New Nordost QNET – Network Switch


Nordost writes: “Over the past two decades, the way in which people listen to music has evolved tremendously. Today, even the most discerning of audiophiles have embraced digital sources into their systems. However, in some cases, this adoption has moved faster than the technology, forcing users to integrate non-audio-grade components into highly specialized systems.” 

This is especially true with standard network switches, designed to be used with TVs or computers, which introduce noise, cross-contamination, and interference into your hifi system. 

Nordost’s QNET is different…

Compared to other audiophile network switches currently found on the market, which are typically standard switches with a simple upgrade to either the power supply or oscillators, the QNET is completely redesigned from the ground up. Every aspect of this product, from part to placement, was made to perfect the transmission and receival of high-speed audio signals, while achieving extremely low noise operation. 

Internally, the QNET uses a high speed, multi-layered, impedance-controlled layout, which optimizes signal routes, minimizing reflections, interference, and crosstalk. It also boasts an extremely low-noise, stable oscillator for the main clock of the device, which allows for minimal jitter and phase noise. It is equipped with six dedicated power supplies, which provide unencumbered current to all parts of the switch, while minimizing noise cross-contamination and ensuring clean, interference-free operation. 

Externally, the QNET is manufactured using an extremely durable aluminum housing. This housing not only acts as a heat sink and shield for the device, but also provides physical separation for the five, independent ports, each accommodating an 8P8C (RJ45) connector. The physical separation of each of these ports is a critical and unique design element, ensuring minimal crosstalk and interference within the device.

Each port on the QNET is optimized for its application. Three of the five ports are auto-negotiated 1000BASE-T (1 Gbps) capable, which should be used for the router and other generic network devices. The remaining two ports are fixed to 100BASE-TX (100 Mbps), a speed at which internal noise reduction is possible, making these ports best used for primary audio servers/players or external media sources. 

The QNET is provided with its own DC power supply. However, to achieve the best results, the QNET should be powered by Nordost’s QSOURCE Linear Power Supply and connected with Nordost’s award-winning Ethernet Cables. 

Whether you stream music and/or video from a local server, a NAS drive, or from the internet, upgrading your digitally-run system with Nordost’s QNET will make all the difference. This premium network switch will deliver enviable dynamic range, extension, and clarity to your system. As a result, the voices and instruments in your music will stand out against a surprisingly black background, giving you the fluid, life-like performance that you are looking for from your digital experience. 

  •  Audio optimized, Layer-2, five-port Ethernet switch
  •  Auto-negotiated and fixed Ethernet ports 
  •  Internal noise-reduction
  •  High speed internal layout 
  •  Low-noise, high precision oscillator
  •  Dimensions: 165mm D x 34.25mm H (6.5in D x 1.35in H)


  • Type: Layer 2 unmanaged switch
  • Number of ports: 5
  • Ports capability: Ports 1, 2, and 3 are 1000BASE-T/100BASE-TX capable with auto-negotiation and auto-MDI/MDI-X support. Ports 4 and 5 are 100BASE-TX full duplex only.
  • Connectors: 8P8C (RJ45)
  • DC Power Input: 9V/1.2A
  • Weight: 880g / 31oz
  • Dimensions: 165mm D x 34.25mm H (6.5in D x 1.35in H)