Does optical isolation with basic Fiber Media Converters have an impact?

In my learning process about network bridge streaming as a source I am wondering about the use of simple basic optical isolation with off the shelf units like a couple TP Link converters and a fiberoptic cable placed before the network bridge.

I am aware of the higher end Optical Modules units from Sonore.

I see people doing this with basic hardware. Has this been useful for some?

I did this exact thing (per Lavorgna’s recommendation) and it was well worth the ~$150. I’d describe the most obvious effect as a blacker background out of which sounds can emerge.

I put a $50 iFi power supply on the second fiber converter in the chain.

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The theory is sound but I suspect the power supplies and components of the less expensive transceivers are the source of noise we wish to eliminate.

I believe and feel by listening that an SFP in a switch to a PCI-e fiber NIC is a better way to go presuming the switch and primarily the host with the NIC have decent power supplies. The latter being by far the most impactful to sound quality.

That said, the older 100Mbps devices tend to be favored by many. Cheap and easy to try. I you have ground loops impacting the Ethernet, optical will certainly do away with the path.

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Exact same thing as well…

Was a long time ago…the benefit was subtle and worth it at the time.


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Indeed, I think the DSD requires a 100Mbps switch and won’t comport with 1000Mbps.

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I have a similar arrangement taking data from my modem to the server. The sending end uses an ifi 9v power unit and the receiving end uses a sotm 9v battery unit, only because I get it very cheap. The optical cable is 25m.
It’s the sort of thing to do and forget about.



I think to realize much gain from the fiber isolation the noisy bridge needs to be done away with.

I will be using a Sonore UltraRendu with a LPS as my network bridge.

When you guys state 100Mbps do you mean one like this??

Yes. Fast Ethernet = 100Mbps.

Am curious- why is this better converter for these purposes than the 1000 Mbps ones?

Also- confused about what cable works.
I see some of these units are designated as multi mode, and others as single mode.
Is their a specific mulit mode cable vs single mode cable??

The chip running at a slower clock rate produces less noise, potentially

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Thanks Brett.

I added a question in last post while you were replying about multi vs single mode and cables.

Yes, the cables are specific however a multi mode cable will often work with single mode transceivers but not the other way around. Best to keep the mode correct.

Single mode can go many kilometers and is really not needed at all for our use however they are built to a tighter tolerance as the beam is MUCH more precise. Some feel SM sounds better but I wouldn’t bet in a blind bake off.

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I’m kind of with you on this, Brett. Some audiophiles have gone so far as to use ZX SFP SM transceivers for these audio links. These are long haul SM devices, with transmitters that are outputting 0 dBm. For the short distances used by people like us, the power would easily overload the receiver on the other end. Yet some claim that, overload notwithstanding, they sound better. :man_shrugging:

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It’s cheap and easy to add attenuation to try them but yeah overloading will just cause packets to resend. is a good source. I’ve used their house brand sfp for years with great success. Cisco serial compliant too.

Sure enough, but what is the value of going that route over just an SX or LX module? This is where (to me, anyway) some of the audiophile thinking starts getting a little weird.

I say this only as an engineer who’s worked with all types of fiber optic solutions over the years.

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I’m right there with you. I have access to all forms and have tried them and they all sound great to me.

Sounds very weird to me.

Here’s some useful advice.

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