HUBBELL IG3800 clones? AC sockets /AC wire
I recently got a bunch of Hubbell IG8300 AC sockets for some projects I'm working on (and to upgrade my house sockets). Well I was at two hardware stores today and I saw the wierdest thing, both stores were selling what looked like clones of the IG3800 down to the orange plastic covering. All specs semmed to be identical, the only difference was the price, one store was selling thier version (Lowes-Eagle Electric) for about $8.00 and the other store (Home Depot-Leviton Pro Grade) for about $13.00. Both are hospital grade, and seem well built. I bought one to bring home to compare to the actual Hubbell sockets and the only difference is a slight difference in the molding of the plastic. Has anyone had any experiance with these? Do you think the sound would change by using one of them instead of the actual Hubbell socket? Also I was also wondering if anyone knew where I could get Belden Wire. I checked all the local hardware stores but couldn't find any. I've been meaning to build some mains cables but the DIY design I was going to use calls for Belden 14/3 wire and no one seems to carry it. I know I could use another brand of wire and it'll work but I doubt it would have the same sonic qualities the Belden would have.
Man, you are lucky to find hospital grade in
Lowes or HD. Sure can't find them in my
town. Which stores did you go to; near
I'm not really into fancy receptacles other
than they do a much better job of grabbing
the plug on your power cord. Sure can't hurt.
Hubbell is definitely the best, strongest,
and most robust in my experience. Pass and
Seymour are excellent as well. The best
Leviton are excellent as well -- "super spec",
which I think are better than "pro".
Look for units that have the same certifications
as the Hubbell "8200" and "5262" receptacles
shown in the following datasheet:
This includes "Federal Spec WC596", the
NEMA WD... etc.
Note that most vendors mimic the Hubbell p/n's
for similar "equivalent" items.
I'd avoid Eagle and the other low-grade stuff,
including the lower grades/brands of the
above-mentioned "good" manufacturers.
The Hubbell 8200/8300 hospital grade and
their non-hospital equivalents 5262/5362
definitely set the standard.
Remember that the cheap receptacle that you
plug your equipment into is not the total
problem; so is every other receptacle in
that circuit between your system and the
power panel. Even if nothing is plugged
into them, they're likely to not have beefy
connections to the wire going in/out of them.
Disclaimer: Don't mess with household wiring
unless qualified. Doing so maybe be dangerous
to you and others and may void your fire
The Leviton plug I bought to compare to the Hubbell 8300's I have has both Pro-grade and super spec on it's label...wonder if that means anything. Both the Eagle and the Leviton were hospital-grade, the Eagle even had a similar parts number to the Hubbell both started out with IG8300, I bought the Leviton just becuase it was at the second store I was at and by thrn my curiosity had gotten the better of me. I live on the west-side of El Paso (actually I live in Sunset Heights but my mom lives off Resler) so both stores are fairly near Sunland Park. My guess would be that any Home Depot and Lowes would have the plaugs. What I found odd was that they were the only plugs there that were Hospital Grade, all other were either home or commercial grade. I also couldn't find any hospital grade male plugs to make a cord. I have noticed an improvement over using the $1.50 AC recepticles that were installed in my apartment. I've also noticed an improvement when using better AC cords than the ones the manufacturer includes (in most cases, there were some cases when changing cords made little percievable improvement). It only makes sense to me that the quality of plugs etc your using could make a difference in the overall sound you recieve, I don't know if I'd put it at rhe level of using good speaker wires, or IC's but it has definately made a difference. Plus it was a cheap way to further improve the performance of my system once I knew I wasn't going to be upgrading my componants any time soon. Luckily I have about 10 of the Hubbells left, and since I got them really cheaply, I figure I'll have AC plugs for any project I may start in the forseeable future.
Well, I've sure never seen such fancy ones at my local HD
or new neighborhood Lowes.
As I said, be sure to replace all the receptacles between
the one your system uses and the breaker box. It's
not that there's any magic -- it's just that the cheap
receptacles are not likely making good low-resistance
connections to the wires.
As I said, I'd use Hubbell, P&S, and Leviton only, but not Eagle,
Bryant, etc., and these are what my local HD has.
My house has the "Decora" style receptacles, so "management"
would not take kindly to me inserting a few traditional style
units. I'm thinking of having HD order some of the heavy
duty Leviton Decora receptacles (#16262 or # 16262-HG)
or seeing if a local electrical distributor has them.
We used to live just north of Mesa, off of whatever it was
they called the street that Sunland Park Drive turns into
after it crosses Mesa. At the time there was nothing
on the west side of S.P. Drive; just the mall and the the
few stores to its north.
I used to live right near you (right off Sunland Park- in the crestmont park area..ridgemont to be exact) the Home Depot next to the Wal-Mart up Mesa has the Leviton 8300's and if I remember right also had the Decora style equivalant you might want to give them a try. I first moved there, before the Mall was even built, in fact Crestmont Park was pretty much the end of it all. Behind out house on Ridgemont there was nothing but hills of desert, now they've leveled that all out and there's a road, buildings etc...kinda a bummer, it was the coolest house ever when we first moved in...the view was unbeatable once they leveled out desert behind there it changed...anyways, will changing all the outlets make a big difference? I'm wondering since I live in an aprtment in the Sunset Heights area and the building is kinda old (there's only 8 apt's to the whole building) if that'll have a huge influence. Anyways I have more than enough receptecles so changing them all won't be such a big deal.
Like I said, change/check all the ones between your stereo's
outlet and the breaker box.
Barring change-out, check each receptacle. It is probably a cheap
consumer one with the"rear wiring" where the wire is pushed
into a hole and a little spring-loaded barb 'grabs' the wire,
if you can call it that. Very poor connection over the long
term. If that's the case you can just remove the wires, make
u-bends in them and then screw them down with the side
The important thing is that there be a solid connections, not
so much the 'audiophile-ness' of the other receptacles
themselves.. In my own house, I just try to put in good
receptacles whenever I do work -- why mess with junk
units? But if renting, you may not want to put all these
fancy receptacles into the walls, so just follow the above
suggestion and check them all out.
The back wiring on good receptacles like your Hubbell is
really good. The wire goes between two beefy plates and
then you screw them down really tight with the screw. MUCH
better than the cheap consumer receptacles.
Well, it's been 12 years since we've been there -- a one year
temporary assignment. We lived in Thunderbird Valley,
which was sort of hidden behind the apartments on the right
as you go N. from Mesa.
We still have good friends in El Paso and are there every so
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