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  • Audiophile Ethernet Switch

    Audiophile Ethernet Switch
    The Linear Solution and their audiophile switch do exist. If their switch is anything to base expectations of future products on, keep your eye on for this company. What I heard works.

    As a little background, I have been dabbling in digital audio playback for a while now. I bought my first music server about 5 year ago. When I finally broke that one, I bought another. My current unit is a Mojo Audio server that is quite user adjustable. With the help of other audio friends, I have loaded windows server 2016, audiophile optimizer, Roon and HQ player onto this unit. After these upgrades I found the sound quite staggering. So much so I took my record player apart and sent if for repairs as it sounded so poor compared to my digital setup. I am using a pretty basic DAC. It is an RT Audio USB Ultra Orpheus dac. The sound between the two is clean, clear, accurate and well rounded. All round it is a very pleasant and musical experience. Most music I play from the second internal drive where I keep music I play most often. I have a NAS but the sound from the internal drive is better. It is more quiet and clear. There is less hash and grain. Until today.

    Adrian with the Linear Solution brought one of his ethernet switches to my house. We did a couple back and forth between my internal hard drive music storage, NAS and Tidal. After inserting the Linear switch the sound from my NAS gained a very pleasant quiet. It was subtle but there. Nicer and easier to listen too. We then tried music from Tidal. This was much more of a noticeable gain. The dynamics and all around fun were greatly enhanced. It just flowed more like music. With Tidal there was no question as to whether this was a “am I really hearing it or not”. No blind test were necessary. It stood out. Between the internal storage and NAS it took me a couple back and forth to really understand what was different and pick it out. But you could. I and Adrian both. More quiet and pure. A nice ease. I found I could easily up my gain by 3 db and have no adverse affects.

    Adrian also brought a plane Jane laptop to my house. He wanted to show me the new software that is going into a server they are building. The server sounds outstanding. It is going to squarely compete with the Sound Gallery Music Server. From a hardware standpoint it sounds fully thought through. As far as the software, with his plane old laptop, the level of quiet and transparency was astounding. This competed directly with my very nice server. I only had a few minutes to really listen, but I believe it lacked some dynamics. I feel this is to be expected as there is not near the power delivery or basic hardware enhancements in place that should free up the sound. Installed in their server I am confident it will compete with any cost no object server out there. He quoted me a price but Im not sure I should publish it. I will say this. It sits in the middle of the heap as far as price. You do need a DAC. That is going to be a consideration. There are some interesting choices out there that integrated together have the ability to upsample correctly and give a very high level of performance. The server Adrian was sharing with me will not be an upsampling unit. It will stream what you store or pull from Tidal. Of course upsampling may not be all its cracked up to be. Sounds good in conversation, but it creates a lot of noise due to heavy computing resources being used. This in turn creates noise. Noise seems to drowned out any gains from the upsamping. I’m not trying to get into a deal over what is best. The Linear Solution feels at this time upsampling is unnecessary and not including it. At this time. Technology does move pretty fast. In theory, upsampling on one machine and handing the stream to another computer has the potential to overcome some of these hurdles. I don’t see it being done much but there is musing and conjecture around the idea.

    Anyhow, I feel any decent audio system that is utilizing a NAS or especially Tidal as a means to playback music will benefit from this switch. I am waiting to get mine as they are a couple weeks out from delivery. They are $659 complete. Power supply included. They are also making a cat 7 cable. It is suggested to use the cat 7 from the switch to the server. It is not really necessary in the rest of the chain as the switch is going to clean the power and reclock the signal.

    Happy Listening.
    PAP Trio 15 Horn speakers, Audion Black Shadow monoblocks, First Sound Audio Mark 3SI Paramount preamp,
    Mojo Audio Deja Vu server, Mojo Audio Mystique V3 DAC, STST Motus II TT, Vertere SG1 arm, Hanna ML, Allnic H1201 Phono pre, The Linear Solution Ethernet Switch, LPS to Modem Router and Switch, Blue Jeans Ethernet cabling throughout network, Akiko Corelli, Custom power strip direct wired to panel with OFC copper wire.10 awg dedicated branch circuits to amps bolted to power cords. Significant upgrades to 120 volt main power panel. Inakustik Ref Air 2404 Speaker cable. Genesis and Inakustik NF2404 Air Interconnects. ADDPower Symphony and Electraclear.

  • #2
    AQV have a very good reputation round here...

    Comment


    • #3
      I have taken possssion of my new Linear Solution Ethernet switch. Really just a wonderfull improvement to my system utilizing my NAS or Tidal with it. I am really surprised how much of an improvement it brought to playback via my NAS.

      For instance Cat Stevens, Where Do The Children Play. The intro has this powerful plucked bass line. Via my internal storage the play is strong and clear. Good separation of instruments. Great to listen too. From my NAS through the Linear Solution Switch the bass line takes on a wonderful resonant feel. The twang and natural energy of the string moving in air is alive. Full of natural excitement and life. It is a nice step towards real purity.

      Bob Marley Ledgend, No Woman No Cry. I never heard the crowd so part of the recording. They were always there, by now it's a palpable part of the performance. You can really feel the play back and forth with the crowd.

      I am also sensitive to an electric guitar. I have played nice American made Gibson and Fender through, Mesa, Marshal and Fender tube amps. 2x12, 4x12, cabinets. I know the grit and bite that pushes through your body. This is the closest to in the flesh playback I have gotten out of any medium. It has once again pushed further than my vinyl. My current vinyl is no slouch either. I really stepped it up with the new table and Sound Smith Sappire retip of my Denon. Best I have had. The vinyl compared to digital still can't fill the gap on the basics such as air, ease of play and sound stage. With the switch in place the gap has now further expanded. Through the new switch the bass has extended deeper and responds faster. The biggest surprise is the way instruments have more of a natural sound. it's hard to put into words, it's just more visceral. The crack of a snare has that immediacy in lift. Vocals are more legible. Violins have even more of the wood resonance. Natural.

      let me give you a little system test. Play Jimmy Buffet A Man Went To Paris. On the second set of Lyrics Jimmy carries out a sustain on his vocals. You should be able to clearly hear him carry out the line "Saving The World On His Own". Listen to the word "Own". It goes on for a couple seconds. Its very quiet with a clear warble in the tone. This is one of those attributes that jumped out at me. I never really noticed it before but its plain as day now. Well done Jimmy.

      I gather some members on Computer Audiophile who do extensive testing and posting of equipment have also purchased the switch. I gather some of them are selling their $3,000 reference clocks as this switch is doing more for the playback. I have to read up on this, but its what I heard. Who knows.

      Adrian is also getting ready to launch his server. He has accepted orders for the first couple. There is going to be a limited run of the signature edition. After that he said he is going to focus more on the production model, so if you want something that may be more akin to the best of the best give them a call. If his simple switch can do as much for my system as it did for mine, I would bet the rest of his product line is top notch.

      Happy Listening.
      PAP Trio 15 Horn speakers, Audion Black Shadow monoblocks, First Sound Audio Mark 3SI Paramount preamp,
      Mojo Audio Deja Vu server, Mojo Audio Mystique V3 DAC, STST Motus II TT, Vertere SG1 arm, Hanna ML, Allnic H1201 Phono pre, The Linear Solution Ethernet Switch, LPS to Modem Router and Switch, Blue Jeans Ethernet cabling throughout network, Akiko Corelli, Custom power strip direct wired to panel with OFC copper wire.10 awg dedicated branch circuits to amps bolted to power cords. Significant upgrades to 120 volt main power panel. Inakustik Ref Air 2404 Speaker cable. Genesis and Inakustik NF2404 Air Interconnects. ADDPower Symphony and Electraclear.

      Comment


      • #4
        What were you using prior? I have a Netgear running off an SBooster and AC power cord from Pangea. A few Shakti Onlines are on the switch as well along with 3 LAN units from Acoustic Revive. Adrian did send me both a Linear Solution Ethernet switch and Linear Solution WiFi extender for review but wanted them both back after a month or so - unable to get much if anything done in that time frame as I had other items in the chain for review. What is the retail?
        Dave Clark
        Editor and Publisher, Positive Feedback
        www.positive-feedback.com

        Comment


        • #5
          I was using a Netgear switch powered with a Core Audio Linear PS. CAT6 cable throughout. No special power cord.
          PAP Trio 15 Horn speakers, Audion Black Shadow monoblocks, First Sound Audio Mark 3SI Paramount preamp,
          Mojo Audio Deja Vu server, Mojo Audio Mystique V3 DAC, STST Motus II TT, Vertere SG1 arm, Hanna ML, Allnic H1201 Phono pre, The Linear Solution Ethernet Switch, LPS to Modem Router and Switch, Blue Jeans Ethernet cabling throughout network, Akiko Corelli, Custom power strip direct wired to panel with OFC copper wire.10 awg dedicated branch circuits to amps bolted to power cords. Significant upgrades to 120 volt main power panel. Inakustik Ref Air 2404 Speaker cable. Genesis and Inakustik NF2404 Air Interconnects. ADDPower Symphony and Electraclear.

          Comment


          • #6
            Am working on getting the AQVOX unit here for review...
            Dave Clark
            Editor and Publisher, Positive Feedback
            www.positive-feedback.com

            Comment


            • #7
              For anyone reading this, keep in mind the topology of your system can affect the amount of impact you received from any switch upgrade.

              Endpoints such as Sonore or or SOTM will be affected to differing degree. Especially so by which model of either product you have. Also the source will have an impact. If you are feeding an endpoint with a laptop you will get much different results than feeding an endpoint with a quality LPS server containing an isolated ethernet card sending the signal.

              Servers will be affected in other ways than end points. Whether the server has an internal ethernet card will also affect the sound. And the quality of the card will also impact the sound. And the power supply and grounding to the card will affect the sound.

              The results I got were based upon a server with no internal ethernet devices other than what comes off the main board.
              PAP Trio 15 Horn speakers, Audion Black Shadow monoblocks, First Sound Audio Mark 3SI Paramount preamp,
              Mojo Audio Deja Vu server, Mojo Audio Mystique V3 DAC, STST Motus II TT, Vertere SG1 arm, Hanna ML, Allnic H1201 Phono pre, The Linear Solution Ethernet Switch, LPS to Modem Router and Switch, Blue Jeans Ethernet cabling throughout network, Akiko Corelli, Custom power strip direct wired to panel with OFC copper wire.10 awg dedicated branch circuits to amps bolted to power cords. Significant upgrades to 120 volt main power panel. Inakustik Ref Air 2404 Speaker cable. Genesis and Inakustik NF2404 Air Interconnects. ADDPower Symphony and Electraclear.

              Comment


              • #8
                https://audiobacon.net/2018/09/28/th...digital-audio/

                Here is a write up on the switch. I't helped my digital. Especially my NAS and streaming. I did not notice improvements in my internal stored music. It also was not night and day, but it was notable. I would not remove it from my chain. . I had a netgear with a linear PS on it before. .
                PAP Trio 15 Horn speakers, Audion Black Shadow monoblocks, First Sound Audio Mark 3SI Paramount preamp,
                Mojo Audio Deja Vu server, Mojo Audio Mystique V3 DAC, STST Motus II TT, Vertere SG1 arm, Hanna ML, Allnic H1201 Phono pre, The Linear Solution Ethernet Switch, LPS to Modem Router and Switch, Blue Jeans Ethernet cabling throughout network, Akiko Corelli, Custom power strip direct wired to panel with OFC copper wire.10 awg dedicated branch circuits to amps bolted to power cords. Significant upgrades to 120 volt main power panel. Inakustik Ref Air 2404 Speaker cable. Genesis and Inakustik NF2404 Air Interconnects. ADDPower Symphony and Electraclear.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Merging Technologies (Pyramix) recommends the Cisco SG350 series of switches. That's what I've been using and they sound great to me!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    The owner of Mojo who made my server says I'm wasting my money, yet I clearly hear the difference between this and an off the shelf device.

                    I know another member with a nice digital front end that should not need an "audiophile switch", yet he benefited from a competitors switch.

                    I get a new server in a couple weeks. I will have another chance to test it with a device designed more to stream.
                    PAP Trio 15 Horn speakers, Audion Black Shadow monoblocks, First Sound Audio Mark 3SI Paramount preamp,
                    Mojo Audio Deja Vu server, Mojo Audio Mystique V3 DAC, STST Motus II TT, Vertere SG1 arm, Hanna ML, Allnic H1201 Phono pre, The Linear Solution Ethernet Switch, LPS to Modem Router and Switch, Blue Jeans Ethernet cabling throughout network, Akiko Corelli, Custom power strip direct wired to panel with OFC copper wire.10 awg dedicated branch circuits to amps bolted to power cords. Significant upgrades to 120 volt main power panel. Inakustik Ref Air 2404 Speaker cable. Genesis and Inakustik NF2404 Air Interconnects. ADDPower Symphony and Electraclear.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I use the Uptone Regen ether switch between Draytek modem and Aurender. I heard the difference with and without. Prefer the ether switch.

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