• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required. There are daily reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

Topping E50 L50 stack questions

Mike710

Active Member
Joined
Nov 12, 2023
Messages
122
Likes
73
Location
Airborne
Hi all!

I recently took the plunge on Amazon (Black Friday sale) and bought the E50 and L50 but I have some tech doubts as follows...

My sound source will be FLAC files from my PC, so the E50 will be fed via USB. Power for now will also be via USB but with wall adapter (5v) as with smartphones. I plan to get the iFi iPower 2 PSU later on. System will be PC --> E50 --> L50 --> Aiyima A07 Max /stereo to a pair of Polk XT15´s. I will be using some DIY TRS balanced cables for both E50 and L50.

- So the first question would be, the E50 balanced TRS out should go to the balanced TRS In of the L50, and then the RCA passthrough of the L50 to the RCA In of the A07 Max?

- Second, I have not seen the ASIO app (If there Is one) yet for the E50, but what resolution should I set It to, or Is this automatic? On my DAW which Is on another PC, I need to select the resolution manually depending on how I want to record/playback using the Motu M2, but here I have no Idea how It works until I Install the driver. Most likely It will show up as a sound card (E50) and be selectable In a pulldown window or something like that for W10.

- I see there´s a firmware tool download over at the Topping site, will this tool show me what version firmware I have In my current unit? Is there any Instructions as to how to update the firmware, like do you need the unit turned on? Or any other procedure you need to strictly follow?

So far this Is what comes to mind.

I don´t have the units here yet, tomorrow arrives the L50, and the E50 arrives Tuesday. Any pointers I should know and/or that I have missed?

Thank you,

Mike
 

Berwhale

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Aug 29, 2019
Messages
3,874
Likes
4,838
Location
UK
Firstly, a phone charger will work perfectly well with the E50. You don't need an expensive 'hi-fi' PSU to power it.

Secondly, I think you are going to be disappointed. According to the Topping website, the TRS input is passed though to the TRS output and the RCA input is passed through to the RCA output. i.e. the TRS input is not passed through to the RCA output (or vice versa).

1700433373644.png


So you are going to have to connect A07 to the E50 using RCA and then switch between the outputs on the E50 or have them both enabled at once...

1700433554696.png


Lastly, the Topping ASIO drivers are the same for all their DACs, you get a little control app that looks like this...

1700433666351.png


However, there's not really any benefit to using ASIO for music playback and it makes it more difficult to use EqualizerAPO to EQ your headphones and speakers. It is possible to get the ASIO driver working with EAPO if you use something like Voicemeeter Banana, but it's really not worth the faff.

On the other hand, installing the Topping ASIO driver does give you access to the full range on bit depths/sample rates in Windows. I have mine set to 32bit, 96Khz...

1700434079491.png
 
OP
Mike710

Mike710

Active Member
Joined
Nov 12, 2023
Messages
122
Likes
73
Location
Airborne
Firstly, a phone charger will work perfectly well with the E50. You don't need an expensive 'hi-fi' PSU to power it.

Secondly, I think you are going to be disappointed. According to the Topping website, the TRS input is passed though to the TRS output and the RCA input is passed through to the RCA output. i.e. the TRS input is not passed through to the RCA output (or vice versa).

View attachment 327897

So you are going to have to connect A07 to the E50 using RCA and then switch between the outputs on the E50 or have them both enabled at once...

View attachment 327899

Lastly, the Topping ASIO drivers are the same for all their DACs, you get a little control app that looks like this...

View attachment 327900

However, there's not really any benefit to using ASIO for music playback and it makes it more difficult to use EqualizerAPO to EQ your headphones and speakers. It is possible to get the ASIO driver working with EAPO if you use something like Voicemeeter Banana, but it's really not worth the faff.

On the other hand, installing the Topping ASIO driver does give you access to the full range on bit depths/sample rates in Windows. I have mine set to 32bit, 96Khz...

View attachment 327902
Hi and thank you for you´re reply and help!

Ok, no expensive PSU!

As for the I/O´s, well I´ll just have to live with RCA for now. Thinking of gifting the lady a stack these holidays, although she Is not as demanding with her ears so will see what I do amp wise. Might give her the A07 Max and get something else.

For the ASIO, yeah you´re right, but as long as the driver Is "stable" It really Is not that much of burden to have one Installed.

I´ll try you´re bit/sample settings, and thank you for those apps (EQ/Banana), those look useful Indeed. Specially for my MP5´s which are studio flat monitors If I don´t want to go through my DAW.

Again, thank you for answering all my questions.

Cheers,

Mike
 
OP
Mike710

Mike710

Active Member
Joined
Nov 12, 2023
Messages
122
Likes
73
Location
Airborne
Hi all,

Finally got to setting everything up and working although I am not using the stack with my Aiyima A07 Max yet. I still have to figure out (debate myself) where I am going to place my speakers as this Is going to be a desktop set-up. Pretty happy with how It all sounds although my headphones (AKG K171 Studio) are not really meant for listening and that´s not what I bought them for. I am looking for some dedicated headphones as the HD 560s which for now fit my budget.

I do have a couple of questions now that It´s all working...

- What filter do you use? I have been using the F1, I find I like It better then F3.

- For gain staging, I see that you can also use the gain (volume) of the E50, aswell as the volume of the L50. How do you all go about setting you´re volume?

Cheers,

Mike
 

Berwhale

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Aug 29, 2019
Messages
3,874
Likes
4,838
Location
UK
F1 is the most 'correct' filter...

index.php


You are going to end up with 4 places to control volume...

1. PC
2. E50 DAC
3. L50 HP Amp
4. A07 Max

I would worry less about gain structure and more about useability. If it was me, at my desk, i.e. not needing remote volume, I would set...

1. PC to 100%
2. E50 to 100% (i.e. DAC Mode)
3. L50 to comfortable listening volume - passthrough to amp will be 100%.
4. A07 to comfortable listening volume
 
OP
Mike710

Mike710

Active Member
Joined
Nov 12, 2023
Messages
122
Likes
73
Location
Airborne
F1 is the most 'correct' filter...

index.php


You are going to end up with 4 places to control volume...

1. PC
2. E50 DAC
3. L50 HP Amp
4. A07 Max

I would worry less about gain structure and more about useability. If it was me, at my desk, i.e. not needing remote volume, I would set...

1. PC to 100%
2. E50 to 100% (i.e. DAC Mode)
3. L50 to comfortable listening volume - passthrough to amp will be 100%.
4. A07 to comfortable listening volume
Yes that makes total sense, thank you @Berwhale.

Cheers!
 

formdissolve

Senior Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Jul 19, 2019
Messages
341
Likes
293
Location
USA
Note that if your specific music player allows ASIO or WASAPI, I would use those since they bypass the Windows audio engine (especially ASIO). The ASIO driver also allows for native DSD playback if that's a thing you care about.

I have this same stack and also have E50 set to DAC mode with no volume control, L50 to low gain for normal use and medium if I want to blow ears with certain tracks.
 

Berwhale

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Aug 29, 2019
Messages
3,874
Likes
4,838
Location
UK
Note that if your specific music player allows ASIO or WASAPI, I would use those since they bypass the Windows audio engine (especially ASIO).

Personally, I don't think this is worth the time or inconvenience, especially if the PC in question is for general use, rather than a dedicated source for music.

There is a fair bit of debate and some recommendations for setup on this thread...

 

formdissolve

Senior Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Jul 19, 2019
Messages
341
Likes
293
Location
USA
Yes I have seen that, but to be honest, it seamlessly switches between them if you pause/stop. If you route everything through Windows (direct sound instead of WASAPI) it resamples everything which is something I'd like to avoid, especially since DACs upscale internally already. Besides, if you install the ASIO driver from Topping, everything is handled by that easily. Unless you use software DSP outside of a music player?

For example I have Roon set to ASIO and if I pause, it cuts the stream and I can go to YouTube in Chrome or whatever and it will then play through that. I've never had an issue.
 
Last edited:

Berwhale

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Aug 29, 2019
Messages
3,874
Likes
4,838
Location
UK
Unless you use software DSP outside of a music player?

Exactly, I use eAPO with PEACE to apply PEQ to both my monitors and various headphones. The benefits of systemwide PEQ far outweigh any concerns I may have about the Windows audio stack.

A couple of years ago, I got IKMultimedia ARC3 working for systemwide PEQ by plumbing it into Voicemeeter Banana which then drove my DAC via ASIO. However, I found this to be quite a fragile setup e.g. it was often broken by things like Windows updates and had to be setup again.
 
Top Bottom