Opinions on using a linear power supply for NUC and/or router

What is the general consensus on audio quality benefits (or not) to using a linear power supply to power a NUC that is NOT directly connected to the DAC. Specifically, would there be any benefit to powering a NUC that is wired via ethernet to a network router? The DAC/integrated amp in question (Devialet Expert) is also connected to the router via ethernet. Any additional or alternative benefits by powering the router with a linear power supply?

I realize any perceived benefits are somewhat controversial but would be interested in hearing a variety of opinions.


You will get various responses to your comment. Recently, I added SBooster liner power supplies to my UltraRendu and my NUC i7 running ROCK. I perceived improvements in sound quality with each step. Cleaner sound and improvements in sound stage. For instance, on the UltraRendu (which feeds an Oppo HA-1) the width of the sound stage improved. The instruments and/or vocals that are mixed to the sides appear about an inch or so behind my ears with the headphones on (Oppo PM1s) whereas before they were a bit in front of my ears.

Also, well recorded (and that is the key) vocals are cleaner. Favorite example is Neil Diamonds Stones and Serenade albums (192/24).

As far as powering a network switch with a linear power supply, well I have not tried that. However, I suspect that is in the same category of $$$ Ethernet cables - won’t make any difference. Going further would be to power my Synology NAS by a liner power supply, but that again is excess.

In summary, I think that anything that is directly involved in processing music files will benefit from a linear power supply. Once you get into moving bits around your network, I am not sure it will make any difference. But, again, others may have other opinions.

If you searched, you would have found a whole thread on this:

I read that entire thread before posting. Apart from the large off topic discussion on Ohm’s law, my specific question isn’t answered. Thanks.

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Thanks for your thoughtful response. Seems like it may be worth a try given the negligible cost.

What are you considering to use for a negligible cost? Ifi?

In my experience there are no benefits if the end point is done properly. But the other thread should have told you that seeking consensus is virtually impossible on a subject like this! There are a number of power users on forums like Computer Audiophile who use LPS’s at any point in the process but I am convinced in my own mind that is insurance rather than any solid proof of benefit. In my case using a router after a source of galvanic noise like a power plug was beneficial but again the benefits of powering that with an LPS was questionable. It is powered from its standard SMPS supply right now and I am not missing the LPS.
I would concentrate on things like keeping cable lengths short and avoiding media like Ethernet over power where possible. If not then experiment and see what you think because there is no perfect scenario where what is perceived to work for one will work for another.

Replace the word 'lps’in your post with ‘a better power supply’. There is a false consensus that smps is bad / lps is good. Wrong assumption. There are very good AND very bad power supplies of both kinds. Just trowing in a LPS without knowing the power demands of the equipment being fed is nothing more then a pure guess.


I was looking at the HDPlex unit. Is the iFi well regarded?

FWIW I power my NUC 7i5 with a 12v 5a generic Chinese R-Core LPS. Sounds great, but I already had the LPS so no idea how it differs from the supplied wall wart. I do have the 7i5 and proceeding switch on a different circuit than the dedicated ones for the hifi upstairs, though the circuit is the office one, which has a lot of noisy devices on it, so possibly the LPS’ on the switch and server keep some crud from coming through. So a lot of it has to do with position.

I use an HDPLEX upstairs - great value as one isn’t roped into single values. Sounds the same as the sub $200 Chinese one though.

Well yes the ifi is well regarded at its price point. It’s $49 on Amazon. I replaced it powering my ultra Rendu with a Sonora LPS-1.1. Don’t know anything about the HDplex. I’m following this thread because I’m interested in using the Ifi somewhere else in the chain.

This seems a long forgotten thread but I thought to post my experience here both with botw power supply and ifi dc ipower2. I have a deco mesh system with three hubs and have the botw power supplies on two of them and the ifi dc ipower 2 on one. Suffice to say if I replace any with the stock smps, the increase in noise levels in the streamed music is very noticeable. Also the roon streamer is an i7 gen 8 with a lps 12v 15amps from China, Three internal hard drives powered by an allo shanti lps. It all makes a difference!