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Topping DM7 8-Channel DAC Review

Rate this DAC:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 6 2.1%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 15 5.3%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther

    Votes: 46 16.1%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 218 76.5%

  • Total voters
    285

amirm

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This is a review and detailed measurements of the Topping DM7 8-channel balanced USB DAC. It was sent to me by the company and costs US $599.

Topping DM7 8 channel DAC Review.jpg


The DM7 is simplicity in itself as you can tell from its rear terminals:
Top 20 best Multichannel 8 channel DAC back channel review.jpg


USB input is the only one provided which is just fine with me. And seems trigger support is becoming standard in Topping products which is nice.

1/4 connectors are used to save space so you need to get adapters for your XLR cables or better yet, XLR to 1/4 as I use.

EDIT: remote control is also provided.

I am not sure I understand the model numbering though. DM7?

Topping DM7 Measurements
I connected my analyzer to channels 1 and 2:
Topping DM7 8 channel DAC Measurements.png


Performance in channel 2 is excellent. Channel 1 is a hair worse so I tested the rest. Channel 8 also matched it but all the rest produced 120+ dB SINAD. So I gave it the benefit of the doubt that the average would be that of channel 2, placing DM7 in our top 20 rankings of lowest noise and distortion DACs:
Top 20 best Multichannel 8 channel DAC review.png


Note that the above is with reduced output of -2 dBFS. Performance gets better at full range:
Topping DM7 8 channel DAC THD vs level Measurements.png


Dynamic range is excellent as you would expect:
Topping DM7 8 channel DAC DNR Measurements.png


Multitone performance is well, excellent yet again:
Topping DM7 8 channel DAC Multitone Measurements.png

As is linearity:
Topping DM7 8 channel DAC Linearity Measurements.png


IMD distortion shows a hint of "ESS IMD Hump" in one channel but not int he other:
Topping DM7 8 channel DAC IMD Measurements.png


I was impressed by how clean the jitter spectrum was, nicely resolving the few tones at multiples of 250 Hz at 24 bit depth:
Topping DM7 8 channel DAC Jitter Measurements.png


Filter response is as you expect:
Topping DM7 8 channel DAC Filter Measurements.png


As expected, choice of filter has some effect in our wideband test but both are excellent results:
Topping DM7 8 channel DAC THD vs Frequency Measurements.png


Conclusions
I must say I was surprised when I saw Topping go into multichannel DAC domain. Not for any specific reason other than being so used to two channel products from them. This is a nice development especially at this performance and price. Execution is perfect as we expect from Topping. There is nothing whatsoever that I can remotely criticize.

It is my pleasure to recommend Topping DM7.

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

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SDC

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Trigger out nice. But no remote?
 

SDC

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OP
amirm

amirm

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Please excuse my ignorance but what or how would an 8 channel DAC be used?
In the simplest case is for multichannel music or movie playback (if you can decode the latter prior to sending it the DAC). Another application is building multi-way active speakers. Then you need 2 or more channels for each speaker.
 

Doodski

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Not much to see here, topping's nailed performance yet again. Nice that it's avaliable for a fair bit less than the Okto offering.
So boring in a good way ;)
But but but... Okto is made in Central Europe and has a good reputation for not breaking down from what I know.
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dartinbout

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Can the golfing panther be shown winning Augusta or just wear that ugly sport coat? This is an absolute win for my taste in audio equipment. I'm going to sell my Ebay'd Dac 8 Pro. Topping is with out peer as a product line.
 

kongwee

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For home studio, 2 pair of monitors, 1 pair for headphone, 1 spare. If it has a routing interface.
 

alex-z

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This is a superb product for those looking to do active crossovers on a PC, or decode 7.1 surround sound and run home theatre without an AV receiver. Other 8 channels DAC's cost drastically more, and/or perform worse.
 

Mario Sanchez

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But but but... Okto is made in central Europe and has a good reputation for not breaking down from what I know.
View attachment 217885
While I don't know for sure what the exact numbers are, I would like to point out that it's not the absolute number of faliures which should concern a prospective buyer, but chance of faliure.
I agree that there might be something going on in certain Topping products (notably early L30 units and PA5) which have repeated reports of failure under otherwise normal usage, but other Topping SKUs seem generallly fine in this regard, so I'm not sure what you're getting at here.
 

raif71

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Thanks for the review @amirm . Just wished this could come with hdmi in (instead of usb) and out as most multichannel sources like bluray players will use hdmi. Then the output of the dac would also be a single hdmi instead of 8 TRS. I suppose on the naming DM7, D for DAC, M for Multichannel and 7 (0-7 channels?). Perhaps there will be a Topping AM7 coming up ?
 

the shy

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While I don't know for sure what the exact numbers are, I would like to point out that it's not the absolute number of faliures which should concern a prospective buyer, but chance of faliure.
I agree that there might be something going on in certain Topping products (notably early L30 units and PA5) which have repeated reports of failure under otherwise normal usage, but other Topping SKUs seem generallly fine in this regard, so I'm not sure what you're getting at here.
hello how are you
 

Doodski

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While I don't know for sure what the exact numbers are, I would like to point out that it's not the absolute number of faliures which should concern a prospective buyer, but chance of faliure.
I agree that there might be something going on in certain Topping products (notably early L30 units and PA5) which have repeated reports of failure under otherwise normal usage, but other Topping SKUs seem generallly fine in this regard, so I'm not sure what you're getting at here.
I'm getting at the customer service experience as poor as it may be. I'm all about the experience and communications.
 

Ajax

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Please excuse my ignorance but what or how would an 8 channel DAC be used?
An example would be providing a signal to the Linkwitz Lx mini DIY two way speakers combined with a pair of subs, which will require 6 separate channels.


I have been procrastinating for a long time to build these as a retirement project, and initially thought I would need to combine something like 3 pairs of Topping D50s DACs with 3 pairs of stereo amps.

However, the DM7 combined with a Buckeye 6 channel amp, with say 2 x Hypex 252 modules for the tweeters and 4 x Hypex 502 modules for the woofers, would provide a simple and elegant solution and eliminate a lot of clutter. I have no excuses now.

Thanks again Amir for introducing us to such a large range of cost effective high performance gear. This site is exactly what our hobby needs.
 

Mario Sanchez

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I'm getting at the customer service experience as poor as it may be. I'm all about the experience and communications.
I guess RMAs and other service requests with an overseas manufacturer could get frustrating here in Canada...I haven't had the (mis)fortune to experience that though, having only been here a couple months. You have a point.
 

dwkdnvr

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Interesting product. Impeccable performance. Good fit if you are exclusively using PC sources.

Compared to the similarly priced but slightly lower performaing Motu Ultralite Mk5 you're giving up inputs and expandability, but you do get global volume which is a big advantage.

Worth thinking about to be sure. Need to think about the best value balanced amp setup. Hypex is great, but maybe a bit pricier than would be ideal.
 
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