What is the latest greatest USB add on device?


What is the latest greatest USB add on device?

I have been out of the USB arena for a while. Last I remembered there was an Uptone Regen, iFi, Intonia, Mutec, and the Disrupter.
I still own the Disrupter and I just tried it again and it did seem to improve the USB signal.
Is there any new USB devices that I should consider? It would be used between a Bryston BDP-2 USB player and a PS Audio Direst Stream Dac.

ozzy
ozzy
Ok, then does anyone use one of these add on USB devices?

ozzy
Love the IFi Micro USB 3 with a good linear power supply for it. Nice improvement in my rig. Less noise and greatly reduced digital artifacts. Music flows more naturally with improved musicality. Also need a couple of good USB cables with it.
Thanks grannyring for your comments. I was beginning to think that no one is using USB .
Has anyone tried the newer version of the Regen called the ISO Regen?
ozzy
well I'm sure its not the latest or greatest but I've been using a Schiit Bifrost 4490 USB DAC with a Schiit Wyrd USB regenerator streaming Spotify premium from my MacBook Air and I am pretty satisfied with it. Been in this hobby for 40 + yrs. and have tried a lot of systems along the long and winding road and am just enjoying the music these days.  the only item I may add is the Schiit Eitr USB to SPDIF converter.......hmm.
Thanks radiomanjh,

I found a used ISO Regen on the gon and just bought it. I am going to wait to upgrade to any $$$ power supply until I asses the usefulness of the ISO Regen.
Anyone have experience with the ISO Regen?

ozzy
I use a SoTM tX USBUltra with input from the server and output into the ISO Regen. Each of these powered by separate Uptone Audio UltraCap LPS 1.2 power supplies. Nice improvement in sound quality. In my system this combination beats other devices I tried including Intona and iFi.
I bet it does.  Nice stuff for sure. Much more costly for sure.  Love the SoTM line.  
jaybe,

I have read some good things about the SoTM tX USB. Did you get the Master Clock option? Where did you purchase yours?

ozzy
My box of tricks is the PS Audio Lan Rover between my PC and my PS Audio Direct Stream DAC and have found a big improvement compared to USB straight from PC to DAC. I also have found that 2 high quality USB cords give a much better sound.
Does the Lan Rover sends the signal through an ethernet cable?

ozzy
Hi Ozzy yes the lan rover send the signal from box to box but if like me your PC and your amp or preamo are close together then you will only need inches of cable. I will stess tough that Ps Audio say that you can use a mediocre cable from Pc to sending device but I will counter that by saying that two usb cables of the same quality give a marked improvement so I am using Telurium Ultra silver and once they are broken it they give a stunning sound . Just a little bit of patience is all that's needed, I stuck the device through my PC with internet radio playing continuously and after a fornight  the sound just seemed to explode out of my phones, I now love it.
Thanks yoby and jim204, for the link and the comments.

ozzy

Please forgive my terrible spelling as I was rushing to get out of the house and my typing fingers were all over the place. Once again sorry!!!
No problem, your message was clear.

ozzy
So I just received the ISO Regen. It was very cold out of the box from shipping and was just so-so sounding. Later on last night it seemed to open up and I thought it sounded pretty good.
I also have on order the SOtM txUSB ultra the "Special Edition" along with a couple Regen LPS 1.2. I also have the Curious USB cables.

So we shall see how all this comes together. I am expecting great things...

ozzy

 
@ozzy Seeing your question late. Got the txUSB from Crux Audio. Guess you already made a buy.
I also use a Curious cable but am happier with it coming into the SoTM rather into the DAC. Nice cable but in my system it can sound a bit wild. Using the TWL USB cable from SoTM to ISORegen. Not bad but not done looking.
jaybe,

So did you get the external clock option?
I didn't but I did get the "Special Edition" which is supposed to have upgraded caps, wiring and EMI shielding.

ozzy
ozzy, I did get the ext clock option but am not using it yet. Don't remember if I got the SE edition or not. In any case what you might hear with the tx is a more "solid" sound, better details, things just sound better overall. I'm not really one to descibe this well, but the proof is in the listening. You should be happy.
jaybe,

Did it take some break in time?

ozzy
So, I now have the ISO Regen connected to the output of the SOtM txUSB ultra SE with the supplied standard wall wart power supplies. (The Regen LPS 1.2's won't arrive till after the holidays). 

This combo sounds a little better than when I just used the USB Disrupter but frankly I was expected a lot more. 
Does the power supply with these devices really make that much difference?

ozzy
I find for USB cable add on i prefer iFi Audio iSilencer iDefender and iPurifier
 I also use a Pangea 1.5 meter Premier SE USB cable in my Mac Book Pro.
Thanks cincyjim5,

iFi and Pangea makes some very good performing cables and at affordable prices.

Merry Christmas!
ozzy
I don’t understand all the hate on the USB Disruptor. I’ve read the computeraudiophile.com forum thread and personally I think the people on that thread that trash the Disruptor come off as complete ass***es. For $100 the USB Disruptor cleaned up the USB output from my computer to a NAD M51 DAC.

NOTE: I’m not an audio or computer noob. I am an enterprise IT architect and consider myself a fairly well informed geek when it comes to audio. The computeraudiophile.com thread where they gloat about banning the guy who sells the USB Disruptor reeks of lameness. If you’re gonna beat on someone for selling fools gold, how about the Totem Beaks?
Merry Christmas and great New Year, OZZY.
 Can’t wait my new Christmas gift arrive 
Wyred 4 Sound 2v2 DAC with Femto Clock.
jeenam,

I am with you on the USB Disrupter it was that unit that caused me to reach further into the usb decrapifiers universe. It is well worth the price.

cincyjim, 

I hear ya we are all like kids when it comes to a new audio toy!  I have been waiting patiently for my 2 Uptone LPS 1.2 usb power supplies for my recently acquired ISO Regen and SOtM usb units.

Lets hope the NEW YEAR brings joy and happiness to all!
ozzy
If you don't mind spending the money there is NOTHING that can touch the equipment below.

There is nothing actually even close but like everything that is outstanding it is expensive but IMO worth it.

If you want best bang for buck get the Uptone Audio ISO Regen and power it via Ultra Cap LPS 1.2 but if you want the best then on read below. 

Actually the best is to dump USB and jump on the Ethernet train as it is leaving USB in the dust but that is another topic and you asked for USB and this combo bellow has no peers.
_____

SOtM: tX-USBultra special edition: $1,470.00
- with external master clock input add (50 ohm): $300.00  
- 9V
https://sotm-usa.com/products/copy-of-tx-usbultra-regenerator-1?variant=12385178550351

______

sCLK-OCX10 Reference Master Clock: $3.500.00
https://sotm-usa.com/products/sclk-ocx10

______

SOtM: sPS-500 Power Supply: $500
- Y cable stranded 7N UPOCC Copper 30cm: +$300
https://sotm-usa.com/products/sps-500-power-supply?variant=40218821772

______

If you don't have a high quality USB Server option then get this one below also and pick another PS.

_______

sMS-200ultra Neo Special Edition: $1.400 
- with ethernet switch mode: + $300
- with external master clock connector add (50 ohm): + $200
- 9V
https://sotm-usa.com/products/sms-200ultra-special-edition-1

Impossible to say Ethernet on any other method is better than usb as there are just too many factors and options. We’re are just in the infancy of this medium.  Here are just two areas that transform your digital front end.  

Those expensive power suppliers just talked about in the previous post will be beat handily by a $130 Teradak with a few smart mods. The biggest mod is to add one of these LT3045 power supplies ...

https://www.mpaudio.net/product-page/s-hpuln

The LT3045s circuits are amazing in what they will do for your sound. 

Also, the DC cable used on the all important linear power supplies is absolutely critical. Read this and build one. Your sound quality will be improved ways you never imagined. 

https://www.usaudiomart.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1465

Just so many variables we are just beginning to learn about  that turn “computer or digital based front ends” into beautiful music makers rivaling any big dollar analog rig.  


@grannyring   didn't know about these mods you describe. The cable one is easy. The PS one, not so much as I'm not an electronics guy. Happen to know who can take one of these Teradaks and raw mpaudio modules and make it into a more finished product? 
Well I mod these regularly for customers.  I happen to have one available.  Here is what you can do or tech you trust.  Buy a Teradak DC30 and replace all the electrolytic caps with long hour Nichicon HW caps. Add chassis dampening, Perfect Path Contact enhancer in key areas. Replace cheap resistors with Mills MRA.  Peplace filter bypass caps with Sonicaps. 

Build one of the Poe cables as outlined in the link I gave and at the end of that cable place the Mpaudio or similar unit like this just before feeding the device you are powering.

If the device needing power is spec’d for 1.5amps or under, then this more affordable LT3045 power supply is great. The $95 one in a nice case. 

http://www.ldovr.com/category-s/123.htm





Well I received the (2) Uptone LPS 1.2 power units for my ISO Regen and SOtM usb.

So, now I hear that upgrading the DC power cables to star quad will also improve sound quality. 
Grannyring or any others, what do you think?
https://www.ghentaudio.com/part/dc-gac4.html

ozzy
Any impression of the PSs yet?

Yes DC cables make a difference. Hard to believe. The Ghents are good, and good value. Uptone also sells some better DC cables as well, or at least used to I believe, not sure if they’re on the website. One of the two SoTM distributors in the US did as well, and so does Zenwave Audio.

Or why not try the POE route, not much cost and good results reported.
jaybe,

Uptone actually recommended the Ghents. So, I went an ordered 2 of them. $85 a piece including shipping is not all that bad.

ozzy
Well the starquad DC does not come close to the more difficult to build Poe DC cable.  However they are much better than stock. 
@jaybe   @grannyring   Is the POE a diy build? Can you share more information on the construction? Thanks. 
@david_ten. Link above
POE stands for power over ethernet. (I looked it up)

ozzy
Ozzy, thanks. I know what POE is. I was curious about the specific construction...thanks for pointing me to the link, Jaybee.
These are not that easy to build, however the OP of that thread will make you properly wired 8 port Poe units. It involves cutting unwanted traces and soldering short wire jumpers to the board.

I ordered mine from the OP as I am too busy to mess with it right now. I am going to build the same cable without all the Poe connectors and see if it sounds as good. I won’t be able to get to that for another month however.

I made starquad DC cables for folks just like Ghent’s and with better wire. However, my customers tell me the Poe based cables are just another big step up!

I read through most of that thread to understand what the OP did.
My first experience with Poe to be frank and it took me awhile to get it.
@grannyring  Bill, thank you.
@grannyring , is the OP that you reference, 'tubelover2 'from the usaudiomart thread? Thank you.
grannyring,

I ordered and then cancelled 2 pairs of the POE from tubelover2.
There just seemed to be way too many cables to accomplish the task. 

ozzy
I get it.  I will compare my more aesthetic version of the Poe and comment.  
Isn’t most of the PoE benefit still there with the original single ethernet cable though, and as it’s said better than any normal DC cable? So still woth the $15 cost and 3 minutes to put it together. I’m going to pull the trigger on this soon as I get a bit of time and check it out, will report back. One from the LPs to ISORegen, another from LPS to SoTM tx unit.
Before I received the Uptone LPS 1.2 units, I was using a linear supply unit that I got from China. With this unit I was able to power both the ISO Regen and the SOtM usb.

After receiving the Uptone LPS 1.2 units I thought that they would be even better being first powered by the same Chinese linear power supply. But no dice, it couldn’t handle the power demands of the Uptone LPS 1.2 units.

Now I feel that the Uptone power supply is about equal in sound quality to my Chinese linear power supply sans the LPS 1.2 units.
So, we shall see what the Ghents add.

Another concern is the Uptone LPS 1.2 that is powering the SOtM unit gets very hot and it is not easy to turn off when not using. There is a power button on the back, but it very hard to reach and you must use your finger nail to make the selection.

ozzy
I have 2 PoE cables installed now, one on the txUltra and one on the ISORegen. Only a few hours on them. Still evaluating but definitely not the bang I expected by the feedback on usaudiomart forum. I’ll give it some time. My system is AR pre, custom server, Vega DAC, Pass amp, ATC speakers. I consider the DAC the weakest link.

Wondering if Ozzy and I have both reached the points of diminishing returns with tweaks but in different ways and routes. For my system the Uptone LPSs which replaced an HDPlex LPS did make a good difference.
Jaybe, are you using the better Dual Cat or the lesser single Ethernet cable with those pigtail style Poe injectors? I am using the Dual Cat with two 8 port Poe injectors, Monoprice Ethernet cables and a final starquad Mundorf silver/gold 6 inch DC cable into the powered unit. The impact of this was immediately heard. Lower noise floor, improved resolution etc.., I thought it was a bit thin sounding however so I made a Duelund starquad six inch DC cable for both ends of my Dual Cat. One coming out of my SOTM 500 power supply into the Poe and a second coming out of the Poe into my SOTM TXusbUltra. Wow! Wonderful now.

My rig is as tweaked out and dialed in as any I have heard and the benifit is real and immediately discerned. Now the thread creator states the more simple single Cat with those cheap Poe pigtails is not nearly as good as the Dual Cat. The Dual Cat squared is even better I understand.

This whole topic has so many options and levels of improvement that it can be hard too keep up. The language is also confusing as I am finally getting my head around it.
@grannyring 

I am using these items below, these are what's first called out on the usaforum post but sourced from Amazon. Also followed his directions, DC cable out from source, into POE pigtail, with the far end pigtail into the powered unit. Two sets, one for Regen one for txUSB--   LPS>DC cable>Poe>ethernet cable>Poe>txUSB / ISO Regen

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00QV1F1C4/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01LX1WL2Z/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Even with these basic components there is great feedback on that forum. Not here though, at least not yet. Trying to keep it simple as I'm not an electrical/electronics guy.

If there is a better plug and play method maybe you could please point me towards those components.