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Thread: NAS Super-Low Noise Linear Power Supply

  1. #1
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 72,323
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

    Thumbs up NAS Super-Low Noise Linear Power Supply

    I'd been talking to Duncan (Tubehunter) about building me a dedicated linear PSU for my Seagate (5TB) NAS drives (suppling music files to the RPi), to replace the stock switch-mode units, which like all items of that nature, chuck a lot of noise into the mains.

    My thinking was that as well as reducing that pollution, which could have been having an adverse knock-on effect on my main system, ultimately receiving its power from the same mains supply, it may also improve the sonic performance of the RPi, so I bought all the necessary bits, gave them to Duncan, and this is what he came up with:



















    Total expenditure on parts: 165.00

    Links to main components...

    Power module for PSU: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/1218280144...%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

    Casing: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/1421515382...%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

    Transformer Toroidal 80VA 2x15V o/p: http://uk.rs-online.com/web/p/toroid...32333836373326

    FN9260 IEC950 2 fused inlet filter,4A: http://uk.rs-online.com/web/p/iec-fi...38383936323426

    Other sundry items sourced from Maplins.

    Could it be the best linear PSU out there, with which to power a NAS hard-drive? I think so... It should form a formidable partnership with the Paul Hynes SR3DR-05 linear PSU, powering the RPi. Can't wait to try it out!

    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

  2. #2
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 72,323
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

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    Duncan is also making me up a mains lead for the PSU, using this MS HD 13A plug, from Hi-fi Collective: https://www.hificollective.co.uk/pow...wer_ms328.html





    And a Yarbo pure-copper IEC plug, again from Hi-fi Collective: https://www.hificollective.co.uk/pow..._iec_plug.html





    Yes, I like my copper!

    The wire itself will simply be some good quality stuff Duncan had bought a while ago, on a reel, from RS. No serious skimping on any aspect of the design of this PSU. All are simply sensible choices, free from any 'foo'...

    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

  3. #3
    Join Date: Mar 2016

    Location: Barnet, london UK

    Posts: 291
    I'm Adam.

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    Looks good Marco although there is some debate to the effectiveness of a linear PSU on a NAS drive
    Any concrete findings on this?
    This is a route I was considering but was talked out of by an engineer twice !
    "lack of passion is fatal"
    LP12, Kore, Lingo2, Aro, SKale / DV XX2Mk2 / WAD 300b Power Modded, Mesh Plate Valves / David Coe AD Audio 'Satchmo' Pre & Phono / Hashimoto HM-7 SUT / AD Audio 'Little Gate' Jfet MC Cartridge Amp / Tannoy 12" MGs in Chatsworth size cabs / Speaker Cables: Duelund DCA16GA / Rpi3 & Digi + pro / SW1X Audio Design USB-SPdif / SW1X Audio Design DAC 1 Signature / Interconnects: Duelund DCA20GA home brew / SW1X Audio Phono SPDIF AERO 6 / David Coe AD Audio Silver USB / Synology NAS Drive / Tidal HiFi

  4. #4
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 72,323
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by WESTLOWER View Post
    Looks good Marco although there is some debate to the effectiveness of a linear PSU on a NAS drive
    Any concrete findings on this?

    This is a route I was considering but was talked out of by an engineer twice !
    Hi Adam,

    I'll let you know once it's installed, as the unit is currently at Duncan's, awaiting arrival of parts to make the mains lead. You're quite right in terms of the effectiveness issue, as objectively it appears to make little sense.

    My view is that even if it doesn't, it's just a cleaner way of powering the drives, as I absolutely detest the cheapo SMPS units, supplied with this kind of stuff - and it looks sexy!

    Forget what anyone else thinks, is my advice, and go with what your gut instincts say could work

    Full report to come!

    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

  5. #5
    Join Date: Jan 2013

    Location: Birmingham

    Posts: 3,102
    I'm James.

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    Never thought linear power supply would make an difference to NAS drive. I will go and investigate
    VPI Scout 1.1 / JMW 9T Tonearm / 2M Black /Croft 25R+ / Croft 7 / Spendor SP2

  6. #6
    Join Date: Mar 2016

    Location: Barnet, london UK

    Posts: 291
    I'm Adam.

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    Look forward to your impressions Marco
    I have to say, I am very tempted.
    I did the linear psu on the Rpi3
    I have heard arguments both ways regarding the NAS
    So it will be interesting.
    Your right it looks a darn sight nicer than the stock PSU!!
    "lack of passion is fatal"
    LP12, Kore, Lingo2, Aro, SKale / DV XX2Mk2 / WAD 300b Power Modded, Mesh Plate Valves / David Coe AD Audio 'Satchmo' Pre & Phono / Hashimoto HM-7 SUT / AD Audio 'Little Gate' Jfet MC Cartridge Amp / Tannoy 12" MGs in Chatsworth size cabs / Speaker Cables: Duelund DCA16GA / Rpi3 & Digi + pro / SW1X Audio Design USB-SPdif / SW1X Audio Design DAC 1 Signature / Interconnects: Duelund DCA20GA home brew / SW1X Audio Phono SPDIF AERO 6 / David Coe AD Audio Silver USB / Synology NAS Drive / Tidal HiFi

  7. #7
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 72,323
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    Never thought linear power supply would make an difference to NAS drive. I will go and investigate
    I don't know if it does yet, Jim! I guess we'll soon find out...

    I'm just very anti having multiple (noisy) wall wart SMPS units pumping crap into my mains supply, which could be having an adverse effect on any other kit sharing the same supply, so any sonic improvements heard may result from that, rather than anything else. A little 'thinking outside of the box', as it were....

    Furthermore, as you know, I'm very big on maxing out how equipment receives its power from the mains supply, so this little project reflects my 'completist nature', in that respect

    Plus, I'm thoroughly of the opinion that what fundamentally impedes the sonic performance of music streaming systems, is the inherently noisy nature of their design, as computers (which essentially these things represent) are fundamentally noisy things!

    So the thinking is to minimise the negative sonic influences of having a computer in the music reproduction chain, as much as possible.

    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

  8. #8
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 72,323
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by WESTLOWER View Post
    Look forward to your impressions Marco
    I have to say, I am very tempted.
    I did the linear psu on the Rpi3
    I have heard arguments both ways regarding the NAS
    So it will be interesting.
    Your right it looks a darn sight nicer than the stock PSU!!
    I doubt it'll have the same dramatic sonic effect as fitting a linear PSU to the Pi itself, but you never know! Plus, like you say, the new unit looks a damn sight nicer, and befitting of being part of a high-end music streamer (at least in terms of performance, if not price)

    The plan is also to have some nice wooden wall shelves installed downstairs, in what will become my music streaming 'NAS station', so the Seagate drives, PSU and router will all sit together and look nice and tidy, streaming music wirelessly to the RPi in the lounge next door (and also to my main system upstairs).

    Happy days!

    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

  9. #9
    Join Date: Jan 2013

    Location: Birmingham

    Posts: 3,102
    I'm James.

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    Were you using a wall wart before? Anything that can improve noisy mains rubbish getting into your system must be worth it and I presume NAS drives are susceptible to this. Computer audio as I have witnessed does seem to benefit from clean power supply and very good cabling. I have heard the difference between say bog standard cat4 or 5 and cat7. I know that some of the very top DAC manufactures are now paying great attention to their power supplies and going to great lengths to improve RFI suppression/ interference.
    VPI Scout 1.1 / JMW 9T Tonearm / 2M Black /Croft 25R+ / Croft 7 / Spendor SP2

  10. #10
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 72,323
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    Were you using a wall wart before?
    Yes, as that's what comes with the Seagate units as standard, and indeed I presume with any other commercially available NAS drives.

    Anything that can improve noisy mains rubbish getting into your system must be worth it and I presume NAS drives are susceptible to this.
    Indeed, which is why I'm doing it.

    Computer audio as I have witnessed does seem to benefit from clean power supply and very good cabling. I have heard the difference between say bog standard cat4 or 5 and cat7.
    I agree, and experience gained from experimenting in that area bears that out. However, although I heard subtle sonic improvements going from cat4 to cat6a, the difference wasn't dramatic. For me, the dramatic differences come from improving PSU arrangements.

    I know that some of the very top DAC manufactures are now paying great attention to their power supplies and going to great lengths to improve RFI suppression/ interference.
    It's fundamentally important, and I discovered the benefits of doing it many years ago, when modifying and upgrading my Sony DAC.

    However, this is about steaming systems/music servers, where I believe the same thinking applies - and the exercise here is to take an RPi set-up (with its main linear PSU) into the veritable high-end, by having it fed by ultra-low noise power, throughout the mains supply chain, and turn it into even more of a giant killer...

    I was largely responsible for introducing AoS members to the joys of the RPi, and high-quality music streaming on the cheap, so this new PSU is simply part of that, and furthering the 'SPPV' approach to audio, which we continually champion here on AoS

    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

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