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Russ Andrews Hi-fi grade mains wiring & supersockets

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Building DIY' started by Tracey, Mar 16, 2004.

  1. Tracey

    Tracey
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    Has anyone wired their ring main using the Russ Andrews cable? I just wondered if it is worth doing or not. I'm not going to be able to test it because my hi-fi won't be connected until everything is fully wired so there's not really any way of knowing if it will sound better or not as I've never had my hi-fi set up at my house. I was also looking at the Supersockets and wondered what the advantaged were over the MK unswitched sockets? I am tempted to get one Supersocket then when everything is working I can test against an MK one to see if I've wasted my money or not!

    Oh and one more question, does decent quality aerial cable make a big difference over the standard Sky sateallite cable, or can I improve the sound and picture just by getting a decent quality QED or Ixos aerial interconnect?
     
  2. alexs2

    alexs2
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    All I'd say on the subject of RA mains cables is this....very expensive,especially if you're having a mains spur or ring installed,but on the strength of my experiences with just the cables,and those of a couple of people with ring mains wired with the stuff,well worth the money.

    Do bear in mind the overall cost though at £14 per foot of cable....an alternative is to use either a spur,or to simply use a mains block and leads from there to your gear.
    We've avoided going for the mains spur as yet,simply because my wife can't decide whether she wants to move or not,and there's no way I'd invest that on cabling for someone else to inherit!

    As far as sockets go,quite honestly,the unswitched standard MK's are excellent.
     
  3. Tracey

    Tracey
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    hmmm, I might have to ask how much cable we would need (electrics isn't my department, I just spend the money). Am I correct in thinking I would need a length of wire from the fuse box to each double socket? If that is the case I could limit it to just two double sockets, then I could use those for my tv and sat box and my DVD player and processor. I'd probably need about 30 - 40ft. I'm tempted as I don't intend to move for a long time, but as you say I wouldn't want to spend all the money for someone else!
     
  4. alexs2

    alexs2
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    A spur will amount to the distance from your consumer unit to your gear,but a ring will be considerably longer,and although better,may be less useful than the spur option.
    Either way,install as many sockets as you are ever likely to use,bearing in mind the overall power loading.
    Given the quality of the amps you're using,it should be well worth the cost.
     
  5. Tracey

    Tracey
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    Just discussed it with my other half, he thinks at a rough guess we may need about 98ft! That may be well over the top I'll measure up tonight, but, I notice RA sell a mains cable for £7 per foot which may be worth considering, I could stretch to £500 or a bit more but I really can't afford to spend £1.5k on it, or more to the point I wouldn't be allowed!! I didn't dare tell him I just spent £770 on speaker cable, it's a good job I'm in charge of our finances :rotfl:
     
  6. alexs2

    alexs2
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    The £7/foot Kimber cable is basically a low current rated cable,and may not suit the needs of your system(certainly wouldn't suit mine with Krells drawing well over 15A),so do be careful with the rating of the cable you use...it may be worth giving RA a call and discussing your requirements,as I've always found them to be very helpful,and they won't simply recommend the most expensive option either.
     
  7. alexs2

    alexs2
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    An alternative that may be worth considering is to use something like an Isotek substation for your low level components,and buy a set of really good power leads for the amp...I use Kimber high current leads for my Krells,although the XLO and Nordost power cables are also excellent,and Kimber have also introduced the Palladian cables which I haven't tried yet,but are supposed to be excellent.
     
  8. Tracey

    Tracey
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    Hi, thanks for all your help, if the £14 cable is the only one that is suitable then I'll have to forget about that idea, it's just too expensive especially as I need to get my plasma next year. I think I'll just be content with having a seperate ring main and using decent sockets, and I can gradually upgrade all my power cords.

    Thanks again,
    Tracey
     
  9. alexs2

    alexs2
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    No problem....the next best thing is to use decent quality mains cable for the ring,and a separate consumer unit for the AV system.

    You may find the following link useful
    http://www.britishaudio.co.uk/product.htm#benduncan

    There was a very useful series of articles in HiFiNews a couple of years back on this.
     
  10. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes
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    I have a 'significant' quantity of RA mains products but when I did the electrics for my new AV room I did NOT use RA cables. There was no need. You may be surprized at the quality you can achieve with a new box and high current cable :)
     
  11. Tracey

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    Is there anywhere else that sells high current cable at half the price? I just can't afford more than about £500 and that's pushing it.
     
  12. Galaxy

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    I am not totally into this mains stuff, but have you tried or even considered the shielded mains cable available from RS Components?

    Best regards David
     
  13. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes
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    Don't forget these 'exotic' like shielded cables (emf) and woven cables (rfi) are only necessay if you have problems. Do you?
     
  14. themadhippy

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    why not steel wire aurmour
     
  15. Tracey

    Tracey
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    Well, the whole house has been completely re-wired, new fuse box and a sperate ring main for the hi-fi, all components will plug straight into MK wall sockets. I don't know if I have a problem as I haven't got any of my gear round there yet. But, my Mum's electrics are terrible so if it sounds ok there I'm hoping for an improvement when I move it all.

    I'm sure it will sound fanatastic and when I mentioned about re-wiring last night it was met with a less than enthusiastic response which I can't repeat on here :rotfl:

    Thanks to everyone for the advice though, maybe when I win the lottery and want to re-wire my dedicated home cinema room I'll go for it.
     
  16. Nimby

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    Tracey,

    There is endless discussion on the Naim hifi forum on mains spurs. Not ring mains as such. 6mm^2 spurs and on upwards are recommended. There is also some discussion on suitable contact breakers known for their excellent affect on sound quality. You could do a search on that forum for mains spurs. These chaps are very serious about their mains quality.

    Unfortunately my own interest in that direction was simply running a single 6mm^2 spur direct to a row of sockets behind my system. Otherwise I could give you chapter and verse. Just not my area of interest I'm afraid.

    Without knowing anything about Russ Andres cabling I would suggest that you investigate heavy standard cables to your system before investing in the fancy stuff. I know that some of Russ Andrews claims are not held in the highest esteem everywhere by everybody.

    Regards
    Nimby :)
     
  17. eviljohn2

    eviljohn2
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    To give you an idea about cables, nip down to your local DIY superstore and have a look at the cables they've got there. There are some REALLY big chunky cables available for not much money!
     
  18. avanzato

    avanzato
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    There are 3 online electrical factors that I know of Screwfix, TLC and QVS you could check for price comparisons.

    25m of 10mm T&E cable for instance is only about £30-£40 so that'll give some idea of the profit margins RA have. If you're a patient person you could even buy the individually coloured cables separately and plait them together into Russ Andrews 'alike' ones.
     
  19. Nimby

    Nimby
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    I should have mentioned that when you run a mains cable direct to your equipment position it is know known as a "dedicated spur". Or "dedicated mains spur". Using the right words will help you do an online search.

    Nimby
     
  20. avanzato

    avanzato
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    I think a Spur is when you take the new feed off an existing radial or ring circuit and the spur should really only have one socket on it. If you're taking the HiFi circuit from it's own breaker in the consumer unit then it will be a dedicated Radial (if the cables end at the last socket) or a Ring (if they return to the breaker) circuit.

    Tracey you could try unswitched sockets and then a small consumer unit just for the hifi ring main. Other than doing that I can't see the need for fancy cable.

    I'm not a Pro so I'm happy to be put right on any errors I've made.

    BTW DIYnot is a good site for info on electrics.
     
  21. Tracey

    Tracey
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    The cables return to the breaker socket so I guess that's a ring? thanks for all the advice, I know about TLC and Screwfix my credit card bill is full of transactions for them!! I do know that we used extra thick cable to re-wire the house but I'll have a quick look to see if there is anything better and maybe just re-wire the bit for the hi-fi. To be honest I've left it a bit late to start thinking about this, if we do re-wire it's just another unnecessary job to delay me being able to move in and enjoy my new equipment.
     

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