Audio and Video Talk > Cable talk

Ethernet cable Newbie


Hi Everyone

I had an interesting issue with streaming audio i'd like to share as it may help someone else that has also had this issue.

I bought the primare I32 integrated amp with the MM30 dac onboard a few years back.
I set it up with an ethernet cable that I got from a router box.
Initiallly it work well as I use the primare app which links with Tidal to stream some of their hi-res content and I can easily hear the difference as opposed to using bluetooth with is also supported by the MM30.
Then one day it just started playing for 5 sec then stops for 10 sec, plays 5 stops 10 etc.
I tried updating, contacted the supplier which says it wasn't supported anymore and that I needed to buy the new PRISM series streaming which uses their new platform/tech/app (for a measley R10K of course)
I tried streaming through the USB B from laptop and of course from my phone but needed other apps and of course a fixed wired which means I can't sit in the listening position and browse and skip songs...
I was so fed up I haven't used it in a year or more (only for movies etc but not stereo) I would use my earphones for music listening but sorely missed the hifi option.
Then one day I tried it again, stil same problem so I started trawling forums and probably searched of and on for months until one forum suggested making sure that you use CAT6 or higher ethernet cables for hi-res streaming.
I had a pair of 2m cat6 cables made the next day at the local computer shop, one from the fibre box to the router and another from the router to the MM30 and presto. No more problems, just pure crystal clear non stop music. I was so chuffed and angry at the same time that I had to struggle and almost spent R10k and the problem would probably would still be there as the out of the box ethernet cables are CAT5 and seemingly does not support the high bandwidth needed for close to or beyond 1000Mbits/s  streaming...
So glad that I could fix the issue for R60!
Now for the discusssion if an audiophile grade ethernet cable is worthwile or not he he he.

Whatever the cause was, it's not the CAT6 cable that fixed it. It's the old cable (or more likely the plugs or crimping) that was crap, or similar issues on either the devices. Audiophile cables will polish your 1's and 0's, they won't make disappearing packets reappear, except in the most stringent cases of interference or cable lengths.
If the hardware devices are fine, an old 50m roll of CAT3 should work just fine for streaming.

An audiophile ethernet cable will do 3 things

It will make you a tad poorer for a while
It won't do anything to the sound
After a while, swapping between Cat5 and Cat8, you will realise, as Pierre above said, its the plugs and the way they are put on that counts

An RJ45 plug is about R1,20.   You can get real fancy ones from places like Linqage for 50 times the price.   They do look nice I must say

I must have fitted thousands of RJ45 plugs.  I still get them wrong (as shown by a network cable tester) now and then

Thanks Gents for the sensible and honest replies. After posting this I did find some previous topics where you and other members discuss this and other related topics in more detail. To my mind as you stated a digital cable carries 1's and 0's or they don't so even though I own some decent analogue cables I won't be spending more money on ethernet cables, rather spend it on something nice to sip while enjoying the music... ;D


[0] Message Index

Go to full version