UpTone Audio ISO Regen Listening Impressions

Discussion in 'Computer Audio' started by winders, May 22, 2017.
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  1. amirm
    Alex is incorrect and he has accepted the same as a result of my measurements. Here is LPS-1 output with its included switchmode supply:


    This measurement (in red) shows that using LPS-1 adds substantial amount of AC mains leakage into your audios system. This is because the mains leakage through its switchmode supply is "common mode" and bleeds right through the DC power of the LPS-1.

    I then powered LPS-1 using my linear lab power supply and naturally, that mains leakage stopped.

    Importantly that only gets you back to square one. That is, using LPS-1 with your DAC actually degrades performance of the DAC. If you use a linear power supply, then it does no harm. But it does no good either.

    This same message exists for ISO Regen. Addition of yet another power supply and a switchmode one at that when using these devices is a bad idea. Simple measurements like I performed were not done to see the problem prior to release, in some sense believing their own marketing material that they give to their consumers (i.e. impression of isolation). Note that the output switches on LPS-1 also have some leakage so other types of noise can also bleed through it.

    Note that the mains leakage is not an audible problem so my data does not back people saying linear supply with LPS-1 sounds better. The analog output of the DAC does not change with or without LPS-1. Only imagination of the person does. :)

    Save your money and if you are dying to spend it, buy a higher-end DAC. These tweaks unfortunately do not work.
  2. amirm
    Please forgive me for correcting you here :), but you do not at all have floating ground with LPS-1 and its switchmode supply. There are many things called "ground" in electronics. If you mean you don't have an AC mains ground, that is just a safety thing and at any rate, your neutral wire in your breaker panel is connected to the ground wire.

    The main ground that causes problems in audio is the outside shield of RCA/unbalanced audio connection. Voltage drop across it causes a differential that allows mains current grounds to flow. Nothing is floating there unless you switch to balanced connection. microRendu does nothing to fix this.

    And as I showed in my previous post (and there are tons more), no isolation or floating is provided by any of these devices. If anything they bring in another source of power/AC mains leakage due to their need to have a power supply.

    In nearly two years of testing of these devices I have yet to find them in any way or fashion changing the analog output of any DAC for the better with the exception of Schiit Modi which is horribly designed. All other DACs regardless of price, don't care about power because they have their own post regulators to clean up external power.

    Here is some data to back this in the case of microRendu:


    Here I am using an aftermarket iFi power supply which is sold as an option for microRendu. As you see, it adds a ton of garbage to the output of the DAC that was not there without microRendu.

    If again I use my linear lab supply, we simply get back to where we started:


    Clearly nothing was isolated when the microRendu was used with switchmode supply or we would have have had all that noise that was eliminated with my lab supply that is mains grounded.

    You can of course believe in your subjective impressions but they cannot be connected to any electronics means.

  3. auricgoldfinger
    Life in an ivory tower must be wonderful.
  4. TheAttorney
    Measurements are good at many levels, including when they give insight as to why we hear what we hear.
    But measurements are no good if they lead to the wrong conclusion - I'm not saying whether your measurements are good or not, but I am saying that your conclusion above is spectacularly wrong.

    I could try to explain further, but I won't because nothing will help. Based on your post count (and contents, and other posts I've come across elsewhere), you appear to have joined head-fi specifically in order to discredit companies and peddle an agenda. I call that trolling. Maybe your intentions are good and maybe your crusade to save audiophools from themselves is a worthy one. But I didn't ask to be saved, and I find it irritating to be presented with so much seemly worthy technical information that ends up with totally the wrong conclusion. All IMO of course.
    auricgoldfinger likes this.
  5. sahmen
  6. amirm
    Well, if you don't know measurements are good or not,then you have nothing to contribute to the question that was posed which I responded to:
    See, he is asking specifically about scientific explanation. While my measurements are engineering in nature, I am assuming it suffices the same. That the LPS-1 does not do the isolation owners and at the time its creators thought it provided.

    Those measurements have caused John to rethink the whole issue and he has gone to actually try to understand the problem. See this thread: https://www.computeraudiophile.com/forums/topic/37034-smps-and-grounding/

    This is the outcome I like to see. That when measurements design flaws, the manufacturers work to remedy them. Jumping up and down saying the measurements must be wrong, acting as the PR person for the company etc. is all non-constructive. The data is that data. It conclusively shows that LPS-1's switchmode power supply mains leakage due to use of its Y caps bleeds right through the LPS-1. There is no idealized isolation here as folks imagine. Had Uptone tested its products prior to release and understood these issues in advance, we would not be facing such data.

    Well, you should explain more because I am interested to know what you think is wrong with the data. Everything else you say to throw sand in the air is off-topic, personal bickering, and does nothing to add to the topic that can help answer the question that was asked. Alex does a wonderful job on the forums defending his company seeing the strong sales of his products through these channels. He is of no need of further assistance from members this way.

    That aside, I apologize for my statement that made you think I was trying to save you. Just go by the rest of what I post.
    monsieurfromag3 and UELong like this.
  7. TheAttorney
    Hi Amir, I wasn't complaining about your data, or the fact that you did directly respond to the original question. Good so far.
    And it's great if your data can help manufacturers improve their products. Still good so far.

    My complaint was specifically about your conclusion that I quoted, which was utterly wrong IMO and in the opinion of others whose opinion I value.
    You presented "scientific" proof to state that these products do not work. But they do work - very well indeed, which is not to say that they can't also be improved further.

    I could start a discussion about why your data does not explain why the products in question do actually sound good, but my past experince in the Sound Science forum tells me this will get us nowhere.
    I could also start a discussion about why your hearing seems to differ so much from mine and others, but the same downward spirals will ensue.
    motberg and auricgoldfinger like this.
  8. amirm
    Hi there. By all means, start such a thread and I will participate. The key thing to remember that forum discussions is not between two people but in front of countless others. As such, you can't measure it with respect to what I may or may not do with what you have to say. The key is to make sure the thread has information has value beyond what you want to personally tell me.

    I have plenty of meat I can offer on the above topics with the above in mind. Like you I won't be having expectations to change your mind. But rather, share what people may not know and as such, will hopefully be valuable.

    For now, keep in mind that I spent a decade fighting objectivists in audio in defense of subjectivists. So don't assume you know me without also know that. You know, some things we know. Some things we know we don't. And what we know, we know. :D
  9. TheAttorney
    I agree with all of your your last post Amir - in fact I was only thinking of the wider readership that compelled me to call out the blatant misinformation of the quoted conclusion - IMO of course :).
    I otherwise wouldn't have bothered. I won't start any new threads because life is too short, so this wil be my last word on this sub-topic.
  10. auricgoldfinger
    +1 in regard to blatant misinformation. :)
  11. hattrick15
    I'm looking at buying either the ISO REGEN or the SOtm tX-USBultra regenerator to help clean up my USB connection.

    Do these two devices do essentially the same thing?

    If anyone has listened to both before, can you share what each did for your sound?
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2017
  12. Superdad
    Functionally they are both USB hubs with attention paid to clocking, power supply, and signal integrity. The ISO REGEN also includes try galvanic isolation from the computer--which the more than 3x the price tx-USBultra does not. The ISO REGEN is purposely very small (but packed with costly parts on both sides of the board) so that it be placed right at the input of your DAC to preserve be signal integrity/impedance match. To that end, we also include our unique USPCB A>B Adapter (a 4-layer, stripling-impedance controlled circuit board which many are hailing as beating their best USB cables)--so not additional USB cable is needed.

    An in-depth review that somewhat directly compares the SOtM device to ISO REGEN can be found here:

    Happy holidays to all and many thanks for making 2017 a banner year for UpTone!

    --Alex C.
    UELong likes this.
  13. UELong
    Rewriting and editing: Nice review! And he did the review with the DAVE, and noticed the improvements. Rob states that upstream improvements are unnecessary, but the review disclaims that.
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2017
  14. hattrick15
    Thanks Alex for the information and the article. Happy Holidays!
  15. Superdad
    Hmm... Then I guess we should not have wasted all that money and time developing and measuring to build a device that actually isolates the DAC from the computer--because Rob says so. :thinking:
    Oh wait, there are over 1,000 other ISO REGEN owners who can and have compared for themselves what the galvanic isolation adds to our über-REGEN (enhanced in a half dozen ways over the original)--since there is a switch on it that allows one to defeat the isolator.
    UELong likes this.
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