Mains dilemma

Ok … I live in a listed property … and I have very limited access…for getting cables in …
I can just accommodate 10sqmm twin and earth for 1 single radial. Or I might just about be able to get in 2x 6sqmm twin and earth and make a hefty ring. Ideally I need 4 sockets - so with the 10mm radial I was thinking of installing 1 MK twin un-switched socket direct to the 10mm cable, then use a star wired quality mains distribution block and plug everything in.
If I used 2x 6mm in a ring I would need to fit
2 x 6mm tails into an MK socket … is this possible??? to link the sockets up and complete the ring. Any thoughts…

Interesting problem, I can’t address your technical issues as I put dedicated spurs / radials in when I renovated my listed cottage. The problems came later on when I wanted to correct mistakes my sparks made.

First he did not split the consumer unit; new regulations require metal CUs. This was not a problem as it did not mess with listed elements.

Second, I wanted my earth improved. Access is extremely limited and messy (ceiling space tricky and lime plaster work expensive). The solution was to run conduit around the outside of the house from the mains inlet to the 12 sockets.

These improvements made the best upgrade in terms of both sound quality and bangs per buck.

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Speaking as someone that’s replaced a lot of mains sockets in my time… a standard practice when ever we buy a new house, trying to wire an in/out to a mains socket with 6mm2 wires is going to be a right pain. You can probably fit the two wires into the terminals but then trying to get the whole lot pushed back onto the back box is going to take some work.

A 10mm radial with a good block would be ideal. Make sure you get a separate CU for the hifi.

I do not know if that helps.

Because of my degree in electrical engineering, each of my systems had a separate power cable and a separate fuse. I can confirm that a separate power line to the system is a huge gain.

When we moved into the current Loft, it was clear to lay a new cable. For this I used 5x10qmm, because the cable is more than 18m long. And it’s not always easy to connect a separate power cable but it is worthwhile though.

The cable then screwed directly into a power strip and soldered. Problem was to find a power strip in the 5x10qmm fit. After intensive search also found some. The line is secured with 25A.

In fact, I use two power strips in a row with 5 sockets each. Both power strips are screwed on a piece of wood which is attached to the wall.

In the first power strip led the cable. Earth and two wires are attached and then soldered the connection and the other two in the second power strip screwed and also soldered. Yes and now it gets complicated, because the two (same) phases (+) are connected on the one hand to the fuse, on the other hand also in the two power strips. Same with the neutral. Thus, there is no hierarchy in the power strip. It’s like a ring of power.

Above all, it was important for me to have a very good ground connection that I made this way.

:small_blue_diamond:Hermann,…I can only agree with you in this, as well as in the rest you write.

Did as you describe,.the first time back in 1986,.and a few times after that when we changed residence.


Thanks everybody for your response…useful…cheers Another question… is there any benifit in having a separate oversized earth cable … either 10mm or 16mm. I notice companies such as Ansuz promote the use of very low impedance earths…any thoughts???

I once managed to squeeze two 10mm cables into an MK double socket, just to prove a point! It was a tight fit though, and squeezing the stiff cables into the back box wasn’t easy. If you’re going to use a mains block anyway, I would suggest keeping it all as simple as possible, and using a single unswitched socket with a decent star earthed mains block.


This is nonsense. Impedance has nothing to do with it. Since copper is a very good conductor, the impedance does not matter in this case. After all, the purpose of grounding is to create a defined potential. In the case of a voltage on the housing or where it does not belong, derives the emerging current through the ground wire. Therefore, good grounding is very important. It does not matter whether 10 or 16qmm grounding. I have not yet managed to hear an improvement in the sound due to a thicker or different grounding line.
The main thing is the grounding of the house or better the electrical system is correct. Ideally, the so-called transition resistance to ground the house should be as low as possible. This also defines the earthing potential of a stereo system, which is reflected in the result.

Although I agree with your sentiment- slightly too simplistic - you are referring to safety earth - what is often cited in audio is RF earth. Now as we know RF peaks and troughs with respect to impedance and distance - therefore a true a RF earth needs to have good transition impedance across all required frequencies which usually means a chain of electrodes that provide low impedance to to earth for the required frequencies ( I have these).
So once the cascade array of earthing electrodes is provided - then the the width of the conductor helps - the thicker the conductor then the lower the impedance due to the skin effect… So a larger earth conductor to a cascaded chain of earth electrodes in a TT earthing setup will be beneficial. Note applying such an arrangement to a TN-S or TN-C-S earthing arraignment could be lethal or cause severe damage - only do if you know what you are doing and can obtain certification, or use a qualified electrician.

If I understand the TO correctly, this is about the power cable to a stereo system. For that applies the written by me. It is correct to leave these things to an electrician.

I assume that you mean a so-called earth network, as it is used in transmitters and self-radiating antennas. What makes this system in a residential building for an audio system, not accessible to me. However, it is quite possible that some insight has been gained in the past 30 years. I’m not informed about that.

In all audio systems that I have installed so far was an important point to measure the earth connections and if necessary to improve. If a good house earth is installed, it does not matter if a 10qmm or 16qmm ground wire is used for the audio system. If the contact resistance to the ground is too large, that is, very bad ground, no thicker conductor will help to the earth connection.

Regarding RF Earth for audio devices, however, it seems quite divided opinions to give, which confirms my short search. I also could not find any conclusive explanation for this measure.

On my supply I used a 10mm radial to a Henley block next to the socket locations behind my system, then from there to two separate MK unswitched double sockets. Works a treat and avoids using hydra blocks.

My 555PS and 300PS were plugged into a double unswitched socket on the end of my 20mm radial. Earlier this week I added a block just for the two boxes, which was then connected to one of the two sockets. I wasn’t expecting much but it’s much better. I’ve no idea why.

Hi HH - a 20mm radial!!! does that comprise of 2x10mm??? I thought 16mm was the largest std cable…wow you could almost suspend your fraims from that!!!

Has anybody experimented with extremely low impedance earths … I know electrically there should be no reason for improvement. But companies such as Ansuz and Entreq keep banging on about it and claim it is critical… has anybody actually tried say a 16sqmm reference earth…right back to the consumer unit…

Oops, I meant 10.

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I almost had cable jealousy … phew

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My earth conductor is 4mm2 like the live and neutral in CY cable. Standard 10mm2 has a small earth conductor. I’m not in the least dissatisfied with my dedicated radial.


I may not understand you correctly, but in a 5x10mm² standard cable also has the earth wire 10 mm².

In a standard 6242y 10mm twin and earth cable the earth conductor is 4mm. I use six of these with star earthing at the sockets and an additional 10mm single core earth running back to the dedicated consumer unit for high integrity low impedance earthing.