SOtM sNH-10G Network Switches x2 : The NEW KING of USB/Network Gadget Setup

I wrote a thread about 3 months ago : The Best USB/Network Gadget Setup I have auditioned in 2018 : SOtM+Cybershaft+Uptone.
https://www.whatsbestforum.com/thre...itioned-in-2018-sotm-cybershaft-uptone.27025/

It has been surpassed in just 3 months' time!
I listened to the following setup last night :


20190328_214455_2.jpg

Most of the components used are the same : Cybershaft Limited2 OP20 10M clock, SOtM tx-USBultra usb conditioner, Habst 5N Silver Cryo clock cables & coaxial digital cables; Lessloss C-Marc Supercord with Firewall 64X module, Chord Blu2 for upscaling before entering a Chord DAVE dac ...etc
Please refer to my previous post.

The only difference was that TWO SOtM sNH-10G Network Switches were used.
These audiophile switches have got SFP sockets for optical transceivers.
So they were linked up in-series by a single-mode optical cable.
20190328_214706_2.jpg

The Cybershaft Limited OP20 has three 10M clock outputs so the two SOtM switches and one SOtM tx-USBultra were clocked/syned by it.

The effect is phenomenal!
Once we have heard the dual-switches config, nobody are willing to go back to single-switch config!

The sonic improvement was in every aspects but most importantly the background quietness.
Suddenly much much more could be heard and the sound becomes so natural.

I am not a tech guy but I speculate that the optical connection has isolated most if not all of the noise coming from the CAS components & home network.

The two SOtM switches and the tx-USBultra clocked/syned by the extremely accurate Cybershaft 10M clock may be acting as reclockers.
An analogy may be the tweak of cascading/stacking multiple Mutec MC3+ together (https://www.mutec-net.com/artikel.php?id=1388254422).

My friends and I also did the following comparison : One SOtM switch+Cybershaft Clock vs Two SOtM switches (no Cybershaft Clock).
We found that the latter performed better! The sound was more natural.

If I can get hold of more SOtM sNH-10G Switches, I will try using three or four of them together for sure!
But of course I expect the Law of Diminishing Returns will kick in.

Anyway I am confident to say that this Dual-SOtM Switches is currently the best CAS network setup I have ever encountered.
 

Comments

Jan 21, 2018
61
39
18
Lexington, KY
#21
We did compare that aspect too.
In general if employing optical fibers directly to the server/endpoint, the sound is less musical than using a good ethernet cable auch as Vertere or Dalby Audio Meda.

However the reverse is true for the connection between the two switches.
On the surface, it seems like the cybershaft clocking on the switches is a benefit that is missing when directly connecting the servers via copper or fiber.
 

CKKeung

Well-Known Member
Jun 18, 2011
1,080
206
63
Hong Kong
#22
Thank You! , that makes perfect sense now.

Do you still prefer the 2 server setup vs the single server, ala Evo, Extreme or Memory Player route?
Or Maybe you are a 2x extreme server setup fan ...! :)
If one keeps adding clocks, switches, Cables, LPS, Footers and USB conditioners, then the Extreme or MP
become equal in cost at some point!
Again, I love that you are able to gather so much equipment for all this testing, very valuable!
Although Emile of SGM told me that his servers were so well designed and built that a 2-desktop config would not bring about additional benefit, I am eagerly waiting for the chance to apply Innuos Statement or SGM EVO/Extreme that way.
:rolleyes:
 

Sablon Audio

Industry Expert, VIP Donor
May 22, 2015
523
106
43
#24
Although Emile of SGM told me that his servers were so well designed and built that a 2-desktop config would not bring about additional benefit, I am eagerly waiting for the chance to apply Innuos Statement or SGM EVO/Extreme that way.
:rolleyes:
And it’s true CKK! Emile and I have known each other for almost a decade and his own dual pc set up of @4 years ago was easily usurped by the ‘SGM’ prototype. That’s not to say that a dual evo / extreme couldn’t be made to sound better however 99% of people will have lower hanging fruit elsewhere in their system / network environment as your other post on the dual switches will confirm.
 

asiufy

Member Sponsor
Jul 8, 2011
3,095
208
63
San Diego, CA
almaaudio.com
#25

CKKeung

Well-Known Member
Jun 18, 2011
1,080
206
63
Hong Kong
#26

Taiko Audio

Active Member
Feb 10, 2017
398
193
43
The Netherlands
taikoaudio.com
#27
CK,

How many ports of which types are active on switch 1 and on switch 2?

I have noticed big improvements myself from adding additional switches and making sure the last one only has the 2 (up/down) mandatory ports active.

I have also noticed that increased switch processing power increases sound quality.

% loaded surely seems to be a factor here.
 

CKKeung

Well-Known Member
Jun 18, 2011
1,080
206
63
Hong Kong
#28
CK,

How many ports of which types are active on switch 1 and on switch 2?

I have noticed big improvements myself from adding additional switches and making sure the last one only has the 2 (up/down) mandatory ports active.
I have also noticed that increased switch processing power increases sound quality.
% loaded surely seems to be a factor here.
Hello Emile,
It seems that you have tested every possible tweaks already. Haha

Yes, I agree with you that the less are plugged into the switches, the better the sound.
 

Taiko Audio

Active Member
Feb 10, 2017
398
193
43
The Netherlands
taikoaudio.com
#29
I have my internet router connected to a switch, which has 2 other switches connected, 1 switch connects to the music server, the other connects to the office network and the wireless router.

The internet router has wireless connectivity too but I have disabled that (sounds better).

I have replaced the music server switch with a FMC which seems to be comparable but have not done an extensive A/B between the 2 yet.

The annoying bit is all the power supplies needed!
 

Taiko Audio

Active Member
Feb 10, 2017
398
193
43
The Netherlands
taikoaudio.com
#30
Pls make sure to select the 12V dc input version. The sound is slightly better.
This is definitely true when the downstream regulator is a high efficiency switching type as it will lower the current draw.
 

CKKeung

Well-Known Member
Jun 18, 2011
1,080
206
63
Hong Kong
#31
I have my internet router connected to a switch, which has 2 other switches connected, 1 switch connects to the music server, the other connects to the office network and the wireless router.

The internet router has wireless connectivity too but I have disabled that (sounds better).

I have replaced the music server switch with a FMC which seems to be comparable but have not done an extensive A/B between the 2 yet.

The annoying bit is all the power supplies needed!
It's common situation in an office.

Yes, WiFi is very detrimental and should be disabled whenever possible.

I think the switch connected directly to your CAS server should have all other sockets disabled/emptied.
Does it and the upstream switch have SFP sockets?
 

Taiko Audio

Active Member
Feb 10, 2017
398
193
43
The Netherlands
taikoaudio.com
#32
It's common situation in an office.

Yes, WiFi is very detrimental and should be disabled whenever possible.

I think the switch connected directly to your CAS server should have all other sockets disabled/emptied.
Does it and the upstream switch have SFP sockets?
Yes, but I have yet to test switching the entire "backbone" to SFP. So much to do, so short on time!
 

CKKeung

Well-Known Member
Jun 18, 2011
1,080
206
63
Hong Kong
#33
Yes, but I have yet to test switching the entire "backbone" to SFP. So much to do, so short on time!
What do you mean by "the whole backbone"?

I found that optical ethernet connection, no matter how good the transceivers and optical fiber are, is rather plain and unmusical when compared to good ethernet cables such as Vertere or Dalby Audio Meda.

The only exception is between two SOtM switches.
 

Taiko Audio

Active Member
Feb 10, 2017
398
193
43
The Netherlands
taikoaudio.com
#34
What do you mean by "the whole backbone"?

I found that optical ethernet connection, no matter how good the transceivers and optical fiber are, is rather plain and unmusical when compared to good ethernet cables such as Vertere or Dalby Audio Meda.

The only exception is between two SOtM switches.
I mean between the switches.
That is interesting, I actually felt the same till I tried the Startech SFP1000ZXST (80km). I don't have Vertere nor Dalby ethernet cables though!
 
Aug 10, 2015
40
8
8
#35
I have done the double Sotm switches with 10M masterclocked connected via Dalby Meda ad powered by the Hynes SR5 DR.

I found it did objectively improve a level or 2 and not the configuration of optical between the 2 as i didn't have the extra fibre and transceivers. I was good, but i didn't miss just with a single switch fed via optical from another clocked Media converter.

The accuracy added more "Hifiness" which was immediately identifiable within 15 seconds of a track, more open, dynamic, clearer,

It did however add more sterility to the music and;without the 2nd Sotm switch gives a fuller and natural sound which i find more musical.

So it did'nt take and to identify the "feel" of the musical flow and do not want more clutter of equipments etc.

Rather, i may revisit the configuration in future to replace my 1st Fibre media converter to the current Sotm switch which is connected 8 meters away, outside my listening room.

This was what i wanted to test, it would be fed by a spare rubidium 10M clock and a Hynes PSU as well.

But not in any hurry with the daunting task to set such a configuration up which will be my end game networking setup if and when i do so.

I did try also an multiple fibre 25M clocked fibre converter before the Sotm, it was different yet again, even fuller but no less or more musical and content with a simpler, less cluttered setup with different power supplies and extra connections all over.

I believe due to the extensive networking tweaks i have done, i can now use either my NAD streamer or W20 which the NAD, though loses to the W20 overall, just as musically satisfying but offers much more music streaming services available at my fingertips.

I might add that i have been using multiple ocxo clocked switches for quite some time.

Contented with just 1 for now, bth 10M clocked. I would not even consider adding without BOTH being 10M clocked.

First unit with just the sclk ex without 10M did not light any fires for me.

IMG-20190221-WA0001.jpg
 
Last edited:
Likes: CKKeung
#36
I am trying out the SOtM switch today and comparing it to my modded router. Kamal is a friend of mine, so he is bringing one over. Previously I found my modded router with modded Hynes LPS to sound identical to the AQVOX switch with wall-wart.

I found the following configuration to be optimum and many of my customers do exactly this:

Switch -> 0.5m Wireworld Platinum Ethernet cable -> EMO EN-70e isolator -> SOtM Ethernet cable with filter -> Ethernet renderer/interface

I already use the tx-USBUtra on my USB, which is direct from a Mac Mini. This made a big difference. I power it from my modded Hynes LPS as well. IMO, the stock Hynes is too slow for digital, so I mod it to speed up the regulation response.

Do you use two switches in your system because each services a different computer or does the first switch only drive the second switch?
 
Aug 10, 2015
40
8
8
#37
You cannot replace the router with a switch, unless yiubare using your router as a layer 2 device, i.e just for its switching capability.

What mods have you done to the router?

As a X2 switch, they are connected in series acting as a form or double reclocking or daisy chaining.

There is a diagram i came accross on Sotms site on using 2 swiches connected via fibre which is recommended for improved sonic results.

Why not just add it before or after your router to see if there are still any improvements.

I would expect the Sotm to make a nice improvement.

However a router is modded in its original casing, it cannot reach the level of the Sotm, well maybe if the router has been extensively operated on and likely is a totally new housing to accomodate all the hardware improvements and additions together witn reclocking components used in your reclocker

A highly properly modded switch i find, may be comparable to a base Sotm switch, but once a 10m reference comes into the picture with your favouritebaudiophile clock cable, it then leaves any modded switch in the dust.

Possibly, a modded switch or router with the sck ex board and 10M clocking, things may get interesting.

I have not come across anyone doing so, it takes real estate to incorporate and akin to a heart transplant type surgery on the router, possibly you would be the first to be able to perform such on your router?
 

spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
7,815
604
113
E. England
#38
When people are confused why I'm skeptical about streaming and don't have the foggiest what to do, and what all these boxes do...I point them to threads like this and say I don't even know the things that I don't know about computer audio.

Donald Rumsfeld's known unknowns and unknown unknowns come to mind.

Why can't we just plug an ethernet cable from the router out of the wall into ONE black box server and a USB cable into a dac? Why does it have to be as difficult as this thread?

Or am I as usual missing something obvious?
 
Aug 10, 2015
40
8
8
#39
When people are confused why I'm skeptical about streaming and don't have the foggiest what to do, and what all these boxes do...I point them to threads like this and say I don't even know the things that I don't know about computer audio.

Donald Rumsfeld's known unknowns and unknown unknowns come to mind.

Why can't we just plug an ethernet cable from the router out of the wall into ONE black box server and a USB cable into a dac? Why does it have to be as difficult as this thread?

Or am I as usual missing something obvious?
You will, once you get into streaming;)

Look forward to you posts when your router and little additional boxes get put on Statcores.
 

spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
7,815
604
113
E. England
#40
But these threads deter me.
Erm, Stacore done, alas.
 
Last edited:

About us

  • What’s Best Forum is THE forum for high end audio, product reviews, advice and sharing experiences on the best of everything else. A place where audiophiles and audio companies discuss existing and new audio products, music servers, music streamers and computer audio, digital to audio convertors (DACS), turntables, phono stages, cartridges, reel to reel, speakers, headphones, tube amplifiers and solid state amplification. Founded in 2010 What's Best Forum invites intelligent and courteous people of all interests and backgrounds to describe and discuss the best of everything. From beginners to life-long hobbyists to industry professionals we enjoy learning about new things and meeting new people and participating in spirited debates.

Quick Navigation

User Menu

Steve Williams
Site Founder | Site Owner | Administrator
Ron Resnick
Site Co-Owner | Administrator
Julian (The Fixer)
Website Build | Marketing Managersing