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TP RA3 Rackmount Amplifier Review

Rate this amplifier:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 7 2.5%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 12 4.3%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 94 33.8%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 165 59.4%

  • Total voters
    278

howard416

Active Member
Joined
Sep 12, 2019
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If you care about noise, best to look at an Amp's absolute noise level which is typically measured with 20Hz -20kHz BW, in μVrms or μVrms (A-wt).
The RA3 has 16μVrms (A-wt) of noise at the outputs, same as the PA5. That's really low, but not as low as stuff like the LA90(D), Modulus-86, Rekkr or Gjallahorn.
The Rekkr is an interesting one to compare to. It's basically a high-powered headphone amp.
 

ol_mcdonald

Member
Joined
Feb 8, 2020
Messages
79
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41
"Topping" = Desktop equipment
"TP" = Living room, Home Theater equipment
"Topping | Professional" = Pro equipment

"Topping Professional" has only one product...
 

staticV3

Master Contributor
Joined
Aug 29, 2019
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Is there a possibility to buy the amp in Europe now?
As a European living in Europe, you can buy the RA3 from Topping's AliExpress store.

However, so far, there are no European retailers that have the RA3 stocked locally.
 

daniboun

Major Contributor
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Joe Smith

Addicted to Fun and Learning
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Jan 4, 2019
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I hope they make versions of these eventually without the rack ears...I think the long and narrow form factor would be well-received by many for home audio use...
 

daniboun

Major Contributor
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I hope they make versions of these eventually without the rack ears...I think the long and narrow form factor would be well-received by many for home audio use...
The PA5 II is the home version )
 

TonyJZX

Major Contributor
Joined
Aug 20, 2021
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The PA5 II is the home version )
dbwhlaQ.jpg
 

musicforcities

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 18, 2021
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The form factor and 12v trigger suggests this is targeted to whole house audio distribution or otherwise centralized audio/home theater systems in a closet / IT home run. And seems great for that. Desktop form factors with huge power bricks are much harder to manage in terms of neatness and cooling and end up taking more space in such an arrangement/in a rack with a fan unit on top versus three little boxes plus three bigger boxes and power cords sitting on a rack shelf. And no 12v trigger. You want to be able to turn these off and on automatically for thermal and reliability and safety considering amps tend to have a relatively higher fail rate.

I was thinking of getting a couple ayima or fossi amp for my home run but the form factor and lack of a trigger deterred me.

GREAT to see topping entering this space. So many distribution Amps are overpriced and mediocre performers at best. If these devices are reliable then topping might be on to something. And this form factor with its extra interior volume should help in that regard.
 

musicforcities

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 18, 2021
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Nice little product. Surely this Topping Pro thing is just a branding exercise and they’re not really trying to market to pros?

At that price point, decent longevity from components and build quality (that can tolerate regular abuse) must be quite low I would have thought.

Not pro as in live but pro as in home install. See my post above.
 

musicforcities

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 18, 2021
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Impedance varies with frequency. They are 'nominally' 8 ohm but drop to 3.7 ohm https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/kef-ls50-meta-review-speaker.25574/
Good point. Was the nominal impedance more useful/relevant in older class a/b days?

These days it seems like one needs the impedance curve! Or at least nominal impedances at a few different frequencies. That said, as the most power is used for lower frequencies, should we pay more attention to that in terms of power? Or does the non linear frequency response mean we should pay attention to upper range impedance as well.

I need an Amir tutorial…or refresher.
 

musicforcities

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 18, 2021
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446
Ya, Seriously crappy, I mean except for the real world power and extremely low distortion measurements. But other than that, really crappy. OK except when you compare it to the vast majority of really expensive A/B amps out there. Ok, I guess it's not really crappy.
I believe I read an article once that measured the properties of the materials different stereo shelves/racks were made of, including the lack lack table. Turns out the honeycomb construction of the lack was an optimum material for turntables, valve amps sensitive to vibrations, and everything else as a result. Denser materials, from glass, to wood to mdf would transmit more room vibrations and have resonances while the combination of low mass relative to high rigidity was optimal.

So…cheap ikea better than $2000 “audiophile” shelf.

And of course except for turntables…it’s a non issue anyway.
 

renaudrenaud

Major Contributor
Joined
Apr 20, 2019
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I have already a lot of Ikea Lack at home and I know they are reliable...

I am waiting on this thread to read some users returns, because Topping products don't have an excellent reliability aura...

On the subject of Ikea, when you move a lot, it's a cool brand: in every country you go, you have the opportunity to buy the same office chair and other stuff. And when you leave the country, no regrets to give this stuff.
 

sarieri

Active Member
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Joined
Mar 1, 2023
Messages
252
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155
My RA3 start to make popping crazy noise on the right channel the second day I bought it. It has been used to drive a pair of drivers of 8ohm. After all this PA5 BS, topping still hasn't figured out what's going on with it?
 

daniboun

Major Contributor
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May 2, 2020
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Take a look here... if you are looking for an alternative to the RA3 or PA5 with comparable measurements and better reliability )

 
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