Today we are looking at the Topping NX7 portable amplifier. It is priced at $179 USD.
Disclaimer: ShenzhenAudio sent us the Topping NX7 Portable AMP for this review. As always, I am here to convey my honest experience with the product.
Topping Electronics & Technology, known as ‘TOPPING’, is based in Guangzhou, China, and was established in 2008. They design some of the best DACs and AMPs when it comes to the price-to-performance ratio.
They have a dedicated R&D team of skilled engineers and audiophiles. In addition to that, they are heavily invested in the latest audio testing machinery such as the APx555 from Audio Precision.
Of course, all of this means one thing for us consumers, better devices! I have used numerous Topping products in the past, the oldest two I remember are the TP30 and the NX1. The year was 2013 I believe. I never had any problems with their products despite using 30+ of them throughout the years. They have a really good track record and they strive to do better.
Today we are reviewing their newest portable AMP, the NX7. The NX series is part of Topping’s portable lineup, and the new NX7 is the successor to the lesser-known NX5.
NX7 – Portable NFCA Headphone Amplifier
The NX7 is a high-performance, single-ended portable NFCA amplifier. It retails for $179 USD and comes with a built-in 4000mAh battery. Topping says that the NFCA modules are specifically optimized for use in the portable NX7. This particular modification of the NFCA doesn’t suffer any performance loss compared to desktop products, which is pretty impressive in my book.
I always thought Topping could achieve better results with cleaner power from the built-in batteries. It’s good to see this becoming a reality with the G5 and NX7. The G5 is also very impressive and will be reviewed on Headfonia, soon. You can reach NX7’s official web page through this link. The highlights & specs are below.
Topology: Single-Ended NFCA featuring 123≈125dB SNR & 135dB DNR
Gain: 3 Stages L/M/H
Battery: 4000mAh Built-in | 20H L/M Gain | 10H H Gain
Impedance: <0.1Ω Output Impedance
Power: 1400mW into 32Ω load
Dimensions: WxHxD 135x16x70mm
Packaging & Accessories
Topping’s NX7 comes in a small, textured cardboard box. The box design is stylish, the textured outer layer looks much better than Topping’s simpler, white/black cardboard boxes. Inside are two rubber bands for attaching the amp to your DAP or phone, a USB-A to USB-C short cable for charging, a 3.5mm to 3.5mm interconnect, and a small rubber pad to prevent the amp from slipping off your DAP. Apart from these, there are no other accessories in the box.
Design & Build Quality
The device has an all-aluminum chassis. The anodized matte black finish looks very sleek and elegant, albeit retaining some fingermarks. The volume knob is made of aluminum, just like the rest of the chassis.
It features a smooth rotational feel without steps. It also allows you to turn the device on and off. The volume knob is aluminum like the rest of the chassis and has a smooth rotational feel. It also allows you to turn the device on and off.
Topping has engineered the chassis to prevent the volume knob from accidentally turning when the device is in your pocket. This gives the overall device a distinctive look and also provides a functional solution to a common problem. On the top of the device, we see the NX7 model name laser printed in white font. On the back, there is a small section with the company name and address.
The device has a simple layout in general. The USB-C charging socket is located on the bottom panel of the device and the 3-step gain is right next to it. There is also a power/status LED here. All the inputs and outputs are located on the top panel, next to the volume knob. There is one 3.5mm input and two outputs, 3.5mm and 4.4mm. Please note that the 4.4mm headphone output here is only here for convenience. The device does not feature a fully balanced architecture. More on that later.
In my opinion, the product is a bit large to be a pocketable product with its 135x16x70mm dimension, but I think it can be accepted when I add the fact that DAPs are getting bigger and bigger and the technical performance of the NX7 into the equation. In terms of weight, the device is around 200 grams. The quality perception is quite high. We expect nothing less from Topping. The sockets used also feel rigid and robust. Overall, we can say that the build quality is quite good.
In my opinion, the product is slightly too large to fit in a pocket with a size of 135x16x70mm, but I think it is acceptable considering that DAPs and phones are getting bigger and bigger nowadays. Plus, the device weighs around 200 grams. Ultimately, after factoring in the great sound quality and long battery life, I think the size can be overlooked.
The review continues on Page Two, after the click HERE or by using the jump below.
Page 1: Topping, NX7, Packaging & Accessories, Design & Build Quality
Page 2: Technology & Power, Performance, Last Words