Stuck a Linear Power Supply on My Switch - Blimey! 😱

Specifically, I have replaced a iFi iPower X (SMPS) on my EtherREGEN with a Farad Super3 (LPS), and flippin’ heck, what a difference. Dare I say it, black box upgrade territory for comparatively little money.

Just more of everything, space, realism, tone and texture. I would say everything is more relaxed (slower), and timing is slightly different from the iPower, which was a little ‘faster’ for want of a better word. PRaT has improved in the small amount of time I have been using the Farad, and who knows, it may be more ‘accurate’ than the iPower in this regard, as I have become accustomed to the PRaT offered by the iPower. Having said that I am now listening to ‘Am I Wrong’ by Keb’ Mo’ and the PRaT seems bang on with the Farad.

What a belter of an upgrade!

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Its a bit baffling really……Just a lot of electrons going to work at the speed of light. But Naim has been doing it for years.
Enjoy.

I do think Naim are missing a trick by ignoring network optimisation, though. OK, they offer us a Core, but that is about it.

They make no comment, nor give any advice about the use of switches, Ethernet cables, SMPSs vs LPSs, etc. Yes, I understand this is a can of worms and very system dependent, but I have heard significant SQ gains from attending to my local network, and firmly believe ignoring this critical part of a music system, can and does significantly compromise the SQ available from even the most modest Naim separates streaming-based systems.

I have found the knowledge and quality of advice on offer from dealers regarding local streaming network optimisation is extremely patchy, with many playing catch-up, or simply very basic to no understanding.

Not sure whether to dive for cover or get the popcorn out!

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Totally agree.

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Two reasons they keep stumm and don’t get into this market:

  1. It is so politicised between bit perfect digital sound quality deniers vs. people who can hear the difference that Naim would lose half their audience and get caught in the (pointless) crossfire.

  2. The effects of various cables, switches and digital network gadgets is often hit and miss, system and electrical environment dependent, and also sometimes subtle in impact on SQ that Naim would get high product return rates and hurt their relationship with many customers.

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Yes, I get that, and dealers are probably better positioned to ‘tailor’ audio network advice to individual customers. But most of the dealers I have tried to engage in network advice are hopeless.

Maybe there is room in Naim’s dealer training programmes to include something about network optimisation. Still tricky though as the success of optimisation initiatives is very often system dependent.

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It’s that time of the week again :partying_face:

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Anyway, great that your new switch psu worked a treat.

Nice one.

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Yes, this could wind up being a very short thread, once the popcorn comes out!

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Now you need 2 more - for your router and your box on the wall where the fibre comes inside your house.

The power supply of the source of the source of the sauce (of the source).

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I did toy with the idea of getting a DC ‘Y’ cable and power both my BT router and the EtherREGEN as they are both 12V and together draw less than 3A, the limit of the Farad. Having asked Farad about this they said it can be done but SQ would be compromised.

So the Farad just powers the EtherREGEN, and I have moved the iFi iPower X from the EtherREGEN to the BT Business Super Hub 2 router.

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Have a Farad3 on my EtherREGEN also.
I previously used a ZeroZero LPS (dual 5v/12v 15W version) but the load was a little too much for this PSU.

The Farad3, with Furutech AC inlet, Orange fuses, Level2 Silver DC cable & Farad Mains cable, was an improvement to the presence, soundstage & noise floor.

I put a Naim PowerLine Lite on my Farad Super3 and have the L2 copper cable on the way! Can’t wait…

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The switch feeding my Nova is powered over ethernet. Confused.com

Yep. Farad 3 here too. Transformational. People are missing out.

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I’m with you @Mike_S transformational for my system as well. @NigelB I also came from the iFI Power elite and the difference was obvious for my system.

I jumped directly to the L2 Copper cable.

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Same here. I got two Farad3 today. One for Lindemann Bridge II and one for EE8. Powerline on both but will experiment a bit with power cables on them.

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Hi there,
You are correct. What I learned in over 5years of continuous network optimisation is that there is a right way of doing it and a myriad of wrong ways. When I say “right way”, what I mean is “a correct methodology” that can be applied to any network, be it Ethernet, Wi-fi or Fibre-optic based. The methodology is a very simple concept that is entirely scalable and can be implemented on any network.
Observation #1 Essentially if you make an improvement somewhere on a network, in order to hear that improvement, it has to pass through the entire network. That means that the network works on a better in = better out basis.
Observation #2. If better in = better out, then logically the opposite applies as well
Observation #3. For an improvement to travel through the network, every single component must be sensitive to the incoming data stream, in that it gives a better output if its input is improved.
So how does the above impact the layout of a network?
Essentially a network is a series of devices that change the format of a bit stream to allow the bitstream to be moved between devices, lets say between the incoming broadband modem and the downstream DAC. The incoming signal may start as a coaxial cable feed (a voltage), get converted to a Ethernet WAN feed (voltage data parcels) to feed a router, then converted to a radio signal for Wi-fi, then maybe back to Ethernet voltage and so on. If you use fibre optic then there are conversions from voltage to light pulses and back. So again based on the above logic, we see that the better the feed into each module, the better the output. So what does “better” mean. A network is built on a series of standards and those standards are divided into different ‘layers’. The layer responsible for moving a data stream from one point to another is called the ‘physical layer’, so what ‘better’ means is simply an improved physical layer. The physical layer is nothing more that a set of specifications to define the physical characteristics of the data stream. So ‘better’ means, ‘as close as possible to the ideal physical layer specification’.
So let’s consider a network layout from a physical layer perspective, remembering better in = better out and its converse. What we see is that for a network to be as successful as possible from a SQ standpoint, the physical layer of each stage must be either as good as or better than the physical layer of the preceding stage. To illustrate, let’s say we add a really good low noise power supply to our router. This make perfect sense IF the following power supplies are as good or better, but all the advantages of the router power supply would be lost if the stream encounters a very noisy supply further down stream. Similarly if a highly accurate clock is used to time the output from a switch, that benefit will be lost if the server receiving that output has a much lower quality clock. You can see from the above that regardless of network topology, a network arranged as a series of improving physical layer specifications will perform far better that one where the physical layer is improved at certain stages and deteriorated at others.
An ideal FOR AUDIO network is one where the physical layer of the data stream is constantly refined as the data stream passes along it.
Im sure you can see from the above why adding say a great power supply somewhere in the network will have highly variable results, depending on what’s further downstream.
There are several further elements that have a MAJOR affect on the SQ of a for-Audio network. Latency, error rates and most important ALL TYPES of noise
A really successful audio network separates the audio stream from the balance of household traffic AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE in the network and continuously refines the data stream by removing as much noise as possible at each and every module. Special attention should be paid to sources of EMI both external and internal
On a final note, non of the above matters a jot if the network is exclusively for IT applications. It only matters when the the data stream is converted to an analog music signal and judged by its resulting sound quality. A ‘bit-perfect’ data stream is the starting point for the above

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I’m sure the Noise Police will chip in shortly with a view on PoE, not sure there’s an Audiophile version of that (ahem).

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Another Farad Super 3 fan here - with EE 8Switch. The more SMPS out of the network the better is my experience.

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