Jump to content
IGNORED

Balancing IT interests and music interests in managed switches


Recommended Posts

Due to our ongoing shelter-at-home situation, my IT department has decided that I need business level Internet/Networking in my home environment.  As a result, they have replaced the simple unmanaged TPLink/Netgear switches I previously used with managed SG350 series Cisco switches.  This, of course, runs contrary to what many here, including Jussi with regard to HQPlayer, and others at Roon, including CTO Danny Dulai, have suggested.  In that regard, they were right as my UltraRendu/DAC combination (which was able to to DSD512 upsampling with very limited dropouts) no longer can, even after making sure the managed switches are configured for 802.3 flow control, 802.1 QOS, multicast routing, etc. 

 

Asking my IT guys about how to configure these switches to permit me to continue to use DSD512 with HQPlayer gets nothing but confused looks as this is something they have never dealt with.  And while I understand it is easier for Jussi/Danny to advocate cheap dumb switches, that effectively means having to run two completely different networks for data and music (which I cannot do without tearing up walls to run a second set of cables).

 

Are any of our Audiophile Style readers sufficiently knowledgeable in both HQPlayer and managed switch architecture (ideally Cisco) to have recommendations about the necessary settings that would allow a managed switch to permit proper throughput between my computer and my UltraRendu to continue to use DSD512 upsampling? I know that Chris has gone through some of this with his Ubiquiti network, but it seems that every switch manufacturer necessitates slightly different configurations--hence the understandable preference for dumb, cheap and unmanaged...

 

Many thanks in advance to anyone with the patience to reply/assist!

 

 

Synology NAS>i7-6700/32GB/NVIDIA QUADRO P4000 Win10>Qobuz+Tidal>Roon>HQPlayer>DSD512> Fiber Switch>Ultrarendu (NAA)>SMSL M500 DAC> Bryston SP3 pre>Levinson No. 432 amps>Magnepan (MG20.1x2, CCR and MMC2x6)

Link to post
Share on other sites

I bought a Cisco Catalyst 2960 switch for just that purpose and inserted it just ahead of the UltraRendu, but that doesn't help.  Overall my system configuration (without the 2960 switch added) looks like: 

 

image.png.af1bdb20c2244c01c390a29a38a51811.png

Synology NAS>i7-6700/32GB/NVIDIA QUADRO P4000 Win10>Qobuz+Tidal>Roon>HQPlayer>DSD512> Fiber Switch>Ultrarendu (NAA)>SMSL M500 DAC> Bryston SP3 pre>Levinson No. 432 amps>Magnepan (MG20.1x2, CCR and MMC2x6)

Link to post
Share on other sites

I understand that your computer serves both, your company and your music interest?

If you would use a dedicated musicserver/audio PC and a local switch as @AudioDoctor
has suggested and use your pc only for control function, you may solve your problems. The minimal version could be using a 2nd dedicated LAN card on your PC for the 2nd  (old) network with your old switch (if still available), I would assume.

Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, DuckToller said:

I understand that your computer serves both, your company and your music interest?

If you would use a dedicated musicserver/audio PC and a local switch as @AudioDoctor
has suggested and use your pc only for control function, you may solve your problems. The minimal version could be using a 2nd dedicated LAN card on your PC for the 2nd  (old) network with your old switch (if still available), I would assume.

 

Yes, that's what I meant, everything is in my audio room, including the server, and they are all connected to the switch in there, thanks for helping make that clearer @DuckToller .

No electron left behind...

Link to post
Share on other sites

Could you connect your NAS simultaneously to your new 2960 switch and the SG350, using one Ethernet port of the 415+ per switch?

With a 2nd ethPort on your computer you could as well go directly to the 2960 to avoid crossing the managed switches, however internet streamed music would still cross all switches before getting upsampled ...

Did you find out which upsampling rate is possible with your actual configuration?

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, DuckToller said:

I understand that your computer serves both, your company and your music interest?

If you would use a dedicated musicserver/audio PC and a local switch as @AudioDoctor
has suggested and use your pc only for control function, you may solve your problems. The minimal version could be using a 2nd dedicated LAN card on your PC for the 2nd  (old) network with your old switch (if still available), I would assume.

Yes, I built a high-end PC two years ago to do work, photoshop and music on, which necessitated both a fast processor (then) and a fast graphics card for both music and photography.  Since last February that has become where I spend most of my time during Covid lockdown.  

 

I had thought about the second LAN card idea as I do have dark fiber in my wall conduit so i could run on LAN on Ethernet and a second one on fiber (but I'd then have to create two NAS drives (one with my music files and one with my photography and business backups).  

 

Thanks fior the ideas. 

Synology NAS>i7-6700/32GB/NVIDIA QUADRO P4000 Win10>Qobuz+Tidal>Roon>HQPlayer>DSD512> Fiber Switch>Ultrarendu (NAA)>SMSL M500 DAC> Bryston SP3 pre>Levinson No. 432 amps>Magnepan (MG20.1x2, CCR and MMC2x6)

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, DuckToller said:

Did you find out which upsampling rate is possible with your actual configuration?

 I can do DSD256 using Poly Sinc Ext2 (same filter I was using with DSD512) with minimal dropouts, but still more than I was getting at 512 using the unmanaged Netgear switches.  Unfortunately, I can hear the difference between 512 and 256 with the Delta Sigma DAC chips... ;-( 

Synology NAS>i7-6700/32GB/NVIDIA QUADRO P4000 Win10>Qobuz+Tidal>Roon>HQPlayer>DSD512> Fiber Switch>Ultrarendu (NAA)>SMSL M500 DAC> Bryston SP3 pre>Levinson No. 432 amps>Magnepan (MG20.1x2, CCR and MMC2x6)

Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, sdolezalek said:

but I'd then have to create two NAS drives (one with my music files and one with my photography and business backups

Why? Imo a NAS is a file sanctuary with intelligent software to meet your demands in security, file mangement and distribution/access.

1 hour ago, sdolezalek said:

I can do DSD256 using Poly Sinc Ext2 (same filter I was using with DSD512) with minimal dropouts,

over LAN, streaming or local?

 

1 hour ago, sdolezalek said:

Unfortunately, I can hear the difference between 512 and 256 with the Delta Sigma DAC chips... ;-( 

I feel with you.. . .

Just for testing: if you let Roon do it's standard OS to DSD512 (no HQP), does it work without dropouts using NAS?

 

Bloody questionnaire is about locating the bottleneck...

 

In my book connecting the NAS, the UltraRendu and your PC with a 2nd ethConnection (first to the SG350) to the 2960 (with the 2960 connected to the SG350) may provide the best network performance for music under the given circumstances.

We may ask  @plissken
if a 2nd subnet or 2nd LAN would be still of advantage?

Regards, Tom

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Without seeing configurations they have implemented they most likely went in and de-rated traffic that doesn't have the DSCP tags they want to see. That means all traffic.

 

If they are paying for a business circuit then I would have a second consumer circuit installed for your use. It effectively means you are running double the equipment unfortunately.

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, plissken said:

Without seeing configurations they have implemented they most likely went in and de-rated traffic that doesn't have the DSCP tags they want to see. That means all traffic.

 

If they are paying for a business circuit then I would have a second consumer circuit installed for your use. It effectively means you are running double the equipment unfortunately.

 

 

@plissken Thanks for jumping in.  My guess is that you are correct re settings treating all traffic equally.  But the focus has been on security, not throughput, so I have flexibility in resetting DSCP tags to prioritize my PC-to-UltraRendu pathway when I'm playing music.  Installing a second consumer circuit and attaching it to my PC just reintroduces the security risk, so would not be a preferred solution.  But perhaps there is a way to implement a VLAN solution on the existing PC/circuit that creates a priority pathway for music when Roon/HQPlayer/Tidal/Quboz is in use.  Of course teaching me how to set up a VLAN with appropriate DSCP tags may well be above my rudimentary managed switch skill set. :-) 

Synology NAS>i7-6700/32GB/NVIDIA QUADRO P4000 Win10>Qobuz+Tidal>Roon>HQPlayer>DSD512> Fiber Switch>Ultrarendu (NAA)>SMSL M500 DAC> Bryston SP3 pre>Levinson No. 432 amps>Magnepan (MG20.1x2, CCR and MMC2x6)

Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, sdolezalek said:

@plissken Thanks for jumping in.  My guess is that you are correct re settings treating all traffic equally.  But the focus has been on security, not throughput, so I have flexibility in resetting DSCP tags to prioritize my PC-to-UltraRendu pathway when I'm playing music.  Installing a second consumer circuit and attaching it to my PC just reintroduces the security risk, so would not be a preferred solution.  But perhaps there is a way to implement a VLAN solution on the existing PC/circuit that creates a priority pathway for music when Roon/HQPlayer/Tidal/Quboz is in use.  Of course teaching me how to set up a VLAN with appropriate DSCP tags may well be above my rudimentary managed switch skill set. :-) 

 

If this is for security then they shouldn't allow non-company assets on their network.  If you install another circuit then you would have an air gapped network that wouldn't share any connections.

 

You could create a VLAN but the issue is that DSCP is a layer 3 protocol and soon as your inter-vlan traffic hits it will be re-rated accordingly. This is how hair pin traffic works. Are they not doing split tunnel? That would be the solution.

 

Devil is in the details and there could be a good amount of Q/A about how they have you configured and what the goals are to unpack.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/10/2021 at 11:32 PM, sdolezalek said:

As a result, they have replaced the simple unmanaged TPLink/Netgear switches I previously used with managed SG350 series Cisco switches.  This, of course, runs contrary to what many here, including Jussi with regard to HQPlayer, and others at Roon, including CTO Danny Dulai, have suggested.  In that regard, they were right as my UltraRendu/DAC combination (which was able to to DSD512 upsampling with very limited dropouts) no longer can, even after making sure the managed switches are configured for 802.3 flow control, 802.1 QOS, multicast routing, etc. 

 

Hmmh, not really, I'm using two SG350-10 myself (-10 and -10P), along with bunch of similar HPE switches. You just need to pay attention to configuration. Without proper configuration, with default settings, you will end up in trouble. So these kind of switches should be only used when you are ready to spend time and effort configuring them correctly.

 

On 1/10/2021 at 11:32 PM, sdolezalek said:

Are any of our Audiophile Style readers sufficiently knowledgeable in both HQPlayer and managed switch architecture (ideally Cisco) to have recommendations about the necessary settings that would allow a managed switch to permit proper throughput between my computer and my UltraRendu to continue to use DSD512 upsampling?

 

From port settings, make sure Flow Control is set to "Auto Negotiation" on all ports:

Screenshot_2021-01-12_00-05-11.png.6c1ddd8c2333f95b2fb3369a315dc785.png

 

From Green Ethernet, enable features so that the switch doesn't bang at full power on short cables and doesn't keep unused/inactive ports powered up:

 

Screenshot_2021-01-12_00-07-38.png.eaeee0c108f280422429c8012d4a906e.png

 

Under QoS, use Basic mode:

 

Screenshot_2021-01-12_00-11-01.png.5a9c928d97b7d933203ae5fd8cd27e1e.png

 

And in Basic Mode, use CoS/802.1p-DSCP:

 

Screenshot_2021-01-12_00-11-50.png.4dec72758af8285da8a2d9aea2417075.png

And check that QoS is enabled for all ports.

 

 

In QoS / Queue Statistics, you can see that it is working:

Screenshot_2021-01-12_00-27-50.png.df3b761892a67b8255b3c4e5c2c25360.png

 

 

Under Statistics and Etherlike, you can check that flow control is active on Rendu and HQPlayer interfaces. After doing playback, you should have some pause frame stats (pause frames are the flow control packets sent by 802.3x flow control):

Screenshot_2021-01-12_00-14-28.png.a13c3ec7a5be76eced22a6f40bf21fae.png

 

Screenshot_2021-01-12_00-17-42.thumb.png.f2ca5896758db8d1b814209dea21d5b3.png

 

 

In Advanced mode, Security / Storm Control I have made following adjustments:

Screenshot_2021-01-12_00-26-03.thumb.png.5e78d61608d80165d0afa1408378e943.png

 

 

Signalyst - Developer of HQPlayer

Pulse & Fidelity - Software Defined Amplifiers

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Miska said:

Hmmh, not really, I'm using two SG350-10 myself (-10 and -10P), along with bunch of similar HPE switches. You just need to pay attention to configuration. Without proper configuration, with default settings, you will end up in trouble. So these kind of switches should be only used when you are ready to spend time and effort configuring them correctly.

Jussi:  First and as usual, thank you very much for the extremely patient and helpful reply.  Second, I am using the same SG350-10 switches, so your setting pictures were very helpful. Third, I had already read all of your posts here that I could find re switch settings and so my port/flow control settings, green ethernet settings and QoS settings were already as you recommended.  The only settings I needed to change to match yours were those in Security/Storm Control and there I set both switches to match your settings.  

 

I then dialed back my upsampling to DSD256 using PolySinc Ext-2, but I am still getting dropouts every 20 seconds or so (DSD512 is unusable).  Interestingly, in looking at my Statistics and Etherlike, I'm seeing 0 Pause Frames Transmitted and 0 Pause Frames Received, 0 Frame Check Sequence Errors, and under Etherlike while there is a large number of Pause Frames Received there are 0 Pause Frames Transmitted.  

 

Is it possible that I'm missing a setting at the UltraRendu/HQ Player end that isn't sending the right packet control data back to the switch? 

 

Thanks again!

Synology NAS>i7-6700/32GB/NVIDIA QUADRO P4000 Win10>Qobuz+Tidal>Roon>HQPlayer>DSD512> Fiber Switch>Ultrarendu (NAA)>SMSL M500 DAC> Bryston SP3 pre>Levinson No. 432 amps>Magnepan (MG20.1x2, CCR and MMC2x6)

Link to post
Share on other sites

It looks as though the culprit isn't the Cisco Switches, but is the poor QoS rules in the Nest WiFi router (which require it to function as the DHCP router in order to establish a mesh network).  Somehow, even though all of my connections between PC/UltraRendu/NAS are hard-wired Ethernet, the QoS settings in the WiFi router are causing sufficient network congestion to mess up the transmission required for DSD256/512. 

 

Any ideas for a wireless mesh network with good security (IT chose the Nest because of WEP3 and good coverage for 5G) that isn't likely to mess with my ethernet traffic? 

Synology NAS>i7-6700/32GB/NVIDIA QUADRO P4000 Win10>Qobuz+Tidal>Roon>HQPlayer>DSD512> Fiber Switch>Ultrarendu (NAA)>SMSL M500 DAC> Bryston SP3 pre>Levinson No. 432 amps>Magnepan (MG20.1x2, CCR and MMC2x6)

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/12/2021 at 1:26 AM, sdolezalek said:

It looks as though the culprit isn't the Cisco Switches, but is the poor QoS rules in the Nest WiFi router (which require it to function as the DHCP router in order to establish a mesh network).  Somehow, even though all of my connections between PC/UltraRendu/NAS are hard-wired Ethernet, the QoS settings in the WiFi router are causing sufficient network congestion to mess up the transmission required for DSD256/512. 

 

Any ideas for a wireless mesh network with good security (IT chose the Nest because of WEP3 and good coverage for 5G) that isn't likely to mess with my ethernet traffic? 

 

WiFi can be weird. I tend to turn off most optional QoS stuff because a good switch should give you 1Gbe from NAS to server and 1Gbe from server to NAA. That's to say that I have managed switches which I leave in unmanaged mode for the most part.

 

Then there's broadcasts ... we have discussed using IPV6 as a way to reduce network broadcasts.

Custom room treatments for headphone users.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


×
×
  • Create New...