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ARX RS-1 XLR AB Switcher Review

amirm

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#1
This is a review and detailed measurements of the ARX RS-1 Remote Switcher. Strangely the back says "Remote SwitcherAB-19" so not sure what is the right model number. It was kindly purchased and drop shipped to me by a member. The RS-1 costs US $273. The website says "HANDMADE IN MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA."

This is an industrial looking piece which hints at their traditional market:

ARX RS-1 Remote Switcher Channel B Audio Review.jpg


It is nice that by default Channel A is active so if there is a power loss, etc., you can count on that input being live. To switch to Channel B, you must supply power for the internal relay. There are two methods: that power input and then shorting the two left terminals. I tried that but it did not switch. I had to string together different connectors so maybe that was the issue. The alternate method of just feeding 12 volts to the right two terminals worked. Note that it drew about 40 milliamps so make sure your source can supply this much current. Otherwise you have to put yet another relay in front of this one to trigger an external power source.

Switcher Audio Measurements
Our goal here is transparency so let's feed the unit 4 volts balanced and see what the input to output loss is:

ARX RS-1 Remote Switcher Channel B Audio Measurements.png


This is exceptional response so if there is a loss, it is incredibly small.

Signal to noise ratio is superb as well:

ARX RS-1 Remote Switcher Channel B SNR Audio Measurements.png


As is crosstalk:

ARX RS-1 Remote Switcher Channel B Crosstalk Audio Measurements.png


We are basically measuring the analyzer performance itself.

Frequency response just the same is ruler flat:

ARX RS-1 Remote Switcher Channel B Frequency Response Audio Measurements.png


To detect how much crosstalk there is between the two inputs, I fed the unselected one 4/12 volts and measured how much it bled into the output:

ARX RS-1 Remote Switcher Channel A to B Bleed Audio Measurements.png


The heading is a bit wrong. The bleeding is from unselected channel to output. But result is the same. If you have signal coming out of the unselected input, fair bit of will bleed into the other channel. This is probably the spec for the relay they are using. If you play back at 80 dB and higher, you may be able to hear the unselected input.

A solution to this is to turn off the unselected input using some kind of automation.

Conclusions
The RS-1 is fully transparent from input to output as a passive switch should be. There is some bleeding of one channel into another and you get to decide if that is too much for you or not. Despite being rather expensive, I am going to recommend the RS-1 for its robust construction and remote control ability.

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As always, questions, comments, recommendations, etc. are welcome.

Getting more reviews out of the way so I can go back to evaluating my headphone measuring gear. Meanwhile, you can help by donating generously using : https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/how-to-support-audio-science-review.8150/
 

waynel

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#2
I sent this device to Amir to test as I’m looking for a fully transparent HT bypass mode and this will do the trick and free me to use a high SINAD DAC (I have an Okto DAC8 pro on order) for music and the analog outs from my AVR for movies both feeding my AHB2 through this device. My subs have 2 inputs so no need for a second switch. The AVR trigger will automatically switch the RS-1 when the AVR is on and I’ll program my Harmony Hub to make sure only one source is on at once.
thanks to Amir for testing.
 
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waynel

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#4
For the less experienced ASR folks, what is the use case for a switcher like this?
Adding home theater bypass to any DAC.

both an AVR LR preouts and a DAC can drive the same amp.
 

waynel

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#5
OP
amirm

amirm

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Thread Starter #6
For the less experienced ASR folks, what is the use case for a switcher like this?
Beside the stated use case, another would be to build an automated AB box to switch between powered speakers.
 

win

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#7
Hope this isn't a dumb question, but why would there be any crosstalk at all?
Why doesn't the relay simply select one hot lead (or however many poles it needs to control) and put an air gap between the other source?
 

NCX

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#8
This looks useful since I can connect my Audiolab M-DAC to it, then out put to an XLR amp and speakers instead of disconnecting the speakers when I want to use the amp.
 

Tks

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#9
delete.jpg


Does this mean the AP's DAC clock isn't bang-on as most DACs that have zero deviation?
 

Jaimo

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#11
I'm curious to see what the innards look like - any nude pics?

Here's a wiring schematic -
1597456509973.png
 

waynel

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#13
Switching the cables would be even cheaper but I’d like the system to be easily controlled with a universal remote with one button “listen to music” and one button “watch a movie” so the whole family can use it without confusion. The trigger control is essential for my use case.
 

restorer-john

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#14
Why doesn't the relay simply select one hot lead (or however many poles it needs to control) and put an air gap between the other source?
Capacitive coupling. Wiring proximity etc. If the unselected terminal is just left floating instead of tied to ground this will happen. The relay contacts are also in close proximity. The device could easily be improved with four separate relays, one for each- hot/cold left/right and A/B.
 
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amirm

amirm

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Thread Starter #16
Hope this isn't a dumb question, but why would there be any crosstalk at all?
Why doesn't the relay simply select one hot lead (or however many poles it needs to control) and put an air gap between the other source?
YOu mean between inputs? If so, there is capacitance between contacts so so some amount of signal always bleeds. Relay contacts are very close to each other so leakage is higher than would be otherwise.
 
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amirm

amirm

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Thread Starter #17
Ah yes from Melbourne Australia my hometown. I hope you gave it a good wipe down before testing
I didn't want to make it too excited by doing that....
 

win

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#20
YOu mean between inputs? If so, there is capacitance between contacts so so some amount of signal always bleeds. Relay contacts are very close to each other so leakage is higher than would be otherwise.
Indeed. Ostensibly, people can accomplish the same task (albeit without remote control) by simply swapping the cables, and do so with 0 dB cross-source crosstalk. If you have a kid, that takes care of the remote control function, too.
 
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