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Topping PA3s Review (Desktop Amplifier)

wetowne

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Here's an acrylic rack with my E50 and PA3s. Sounds sublime with Klipsch Forte speakers. Plenty of power to fill a good size room. Imaging, soundstage and clarity is first rate.
 

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andrewskaterrr

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Here's an acrylic rack with my E50 and PA3s. Sounds sublime with Klipsch Forte speakers. Plenty of power to fill a good size room. Imaging, soundstage and clarity is first rate.
Can you send the name/link/screenshot of that one so I can find it? There’s 3 different sizes but they all look similar so it’s hard to tell
 

somebodyelse

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I went ahead and ordered the PA3S last night. I’d really like to find a small thin triple shelf that I could put my E30, L30, PA3S in that would get them off of each other. The L30 gets hot and makes the E30 hot, and I don’t really want to put the PA3S under them and make it even hotter. Anyone seen any small shelves besides that somewhat large clear one with tube legs?
I'd be tempted to make something like the one Quad did for the 34, FM4 and 306
f28162bb5f4049f98a5b5a86f61e2c1b--high-end-audio-audiophile.jpg

20210906-Quad_34-FM3-306_Rack-600x450.jpg
 

typericey

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Chiming in (late) to watch this thread. I have a PA3 and happy to see the new version jump way high in the SINAD leaderboard. In fact, for performance alone I don't see why anyone would go for an entry level Marantz, Onkyo or even NAD's 316 BEE instead.

Edit: Upon checking, the price locally is equivalent to US$200. Still sticking to my statement above.
 
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andrewskaterrr

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Chiming in (late) to watch this thread. I have a PA3 and happy to see the new version jump way high in the SINAD leaderboard. In fact, for performance alone I don't see why anyone would go for an entry level Marantz, Onkyo or even NAD's 316 BEE instead.

Edit: Upon checking, the price locally is equivalent to US$200. Still sticking to my statement above.
Well the NAD 316BEE is $450 and is a headphone amp as well with tone controls and multiple inputs. But for $450 you can get an E30, L30, PA3S (my setup) and add a $10 4in-1out RCA switch. Not a replacement for speaker power though if you need more.
 

bravomail

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Overall, I am happy to recommend the Topping PA3s amplifier. Welcome to the games Topping! :)
Thx for review, Amir!
I already have AIYIMA A07, so now looking for an amp with remote control and subwoofer out.
It is hard to run back and forth for movies dynamic sound...
 

Toku

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Thx for review, Amir!
I already have AIYIMA A07, so now looking for an amp with remote control and subwoofer out.
It is hard to run back and forth for movies dynamic sound...
I compared PA3s and A07, but the sound quality is different.
The models you want are as follows.
Sabaj A10a A20a, SMSL DA-8s, DA-9, SA300, SA400, AO200, Loxje A30, AIYIMA D03, D05
 

Toku

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Did you compare A10a with A20a and what is the essential difference?
Thanks.
The amplifiers using the MA12070 chip I purchased are PA3s, SA300, DA-9, AO200, A20a. I haven't bought the A10a because I bought three SA300s.
However, according to my research, the amplifier circuit of the A10a is almost the same as the SA300, and the sound quality does not change.
The sound quality of the SA300 and A20a is very different. I judge that the A20a is superior in all aspects such as the width of the sound stage, the depth of the sound, and the feeling of energy. Please check this difference in sound quality with your own ears.
 

ceausuc

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The amplifiers using the MA12070 chip I purchased are PA3s, SA300, DA-9, AO200, A20a. I haven't bought the A10a because I bought three SA300s.
However, according to my research, the amplifier circuit of the A10a is almost the same as the SA300, and the sound quality does not change.
The sound quality of the SA300 and A20a is very different. I judge that the A20a is superior in all aspects such as the width of the sound stage, the depth of the sound, and the feeling of energy. Please check this difference in sound quality with your own ears.

How do you find PA3s when compared to A20a?

I also consider A20a a good improvement over SA300 ( I think also that the treble is better defined )
 

Toku

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How do you find PA3s when compared to A20a?

I also consider A20a a good improvement over SA300 ( I think also that the treble is better defined )
I'm a pure technician, so I'm not good at expressing subtle differences in sound like audiophiles and music fans. My opinion is solely a comparison from electrical operation.

I think that the circuit of the amplifier part of both PA3s and A20a is a copy of ifineon's recommended circuit and is basically the same. The difference is the input section, the PA3s are analog volume and have no tone control. The A20a has electronic volume and tone control by NJW1194. And I don't use the AC adapter that came with the PA3s power supply. I am using a separately prepared industrial 26V 10A power supply.

When comparing the sound quality with the tone control of the A20a turned off, I feel that there is a slight difference in sound quality, but I judge that it is almost the same. However, this subtle difference may be felt by some people.
I tested it even at a loud volume that vibrates the room, but both drive the speaker unit firmly.

Differences will appear when using two amplifiers as power amplifiers with maximum input volume.
The PA3s remain completely silent, but the A20a starts to generate switching noise when the volume level is around -10, and is a little worrisome at the maximum -00. Also, in the case of PA3s, it is disadvantageous that the tone control cannot be used when playing at low volume such as at night. But it was good that the power supply voltage was set to 26V.
Then, when asked whether to choose PA3s or A20a, I choose PA3s. Because PA3s has a higher degree of electrical perfection. But when comparing PA3s and AO200, I choose AO200.
 

ModDIY

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Yes but on the other hand no noise with the A20a on the XLR inputs (just with RCA).
 

andrewskaterrr

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@JohnYang1997 I just got my PA3S. It has 2 different power cords with the same USA Plug. One is 250v 6A, other is 125v 7A, both 2Cx0.75mm^2. I know that it's just the copper wires, but do you know why they let you choose? I figure I'll use the 125v 7A just because, but I'm curious the logic.
 

ceausuc

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Differences will appear when using two amplifiers as power amplifiers with maximum input volume.
The PA3s remain completely silent, but the A20a starts to generate switching noise when the volume level is around -10, and is a little worrisome at the maximum -00. Also, in the case of PA3s, it is disadvantageous that the tone control cannot be used when playing at low volume such as at night. But it was good that the power supply voltage was set to 26V.
Then, when asked whether to choose PA3s or A20a, I choose PA3s. Because PA3s has a higher degree of electrical perfection. But when comparing PA3s and AO200, I choose AO200.

Thanks.
I tried also my A20a and the noise starts at ~ -5, indeed at -0 is annoying.
It is connected by a RCA, diy cable, not screened to naked Khadas TB.
Maybe it is also dependent on the environment? dac? sensitivity of the speakers?

I really wanted an amp with internal power supply, too many power bricks on the floor :) and I was very close to get AO200 but the price difference was almost 90$ and couldn't justify that...

People from diyaudio opened A20a and installed clip-on ferites on the wires that go from the amp board to the speaker terminals to improve the noise problem. I might try it one day :)
 
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