A couple of years ago, based on suggestions here, I got an Airport Extreme. Sound quality was indeed better than the switch from the office store and I have been happy. The AE is fed by an ethernet cable that comes from my router located elsewhere in the house, and I run it in bridged mode (as a switch). It also supplies my wifi signal. I got an external PS for the AE that improved things even more.
For the last few months I have needed five ethernet connections. One of these is for the computer in my audio rack that I use rarely, so I have been unplugging one other cable when I need the computer. A pain but it’s been OK. Now I am about to install a Power Plant and it wants a network connection, so it’s time to fix this.
The obvious solution is to buy another network switch–combined with the AE, that would give me seven connections. But I am suspicious about the SQ of the cheap switches; I also have no place to plug in yet another power supply. (The back of my audio rack is a hairdresser’s nightmare.) I could replace the AE with an 8-port switch but I would lose wifi and perhaps impact the SQ.
So: any suggestions for more-capable (and good-sounding) alternatives to the AE, or any good tricks to get a couple more connections?