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wrighteous's picture
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: Jan 24 2012 - 3:05pm
Leave it On?

So my system can either be put in "standby" mode with the remote or fully turned off by pressing the buttons on the preamp, amp and CD player. The manuals only say that if I am not going to be listening to it for "a long time" then I should fully turn it off, otherwise leave it in "standby." 

Im just wondering: what is "a long time"? Should I be turning it fully off every night before I go to sleep? Or only when I am leaving town for a couple of days?

I have Rotel componenets,  RC-1550, RB-1072 and RCD-1072. I have even heard that solid state amplifiers SHOULD be left on for many days at a time and that their sound actually IMPROVES over that period of time being left on. Please help!

jsm59's picture
Last seen: 12 months 4 days ago
Joined: Jan 14 2012 - 1:29pm
RE: Leave it On?

How often do you use the system, every day, once a week? If you use it at least once per day or even once per week, it should be fine to leave it in stand-by. (You don't need to turn-off over-nights). Different people may/will have varying opinions as to the timeframe; I don't think there is a hard-and-fast answer.

Assuming you do use it at least once per week or so, you are on the right track when you said you probably only need to turn-it off completely when you won't use it for an extended time (I would say at least multiple weeks), or are gone. I would consider turning it off completely, and even unplugging it, whenever you go out of town, no matter the period, especially in spring/summer when their might be electrical storms (even if you have a surge suppressor).  I would also consider unplugging it, not just turning it off, when a lighting storm approaches even if you are home and even if you have a surge suppressor. This may be overly cautious, but why tempt fate.

As far as leaving a solid state amplifier on for many days improving sound, I don't think this refers to stand-by mode, but powering on the components(s) and leaving them on. When a component is new (even tube equipment), this helps break them in. Once broken in, sound quality can improve. If the components are already well broken in or older, you don't need to do this. Along with leaving the power on, new speakers can benefit from being played. A brand new system can benefit from not only being powered up but playing for hrs/days. 

Triplet Audio

Demondog's picture
Last seen: 7 months 1 week ago
Joined: Feb 22 2009 - 5:01pm
Power Off, or Power On?

I kind of suspect that the standby mode is just for convenience, for instance being able to turn the equipment on with a remote control. I also think manufacturer's recommendations to turn the power switch off when it's not going to be used for long periods, is to save electrical power.

These are just my own opinions though. I do switch the power off in my own equipment overnight, since it's easy enough to do. But see below.


My M&K powered subwoofers, which do not have power switches, have been on continuously since 1997. Just following the owners manual instructions. I really should put a switch in the line, if I ever get around to it. haha

BillB's picture
Last seen: 5 years 6 months ago
Joined: Aug 15 2007 - 2:04pm
being green vs being golden eared

I use the off switch each night, no good reason to waste electricity on the stereo when it's not being used.  However if I'm listening during the day or evening and think I'll be coming back to it later the same day, I leave it on, since there's a very slight improvement to the sound when the equipment is fully warmed up.

bjb's picture
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: Feb 18 2012 - 8:03am

1) Electrolytic capacitors have a finite run life.  Then again, they also have a shelf life.   Sourcing and replacing filter caps is a pain.

2) Most audio equipment doesn't have much if any overvoltage protection, so you're increasing your chances of taking a surge if you don't have a whole house surge supressor.   Surge protection power strips are junk.

I just replaced a 100V rectifier diode in my old MAC 1900 on what I think (I should have measured) was an 80V peak-to-peak secondary---barely de-rated for voltage.  I would have spent the extra nickel on a 1KV diode to replace it but I fear the idea was that the rectifier would fail short and blow a fuse to protect everything downstream of it!  

I turn it off now when it's not in use.  

jgossman's picture
Last seen: 10 months 1 week ago
Joined: Aug 18 2011 - 6:21am
Hardly ever

If you have a class A tube amp turn it off.  Otherwise leave it on. Caps take minutes to fully charge but days to "form", that is lose residual internal resistance and therefore charge and discharge faster.  The bigger the filter caps, the better the sound from leaving it on.  It doesn't use much energy.


Good luck.

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