Effect of Internet Service Quality on Streaming?

I’ve struggled for a long time with sound getting much, much worse around dinner time, and in some rare cases I don’t get depth, clarity, dynamics and imaging back until around midnight. Like many people I’ve attributed this to noise on my AC lines. But recently I’ve been wondering if maybe internet service quality is at least contributing to the issue in some manner. When I run tests it appears that speed, jitter, and latency are all higher at times when the sound is poor. That got me wondering if anyone knows whether one type of internet service is better than another for HiFi streaming? For example, is ADSL or DSL better, or does it matter? And what about speed? Particularly interested in anyone who has real world experiences from experimenting in this area…

@nyev just looked at your system pictures…couple of things you can try, if I may suggest…

1. Raise your cables off the floor. Cable elevators are not expensive. AQ makes decent ones called fog lifters. Lifting the speaker cables, interconnects and power cables off the floor in my system makes an audible difference.

2. try to position your signal cables as far away from power cables as possible or at least don’t lay them down close to one another in parallel - create a 90 degree angle and it should be ok

3. your amplifier is too close to your streaming components. The power supply can be creating an EMI there. I would move the Innuos stuff away from it about a foot at least if possible. I’ve found, in my system with all the amps I ever had that the system sounded its best with the amp on the floor or amp stand and as far away from source components as possible . This will probably minimize the noise your speaker cables may be picking up from the streamer / network components ascwell.

Again, just a thought and is cheap or even free to try.

Ok, this is really interesting… I am sure not so much for you.


+1 @audphile1 

You are comparing this to analog? I see some albums in your photos. Because this sounds like a power problem to me. My streamers are extremely insensitive to the incoming bitstream.


Are you direct wired into your streamer?

Do you have direct lines to your system.

I think I said this before… nice system.

What happens if you take your power conditioner out of the loop.

Can you borrow a different high end power conditioner… Everest or something?

@nyev There’s an old saying, "Madness takes it toll; please have exact change." Feel for you. I have gone through a months’ long house internet bugaboo that was h e double hockey sticks to sort out.

Is streamer hard wired?

It does seem like power is the bandit but is it something in your network? Given the excellence of your equipment, I imagine you have enterprise level or better stuff up stream of your streamer.

Have you asked, bribed or manacled your kids and others to cease web activity during the sound downturn times? This could be a revealing test. When there are problems the network pros always isolated it one part a time and build back in (I made this up but it sounds official). Run your system and then add back one other things, one at a time.

A few more pot shot thoughts. Have you swapped out power supply cables? Is something in the jumble of cables too close to something else?

St. Jude?


Thanks for the ideas All. My sound has not experienced a SIGNIFICANT dip in quality since Friday evening so I’ve not yet had the chance to test streamed vs local file during a “bad” period.

To answer a few questions that have come up:

  • No I don’t have a dedicated network line to my Innuos Zenith Mk3 streamer. I do have the Innuos PhoenixNET switch in front of my streamer/server.
  • During the bad periods before I’ve had family members stop their internet usage in the house and it didn’t improve things noticeably
  • I’ve upgraded power cables a number of times (have Audioquest Dragons now) and the major quality swings remain
  • I’ve tried several conditioners including the AQ Niagara 5000, a Shunyata Hydra, a Puritan PSM156, and also a Torus RM 20 isolation transformer and they all had equal swings in quality. None were any better than the other in this front so I highly doubt a different conditioner is the answer. Also sceptical that a PS Audio regenerator would produce better results, but I’d be open to that possibility. Not my first place to look to fix but something in the back of my mind.
  • Ahead of my Innuos PhoenixNET switch I just have the fiber modem from my ISP, feeding a the wifi router from my ISP which feeds an inexpensive D-Link switch in a smart panel (should I upgrade this???), with 60ft of generic new network cable going through my wall that eventually feeds my Innuos network switch. Maybe there is a problem here???
  • I need to update my system listed on Audiogon - I now have a Tambaqui DAC, the Innuos Zenith Mk3 and PhoenixUSB reclocker (no Grimm MU1 anymore), I have a Puritan PSM156 now, and I’ve upgraded my my speakers to Audiovector R6 Arrete’s. Also have upgraded all power cords to Audioquest Dragons.