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Topping E30 DAC Review

Pdxwayne

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Hmm, what do you say about this comparison?
DAC volume matched at 2khz

Same song, same first bass beat. Zoomed way in to select start of first beat to the start of next beat. Same amount of time selected to create frequency analysis.

It would seems they don't behave the same in multiple area in term of energy level for many frequencies. ~440 HZ is one area of interest. Top of each picture is Gustard. Bottom of each picture is Topping.

Or is this all for naught again? Bad ADC that caused the differences?

first_bass_beat_gustard_vs_e30_1.PNG


first_bass_beat_gustard_vs_e30_freq_analysis.PNG
 
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Pdxwayne

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Your selection seems way too inaccurate, it's not even the same length. You'd have to select the exact same samples are far as possible.
You might get confused by the time start different. This is because recording started slightly off for each DAC. If you deduct the end time from the first time selected for the freq analysis for each DAC, you should come to the same length: 461ms.
 

solderdude

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Hmm, what do you say about this comparison?
DAC volume matched at 2khz

Same song, same first bass beat. Zoomed way in to select start of first beat to the start of next beat. Same amount of time selected to create frequency analysis.

It would seems they don't behave the same in multiple area in term of energy level for many frequencies. ~440 HZ is one area of interest. Top of each picture is Gustard. Bottom of each picture is Topping.

Or is this all for naught again? Bad ADC that caused the differences?

View attachment 112426

View attachment 112427
When you are venturing in this type of measurements perhaps it is time not to wing it using UCA202 but to buy something more decent/reliable.

You are measuring micrometers with an ordinary ruler.

Try @pkane his nulling software. That is way more suited for these kinds of tests AND lets you listen to the differences as well. You can even post that and have some objective evidence.
 

Pdxwayne

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Can you share the files? You might also try some
White noise.
How many seconds can I legally share for a song? Thanks!

Edit: I will repeat the recording process for same song a few times first. Don't want to waste people's time if indeed my uca202 is the problem.
 
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Pdxwayne

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When you are venturing in this type of measurements perhaps it is time not to wing it using UCA202 but to buy something more decent/reliable.

You are measuring micrometers with an ordinary ruler.

Try @pkane his nulling software. That is way more suited for these kinds of tests AND lets you listen to the differences as well. You can even post that and have some objective evidence.
Thanks! Yeah, my worry is the UCA202. I will try record same song a few times for one dac and see if it is consistent or not.
 

Pdxwayne

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@voodooless and @solderdude, I figured out why such big different. Human error. :facepalm:
I was measuring left channel of x16 and compared to right channel of E30.

Once I switched to left channel of E30, the chart look the same and have similar dB at multiple frequencies I checked. :). So for a single bass hit section, both DAC performed the same.

I then moved on to compare a section of the bagpipes song. Both DAC matched volume as before.

However, strangely, in this case E30 is slightly louder at all freq. Starting from about 0.2 dB louder at bass level to 0.5db louder at around 10 to 11khz area.

I am going to further investigate.
 

half_dog

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Yup. Just finished a 2Khz sawtooth measurements. Gustard x16 (left) and Topping E30 (right) look the same with 2Khz sawtooth playback.

View attachment 112232
Today I "discovered" REW beta version has a scope option and seems quite okay to check somethings like absolute polarity at real time, also to check how FIR influences overshooting on square or sawtooth waves and ringing. A high sample rate is desired to get a good resolution.
 

JohnYang1997

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Today I "discovered" REW beta version has a scope option and seems quite okay to check somethings like absolute polarity at real time, also to check how FIR influences overshooting on square or sawtooth waves and ringing. A high sample rate is desired to get a good resolution.
When I read the last sentence..What?
 

solderdude

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I was measuring left channel of x16 and compared to right channel of E30.
That didn't even cross my mind. Funny how one assumes that when one compares music one would always compare the same channel.
 

half_dog

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When I read the last sentence..What?
Oh, sorry. Sometimes I can't explain things very well or probably I'm wrong. At REW you can select the audio interface sample rate you wish to work with. Higher sample rates do mean more points for a time interval, no? Am I saying something stupid? Pls correct me. That's what I understand...
 

solderdude

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The scope is in there for quite some time and indeed only works in live mode.
You can't look at waveforms that have been captured.
I never use it (have a real scope that doesn't 'ring')
To check the phase one can also simply look at the phase in the FR plot (you can toggle it off and on)
 

JohnYang1997

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Oh, sorry. Sometimes I can't explain things very well or probably I'm wrong. At REW you can select the audio interface sample rate you wish to work with. Higher sample rates do mean more points for a time interval, no? Am I saying something stupid? Pls correct me. That's what I understand...
Alright. I understand now.
 

half_dog

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At the first measurements my interface was working with 44.1kHz and the ringings was exaggerated and a little of zooming REW would display the sample dots(I don't know the right term) , with 192kHz I was able to zoom much more and the waves seemed smoother...
 

half_dog

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The scope is in there for quite some time and indeed only works in live mode.
You can't look at waveforms that have been captured.
I never use it (have a real scope that doesn't 'ring')
To check the phase one can also simply look at the phase in the FR plot (you can toggle it off and on)
I already knew about the phase on FR but never have seen the scope option - never used a beta version before =P
 

VintageFlanker

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Had someone ordered E30 from french online store Masters of Audio? Are they
Never (ever) heard about them. Looks like they started business during 2020.

Honestly, I don't know. You may order from them to give it a chance and go for Audiophonics which is in place for 20 years.
 

Pdxwayne

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That didn't even cross my mind. Funny how one assumes that when one compares music one would always compare the same channel.
I did lots of measurements today.

I first check the consistency and accuracy of my UCA202 single channel measurements.
With E30 volume set at -8.5db, using filter 1, I measured 2Khz and 10Khz tone 3 times each. I confirmed I got matching db numbers for all 3 captures per freq.
E30 (-8.5db, filter 1, 2Khz tone generated at 0.8 out of 1 in Audacity): 0.9db
E30 (-8.5db, filter 1, 10Khz tone generated at 0.8 out of 1 in Audacity):0.8db
There is a drop of 0.1db between 2Khz and 10Khz.

I then checked E30 measurements by Johnyoung89 from Topping. Indeed there is a slight drop in dB for filter 1 in 10Khz. Not exactly 0.1 db, but Audacity can only show 0.1db increment.
topping_e30_all_filters_from_johnyoung.png


Now that I established my UCA202 can accurately and consistently do single tone measurements, I checked Gustard x16 measurements next.

I have previously established that E30 has higher output than X16, thus I measured x16 at -8db, using same test files.

Gustard X16, -8db, filter 1:
2KHz: 0.7db, 10Khz 0.4db

Gustard X16, -8db, filter 2:
2KHz: 0.6db, 10Khz 0.4db

Gustard X16, -8db, filter 3:
2KHz: 0.7db, 10Khz 0.4db

So, it looks like X16 drop from 2Khz to 10Khz is either 0.2 or 0.3db.

E30 has a drop of 0.1db with filter 1 at around 10Khz.
Gustard X16 (I was using filter 3) has a drop of 0.3 db at around 10Khz.

The question is: Can one sense such small difference of 0.2db between DAC at 10Khz? How about more and more db differences at freq higher than 10Khz?
 
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