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Topping D30 or another DAC with budget of $500?

Discussion in 'DACs' started by drabina, Apr 20, 2018.

  1. drabina

    drabina AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    I am in a market for a new DAC with budget of $500. I keep reading good reviews of the Topping D30 DAC plus some technical measurements showing its edge over similarly priced DACs. Are there any other DACs that I should be considering with my budget? I do not need or want a built-in headphone amp. Balanced outputs would be a plus though probably hard to get in a new unit unless I go used. Though I have seen an older Emotiva's with balanced outputs that I could buy used.
     

     

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  2. kray

    kray HE>i Subscriber

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    646
    Location:
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    Maverick D2 with tube and op-amp upgrades.
     
  3. invaderzim

    invaderzim AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
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    Location:
    California
    I was nervous about trying the D30 because with every product line from car waxes to DACs there are products that seem to be universally loved that I'm just not impressed with. I end up wondering how much is a placebo effect were the hype makes people think the things are good.
    That being said, so far I'm happy with it. I got it from parts express so I figured I could return it if I didn't like it. I can't come up with all the great adjectives about the music that reviews have to have nor mention a veil and its new location but I spent an hour organizing my box of random wires and cables while listening to it and really enjoyed the music.

    The Maverick Audio mentioned above has always peaked my interest too but so far I'm in the habit of just leaving my DAC on all the time and the tube makes that less appealing.
     
    DChen likes this.
  4. drabina

    drabina AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,103
    Location:
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    I was actually looking at the Maverick D2. I am also glad that invaderzim mentioned the tubes and constant on operation. If there is no remote, the DAC would be on 24/7. I am also looking at the Topping D50.
     
  5. E.Auer

    E.Auer Super Member

    Messages:
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    The D30 is popular because of it's price and neutral sound. It's a good choice for those not in to tinkering with tubes, op-amps etc.

    If you like the sound of your speakers and amp and wish no added color from a DAC it fits the bill.

    Eric
     
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  6. gvl

    gvl Super Member

    Messages:
    1,012
    Interesting, looks like Emotiva discontinued the DC-1 just recently, I read somewhere a DSD-capable replacement was in the works. You can probably still find a new but also discontinued Teac UD-501 that should fit your budget.
     

     

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  7. drabina

    drabina AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
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    Well, the D30 is so cheap that I may just buy it to see if I like it. Somebody on another forum mentioned the D50 which supposed to be even better. Still below my budget. Decisions, decisions,...
     
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  8. Poultrygeist

    Poultrygeist Lunatic Member

    I almost ordered the D50 but after reading some comparative comments on Audio Science Review I'm sticking with my much loved D30.

    The D30 comes with a power supply but the D50 doesn't as it's USB powered.
     
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  9. fredgarvin

    fredgarvin AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    E.Auer likes this.
  10. sonci

    sonci Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    532
    Have you tried any of your linear power supplies with the D30?
    There are a lot of 15v/1A psu on ebay, but don't know if it's worth. Power regulation inside the D30 is decent enough, but if I think Amir used a linear lab supply for his measurements..
     
  11. Poultrygeist

    Poultrygeist Lunatic Member

    No I haven't but I read where someone tried a linear and there was no audible improvement.
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2018
    E.Auer likes this.

     

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  12. sonci

    sonci Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, do you use the usb or spidf input? My D30 sounds a lot better from the spidf than from the usb input, but it should be the other way round according to measurements.
     
  13. E.Auer

    E.Auer Super Member

    Messages:
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    I have used both and these days prefer USB for Tidal and other streaming duty.

    Eric
     
  14. sonci

    sonci Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    532
    Well, in the end the source should matter too, even though asynchronous usb is important and superior to toslink, the spidf out of my cd player really shines through this dac.
    Do you notice any hum on the usb input, with the amplifier volume up and no music playing?
     
  15. E.Auer

    E.Auer Super Member

    Messages:
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    No hum at all, dead silent. Was the same way on SPDIF.

    XMOS is pretty good.

    Eric
     
  16. E.Auer

    E.Auer Super Member

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    And another reason why I use USB is that the Tidal app bypasses the system sound settings.

    [​IMG]

    Eric
     

     

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  17. setup1

    setup1 AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Location:
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    I opted out of the Topping D10 Massdrop for mid-April shipment when they announced an undetermined delay. Since the D30 offered greater input flexibility (USB, S/PDIF & optical), I bought one from Amazon. So far I've been very impressed with its performance compared to the AQ Dragonfly Black it replaced when streaming FM and Spotify (free) through my iPad mini. The D30 sounds more transparent and dynamic. But that didn't surprise me since the $30 XtremPro X1 USB DAC trounced the DF Black when I did a shootout using a Lenovo laptop.
     
  18. gvl

    gvl Super Member

    Messages:
    1,012
    Also need this:
    2018-04-24 08_21_32-TIDAL.png
     
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  19. E.Auer

    E.Auer Super Member

    Messages:
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    Location:
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  20. Poultrygeist

    Poultrygeist Lunatic Member

    I prefer the optical input.
     

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