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I've got item today. first impression is good. before I get this , I used gustard a20h. at somepoint, I would compare this with it.
just writing somethings of my experience below here.(sorry for my bad english. not a native speaker..)
1. usb dac is completely seperate from power - GOOD!!!
- just turn off(power button from remote or long press dial from front panel)
or fully power off(rear power toggle switch),
usb dac is still alive. it will not disappear from windows sound device list and still working in sound device list.
I think this is really good configuration. my previous a20h couldnt support this.
2. headphone out & rear out selection - one little bad thing. (not a issue)
- you can select
headphone out : headphone volume control only(no line out)
line out : 0dB full signal rear panel out. (no headphone out)
headphone & rear out : volume of both out is controlled at once.
I think if 3rd option has rear passthrough selection, this would be perfect.
my gustard a20h support that option. actually it has pre-out selecting option. but a20h can't select hp-out or line-out seperately.
- when selecting output mode, you could hear kind of relay switching sound from product. "click!".
hardware pop & headphone pop both could be hear. i didnt noticed when i wrote this review.
---but it didnt hear from actual sound out. it just hardware pop sound.)---
3. input ac voltage pre selection & power cord.
- I'm living in south Korea(220v country). so before I plug item in, I need to check voltage selection.
and only 115(110)v power cord was included. this is not a issue.
but if you live in 220/230v country, you need to double check voltage selection and buy additional power cord personally.
4. remote controller.
- full metal case. good . but, if you want change cr2032 battery, there is no battery cover.
so just 4 screws off from the back cover and change it.
5. 'dB' based volume control - this is the reason why I bought this.
- my previous A20h has simple 60 step relay volume control and it was too big volume gap between each step to me.
I dont know dx7 really control with 1dB level(0.5dB step over -50dB) or not.
but I feel more comfort when changing volume level than a20h.
actually topping dx7 has more power(420mW at 300ohm with 4p xlr) but more step of volume control.
( gustard a20h has 264mW at 300ohm with 4p xlr)
6. sound quality... actually nothing that I need to mention... and I can't really.
gustard a20h also has dual dac (but it has ak4497eq series chip)
and same fully balanced concept which is based on xmos usb interface.
I can't find any difference of sound quality between a20h and this dx7. both pretty good for me.
I was consider Schiit Jot as the price range.
but in my case,
1) I dont need that much power. - schiit jot(7w per ch with 4p-xlr)
2) I need detailed digital volume control.
3) fully balanced circuit configure(even I cant feel much difference though it).
consider what I need, DX 7 is really good for me(and for you maybe)
It's very strange there are no difference between the A20h and le DX7, the Gustard twince more expansive than the Toppin...
at first, I'm not a serious listener, so some differences could be exist( or not... )
yup, in my case, I feel I've wasting money on a20h...
What headphone are you using?
normally I'm using 2 heaphone + 1 iem. monoprice m1060, koss esp 950 and isine 20. daily main is m1060.
yes, they are not hard to drive. all under 50 ohm and easy to drive.(except esp950, it is just electrostat)
Thanks for your review. Really informative. I've been wrangling my hair out trying to decide on a DAC and AMP combo. I might pull the trigger on the A20H.
I love everything about the DX7 and DX7s, but the 20 ohm headphone output impedance just won't work for me.
yup, a20h actually good product, it just wasnt fit on my case.
I hope you will satisfy with a20h. :)