New English Electric 16switch doubles the capability of the multi-award-winning 8Switch
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English Electric (a Chord Company brand) has launched the 16Switch data switch, building on the multi-award-winning 8Switch, the British company’s debut product which was launched in May 2020.

The 16Switch is a two-zone, dual power supply, 16-port Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) device which has been optimised for music and video streaming. The 16Switch brings the proven benefits

of the 8Switch to larger networks and features 2x independent rows of eight high-quality Gigabit Ethernet ports, which can be used as two independent eight-way switches or connected and used as one 16-way device.

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The 16Switch has been designed to offer high noise-isolation and low electrical noise. It uses two highly accurate customised TCXOs (Temperature Compensation Crystal Oscillators) with an accuracy of 0.1ppm (far higher than normal crystals and higher than a normal TCXO), allowing the 16Switch to generate higher-accuracy network signals, which in turn, help provide more stable data transmission.

The clock source is isolated for each network zone, allowing the TCXO modules to remove power-related noise from the switch circuit. Power is delivered by two independent isolated power supplies feeding each of the eight-port switch modules; the clean supply allows better network signal quality, ultimately driven by the highly accurate TCXO clock technology. When run as two independent power zones, it allows the performance-critical audio/video equipment to be run independently from the more noisy digital equipment also present on the network.

The combined technologies and attention to detail in the 16Switch result in more stable and accurate network signals and clock circuitry, delivering significantly improved data transmission with measurably reduced jitter errors.

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The 16Switch benefits from a high-quality 1U mild steel enclosure which offers protection from both acoustic and electrical noise. It is highly flexible and can be sited on any solid surface using the (optional) resonance-damping feet, to help decouple the device from unwanted mechanical vibration.

The 16Switch is also supplied with rack-mount brackets and bolts to allow mounting in a 19-inch rack (1U height). When rack-mounted, the case has both front and rear rack-mounting locations, allowing the sockets to be either forward- or rear-facing in the installation.

The discreet front-panel LED display includes power, alarm, link status and link speed for the 16 ports; the 100/1000 Base-T Gigabit Ethernet ports are suitable for all home network appliances.

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16Switch advanced power supply

With data switches requiring high-speed power supplies, the use of linear power devices is negated, due to speed limitations. The 16Switch stays with this philosophy and each zone is powered by its own high-quality low-noise power supply. These advanced A/V-grade power supplies permit an optimum-quality network signal, with each zone being driven by high-accuracy clock technology which has been designed to reduce electrical noise from AC sources, and significantly reduce mains quality issues from affecting network signals. The 16Switch also boasts high power efficiency, a no-load power consumption of < 0.075 W, plus protection from short circuit, overload and over-voltages for each zone.

Doug Maxwell, English Electric’s Sales Director said, “With the 16Switch, we think we may be able to surprise even the most hardened digital sceptic. In our first listening stages, we were so taken aback by what we heard, that we had to launch this incredible product alongside the 8Switch.

“Listening to streamed music is not just about measurements and numbers, finding an upgrade that improves the experience can be something really special. The improved network signal quality delivers, we think, significant benefits in music and video playback, whether streamed or via NAS drives. The 16x 100/1000 Base-T Gigabit Ethernet ports make it possible to connect even the most demanding set-ups.”

Each 16Switch is also supplied with a free Chord Company C-Stream digital streaming cable (0.75m) worth £40.

Price and availability

The English Electric 16Switch is available now priced at £1,000