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Old 04-16-2019, 11:00 PM
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Default Front end digital foundation

Several posts are out on various network switches, optical filtering devices, etc.

Spend some time learning whatís out there, you will be blown away what digital is capable of. Breaking it down, all in will gain you a lot more than the cost of a mid to high level power cable, brand depending

There are several brands of network switches; the top contenders are AQVox (German) SOtM (Korea) and The Linear Solution (Washington, USA).

Gigafoil v4 is a top contender in optical filtering, and TP Link makes a filtering device at much less then the Gigafoil.

I highly recommended the use of a linear power supply (LPS) and not to forgot the aftermarket AC and DC power cables, plus isolation feet. There are a lot of companies making LPS with several options and price points.

One of my largest system gains at the lowest outlay of cash was incorporating the LPS on the modem, network switch and optical filtering with decent cables just adds a natural refinement to the sound, itís beyond amazing. My system has never sounded so good with all the cables and components settled in nicely. Not to mention the collateral benefit of playing with modems and such are the Apple TVs and regular cable through the home which has all upped their game.

I chose Ghent cables, located in China to make my DC cables and he uses high end Japanese Oyaide cable and connectors. These cables are way beyond reasonable. I just updated to the Gotham at under a $100 each for 1M.

Purpose of this thread is to lump the digital foundation conversation into one thread.

Enjoy Your Sound 🤺

Image1555469345.163370.jpg
__________________
Power Conditioning, Filters & Switch: Nordost QRT Power Product Line, Furutech GTX-D NCF/GTX 105D, 20 AMP Dedicated w/Surge Protection, AQVox SE switch, Keces LPS P3ís & P8 w/Nordost AC power and Ghent DC cables for Gigafoil v4, modem, routers, switches & Stillpoints.
Cables, Isolation, Room Treatment: Nordost Supreme Reference (Odin) Distribution, Reference Line (Valhalla 2) Components and Speakers, Ansuz C2, HRS M3X Platforms & Damping Plates. Stillpointís Ultra 6/SS and Vicoustic Room Treatments
Power & Sound: DíAgostino Pre-Amplifier to DíAgostino Momentum Monoís driving Wilson Alexiaís
Source and Digital: Aurender N10, Brinkmann Nyquist MKII

Last edited by For The Love of Music; 05-19-2019 at 10:46 PM.
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  #2  
Old 04-17-2019, 08:01 AM
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Good idea.

I have been reading and learning about switches/filters/LPS/fiber/cables for digital improvement.

Recently, Jeff (JGlacken) lent me his Gigafoil v4 and a 0.65m Resolution Audio Ethernet Cable to try in my system. I learned two things.

The Gigafoil and generic Cat 6 cable for the last meter inserted close to my SilenZio made my system imbalanced. It became too bass heavy. Inserting the Resolution Audio Ethernet cable (All Silver) was like a shot in the arm. The balance came back and everything sounded smoother - clearer - punchier. Better.

I am going to try other Cat 6 cables I have and then remove the Gigafoil v4 and return my system to its reference state. I hope it sounds great without the Gigafoil and new cable as that will save me money.

Stay tuned.
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Main room - Sonus Faber Stradivari, JL Audio F113v2 & CR-1 Crossover, McIntosh MC2301 Amplifiers with Stillpoint Ultra SS feet, McIntosh C1100 on Stillpoint Minis, Esoteric K-03X on Stillpoint Minis, Cybershaft Ultimate 2 OP17 on Stillpoint Minis, SilenZio v.2 Audio by -E- Media Server (running ROON), GigaFoil v4, Keces P3 with Ghent PC, 9 M Supra Cat 8+ and 0.65 M Revelation audio ethernet cables.

Other - 2 Stillpoint Apertures, GIK Bass Traps, Vicoustics Waveguide panels, Shunyata Alpha Clock 75 1.5 meter BNC, Shunyata Alpha 1.5 meter USB, WW Gold Eclipse 7 SCs, WW Silver Electra 7 PCs, WW Silver Eclipse ICs; 3 X 20 Amp Power lines, PS Audio P10 & Dectet, 3 Sound Anchor stands, Powerports and numerous Noise Harvesters. Furutech Flex 50, Cable risers, HRS dampeners

TV Room Audio - Panasonic TC-P60GT50, McIntosh MX-121, MC7106, Revel F52 & C32, B&W LM1, Sonos Connect\W4S Remedy\iFI 9V Power, WW & Kimber cables, PS Audio Dectet
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Old 04-21-2019, 08:32 PM
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So, my place in N.H. is out in the middle of the woods. Our only carrier for internet offers DSL. Not ideal for high end audio, but it's what I have. My digital front end has been a Lumin S-1 streaming Tidal. I had never heard of switches, filters, or LPS.
After reading up on this a bit, I decided to order an AQ Diamond ethernet cable, Gigafoil, and a Keces P3 LPS, and a Lumin L-1 to use as a NAS for DSD files.
All I can say right now, is wow! Dead quiet background, much better separation of instruments, a much more organic, and coherent sound, and the bass is much cleaner. I am truly shocked by the difference. I will post more when I can tear myself away the music!
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  #4  
Old 04-28-2019, 11:22 PM
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Today I repurposed a PS Audio ($50.00) receptacle outlet I had to the cheap Home Depot receptacle in my mechanical room where my Arris Surfboard 10/100/1000 modem resides.

It may be a coincidence but things got quieter, will need to validate this.

I have a better than cheap distribution ($75?) plugged into the PS Audio receptacle, and from the power cable into the first receptacle is a PS Audio Noise Harvester ($75.00), then a Shunyata plug in conditioner ($199.00) then the Nordost Red Dawn ($400) feeding a Keces P8 ($699) that runs Ghent Gotham cables ($100 each) to the modem and switch. I use Audio Quest Vodka RJ45s until the AQVox SE switch.

Very happy with these results, and posting this for people to think about the front end and how you can go at in pieces.

Starting over, I would change the outlet first, where I did this dead last.

It all matters has been has been my experience and none of this is anywhere near the crazy costs once you get into the music room where the 2 channel resides.
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Power Conditioning, Filters & Switch: Nordost QRT Power Product Line, Furutech GTX-D NCF/GTX 105D, 20 AMP Dedicated w/Surge Protection, AQVox SE switch, Keces LPS P3ís & P8 w/Nordost AC power and Ghent DC cables for Gigafoil v4, modem, routers, switches & Stillpoints.
Cables, Isolation, Room Treatment: Nordost Supreme Reference (Odin) Distribution, Reference Line (Valhalla 2) Components and Speakers, Ansuz C2, HRS M3X Platforms & Damping Plates. Stillpointís Ultra 6/SS and Vicoustic Room Treatments
Power & Sound: DíAgostino Pre-Amplifier to DíAgostino Momentum Monoís driving Wilson Alexiaís
Source and Digital: Aurender N10, Brinkmann Nyquist MKII
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  #5  
Old 05-19-2019, 10:41 PM
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Default Front end digital foundation

Since the outlet, I changed out the power distribution for the new Audioquest 3 and purchased a lower offering Audioquest NGR power cable to run to the Keces P8.

I then took the Audioquest cable out and threw in an Anuz C power cable, retail was like $5K.

The Ansuz cable brought things to a new level of darkness but I was losing a little bit of sound - it proved to be too much, so I popped back the Nordost Red Dawn, a Copper stranded cable and it turned out being slightly better the Audioquest, and think the Audioquest is not fully burnt.

I put the Ansuz back on the Transport and compared it with Red Dawn, and musically Red Dawn won yet again. IMO the Ansuz is better fitted for hungry amps, and now it makes sense to me what Shunyata does in their offerings. I did put the Ansuz back on the Transport because with Apple TV the picture steps up huge.

Then today I popped out the Ultra SS from under my AQVoxSE switch and things went well instantly downhill, popped the SS back in and the music came being livelier, like in a big way.

All this was witnessed by a local audio guru that has way more experience then Iíll probably ever have - we were both astounded.

In short, if your going to use streaming, you can get hell of a lot more out of the front end by using the disciplines we all know in the main system.
__________________
Power Conditioning, Filters & Switch: Nordost QRT Power Product Line, Furutech GTX-D NCF/GTX 105D, 20 AMP Dedicated w/Surge Protection, AQVox SE switch, Keces LPS P3ís & P8 w/Nordost AC power and Ghent DC cables for Gigafoil v4, modem, routers, switches & Stillpoints.
Cables, Isolation, Room Treatment: Nordost Supreme Reference (Odin) Distribution, Reference Line (Valhalla 2) Components and Speakers, Ansuz C2, HRS M3X Platforms & Damping Plates. Stillpointís Ultra 6/SS and Vicoustic Room Treatments
Power & Sound: DíAgostino Pre-Amplifier to DíAgostino Momentum Monoís driving Wilson Alexiaís
Source and Digital: Aurender N10, Brinkmann Nyquist MKII

Last edited by For The Love of Music; 05-19-2019 at 10:44 PM.
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Old 05-19-2019, 11:36 PM
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Well, looks like a Giga, P3 and AQ Diamond are in my future....

Jacob
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Old 05-20-2019, 09:21 AM
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I too decided to start a new language and purchase a Keces, a Gigafoil and a Resolution Audio Ethernet cable.
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Main room - Sonus Faber Stradivari, JL Audio F113v2 & CR-1 Crossover, McIntosh MC2301 Amplifiers with Stillpoint Ultra SS feet, McIntosh C1100 on Stillpoint Minis, Esoteric K-03X on Stillpoint Minis, Cybershaft Ultimate 2 OP17 on Stillpoint Minis, SilenZio v.2 Audio by -E- Media Server (running ROON), GigaFoil v4, Keces P3 with Ghent PC, 9 M Supra Cat 8+ and 0.65 M Revelation audio ethernet cables.

Other - 2 Stillpoint Apertures, GIK Bass Traps, Vicoustics Waveguide panels, Shunyata Alpha Clock 75 1.5 meter BNC, Shunyata Alpha 1.5 meter USB, WW Gold Eclipse 7 SCs, WW Silver Electra 7 PCs, WW Silver Eclipse ICs; 3 X 20 Amp Power lines, PS Audio P10 & Dectet, 3 Sound Anchor stands, Powerports and numerous Noise Harvesters. Furutech Flex 50, Cable risers, HRS dampeners

TV Room Audio - Panasonic TC-P60GT50, McIntosh MX-121, MC7106, Revel F52 & C32, B&W LM1, Sonos Connect\W4S Remedy\iFI 9V Power, WW & Kimber cables, PS Audio Dectet
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Old 05-25-2019, 09:59 AM
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F#@K - Itís the Tweaker, Audio Junkie updating my latest improvements to support streaming!

Running through my last combinations is not to get a different sound but better results or back it goes.

By applying this practice, I have reversed a few trials simply as they emitted poor SQ results.

Iím gonna let my recent changes settle over the weekend, and donít want to be fooled like the Ansuz did to me mentioned a few posts up, but as I process what I am hearing, I would be embarrassed to stand up if friends were over unless they were a couple of blonds.

Hereís what I did;

I moved my AQVox SE switch from the Music room to the Mechanical room, sitting on a hunk of Marble.

IMG_2002.jpg

It now connects a 15M generic Cat 6 cable to the Gigafoil v4 in the music room and also connects the main network switch supplying Cat 5 through the home, the results are even crazier on Apple TVs around the home, faster load, and stunning graphics.

The Keces P3 in the Music Room now sits on Stillpoints Ultra SS versus the Stillpoints Minis - no change to the previous AC/DC cable updates.

In the Mechanical room, the AQVox SE sits on Ultra SS, now with bases, next to the Keces P8 that is only used to power the Arris Surfboard modem and a Netgear switch feeding the home other than the Music Room.

The AQVoxSe connects the Netgear home switch with a AQVox top of the line Ethernet cable - no change to the previous AC/DC cable updates.

I moved the Shunyata Defender power conditioner to the PS Audio outlet, that sits above the Audioquest 3 Distribution hard wire cable/plug.

IMG_1998.jpg

I am waiting for my new 15M Shielded Belden Ethernet cable with German Matrix Shielded termination plugs to arrive late next week, plus a new 1M Gotham, both are being made by Ghent for $375.00 total.

The new Ethernet cable will replace the Generic Cat 6 Ethernet, this will tell us if the Gigafoil benefits from a better cable, I think it has a chance, but will be patient and take a listen. From the Gigafoil, thereís no change using Nordosts top of the line Heimdell.

Iíll use the existing 15M Generic Cat 6 fed from the AQVox SE to hook up a new Netgear switch in the Music Room tnst will feed Apple TV and Oppo using Nordost Heimdell cables. The Netgear will be powered by the second rail of the Keces P3 using a new Ghent Gotham DC 1M cable, and I will ground the Netgear switch with a Nordost QKore cable giving it a better then average start - eventually, Iíll Stillpoints the switch and ultimately replace it with Audio grade as the performance is hard to beat once I see the picture on the TV.

After all this, Iíll wait for KingRexs installation of a dedicated circuit in the mechanical room to happen whenever and stick a fork in it, itís Salmon season for me and my focus will be on this years bounty that pays for all of this.

Happy Listening 🤺
__________________
Power Conditioning, Filters & Switch: Nordost QRT Power Product Line, Furutech GTX-D NCF/GTX 105D, 20 AMP Dedicated w/Surge Protection, AQVox SE switch, Keces LPS P3ís & P8 w/Nordost AC power and Ghent DC cables for Gigafoil v4, modem, routers, switches & Stillpoints.
Cables, Isolation, Room Treatment: Nordost Supreme Reference (Odin) Distribution, Reference Line (Valhalla 2) Components and Speakers, Ansuz C2, HRS M3X Platforms & Damping Plates. Stillpointís Ultra 6/SS and Vicoustic Room Treatments
Power & Sound: DíAgostino Pre-Amplifier to DíAgostino Momentum Monoís driving Wilson Alexiaís
Source and Digital: Aurender N10, Brinkmann Nyquist MKII
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Old 06-08-2019, 01:14 PM
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Hello Everyone!

Following up on my reporting; hereís what I did in my last stages of configuration.

Prior:

P8 > Arris Modem - 12v > Heimdell 2 > Eeros Router > Heimdell 2 > AQ Vox SE - SMPS > Belden 1303 Catsnake Cat 6/Ghent 15M > Gigafoil > AQ Diamond > Aurender N10

Current:

P8 > Arris Modem 12v > AQ Diamond > Eeros Router > AQ Vodka > AQ Vox SE > Belden 1303 Catsnake Cat 6/Ghent 15M > Gigafoil > AQ Vodka > Aurender N10

Hereís what Iíve learned on how my system responded to the changes;

- Placing the AQ Diamond from the modem to the router and using AQ Vodka from the router to the AQVox SE switch brought a greater sense of overall sound. Darkness was enhanced, a very natural timbre embodied the instruments, benefitting high, mid and low range. Adding Vodka from Gigafoil to the Aurender N10 sealed the deal!

- A better grade cable between the switch and Gigafoil brought the effects mentioned above improved in a similar manner just at a step below, and for clarity it was not subtle.

- Connecting three other rooms direct from the home network to the AQVox SE to the switch with the cable setup increased picture clarity and benefited the sound at a crazy level.

- The AQ Diamond and Vodka loom out performed my Nordost Heimdell 2ís, Iím not repurposing them elsewhere, they will be posted for sale. Note: Nordost are excellent, but Iím going SOtM and between AQ and the SOtM options having optional silver cable in the build and their DC cables will be I believe will be a better match.

- I noticed cables need a bit of settling when moving burned in chords around in your system, time depends on each application but in a much shorter window.

Future upgrade paths:

- Dedicated Circuit in mechanical room for modem and switch.

- SOtM switch with clock and modified cabling and SOtM LPS

- AQ Diamond cables between router and switch and Gigafoil to N10
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Power Conditioning, Filters & Switch: Nordost QRT Power Product Line, Furutech GTX-D NCF/GTX 105D, 20 AMP Dedicated w/Surge Protection, AQVox SE switch, Keces LPS P3ís & P8 w/Nordost AC power and Ghent DC cables for Gigafoil v4, modem, routers, switches & Stillpoints.
Cables, Isolation, Room Treatment: Nordost Supreme Reference (Odin) Distribution, Reference Line (Valhalla 2) Components and Speakers, Ansuz C2, HRS M3X Platforms & Damping Plates. Stillpointís Ultra 6/SS and Vicoustic Room Treatments
Power & Sound: DíAgostino Pre-Amplifier to DíAgostino Momentum Monoís driving Wilson Alexiaís
Source and Digital: Aurender N10, Brinkmann Nyquist MKII
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Old 06-09-2019, 09:59 PM
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Grounding is Performance!

I moved my AQVox SE switch out of music room into my mechanical room when I redid my front end, and when I did this, I lost the benefit of the passive grounding connection from the Nordost QKore 6, or so I thought.

All was not lost, the AQVox SE has a grounding terminal on the power side of the switch. Lucky for me, right behind the switch is the connection box for cable coming into the home, and this includes a grounding cable and connection coming from the outside.

I went to Home Depot and purchased 2í of 6 gauge solid Copper for $1.40. The plan was to create two loops and screw it in to both the switch and the grounding post in the connection box.

On the drive home I thought to myself there was no way the screw had enough thread to wrap around 6 gauge, and I was right. Then it hit me, copper is soft, so hammer down each end flat, drill two holes and mount - it worked, and boy did it!

Prior, KingRex ran a grounding line from the sub panel to great effect, but there was a slight hum on the Aurender N10 that you had to get close to hear, itís now gone. The tweeter and midís on the Wilson Alexias emitted a faint electrical noise where again you had to get up close to it to hear, itís now gone. My system is quiet from stem to stern.

Whatís odd is even music stored on the Aurender hard drive even sounds significantly better.

Iím hearing black, meaning no noise. Instruments and vocals sound open, smooth and simply amazing and more parts embedded are coming out and clearly pronounced. I always use a handful of songs to critique what I am listening for.

The takeaway:

- Addressing grounding from outside the dedicated circuit is equally as important, meaning network gear.
- As good as the AQVox SE switch is, noise still gets to the switch whether itís in the line, caused upstream by the modem and router or the switch itself.
- If you have a grounding screw on your switch seriously consider using it!
- I have lost nothing in sound quality, everything now is sounding better than when the switch was connected to QKore 6, I mean night and day.

If I was better at fabricating or perhaps more patient I could have made the flattened terminations more professional. The one in the cabinet in particular but it will never see the light of day, so FK it, Iím done!


IMG_2052.jpgImage1560131941.254119.jpgIMG_2054.jpg
__________________
Power Conditioning, Filters & Switch: Nordost QRT Power Product Line, Furutech GTX-D NCF/GTX 105D, 20 AMP Dedicated w/Surge Protection, AQVox SE switch, Keces LPS P3ís & P8 w/Nordost AC power and Ghent DC cables for Gigafoil v4, modem, routers, switches & Stillpoints.
Cables, Isolation, Room Treatment: Nordost Supreme Reference (Odin) Distribution, Reference Line (Valhalla 2) Components and Speakers, Ansuz C2, HRS M3X Platforms & Damping Plates. Stillpointís Ultra 6/SS and Vicoustic Room Treatments
Power & Sound: DíAgostino Pre-Amplifier to DíAgostino Momentum Monoís driving Wilson Alexiaís
Source and Digital: Aurender N10, Brinkmann Nyquist MKII
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