I like overkill on the conductor size from cb or fuse panel to receptacle, so it is 10/3 solid copper at my house. Really just do it for minimum ground circuit resistance and stereo system sourced electrical noise considerations, can't say that I could have heard a difference with more standard size wire, but overkill was only an additional $20.00 or so in my case. Other thing, I don't run the dedicated circuit parallel to any other wiring circuits, I imagine this is covered elsewhere, but just in case.
5 responses Add your response
Markphd, technically you CAN put 15 ampere outlets on a 20 ampere circuit, PROVIDED THAT IT'S NOT THE ONLY OUTLET ON THE CIRCUIT. If it is the only outlet, then it needs to advertise the full 20A capacity. Otherwise, the idea is that the load will most likely be distributed, and a 15A outlet will only fit devices that will pull less than 15A.
But for practical purposes, I agree, spend the extra 50 cents and get a 20A outlet. Better yet, spend the extra $2 and get a commercial-grade outlet that will hold plugs better.
Lots of good stuff in the archives as Rushton suggests. However, I can't resist saying a couple of things.
Regular Romex type of housewire is fine. It will be 12/2 for a 20 amp circuit. I have no idea what else you could possibly use anyway, at least if you want to comply with electrical code. The code is a little bit fussy about what type of wire gets buried in walls.
If you add a 20 amp circuit and 12 gauge wire, make sure that your outlets are rated for 20 amps. If you put 15 amp rated outlets on a 20 amp circuit, not only will you be in violation of code, but you will be creating a fire hazard. And your house insurance won't pay up if they find out about it.
Twenty amps is fine, although some people like to run heavier circuits. However, if you want to be careful about having enough power, you can do a simple calculation. Twenty amps times 120 volts = 2400 watts in total capacity. Reduce by 20% for safe capacity. Therefore, the safe capacity for a 20 amp circuit is 1920 watts. Now add up the wattage of everything that's going to be plugged into it. If you're under the safe capacity, you're fine. Farther under is better so that in music peaks, the current draw doesn't spike up above safe or total capacity.
Vermonter, a lot has been posted on Audiogon about this topic, but rather than just suggesting you do search on "dedicated lines" or "dedicated circuits," here's a link to one thread that has some good basic guidance:
If you were closer to Richmond, I could recommend a good electrician, but I can't help for Tidewater.
Good luck. This is well worth doing.