Home  |  Hi-Fi Audio Reviews  Audiophile Shows Partner Mags  News       

 

 

 

November 2022

Enjoy the Music.com Review Magazine

Silent Angel Bonn N8 Data Switch Review
The Silent Angel Bonn N8 already has an audiophile following, but Martin Colloms says adding the Forester F1 power supply further levitates its performance.
Review By Martin Colloms

 

Silent Angel Bonn N8 Data Switch Review

 

  Thunder Data, the primary company responsible for the Silent Angel products was founded by two Chinese research engineers Dr. Huang Jian and Chorus Chuang specializing in both hardware and software development and engineering, and they have several patents in this field. Features of the already highly-regarded Bonn N8 eight-port Ethernet switch, which sells for 399, include fully balanced input and output transformers for every port, though it must be said that pretty much all such network connections are done this way even on low-cost Netgear switches.

Further additions include damping pads on many internal components to reduce induced jitter from audio-related vibration, and the use of a low-noise high-stability reference clock to upgrade it to an audio-quality computer network switch. The eight ports are 100/1000Base-T gigabit specification, and the design includes a customized 'Silent Angel Noise Absorber' with two EMC filters for the main internal power supply and a further two for the clock generator circuit. The included switched-mode power supply is specified as medical-grade for lower noise and leakage current.

 

 

As an upgrade Silent Angel offers an external power supply, the 429 Forester F1 linear, with two independent and separately regulated 5V/2A USB outputs, with additional connections via a standard 5.5mm coaxial DC plug. There's a vibration-damped metal housing, a low-noise encapsulated toroidal mains transformer and balanced output circuitry using low-noise MOSFET regulators. Adding this takes the package price up to 799.

 

 

The switch itself has a box of thin painted metal with quite sharp edges: in contrast the transformer power supply is nicely made and weighty thanks to the generous power transformer and a sturdy case. However, I would have liked a longer DC output cable to allow the supply to be located further from the switch the N8's standard switch-mode plug-top supply has a usefully extended cable, and thus may be remote from the network switch itself.

 

 

Sound Quality
When the package arrived, it came in a set of immaculate jet-black boxes of near Apple quality impressive! Was the elevated unboxing experience a taste of what was to come? Well, first impressions with the plug-top electronic supply were promising, the Silent Angel showing a relaxed sweet sound, spacious and with indications of low jitter levels in a marked absence of grain or harshness. This was some improvement over an off-the-shelf generic network switch such as a Netgear GS308 at 25 odd from Amazon or eBay, though the N8 is rather lightweight, and the Ethernet cables need careful dressing if they're not to drag this upgrade switch off the support shelf.

 

 

The N8 seems a tad costly for the benefit on offer, but substituting the much heavier Forester F1 linear power supply delivered a significant uplift in clarity. I heard more weight and power in the bass and in addition several qualities deriving from lower electronic noise such as better transparency, sharper image focus and some gain in image depth. Despite the shortness of the F1's DC supply lead, which might result in possible interaction with hum fields and transformer vibration, there was nonetheless an improvement, but again I felt it would be worth finding a longer cable.

 

 

Comparing the N8/F1 combination with my old stock, refurbished Cisco 2960 Catalyst switch, the gains were similar over an unmodified generic switch. Oddly, I found that the Catalyst itself is significantly improved with the addition of isolating feet and a NAIM Powerline mains cable but at substantial extra cost. With an ordinary mains cable on the Cisco Catalyst the difference between the two switches was somewhat smaller.

 

 

 

 

Subscribe To HIFICRITIC!


Click here to subscribe to HIFICRITIC

 

 

 

Manufacturer
Silent Angel
Website: Silent-Angel-Audio.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

     
 

Quick Links


Premium Audio Review Magazine
High-End Audio Equipment Reviews

 

Equipment Review Archives
Turntables, Cartridges, Etc
Digital Source
Do It Yourself (DIY)
Preamplifiers
Amplifiers
Cables, Wires, Etc
Loudspeakers/ Monitors
Headphones, IEMs, Tweaks, Etc
Superior Audio Gear Reviews

 

Videos
Our Featured Videos

 


Show Reports
Montreal Audiofest 2024 Report

Southwest Audio Fest 2024
Florida Intl. Audio Expo 2024
Capital Audiofest 2023 Report
Toronto Audiofest 2023 Report
UK Audio Show 2023 Report
Pacific Audio Fest 2023 Report
T.H.E. Show 2023 Report
HIGH END Munich 2023
Australian Hi-Fi Show 2023 Report
AXPONA 2023 Show Report
...More Show Reports

 

Other
Cool Free Stuff For You
Tweaks For Your System
Vinyl Logos For LP Lovers
Lust Pages Visual Beauty

 

 


Industry & Music News

High-End Premium Audio & Music News

 

Partner Print Magazines
audioXpress
Australian Hi-Fi Magazine
hi-fi+ Magazine
Sound Practices
VALVE Magazine

 

For The Press & Industry
About Us
Press Releases
Official Site Graphics

 

 

 

     

Home   |   Hi-Fi Audio Reviews   |   News   |   Press Releases   |   About Us   |   Contact Us

 

All contents copyright  1995 - 2024  Enjoy the Music.com
May not be copied or reproduced without permission.  All rights reserved.