Same question, should we turn off the units or not?

I’m afraid if I keep the units on 24/7 then the capacitor will age very soon. What are you opinions?

Same as all the other replies before. ‘Search’ is your friend.

And I deed I noticed if I keep them on for 2 weeks then the sound quality is not that good anymore

It takes years for large electrolytic capacitors to fall out of spec, longer for small sizes, and a lifetime for plastic film.

Never turn off your Naim equipment, unless you’re going away for more than a couple of days, or in the event of a thunderstorm when it’s best to shut down and unplug your system from the mains power.
Capacitors will require replacing again in the future regardless of use.


I cycle mine off once a month, normally on a Sunday night I shut it down and turn it back on in the morning.


Well my experience Amps and Speakers when they have been off for years storage etc. you can plainly hear they do not work properly. And after a few weeks they work like originally (if you are lucky) Capacitors need current going through them to repair themselves. I have Naim Pre and Power never repaired which have been on mains 24/7 for 30yrs so definately recommend it. Switching on and off generates power surges which damages all components and should be avoided in my opinion.


As above, leave on unless going away or during a storm and perhaps recycle by turning off periodically

(Tongue firmly in cheek)

Although I have no doubt that Southern Electric would be delighted if I kept my 7.1 Statement system on all the time (8 x 750 W, isn’t it?), my meagre pension doesn’t allow for the expense…

So, in reality, the olive active SBLs system and the Aktiv Briks system are switched off when not in use. They take about fifteen minutes to warm up…

The Meridian 5.1 system has a low power “standby” mode.


For some reason I was reading the manual for the Rega Aura phono amp.
The section ‘Powering up’ says:

This Rega pre-amplifier circuit has been carefully designed to work with a minimal “warm up” period. Some manufacturers and retailers may recommend leaving amplifiers permanently switched on. Rega cannot condone such practice in these environmentally sensitive times. We would recommend that your Rega amplifier is always switched off after use. Full sound quality is attained after less than ten minutes (a process speeded up by playing music).

Just something to think about. :thinking:
BTW, my Naim stuff is always on.

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Most gear these days have some sort of protection against that power surge at switch on. At first switch on you can hear that big surge - like some sci-fi vehicle warming up - then shortly afterwards a relay click, then normal operation resumes.

I tend to follow manufacturer’s recommendations in the, perhaps naive, belief that they know best about their equipment. When I had multiple Naim boxes I kept them switched on and I keep my Atom in standby when not in use. The non-Naim streamer/pre in the main system is left on, but the power amp packs in my active speakers are only switched on half an hour before a listening session. As I said, all in accordance with maker’s recommendations.


Can you explain the decrease of sound quality?

Why do people buy kit that has certain instructions in the manual. For example; leaving it switched on, as in Naim kit and then query it.

Just do what the manual states, if they recommend to leave it on, then leave it on. And vice-versa.

It’s really that simple.


Sic et simpliciter.

My Naim kit is always on unless moved or unplugged for a good reason.

Can I tell any difference, probably, but in reality it’s too much faff turning it off/on for each usage - I’ll be environmentally friendly in other areas that are easier to automate.

Ultimately though, most of use would probably consider sound quality paramount rather than capacitor longevity - do a few tests - if you can identify a significanit sonic benefit go with it irrespective of the energy concerns unless that really matters to you as an individual - I honestly believe hifi users who keep equipment on 24/7 are probably insignificant in the grand scheme of things.

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That’s a really good point actually. I’ve been trialling a usb stick in my Nova and switched on server mode but this uses around 15W in standby according to the manual.

I’m not fussed about the cost and my supplier is 100% renewables but still. Less power consumption is always good so may well put it in deep sleep or revert back to the NAS.

I find the Rega statement a bit simplistic. Environmental impact isn’t simply watts pulled on your mains.

The majority of electrical component failures still happen on power on/off. And the probability of any one unit having a problem over 10 years might be low but, probability is calculated via a multipler. So it dramatically increases with the number of units you have.

It only takes the failure of one unit in a 10 year period to completely negate any environmental benefit gained by powering off when not in use. A failed appliance generates demand for one or more of the following:

  • Transportation to a service station. In some cases overseas.
  • Raw materials for replacement parts.
  • Manufacture of replacement parts.
  • Manufacturer of a replacement appliance in full.
  • Transportation back to the owner of repaired/replaced appliance.

Not to mention the other non environmental impact on your wallet. For expensive luxury hifi items, the cost of any of the above likely outstrips the cost savings of idle mains power usage for the whole hifi over 10 years, let alone one unit.

I think it is important to not be wasteful. But it gets my goat when claims are made that it is as simple as turning things off and if you do this, then you are doing your bit and can have a clear conscience. It is so much more complicated than that. Every decision you make is going to have a potential trade off somewhere else and it might in fact be larger than the efficiency you are attempting to gain.

Some things might be better to turn off given their expected lifespan or low unit cost. But ultimately, the variables are so complex that it is really down to the user to make a judgement call. Telling the consumer that powering off absolutely makes them part of the solution rather than the problem is disingenuous and pretends the issue is simpler than it is.


I don’t know about outside the United States but almost everything we buy here as a consumer product electrical has stickers tell you how much energy an estimated cost for the year. With the energy saving light bulbs and other devices I don’t think having your stereo on is draining anyone’s bank account. I think everybody’s refrigerator and freezer is on 24/7. Good night and Merry Christmas

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No it’s definitely not draining the bank :joy: even at 15W it’s only costing me about 5 pence/day.

However, as with stop/start in the car it’s not so much about individual gains but overall.