RME ADI-2 FS (AKM) or Topping E30

Hi all, has anyone tried both the Topping E30 and RME ADI-2 FS (w/ AKM chip)? Both have DSD direct which is favorable for DSD upsampling from HQ Player (my primary use). I understand I ultimately need to audition both myself but would appreciate any opinions as one is ten times the cost of the other. Thanks.

I have had both (but have subsequently sold them both on). There are a couple of reasons for the additional price of the RME unit. One is that it is also a very good headphone amp. Another is that it has a lot of additional features, such as parametric EQ and crossfeed, that many people value. Lastly, it is well-made and supported through an active user community. In the end, I didn’t need all of those features, so I ended up selling it on. Note that you can no longer purchase the AKM version new.

The E30 is a completely transparent DAC. I would still have it, but I could never get it to play nicely with my RPi streamer. I believe that this may be due to limited Linux support, although I have other Topping products that don’t have this issue. I have also read (subsequent to my selling it) that a factory reset of the E30 may have solved this problem, but I never got a chance to try it.

Hope that helps.

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Very helpful. Thank you.

I would go RME for its balanced XLR outputs and class leading custom driver support on all operating systems.

@jussi_laako has 2 of them and highly recommends feeding DSD256 in DSDD mode.

From a HQPlayer support perspective it is always safest to copy his NAA and DAC gear as much as possible for best HQP experience

I have NAA OS on UpBoard Gateway feeding my ADI-2 FS DAC.

Be careful you don’t accidentally buy a newer ESS version since there is no DSDD mode. If serial # ends in B it is AKM version, if serial # ends in C it is ESS

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