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I *think* my Topping DAC is failing - any suggestions?

ommadusk

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I've got the DX7 Pro+ and it has occasional crackle problems in the left channel. Does anyone else leave their DACs on all the time? If I turn off the DAC at the back and turn it back on the problem clears up and if I switch the XLR outputs I get the crackles in the other speaker. I also get hissing in both channels. It was happening once a day but I reinstalled the firmware and that sorted it out for a few days but in the last day it's happened twice so it might be getting worse. Perhaps it's the USB cable but then why would it correct itself when the DAC's turned off and on? I doubt it could be a problem with my PC.

I'm not sure whether I'm going to return it yet. It's still under warranty. I'll try asking the seller for a refund because he's been very helpful to me in the past. I'm looking at possibly getting another DAC and I was looking at other DACs anyway. It doesn't have to have a headphone amp. I want a 12v trigger, balanced output, a pre-amp. A remote control would be nice though not essential. I'd quite like an output of 5v or more. I was looking at the RME ADI-2 DAC FS but it doesn't have a 12v trigger and I can't see any SMSL DACs with one? I like the look of the Topping E50 and D70 Pro Sabre but I don't want it to happen again. Gustard maybe? I'd welcome any suggestions.

Of course I may just stick with my DX7 especially if the seller can't give me a refund.
 
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ommadusk

ommadusk

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Thanks in advance.
 

ta240

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....I'm not sure whether I'm going to return it yet. It's still under warranty. I'll try asking the seller for a refund because he's been very helpful to me in the past....
How long have you had it? Are there really sellers that will refund under warranty? All I've ever seen are repairs or replacement.
Some sellers like Parts-Express will handle the replacement and then deal with Topping for you, but with others you have to pay to ship it to China.

I had 2 D30s die; one PE replaced the other that I hadn't bought from them got thrown away (yay! more disposable junk).

It turns out cheap is a relative term based on lifespan and service.
Imagine how cheap all electronics could be if every company just said "Have a problem? Ship it back to the factory in ______ country". Few would bother so their warranty costs would be next to zero. Of course the landfills would be piled even higher...
 
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RayDunzl

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Does anyone else leave their DACs on all the time?

Yes, but it's not a Topping.

On because it is always in use for something.

Hmmm... 10 years now:

1692024806823.png
 

MRC01

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I've got the DX7 Pro+ and it has occasional crackle problems in the left channel. ...
I'm not sure whether I'm going to return it yet. It's still under warranty. ...
I'm looking at possibly getting another DAC and I was looking at other DACs anyway. It doesn't have to have a headphone amp. I want a 12v trigger, balanced output, a pre-amp. A remote control would be nice though not essential. I'd quite like an output of 5v or more. I was looking at the RME ADI-2 DAC FS ...
I'd welcome any suggestions.
My experience with Topping and SMSL is that you get excellent measured performance for a low price. But, the firmware can be buggy and the hardware is not as well made or reliable, nor is warranty or support as good. I don't mean to disparage them, since the level of measured performance is so high for what you pay. But high build quality, thorough QA in both software & hardware, and good warranty and support doesn't come for free. Choose your trade-off.

As for best measured performance for the dollar, the Topping E70 has what you're looking for. I recently got one myself. I've had good experiences with JDS and Schiit equipment, which also has great measured performance for the price. If you're willing to spend more, the RME has superior build quality, built like professional gear with excellent warranty and support to match.
 

Joe Smith

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Schiit Modi 3 on all the time; no problems so far. I alternate with a JDS Labs Atom+ just for kicks.
 

suttondesign

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My dx-7 pro for my headphone rig regularly spews out loud distortion. And I am an authorized dealer. Not sure about the brand now. I also deal RME and Benchmark, which are very robust, so I’m going to switch over. It’s not worth the bother of shipping a unit to China.
 
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ommadusk

ommadusk

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How long have you had it? Are there really sellers that will refund under warranty? All I've ever seen are repairs or replacement.
Some sellers like Parts-Express will handle the replacement and then deal with Topping for you, but with others you have to pay to ship it to China.

I had 2 D30s die; one PE replaced the other that I hadn't bought from them got thrown away (yay! more disposable junk).

It turns out cheap is a relative term based on lifespan and service. Imagine how cheap all electronics could be if every company just said "Have a problem? Ship it back to the factory in ______ country"
It's probably unrealistic. The seller exchanged my D90LE for this DAC a few weeks after the return window had closed as a favour. He did another favour and gave me a refund for a headphone amp because I thought it was faulty after the return window had closed. It probably wasn't faulty in the end. I should have kept the D90LE. I'm embarrassed to admit it but I exchanged it because somebody had said the DX7 Pro+ had better measurements and I just assumed it was a better DAC. I now realise that they'll both sound the same and I preferred the design of the D90LE.

I've had this DAC for 9 months.
 

MRC01

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If we're giving longevity examples:

My power amp (Adcom 5800) is 29 years old, with daily use and still measures and performs like new. Over the years I've replaced the power switch a couple of times which is a $20 part and takes 15 minutes to swap.

My speakers (Magnepan 3.6/R) are 23 years old, with daily use and still measure and perform like new. All original (including the tweeters).
 

NiagaraPete

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I've got the DX7 Pro+ and it has occasional crackle problems in the left channel. Does anyone else leave their DACs on all the time? If I turn off the DAC at the back and turn it back on the problem clears up and if I switch the XLR outputs I get the crackles in the other speaker. I also get hissing in both channels. It was happening once a day but I reinstalled the firmware and that sorted it out for a few days but in the last day it's happened twice so it might be getting worse. Perhaps it's the USB cable but then why would it correct itself when the DAC's turned off and on? I doubt it could be a problem with my PC.

I'm not sure whether I'm going to return it yet. It's still under warranty. I'll try asking the seller for a refund because he's been very helpful to me in the past. I'm looking at possibly getting another DAC and I was looking at other DACs anyway. It doesn't have to have a headphone amp. I want a 12v trigger, balanced output, a pre-amp. A remote control would be nice though not essential. I'd quite like an output of 5v or more. I was looking at the RME ADI-2 DAC FS but it doesn't have a 12v trigger and I can't see any SMSL DACs with one? I like the look of the Topping E50 and D70 Pro Sabre but I don't want it to happen again. Gustard maybe? I'd welcome any suggestions.

Of course I may just stick with my DX7 especially if the seller can't give me a refund.
My Topping has auto on standby and has been on since I bought it a couple years ago with no issues.
 

L5730

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Whilst not a bit of audio gear, I did have a Seasonic Prime Titanium PSU fail after less than 9 months. I think fate was tempted as the company only recently before stated they were increasing the warranty from 10 to 12 years. Mine didn't last the year. Amazon were great about handling the refund and postage back to them was of course free to me. I had to buy the slightly newer version of the same supply elsewhere due to stock levels. This one has been fine for a few years.

This was a computer PSU that was at least twice as expensive as competitive and perfectly adequate supplies from other brands. It just shows that even expensive stuff isn't perfect. However, I had fairly easy return or replacement here. Shipping back to East Asia would be a costly and annoying thing to have to do.
 
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ommadusk

ommadusk

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My Topping has auto on standby and has been on since I bought it a couple years ago with no issues.
I meant I have it off standby most of the time just idling.

It really should last longer. Having had a PA5 fail I'm a little disappointed in Topping.

It's happened again so that's three times since yesterday. I've messaged the seller. I really don't want to be without a DAC if I send it off. I already asked the seller if they could lend me a DAC! Here's hoping LOL.

Changing the USB cable made no difference.
 

groovybassist

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Spend the money to get something better.

My Matrix Audio Element X has been on continuously for 2+ years without a single hiccup. I expect it can go for 10 years like this.
 
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ommadusk

ommadusk

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I hope I don't have to spend that much money on a DAC to get reliabillity, I'm not saying it's not worth it. From the SINAD chart it looks like I'll have to get a Topping if I want a 12v trigger and a SINAD higher than 115dB.

The seller is emailing Topping because this problem only started after I updated to the newest firmware and driver. It happened only a day or two later so there's a strong correlation.
 
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ommadusk

ommadusk

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I have RME internal PC soundcards that I've used for years. They still work so DACs should last I think. I bought them secondhand as well.
 

groovybassist

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I hope I don't have to spend that much money on a DAC to get reliabillity, I'm not saying it's not worth it. From the SINAD chart it looks like I'll have to get a Topping if I want a 12v trigger and a SINAD higher than 115dB.

The seller is emailing Topping because this problem only started after I updated to the newest firmware and driver. It happened only a day or two later so there's a strong correlation.
I’m not suggesting you buy a Matrix Audio component or need to spend as much as the Element X costs to get good performance and reliability. I am suggesting that if you want low price, high performance and reliability, you have to be extremely careful and diligent about what you choose. I’d suggest JDS Labs as your best bet in that realm. Spending more doesn’t guarantee you’ll get all those things, but the odds increase greatly that you will get further up that curve.
 
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ommadusk

ommadusk

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Until such point that it becomes irrelevant maybe? The JDS Lab DACs do look nice but I know manufacturers are selective in measurements so I'd really like to have a DAC that's reviewed here.. I can get round the 12v trigger with a plug.
 

Dunring

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I've got the DX7 Pro+ and it has occasional crackle problems in the left channel. Does anyone else leave their DACs on all the time? If I turn off the DAC at the back and turn it back on the problem clears up and if I switch the XLR outputs I get the crackles in the other speaker. I also get hissing in both channels. It was happening once a day but I reinstalled the firmware and that sorted it out for a few days but in the last day it's happened twice so it might be getting worse. Perhaps it's the USB cable but then why would it correct itself when the DAC's turned off and on? I doubt it could be a problem with my PC.

I'm not sure whether I'm going to return it yet. It's still under warranty. I'll try asking the seller for a refund because he's been very helpful to me in the past. I'm looking at possibly getting another DAC and I was looking at other DACs anyway. It doesn't have to have a headphone amp. I want a 12v trigger, balanced output, a pre-amp. A remote control would be nice though not essential. I'd quite like an output of 5v or more. I was looking at the RME ADI-2 DAC FS but it doesn't have a 12v trigger and I can't see any SMSL DACs with one? I like the look of the Topping E50 and D70 Pro Sabre but I don't want it to happen again. Gustard maybe? I'd welcome any suggestions.

Of course I may just stick with my DX7 especially if the seller can't give me a refund.
I'd go into device manager if Windows and uncheck the power management tab for all your USB ports. If you have a printer or scanner swapping cables might tell you something. If your computer has a 3 prong plug for the power cord you could try that one and see if you get lucky. If trying a different power outlet doesn't help, I'd send it back if you can.
 
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