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Using Ethernet ports on router vs using a switch to optimize SQ


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I’ve gotten to the point where I am satisfied with my hardware so focusing on network connections, isolation, and vibration control. Currently, I have the following setup:

 

linksys modem ➡️ Bluejeans Ethernet cable➡️ Netgear Orbi Router➡️Bluejeans Ethernet cable (from open Ethernet port on router)➡️ Cisco switch (just ordered modified Buffalo switch from Afterdark)➡️ Viablue Ethernet cable ➡️ EtherRegen A side➡️ EtherRegen B side➡️Audiosensibility Ethernet cable➡️ Antipodes K50 server/player.

 

I am trying to figure out if I would be better off putting the switch directly after the modem and running one Ethernet cable from switch to EtherRegen and a second Ethernet cable from switch to router( for wifi). When I get my new Buffalo switch I’ll try it both ways but was wondering if anyone had experience trying this and what the difference (if any) there was. My thought was that the new Buffalo switch is superior in terms of electrical noise than the Ethernet ports on the router so routing flow from modem to switch to EtherRegen would be better than modem to router to switch since you taking the router out of the direct connection to EtherRegen.

 

By the way, adding an LPS (Uptone LPS 1.2) to current Cisco switch and using Uptone JS-2 to power EtherRegen really made noticeable improvement in SQ. Also Uptone LPS 1.2 added to modem was modest improvement 

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Well I just tried to put the switch between router and modem and it doesn’t work. Researching this I found out that apparently I cannot do this with a dumb switch. It looks like I may be able to do this with the new Buffalo switch I am waiting for since I believe it is a smart switch. I have no clue how to program switch to allow this but not sure I want to take the time to figure out unless I get some indication that by doing so will be an improvement.

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20 hours ago, lxgreen said:

putting the switch directly after the modem and running one Ethernet cable from switch to EtherRegen and a second Ethernet cable from switch to router( for wifi)

I'm not sure I understand this, but the switch needs to be after the router then branches out. You probably end up in the same place this way, it's just a different way of describing it.

 

Modem > Router > Switch (Assume you have bridged the Modem and Router)

 

You can run from the router to your home network and Audio Network separately then stack switches from there.

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Usually the ISP provides an all-in-one modem/router/switch. When you add a separate router you usually shut off the wireless and Bridge the modem to the Router. The router provides, among other things, DHCP to assign IP addresses to all your networked devices. The Bridge turns off the Modem's router function and hands it off to the Router. Usually you can set up the Bridge by logging onto the Router but sometimes the ISP needs to flip a switch at their end. You should confirm this is functioning as intended and then everything downstream should be basic plug n play.

 

I think the way you had it setup makes perfect sense. Some have put their audio network on a different subnet to provide further isolation and optical fiber etc.

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Yes, the Uptone LPS is set to 12v and no hiccups.  I did have a problem trying to power my Orbi router at 12 v. The router would shut down and restart constantly. I have it powered now with 12v from an Uptone JS-2 and no issues

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1 hour ago, lxgreen said:

Yes, the Uptone LPS is set to 12v and no hiccups.  I did have a problem trying to power my Orbi router at 12 v. The router would shut down and restart constantly. I have it powered now with 12v from an Uptone JS-2 and no issues

The case is not the 12V, but how much Amps it uses. The LPS 1.2 can only deliver 1,2 A and maybe your modem needs more

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Yeah, I think I figured that out when even though it was a 12 volt router, there were not enough amps to make it work properly. The 1.2 also actually works well with my Cisco switch and I think that made the biggest improvement in sq over LPS on the modem and router. I needed to order a high current 12v LPS to use when I get my new modded Buffalo switch. Thanks for your input. Much appreciated 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 6/6/2021 at 5:26 PM, lxgreen said:

Well I just tried to put the switch between router and modem and it doesn’t work. Researching this I found out that apparently I cannot do this with a dumb switch. It looks like I may be able to do this with the new Buffalo switch I am waiting for since I believe it is a smart switch. I have no clue how to program switch to allow this but not sure I want to take the time to figure out unless I get some indication that by doing so will be an improvement.

The router always needs to come directly after the modem. The router forms a bridge between networks, in this case between the Wide Area Network, i.e. the internet, and your Local Area Network. A switch, regardless of whether is a smart switch or not, only operates in one network, cannot bridge between networks. 

“The best sounding audio product is the one that exhibits the least audible flaws.”

 Dr. Floyd Toole

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On 6/8/2021 at 9:33 PM, lxgreen said:

Yeah, I think I figured that out when even though it was a 12 volt router, there were not enough amps to make it work properly. The 1.2 also actually works well with my Cisco switch and I think that made the biggest improvement in sq over LPS on the modem and router. I needed to order a high current 12v LPS to use when I get my new modded Buffalo switch.

Yes, voltage needs to be exact and current capability needs to be at least able to meet the demand. In fact some say it's best to go over by 15% when substituting an LPS for SMPS.

 

The cable modem supplied by my internet provider had a very noisy SMPS. It was messing up the sound, even in my NAS system, which does not use the modem. I assume the SMPS was dumping noise into the electrical supply. All my networking gear is plugged into the same Furman power conditioner. Changing the modem SMPS for an iPower 12V fixed the problem. 

 

I added a Zerozone 12V 3.3A LPS for my TP-Link Archer router and it provided a sonic improvement. I tried another LPS on my TP-Link switch and it was awful. I'd heard, both here and on What's Best Forum, that some purely digital gear works best with an SMPS, so I bought an iPower X for the switch, and that was a nice upgrade.  

“The best sounding audio product is the one that exhibits the least audible flaws.”

 Dr. Floyd Toole

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I would leave the router immediately after the modem or your ISP will refuse to service. I have my own firewall router in front of my internal network because the ISP supplied router was getting confused/overloaded (I also have IPTV which that router routes). My Mellanox fiber switch plugs into the wall and I wouldn't dream of changing the PSU. I ***good*** switch handles whatever PSU the manuf ships with it, and believe me, my switch has lower noise than anything. I'm not suggesting that folks get or need 100Gbe switches but the fact is that they work on SMPS and 100Gbe NICs work on whatever ATX PSU supplies them. The noise on their lines is insanely low and that's because they have onboard power supplies, including onboard linear chips.  I mean your fridge and AC dump noise on the AC, so get a good iso transformer for your audio area.

Custom room treatments for headphone users.

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Thanks. I have on order a modified Buffalo switch that takes an LPS so I will see what that does for sonics. The cheap Cisco  switch I currently have does improve with an LPS however. Always tinkering and will probably end up in the same place after spending too much money.

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