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Discussion Starter #1
Hello fellow shacksters,

My question is, should I leave my solid state amps on all the time or
should I power them off when not in use?
I have asked SVS and B&K, SVS said it didn't really matter that turning
the amp off and on is not going to extend the life of the amp. B&K said
pretty much the same thing.
 

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Elite Shackster , HTS Moderator Emeritus
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My outlaw amp draws a full half amp at idle, so I turn it off when not in use. I'm no enviro-nut, but I also wouldn't leave a 60W light on all the time either :)

That being said, my subwoofer amp, which I believe is digital (class D or class H or something like that) -- it hardly draws anything at idle (0.1 amps, which is well below the accuracy of the amp meter on the power conditioner).

I ended up getting a power conditioner that had configurable switching and trigger options (Panamax unit, forget the model #). So it triggers on the preamp and then switches on the outlet with the Outlaw and sub amp a few seconds later. Works well enough.
 

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Hello,
I always leave my amplifiers turned on unless going out of town for an extended duration. I realize this is wasteful, but have never had an amp fail me. I am knocking on wood while typing this.
Cheers,
JJ
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you,

Will turning a solid state amp off and on shorten it's life?
With the metal filliments expanding and contracting.
 

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Thank you,

Will turning a solid state amp off and on shorten it's life?
With the metal filliments expanding and contracting.
This depends on how many cycles you power it on and off, If you going to use it more than twice a day then leaving it on is better but it your system sits idol for a few days between each use its not going to hurt it to turn it off. Over night turning it off is better as well and wont harm it.
I usually leave it on once I turn it on until the end of the day.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you,

I always considered turning it off and on repeatedly was more harmful than leaving
it on, but didn't know for sure.
 

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All my kit is left in standby mode unless away for long periods of time, my sub is left on though all the time as it does not have a standy mode and that has been for the last 3 and a half years...:scratch:
 

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For subwoofers, I've generally always left them "On" all the time. My current amplifier for my speakers, however, is 12v trigger switched to turn on and off with my preamplifier/processor.
 

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In the broadcast studio world, I never turn anything off. Inrush currents will shorten the life of electronics. My lights will dim as much when I turn on my amp as they do when my heat-pump kicks on. That being said, in the consumer world, depending on the class of amps you have (as pointed out by a previous poster) doing so could significantly effect your power bill. I am trying to think of anything personally that I have seen fail in my house while it was operating...and I'm not coming up with anything. However, I don't have to go far back to think of the last time I turned something on and it died at that moment.

The only thing I am fairly conscious about shutting off are my LCD displays. I have never replaced the lamps in one, and I really have no desire to find out why my friends that have use 300 cuss words when telling me about it.

Jeff
 

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I have been turning off my Harman Kardon for 19 years and it's still working. I recall that the part that had a little problem on my Dynaco integrated amp is the ON/OFF switch. After many on/off operations over 17 years, it started to become loose.

OTOH, light bulbs fail at turn on but I would not keep the light on at all times.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I have been turning off my Harman Kardon for 19 years and it's still working. I recall that the part that had a little problem on my Dynaco integrated amp is the ON/OFF switch. After many on/off operations over 17 years, it started to become loose.





OTOH, light bulbs fail at turn on but I would not keep the light on at all times.
Compareing a light bulb to a solid state amp is an apple to oranges argument, sorry
 

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Hello,
This is always been a debated subject. I do know that most Professional Studios keep their amplifiers always powered. Also, some amplifier manufacturers put the power button on the back of the amplifier with the logic that they are always intended to be kept powered.

What I will say is the powering up of amplifiers is when they are subjected to the most stress. It is a personal decision and I just choose to always leave my amplifiers powered.
Cheers,
JJ
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Makeflat

Sorry, I think I misunderstood your counterpoint about inrush into a light bulb.
My apples to oranges comment is based on keeping my amps for as long as possible,
opposed to light bulbs that are made to wear out in a certain amount of time. I understand
that the the physics at start up for a light bulb and a amp are the same.
Thank you for your reply
Jeffrey
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Hello,
This is always been a debated subject. I do know that most Professional Studios keep their amplifiers always powered. Also, some amplifier manufacturers put the power button on the back of the amplifier with the logic that they are always intended to be kept powered.

What I will say is the powering up of amplifiers is when they are subjected to the most stress. It is a personal decision and I just choose to always leave my amplifiers powered.
Cheers,
JJ
Thanks, JJ
My electric company loves me too!
I try to offset this by being green in other way's.
Jeffrey
 

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Another negative to leaving an amp on when unattended is if you have a power serge or brownout sometimes this an cause a failure in the amp particularly if you live in an area where this is common. This is why a good surge suppressor is important but it wont protect against a brownout or complete power failure. If the amp is off when it happens there wold be no damage done.

Lots to consider and many different views.
 

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Makeflat

Sorry, I think I misunderstood your counterpoint about inrush into a light bulb.
My apples to oranges comment is based on keeping my amps for as long as possible,
opposed to light bulbs that are made to ware out in a certain amount of time. I understand
that the the physics at start up for a light bulb and a amp are the same.
Thank you for your reply
Jeffrey
Actually, I think you are right about "apples and oranges". Perhaps it's like "diamond and sand" because of cost differences. While leaving an amp on may prolong its life, there is a break-even point below which it may be cheaper to turn off the amp. For example,

Watts when idle = 30 W = .03 kW
Daily idle time = 20 hrs (4 hrs use assumed)
Annual energy cost @.09/kWh = .030 x 20 x 365 x .08 = $17.52 /yr.
Cost of idle energy in 15 yrs = $262.80
(A caveat is that everyone is going to have different idle time, idle watts, and energy cost.)

For an amp costing $200, one would want to turn off the amp during idle time. OTOH for an amp costing $1500, perhaps one may want to leave it on at all times. For those choosing to "go green', then it's a different situation. Yeah, it's an individual choice.
 

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I now of many people who always switch off there equipment at night after using it but then I also know a lot of people who always leave them on, it will always be a split of votes and it is a common question that pops up from time to time...I have given my opinion but I choose to leave mine on and drive less to save the environment...:huh:
 
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