Melco S-100 MK2 Audiophile Data Switch
Melco released the S100 Network Data Switch in the spring of 2019 at the Munich show and it has been an incredibly strong performer ever since, it has been a very popular model being installed into all manner of streaming based systems, not just Melco based ones either.
Streaming has finally come of age as a serious source but unfortunately networks are noisy places and by removing that noise you can have quite a dramatic impact of the performance of your music.
Fast forward to the 1st of December 2022 and Melco have announced the release of the S100 Mk2 which further enhances the performance over the original with a number of small improvements brought about by the release of the flagship switch, the 2 box S10.
The S100 mk2 has the same number of sockets as the mk1, but the sockets on the new model have been reallocated, there are now 6 x Gigabit ports and 2 x 100Mb ports, it retains the 2 SFP sockets of the original.
The 100Mb ports generally deliver the best audio performance, but in reality most people will only 1 or 2 items that require connecting to these sockets, whereas the Gigabit sockets are used more frequently for other items – if used in a living there could easily be a Smart TV, Sky Box, Games Consoles, a Roon Core, your router connection (unless you use Fibre) so this change around of sockets makes a lot of sense.
Digital Music relies on perfectly timed data in a low noise environment to achieve maximum performance.
The limitation to the ultimate sound quality of digital music on an Ethernet network is the network itself and the components used.
IT components are low cost commodity items and are effective for PC data and gaming etc. But they are simply inadequate for high quality digital music.
One critical component is all digital music systems is the dataswitch which handles both the music data and control.
The Melco S100 is designed and configured as an audiophile component without any IT compromises..
The S100 has been built from the ground up as a proper audio switch, not an off the shelf IT accessory the S100 puts priority on sound quality and data integrity, whereas IT put all the emphasis on speed and throughput. The S100 has 4 ports rated at 100MbE speeds (optimised for audio devices) and 4 ports rated at 1GbE for other devices, plus 2 Fibre Optic SFP ports the S100 will offer a dramatic upgrade in performance for those using Ethernet to move audio file around and it is not just for Melco owners, Linn, Naim, Lumin (the X1 uses Fibre Optic Ethernet) and general computer audio uses can benefit from what the S100 offers.