Linear Power Supplies - any improvement in sound?

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Re: Linear Power Supplies - any improvement in sound?

Postby bertie » 23 Apr 2017, 12:45

I'm quite interested in this topic and had tentatively reached the conclusion from digesting hundreds of websites that moving away from a switchmode supply was a no-brainer for all the digital signal devices in my hifi.

Sad to say, though, when I recently connected my raspberry pi (with DigiPro hat) and its wired harddrive (self-powered) to two separate power packs I could not (definitively at least) hear any difference. This was an initial test to find out whether it was worth buying 3 linear power supplies (including another one for my DAC).

Now, these lithium devices have quite high internal resistance (apparently) compared with, say, a nickelhydride battery or 'supercapacitors" so my result isn't conclusive. Also, my SMPS devices always run off a power conditioner that reconstructs a sine wave at tightly defined voltage (overkill but is the result of previously blowing a preamp), so 'mains' noise was never an issue for me (though I thought the whole point of the exercise was to remove noise created by the SMPS devices themselves).

Of course my sound system may not be sufficiently resolving (fairly likely) or my abused 50year old ears may not be up to the job (very likely). Anyway, while I'm always looking for the next item to buy, at this stage I'm leaning to the idea that SMPS devices have become adequately quiet for my purposes - indeed some websites claim to have recently tested off-the-shelf SMPS adaptors and found essentially zero noise.

Bottom line is I will look to upgrade my DAC or speakers before worrying about power supplies.

Might I just toss in that the Rune audio software is fantastic and I am so appreciative and in awe that the Rune team put together an image for the DigiPro so quickly.
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Re: Linear Power Supplies - any improvement in sound?

Postby bertie » 29 Aug 2017, 12:04

Four months later I would like to retract my previous 'null' result. I have since replaced my external dac (dacmagic plus) with a dac costing twice as much and then hooked the raspberry/Digi+Pro up again to a lithium battery pack as the power supply. Definite improvement, including a noticeable reduction in glare. Have since purchased a 25W linear power supply to preserve the improvement, without having to recharge every two days! Count me as a convert, with the caveat that one does actually need a 'half-decent' system for it to make any noticeable difference.
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Re: Linear Power Supplies - any improvement in sound?

Postby dirtylarry » 20 Dec 2017, 18:35

Im curious to what batteries can be used for clean power? Id like to pick one up for at work listening via headphones.
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Re: Linear Power Supplies - any improvement in sound?

Postby rastus » 11 Jan 2018, 12:44

dirtylarry wrote:Im curious to what batteries can be used for clean power? Id like to pick one up for at work listening via headphones.


Any battery... that supplies around 5v 2a...
You are invited to participate in my new forum, Rastus' Rants: http://rastus.tk
Subjects covered: Hardware setup for the Raspberry Pi as a digital streamer. Digital music, artists and thier albums or CDs. More will be added in the coming weeks.
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Re: Linear Power Supplies - any improvement in sound?

Postby rastus » 11 Jan 2018, 12:47

bertie wrote:Have since purchased a 25W linear power supply to preserve the improvement, without having to recharge every two days! Count me as a convert, with the caveat that one does actually need a 'half-decent' system for it to make any noticeable difference.


Yep, got myself a LPU that feeds my Raspberry Pi and my DSpeaker Anit-Mode 8033 sub eq at the same time.... works a charm, and my system would be deemed 'half-decent'.... sound awesome, to me.
You are invited to participate in my new forum, Rastus' Rants: http://rastus.tk
Subjects covered: Hardware setup for the Raspberry Pi as a digital streamer. Digital music, artists and thier albums or CDs. More will be added in the coming weeks.
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