Sotm motherboard (dedicated for audio)

This is pretty interesting:

I was told they are also going to release a new complete audio server soon also…

Another way to pick your pockets…

You know, I made a joke some time back but as time goes on it’s becoming less of a joke.

If you think your server (Be it Roon, JRiver, Audirvana, what have you) is producing “noise” do the following experiment…

Take the machine to your neighbors house. Attach it back to your wifi. Now the machine isn’t even plugged into your mains and is electrically isolated from your system. Hear a difference?

If you do hear an improvement then something like an “audiophile grade” motherboard should be on your wish-list or just leave the machine at your neighbors. If you hear no difference something like this isn’t helping you.

mm, motherboards, streamers and DACs produce noise and lowering this noise by choosing the right components is also something Taiko and PinkFaun and the likes are doing.

So, I do not fully understand your septicisms…

My music server is in another room on a different power circuit isolated from my Roon Endpoint (ultraRendu) by Ethernet.

The server is not affecting my DAC……

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aha, that is a different setup than I have…

My setup is: music pc (with LPS) > switch > sotm sms 200 Ultra Neo > PSA DS Sr…

I found out that everyhing in my digital chain could be improved by:

  • better sotm Ethernet cables (less noise in especially older recordings)
  • Audioquest 1200 power filter (for the audio pc & switch) (more body in the sound)
  • better Crystal Cable USB cable (a huge difference in musicality and timing)

You have to understand what “noise” we’re talking about here and how it interacts with the parts of the chain that matter. For example, moving a server to another room and using Wifi on your streamer / renderer effectively decouples any noise in the server from impacting sound quality (noisy electricity out of the wall notwithstanding). Now, Wifi may introduce new issues on its own but if you’re concerned about “server noise” then Wifi is the cheap way to eliminate it hence the experiment of hauling the thing next door.

Stop plugging the server into the DAC directly and a lot of these noise experiments simply go away.

I have a few bits of audio gear where the ethernet PHY on the device isn’t properly isolated. That’s a problem with the device not a “noise” issue requiring me to spend an equiv amount to fix a poor design. I just stop using that gear. It sounds like, going forward, PS gear has upped the design focus on ethernet PHY isolation.

Sorry but these kinds of statements don’t align with the way my understanding of how the universe works. Bits are bits in this case. That’s not to say nice cables and audiophile grade switches don’t make a difference; I’m in the firm camp that they can. However, the difference they make will be the same across all recordings. This is because the areas of the chain where they are (may be) providing benefit are at a layer that doesn’t know the bits are music. None of this stuff is influencing sound quality based upon what one is listening to; its influencing everything on the wire equally. It’s very much an all or nothing because on that side of the chain we’re still digital. Yes, noise can be carried through the system at this point but my point is that noise isn’t going to be influenced by what genre of music you’re listening to.

Anyway, after reading years of forum posts and informally correlating those that go through heroics of upgrading the digital side of their chain my conclusion is simply poor USB and ethernet PHY implementations at those points in the chain. Those have improved over the years lending to a closer 50/50 split of “it matters” vs. “it doesn’t matter”. I hope the new Octave streamer stuff and the new USB implementation on the DAC firmly puts more in the “it doesn’t matter” camp. Other manufacturers have gotten there so I hope PS can as well.

In the end… whatever brings more pleasure to the experience is worth every penny.

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Same set-up I have. I went a step further and bought a PoE powered switch for the media room so the ethernet in the listening room isn’t on the same circuit as the audio gear and is DC powered. Did I notice a difference? If you A/B tested me I would lie if I told you I was doing something other than guessing.