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Topping D10 Balanced Review (USB DAC)

amirm

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This is a review and detailed measurements of the new Topping D10 Balanced. It was sent to me by the company and costs US $139.

The D10 Balanced as the name implies, comes in my favorite USB DAC package with the same cute orange display:

Topping D10 Balanced Review Stereo USB DAC.jpg


Back panel is where the difference is:

Topping D10 Balanced Review back panel Stereo USB DAC.jpg


Balanced line outputs are provided using TRS (1/4 inch) jacks. These are quite common in professional world but not nearly so in consumer. Still, cables and adapters are pretty cheap and is a a small price to pay to get the benefits of balanced line output (main one being much higher immunity to ground loops).

Please note that as with the rest of the D10 family, the Toslink optical and Coax digital are outputs, not inputs! If you need them as inputs, you need to look elsewhere. Otherwise, these DACs can be used to provide digital out to other products that don't have USB input (e.g. an older DAC).

Topping D10 Balanced Measurements
You are all here to see how well it performs so let's start with our dashboard:

Topping D10B Measurements Balanced Stereo USB DAC.png


I must stay, I never get tired of starting the analyzer and seeing such superlative performance numbers pop up in front of me. The D10 Balanced lands in top 20 DACs out of some 350 tested:

Top 20 USB DAC Reviewed.png


Signal to noise ratio is excellent:

Topping D10B Dynamic Range Measurements Balanced Stereo USB DAC.png


As is linearity:
Topping D10B Linearity Measurements Balanced Stereo USB DAC.png


Jitter is as interference free as you can get it:

Topping D10B Jitter Measurements Balanced Stereo USB DAC.png


IMD test shows that the D10 Balanced is able to beat its older sibling, one of my old favorites, the Topping DX3 Pro:
Topping D10B IMD Distortion Measurements Balanced Stereo USB DAC.png


The DAC filter is a bit slower than I like but is typical:
Topping D10B Filter Measurements Balanced Stereo USB DAC.png


The attenuation is excellent though which in turn allows the D10 Balance to produce one of the best responses in THD+N versus frequency over 90 kHz bandwidth:

Topping D10B THD+N vs frequency Measurements Balanced Stereo USB DAC.png


Finally, multitone is clean and shows very low distortion levels:

Topping D10B Multitone Measurements Balanced Stereo USB DAC.png


Topping D10 Balanced Digital Output Measurements
I fed the unit the J-test jitter signal and measured the spectrum of what came out on Coax output:
Topping D10B Coax digital out Measurements Balanced Stereo USB DAC.png


As a reference, I left the old Topping D10 in there in blue. As you see, the D10 Balanced doesn't have the full spray of pulses that the D10 had. Its jitter is more concentrated around the main tone which is nicer as it has better chance of getting masked. In either case though, peak jitter values are just 10 picoseconds and lower so neither is a worry but there you are.

Conclusions
It is clear Topping is laser focused on best possible performance at every price point. And at the same time appreciates the importance of providing balanced outputs in desktop products where possibility of ground loops is quite high. Professionals would do well buying the D10 Balanced as well given its 4 volt output and ability to drive longer cables. And have the familiar 1/4 jacks for interfacing.

Do I need to say it? I am happy to recommend the Topping D10 Balanced. My favorite form factor DAC with its orange display is now balanced with superb performance. Yes, the cost is higher now but the world is different as well.

------------
As always, questions, comments, recommendations, etc. are welcome.

Appreciate any donations using: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/how-to-support-audio-science-review.8150/
 
Last edited:

yossarian

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Minor correction: "possibly of group loops is quite high" should be "possibility of ground loops is quite high" ?
 

Veri

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Thanks. Fixed.
Another, "IMD test shows that the D10 Balanced is able to beat its older sibling, one of my old favorites, the Topping D30 Pro:"
You probably mean the DX3 Pro ;)

Thanks for the review!! Awesome performance for such a budget DAC.
 

fordiebianco

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'higher immunity to group loops'= ground loops?

Apart from that, another hole in one from Topping. Congrats!
 

Lupin

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Thanks. Fixed.
Still says "group loops" in both introduction section and conclusion section.. :rolleyes:

These measurements shows once more that the whole DA conversion is a "solved" thing by now. One doesn't need to spend thousands or even hundreds of dollars anymore to get good clean and transparent DA conversion.
 
Last edited:

milosz

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In case anyone wonders what my avatar represents: It's a frame grab from a Dragnet 1967 TV episode ( https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0565600/ ) in which great character actor Vic Perrin plays someone convinced that gangsters from Jupiter are after him. I identify with his role.... He is perhaps best known for being the Control Voice in the wonderful TV series The Outer Limits: THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH YOUR TELEVISION SET & etc.
 

kukocz

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Really nice performance to value ratio.
@amirm any chance to publish SINAD vs Measured Level graph?

edit:
just noticed that @Rja4000 asked for the same :)
 
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