Home Wiring Improvements For Better Quality Sound
People are flocking to buy high-end plug strips and thousand dollar a.c. cables and may still have problems that are easy to address, and may result in a marked improvement in entertainment system performance.
The place to start is at the point where the electrical service enters the building. Very often, varying amperages have heated up the primary conductors, and these have changed shape inside the screwed-down compression connectors, enough so as to introduce a slightly higher resistance, which may result in a loose connection, at
only certain times and under certain loads.
This job is for a qualified electrician.
The idea is to loosen the compression connectors on the primary cables, to burnish their copper finish with Scotch Brite, to add a dielectric grease such as No-Ox-Id "A" (Special), and to reclamp the wires in their compression connectors with plenty of torque so as to firmly seat the cables and to ensure solid connections.
The next place to work on is the circuit breaker panelboard distribution cabinet. You will find circuit breakers with corroded spring-clamp attachments, etcetera, being fed from buss bars in the cabinet. All these need to have
their mounting connections taken loose, cleaned, greased and refitted.
Next, the White, or a.c. return legs. All these (sometimes referred to as the Neutral) conductors also suffer from heat-related expansion and contraction with subsequent buildup of corrosion. Same treatment as all the rest before: Loosen, clean, grease and re-attach firmly.
Once the panel board is done, move on to the convenience outlets. Question: Do your convenience outlets have screws clamping the wires, or are they all the "push-in" variety? Switch from push-in types to outlets with screws to eliminate a possible source of high resistance from corrosion.
This is all possible for much less money than thousands of dollars spent in high-end cabling. Eliminate the most common sources of interference before thinking about upgrading the hifi.
Many years ago, a customer called me in on a service call, telling me the data download at night was failing, and they were confused, because most electrical interference would happen during working hours. After three repeat calls, I attached a recording line monitor to the a.c. distribution panel primary wiring and left it recording all night. At 2:30 a.m., a chiller unit on the roof would kick in to defrost the tubes, automatically. This device was on a circuit where the neutral or return a.c. current wire, clamped in a buss bar screw-down attachment, was loose enough to cause a spike just when the chiller started up, and right smack dab in the middle of the data transmission to the accounting office.
From then on, whenever hearing complaints of squirrely power issues, the first step was a refit of all the electrical power clamped attachments, and ninety-nine percent of the problems were abated.