I have a Aleph 5 and have my music on in the house about at least 15 hours a week. About a year ago I installed a 20amp line from a secondary power line (pump house and horse barn only on this line). The monthly bill increased from $25 to $30 a month with my stereo now on the line. I don't leave the amp on when in use but I do leave the rest of the stereo on all the time. It only takes 1/2 to 1 hour for the amp to warm up and sound great.
Several threads have discussed the cost to run a 'class A' amp all the time. The consensus was from $5 to $15 in electricity (depending on size, and rates) to run a class A amp all the time (24/7).
My Prior amp a Forte'4a cost $10.00 a month (back in the mid 2005 etc) to rune 24/7.
So does my current amp, though rates have almost doubled in the last two years.. the Bryston 4B-SST2 uses about $10 a month (in 2010 costs) to run 24/7
Just check the standby watts pulled. Some decent amps pull about 100 watts in standby which is equivalent to a light bulb.
well THAT makes me feel a lot better. thanx guys!
The question also becomes: What to do with the heat from it in the summer if you are running it 24/7?
The heat bothered me in Summer, as my Forte' 4a was a small space heater. Then I would be using more air conditioning to cool off the apt because the amp was on! So in the Summer I did turn it off when not in use.
When I first got my Pass amps, I left them on all the time. The bill promptly went through the roof. When not in use now, I promptly turn them off. Waaay too expensive to leave on all the time.
you would have to be an idiot to leave class A amps on 24/7. I know none of us are guilty of (being) that on this forum, so there should be no issue with affording to run the Pass :)
Don't know about straight class A, but on Pass class A/B amps (e.g., X150.5 etc) there is a standby switch. On standby, which is all the time that you're not using the amp, the current draw is "only a few watts", as advised by Pass . Cost is minimal.
I own the XA160.5's. They are fully powered up about 4 hours/day or 100 hours a month. My bill went up about 25% or $20 per month. I consider this a small price for the sonic benefits of class A amplification.
How do you notice any difference in the cost, with electricity bills rising so fast anyway? At least in the UK, utility bills seem to rise every month. Many amps draw a lot of juice, particularly tube amps. My Tube SET draws 250 watts at rest. I think it is just the price you have to pay for good sound. If you worry about it, get a 70watt Nad integrated.
I do think the idea of running Class A amps 24/7, is frankly insane, particularly with the increasing cost to the environment of accessing that energy, ask anyone living on the Gulf Coast at the moment. I used an Aleph 3 for a few years and found it got on song in about 30 minutes
They key to this question is do you leave them on 24 hours a day and 7 days a week?
I don't think saying "my electric bill went up xx%" is the best way to put it. If your bill was $20 and AP (After Pass) it's $40 then it went up 100%. If your bill was 200 and AP it's 220, then it only went up 10%.
Going with hard facts, my 100.5' monos draw 300 watts each (600 total) from the wall. Our electricity costs 13 cents per Kilowatt hour. 600 watts times 5 hours equals 3000 watts or 3 kilowatts, so it costs me 39 cents to run it 5 hours. "If" I did that every day for a month, it would cost me $12 a month. Worst case of leaving it on 24/7: 720 hrs in a month X 600 = 432000 watts or 432 kw which would cost me $56 a month. Some parts of the country could easily be twice that depending on how much you pay per kw hour.
The great thing about Nelsons newest amps is that their standby switch keeps the caps charged while only drawing a few watts. (figures to about 93 cents a month for me to leave them in standy the whole time). With the caps charged you only have to flip the switch and start listening. The warm up is painless. It sounds good right away, better after 30 minutes and best after an hour.
The Pass website shows the different wattage draws for their various amps. Pick one, find out how much you pay for electricity and do the math. To me it's worth it for the sound quality, and I don't think it's anti-green if you are smart about it and don't obsess about 24/7.
I seem to remember a thread where Ralph from Atmasphere mentioned that it takes a solid state amp a very long time to stabilize and provide the best sound possible;this being the case and seeing the math that Onemug just did it would seem to me not to be a expensive situation to leave them in a standby condition 24/7 if your amps are able.
I have the XA160.5 also, and while the spec is 600W each, I measure about 410W at idle and when running in class A. I suspect the higher power consumption spec includes overhead because the XA.5's can go into AB when they reach rated power, and will draw more during those peaks.
I assume specs for the X600.5 etc. are even more conservative, but I don't have one to check.
My Pass X350 pulls about 0.5kW at idle. We pay $0.09/kWh here, so about 4.5cents/hour to use. Our big screen, LCD TV consumes 0.25kW. (big TVs are power hogs) My wife has the TV on all day long, so it costs me much more to operate than my amp. I do not leave my amp on all the time simply because I would not get anything done around the house. The stereo pulls me in like a magnet. I leave the amp on over weekends sometimes in the winter. It sounds a little smoother after being on for 40 hours, I think.
If you don't want to run expensive class A amplifiers due to their electrical bill - then its right time to look into class D amplifiers. If you want expensive, with prestigeous name and very expensive then look at Mark Levinson #53.($50k).
If that is too expensive then look at Jeff Rowland which recently issued new A/B class amplifiers but with (financially) economical switching power supplies.
Alternatively, Spectron monos I have - use old fashion transformer based power supplies nut consume only 40 watts and sound not terribly bad too (somehow I survived ;---)