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Topping D50 III Balanced DAC with EQ Review

Rate this DAC:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 4 1.3%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 9 2.8%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 44 13.8%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 261 82.1%

  • Total voters
    318

GaryH

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Ha, well that's true re the 5Hz offset, that can be quite easily seen when I look now, I only gave it a quick scan last time! Yes, I agree, the Topping is slightly off for some reason - and according to the post you linked then that sounds like something akin to "rounding errors" if I understand his post correctly?
Yeah seems like that's that's their theory for the Topping's inaccurate PEQ.

@GaryH amir didn't have any issues with his peq tests!
Linear distortion (i.e. frequency response accuracy, what really matters) with PEQ engaged wasn't examined in this review, only nonlinear distortion / noise.
 

Rja4000

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That's in comparison to RME implementation. That assumes that RME implementation is rock solid, is it safe to make that assumption? Also is the measurement procedure bonafide & not open to any errors? It's true though that we see differences in the graph, not massive but there.

EDIT: assuming it's an error in Topping, do we know what is causing the error, as in with more filters combined & more complex filters combined are we likely to see increased error or is that not a safe assumption? I wonder what Topping have to say about this.
This was just an attempt to check which of the various Parametric EQ formula the Topping is using.
Here, we see pretty good match with the RME, which is a pretty "common" parametric EQ implementation.
(There is no "right" or "wrong" EQ Algorithm. Just different ones.)

That just means that any recommended EQ setting for a headphones, as an example, that works with the RME may be used with the Topping.
 

Stereodude

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Aren't the balanced output jacks on the D50 III a little close together to get TRS plugs like Neutrik NP3X or other fat TRS plugs into them? My estimate from the pictures (comparing the size of the opening to their spacing) is that the TRS jacks have a pitch of ~13.5mm. The Neutrik NP3X is 14.5mm in diameter. Some of the Amphenol TRS jacks are even bigger.
 

Labjr

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Aren't the balanced output jacks on the D50 III a little close together to get TRS plugs like Neutrik NP3X or other fat TRS plugs into them? My estimate from the pictures (comparing the size of the opening to their spacing) is that the TRS jacks have a pitch of ~13.5mm. The Neutrik NP3X is 14.5mm in diameter. Some of the Amphenol TRS jacks are even bigger.

According to my estimation, the Neutrik plugs may clear it by≈1mm. It's still too close. Perhaps someone should try them.
 
Last edited:

Stereodude

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According to my estimation, the Neutrik plugs may clear it by≈1mm. It's still too close. Perhaps someone should try them.

That would be a useful data point.

I'm thinking to get a D50 III and a A50 III and was looking at the interconnect situation before buying. Right now I'm thinking to make my own cables using the Neutrik Rean NYS228BG TRS plugs which are only 12.5mm in diameter because I'm concerned about the fit with fatter plugs and most pre-made cables (which generally tend to have more slender plugs) are way too long to connect the two.
 

Rja4000

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I think I have a cable with Neutrik TRS plugs somewhere. I'll check and if that's the case, I'll give it a try.

What I know for sure is that you can't connect 2 Neutrik NA3MP side by side.
But that's quite normal, of course.
 

Labjr

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I don't like the quality of Rean connectors. It's their value line.
 

zdykstra

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17148321377675497937371310394846.jpg


Those are a pair of Neutrik NP3X-B terminated TRS cables. They fit, with out a ton of room, but with out a fight.
 

Stereodude

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View attachment 367541

Those are a pair of Neutrik NP3X-B terminated TRS cables. They fit, with out a ton of room, but with out a fight.

Thanks for posting the picture of the Neutrik connectors in the D50 III. It looks like they're basically touching each other. Can you easily slide a piece of paper between them or are they tight?
 

zdykstra

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Thanks for posting the picture of the Neutrik connectors in the D50 III. It looks like they're basically touching each other. Can you easily slide a piece of paper between them or are they tight?
They're touching each other by the barest of degrees. There's no side pressure on the connectors or TRS jacks. Paper slides in just fine - I don't think there's any cause for concern here.
 

Robbo99999

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This was just an attempt to check which of the various Parametric EQ formula the Topping is using.
Here, we see pretty good match with the RME, which is a pretty "common" parametric EQ implementation.
(There is no "right" or "wrong" EQ Algorithm. Just different ones.)

That just means that any recommended EQ setting for a headphones, as an example, that works with the RME may be used with the Topping.
We've already established the peak was in the wrong place for one of the Topping filters.
 

Bleib

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The manual claims the display is OLED, but it's not, it's LCD. Not that I mind but I would prefer it would completely turn off with the auto function.
 

Stereodude

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Can the D50 III be powered with a USB-C power supply and a C to C cable? Meaning it has the 2 resistors to turn on the output of the supply?

Or, does it need an A to C cable?
 

SloPoke

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Can the D50 III be powered with a USB-C power supply and a C to C cable? Meaning it has the 2 resistors to turn on the output of the supply?

Or, does it need an A to C cable?

Yes, the D50 III can be powered USB-C power supply and a C to C cable.

There are two USB-C inputs, one labeled "USB-C" and the other "Power".

The machine can be powered in 3 different combinations:

- USB power supply plugged into the USB-C "Power" on back of the D50 III.

- A source plugged into the USB-C input will power the machine, even with no USB-C plugged into the "Power" USB-C. For example, my iPhone 15 Pro will power the D50 III with no USB-C Power supply.

- a source plugged into USB-C and concurrently a USB-C fcable rom a charger plugged into the USB-C Power input. Adding the 2nd USB-C for power would, I'm guessing, reduce battery drain on a source like an iPhone.

I don't know if the dac measures any better or exactly the same no matter the power scenario. No sonic differences that I have heard. (?)
 

ssn22

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So what did we see? Does a company break up complete sets of products? Isn’t the A50 and D50 a complete set of products? What are some companies worried about? Could it be that the data I measured were not perfect enough, so I didn’t dare to release them?
 
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