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Review and Measurements of the Topping D70 DAC

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I'm using foobar2000 and noticed there is difference in sound while "Use 64-bit ASIO drivers" is on, it's a bit softer overall. Has anyone noticed this?
 

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Veri

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I'm using foobar2000 and noticed there is difference in sound while "Use 64-bit ASIO drivers" is on, it's a bit softer overall. Has anyone noticed this?
I've had 32-bit sound marginally less loud. So I suppose it's a volume thing.
 
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I'm having some problems with volume on foobar 2000 and ASIO too.
With a Scarlet 2i4. Problems seems the same to me.
I'm talking about 5-7db.
I'm investigating.
 

CJH

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Recently received a D70 from Drop and am having problems. The unit will play PCM (via USB from computer using the supplied cable--I also tried a Belkin Gold USB cable to make sure it wasn't the cable) for a few minutes then it plays noise at full volume until you stop playback. If you start the song again--it just plays the noise at full volume. I have also tried playing via Micro Rendu USB with the same results. I have tried a couple different music player software (HQPlayer & JRiver) and both had the same results. I also tried to play DSD both direct and via DoP and neither would play. Anyone else having similar problems? What is the DSD flag 14 or 15 in the settings menu? I contacted Drop about a return or replacement but they told me to contact Topping. No more Drop for me.
CJH
 
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Perhaps the experts can help out here. Given the IMD graph below shows the lowest distortion at around -12dB, what would be the best volume setting? Let’s assume that the albums listened to have a DR rating of between 6 to 12. Maybe this is all in the inaudible range but no harm in tweaking for best possible performance IMO.

View attachment 30463
I had a similar thought. If you set the D70 volume to -12, then you would eliminate the rising distortion over 12. Lowering the volume would reduce dynamic range, but with a measured dynamic range of 124, it would reduce to 112...still above our best case hearing of 109 db.

Am I completely off base here?

Probably.
 

Pluto

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Anyone else having similar problems?
I have one of these units and it is stable and predictable playing from a Windows computer. I assume you have the appropriate driver installed? Does the playback of material at various sampling rates make any difference to the fault characteristics? Does the use of alternative USB ports make any difference?
The unit will play PCM for a few minutes then it plays noise at full volume until you stop playback
If stable playback consistently becomes high level noise, it is likely that you have a faulty unit. If the same behaviour occurs when connected to totally different hardware, the likelihood of a fault is higher still, I'm afraid.
 

CJH

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No speaker damage as yet. I have tried multiple USB sources (direct computer, MicroRendu, IsoRegen and various combinations) all had same problem. I have sent Topping an email ([email protected]) with an explanation of the problem a couple days ago with no reply as yet. If I can't get them to respond will have to start a Paypal transaction dispute.
CJH
 
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I had a similar thought. If you set the D70 volume to -12, then you would eliminate the rising distortion over 12. Lowering the volume would reduce dynamic range, but with a measured dynamic range of 124, it would reduce to 112...still above our best case hearing of 109 db.

Am I completely off base here?

Probably.
In my system I can only use with -12dB. In the DAC game and below -12 dB the sound is completely different.
The instruments sound shorter without depth.
This is not voodoo. -12dB and -10dB I can't yet distinguish in ABX, but -12dB and -0dB 10 out of 10. Can anyone explain this?
 

daftcombo

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I'm having some problems with volume on foobar 2000 and ASIO too.
With a Scarlet 2i4. Problems seems the same to me.
I'm talking about 5-7db.
I'm investigating.
I measued the 2i4 output with Foober with ASIO VS Wasapi and found less distortion with Wasapi. You can try but perhaps it is just my computer acting strange.
 
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In my system I can only use with -12dB. In the DAC game and below -12 dB the sound is completely different.
The instruments sound shorter without depth.
This is not voodoo. -12dB and -10dB I can't yet distinguish in ABX, but -12dB and -0dB 10 out of 10. Can anyone explain this?
This measurement is what brought up the discussion. Whether the distortion above -12 dBFS is audible is another topic, though. Do you have particularly acute hearing?

542D9212-BA9E-402B-8640-056F6F433EE3.png
 

leepc

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Hello,

I ordered the D70 and tested it for a few days, and compared it to my Gustard A20H dac, which also has dual AKM AK4497 chips, but uses dual-mono configuration. Both were used in a fully balanced config, with a Pro-Ject Head Box DS2 headphone amp, with the same AK4497 built-in filter called 'short sharp'.

I really wanted to try out the D70, thinking it could be an upgrade, but it wasn't. There was a little bit of increase in resolution with the D70, with slightly better separation between the instruments, but it definitely lacked general punch, bass was recessed (yet the A20H does not have artificially boosted bass), there was a bit of lack of treble extension and the soundstage sounded a tiny bit narrower. That was a big no for me. I could not enjoy the music as much. I'm not a believer in dac burn-in, so I'm going to send it back for a refund.
I also regret buying the D70.
I bought D70 because Grace m9xx(also $499) doesn't have XLR output. I thought D70 with XLR will drive Sennheiser HDVA 600 and Gustard H10 better than m9xx.
Unfortunately, I was wrong. Comparing to m9xx, D70 is lacking dynamic and definition at bass/mid.
D70 struggles to reproduce foot tapping and clapping on Eric Clapton Unplugged album on both my T1 and LCD2 headphones. It's not a volume matching issue. Its just D70 is lacking details and power comparing to m9xx.
 

zym1010

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I also regret buying the D70.
I bought D70 because Grace m9xx(also $499) doesn't have XLR output. I thought D70 with XLR will drive Sennheiser HDVA 600 and Gustard H10 better than m9xx.
Unfortunately, I was wrong. Comparing to m9xx, D70 is lacking dynamic and definition at bass/mid.
D70 struggles to reproduce foot tapping and clapping on Eric Clapton Unplugged album on both my T1 and LCD2 headphones. It's not a volume matching issue. Its just D70 is lacking details and power comparing to m9xx.
D70 user. Waiting for Sabaj D5, not sure if that will be an improvement or not.

But definitely D70 + JDS Labs Atom blows Apogee Groove miles away in terms of resolution.
 

typericey

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I guess the cliche "your mileage may vary" holds true in the case of the D70.

No regrets for me, coming from the D50. Aside from the subjective/perceived improvement in dynamics, soundstage and resolution, I am now able to enjoy the remote volume control and XLR connectivity. My D70 is now doing DAC/Pre duties directly connected to a power amp.

One nitpick: I noticed a very faint pop coming out of the speakers when changing the source even when on mute, specifically between optical and USB. The D50 is completely silent in this regard. @TP-Wong if you are reading this, perhaps a firmware update can fix this?

Based on Amir's measurements, the Sabaj D5 made the D70 eat dust. However, I personally have no view of Sabaj's provenance and track record with regard to reliability so with that my vote, as of today, still goes to the D70.

For now, we are comparing the D70 to the D5 as they practically have the same price tag and features, but there are speculations of a DX7s successor that will directly compete with the D5.
 
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Based on Amir's measurements, the Sabaj D5 made the D70 eat dust.
The way I read the review the d70 get smoked in terms of SINAD and for overall performance gets merely beaten...low noise floor and huge dynamic range and all that. But my newbie measurement interpretation skills could be off on that!

I guess the real question, though, is is that meatphoric dust audible? They are both in the "blue" category on the SINAD chart, and both extremely transparent and clean all told. But that's a whole 'nother can of worms and a different topic entirely. So... nevermind!;):D:D
 
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Veri

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Unfortunately, I was wrong. Comparing to m9xx, D70 is lacking dynamic and definition at bass/mid.
D70 struggles to reproduce foot tapping and clapping on Eric Clapton Unplugged album on both my T1 and LCD2 headphones. It's not a volume matching issue. Its just D70 is lacking details and power comparing to m9xx.
That would seem highly odd that any AK4490 implementation would sound so drastically different from a AK4497 implementation and that you prefer the first over the supposedly more transparent one. Very odd indeed.
 

maxxevv

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That would seem highly odd that any AK4490 implementation would sound so drastically different from a AK4497 implementation and that you prefer the first over the supposedly more transparent one. Very odd indeed.
Indeed. Sounds very much like a volume matching issue.

Quite frankly, unless measured at output with a Voltmeter, its not really " volume matched".

I would say its possible to have some differences but it shouldn't be a night and day difference for well performing DAC's. Either that or its the mind playing tricks with sighted comparisons as usual.
 
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