How can I know which cable should be "live" and which one should be "neutral", or does it not matter? (GU10 socket).


GU10 sockets are symmetrical:

GU10 socket

So there is no need to pay attention to where you hook the live and neutral wires, because the lamp can be inserted either way. As the wiring is AC the main reason to wire it up one way or another is for safety considerations.

If you are wiring the switch too, put it on the live wire if possible, so that changing the lamp with the switch off is actually safe. The socket looks pretty safe to me anyway.

  • I see! So AC lamps such as those attaching to GU10 can have the current flow from either direction? Thanks!
    – Phil
    Aug 27 '14 at 12:28
  • 1
    Well AC current is... Alternating, so yes. The point is that the neutral voltage is usually near ground so it's safer to touch the neutral than the live wire, so for safety reasons, or depending on how the device you are connecting is made, swapping N and L will result in bad things. Aug 27 '14 at 12:37
  • 1
    Even an Edison will WORK if wired backwards. But, for safety reasons, you want the live wire on the center piece so you don't accidentally touch the threaded sleeve. Aug 28 '14 at 14:49

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