Dedicated spur: power board v double switchless socket

Hi all,
I have a dedicated spur for my naim 552/500 which feeds a double switchless socket. I was wondering if anyone has done an extensive comparison of simply plugging the two powerlines into the double socket (which is what I have been doing) versus using a power board. If the latter is preferred, any recommendations? My Linn sources use the other two dedicated spurs and I am assuming it is better to run the naim amplification from a single spur. Any thoughts (theory and practical) would be welcome. I did a comparison with one board I had which was certainly different.

Hi – breaking this down:

1- is your dedicated spur from the main house consumer unit (CU) or do you have a dedicated CU for this spur i.e. where the incoming supply is split to hi-fi CU and house CU?

2- what position is the spur on your CU e.g. is it the first wired or in a long line of other house circuits? There seems merit in getting it to ‘draw first’ from the CU (if you can).

3- what type of breaker & rating are you using on the spur at the CU?

i.e. have you optimised (as best possible) your existing feed?

4- re distribution blocks, I can only suggest you use the search function on the Forum and run your eyes down the thread titles. Also a good idea to talk to your/a good dealer, as many of the blocks can be dem’ed sale or return, or get their dem block. The Chord ones have a following but mindful of the need for a dedicated 16A supply cable (from the socket), as they don’t have a standard IEC connector.

It seems Naim suggest a single spur + 'block but opinions on here vary on this.

Consider the role and importance of the earthing arrangement in the supply also. The reasoning (I’m assuming) behind having a single spur that is then supplying a mains block adjacent to your system is that everything is using the same path back to Earth, multiple spurs and multiple sockets will share a common earth but take a different path to reach it.
You ideally want any mains block to be a passive star earthed bridge between the mains spur and the equipment as opposed to being a filter or conditioner which has the potential to degrade the performance and sound.
I connect my kit to wall sockets, mainly for convenience than anything else.


Thanks both. Dedicated CU split on entry to the house as per the excellent thread on this topic. Agree I don’t want to use a board with power conditioning or filtering.

A friend made up a couple of quality power boards for my AV system so I experimented with introducing one into the main hifi system. It is not run in yet so was reserving final judgment on how it sounds because I know it will change. Does a single MK double switch create the same common earth arrangement as an optimally configured powerboard? If so then the hypothesis would be that plugging the 552/500 directly into the switch should all being equal as good or better than a power board. I will do a comparison again this weekend and report.

Perhaps like you, I’d wish someone (Naim?) would be definitive on this. The water is muddied even further when you read (as on here) that Chord’s latest 'block isn’t star-wired (not sure if star-earthed – assume so?) but has multiple bus bars. Also, it appears some of the other ‘recommended’ 'blocks aren’t star-wired either.

And then we come back to using a block in the first place vis the additional connections, fuses et all involved, when logic suggests that links in the chain should be minimised.

I’ve long thought about consulting an electrical panel manufacturer to see if (obviously within regs) they could make a wall-mounted supply box (fed with single 10mm), split down to multiple sockets – all internally star-wired (same cable lengths etc). The issue then might be what ‘mush’ might be created within the wiring inside the box (which I think is where Chord’s IP comes to play?).


Olson springs to mind here with a custom solution. An interesting thought…

I did exactly this, but with different equipment. I was using a 555PSDR powering a 272 and a 300PSDR directly into the double unswitched wall socket at the end of my dedicated mains. I then bought a Naim tuner and had to connect it to the ring main. In the effort to tidy up I thought I’d try a block.

I borrowed the two MusicWorks blocks from my dealer, and an extra PowerLine to connect between the block and the wall. The cheaper block made no appreciable difference but the G3 was sufficiently better that I bought it. The music hung together better and was just more enjoyable to listen to. It’s totally counterintuitive as you are adding another lead and more connections, but that’s how it was.

To keep things fair, I took the tuner out of the equation altogether and simply compared the two boxes either connected directly to the wall socket or via the block.

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Thanks for the prompt re Olson – interesting stuff on their 'site. The draft design & materials spec sheet would be an interesting kickaround :grin:

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Work out how many cables you need for your Naim units, then ring Grahams HiFi in London to order the relevant Hydra (multiple cables running off one plug).

Then use the other socket to power any non-Naim units in your system.

My typo, yes Olson not Olsen. Now corrected :slightly_smiling_face:

Thanks. Already had hydra (two for different naim amp configurations) but moving to 2 powerlines into a single double switch on a dedicated spur was a definite step up.

Thanks Happy Listener and HH. Agree the advice is rather conflicting on this one hence asking in advance of properly comparing myself. I am lucky in that in my case the naim components are just amps so they can connect to a single double socket on one of my three dedicated spurs. I connected the lp12 and the Linn DS/3 into their own dedicated spurs as that made most sense. I will test and report this weekend when I get some time to listen. Thanks.

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