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Nobsound 3-IN-1-OUT XLR Audio Switch Review

amirm

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This is a review and detailed measurements of the Nobsound MC-103 Pro 3-IN-1-OUT XLR Audio Switcher. The unit I have came with the brand Douk on it so that is what I used in my notations below. I suspect multiple companies put their name on it. I purchased it a few days ago from Amazon. The MC-103 Pro costs US $59 from Amazon including Prime shipping.

This is a sturdy but small box with a large input selector on it:

Douk MC103-Pro XLR switcher Audio Review.jpg

The selector has a scratchy feel to it but does the job. The box is too shallow to be able to control the heavy XLR cables I was using with it so had a tendency to tilt back.

The back has just the connectors you would expect:
Douk MC103-Pro XLR switcher Back panel connectors Audio Review.jpg

This is a passive selector/switch so there is no need for power. As such, it should be bi-directional although I just used it as three inputs and one out.

Selector Audio Measurements
As usual we start with our dashboard with 4 volts in, and 4 volts out (for XLR/balanced connections):

Douk MC103-Pro XLR switcher Audio Measurements.png


What you are seeing is the performance of my Audio Precision APx555. Indeed, I selected internal loopback in the analyzer and got the same results. This is how it should be but it is a relief seeing it in numbers.

Next I checked crosstalk, again with the MC103 Pro and with internal loopback on the analyzer:

Douk MC103-Pro XLR switcher Crosstalk Audio Measurements.png


Marvelous! :) Note that which input you use doesn't matter either.

Signal to noise ratio was just a hair worse than internal loopback:
Douk MC103-Pro XLR switcher SNR Audio Measurements.png


For last test, I feed one input (not selected) white noise and tested what happened when I turned that on and off:

Douk MC103-Pro XLR switcher Input Crosstalk Audio Measurements.png


So there is 10 dB of bleed from one input to another. The still gives us signal to noise ratio of 124 dB which is well beyond any dynamic range we would require. If you don't want to see such a degradation, just don't activate the other inputs at full amplitude.

Conclusions
The Douk/Nobsound MC-103 Pro does what you expect it to do: switch between three balanced inputs with essentially no degradation even when held up to the high standard of my audio analyzer. If you don't need gain/volume control or remote control, it would make a nice "pre-amp" replacement.

Needless to say, I recommend the MC-103 Pro. I plan to use it to select between active speakers for listening tests.

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

Went to see a movie with my wife (last Star Wars). It must have been one or two years since the last time we went to a theater. Enjoyed it good and lamented that I am too poor to go movies more often . So would you please donate some money so I get more of a break from you all using: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/how-to-support-audio-science-review.8150/
 

bequietjk

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Man, I couldn't be happier that you're reviewing all of this gear and that we all get to have a piece of the action. Products like this are a blessing and thankfully you are kind enough to be testing and sharing all of these results. This is a nice piece of equipment!
 

Noob

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I've been waiting this for so long...
To be fair I was waiting for the 3-IN-3-OUT XLR Balanced / RCA Stereo.
View attachment 47150
View attachment 47151

Should we expect the same results?
Since it is the same manufacturer, I expect the same kind of quality design. From this review, I would go ahead and buy it but also send it in to Amir for testing just to be sure and for the benefit of others who might be looking at that specific item.
 

Penguino

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Could you use this with headphones? Seems like it'd be a great comparison tool between dacs, amps, and cans if that's the case.
 

lszomb

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Unless those devices can be matched precisely in music volume as the device is just a switcher with no attenuation control.

Could you use this with headphones? Seems like it'd be a great comparison tool between dacs, amps, and cans if that's the case.
 

GokieKS

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The weight (or rather lack thereof) really is the only problem with these devices. I'm really tempted to open up mine (3-to-1, which is exactly the same thing with just different connectors) to put some additional weights in there myself just so it doesn't want to lift off the table from the weight of XLR cables.
 

lszomb

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After that, you can add two more zeros after the current price as the weight made it hi-end qualified.

The weight (or rather lack thereof) really is the only problem with these devices. I'm really tempted to open up mine (3-to-1, which is exactly the same thing with just different connectors) to put some additional weights in there myself just so it doesn't want to lift off the table from the weight of XLR cables.
 

pavuol

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This looks like a hint for future "blind tests" of speakers :)
Like:
A: Amirs' "ordinary people" friends/neighbors: sit and see XYZ switcher and just a buch of speaker boxes in front of them
B: Amirs' "pro/insider" friends: sit and see XYZ switcher and a light ("sound neutral") curtain in front of them :)
 

LostOne___

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This looks like a hint for future "blind tests" of speakers :)
Like:
A: Amirs' "ordinary people" friends/neighbors: sit and see XYZ switcher and just a buch of speaker boxes in front of them
B: Amirs' "pro/insider" friends: sit and see XYZ switcher and a light ("sound neutral") curtain in front of them :)
In which category would you put Amir's wife? :) since, you know, she's the #1 speaker external judge as of now
 

pavuol

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In which category would you put Amir's wife? :) since, you know, she's the #1 speaker external judge as of now
I dare not classify, but as you see, I started the opposite way of Nobsound positions (XYZ), so there is still at least one category left to be specified.

Maybe D could be for "audiophile aristocrats" defending their ultra high end gear/cables :)
 

MC_RME

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For last test, I feed one input (not selected) white noise and tested what happened when I turned that on and off:
So there is 10 dB of bleed from one input to another. The still gives us signal to noise ratio of 124 dB which is well beyond any dynamic range we would require. If you don't want to see such a degradation, just don't activate the other inputs at full amplitude.

I am a bit confused about this, and have the impression that it is misleading. Testing crosstalk to other inputs would require to short the unused input, because that is what happens when you connect whatever electronics. Testing unused inputs in open state is pointless. With an electronic source connected it would dampen the bleed to (most probably) nothing. Or did I get the setup wrong?
 

daftcombo

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pma

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Looks good, I have just ordered one. Thank you for directing my attention to this product, @amirm . I was missing the possibility to switch between balanced sources in A/B tests, I only have a unit that allows 3 SE and 1 balanced input. 3 balanced inputs are great for my purposes.
 
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