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Topping PA3s Review (Desktop Amplifier)

Helicopter

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As far as I know Creek rised its prises as well, seems to me EU market is hugely uncompetitive for audio manufacturing.
You get a lot more of virtually anything for the same money in the US, especially in the less-visited Heartland. Even stuff that is made in the EU is often cheaper here, like wine, cheese, even my breakfast:

20211004_075518.jpg


$3 for these delicious croissants imported from France.

I love Europe, so we always have European cheese, sausage, beer, etc. here.

Just came back from Germany last month, and I would say Euro in Germany buys about what you get for 70 cents here. It is not just VAT and shipping. There is more to retail, even online than that. And UK was worse, even in my pre-Brexit experience.

I wonder what the price is in China, and why no one thinks it strange things can be yet cheaper there than the US.
 

sarumbear

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Zek

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The wattage is quite low. Or can more powerful adapter be used for a boost ?
That's the limits of used power chips (max 26V DC).
 

Jarrett

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It just means that technology in speaker amplification hasnt progressed that much so a 4 grand amp can be made for the same specs in 2021 for $150. In fact they might cost as much if not more. This isnt the fault of a single manufacturer like Topping but perhaps the industry as a whole.

Right, I was leaning on those years of difference, not to mention age, as the main question. Surprising it has gone in the opposite direction.
 

Koeitje

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50W is really little for an amplifier, yet along a Class D amplifier.

I wish the design (or future design) were based on TPA3255 with a proper passive cooling solution, allowing much more clean power for little money.
This amplifier is absolutely tiny. Can fit 2-3 of these + adapters in one of my NC400's. So that's 4-6 channels vs 1 single channel in terms of space.
 

JPrufrk

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Does anyone know how Topping achieved the insensitivity to speaker impedance that Amir measured ("Almost no load dependency")? This seems to have been an issue with most or all Infineon Merus based designs thus far.

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. Does anyone know if the filter is omitted on this amp? Does this have anything to do (one way or the other) with the insensitivity to speaker impedance? e.g., actually adding a filter and putting it in the feedback loop?
 

phoenixsong

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Oh yeah, slightly off topic, but is Topping going to make TOTL portable DAC/amps anytime soon? Lots of people seem to be looking for one now that the Dan Clark Stealth is out and about
 

milan616

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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.

When I first got my SA300 I used a short run, under 18", and it kept sending the amp into protection mode. At the time I was rebuilding some crossovers and just using it so I didn't have to drag towers back to my AVR. I thought I had a short and I looked it over couldn't find it. The same thing happened with the other speaker. Finally realized the cable was the issue so I tried a new longer run, worked fine until I turned it up a little then the same problem. It wasn't until I got to about 3 feet that it stopped doing that. Not sure if it's related to the output filter just wanted to share the story. Same thing happened with the speakers the SA300 was intended for, had to do an annoyingly long run when the amp was right next to the speaker. I'm not sure if the Sabaj A20a I replaced the SA300 with has the same problem since I've never tried it with a short run.
 

Drengur

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I just ordered one for my desktop. Mostly because there is little room for a Bryston.
 

JPrufrk

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When I first got my SA300 I used a short run, under 18", and it kept sending the amp into protection mode. At the time I was rebuilding some crossovers and just using it so I didn't have to drag towers back to my AVR. I thought I had a short and I looked it over couldn't find it. The same thing happened with the other speaker. Finally realized the cable was the issue so I tried a new longer run, worked fine until I turned it up a little then the same problem. It wasn't until I got to about 3 feet that it stopped doing that. Not sure if it's related to the output filter just wanted to share the story. Same thing happened with the speakers the SA300 was intended for, had to do an annoyingly long run when the amp was right next to the speaker. I'm not sure if the Sabaj A20a I replaced the SA300 with has the same problem since I've never tried it with a short run.
Also, in reply to "I hope not. This would be easily detectable by oscilloscope at the amplifier output." regarding the lack of an output filter on SMSL Merus-based products, Archimago reported that the SA300 output was indeed unfiltered.
 
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pma

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When I first got my SA300 I used a short run, under 18", and it kept sending the amp into protection mode. At the time I was rebuilding some crossovers and just using it so I didn't have to drag towers back to my AVR. I thought I had a short and I looked it over couldn't find it. The same thing happened with the other speaker. Finally realized the cable was the issue so I tried a new longer run, worked fine until I turned it up a little then the same problem. It wasn't until I got to about 3 feet that it stopped doing that. Not sure if it's related to the output filter just wanted to share the story. Same thing happened with the speakers the SA300 was intended for, had to do an annoyingly long run when the amp was right next to the speaker. I'm not sure if the Sabaj A20a I replaced the SA300 with has the same problem since I've never tried it with a short run.

Shame on such product.
 

Offler

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So this answers a question whether if I can get better combo with Topping DAC and AMP for the pricetag i recently paid. The answer is "yes, but not much".
 

ferongr

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The use or not of a powered sub to take some of the load
Well, unless you have an AV prepro ($$$$ and questionable performance), a miniDSP 2X4 ("OK" performance according to an early review by Amir) or one of the very few subs with high-pass outputs (questionable performance), a powered sub won't take some of the load. 2.1 bass management solutions are very limited.

Most stereo systems with a powered sub I've seen run the mains full-range.
 
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