Can I use 100V equipment in Australia?

Yes, as long as you understand a few technical details.


You can use any voltage thing anywhere you like, but you need to know all the relevant voltage and power consumption ratings and then select a suitable step-down (or step-up transformer). For 100V Japanese equipment that cannot be reconfigured for local voltage, you’ll need a quality step-down transformer with the correct power rating and voltage.

Such a step-down transformer should be sourced from a quality local manufacturer like Tortech. It should be rated to deliver between 1.5x and 3x (or more, just not less) the rated maximum continuous power consumption of the attached equipment. It must also deliver precisely the voltage your equipment requires, again, not more, or less.

This means that 100V-rated equipment needs a 100V step-down transformer, rather than the 110V or 120V offerings commonly available from places like Jaycar. Make sure you know which one you need, as indicated on the placard on the rear of your equipment. Avoid cheap Chinese transformers as these are usually incorrectly rated for voltage and often under-rated for power.

Special Cases

If you have a powerful amplifier, you’ll need a big step-down transformer and these can be expensive. An amplifier rated for 500W maximum power consumption should be matched with a transformer rated for a minimum of 1kW at 100% duty cycle, more if possible. That’s a hefty transformer. The high rating is to minimise power supply source impedance and transformer core saturation. This will maximise amplifier performance and ensure the transformer does not overheat during normal use.

For this reason, and because suitably hefty step-down transformers can be very heavy and quite expensive, whilst it is possible to use them without penalty, amplifiers are the least well-suited for use with step-down transformers. This especially applies to big, heavy current-hungry amplifiers of high power output, or high constant current draw equipment. For low-powered equipment like turntables, DACs and preamps though, step-down transformers work well.

A decent-sized transformer with a higher power rating will safely be able to run several low-power devices. Just make sure that the total continuous power consumption of all the connected equipment is comfortably exceeded (1.5x to 3x, or more) by the continuous maximum rating of the stepdown transformer.


You must never plug equipment rated to run on 100V or 120V into an Australian 240V mains outlet unless it has been set to run at 240V. This may require internal adjustment, soldering, and new parts and will require new fuses of a different current rating to suit the higher line voltage.

Failure to adhere to this warning will almost certainly result in the death of your equipment.


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