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    The Computer Audiophile

    SOtM Launches sMB-Q370 Motherboard

     

     

    Wow, what a week for product announcements. First HQPlayer integrates Qobuz, then VOX integrates Qobuz, then AURALiC integrates Amazon Music Unlimited. Now, SOtM launches its own motherboard named sMB-Q370. For many audiophiles this will be beyond geeky, but for many others this is really a neat product. Building a motherboard is a huge undertaking to say the least. 

     

    I can't wait to see this one in the wild and to start getting feedback from the Audiophile Style community as more people integrate this motherboard into their systems. Very cool indeed. 

     

    sMB-Q370 Product Page

     

    sMB-Q370 User Manual

     

    MSRP $500

     

    From SOtM:

     

     

    The sMB-Q370 is a high-performance computer motherboard specially designed for audio. Since this product is equipped with an Intel series CPU, it can replace all commonly used computer motherboards.

     

      There is a variety of motherboards and network audio players on the market that meet the high-performance specification and certainly there are a variety of choices too, but the products using these general motherboards are designed simply for fast operation to accomplish processing of large-capacity music files or converting music files to high sampling rates such as DSD. You won’t be able to avoid the limitations of the sound quality, which will be revealed clearly if you use such products as audio players.

     

    Even if the sCLK-EX, tX-USBexp, sNI-1G and others are installed and used on these general motherboards to improve sound quality, the source itself cannot be compared with that of a system using the audio grade motherboard, sMB-Q370.

     

    So, using the sMB-Q370 means starting a new beginning to your listening experience.

     

    You would simply get clear improvements in every aspect of the music including the background, texture, tension, resolution, and location in space of the music with the sMB-Q370 designed exclusively for audio. If you close your eyes and listen to the music, you will feel as if it is the beginning of a new world with the subtle reverberation of instruments resonating in the dark.

     

    In order to implement audio performance that exceeds the limitations of general motherboards in the existing market, the sMB-Q370 has applied a large number of audio parts that have been verified by being used in SOtM products for a long time and is designed to minimize the impact on each element inside the board to reduce noise as much as possible. Although this explanation may seem very simple, it can be said that it is the culmination of the many technologies that SOtM has implemented so far. The very deep and in-depth accumulation of technologies has made this possible.

     

    In addition, the sMB-Q370 has all the features of an existing PC, so everything that was possible with a regular PC can be replaced to the sMB-Q370. A high-performance graphics card, various types of PCI express add-on cards, M.2 NVMe SSD, M.2 Wifi module, M.2 Ethernet port, SATA storage device, etc. can be installed to expand the performance and use of the PC. With this combination of scalability and low noise performance, the sMB-Q370 has no limits in the fields where it is difficult to use general boards, such as mixing and mastering computers for studios and medical devices that require 3D functions.

     

    If you’ve been looking for a high-performance motherboard that has the features you need and meets the best sound quality and performance ever, we can assure you that there’s no need to worry anymore. The best performance, sound quality and expandability, all of these can be realized with the motherboard designed exclusively for audio, sMB-Q370.

     

    Now, it is the time to make the choice that will bring your system to its peak with the sMB-Q370.

     

     

     

    SOtM Motherboard sMB-Q370 01 .jpgSOtM Motherboard sMB-Q370 03.jpg 

    SOtM Motherboard sMB-Q370 05.jpg SOtM Motherboard sMB-Q370 06.jpg




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    Hey Cris thanks for bringing this to our attention. I check their web site and they list no price, do you know how much the board cost? 
        Back in 2014 I built the Pipeline server from your recipe, which is still my main server to this day. Will this board be a easy replacement? Also what CPU would you recommend I get for this board, using HQP?  
       Thank You, Sam 

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    3 minutes ago, shum3s said:

    Hey Cris thanks for bringing this to our attention. I check their web site and they list no price, do you know how much the board cost? 
        Back in 2014 I built the Pipeline server from your recipe, which is still my main server to this day. Will this board be a easy replacement? Also what CPU would you recommend I get for this board, using HQP?  
       Thank You, Sam 

     

    Hi Sam, no pricing yet. I will ask.

     

    This is completely different from the one in Pipeline. You'd need/want new "everything." CPU depends on how you want to cool it and what you want the CPU to do (heavy DSP or no DSP, etc...).

     

    Fun stuff.

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    There's no support for Xeon? It's pretty much dead in the water for me then. Also wonder if a 24/7 operation has similar specs to a server class board.

     

    One good thing the only windows is the LTSC version support, of all Windows for audio, I found that OS to be the least to get in the way SQ wise. 

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    Chris, I would greatly enjoy hearing your own thoughts on this product.  Surely a site owner and proponent of digital audio for over a decade has gained insights and experiences of great value which might be selectively brought forwards in greater numbers.  

     

    What beyond "geeky" "a neat product" and "Very cool indeed" could you in your role justify our interests with before transposing ad copy.  How might you have posited remarkable awareness inviting a sophisticated basis for discussion, examination, or relevance to personal interests?  Astute observations linking developments on this subject across your site seem oddly misplaced.  Particularly when one considers searchable content revealing a high technical level of content ably stated by contributors weighing in on the exact profession they were engaged in.   

     

     

    9th and 8th gen Intel Core Processors place this board numerous years behind currently available options in the Core line.

     

    Choosing Intel is notable.

     

    Board layout and feature sets depicting this as a special market audiophile board is worth examination compared to what is available through mb currently on the market.  

     

    mATX form factor is notable.  Atypical.

     

    Directing attention towards how this board distinguishes itself as the base element of a fanless PC is a demand requiring much much more analysis.

     

     

    If you had cared to address any of the above in current article. I have little doubts as as to whether they would've been appreciated across the entire breadth of Audiophile Style membership and SEO directed interests.

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    2 minutes ago, rando said:

    Chris, I would greatly enjoy hearing your own thoughts on this product.  Surely a site owner and proponent of digital audio for over a decade has gained insights and experiences of great value which might be selectively brought forwards in greater numbers.  

     

    What beyond "geeky" "a neat product" and "Very cool indeed" could you in your role justify our interests with before transposing ad copy.  How might you have posited remarkable awareness inviting a sophisticated basis for discussion, examination, or relevance to personal interests?  Astute observations linking developments on this subject across your site seem oddly misplaced.  Particularly when one considers searchable content revealing a high technical level of content ably stated by contributors weighing in on the exact profession they were engaged in.   

     

     

    9th and 8th gen Intel Core Processors place this board numerous years behind currently available options in the Core line.

     

    Choosing Intel is notable.

     

    Board layout and feature sets depicting this as a special market audiophile board is worth examination compared to what is available through mb currently on the market.  

     

    mATX form factor is notable.  Atypical.

     

    Directing attention towards how this board distinguishes itself as the base element of a fanless PC is a demand requiring much much more analysis.

     

     

    If you had cared to address any of the above in current article. I have little doubts as as to whether they would've been appreciated across the entire breadth of Audiophile Style membership and SEO directed interests.

     

    I don't like to speculate on this stuff because the board literally just came out and I don't like to intimate things like "9th and 8th gen Intel Core Processors place this board numerous years behind currently available options in the Core line" as some sort of negative. 

     

    If I talk to SOtM and get more details about design decisions (and the company is willing to offer this up), I would then be in a better place to render an opinion. Until then, I'm only speculating and making statements for the sake of hearing my own voice. 

     

    Choice of Intel over AMD or Arm isn't notable in the least to me. mATX isn't atypical to me either. 

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    To be fair Chris I did not place words in your mouth.  I made a broadly sweeping critique in the comments section of an article.  Whether you are aware of it or not, I appreciate you taking the time to respond in terms which promote some awareness of outside views. 

     

    After reading and considering what you have wrote.  I would like to point out the difference between opinion and placement of fact in a way that encourages the reader to give thought towards a single piece and the whole.  

     

    Everything matters!  

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    3 minutes ago, rando said:

    To be fair Chris I did not place words in your mouth.  I made a broadly sweeping critique in the comments section of an article.  Whether you are aware of it or not, I appreciate you taking the time to respond in terms which promote some awareness of outside views. 

     

    After reading and considering what you have wrote.  I would like to point out the difference between opinion and placement of fact in a way that encourages the reader to give thought towards a single piece and the whole.  

     

    Everything matters!  

    My response just gave examples of why I don't really have any comments about the items you mentioned. Everyone is free to share their opinions. However, without any context, your opinions are hard to make sense of. Suggesting an Intel processor is notable, doesn't tell anyone anything. 

     

    I have no reason to say, I find SOtM's use of Intel processors normal, as I do the mATX motherboard. I don't write because more words are better. 

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    So which Karnac can we expect will be avoiding this range of specifications you state are unnotable?   

     

    In their upcoming review of note.  

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    3 hours ago, rando said:

    Chris, I would greatly enjoy hearing your own thoughts on this product.  Surely a site owner and proponent of digital audio for over a decade has gained insights and experiences of great value which might be selectively brought forwards in greater numbers.  

     

    But why now? Why not after Chris has had a chance to actually use one, learn more about it, discuss in detail the device with the creators, etc...

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    1 minute ago, ted_b said:

    Huh??  Is it 5 o'clock where you are?  😎  He posted about a new unreleased product and said stay tuned.  No one has used this product yet!!! 

     

    I felt my responses went far enough to display consumer reaction to articles that amount to reciting marketing blather.  At no point did they contest lack of a review where one was not possible.  I stand by what you isolated in quotation fully.  So much so I'd put it as saying anyone reading my initial post was confronted with a much improved set of criteria through which to view this new product.  Had Chris not resorted to blandishments and obfuscation I would've more than likely left it be at thanking him for taking the time to acknowledge reading what I had written.   

     

    I'll suitably thank you for taking the time to find a positive connotation intended to disperse any negative air surrounding questions of validity.  :)

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    25 minutes ago, rando said:

    felt my responses went far enough to display consumer reaction to articles that amount to reciting marketing blather.


    As you can see, many people here appreciate being notified that this product was released. 
     

    To be honest, I believe the word blather describes your words very well. 
     

    CB4CFE1E-71A6-477B-943B-44D080D97F5B.jpeg

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    Chris, I do have some ideas for questions if you ever get a chance to ask them of the SoTM team.

     

    PCI 3?

    a generation old intel chips?

    USB 2.0?

    1 CPU fan header and 1 system fan header?
    Is this specifically designed for a particular system they will be selling in the future?

    and to follow on from JCB, what does make this different from a normal motherboard other than fewer and older features?

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    How long will it be till a vendor comes out with an audiophile server based on this board?

    Lots of people don't want to build a pc from scratch.

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    I'm really intrigued, and look forward to hearing all kinds of details that will let me assess whether it's worth the dollars and effort to replace my current computer-based home media server.

     

    What I've got now is reasonably new, and began as a NUC. But there are now fanless cases for NUC components - you basically take everything out of the NUC, and the pieces-parts go into the new all aluminum case that's almost completely head sink kind of fins. The cases come with heat sink connection pieces for some parts, like the M.2 drives.

     

    We really appreciate the difference. No more fan noise, and if we were streaming to two or three zones, the fan in the NUC could get pretty annoying. And then... a lot of NUC (including the one we used) have a high rate of fan failure. So the upgrade to fanless was partly driven my need. I've monitored temperatures in the new case, and they're lower than in the NUC with the noisy fan, even when streaming to three zones.

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    On 12/17/2021 at 5:17 PM, The Computer Audiophile said:

    I have no idea what that means. 

    I have no idea what most of Rando's posts mean. Is it an issue with English as a second language or an attempt to sound intelligent by constructing convoluted sentences? In any case, Me scratching my head since it sounds like yoda speak to me, most of what he posts leaves.     

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    On 12/17/2021 at 9:36 PM, One and a half said:

    There's no support for Xeon? It's pretty much dead in the water for me then. Also wonder if a 24/7 operation has similar specs to a server class board.

     

    One good thing the only windows is the LTSC version support, of all Windows for audio, I found that OS to be the least to get in the way SQ wise. 

     

    I assume it is something possible with a FW upgrade like with Supermicro : the LG 1151v2 are compatible with Xeon 2100 and 2200 series. For OS support should not be a big issue to use also some Windows server versions…i doubt that SOtM created specific components with specific drivers

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    Very unclear what these audio parts actually are. 
     

    External (optional) clock input isn’t explained at all. And no connection available. This may be the most interesting feature. 
     

    If they where to build an audiophile motherboard I would like to see several options for external power input. And at least one SFP cage. 
     

    No W11 support. Not sure if it’s matters. 

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    On 12/18/2021 at 8:31 AM, firedog said:

    How long will it be till a vendor comes out with an audiophile server based on this board?

    Lots of people don't want to build a pc from scratch.

    Like a Sonictransporter ? 
     

    Quote

    I can't wait to see this one in the wild and to start getting feedback from the Audiophile Style community as more people integrate this motherboard into their systems.

     

    Any suggestions what this motherboard can replace ? And improve ?

    I expect HQplayer isn’t where one like to use such a motherboard. 

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