Ethernet and USB cables

Do premium Ethernet and USB make a sonic difference? I have very good speaker and DAC to amp cables but, all the others are just inexpensive generic cables. I’m running Innuos Zenith MK III and about to try out a Phoenix USB. Just looking to get the most out of the system w/o throwing away more $ (unless it works!).

I think that I have a pretty resolving system, Wilson Sabrina X's, Pass 250.8, ARC REF 6 and an MSB Discrete DAC with a Premier Power base and a full loom of Shunyata Alpha v1 cables.  All my music is digital, either streamed or from my music server over the home network. To get from the music server in the next room, it had to go from the router down to the basement where all the house wiring (CAT 5e) and switches are for the network (at least 200 ft) and then back up again to the music room.  I ran a straight Supra CAT 8 from the router about 40 ft. from the router to the MSB in the next room.

So, does ethernet cable matter? Well, a little.  Yes, the system sounds slightly better, a little more definition in the soundstage, and the instruments sound slightly better.  But I mean SLIGHTLY.  Don't think that ethernet cables are going to blow you away, or be a night and day improvement.  You will MAYBE hear a difference, and even that difference might be expectation bias, or an acclimatization to the slight sonic differences, making you think that they are "better" because you have listened to them for a while and gotten used to them, making you think that you hear slight sonic differences.  Try switching back to the old ethernet cables and see if there is a difference and listen to them for a while too.  In short, upgrading your ethernet cables may make a slight audible difference, but it ain't much for the money that I blew on running the CAT 8.


my I suggest you insert a switch before your streamer or even better an Etherregen. ..and use a short cat8 cable to connect the two. 40ft between router and streamer is only workeable if you go optical, which alas has its own issues in the converters. If you want to go overboard, try an Innuos Phoenix Ethernet which reclocks the signal. ARGUABLY THIS APPLIES EVEN MORE FOR THE CONNECTION BETWEEN STREAMER AND DAC

I just received my Network Acoustic Muon Pro Series cabling system with a filter.  I am also incorporating a mini switch between the wall and my Lucas Audio LDMS Music server.  .

@oldhvymec Try reversing your expensive ethernet cable.  They are directional.  I experienced sharp edgy highs with my Pangea ethernet cables too, until I reversed them.  Then they beat out (but not by a lot) my $7 ethernet cables.  The Pangea improved the clarity a bit.  Overall tonal balance was the same.

@hysteve both the USB and the Ethernet cables can improve the sound. I tried several USB cables and the one I liked the most was the Audience AU24 se +. 
I also tried several Ethernet cables - Amazon CAT8, Supra CAT8, Purist, Network Acoustics Eno streaming system. The Eno system is the best of the bunch with Purist a close second. The NA Eno has a detailed but relaxed presentation, natural tone. How big is the difference? Not night and day but definitely enough to not go back to the cheaper cable.