YFS Products

by Brad Easton and Kevin OBrien on 04/06/2012


So we wanted to let our readers in on some major work we've been doing lately. We were pretty excited about our HD Ref-1 music server. After all, it's the most powerful music server available, ANYWHERE. Well, we decided that wasn't good enough so we started designing its more mature, more refined sibling, the HD Ref-2. We believe we have made the world's best digital source even better.

The older Ref-1 design was based on quad-core processing, a 1 TB drive, 4 GB of RAM, a DVD ROM, and a basic DVI/ HDMI/ D-SUB PCI video card.  We housed the Ref-1 in an industrial, rack-mountable, lockable steel chassis.

The NEW Ref-2 base model employs 6-core processing, a 2 TB hard disc, 8 GB of RAM,  the same video card, and the same chassis as the Ref-1. The user can upgrade the RAM to 16 GB, the DVD ROM drive to Blu-Ray,  and the hard drive space to 3 TB if desired. That upgrade option is referred to as the Ref-2 SE or Special Edition. This upgraded model also employs a PCI digital audio output card of the user's choice. The standard audio output option is the SOtM USB 2.0 card. The Lynx AES 16 is also available with digital XLR output for $500 over our SE listed price. We can also add analog L and R outputs if the user prefers not to use a DAC. (We don't recommend this based on grounding issues) We have also included our newest spin on the original YFS HD Ref-2 that we call the Ref-2 SSD. It employs a solid state drive and we omit the standard hard disc all together. This keeps our operating SPL's even lower than the Ref-2 SE! It has all the same specs as the Special Edition model but the HDD has been removed and a 480 GB SSD has been installed in its place. We like options and we assume you do too.

One of the major areas we've improved upon is the operating noise levels of our original server. The Ref-1 was acceptable but we went even further and we can guarantee operation at normal conditions from 3 feet away at under 20 dB!  No server is truly silent. Even with a fan-less design, the server still has to deal with added noise from the hard disc unless the design implements a solid state drive ONLY. Put your ear to a hard disc when you get a chance and tell us if it's truly silent. We think you'll be quite surprised at what you hear.

Last time we checked, there are no affordable SSD's over 512 GB yet. You could pay ~ $2500 for a 1 TB SSD but we doubt ANY customers will be willing to shell out that kind of cash for a storage drive. So, for the foreseeable future, SSD's are not the answer. Did we mention the failure rate of SSD's as well? We feel they're not reliable enough or cheap enough to implement in all our designs just yet. We have implemented them in our Ref-2 SSD model based on popular demand. We didn't want to do it but apparently there's enough demand that we decided to offer it as an option. We use our own redundant hard drive system which allows the user to plug in a standard HDD that is already set up and mounted in the server in the event the SSD dies. The user must plug the power into the HDD after they remove their faulty SSD to RMA. The operating system is already installed along with all the programs and drivers your original SSD contained. You'll still have to personalize your back-up drive/ system and reload your music but it's only until we can get your SSD back up and running. We don't want our users to be without their servers while their SSD is being replaced. It's a perfect plan in case the SSD permanently goes south. We've thought it all out so you can sit back and enjoy your music.

The other guys claim their designs are "silent" and "fan-less". You CAN achieve one without the other. We don't think many folks realize this. A "silent" design is not truly silent. Why don't these server manufacturers tell you what SPL their products are running at? Because if they did, you'd realize they're not really silent at all. We aren't afraid to test our operating SPL's and PUBLISH them because we've got nothing to hide. In fact, you can see into our design with the cover on as we have implemented a perforated metal top cover and we're not hiding anything from anybody. We don't have to.

Another area we've improved upon is our control options for our new server. The Ref-1 needed a keyboard, monitor, and mouse to operate. The Ref-2 is fully operational with ONLY A TABLET! The user doesn't need to plug anything in to the Ref-2 to get it up and running and fully operational. Choose your favorite tablet, power on the Ref-2, wait a couple minutes, and then start controlling your new Ref-2 server anywhere your local network allows. VERY COOL!

We think you'll enjoy using the most powerful, user friendly music server the audiophile world has to offer. It's only a matter of time until the other guys are scrambling to catch up. 

Contact us with questions.  We're here to help!

Unfortunately, we no longer offer the Ref-2 / Ref-2 SE / Ref-2 SSD. We are currently shipping the new Ref-3 replacement for the Ref-2. 

We offer package deals on our YFS USB cables if you plan on buying a server too. Contact us for more details.

THANKS for your interest in YFS products!

- YFS Design Team


Welcome to the Machine

After trying to find the best digital source to drive our 2 channel systems over the past year, we realized the possible potential and more importantly, the limitations of all the 'music servers' that are currently available.  We have built a true high definition digital source that's on par with recording studio servers that record the music we listen to everyday.  Why not use a recording studio server to drive your high end 2 channel system?  Isn't that what we are all after; the closest thing to live, non-reproduced music we can get?

What does every audiophile want in the perfect music server?  I know we want the most capable, high powered computer acting as our digital music source as possible.  This is something you will learn quickly when you start testing different laptops and desktops.  Most of these make-shift 'music servers' are pretty much equivalent specs-wise and don't separate themselves from the pack. 

What if someone came up with a truly breakthrough server that put the competition to shame?  How about a server that could hold all of our uncompressed music?  How about a server that doesn't require us to move our songs over to a Solid State Hard Drive before listening?  Could someone make a server we could rip CD/ DVD-Audio discs with while listening to our favorite music with absolutely NO audio drop-outs OR loss in sound quality?  How about surfing the web while we're listening?  Could someone build a server that isn't obsolete in 6 months because the hardware is out-dated?  How about a remote desktop application that could control our server from our favorite listening position without a monitor, keyboard, or mouse?  Can we find a product to do all of the above while simultaneously remaining quieter than a laptop?

We feel at YFS that we have answered all of the above questions. Our first experience with our HD-Ref-1 server can be comparable to going from standard def TV to HDTV.  With the HD-Ref-1 you can hear EVERY subtle detail and nuance of your music in a deep, wide soundstage that completely envelopes you.  You can truly hear the musicians playing their instruments as if they were right there in front of you.  The PRaT you feel from the percussion on some of your favorite tracks is absolutely, toe-tappingly PERFECT! 

Imagine not fighting over the sweet spot on the couch.  Imagine hearing that same perfect sound projected throughout your listening room following you as you walk around. This experience is truly unique.  After a short time with the HD-Ref-1, it sounded like we made major upgrades in ALL our system components.  Who would have thought just a source component could make such a drastic improvement in our system?  We certainly didn't until now.

Why buy a music server from the other guys that needs to be upgraded from the base model to sound its best?  We give you the features you really need all in one model that doesn't require any upgrades to meet your needs.  We do offer a Lynx Digital Out card option but that's it!  Obviously, we can create the HD-Ref-1 to your personal specifications but we feel we really won't have to worry about that.  It's that good!

Did we mention our server is housed in a heavy-duty, industrial STEEL, rack-mountable chassis that effectively shields critical components from EMI and other noise?  Our final product weighs in at approximately 50 lbs!

We're almost finished testing our final iteration of the HD-Ref-1 and we feel we're close to having it completely dialed in.  Feel free to contact us about anything you may have on your mind regarding our latest offering.

THANKS for reading and we look forward to hearing from you about this breakthrough digital source product.

Contact us for availability and special pricing on our truly revolutionary computer audio music servers.

Best regards from the YFS design team!



by Kevin OBrien on May 4th, 2015


A lot of folks are headed down the Mac Mini path. It's a great direction to head in when choosing a dedicated music server. The Mac Mini with its i7 quad-core Intel processor and maxed out RAM / SSD's, gives the end user one heck of a server at a great price. Then comes the mods. Our PS-12m and Internal Power Filter mod come at a cost. The YFS PS-12m does what we want it to but there's one caveat: it's relatively expensive at its asking price of $1,895 MSRP. Add our Mac Mini DIY power filter kit for $375 MSRP and then add a YFS PS-5 USB linear power supply for $695 MSRP to power your DAC's USB input receiver with a YFS 'Split' USB cable ($525 MSRP) and things can get out of hand pretty quickly.

What's our answer?

We drastically cut the expense of our YFS Mac Mini source component package by offering the PS-512 power supply. This unit is specifically designed to power the Mac Mini with 8 continuous Amps of audiophile grade power. The PS-512 can reach 12 Amps of peak power which is well over the stock Apple switcher (7 Amps peak). We did this while simultaneously adding a 5 Volt rail to the same box to power your 'Split' USB or other DC powered component of your choice. The PS-512 packs the PS-5 USB and the PS-12m into a single-box solution with an 'affordable' price tag of $1,095 MSRP. The PS-512 not only makes your music sound better but you'll get faster start-up and shut-down, a quicker responding machine, better video performance, and an overall better Mac Mini experience all the way around.

Can the PS-512 match the performance of the PS-12m and PS-5 USB on their own? No, it can't but unless you have a reference 'mega-buck' system, you probably won't hear the difference between the two solutions. If you do own a high-dollar reference system, by all means, go with the 2-box solution and know you're getting the best money can buy in terms of 'affordability' for a USB-based transport. If money is tight and audio is not your number one priority (or you just plain value your money) the PS-512 plus the YFS Internal Power Filter Mac Mini mod is the answer.

The PS-512 comes standard with a 30" umbilical that utilizes a quick-disconnect metal connector on the PS side and a Switchcraft locking 2.5mmx5.5mm DC barrel jack on the Mac Mini side. Our YFS Internal Power Filter is the perfect mate for our PS-512 and sports the Switchcraft female connector that mates perfectly with the PS-512. 

Please specify your mains voltage when ordering (115V / 230V) and allow 6 to 9 weeks for a UPS tracking number as all YFS products are made to order. We do our best to get all orders out in a timely manner but sometimes we run into busy times of the year. Please be patient and realize we're working as quickly as we can. Thank you for understanding.


Drop us a line and we'll gladly chat about what you'll notice between models, etc. Let us get you in touch with some past YFS customers to help you with your system decisions. We're here to help.

We are taking our first steps into 'affordable' high end audio... This is new territory.  We're open to suggestions as always. Don't hesitate to contact us with any questions.

Thanks for reading.

- YFS Design Team


by Kevin OBrien on June 26, 2013

YFS PS-5 USB LINEAR DC POWER SUPPLY                                                                                                         

Our YFS 'Split' Ref USB interconnect needed a partner in crime so we figured why not pair it with a high quality 5 volt linear power supply with a female USB input on the rear? Sounds like a fair enough question to me. Why not? So we did.                                                                                                                                    

You can use this custom audiophile-grade linear power supply to enhance your current 'Y' USB cable experience from another brand. We encourage you to use our YFS Reference 'Split' USB but if you really don't want to, we're not going to force you to...

So what does it do already? This power supply allows you to feed your current USB enabled device (via your 'Y' or 'Split' USB cable) pure, audiophile-grade power to your USB input receiver. This translates to improved sound staging, a blacker background, and more "life-like" images. Better bass as well as clearer highs have also been reported. Your mileage will vary depending on your personal system.

The PS-5 takes the place of your computer's +5V USB power bus. This is never a bad idea. Check out our "list" of compatible DACs and SPDIF converters in our FAQ section of our site. So is it worth it? Ask our current PS-5 customers if you'd like... We can get you in touch with previous customers, just ask!

Our custom USB linear power supply is available in 115V and 230V. Please specify which voltage you need when contacting us. The YFS PS-5 uses a standard IEC connector for power. The YFS PS-5 is a CUSTOM built product, made by hand in Upstate NY, all the way down to the circuit boards, and we do not stock them.

Please allow 6 to 8 weeks for delivery after your order is placed. Add another possible two weeks if ordering from outside the United States for delivery reasons.

Thank you for understanding.

We're excited about the YFS PS-5. We hope you are too... Contact us for pricing and availability.

- YFS Design Team


by Kevin OBrien on December 26, 2012


The linear DC power supply market wasn't big enough so we decided to add to it.  :-)  YFS now offers a custom linear DC power supply. We call them the YFS PS series. 5 Volt, 9 Volt, 12 Volt, 15 Volt, 18 Volt and any other output voltage DC power supply is now available to replace your existing wall-wart or brick power supply. Each unit will be made to order and can be shipped 4 weeks at the earliest after an order is placed.

The unit pictured here is our PS-18. It's a linear DC power supply with an output voltage of 18 Volts at 1 Amp and an input voltage of approximately 120 Volts. After looking inside a few other manufacturer's units who we won't name here, we were a little disappointed with what we saw and heard. (Especially for the price)  Below is one of the boards from a YFS PS-9 power supply. You can see it's not exactly a production piece...

Contact us for more details if you're interested in picking one up to mate with your existing gear to give your system a little extra kick. Below is the 1-meter umbilical for a YFS PS-18 with an optional locking 2.1mm inner diameter barrel jack. This particular cable will be hooked to a Zodiac DAC to provide power in place of the stock wall-wart power supply.

Just let us know what input and output voltages your equipment requires and we'll get you taken care of. Let us know the type of connector your equipment requires as well. If there's a connector out there, you can be sure there's a way to find it somewhere. Below is a transformer from a YFS PS-9.

 THANKS for reading and we look forward to hearing from you.

 - YFS Design Team



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