed.   My room is wired with 14 gauge.  I kinda knew this already,  but now that it was confirmed today, it kinda bothers me a little more. Ha ha. I can't help but think how much fidelity is lost because of the bottle neck of the AC delivery to my power amp.  I was hoping that he would tell me I was wrong and that the room was wired with 12 gauge and I could sleep a little better tonight.  No dice.  😁 The elctrician told me that he felt that it wasn't such a big deal, and that as long as the equipment was receiving proper voltage, I should be just fine, even with the 14 gauge.  He said I should be more concerned with the motor load in the house and any hash it creates on the line being more detrimental to the sound than the 14 gauge.  Maybe with my class D arc ds450, it's not as big of a concern than someone with a big hunkering pass labs.  Who knows.   Still bummed I wasn't able to get instant gratification today.  Anyone that has gone from 14 to 12 chime in? Is it really not worth agonizing over, as long as the circuit is dedicated already? 
audiolover718
Electrician is right... but if you are worried, add a voltage monitor such as a power conditioner. It doesn't have to be on the amp if you are worried, so long as you can "see" the voltage while listening to music. What matters is the voltage dropping as current flows.

That voltage droop is a function of the gauge, distance from transformer, the transfomer itself, AND the current being drawn. If you draw no current, there is no droop.

Best,

E
Don’t have your amp and components on the same breaker as high-current household appliances. There will still be possible noise from other lines in the circuit panel, but even out the current-draw in your panel between the 2 legs (phase A and B).
With your amp you have no worries.
 Thanks guys for your responses.  I was worried with a 550wpc amp that it would be a problem.  I guess being a class D it ameliorates the situation.  

On on another note, I decided to give the system a little TLC.  I've had my proac D48r for about 5 months now and it's safe to say they are pretty much broken in.... they are the most engaging speakers I've ever owned.   I love their sound.  I cleaned and conditioned every.single.connection from outlet to speaker.  The result was astounding. 

Now im not new to system tune ups like this, but today it was extra special.   The system sounds so pure, so true and transparent, that the 14 gauge in the wall issue melted away as I was rewarded with the most amazing listening session of Gideon Kremer's 8 seasons. What a delight.  Lifelike transients and dynamics, subtleties and shadings abundant.  These speakers may be my last.  It's obvious that the system needs a connection cleanup every 6 months months. But I'm going to bed happy! 🙃
...the 14 gauge in the wall melted away ...

This statement concerned me, but I'm glad I read it wrong.
If you are going to the trouble to add a dedicated circuit, go ahead and use 10 guage wire and a 30 amp breaker. You will never be sorry. On a 20 amp circuit with only one light and my system, when the four amps (2 dual monos; I run mains and subs on matching amps and preamps.), all occasionally draw power at the same time, and the light dims for an instant. My amps only have one chip per channel. It regulates the power supply. Occasionally, I believe, all four channels of transformer filling current fill a total of 16 giant caps, which causes the flicker. It does not happen now that I ran the 30 amp wiring. Remember, a 20 amp circuit is really only 15, because 75% is what triggers the breaker. If you look at extension cord packaging, the ratings for 14 guage and 12 guage are 13 (Legally rounded from 12.5) and 15 amps, or 75%. My amp transformers are 500 watts x 4. Add in a good sized power supply for the two preamps and the 25 pound cd player (big transformer), then say we have 2200 watts divided by 110 volts and we have a possible draw of 20 amps, one third more rhan a 20 amp circuit is designed for. The chips regulate cap filling, so it does not blow breakers at turn on.

Agree with the 10 ga idea.    If you're gonna overkill,  don't fiddle around

"It's obvious that the system needs a connection cleanup every 6 months."

Could you please elaborate what this process entails?

danvignau
If you are going to the trouble to add a dedicated circuit, go ahead and use 10 guage wire and a 30 amp breaker. You will never be sorry.
I agree that 10 ga. wire is a good idea, but a 30A breaker should only be used if the receptacle itself is also rated at 30A. But they have a different plug configuration than 15A and 20A receptacles, so it's really not a practical solution, unless you want to ignore the NEC and just use 20A receptacles.