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Best DAC/Headphone Amp - SMSL S6 Stack, DX3 Pro Plus, Topping E30/L30

PaulVans

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May 10, 2023
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Good afternoon,
I am fairly new, therefore if I have posted in the wrong category, I will fix my mistake.
I have a pair of Sundaras and I am looking for a DAC/Amp for them Currently I have an Audioengine D1. I’m looking at:
  • SMSL SU6/SH6 (260€)
  • Topping E30/L30 (€330)
  • Topping DX3 Pro+ (200€).
Other brands, especially american, are not available or too expensive. Shenzhenaudio gear is easy to buy.
Is there any reason to prefer one over another? Does one stack have better measurements or has anyone tried them and noticed a difference? Many reviewers say that E30/L30 sounds identical to higher tiers Topping stuff, and therefore I am oriented to that, but if it does not differ much from the cheaper options, saving bucks would be nice.
Thanks for your opinions!
 
I'd take the DX3 Pro+, despite the mechanically suboptimal 3.5mm headphone connector, due to its superior price/performance ratio.

That as long as you don't want to play back (early) CD releases with pre-emphasis mastering with any of these (assuming that SMSL is just as ignorant as Topping in that regard).

Spreading the word here as this issue gets too little attention, considering that otherwise we otherwise agonize over 1-2 dB of a jitter peak below any hearing thresholds.
 
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