Wireworld Starlight Cat8 Ethernet Cable

Device Type: Ethernet Cable
Availability: Wireworld Cable Technology Dealers
Versions: STE (Standard Termination), SCE (Crossover Termination). STE versions were used in this review. SCE Crossover cables are used to connect 2 computers together or 2 or more switches together
Price: $210.00 / 1 meter , $270 / 2 meter length
Website: www.wireworldcable.com

Wireworld has recently released a new Ethernet Cable called the Starlight Cat8 Ethernet Cable. David Salz, chief designer at Wireworld, contacted me back in October and asked if I would be interested in evaluating his new Ethernet cable. I could tell that this cable just might be something very special given the excitement I detected in his writing.

The Starlight Cat8 Ethernet Cable supports Category 8 transmission speeds in a flat design that also provides great flexibility and ease of use. The Starlight Cat8 has a patent pending Tite-Shield™ design that uses triple-shielded 23 gauge conductors in a cable that is just a tenth of an inch thick. This new cable design has also simplified assembly with Wireworld’s shielded RJ-45 plugs.

The Design
David Salz provided us this information concerning the design of his new Cat8 Ethernet Cable:

The Category 7 cabling standard was created to satisfy the demands of 10 Gigabit Ethernet. Even though media networks tend to run below that speed, cables that support higher speeds have been found to improve the quality of audio and video streaming. Those improvements are possible because streamed signals suffer from data errors that cannot be repaired by the error correction systems that preserve normal file transfers. The proposed standard for future networks is Category 8, which will support speeds of 40 Gigabits per second.

Category 8 performance is difficult to achieve with conventional shielded twisted pair designs. The primary challenge is minimizing crosstalk (mixing) between the four signal channels. To control crosstalk, conventional cables twist the four pairs of conductors and use one foil shield on each pair. An overall two-layer shield reduces outside interference. Twisting the conductors reduces crosstalk, but it also tends to make the conductor lengths uneven, which causes timing errors called skew.

Furthermore, conventional twisted pair high speed Ethernet cables are also quite stiff. The conductors in Wireworld’s Tite-Shield design are not twisted at all. Instead, they are arranged as four parallel channels with a dense three-layer shield on each conductor pair. These shields isolate the four channels so effectively that twisting is not required and conductor length differences are eliminated. This patent pending flat design minimizes both crosstalk and skew, providing leading edge performance, simplified assembly and excellent installation flexibility. The cable also utilizes Wireworld’s proprietary Composilex 2 insulation to minimize triboelectric noise, which is especially helpful when used in vibration prone home theater environments.

Conventional round high-speed Ethernet cables are stiff and require special tools to assemble. They also can’t bend around sharp turns without losing performance and any excess length creates large coils. In contrast, Starlight CAT8 Ethernet is a flat flexible cable that fits under carpets, bends around corners, coils effortlessly and can be assembled with a simple wire cutter or knife. Starlight Ethernet also has a fresh new look in a bold red color that complements high tech décor. As network speeds have increased, the cables that can keep up have become stiffer and more difficult to install. Wireworld developed the Starlight Category 8 Ethernet cable to overcome those issues with a flat flexible design that goes where you want and is also easy to assemble. With next generation performance and versatility, Starlight Ethernet provides consumers and IT professionals with new installation options and lasting value.

Specifications:

  • Design: Tite-Shield Technology: 100 Ohms
  • Signal Conductors: 23AWG | 0.26 sq. mm
  • Conductor material: Silver-clad OFC
  • Insulation: Composilex 2
  • Plug Contacts: 24K Gold-plated
  • Two Versions: STE (Standard Termination) and SCE (Crossover Termination}
Associated Computer Components
I employed a new Asus G701VI laptop running Windows 10 Pro 64 / AudiophileOptimizer to run Roon Server and act as my Roon Core to stream to a Sonore microRendu. The Asus G701VI possesses an overclockable Intel Core i7 6820HK processor with 32 GB DDR4 2400Mhz SDRAM and a very fast PCIe Gen3 X4 NVMe SSD. This laptop has 3 USB 3.0 ports as well as a Thunderbolt port (USB type- C). An NVIDIA GeoForce GTX1080 with 8 GB VRAM processes video. This powerful video processor allows significant CUDA offload processing for the HQPlayer. The Asus laptop was plugged into a Shunyata Research Hydra DPC-6 v2 distribution center to firewall the noise generated by this computer from contaminating my AC line.

The Asus Core was remotely controlled by an iPad Air 2 that replicated all of the functions of the standard Roon program. I also used the Roon Server to stream to the on-board Signalyst HQPlayer with all files converted to DSD256, which in turn, were streamed to the microRendu powered by the Sonore Signature Series Power Supply.

The Asus was placed on a Synergistic Research Tranquility Base UEF grounded with the Synergistic Research High Definition Ground Cable / Grounding Block as was the computer. A G-Technology 16 TB G|RAID Thunderbolt 2 / USB 3 drive was connected to the Asus with an AudioQuest Coffee Thunderbolt cable. The G|RAID Thunderbolt drive was powered by an HDPlex 100w linear power supply plugged into a Shunyata Denali power conditioner. The G|RAID Thunderbolt drive and its HDPlex power supply were placed on a Synergistic Research Tranquility Base. The Sonore microRendu and its Signature Series Power Supply were also placed on a Synergistic Research Tranquility Base. The Signature Power Supply was connected to a Shunyata Triton v2 / Typhon by a Shunyata Alpha Analog AC cord.

The MSB Technology Analog DAC with Analog Power Base was engaged for DAC duties with it plugged into a Shunyata Triton v2 / Typhon with a Shunyata Sigma Digital AC cord. The DAC and its power supply were placed on a Synergistic Research Tranquility Base UEF.

The Starlight CAT8 Ethernet cables were placed between the computer and a switch and between the switch and Sonore microRendu. I also used AudioQuest Diamond and Vodka Ethernet cables. Both the Wireworld and AudioQuest Ethernet cables are directional for optimum performance.

The Sound of the Starlight CAT8 Ethernet Cable
The Starlight CAT8 is very different sounding Ethernet cable when compared to my AudioQuest Diamond or Vodka Ethernet cables. The Starlight CAT8 is more extended sounding at the high and low end. This cable has a bit of midrange presence that I liked and didn’t find to be annoying in terms of brightness. The retrieval of high-end detail is outstanding. The midbass of the Starlight CAT8 is very controlled as is the low end. Dynamic contrasts, both micro and macro, are beautifully rendered and very easy to hear.

The Audioquest Diamond and Vodka have smoothness at the high end that some, no doubt, will prefer. But I find the Starlight CAT8 to be the more revealing cable. The soundstage rendered by the Starlight CAT8 is the largest I have heard extending far beyond the lateral borders of my speakers. There is also very good depth reproduction if captured on the recording.

The Starlight CAT8 reminded me sonically of what I heard when I reviewed the Platinum Starlight 7 USB 2.0 Cable. If you like this USB cable, I suspect that you will love the Starlight CAT8.

Incidentally, for those of you that feel that there are no differences between Ethernet cables, I did some comparisons with a CAT6 Belden Ethernet cable and the Starlight CAT8. The Starlight CAT8 trounced the Belden in terms of sound quality.

The Music
While listening to Fourplay Energy (24/96), I was impressed with the resolution of transient detail and lifelike sense of instrumental body and weight of the music. Even though this was a studio recording, I perceived a tube-like bloom and three dimensionality to the soundstage. There was a micro-dynamic liveliness that I had not previously heard with my other Ethernet cables.

Norah Jones’ new release Day Breaks (24/96) was equally impressive to listen to through the Starlight CAT8. The Starlight CAT8 reproduced a purity and liquidity to Norah’s voice that resulted in a relaxed presentation that was easy to listen to for extended periods of time. The Starlight CAT8 was a champ at resolving very fine details without spotlighting.

Conclusions
In many ways I find the Starlight CAT8 Ethernet Cable to be an extraordinary performer with the ability to reproduce fine transient detail and dynamics that are lost with other Ethernet cables. The soundstaging capabilities of this cable are impressive and have the ability to be richly layered when called upon. David Salz has come up with an Ethernet cable for the high end computer audiophile that is not only an assault on the state of the art, but affordable as well.


Associated Equipment

COMMENTS
bubblewrap's picture

Can't say I'm impressed with the transition from chunky cable to delicate plastic RJ45 via the universal audiophile cable panacea of 'some heatshrink'. A logo doesn't help.

One of the justifications for expensive cables is that they are supposed to be better engineered mechanically than the same thing from ebay for £1. But the ones from ebay are, at least, moulded on. This cable is only a few flexes or pulls away from failure.

Steven Plaskin's picture
I found this cable to be very well made and the connectors to be sturdy. Unless you are using the cable to tow your car out of a ditch, I sincerely doubt you will have a connector to wire failure.
solarophile's picture

"Those improvements are possible because streamed signals suffer from data errors that cannot be repaired by the error correction systems that preserve normal file transfers."

Anyone able to verify this in the context of audio transfers? Should be rather straight forward. Aren't the vast majority of audio streaming using the TCP protocol with excellent error correction?

bobflood's picture

Ethernet cables in use there is an urgent need to pay more attention to the Modems, Routers and Switches in the signal path. Using these cables in conjunction with some generic ISP provided Modem/Router combo and some cheap 10/100 switch all powered by noisy SMPs is likely a waste of money. Your setup as described eliminates most of these problems and allows you to hear what these cables can do. For most others probably not so much.

I upgraded my Modem, Router and Switches and power them with linear or low noise power supplies. It wasn't until I did so that I could hear what my new expensive Ethernet cables really could sound like.

This may be a new area for you and Michael to investigate as we move into a world where most music will come to us from the net.

Great review.

Thanks,

Bob

Steven Plaskin's picture
Thanks Bob
stevebythebay's picture

the initial release of these cables have a known problem with Apple products. I know because I was bit trying to plug one into my MacMini. Does not go all the way in and lock. WireWorld became aware of the issue and has begun shipping updated cables that should fit. Tried the older cable with the aforementioned MacMini, as well as iMac, AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule. All had the same issue. Hope to receive an updated cable by end of week to verify fit.

Steven Plaskin's picture

Hi Steve,

I just tried connecting my review samples into a MacBook Pro. The connector will not insert fully. Thanks for alearting us to this issue.

stevebythebay's picture

Compared to other Ethernet cables I have used, these are heavier and stiffer. So, I'd recommend getting lengths that are say a half meter longer than typical. Sonically, just swapping out an Audioquest Vodka (used between a microRendu and switch) showed all the noted improvements you describe. I would expect a reinforcement of these elements once the new cable comes and is put into service.

By the way, recently swapped out a Synergistic Research PowerCell10 with a Shunyata DPC-6 and PS8. That lowered the noise floor, delivered a bit more dynamics, and if I'd spend more time doing very critical listening would undoubtedly identify further attributes. Just better.

Steven Plaskin's picture

Thanks sharing your experiences with the Wireworld cable.

Congrats on your acquisition of the new Shunyata gear.

Steve

bjeff1's picture

Agree with the comments of the Steve's (Plaskin and "by the bay"). A very marked improvement(as in huge) over the stock cable I received with my SonicTransporter and MicroRendu, and over a CAT7 cable I had. The characteristics Steve Plaskin reported were immediately heard and clear in my system. They are winners.

Absolute Zero's picture

When you write " did some comparisons with a CAT6 Belden Ethernet cable and the Starlight CAT8. The Starlight CAT8 trounced the Belden in terms of sound quality. "

What was the test setup?

Since Ethernet as a protocol is not real-time (it sends a whole bunch of data ahead of the time it's needed) technically the connection is sitting powered down by the OS most of the time. It's the default behavior in Windows to power down the NIC when it's not in use even if just for a few seconds.

So your playback is happening out of buffer that the application has set aside.

Steven Plaskin's picture

The two questions I’d have are:

How much data gets sent in each packet frame to the DAC? So, therefore, for how much time is the interface actually not communicating?

The point I’d make is that the received data is transmitted into the actual digital to analog conversion chip continually, since although the communication may not be real time, the conversion by definition has to be.

Beyond that, even if any processing isn’t continuous, the noise it generates still exists. It would be interesting to actually measure that, wouldn’t it?

This was written by an engineer friend of mine.

Absolute Zero's picture

Packet length can vary and is typically 1500bytes. But that is besides the point. If you have a player that has set aside 64MB, or 640MB what will happen, and it's the purpose of the buffer, is to fill it.

Lets say we have a 40Mb of 16/44.1 file and a 64MB buffer and GBe networking. Assuming wire speed of 100MB / sec with protocol overhead included we are able to fetch data and fill the buffer in .4 seconds.

This youtube video may be instructional. Keep in mind the file in question is a 24/192 encoded file and that the network adapter is a 54Mbps and the network appears to max out at 32Mbps:

https://youtu.be/vVoGw55GEcw

Consider this:

With GBe and normalizing it @ 100MByte / second:

1. 24/96 only needs 0.5 % GBe capacity
2. 24/192 only needs 0.9% GBe capacity

So if a CD is ~700MB for 1 hour of music, and Ethernet sends at full data rate as it can the cable is only active for 7 seconds out of that 60 minutes.

I have 100Mbyte / second and that means streaming over the internet that once I get my data rate I'm looking ~70 seconds of actual transit out of an hour.

Absolute Zero's picture

The conversion doesn't happen off the Ethernet cable. You have a multiple copy stack. It's network cable to buffer on the NIC, to PCIe buffer to some CPU buffer, then application buffer, to USB buffer, over USB to the buffer in the DAC. You have multiple copies of the data. What happened on the Ethernet side of things is long gone now.

You are assigning realtime values. Ethernet is not real time.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
...I take it you are saying there's no possible technical explanation for an Ethernet cable affecting the sound quality of an attached hi-fi.

Am I correct? If so, what would you ascribe these perceived differences to?

Note: this is my aside as I like to cut to the chase. Feel free to carry on this informative conversation.

Absolute Zero's picture

I'm certainly open to any but I would hope to see WireWorld provide some sort of research like the papers I'm about to list below.

In Siemons "Screened and Shielded Cabling - Noise Immunity, Grounding, and the Antenna Myth"

"Environmental noise disturbers: Environmental noise is electromagnetic noise that is comprised of magnetic fields (H) generated by inductive coupling (expressed in A/m) and electric fields (E) generated by capacitive coupling (expressed in V/m). Magnetic field coupling occurs at low frequencies (i.e. 50Hz or 60 Hz) where the balance of the cabling system is more than sufficient to ensure immunity, which means that its impact can be ignored for all types of balanced cabling. Electric fields, however, can produce common mode voltages on balanced cables depending on their frequency."

and

"It is important to remember that the overall susceptibility of twisted-pair cables to electric field disturbance is dependent upon both the balance performance of the cabling and the presence of a screen or shield. Well balanced (i.e. category 6 and above) cables should be immune to electromagnetic interference up to 30 MHz. The presence of a shield or screen is necessary to avoid electromagnetic interference at higher frequencies, which is an especially critical consideration for next generation applications. For example, it is reasonable to model that an emerging application using DSP techniques will require a minimum SNR of 20 dB at 100MHz. Since the minimum isolation yielded by balance alone is also 20 dB at 100 MHz, the addition of a screen or shield is necessary to ensure that this application has sufficient noise immunity headroom for operation."

In their testing Siemons subjected CAT6 UTP to 18v/meter. They consider heavy industrial 10v/meter. Home environments don't rate a mention other than an electric drill at 3v/meter.

So in a nutshell, as a standard, CAT6 UTP is phenomenal from a home view point with immunity up to 30Mhz. For higher you need a screened cable. Remember they are talking noise rejection that is 80% higher in their testing than what is typically found in a heavy industrial environment.

Then there are the internal influence(s) and we can read up on a paper by T.I. "AN-1862 Reducing Radiated Emissions in Ethernet 10/100 LAN Applications".

The key here is unbalanced power supplies returning noise on the ground plane and having that flow over the 4 pairs of copper. In that scenario you can screen, use silver, platinum, gold conductors, what have you. But the they are all going to convey that. In terms of silver it's going to technically be worse since silver is technically better at conduction.

Another source is Chassis coupled noise. Again no matter the construction, a $10 or $1000 Ethernet cable, is still going to transmit that. You need to tie into a shielded connector on the NIC and be connected to PCB chassis ground but decoupled from the PCB system ground. This and other best practices are outlined in the same T.I. doc.

Another issue is that with modern power saving in the OS the NIC that a cable attaches to at any point in time is most likely powered down.

So when you are listening to music from either your NAS or Roon, Tidal, etc... This is all buffered and @ any given time the increased resolution, or sound stage, or what superlative have you, is guaranteed to be, more likely than not, playing when the NIC is powered off or transmitting zero data.

If we want to use the T.I. paper as a potential counter argument about some form of ground plane noise... Remember it's induced on the cable internally and the WireWorld cable, like all others that feature CMNR, isn't going to resolve that issue. That is up to the network gear designers.

Steven Plaskin's picture

If all of this verbosity is somehow supposed to convince me that this Wireworld Ethernet cable sounds no different than a standard Belkin Ethernet cable, I will gladly side with my audio experiences.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
The issue appears to be this: you cannot see any reason why an Ethernet cable can affect the sound of an attached hi-fi. Yet, people hear a difference.

This leaves us two possibilities:

1. You are correct
2. You are incorrect

I am asking you to explain, in the event that you are correct, how/why people hear a difference with different Ethernet cables.

I've had this exact conversation a number of times (see previous posts on Ethernet) and I always get one of three answers. I'm curious and hope that you can provide a new one.

Absolute Zero's picture

Confirmation bias. Also See the McGurk Effect:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G-lN8vWm3m0

I honestly think people are fooling themselves and there are some really simple ways of getting to the root of this. But there has to be a willingness to be accept the possibility of being proven wrong.

I'm willing to be proven wrong I just don't know if others are willing to sit down to explore other, possible, permutations.

If the material I provided can be ignored then I think it's not unfair for me to ignore the evaluation protocol (I'm required to use that term loosely) that generates these results.

Again with the OS powering the NIC down, with the Audio read ahead of listening, the evidence leads me to Expectation and Confirmation bias for the results.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
...is not a convincing argument, for me. There are any number of reasons, one being I had no expectations to confirm when I first compared Ethernet cables 4+ years ago. I'd also suggest that rounding up everyone who has heard a difference and suggesting they are all under the influence of confirmation/expectation bias, and this bias lasts years and years, seems about as likely a scenario as a fake moon landing ;-)

In all of the references you have provided, there is no reference to a system with a DAC. Noise currents, for example, that will have no impact on data transfer, can have an impact in a mixed signal system.

The 'test' of removing an Ethernet cable while the music is playing misses this basic possibility - that the physical connection, which needs to be...connected, to the system/DAC can impact the the D to A conversion process.

Of course, I'm only suggesting in a very basic manner, one possibility. There are people much more knowledgeable with mixed signal systems and noise who can go into greater detail about the real possibilities of this issue. Again, if you read the old posts on Ethernet here, you'll find some discussion along these lines.

Finally, for me, since I've been dealing with this topic for 4+ years and have read thousands (literally) of comments and responded to hundreds, I've yet to see a position from an "IT" person who also has the requisite knowledge to discuss the analog side of this equation. As if it doesn't matter.

Seeing as anyone can purchase an "audiophile" Ethernet cable and try it out in their system, I see no need for all of the "data-centric" theorizing. If the cable doesn't do anything for you, return it.

If you see no way that a cable can make a difference, don't try it.

Absolute Zero's picture

In what ways are cable construction going to cause such a variance in the final D/A with regards to 'Mixed signal systems'?

Since you are interested in mixed signal systems:

We want to find the current distribution curve of the return path (since it's AGND + DGND )we need to look at i(A/cm)=Io/pi(h) x 1/ 1+(D/h)squared of the system in regards to the DAC.
Where Io is the total signal current (A), h is the height of the trace(cm) and D = distance from trace.

And then keep taking measurements to see if the D/A changes in that regard to a change of the downstream cable.

I agree with you: Grounding in mixed-signal systems is of extreme importance as Digital systems are noisy. That includes, PCIe buss, memory bus, USB bus etc...

A competent DAC designer should be able to do this however. Whether it be Shottkey Diodes, Ferrite Beads, Decoupling Caps etc...

Henry Ott's "Partitioning and layout of a mixed-signal PCB" is a good start.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
So we have a basis for discussion other than expectation bias.

"A competent DAC designer should..." do a lot of things.

In my experience, theory and practice remain two separate words.

Cheers.

Absolute Zero's picture

We have a basis for measurement. Care does need to be taken in mixed signal systems. A dark art it is not.

Here is the thing: An Ethernet cable is only constructed in a few possible ways. If UTP it's really simple: You terminated 8 conductors to either TIA 586A or 586B spec.

With STP it's either floated shield, partially tied, fully tied. It's upon the manufacturers to substantiate claims. Whether it be lower packet loss through put, better mixed signal ground plane performance downstream.

I'm taking you at value on the mixed-signal systems and the primary concerns is getting the grounding proper so there isn't pollution from the Digital side polluting the more sensitive analog components.

So with the above said:

Should I purchase a $300, $1200, $2400 to fix a poorly designed DAC or should I just purchase a well designed DAC?

Doing some form of bias controlled listening is another form of measurement. Again I'm willing to explore this but it has to be with some controls in place. Harman Kardon makes great products using this approach. Speaking of which have you had a chance to hear the JBL M2's BTW?

Michael Lavorgna's picture
...the JBL M2's - my beat keeps me mainly within the 'computer audio' realm.

In terms of what you should buy, that is certainly up to you. A review does not tell people what to buy, it tells people, ideally, how the thing being reviewed sounds in the reviewer's system *to the reviewer*.

The mistake I think some readers make is to assume that a review is revealing "the truth" (I've seen people use those words) or even "the best". This is a hobby whose concern is the enjoyment of music. Objective stances have no real relevance unless you want to suggest that your (I don't mean you) point of view supersedes all others.

Do I know people who own "audiophile" Ethernet cables? Yup. Do I view this as some sort of problem? Nope.

Absolute Zero's picture

I'm suggesting the TI and Siemons papers make those view points irrelevant in terms of SQ until data is presented, data that is independently reproducible, refutes what is said in those papers.

Currently it's about the information provided and where I put my trust as a reader.

To each their own.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
Indeed.
Absolute Zero's picture

It's just information. You can take away what you want / don't want from it.

Just realize that 99% of the time you are listening to music where the NIC / cable was involved with what you are currently hearing possibly 30 to 600 seconds (setup dependent) and it could be even more than that :-)

So here is another point to consider: Since we know the music is buffered, would you be able to pin point the moment that the cable was removed even though the music will still be playing?

Steven Plaskin's picture

No its verbosity. I am damn sure you have never heard the Wireworld cable. I guess is doesn't fit your preconceived views of how the world should work. And I'm also sure that all power cords sound the same to you.

Absolute Zero's picture

What I'm wanting to know is what is your understanding of Data networks, the non-realtime nature, and how the cabling affects sound?

If I have enough buffer to hold an entire track and the cable is effectively shut down because the Operating System just killed power to the NIC. Well, what I am asking is what is it that you specifically listening to in that buffer and why does it have variance vs another cable that filled that buffer?

I don't feel that is verbosity and I don't think you are being fair in that regard.

If a UTP CAT 6 is shrugging off EMI of 18v/meter up to 30Mhz and STP is good to 100Mhz. Well those are just characteristics of the standard. I would think that kind of noise immunity is a good thing.

Is there anything factually wrong with the T.I. or Siemons papers?

Michael Lavorgna's picture
...that everyone who uses an Ethernet cable needs to have an "understanding of Data networks" that meets some criteria of yours?

And that everyone who hears a difference between Ethernet cables needs to be able to discuss the relative merits of the " T.I. or Siemons papers"?

If you take a step back from your monitor, take a deep breath and *see* where you are, I think you'll recognize that your line of inquiry is misplaced.

Absolute Zero's picture

What I am saying is that Ethernet is a data cable. It's a long stretch to affecting the the D/A on a well designed DAC.

I think people ascribing all these real time terms may need to come to grips with how Ethernet works.

*If* what people are saying is happening with Ethernet cables I should be able to setup two RAM disks of 70MB each, transfer a track into each one with each cable and in Foobar use the comparitor feature. It is fundamentally the same thing.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
Here's why (more or less): Open and Tolerant: MBL's Juergen Reis on Listening, Measurements, and (Un)Certainty.

I'm a fan of listening to people who have experience in the topic at hand as opposed to people whose point of view is based in theory.

Absolute Zero's picture

I don't find that article at odds with what I've been posting in thread. He heard something that is understood in real terms, in scientific terms, in engineering terms, and found supporting documentation @ Bell Labs.

I presented documentation from T.I. and Siemons and am accused of doing something. I don't think someone can be accused of verbosity :-) Would he have been considered verbose for providing information from industry experts?

I found this excerpt poignant and completely agree:

From time to time I come across some tweaks and products that I really do not totally understand from the "engineering" standpoint, but I am open to giving them a try. And so it also happens from time to time, that after some time I find a suitable measurement that wasn't in my mind when I first "tested" a questionable tweak or product.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
He's speaking from experience about the issues relevant to audio. He is not pulling quotes from IT papers.
Absolute Zero's picture

I've yet to see a bias controlled positive result to properly built Ethernet cables affecting sound. I've had a few in my system and both listening (regardless if on my AKG 701's or my Quads), and measurements I haven't found a difference. Hence my looking at research to inform why there was not a measurable difference with CLIO 10 or RightMark.

I'll hit up a reseller.

The only thing I've read is that, not only a linear, but a balanced linear power supply on the network router/switch would make an appreciable difference.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
...since you are looking for something that you value, I would not jump to any conclusions when you don't find it here. Unless of course you want to posit yourself as an authority on a universally important "you".

;-)

Michael Lavorgna's picture
...you can buy the WW cable, and others, on Amazon. This will get you a 30-day trial and if you find it makes no difference, and while I'm not normally a betting man my bet is you won't, you can return it.

If you're like the other "purveyors of truth", you'll then spend an inordinate amount of time, years in some cases, posting how Ethernet cables make no difference on audio forums.

Steven Plaskin's picture

Why not quote 10 papers. The real problem is that you fail to address the real issue; the one I constantly have to ask:

Have you any real experience with the Wireworld Ethernet cable?

I recognize your agenda-and you knowing full well that we don't perform measurements at AS, just what type of reception did you expect? This is an audiophile enthusiast site, not an engineering forum.

And no, I didn't close my eyes when listening.

Yes you can be accused of verbosity. I think most of us get it. I would be more impressed with you if you just said that I was full of crap!

It appears that your real joy is not listening to audio, but arguing with people you feel are less intelligent or informed than yourself. You just can't help yourself.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
What I find interesting in this exchange is that Mr. Absolute Zero has yet to make his point...directly. So far we've got information, but no relevant conclusion drawn from same. This is more than likely due to one's personal style, but I'm not a fan of cat 'n mouse.

On a related note, there's another anonymous person who likes to refer to Siemens and TI papers re. Ethernet over on Chris Connaker's site. That anonymous person happens to be rude and condescending so I'm pleased to see that our "Absolute Zero" is polite.

Getting back to your comments Steve, I'd agree in that these "Ethernet Educators" never, ever, talk about listening to music.

Absolute Zero's picture

The papers I found on a thread at Whats Best forum just an FYI.

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&...

Michael Lavorgna's picture
Another forum I have no interest in. In this case, the name tells me all I need to know.
Absolute Zero's picture

Just letting you know where I saw T.I. and Siemons written up. The other source of information is Henry Ott and that was through my Universities Engineering School library.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
...you'd have found references to TI papers and Henry Ott right here.
Absolute Zero's picture

I'm just letting you know where I initially saw reference to the papers. Was T.I.'s 'Radiated Emissions for 10/100 LAN applications' posted somewhere else at Audiostream?

Michael Lavorgna's picture
...as someone capable of managing a search.

Question: are you capable of getting to your point?

Absolute Zero's picture

The only point I have to make is that while Anecdote is indeed fascinating, it's not data.

Everyone is allowed their personal truth. I'm simply curious how this would extrapolate when biases are controlled for.

No big deal as information presented can speak for itself and thanks for the Juergen Reis Q/A. I'll get a 3 meter Starlight CAT8 ~ Friday from Amazon.

Michael Lavorgna's picture
Nice choice of words there, chief.

"Everyone is allowed their personal truth."

Truth? As in alternative fact ;-)

"I'll get a 3 meter Starlight CAT8 ~ Friday from Amazon."

Enjoy your data!

Michael Lavorgna's picture
Here is a post by John Swenson over on the CA forums that you should find of interest:

Ethernet Cables

While the entire post is worth reading, here's one teaser quote:

"When testing these PHYs we actually use a $700 cable to give the PHY the best signal integrity possible in order to find the baseline low power usage. These $700 cables use very expensive materials and extremely high precision geometry to have the least possible degradation on the signal."
For me, the takeaway from John's post, and follow up comments, is that there is certainly more to this story than most "IT" data-centric people are aware of and this "more" leaves ample room for the possibility of Ethernet cables impacting the analog output of a network-connected hi-fi.
Absolute Zero's picture

Says:

"On expensive Ethernet cables from audio cable makers, I'm fairly skeptical that they know what they are doing. I DO know what it takes to make a REALLY good cable, and what I have seen from the audio cable companies does not even come close to this. If these cables wind up sounding better I think it is much more likely to be an accident than any form of exceptional cable construction. And BTW making a cable with VERY low signal degradation DOES cost a lot of money, maybe the companies that make these should look into the audiophile market!"

Just thought to post it for some balance.

Steven Plaskin's picture

I think its great that you share this information with us. But the reason for making a cable like the Wireworld Starlight Ethernet Cable is to listen to it. It's all about the contribution this cable makes to the enjoyment of one's music. And this is something that the sources you quoted fail to address.

alexxx84962's picture

I use these three exact cables in my system and to me the Wireworld was a bit of disappointment after reading so many positive reviews of it.

alexxx84962's picture

Talking about cat8 ethernet cable, I can say that the AQ just sounds more natural, has better separation of instruments. For sure, things may change since I have only 200 hrs on the cables" all have to compare again at each 100 hr mark till they have 5 or 600 hrs on them.

tjencks's picture

Interesting thread ... I think the guy who is arguing that an ethernet cable can't make a difference has it 100% ... some other guy has got linear power supplies on his wireless router...LOL.

The bottom line is, if I swallow a placebo ... and I believe I am better and well...then whatever I swallowed actually was a cure whether there is any real engineering or research behind it or not.

If I spent $5k on an ethernet cable I'm sure I would hear the difference ... how could I not after spending 5k. the mind is thee most powerful device.

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