Optical isolation or upgrade to Switch, or both? What have people heard and think

I have the Sonore Rendu Signature SE and love the sound. As of right now its feeding my modified DSD DAC. But I have been reading a ton of improvements that updating the switch can have. But most of these are from people with direct input from internet via ethernet to their streamer. Questions for people:

  1. Have others seen improvements with these very expensive switches (and of course the LPS and Power cords)?
  2. People with Sonore or other optical isolation streaming, have you tried them and seen improvements?
  3. What network switching improvements were used in the above examples? etherregen etc…

I am one wondering if this is something I should invest in and try, as well as if I go with AirLens (which I really want to put up against my sonore) it does not do optical, so what would help that device. I know its going to have isolation built in, but there is always way to help.

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A-Dot optical isolation + Melco S100 with Plixir LPS into Bridge II. It was transformational.
Edit: LAN cables are by Melco (about $90 / 1.0m)

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I like that one. Solves for both streamers and all other equipment that wants network all in one. I have the optical converter already. Would add that, an LPS and feed with optical and both optical and Ethernet out

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in my case and chronological order:

  • 100mbps TPLink ethernet-optical convertors with LPS made huge difference against default connection to my main eth. switch. This was in times I was using Bride2 and I’m optical isolation believer from that moment :slight_smile:

  • EtherRegen with OM deluxe (both powered by Farad3 LPS) replacing above bought 1gpbs into game, but SQ improvement was not as huge additional step as the above isolation itself

  • Tried different ethernet cables between etherregen and streamer and found Pangea to be very nice for reasonable price - keeper for me, but in overall context quite small improvement

  • Replacing “default” optical transceivers and opt. cable with AfterDark’s package (specific Finisar 10gbps modules + nicely dressed optical cable) bought unexpected improvement for Roon streaming. I was using MPD with play for RAM option for critical listening, but now Roon is very close (but still not fully there and I guess it never be with my current streamer).

  • Separate ethernet connection between roon core and streamer (via above chain, just keeping it isolated from my LAN traffic) bough just very small gain in SQ, I guess lower than the Pangea cable for the refference


Interesting. I haven’t done anything with optical convertors and the other items mentioned but I also found the Pangea Premier SE Ethernet cable to sound quite good. It’s got a relaxed, non-edgy sound but still detailed. The one I found to be better (especially in the sound stage), a bit more expensive but still under $100 has been the Inakustik Exzellenz Cat 6 cable based on what I read by @Vmax with my thanks to him.


Which is probably the most important link in the chain.

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That is what my thoughts were on this. But that little birdy in your head is always looking for that next thing that may help and is it worth the money. I have heard from others and reviews that these switches do make a difference. The IT person in me says nay nay, but we all know here what noise can do to these things. Is another $2500-5000 (after LPS/cables etc) to swap out switch worth it? There are now many choices, Nordost, Melco & Synergistic to name a few. I am not sure with the Sonore as its last leg is optical. But with a non optical device would it help? (Airlens etc…). I have isolated my 2 channel pretty good, but I have wondered what is that little ethernet in my P20 adding to all this. Even for my HT side in the same room, the Firecube, Anthem, Oppo and P10 also have ethernet connections. if I do something in that Rack (where my current switch is that also feed the optical and P20) I can do my whole room and have something for the future.

Question for @Serhan on the Melco. I assume one of the optical ports can be the source of the network connection and the other used for a streamer. Is that true?

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LAN to optical converter feeds one of the two optical ports of the Melco. High speed analogue ports on the Melco are connected to Naim Core and Roon Nucleus+, one of the slow ports feeds Bridge II / DSDac. I put the Matrix X Spdif 2 aside ceased using I2S in favour of this setup. I2S is a tad more detailed, but can make me nervous at times.

Talking of birds, crickets and burning pocket holes, after spending this much, if I could set aside $5k for a digital upgrade, I would probably hold on to the cash and change goal posts. Probably save and get a top notch streamer / digital processor that is immune to LAN noise.

And there in lies the issue. Actually with both the Sonore and up coming AirLens… will ether find improvements with a better local switch topology. My Core is now in the rack in room, but my NAS is still upstairs in office. I have UPS up there. Its a SSD so I am not really worried about power losses and head crashes on drives. If I did go Switch route (and its not 5k as I would not go whole hog with power cords) for say 3k with LPS add on, I would have all Roon points in my main listening area on one switch. All be it, there are two switches to get the internet from top floor to basement from router. Nothing is perfect, but I would probably remove all dropouts from Roon by doing this.

The only time I had a Roon dropout was when I connected the core to a 100 mbps port. The moment I switched it to a gigabit port, all was good.

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Yes according to the updated docs (I read they were recently updated) the core should be on the 1G and the streamer on the 100mbps

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