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Topping L30 II Review (Headphone Amp)

Rate this headphone amplifier:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 6 2.3%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 7 2.7%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther

    Votes: 20 7.6%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 231 87.5%

  • Total voters
    264

Miiksuli

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L30II is good for >300ohm loads in high gain, no clipping at all, but with lower impedance it can't provide too much current power (which is ok for budget amp's)
Did you try gaming too? Apex Legends happens when someone is shooting me and Tower of Fantasy when opening the menu. But when listening to music it just works and works. No clipping. I have also tried to increase buffer size if it helps but without success. What is your DAC and speaker amp?

I have modified the DX7 Pro. I use Burson's V6 Classic opamps. I also have another unmodified DX7 Pro. I may try that if the DAC is a problem.
 

tlr125

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Did you try gaming too? Apex Legends happens when someone is shooting me and Tower of Fantasy when opening the menu. But when listening to music it just works and works. No clipping. I have also tried to increase buffer size if it helps but without success. What is your DAC and speaker amp?
this is not the AMP (L30) fault, it's just an amp with analogue inputs, there is no diff between gaming and music app's for an AMP(!!!), i have Asus Xonar STX connected to L30II and have ZERO problems while gaming, no clipping at all, but i'm using headphones instead of speakers
 

maverickronin

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Did you try gaming too? Apex Legends happens when someone is shooting me and Tower of Fantasy when opening the menu. But when listening to music it just works and works. No clipping. I have also tried to increase buffer size if it helps but without success. What is your DAC and speaker amp?

I have modified the DX7 Pro. I use Burson's V6 Classic opamps. I also have another unmodified DX7 Pro. I may try that if the DAC is a problem.

That problem isn't the amplifier. It's a pure analog system that only amplifies the signal it's fed.

It's probably an issue with DPC latency or the DAC itself. You also mentioned buffer size, which would only be an option in the Topping driver. I would make sure the driver up to date and if it already is then just uninstall it and run the DAC in class compliant mode.
 

Miiksuli

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It could be a latency issue. I tried DX7 Pro with cable TV and it stopped the sound every two seconds but then watching Netflix it just worked fine. Could be glitchy buggy DX7 Pro. I need to test it with different sources if it goes away.
 

Jimster480

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It could be a latency issue. I tried DX7 Pro with cable TV and it stopped the sound every two seconds but then watching Netflix it just worked fine. Could be glitchy buggy DX7 Pro. I need to test it with different sources if it goes away.
Did you test with the unmodified one? Because the Burson opamps do nothing but cause problems. You should never use them in any product. They are worse than TI opAmps and have voltage and load mismatch which can cause these problems.
They try to boost voltage more to make a perceived difference in quality. However it's typically only changing output voltage. Which is also what leads to protection kicking in.
I played tons of games for years with my DX7 and there has never been a problem.
 

Miiksuli

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Did you test with the unmodified one? Because the Burson opamps do nothing but cause problems. You should never use them in any product. They are worse than TI opAmps and have voltage and load mismatch which can cause these problems.
They try to boost voltage more to make a perceived difference in quality. However it's typically only changing output voltage. Which is also what leads to protection kicking in.
I played tons of games for years with my DX7 and there has never been a problem.
I just tested. It has exactly the same symptoms. I hear a click sound from the L30 II and then the audio stops for half a second. But only when gaming. Even I have music in the background. I didn't have any problems in the past with the DX7 Pro with PC. I just use line output to the headphone amp then the headphone stops working. Only when using the optical cable on the TV does it not work properly.

Edit. Finally I found cause for this. Probably it's the stereo amp. Maybe too much current? I lowered DX7 Pro output signal -8 dB then it started to work properly. Still gain is 8.5 dB more than medium.
 
Last edited:

Jimster480

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I just tested. It has exactly the same symptoms. I hear a click sound from the L30 II and then the audio stops for half a second. But only when gaming. Even I have music in the background. I didn't have any problems in the past with the DX7 Pro with PC. I just use line output to the headphone amp then the headphone stops working. Only when using the optical cable on the TV does it not work properly.

Edit. Finally I found cause for this. Probably it's the stereo amp. Maybe too much current? I lowered DX7 Pro output signal -8 dB then it started to work properly. Still gain is 8.5 dB more than medium.
I'm glad you figured it out. This is what I was saying. Too much current.
 

Miiksuli

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I'm glad you figured it out. This is what I was saying. Too much current.
I had to lower it even -4 dB more. It was still doing it rarely. But it's only when gaming. When listening to music I can turn it just up to 0 dB. Better solution than reach my hand to the gain switch.
 

Jimster480

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I had to lower it even -4 dB more. It was still doing it rarely. But it's only when gaming. When listening to music I can turn it just up to 0 dB. Better solution than reach my hand to the gain switch.
You should measure the output level with a multimeter to see the voltage you are outputting with to clip.
 

Miiksuli

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You should measure the output level with a multimeter to see the voltage you are outputting with to clip.
Peaked over 5V. I think I saw even over 6V. But -12 dB it's around 1.5V. Medium gain is 0.9V or less. I got same readings when listening bass heavy music but without clipping.
 
Last edited:

Roland68

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I'm not driving HP directly. I use headphone output for the stereo amp. Medium gain works perfectly even at 100% volume. Too bad because it rocked very well but sound started to clip when gaming. If I listen to music it works fine but gaming has different sounds that will make it clip and I hear a click sound from the L30 II.
Do I understand this in the right manner? Do you connect the headphone output of the Topping L30 II to one of the component inputs or to the pre-in of the X7 KT88 with an input impedance of 100kΩ?
 

AndreaT

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I received mine today. Fit'n finish excellent, impeccable RCA/HP slots, impeccable play of CD source (Marantz SACD SA8001, old but good). Will test more w newer DACs etc...For now, I am going back to listen to Music, the best acknowledgement of truly high quality and enjoyable addition to my modest hardware collection.
 

raif71

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I tested mine yesterday. Tested it with hd600, hd6xx and Sundara. Off the bat, if I remembered how I set my L30 volume levels, I would say the L30II gave me the same volume level and I get same headroom from the 2 amps using those headphones. Overall pleased with the sound but headroom wise, I'm a bit puzzled. I'm expecting more from the L30II.

Edit: Using E30 DAC (the AKM version)
 
Last edited:

tlr125

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Off the bat, if I remembered how I set my L30 volume levels, I would say the L30II gave me the same volume level and I get same headroom from the 2 amps using those headphones.
did you tried to set both to max volume?
 

raif71

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did you tried to set both to max volume?
I maxed the volume @mid gain using the dsd track of beethoven 5th symphony by Carlos Kleiber on both amps and settled around 1 o'clock using high gain, again on both amps
 

staticV3

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Off the bat, if I remembered how I set my L30 volume levels, I would say the L30II gave me the same volume level
In Med gain, same knob position should give you the same volume (both have unity gain)
In High gain, same knob position should result in 7dB higher volume on the II (60% louder), unless Topping changed the pot.
 

raif71

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In Med gain, same knob position should give you the same volume (both have unity gain)
In High gain, same knob position should result in 7dB higher volume on the II (60% louder), unless Topping changed the pot.
In that case, I will double check the volume levels again @high gain, this time using a switcher to switch between amps...
 

Miiksuli

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Do I understand this in the right manner? Do you connect the headphone output of the Topping L30 II to one of the component inputs or to the pre-in of the X7 KT88 with an input impedance of 100kΩ?
No. Just the normal inputs. I haved tested pre-in. Should it be plugged to it?
 

Roland68

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No. Just the normal inputs. I haved tested pre-in. Should it be plugged to it?
You should connect the Topping L30 II's headphone output to any component inputs or pre.
The TPA6120a2 is a pure amplifier chip specially designed for headphones. The usual impedance for headphones is 16 - 600 ohms, with an input impedance of 100kΩ you are a little higher. Since Ti didn't intend the chip to be used in this way, this can lead to problems.
You are probably also clipping the input of your amp, since the voltage at the headphone output is well above the maximum input voltage of your amp. This is not only a disadvantage in terms of sound.

The question has already been asked. Have you ever used the preamp outputs of the Topping L30 II and what is the problem?
 

Miiksuli

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You should connect the Topping L30 II's headphone output to any component inputs or pre.
The TPA6120a2 is a pure amplifier chip specially designed for headphones. The usual impedance for headphones is 16 - 600 ohms, with an input impedance of 100kΩ you are a little higher. Since Ti didn't intend the chip to be used in this way, this can lead to problems.
You are probably also clipping the input of your amp, since the voltage at the headphone output is well above the maximum input voltage of your amp. This is not only a disadvantage in terms of sound.

The question has already been asked. Have you ever used the preamp outputs of the Topping L30 II and what is the problem?
I did test both outputs of the HP AMP. It started to clip and L30 II protection mode kicked in. Sound stops only when gaming and I guess it's some saturation of my tube amp or the L30 II.

I tested a moment ago pre-in and didn't like the sound. Bass was weak. I'll test later if it works better with games. It's annoying to use the volume knob because it's too far away from me.
 
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