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U-Audio Review About our NEW: LAN and USB InLine Gold Isolators

We are delighted to announce that the esteemed U-Audio magazine has recently conducted a thorough review of our latest product, the LAN InLine Gold Isolator. It is gratifying to note that their findings echo our own satisfaction as well as the positive feedback received from numerous users. In their latest review, U-Audio highlights specific features and performances of our product. We encourage you to gain an overview of their detailed insights and evaluations by checking out the translated full review.

Original Review in Chinese

This time, we received two interesting products from Stein Music. One is a LAN InLine Gold Isolator network filter, and the other is a USB InLine Gold Isolator USB filter. One look at the names of these two products and you can tell what they are for. The former is connected from the router to the streaming player, while the latter is connected from the streaming player to the DAC (or between the computer and the DAC if you are playing from a computer source).

I’ve used a lot of Stein Music products, speakers and cables notwithstanding, but also a lot of tuning products such as pads, magnetizers, tuners, etc. There are a lot of things that I don’t fully understand, but every time, my experience has been that “it works”. Harmonizers are the most amazing products, and the magnetizers are plugless and very effective. Is it the same with these two isolators? Out of curiosity, I raised my hand to recognize them during the editorial meeting.

With Stein’s own InLine patented jamming technology.

Stein Music’s two InLine Isolator filters are designed to be different from similar products on the market. Network filters and USB filters have been around for a long time, but now it’s more popular to add a time-base reordering function to the filters, not only to isolate noise, but also to reorder the time base and reduce jitter.

Stein Music’s approach is to add their own touch to the traditional method. Whether it’s a LAN InLine Gold Isolator network filter or a USB InLine Gold Isolator USB filter, the basic design is the same: noise is eliminated by the built-in filter line, and their InLine patented “scrambler” technology provides long-lasting demagnetization to reduce magnetic interference on the line.

The difference is that the filter line in the USB filter is mainly to improve the high frequency and ground potential drop noise, while the filter line in the LAN filter is used to eliminate EMI/RFI noise. In addition, the USB filter housing is made of polymer, while the LAN filter housing is made of maple wood with Stein Music’s own Maestro tuning varnish for vibration control.

It is an extension of the InLine’s interference technology.

Stein Music has previously introduced the InLine Speaker and the InLine RCA and InLine XLR terminals. The InLine Speaker Signature connects between the speaker and the speaker cable and acts as an EMF field blocker, eliminating the weak electric field created by the conductor as electricity flows through it, and preventing it from interfering with the signal. This prevents the weak electric field from interfering with the signal and causing distortion. As for the InLine RCA and InLine XLR, which look like signal line terminals, the principle is the same, except that they are used at the amplifier end, so that the incoming signal from the source can be free from field effect interference. Now the LAN InLine Gold Isolator network filter and the USB InLine Gold Isolator USB filter also incorporate InLine’s interfering technology, but they also have a filter circuit, which is different from the previous InLine family products.

LAN InLine Gold Isolator: Eliminating frizz and improving musicality

How does it work? Let’s start with the LAN InLine Gold Isolator. When the network cable comes straight out of the router and is connected to a streaming player, the sound is a bit muddy and scattered, the low frequencies are not clear, and the sound is a bit fidgety. With the LAN InLine Gold Isolator, the fidgety sound is significantly reduced, and the line is not only smoother, but also clearer. The low end is more defined, and the reproduction of details is more certain.

Taking “Rey’s Theme” from Anne-Sophie Mutter’s “Acorss the Stars” album as an example, the violin’s sound is clearer and more cohesive. When connected directly to the router, the sound was a bit fuzzy, but after connecting the LAN InLine Gold Isolator, the fuzzy edges were immediately reduced. When the bass strings were coming out, a mass of bass floated up flexibly, whereas if it was coming out directly from the router, the bass strings were obviously loose. The chimes sounded more cohesive, and the notes had more clarity; in contrast, without the LAN InLine Gold Isolator, the chimes sounded hollow, less percussive, and less grainy. In the middle and latter parts of the piece, the solo violin intensifies its strength, and it interprets the resolute character of the protagonist, Rey. With the addition of the LAN InLine Gold Isolator, the boldness of the tone remains, but the sharpness and excitement are reduced, giving the instrument a more mellow and smooth texture. Overall, the LAN InLine Gold Isolator has brought about a significant improvement in musicality.

USB InLine Gold Isolator: A more cohesive sound with the solidity of a pyramid.

The USB InLine Gold Isolator USB filter has an even more pronounced effect, as soon as you connect it, the USB InLine Gold Isolator will make the sound more rounded, more cohesive, and even feel a bit fuller and stronger. Many old-timers have taught their students that a good sounding stereo should have a pyramid-shaped sound, and the USB InLine Gold Isolator does just that, making the low end more pronounced and the bottom end of the music more solid. It makes the low end more pronounced and the bottom end of the music more solid. When you add it to your music, it gives it a downward, crouching, stance.

Take Regine Crespin’s aria “Love is a free bird” from Bizet’s “Carmen” as an example. With the USB InLine Gold Isolator, the aria’s powerful opening orchestra sounded more composed and powerful, while without it, the soundstage was more open and the sound was more outward, but because it was more “open”, the tension was a bit looser. Crespin’s vocals were more cohesive with the USB InLine Gold Isolator. I’ve had similar experiences with many of Stein Music’s tuning products, and Stein Music seems to have a kind of fetishistic belief in the idea of “removing the essentials”. They allow you to hear more of the “protagonists”, not necessarily eliminating them, but allowing you to ignore some of the “lesser people”. Listening to Crespin’s vibrato, it’s beautiful. I don’t think her Carmen is the best choice, but her mastery of the weak notes and vibrato is unique, and the USB InLine Gold Isolator makes me realize even more clearly what Crespin does so well.

Background, black!

Playing Miles Davis’ “So What”, Paul Chambers’ bass at the beginning, with the USB InLine Gold Isolator, the bass sound was more rounded and grainy, compared to the unfiltered bass, which was a bit flabby, and Bill Evans’ piano, which had a better grainy sound and was mellow and warm. Miles’ trumpet had a cohesive, solid sound that was even more flavorful, and the USB InLine Gold Isolator tightened up the sound without thinning it out, but kept it full and rich, giving it a real sense of realism. The saxophones that followed were also cohesive, with a good sense of shape and body, and the sounding body was clear. The metal walls blended with the vibration of the reeds, warm, rounded, and colorful; John Coltrane’s tenor sax sounded rough, while the Cannonball Adderly’s alto sax sounded elegant, and the USB InLine Gold Isolator seemed to amplify the instrument’s raw texture, allowing you to hear it more clearly. The USB InLine Gold Isolator seems to amplify the raw texture of the instrument, allowing you to hear it more clearly. Moreover, the USB InLine Gold Isolator brings a darker background to this simple quintet, allowing each instrument to be clearly presented, more embossed, more three-dimensional, more tangible.

The soundstage is slightly withdrawn, so we recommend repositioning the speakers.

Finally, I’d like to add that Stein Music’s two InLine Isolators bring a slight sonic change, only slightly in the LAN InLine Gold Isolator, but noticeably in the USB InLine Gold Isolator, in that the soundstage will be more focused, and the width of the soundstage will be a little bit more inward. So if you don’t like the inward soundstage, but you like the darker background, bumpier sound, and cohesive yet smooth sound of the InLine Isolator, you’ll have to go through the trouble of re-tuning your speakers. If you want to get the best of both worlds, you’ll have to pay for it.

A Philosophy of Sound

Stein Music’s products do not strive for acoustic excellence, but rather for the spirit of the music. This is true for every product I have used. In the process of contacting these products, I can gradually find out the sound philosophy of Holger Stein, the founder of Stein Music, or should I say, the philosophy of music. It is a relaxed, comfortable, open and natural sound. That’s how I heard him tweak his system at the Munich Sound Fair, and that’s how I’ve been inspired and guided by the products I’ve been trying out. Maybe not everyone agrees with this philosophy, but there are always people who do. Are you one of them?