M12 Switch IE Gold: Enhance Sound Quality with Industrial Connectors

Using Industrial-grade Connectors

M12 is an industrial-grade circular connector with a plug that can be screwed into a socket. As both the connector and the connecting parts are made of metal, once secured, it is almost impossible for it to become loose or be pulled out. M12 connectors are also capable of achieving certain levels of waterproofing, making them suitable for use in harsh industrial environments. M12 refers to the outer diameter size of the connector. As for the internal contacts, there are many types, from 2 pin to 12 pin, which can transmit power and are very versatile.

Telegärtner, a well-known manufacturer of professional connectors, produces a wide range of M12 connectors. This includes the STX M12x1 IP67 series which meets the requirements for 10 GbE Ethernet transmission, and is used in the design of the M12 Gold switch.

Industrial-grade Connectors

The M12 Gold switch is manufactured by Telegärtner’s Japanese subsidiary, the audio division of Telegärtner, which has improved their existing industrial-grade products to introduce products that meet the requirements of Hi-End audio playback. But how do you connect the M12 Gold switches, you may ask, when they use M12 connectors and home networking equipment usually uses RJ45?

In fact, each M12 Gold comes with two dedicated MFP8 IE Gold network cables. One end is an M12 plug that connects to the M12 Gold switch, and the other end is the recognized best RJ45 plug that connects to your home network devices, such as wireless routers, streaming players, music servers, etc., so you don’t need to worry about not being able to use it at all.

MFP8 IE gold RJ45

Starting from Shock Absorption and Shielding

The M12 Gold’s casing is an extremely sturdy metal box with a considerable thickness. Its top and bottom covers are precisely sealed, preventing the body from resonating and reducing vibration interference to the minimum, thereby avoiding any adverse impact on data signals. Essentially, the M12 Gold meets the IP67 and EN50155 certifications.

  • The M12 Gold’s IP67 certification makes it extremely resistant to dust and water and can withstand immersion in water up to one meter deep without any harm.
  • The EN50155 certification is for railroad use, indicating that the M12 Gold is capable of operating in the extremely harsh environment of trains.

It can withstand sustained impacts and vibrations, with an allowable temperature range from -40℃ to 70℃. Of course, we would not expect such vibration and temperature differences at home. Nonetheless, this certification represents the high-quality components used inside the M12 Gold, proving that it is durable and long-lasting.

The M12 Gold Jack and Its Physical Characteristics

M12 Gold Jack

There are a total of 7 sockets on the panel of the M12 Gold.

  • Among them, there are 5 network ports that can connect up to five devices.
  • One is an indicator socket, used to notify any abnormal conditions, but this function may only be necessary on trains.
  • There is also a power input socket, which follows a 4-pin specification and connects to the accompanying DC power supply.

What’s remarkable is that the input voltage range that M12 Gold allows is quite extensive, ranging from 10V to 60V, with a maximum power consumption of only 6 watts. If you want to upgrade the power supply for M12 Gold, you have plenty of options. All of the aforementioned seven sockets follow the M12 specification, meaning that each socket is entered through a circular metal plug that must be locked in place. This ensures not only stability, preventing any slight vibrations, but also shields outside noise. In fact, the circular metal plug provides better shielding than even the MFP8 RJ45 plug, fully isolating any external interference and avoiding disruption.

Telegärtner M12

All currently available audio-grade network switches utilize various circuit techniques to enhance transmission quality, such as filtering circuits, power supply noise reduction, improved power supplies, and higher precision clocks. In contrast, M12 Switch IE Gold appears to place less emphasis on these techniques and instead directs its attention toward physical features including mechanical construction, vibration suppression, and shielding isolation.

M12 plug

Improving Sound Quality at Its Core

Vibration and noise are two of the main factors affecting the sound performance of the audio. The RJ45 plug’s noise shielding capability is not very effective. When the RJ45 plug is inserted into the switch, it doesn’t securely lock and can easily become loose. When the RJ45 plug is moved by hand, it can be seen that it shakes. Even with high-quality plugs like Telegärtner MFP8 series, the RJ45 connector can still shake when inserted.

As such, when the music is played, sound waves propagate in the room, inherently causing slight vibrations in the network cables. These vibrations then transmit through the RJ45 plug, causing the eight internal contact points to vibrate in unison and inevitably affect the sound quality. The M12 plug not only has a lockable housing, but also a plug-like structure inside, which tightly fits into the socket like an XLR plug, reducing vibrations to the lowest possible level.

M12 IE

In addition, M12 Ethernet plugs have the advantage that the internal pins are arranged in a ring pattern, closer to the original four-pair twisted structure of the network cable. Not only is it easier to install, but the length and structure of the conductors are not changed after installation. Therefore, it does not affect the impedance and function of magnetic field offset. However, RJ45 plug in the production of eight wires must be flattened into a row or two (depending on plug form). This changes the structure of the wire is larger, and the impact will be greater.

Bringing about Significant Positive Improvement

Compared to other similar network switches, it appears that M12 Gold does not make any special processing on the network transmission path. However, its positive performance improvement is not inferior to other devices. M12 Gold is prepared with adapters for the network line, eliminating the need for users to worry about selecting the appropriate line. Moreover, its industrial-grade quality ensures reliable and worry-free use. If you have more needs to know about this product, please feel free to contact us at Renhotec.

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