I don't think the install base of amps that draw that much current is large enough to really make that much of an impact. We just need to make more power plants and keep those tree hugin hippies out of my audio.
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I now shut down both of our systems, when they are not in use, as well as the computer (at night). We have also dug out the old "Mickey Mouse" and "Bart Simpson" night lights to be used in the place of leaving the kitchen lights on while we sleep. Both systems lack a little clarity (as when they were left on 7/24), but still sound good. Other than energy conservation I also did this as a defensive move in the event that there is a blackout and return of power when I am either away or asleep. All of the equipment is on surge protectors, but you never know. I live in the LA area and my wife said that our electric power billing increased from $20/MO to $80/MO just recently due to the rate hike. I will be incorporating Neuance shelving and new PC's into the system in the next month and for this will leave all of the digital gear powered up 7/24 as it will allow me to better judge the changes. Instead of laying blame as to who created this situation (certainly there is a real shortage to some extent) I feel that this negative energy would be better used to help solve the problem at hand. It will also be necessary to ascertain how much of the shortage is actual and how much of it is being "manufactured" for personal gain, in order to truly solve the problem and keep rates affordable for the majority of power consumers. I guess that a study such as this would lay some blame in itself, but it would be a necessary step in order to move forward.
I drive one of the biggest SUVs, and leave some of my audio components run 24 / 7. My electric bill is 25% less than the neighbors who use more energy to keep their house warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer than mine. I work a short distance from home (and at home when possible), thus making less than 1 stop a month at the gas station. How many people consume less than 30 gallons of gas a month on average?? I would bet not many...
I think than categorizing people that have certain things is the wrong approach. Take a look at where the problems are... Shipping due to the .com rage eats more fuel than if people drive to stores. Old junker cars polute more than my SUV. I could go on and on, but I have better things to do...
Hug the trees!!!
We all need to do our part to conserve energy. Instead of comparing yourself to other people to justify your own waste, do what you can to change. Fuel inefficient cars are wasteful, air conditioning is wasteful, and yes, leaving on high power consuming items like power amps to achieve better sound or to avoid a 1 hour warm up time is wasteful. Buying speakers manufactured with rare woods also impacts negatively on the environment. I'm not saying you shouldn't leave your amp on if it makes a difference to you,
I own a ridiculous amp (BAT VK-500). But we all need to identify ways that we as individuals can reduce our consumption of non-replenished resources. Americans are the most wasteful in the world because we can afford to be for now. Unfortunately, we are doomed to wait until we feel or our children feel the unfortunate consequences of our overconsumption before we change our ways.
I can identify with several of the comments made above: Elizabeth; I believe in ZPG too, and we have just one child-- a great daughter; J-K, I really do use less than 30 gallons of gas a month, but my PU is kind of a gas hog.
Although I do have two 300 wpc amps, they drop to 130 wpc standby after not getting a signal for 10 minutes-- a nice feature, and I turn them off at night. But on balance, I think there really are so few audiophiles with big power hungry amps that the issue is insignificant. There may be 100 million cheap 100 wpc stereo receivers in this country that use about 98% of the stereo system power used. How many people have big amps? Like many environmentally conscious individuals, I save in some areas, but "splurge" when it comes to my "big rig"-- and this one doesn't have wheels. Flash, just in, my "little" DNA.5 sounds nearly as good as big rig-- may have to re-think this?? Cheers. Craig.
If you have big powerful amps that run hot, can't you just turn down the heat and curl up around the system and enjoy the music? I thought that engineers of good equipment would use high quality parts that are efficient. Doesn't unnecessary electricity cause RF problems? Wouldn't the less expensive "consumer" electronics that have 300 watts per channel be more inefficient? I know I'm not going to worry about leaving my 60 watt amp on overnight after my neighbour has been watching a DVD on a system that cost the same as my amp.
I live in an 40% solar heated home in northern New England. I use less than 350 kilowatt hrs. electricity per month. I drive a Volvo wagon instead of an suv because it gets 26 mpg. I also have a V8 pick-up because I sometimes tow a large trailer, but I use the car when I can. I leave my 200 watt amp on 24/7. Being energy conscious does not mean you need to give up anything. You need to make conscious desisions about your own energy use.
Zero population growth for Americans makes about as much sense as unilateral disarmament once did and for the same reasons. How many planned parenthood clinics do you think there are in Chiapas, or Dhaka or Kamina? What if the Salk's hadn't wanted any "brats"?
If driving a Volvo (there's a cliche) or turning off your stereo assuages your guilt about having more than others, that's fine, but it's pissing in the ocean. What really counts is not cursing the price increases at the gas station when you pass by and you Californians not voting for propositions that artificially hold down energy costs, curtailing production and putting you in the fix you're currently in. We're all hooked on cheap energy. We won't support fiscal policy that endangers it and we fought a war over it as recently as 1990. Kuwait wasn't about oil, it was about cheap oil.
I drive a 4 cylinder, curse when I see gas go up 25 cents and when I visit home I'm incensed to see a brown cloud above the town which used to have the bluest skies in America. Mea culpa.
A democracy almost by definition is incapable of making unselfish choices until the crunch comes, but the alternative, totalitarianism, is anathema, at least to me. Who will cast the first vote against socialised medicine, Medicare, Federal control of education and the myriad other social programs that have indebted us to the point where additional fiscal restraint on our consumption habits is impossible. Will you? And don't rejoin with the Defense budget nonsense; there's 350 million of us and 4 billion of them.