• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). Come here to have fun, be ready to be teased and not take online life too seriously. We now measure and review equipment for free! Click here for details.

Topping PA3s Review (Desktop Amplifier)

restorer-john

Master Contributor
Joined
Mar 1, 2018
Messages
7,879
Likes
21,022
Location
Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
I received the PA3s and have been testing it for 36 hours in a row, but I can't hear any hiss noise when I put my ears on the speakers.
SMSL AO200, DA-9, SA300, SAbaj A20a, AIYMA A07 also have a low level but can be heard clearly.

You clearly like collecting these funny little amplifiers. So that's 6 and counting? :)
 

jst

Active Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2021
Messages
134
Likes
36
I received the PA3s and have been testing it for 36 hours in a row, but I can't hear any hiss noise when I put my ears on the speakers.
SMSL AO200, DA-9, SA300, SAbaj A20a, AIYMA A07 also have a low level but can be heard clearly.
But with PA3s, I can't really hear hiss noise no matter how many times I check it.
Wow, the last time I heard a hiss coming out from any audio source was from SoundBlaster 16 and multimedia speakers for pc. But now that you mentioned it, I put my ears on my Sony speakers and YES I HEARD A HISS (from the tweeter) using Aiyima A07, not really affecting audio coming out but it IS there.

I wonder if that's the adapter or the amp itself that's causing it, and PA3s amp is kinda low wattage that's probably an advantage to not producing a hiss ?
 

Toku

Major Contributor
Joined
Apr 4, 2018
Messages
1,312
Likes
1,171
Location
Japan
You clearly like collecting these funny little amplifiers. So that's 6 and counting? :)
I used to be a user of major products such as Pioneer, ONKYO, YAMAHA, DENON, and SONY, but after meeting TEAC's AX501 amp, I fell in love with class D amps.
I was particularly attracted to Chinese amplifier products that are cheap and have good sound quality, and I have purchased and tested more than 40 types of products so far. Right now I'm not interested in expensive products at all, and I've reported test results in various places. Of course, we also give feedback to the manufacturer. ASR's amirm provides electrical measurement data, but you have to purchase and check the actual operation status of the product yourself. In particular, DAC-related products rarely match the actual operation with the measured data.
I used to design equipment related to TV broadcasting stations at a Japanese manufacturer, so even now, due to the customs of the time, even cheap products are scrutinized.

Wow, the last time I heard a hiss coming out from any audio source was from SoundBlaster 16 and multimedia speakers for pc. But now that you mentioned it, I put my ears on my Sony speakers and YES I HEARD A HISS (from the tweeter) using Aiyima A07, not really affecting audio coming out but it IS there.

I wonder if that's the adapter or the amp itself that's causing it, and PA3s amp is kinda low wattage that's probably an advantage to not producing a hiss ?
The reason why the hiss noise of PA3s is much smaller than that of DA-9 SA300 AO200 A20a is probably related to the low amplifier gain.
 

tonycollinet

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 4, 2021
Messages
649
Likes
895
Welcome to asr. To answer your question , no we only listen to oscilloscopes and analyzers round here.
Not strictly true. Amirm often includes a listening impression in his reviews. Not in this case though.
 
OP
amirm

amirm

Founder/Admin
Staff Member
CFO (Chief Fun Officer)
Joined
Feb 13, 2016
Messages
35,382
Likes
135,861
Location
Seattle Area
I like to listen to these amps but it was late at night and didn't want to disturb the family. And now have moved on to testing other gear....
 

DSJR

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Joined
Jan 27, 2020
Messages
950
Likes
1,128
Location
Suffolk Coastal, UK
As far as I know Creek rised its prises as well, seems to me EU market is hugely uncompetitive for audio manufacturing.
I think the prices on some of the Hypex and Purifi builds are ok, BUT... these don't sell through a conventional dealer base as far as I'm aware.

UK Dealer margins on electronics have increased a bit since my day and it appears 50% is now the target now as against '30 less 5' as it was in the 70's and 80's typically (one or two brands offered better deals back then depending on volume sold, thereby all but stifling fair comparisons if said dealer had a sales target to meet. Mass market speakers almost always offered better dealer markups since the 80's but electronics took a bit longer to catch up I believe.
 

pma

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Feb 23, 2019
Messages
2,378
Likes
4,378
Location
Prague
Also, apparently the Infineon chip used in this amp (along with the SMSL SA300, DA-9 and AO200, among others) can be used without an output filter for very short speaker cable runs. I believe SMSL omits the output filter.

You are most probably right.

MA12070_appcirc.png


This is said in evaluation board manual:

1633440546514.png
 
Last edited:

pma

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Feb 23, 2019
Messages
2,378
Likes
4,378
Location
Prague
If that was the case wouldn't we see bigger peaks in the out of band switching noise plot?
Yes if you measured the spectrum with an instrument with BW at least 10MHz or better 100MHz and not with LF AP that ended at 1.2 MHz. Check the MA12070 datasheet which frequency appears at the output depending on mode of operation.
And AP has had no HF input filter in the path?
 

somebodyelse

Major Contributor
Joined
Dec 5, 2018
Messages
2,313
Likes
1,718
@pma thanks for the clarification. I also see in the datasheet (and the application note it refers to) Infineon are suggesting LC output filters will likely be required to pass radiated emissions tests with anything but very short speaker cables (~60-80cm twisted.)
 

Yaiba

Member
Joined
Mar 18, 2021
Messages
7
Likes
9
I just curious that PA3s have enough power for JBL A130 or control-x or not?

Now I used smsl DA-9 with JBL A130 and AIYIMA07 with JBL control-X.
Should I waiting for the class AB with more power that @JohnYang1997 mentioned that topping will release later?
 

milan616

Active Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Feb 25, 2021
Messages
135
Likes
104
I just curious that PA3s have enough power for JBL A130 or control-x or not?

Any amp has enough power for any speaker, just not always at the volume+distance you want. Plug in the values into the amp calculator and see if the measured output from the review meets your needs.
 

somebodyelse

Major Contributor
Joined
Dec 5, 2018
Messages
2,313
Likes
1,718
The infineon evaluation board isn't what's been measured. We are talking Topping PA3s here.
What's the evaluation board got to do with it? The last plot in the review is the out of band switching noise for the PA3s. @pma has pointed out why it might not be telling the whole story.
 

tonycollinet

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 4, 2021
Messages
649
Likes
895
What's the evaluation board got to do with it? The last plot in the review is the out of band switching noise for the PA3s. @pma has pointed out why it might not be telling the whole story.
And he quoted from the manual of the evaluation board stating that it had no output filter. You and vini darko took the bait, and asked if that was the case wouldn't we see higher peaks etc etc.

Well perhaps you would if the measurements were of an evaluation board without output filter.
 
Last edited:

Vini darko

Major Contributor
Joined
Jun 1, 2020
Messages
1,859
Likes
2,567
Location
Dorset England
And he quoted from the manual of the evaluation board statign that it had no output filter. You and vini darko took the bait, and asked if that was the case wouldn't we see higher peaks etc etc.

Well perhaps you would if the measuremnts were of an evaluation board without output filter.
I didn't ask a question. I made a statment.
 

tonycollinet

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 4, 2021
Messages
649
Likes
895
Yes - that the speakers will be seeing full power switching frequency. Which again - is the case for the eval board, but this thread is about the topping amp. Now maybe you didn't intend your statement to be about the topping - but without making that clear, someone else might easily read that statement and think it applies to the topping.

So I'm making it clear.
 

Vini darko

Major Contributor
Joined
Jun 1, 2020
Messages
1,859
Likes
2,567
Location
Dorset England
Yes - that the speakers will be seeing full power switching frequency. Which again - is the case for the eval board, but this thread is about the topping amp. Now maybe you didn't intend your statement to be about the topping - but without making that clear, someone else might easily read that statement and think it applies to the topping.

So I'm making it clear.
Yeah I wasn't refering to the pa3s just the concept of no filter.
 
Top Bottom