#1
Hey guys, I've got a question for you. I've been playing the acoustic guitar for a number of years now and next year I want to buy my first electric guitar and amp and I'm worried about getting electrocuted. I have basically no knowledge of electronics that's why I figured I'd ask here. It may sound ridiculous but better safe than sorry. So the problem is that I live in an apartment that doesn't have grounded wall sockets in all rooms and I don't think it'd be a great idea to use my amp in one of the ungrounded sockets. Also, I live in continental Europe where we have different type of outlets than in Britain or America, the mains are 220-230 volts, we have two-prong plugs and usually the sockets are grounded. My question is should I be worried that my kit is going to kill me and what should I do to minimize the risk of getting zapped? I'm also thinking about getting an electrician have a look at my stuff because I really don't feel like playing Russian roulette with my sockets.
#3
My house doesn't have grounded sockets except for kitchen and bathroom. Ungrounded outlets aren't dangerous if there's no way to ground yourself. In fact, it's a lot safer than mixing.
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#5
IDK I live in the U.S. 110volts and never had an issue using an ungrounded socket.
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#6
if you're going to get an electrician to take a look, do that first

using an rcd can help (it may well be built into your home's electrics already)- it doesn't protect you from everything but it's better than nothing (as long as it doesn't give you a false sense of security and make you think you're invincible, of course ).

don't go poking about inside your amp, even if it's off.

if everything is working as it should, mains voltage shouldn't be going through your guitar. but obviously "working as it should" is quite the caveat.

wireless between your guitar and amp would be a way to be a fair bit safer.

EDIT: there used to be a good link on the guitarnuts site but it seems to have died
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
Last edited by Dave_Mc at Dec 27, 2016,
#7
Regardless of the outlet grounding, there is practically zero chance of getting electrocuted via guitar. There is no significant current running through the cord, and that's a one way road. Something would have to go terribly wrong for the current to even touch the input jack, and at that point I'm sure it would pretty obvious that the amp is malfunctioning.

Basically, electrocution via guitar has never happened as far as I know, and it would be an extraordinary freak occurrence if it did happen.

And to be clear, my concern about your ungrounded outlets isn't electrocution, it's fire. Devices running enough current to require a ground generate quite a bit of heat if they have a short somewhere. In the case of a short in the device, the un-resisted current can cause the wires in your wall heat up and catch fire, if the breaker doesn't flip in time.
Last edited by cdgraves at Dec 27, 2016,
#8
Older amps didnt have a "safety" ground
Last edited by geo-rage at Dec 27, 2016,
#9
This thread has made me glad I live in the UK where we have 3 prong grounded electrical plugs and sockets for super safety fitted as standard.
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#10
Quote by N1ghtmar3C1n3ma
This thread has made me glad I live in the UK where we have 3 prong grounded electrical plugs and sockets for super safety fitted as standard.


It's standard in the US, as well, but there are sometimes exceptions for older buildings so that the whole thing doesn't have to be re-wired in order to legally complete a basic repair. Of course, that doesn't mean it's any safer or that un-grounded outlets are within the building code.
#11
Oh my! I've actually went with a two to three prong plug adaptor just to get rid of my ground, Crappy florescent lights and such causing too much interference through a ground loop, I just try not to play in the bath/shower or rain, Problem solved, I take it your parents survived right? In your case the jury is still out, Besides the line level voltage coming out of the amp to the guitar is about 1.5v/1.0ma, and Voltage doesn't kill you wattage/amperage does, So as long as you stay away from the 600w and up amps and don't play in the rain you should be OK
#12
Plugging in an amp would be no different than plugging in any other electrical appliance. I mean, I assume you have a computer plugged in somewhere and you seem to be comfortable with that... No crazy electrical currents to your keyboard or mouse, I assume? Why should your guitar and amp be any different?
#13
Quote by cdgraves
Regardless of the outlet grounding, there is practically zero chance of getting electrocuted via guitar. There is no significant current running through the cord, and that's a one way road. Something would have to go terribly wrong for the current to even touch the input jack, and at that point I'm sure it would pretty obvious that the amp is malfunctioning.

Basically, electrocution via guitar has never happened as far as I know, and it would be an extraordinary freak occurrence if it did happen.

And to be clear, my concern about your ungrounded outlets isn't electrocution, it's fire. Devices running enough current to require a ground generate quite a bit of heat if they have a short somewhere. In the case of a short in the device, the un-resisted current can cause the wires in your wall heat up and catch fire, if the breaker doesn't flip in time.


what, it has happened loads of times, including with some big names.

it's especially dangerous in gigs.
Quote by N1ghtmar3C1n3ma
This thread has made me glad I live in the UK where we have 3 prong grounded electrical plugs and sockets for super safety fitted as standard.


you can still get electrocuted...
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#14
Thanks a bunch for the comments they were really helpful, even the snarky ones. I know that there has been not one guitarist who died this way and I don't want to join their club. So I'm definitely calling an electrician before I do anything.
#16
agreed. especially if you know your home wiring etc. is dodgy.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?