Stream to 272 via WiFi or Ethernet - which gives better SQ and/or less noise/signal transmission loss?

I just watched a video where John Darko (who he?) says he bought a streamer that recommends using WiFi in preference to Ethernet cable because the internal circuitry that processes the WiFi stream is less noisy than the noise or interference brought by an ethernet cable.

(I know the pragmatic solution in any person's case is just to test the two a go with the better sound.)

So 1. is it theoretically possible or likely that an ethernet cable could transmit more noise into a streamer than is created by WiFi circuitry (plus any possible loss from WiFi signal being lost in transmission)?

2. could this be true for a 272?


Original Post


i do this test some time ago.

Same router (Apple Airport Extreme), connect wired then wireless.

My conclusion ist ethernet sound better.

I know digital is 0/1 but i think it comes from buffering. Make a test for yourself.

Unplug ether, connect wireless, listen and back. My source was tidal and flac.

regards, ron



I think there will be many variables in your hardware and environment that might affect the outcome, so what works for John Darko might not be the same as what works for you. 

Naim streamers until the new models were released used 802.11n, or even g WiFi modules, years after the rest of the world considered them obsolete, and I sometimes wondered if this was because the older WiFi modules used less power, and were less noisy. At least, I can't think of any other reason why they would do this - surely it can't be a cost thing given Naim prices! It might be for similar reasons that they still use 100Mb Ethernet rather than Gigabit.

Would I use WiFi if I had a 272? Almost certainly not, but you can always give it a try. Just don't throw away that Ethernet cable too soon.

There's many things to consider. Wi-Fi drop-outs, adjacent properties using the same Wi-Fi channel causing interference. Possible drop out if your router changes channel because to many using the same channel, Wi-Fi can be more easily hacked than Ethernet. If you're living in cow country then maybe the above won't apply, in which case maybe Wi-Fi would be worth considering after a listen of course. Rich 

Wifi can only be easily hacked if you don’t use a proper authentication such as WPA2 on modern equipment... ironically it’s Ethernet that for most home networks that is the usually most insecure.. assuming access to an Ethernet port....

If using Wifi try and use Ethernet connected overlapping cooperating Wifi access points operating an ESSID.. you may be surprised if you are not used to good commercial setups how performant and effective properly setup Wifi can be.

Simon - I worked at BT Centre in London for 10 years (but I was not an engineer), and we had good WiFi there. Also, I now work at Lancaster University, which also has good IT.

I have a reliable 36 MB per second broadband speed at home from Plusnet - and can't tell the difference between WiFi and ethernet to the 272 in terms of SQ.



Hi S I S, I bow to your supperior knowledge in WiFi especially commercial. But issues abound in lax domestic setups. How often do most domestic users just turn on and forget without a thought to security or channel interference? OK, modern router's are supposed to channel hop if they detect interference from others on the same channel. We'll my EE mk 2 wireless router didn't. I was plagued with drop outs and other issues, not just with the hi-fi which magically have gone away since downloading a channel analyser that showed my router, that was set to channel hop, wasn't. There was strong signals from other router's on ch 11 that I shared but mine would not always automatically change and it always reverted back to 11 at some point. After a few days checking the analyser I found ch 2 was largely unoccupied so I manually set mine to that. 5g is better (for me) than 2.5g setting for mitigating interference but range was reduced so I tend to sacrifice interference for range as I have a large area, that includes an outdoor observatory that needs coverage and am reluctant to use range extenders. I may try a more sophisticated router such as a Draytek with hi gain antennas if I'm feeling flush, but I need to do more research first. Only my thoughts,  Rich 

In my system , no doubt   ......272 directly connected  via  cat 6 ethernet  beats  any wifi 

Nac 272 ----< TP link switch / linear psu ------>Nas  / linear  psu



                           Router   ( via cat 6 )



In my setup, 272PS + 250DR, wifi raises the noise floor, something easier to observe after 10PM. However, after investigating on how to further isolate the system from foreign noise, I've bought 2 optical converters and 1 linear supply, electrically decoupling the ethernet connection from the router to 272.

router ==> switch+linearPS ==> optic converter 1 ----> optic converter 2 + linear supply ==> 272

The benefits, to my ears, are non-existent.

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