• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). There are daily reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

AOSHIDA SMSL C200 Review (DAC & Amp)

Rate this DAC & HP Amp

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 6 2.5%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 1 0.4%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther

    Votes: 44 18.5%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 187 78.6%

  • Total voters
    238

vkvedam

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Forum Donor
Joined
Apr 12, 2019
Messages
550
Likes
739
Location
Coventry, UK
That's great performance for the price!
 

madmalkav

Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2022
Messages
26
Likes
7
Anyone know if there's an online manual for this? I want to know if the separate Preouts and Headphone selections retain independent volume settings.
I would love to know this too, and the manual doesn´t seem to explain it? Also, changing outputs seems a little of a PITA according to the manual.

Does anyone know if both RCA and TRS balanced can be output simultaneously, and are both controlled by the volume know (not passthrough)? Asking, because on my Denafrips Ares II, it is recommended to only use RCA, or XLR, but not both simultaneously.
I would love to know this too.
Shoot. I thought it was 3.5 mm so didn't measure it. Will do that and report back.
And this too. Feeling very curious about this little device as you can see :)
 

Jimster480

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jan 26, 2018
Messages
2,263
Likes
1,560
Location
Tampa Bay
Just recived my topping ex5 2 days back.. Should i return it and get smsl c200 for 219$ instead ? Planning to replace my current micca g2 dac with this. my headphones are sennheiser hd 598se planning to get sundara in future.. I also use jbl lsr 305 as my powered speakers.. Will i be able to switch between headphone and speakers without removing/attaching cables? ex5 can do this.. Also Is there any big difference in terms of power and soundquality between ex5 and smsl c200?

Thanks
Regards..
S
Personally topping has better build quality. The Ex5 has real XLR balanced that doesn't need adapters and it has MQA (if you care).
Additionally the screen is easy to look at and the amp section has a bit better performance.
So I wouldn't downgrade for a bit lower price unless the money really matters where every dollar has to be pinched. Also since time and money will be wasted in returning the Ex5.
 

audiofun

Active Member
Joined
Jul 4, 2021
Messages
194
Likes
180
Personally topping has better build quality. The Ex5 has real XLR balanced that doesn't need adapters and it has MQA (if you care).
Additionally the screen is easy to look at and the amp section has a bit better performance.
So I wouldn't downgrade for a bit lower price unless the money really matters where every dollar has to be pinched. Also since time and money will be wasted in returning the Ex5.
topping's build quality is pretty poor.
see for example the screen problem many people complained about:
and the problem nowadays is the manufacture often either use non standard parts or scrap the chip marking off, making part replacement super difficult, or most times impossible.

i wouldn't recommend ex5 at all. it has higher price point, and lower performance. reliability is also an issue.

a trs to xlr dongle is pretty cheap.

my recommendation would be --- buy the cheaper one as you won't be able to hear the difference anyway. Forget about durability or build quality. If the thing breaks, ask for replacement, and if that's difficult, try to fix it. if this doesn't work, just discard and buy another. You can buy many C200s at Topping D90SE+A90D's price point, and they behaves the same:)
 
Last edited:

Jimster480

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jan 26, 2018
Messages
2,263
Likes
1,560
Location
Tampa Bay
topping's build quality is pretty poor.
see for example the screen problem many people complained about:
and the problem nowadays is the manufacture often either use non standard parts or scrap the chip marking off, making part replacement super difficult, or most times impossible.

i wouldn't recommend ex5 at all. it has higher price point, and lower performance. reliability is also an issue.

a trs to xlr dongle is pretty cheap.

my recommendation would be --- buy the cheaper one as you won't be able to hear the difference anyway. Forget about durability or build quality. If the thing breaks, ask for replacement, and if that's difficult, try to fix it. if this doesn't work, just discard and buy another. You can buy many C200s at Topping DX7Pro+'s price point:)
The performance of both products is basically on par. The Amp section of the EX5 is slightly better so any additional performance from the C200 DAC is wasted in the inferior Amp anyway provided you are actually using the device as a combo unit.

I haven't read anything about EX5's failing specifically. Having a single failed element on a display is a small thing, SMSL customers are complaining all over these forums about complete unit failures on all their DAC's. Having Coax inputs go out entirely, having clipping or voltage randomly start coming through the DAC. As of late there have been tons of issues with SMSL products just on these forums...
It is also hard to say that if you get an SMSL product today; lf they will even make it tomorrow! They literally have about 50 products on the market; most of which have no point in existing and they just discontinue them randomly.
So you can be assured that the resale value of an SMSL product is going to be near zero unfortunately. I know because I have owned a few SMSL products and selling them isn't really something that can be done unfortunately...

Here is the stack I am testing today;
1661856450394.png


With a random brand amp that I just received from the company for testing. Stuck it in line with my Archel2 pro to compare.
 

rarewolf

Member
Joined
Feb 22, 2022
Messages
78
Likes
30
topping's build quality is pretty poor.
see for example the screen problem many people complained about:
and the problem nowadays is the manufacture often either use non standard parts or scrap the chip marking off, making part replacement super difficult, or most times impossible.

i wouldn't recommend ex5 at all. it has higher price point, and lower performance. reliability is also an issue.

a trs to xlr dongle is pretty cheap.

my recommendation would be --- buy the cheaper one as you won't be able to hear the difference anyway. Forget about durability or build quality. If the thing breaks, ask for replacement, and if that's difficult, try to fix it. if this doesn't work, just discard and buy another. You can buy many C200s at Topping D90SE+A90D's price point, and they behaves the same:)

I’ll only add … that the one thing you’ll never find in an equipment forum is a true measure of all those who are perfectly happy with their devices that happen to be working perfectly…

… like my DX3P+… #jussayin
 

Jimster480

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jan 26, 2018
Messages
2,263
Likes
1,560
Location
Tampa Bay
Lots of stuff for a super low price, nice.
This definitely is quite the value Champ. So many features for a low price.
However still the Atom+ Stack from JDSLabs is the "best value" considering both are $99 and I doubt there will be an audible difference between the two even if the Atom stack has slightly worse performance.
 

curly747

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2022
Messages
16
Likes
21
This definitely is quite the value Champ. So many features for a low price.
However still the Atom+ Stack from JDSLabs is the "best value" considering both are $99 and I doubt there will be an audible difference between the two even if the Atom stack has slightly worse performance.
The Atom + stack has no remote and no bluetooth and no coaxial input. So i don't think its like for like if comparing value.
 

stallion317

Member
Joined
Jul 15, 2022
Messages
9
Likes
2
Anyone know if there's an online manual for this? I want to know if the separate Preouts and Headphone selections retain independent volume settings.
I would love to know this too, and the manual doesn´t seem to explain it? Also, changing outputs seems a little of a PITA according to the manual.

Does anyone know if both RCA and TRS balanced can be output simultaneously, and are both controlled by the volume know (not passthrough)? Asking, because on my Denafrips Ares II, it is recommended to only use RCA, or XLR, but not both simultaneously.
I would love to know this too.
Shoot. I thought it was 3.5 mm so didn't measure it. Will do that and report back.
And this too. Feeling very curious about this little device as you can see :)
Bump.
Can any one help regarding this...
 
Last edited:

Hxx

Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2021
Messages
60
Likes
46
However still the Atom+ Stack from JDSLabs is the "best value" considering both are $99 and I doubt there will be an audible difference between the two even if the Atom stack has slightly worse performance.
genuinely curious why would anyone want this stack when the dx3 pro+ is superior in every way for the same price and its a combo unit and doesnt need 2 wall warts and has BT and remote and better amp. not trying to bash a US company but unless u had a bad experience with topping, i dont see the point of going with anything from JDS tbh
 
  • Like
Reactions: t$$

JSmith

Major Contributor
Joined
Feb 8, 2021
Messages
3,237
Likes
7,370
Location
Algol Perseus
Can any one help regarding this...
Previous SMSL models have output simultaneous via RCA and XLR/TRS... this likely does too, as many DAC's do. The DAC should have HP out and Line out, so when selecting HP out the RCA/TRS will not output a signal.


JSmith
 

Jimster480

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jan 26, 2018
Messages
2,263
Likes
1,560
Location
Tampa Bay
genuinely curious why would anyone want this stack when the dx3 pro+ is superior in every way for the same price and its a combo unit and doesnt need 2 wall warts and has BT and remote and better amp. not trying to bash a US company but unless u had a bad experience with topping, i dont see the point of going with anything from JDS tbh
I always forget about the DX3+ and the price it sells for. I don't own one and don't know anyone else who owns one so I always forget about its existence. Its true that it has way more features than the Atom+ Stack for a slightly lower price including LDAC... although I am still not sure about the usefulness of LDAC on a desktop product like this.
 

Jimster480

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jan 26, 2018
Messages
2,263
Likes
1,560
Location
Tampa Bay
atom+ stack also has no balanced inputs/outputs.
Yea true, I didn't think of that.
The Atom + stack has no remote and no bluetooth and no coaxial input. So i don't think its like for like if comparing value.
Atom+ has SPDIF Toslink, just not Coax. Remote sure, but you also don't need it... honestly not sure what people use these remotes for? I guess people like to pair them with speakers and then connect their phones via LDAC? But if that is the case... it is also pointless to have something with so much performance because LDAC can't match it.... however I guess if the price is low enough "who cares"?
However features are features, I definitely cannot say that the Atom stuff has features it doesn't have. I was just thinking about what is actually just $200 or less, but then someone reminded me of the DX3 again.
 

curly747

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2022
Messages
16
Likes
21
Yea true, I didn't think of that.

Atom+ has SPDIF Toslink, just not Coax. Remote sure, but you also don't need it... honestly not sure what people use these remotes for? I guess people like to pair them with speakers and then connect their phones via LDAC? But if that is the case... it is also pointless to have something with so much performance because LDAC can't match it.... however I guess if the price is low enough "who cares"?
However features are features, I definitely cannot say that the Atom stuff has features it doesn't have. I was just thinking about what is actually just $200 or less, but then someone reminded me of the DX3 again.
Yeah I can see in a desktop situation those things are not so useful. But i have my dac setup on tv / hifi shelf and have an old streamer and a tv and sometimes a laptop connected. Remote is very useful for input switching and volume control. I rarely ever use controls on the DAC itself. Bluetooth is great since the kids can jump on and play there own Spotify playlists through the main stereo. To my ears LDAC through the DO100 sounds great. I was quite surprised. I expect it would sound just as good using the C200 since it's the same spec.
 

Jimster480

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jan 26, 2018
Messages
2,263
Likes
1,560
Location
Tampa Bay
Yeah I can see in a desktop situation those things are not so useful. But i have my dac setup on tv / hifi shelf and have an old streamer and a tv and sometimes a laptop connected. Remote is very useful for input switching and volume control. I rarely ever use controls on the DAC itself. Bluetooth is great since the kids can jump on and play there own Spotify playlists through the main stereo. To my ears LDAC through the DO100 sounds great. I was quite surprised. I expect it would sound just as good using the C200 since it's the same spec.
O Yea LDAC does sound great for room speakers. I use it every night when I go to sleep. I have a BT ONLY DAC that I use with my sound bar.. I might actually sell it and get something like this though since I could also use it for TV audio but I rarely use the TV...
My kids aren't old enough to use Spotify yet themselves, but I also use BT via Spotify every night for their sleeping Playlist.
 

FreaK

Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2019
Messages
53
Likes
63
Shoot. I thought it was 3.5 mm so didn't measure it. Will do that and report back.
Hello Amir, did you had chance to measure the 4.4mm output? Is there a chance it could drive low impedance headphones, like the DCA Stealth better with that output?
I have a Drop Aeon Closed X, which is also low imp., i try to figure out if this unit could be good for me or not.
 

sjeesjie

Active Member
Joined
Aug 16, 2020
Messages
238
Likes
125
RME ADI-2 DAC can do so, and I’m pretty sure there are others as well.

Perhaps the reviewed DAC can as well, but I don’t recall amirm writing about that in the review.
The DACs these days are all so similar that @amirm wasn’t even bothered to test this.
 
Top Bottom