Ethernet opinions

Hello everyone, I finally got my system setup. I had a few setbacks the past few months. My mom had lung cancer and passed away a month ago. It has been a journey getting my system set up which is part of the fun. I am running Pass Labs XP-12, pass 250.8, and Bricasti M3. My original plan was to run the Bricasti with a EERO mesh network since the modem is on the opposite end of the listening space. Needless to say the EERO mesh would not work and Roon could not see my M3. I was on the phone with Bricasti trouble shooting the issue. I removed my M3 from the system and double checked everything with it hard wired to the modem which worked. I was told I could really use any Ethernet for the most part as long as it’s cat 5 or 6. Well, I returned the EERO and got a 25 foot Ethernet cable from Best Buy for 10 dollars. The sound is much better then I was guessing running a 10 dollar cable, for me it’s deff a temp fix. Especially since I bought two audio quest vodka cables. I am using one of them now connecting the room nucleus to the modem at the moment. I have read a bit about blue Jean cables which seem to hold spec. I don’t see me buying a longer Audio quest vodka cable given the cost. In some ways I feel like I spent more then I should have on the Vodka cables at this point. Opinions please ?



Blue Jeans makes a good Cat 6 cable, you would be okay using them. Given the distance, you might consider using fiber. It is cheap to do, the cables are thin and easy to hide, and you get optical isolation. My system, which had a 30 ft Blue Jeans cable, was noticeably improved when I added the fiber. There is a long discussion of this in this forum, along with parts lists. Worth a try. 

I’m sorry for your loss, loosing loved ones are never easy.

Try this cable from your modem to your M3. You’re very likely to hear audible improvements over generic 25FT cable. The 22AWG version is bit stiffer so no sharp bends. The 26AWG version is more flexible. I am using 22AWG version and I’m extremely happy with the sound.

I thought about fiber option (due to long distance) but at this cost, the LINKUP is a no brainer. I am using a 50FT run from my modem to a switch next to my setup.

@shtr74sims - +1 for the @lalitk post - CAT8 cables are the best available out there right now.

Cat8 is a better overall cable geometry which results in higher throughput capabilities with fewer errors

One other thing to try -

  • put an Ethernet switch as close as possible to the streaming device, with a really short cat8 cables from the switch to the streamer
  • And if you want to go the extra mile,
    • get a battery pack for the switch,
    • or at lease a good 5V power supply

I’ve been told it improves the sound quality

Hope that helps - Steve

For digital cables I like silver plated copper.  It doesn't have to be expensive.  Audioquest starts silver plating cables with their inespensive forest line which is quite affordable for longer runs.

Going from wireless to wired is a blessing rather than a curse.  Huge upgrade in SQ.


@shtr74sims sorry for your loss.

As far as EERO with M3 and roon, I have zero issues. It’s been working fine for me. As far as ethernet options, you can run the above recommended ethernet cable, then insert an audiophile switch before the M3 (try it with return policy) with a higher end short 1M ethernet cable between switch and Bricasti. Just a thought. 

Just ordered an optical link setup, cat in, optical out, run 25 feet, optical in, shielded short patch cable, then to streamer.

The theory sounds reasonable. The analog noise will be removed and interference on the long run minimized so the end point signal should be “cleaner” than a long copper cable.

Was right at $100 to try it out, so, not a big investment to see if there is an audible difference.

Newegg, pair of mediaconverters $49

Optical cable: $32

Short shielded cat6, 99.9% ofc, gold plated:$7

plus tax etc…

@audphile1 I tried the mesh network because yours worked. I posted a while back and initially put this post in there but no one chimed in so I started this one this morning. The Bricasti would not even show up on Roon with the mesh. I don’t know much of anything on an audiophile switch. I would ideally like to use my other Vodka cable since I already have it or re sell it. I’m going to keep using the Best Buy cable until I figure out what to do next. Overall I am very happy so far with everything. I love both the Pass and Bricasti. 

The above recommended Linkup Cat 8 cable may not be your best choice. The Amazon web page for it states "*** This highly double shielded wires may not work with some non-10G equipment which cause “Antenna Effect” bottlenecking network speed (down to less than 100mbps). Please contact us for devices that are not supported.". The fiber optic solution described above is a much better approach with an inexpensive price point. A Cat 6 Blue Jeans ethernet patch cable is your best bet going from the media converters to your Ethernet RJ45 input jacks. Unlike almost all audiophile Ethernet cables, the Blue Jeans Cable comes with a test sheet from a Fluke cable tester which shows the cable meets its spec. Cables from Cat6A and above are meant for data center use which is a very high RF noise environment running at speeds above the 1 Gb. speed of most home networks. A good switch doesn’t need to be an "audiophile" switch. For example, a Cisco managed switch would be a better choice but does require some IT networking knowledge to setup. Overall, a much higher quality unit that most unmanaged switches or so-called Audiophile switches. The ability to use the management software to see what i going on with your network in terms or issues or high error rates is much more useful feature than some inexpensive repackaged. switches which claim to have better sound.

Adding the switch will allow you to use your AQ Vodka cable into the M3. Also, managed network switches aren’t necessary. Unless you want to tinker around with settings constantly. 

Why the EERO didn’t work? Did you have your roon core on the EERO network?

As @audphile1 mentions, roon has to be on the same network as the device.  I have an audiophile switch upstream of my streamer.  I have a short, high quality (I think Vodka) cable between the switch and the streamer.  I have my Roon core on the same switch.  I didn't think it had to be on the same switch but when I put it back at the router, roon didn't see the streamer.  So I didn't fight it, I left my roon core on the same switch as the streamer.


@audphile1 it was on the same network. I had both the Roon nucleus and the M3 connected to the modem via ethernet and the EERO network. I also talked to two different people at Bricasti, one said it would not work and the other told me they have customers using the EERO. Can you show me the audiophile switch you have mentioned please ? I’m open to options, just don’t want to feel like it’s a weak link. Feels funny I have a great system and what is making it work at the moment is a 10 dollar Ethernet cable. 


@lalitk I checked out the cable you mentioned. I feel it’s going to take me some time to think it all though. I do like the idea of the switch and adding the Vodka cable I already have to plug into my M3. I suppose I will use the 10 dollar cable I have now until I sort it all out. Thank you 


English Electric Network Switch

keep in mind I haven’t tried this but know people who had. 
Please do your research and buy from a place that offers full refund. 
Or buy used. 
Good source for info on ethernet switches and filters is Hans Beekhuysen on YouTube. 

@audphile1 I will look into it for sure. I never even thought about a switch until now. Thank you 😊 

If you decide to try it, do this…order it from anywhere that will take it back for a refund, and order a D-Link DGS-105 from a-zon. Compare the two. Helps with decision making process to compare a $700 switch to a $23 one. Use your AQ Vodka from switch to M3. Then compare with cheap ethernet direct from router into M3. Let your ears decide the best configuration. 

@audphile1 thats a good suggestion. I was thinking of running the blue jean Ethernet under the carpet since it’s known to be in spec. Then putting the switch on the rack and running the Vodka to the M3. Doing this I would have a AQ Vodka from modem to nucleus as well. At the moment the cheap cable is out running a long the wall in view. Told the wife be patient with me until I figure it all out. Haha. 

Use two fiber media converters to clean out all noise and add in lightning protection. I have this using the lan on my dac snd it was one of the best bang for buck upgrade ever. Did the same on my Apple TV snd picture is stunning.

@sgreg1 can you explain a little more please ? I have never heard of this, I did read a little online and it’s not expensive from what I read. 

Another thread where people with 0 knowledge tell people to waste money. 

there is 0 theoretical improvements possible in a residential setting to “upgrade”.

there is no noise to remove. Ethernet noise floor is at -160 dB, so even if there was you have to be Superman to hear any difference, and only if digital noise translates to analogue, which is obviously does not.

There are no empirical evidence to support any claims made by anyone in this thread. 


the only recommendation is buy a decent cable that gives you a good connection, which you already have. Like someone else pointed out, cat 8 cables are for 10G links, and so far I have yet to see a consumer streaming solutions supporting 10G.



@fredrik222 morning, one of the techs at Bricasti told me he uses generic Ethernet pretty much. He also said in his experience Ethernet is not an audio cable, it just passes information. There is so much out there these days. Seems the only way really is for someone to try it on their own. I have to admit the cable I do have sounds pretty good. I am curious to how much it would change. 

@shtr74sims yeah, there is a lot of people who wants you to waste money out there. 

on a different note, I am researching new streamers, so thanks for adding Bricasti to my list!

My house is fully wired with Ethernet, and it's all cat 5, which still works fine at speeds of 1GB, and will almost certainly work fine with 2.5GB when those switches come down in price.

In addition virtually every wall outlet plugs into a relatively inexpensive hub which feeds the receiver, the apple tv and one or two other things.  Everything works fine, there is no packet loss and changing cables around, particularly with the short cable run in most houses (300 feet is a short run) won't make a difference unless one of the cables is broken internally.

Remember, your DAC does not directly consume the output of Ethernet (which is an analog signal).  Inside each piece of equipment with an Ethernet jack is an Ethernet chip that decodes the signal and converts it to 1's and 0's.   So changing wires won't make a lick of difference.

If the sound isn't quite where you expect it in your equipment, it probably has a lot more to do with the acoustics of your room or the recording than anything.

@fredrik222 I got mine from a dealer off this site. I would most definitely do business with him again. It shipped directly from Bricasti. 

@shtr74sims I have a little experience at this ;)

And I'm sympathetic to the guys who want to improve their systems.   I want to do that too! And truly I don't care if guys want to spend money if something make them feel good.

But if you're interested in improving your sound, then I'm an advocate for actually attacking the problem, which is much more likely to be your listening room and source material than the quality of your ethernet cable or USB hub.

@shtr74sims everything matters especially at the level you’re playing at. There’s plenty of resolving power in those components to let you know what each change had added and taken away. 

@carlsbad2 what do you think streaming actually is? Yeah, you download one song after another into a buffer. 

unless you of course listen to a radio station that has a true continuous stream. 

but, per usual, ignorance continues, and people who doesn’t want learn starts attacks like this….

@audphile1 cant convince you that grass is green and the sky is blue, that we know. But fun fact, even Jay from Jay’s audio lab says don’t waste your money on Ethernet cables! 

Dam you people are making me look at an upgraded ethernet cable. I need to stop reading this forum. It's costing me too much money (LOL)

+1, @audphile1


As you said in one of your posts, “seems the only way really is for someone to try it on their own”. Fortunately, you do own a component that will allow you to hear even a slightest change. The LINKUP cable I recommended backed by Amazon return policy so you got nothing to loose.


@fredrik222 I got to say that audphile1 has been nothing but kind in his responses. He has given me feedback often. 

@shtr74sims  I am sure he has, until you start putting out those pesky things like facts, then the name callings comes.

I'm in the camp that the upgrading the ethernet connection will not help or have anything to do with sound quality.  Just make sure it's Cat5e or Cat 6 and that the cable is well terminated and you will be fine. 

The best solution, if you can swing it, is to run an ethernet drop from where you modem/router is to where you streamer/DAC is.  If you are in a single-story house, you can probably run the cable through the attic and down the walls to ports on both sides.  Nice and clean.

Just FYI, 96/24 only needs around 6 MBits /s of Ethernet, 128/24 only needs around 8 Mbits. Any Ethernet cable made in the last 20 years would work. and still have plenty left over. :)

Cat 5 at 100 Mbit/s has 13x more capacity than you'd need at 128/24, while 1GigE 130x more. 



I wish I didnt hear marked differences between high quality cable A, high quality cable B and the excellent linkup/Amazon cable. While my own experience is far from scientific, I found streamed Qobuz/Tidal music over the Linkup sounded excellent but several considerable steps behind the same tracks stream from the internal storage of my server/streamer. High quality cable A sounded better but still behind those streamed from the internal drive and high quality cable B (my current reference) streamed files sound virtually indistinguishable from the files on the internal drive.


Try things and if you don’t hear a positive difference then don’t keep them. Don’t believe anything or anyone but your ears.

@ghasley i do agree with you 💯. It doesn’t hurt to ask opinions try gain more knowledge though. My last system was 15 years old. It was a Rotel 10 series with B&W 600s. This is my first DAC, it’s fascinating to me what has changed over the years. 

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@carlsbad2 projecting much today? Qobuz is pretty clear about this. They even have a cache locally, so once you have listened to a song it is stored locally, ready for to listen to again.... 

It's readily available to learn about on their support site. 

Tidal is the same, also available on their support site. 

In summary, yes, you actually do not stream music from Tidal or Qobuz, you download and then playback. 

Sorry about your Mom. Just use Blue Jean cables. You won’t tell a difference.  

@12many thank you, thats kind of where I am right now. I am curious about the switch and using my AQ Vodka cable to the DAC. Reason being for the Blue Jean is they are in spec really. 

What would most of you guys do ? Run an Ethernet across the room from modem to dac ? Or run Ethernet across the room into a switch then use the AQ Vodka into dac ? Just curious… 

I read a comparison test once where the user tested 5-6 high-end (some VERY high-end) ethernet cables and included a BJC as a sort-of baseline. Guess which one he ended up liking best? I myself tested a DH Labs Reunion Cat 8 cable (about $200) against a BJC and could not hear any difference at all. I'm not cable agnostic, I believe in buying nice cables where it counts, but ethernet is not included in that group. BJC is an excellent cable, it's just not a "luxury" cable.

shtr74sims OP

50 posts


What would most of you guys do ? Run an Ethernet across the room from modem to dac ? Or run Ethernet across the room into a switch then use the AQ Vodka into dac ? Just curious… 

It’s all very subjective.
I would try both with switch and without. 
I would also try a basic ethernet cable into FMC 1, convert to fibre optic then into FMC 2 out with AQ Vodka for the last 0.75m or 1.5m into Bricasti. 
All of the above can be experimented with while taking advantage of full return/refund policies. You will spend few hours but walk away with knowledge and experience plus the best possible configuration that works in your system.

Just my opinion. 

@audphile1 how about a real review? Hans can’t figure out how to turn a switch on, let alone understand how it works.