Astell & Kern AK70 MKII Digital Music Player DAP

$699.00

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The Astell & Kern AK70 MKii, a new and improved version of the original AK70 music player.  Following the design philosophy of A & ultima SP1000, the AK70 MKii achieves high output and low distortion and higher S / N ratio.

AK70 MKii versus AK70 added features:

  • a second DAC for bigger soundstage and clearer imaging
  • Dual DAC separates the left and right audio channels from input to output
  • output level increased to 4.0 Vrms for balanced listening providing more power to drive less efficient headphones
  • a larger battery
  • marked improvements in other technical specs: signal to noise ratio, crosstalk, THD+N and lower clock jitter

AK70 MKii Dual DAC separates the left and right audio channels from input to output

The advantage of a dual DAC player has now become available to everyone. The AK70 MKII is the first model from Astell&Kern to be equipped with a dual DAC for under a thousand dollars. Its separated channel circuit design offers less noise and interference, yet adds more fidelity and audio output power, to create a bigger sound stage with clearer imaging when paired with your favorite cans or speakers.

Higher audio output with the same refined Astell&Kern sound signature

With a substantial power output of 4.0Vrms from the balanced output, the AK70 MKII can drive a wide range of heavy, hard-to-drive headphones without a problem thanks to Astell&Kern’s latest audio design technology.

While maintaining the natural and neutral tone and sound signature Astell&Kern is famous for, the newly designed audio circuit creates authentic sounds by exceeding previous Hi-Fi Audio specifications, including SNR, Crosstalk, and THD+N, over previous models.

The powerful AK70 MKⅡ’s sound quality is sure to please even the most discerning music aficionado.

 

AK70 MKⅡ vs. AK70

Model name AK70 MKⅡ AK70
DAC   Dual DAC (Cirrus Logic CS4398 x2)   Single DAC (Cirrus Logic CS4398 x1)
Output level   Balance 4.0Vrms Unbalance 2.0Vrms (Condition No Load)   Balance 2.3Vrms Unbalance 2.3Vrms (Condition No Load)
Signal to Noise Ratio   118dB @ 1kHz, Unbalance 119dB @ 1kHz, Balance   116dB @ 1kHz, Unbalance 116dB @ 1kHz, Balance
Crosstalk   136dB @ 1kHz, Unbalance 138dB @ 1kHz, Balance   130dB @ 1kHz, Unbalance 130dB @ 1kHz, Balance
THD+N   0.0005% @ 1kHz, Unbalance 0.0005% @ 1kHz, Balance   0.0008% @ 1kHz, Unbalance 0.0007% @ 1kHz, Balance
Clock Jitter   45 ps (Typ.)   50 ps (Typ)
Battery   2,500mAh 3.7 V Li-Polymer   2,200mAh 3.7 V Li-Polymer

 

Compact size for easy carrying and one-handed operation

AK70 MKⅡ delivers superb Hi-Fi audio quality in a pocket-sized portable, a must-have feature for listeners who want high quality sound any place and anytime. No need to compromise with lossy, compressed music anymore.

The ergonomic body design fits nicely in the palm of the hand, making operation a smooth, one-handed experience.

24-bit, 192 kHz Bit-to-Bit Playback

The AK70 MKⅡ plays any resolution of digital files up to 24-bit/192 kHz, bit-for-bit.
32-bit audio and single or double rate DSD can also be played, but it will be converted to PCM or downsampled.


*32-bit, 384 kHz is downsampled to 24-bit, 192 kHz, and 32-bit, 352 kHz is downsampled to 24-bit, 176 kHz for playback.
*DSD 64/128 is converted via DSD-to-PCM to PCM 24-bit, 176 kHz for playback.

Balanced Out

The AK70 MKⅡ delivers original sound using the 2.5mm 4-pole balanced output that Astell&Kern first pioneered on the AK240 (and other manufacturers soon adopted). The balanced out provides a more powerful audio signal with less noise interference.

USB Audio

A simple USB connection will allow the AK70 MKII to be used as a digital music storage device and/or pre-amp to output digital audio through USB.

The AK70 MKⅡ transfers DSD in native format through DoP (DSD over PCM) and converts DSD to PCM for output for external USB Audio that do not support DoP.

* USB audio (Digital Out) output is available only when an external device can accept digital input through USB.

* DoP (DSD over PCM): This is the standard for transferring DSD data to a USB interface and sends DSD data by mounting them onto PCM data frames.

*The type of OTG cable to connect the AK70 MKII with a portable amp differs depending on the specs of the amp. An OTG cable is not included in the AK70 MKⅡ package.

USB DAC

Connect to your PC/Mac computer, or other system, via a USB cable and use the AK70 MKⅡ’s hardware to provide better sound quality. The AK70 MKII, when used as a USB DAC, will bring out more detail and provide a better listening experience than your computer is capable of delivering, even when listening to your favorite streaming service!

When using the AK70 MKⅡ as a USB DAC, playback up to 24-bit, 96kHz is supported to deliver a much richer sound through a larger soundstage and resolution that goes far beyond the limits of an embedded sound card.

Want to easily play back DSD on your computer? No problem. Using the PC’s embedded sound card usually requires a complicated process to playback DSD data, but with the AK70 MKⅡ, simply install our DAC on your PC/MAC and play DSD with ease.


*AK70 MKⅡ supports up to 24-bit 96 kHz with USB audio class 1.0 specs.

*DSD 64/128 is converted via DSD-to-PCM for playback.

AK Connect

AK Connect, a DLNA-based music control app, is available on the AK70 MKII and smart devices including your phone or tablet. You can easily control playback, volume, streaming over Wi-Fi and more with this free app from Astell&Kern. AK Connect allows for convenient access to all of your connected music libraries including your smart devices, computers, NAS drive, other A&K Wi-Fi enabled products or any other DLNA compatible music system on your local network. AK Connect app is available for both iOS and Android devices.

AK CD-RIPPER

The AK70 MKⅡ allows users to rip CDs with ease by connecting our AK CD-RIPPER accessory. Our exclusive CD-Ripper can rip your CDs directly to the AK70 MKII with 100% error-correction. When connected to Wi-Fi, all metadata for the CD being ripped will be downloaded from the Gracenote™ database, and all of the tagging information will be stored for each album. The combination of the AK70 MKII and AK CD-Ripper make it simple and easy to digitize your entire CD collection.

* The AK CD-Ripper may not be properly recognized when using a power supply adapter rated at less than 5V 2A.

Design Concept

With its minimalist design, the AK70 MKⅡ offers a secure one-handed grip thanks to its new subtle and precise angles.

At only 15 mm (0.59 in) thick and a feather-light 150 grams (5.3 oz), the AK70 MKⅡ fits just right in your hand or pocket when you are on the go.

The black anodized body shimmers like the sea at night and the aqua colored volume knob accent produces a calming wave pattern. In perfect contrast, the rear glass case is an extension of the volume knob’s aesthetic aqua color.

More Information
Drew's Recommendations Yes

Product Reviews

Following the design philosophy of A & ultima SP1000, achieving high output and low distortion and high S / N

AK70 MKII follows the design philosophy of the latest 4th generation flagship model "A & ultima SP1000", achieving higher output, lower distortion and higher S / N ratio . Maximize the power of Cirrus Logic's high-end DAC-IC "CS4398" installed in a dual DAC configuration to provide a vast sound stage and excellent stereo separation.

SP 1000 AK70 MKII AK 70
output Unbalance 2.2 Vrms
Balance 3.9 Vrms (no load) Unbalance 2.0 Vrms
Balance 4.0 Vrms (no load) Unbalance 2.3 Vrms
Balance 2.3 Vrms (no load)
S / N Unbalanced 120 dB @ 1 kHz
Balance 122 dB @ 1 kHz Unbalanced 118 dB @ 1 kHz
balance 119 dB @ 1 kHz Unbalanced 116 dB @ 1 kHz
Balance 116 dB @ 1 kHz
THD + N Unbalance 0.0005% @ 1 kHz
Balance 0.0008% @ 1 kHz Unbalance 0.0005% @ 1 kHz
balance 0.0005% @ 1 kHz Unbalance 0.0008% @ 1 kHz
balance 0.0007% @ 1 kHz

Dual DAC configuration by Cirrus Logic "CS4398" similar to AK240

For D / A conversion, which is the key point of sound quality, as well as the second generation flagship model "AK240", C / LASE high-end DAC-IC "CS4398" is independently L / R and GND It adopts dual DAC configuration which made L / R independent. As a result, as a single portable audio player, the phenomenal crosstalk, S / N ratio, dynamic range expansion and low distortion are realized.

Supports playback of PCM maximum 384 kHz / 32 bit, DSD 128 (5.6 MHz / 1 bit)

* Native playback is up to 192 kHz / 24 bit. * Downconvert 352.8 kHz to 176.4 kHz, 384 kHz 192 kHz, 32 bits to 24 bits, DSD supports conversion to PCM 176.4 kHz / 24 bits.

In addition to the normal headphone jack, a balanced output terminal is mounted (2.5 mm / 4 pole)

In addition to the usual headphone output terminal (3.5 mm / 3 pole unbalanced), 2.5 mm 4 pole balanced output terminal which can maximize the benefit of dual DAC is also installed.

Built-in DLNA network function "AK Connect"

The function "AK Connect" born by strengthening the DLNA function wirelessly connects to a personal computer or NAS server in the same network via Wi-Fi, streaming playback of music data stored in them and downloading to AK 70 MKII You can also do things. In addition, it is possible to easily remote control with a smartphone or tablet that downloaded AK Connect App. It is also useful for home audio applications as a stationary player.

- streaming playback from PC / NAS via Wi-Fi and transfer of music files
- Stream playback from the same smartphone / tablet via Wi-Fi to
AK 70 MKII - via smartphone / tablet with AK Connect App installed via Wi-Fi Remote control of AK 70 MKII
DMP (Digital Media Player)

It is possible to select and play the contents of the media server.
DMC (Digital Media Controller)

Select the contents of the media server, select the playable device, and establish the connection.
DMS (Digital Media Server = Network Server)

As a media server, save the content and deliver it to other compatible devices via the network
DMR (Digital Media Renderer = Network Player)

Play the contents of the media server according to the instructions of DMC.

Store features can be purchased directly from the player body

If you are connected to the network via Wi-Fi, you have "groover's" application that you can purchase high res music data directly from AK 70 MKII. Also, although service in Japan is not yet available, it also supports music streaming service "TIDAL". If you have an account, you can enjoy streaming playback on Wi-Fi online.


Supports USB AUDIO digital output. DSD file also supports transmission on DoP

AK70 MKII supports USB AUDIO digital output and it can transmit with USB connection with portable headphone amplifier with digital input. DSD file supports transmission with DoP. It is also possible to output PCM converted. * PCM: 384 kHz / 32 bit DoP: DSD 128 (5.6 MHz / 1 bit). (As of September 2017) * DoP (DSD over PCM) is a method for transmitting DSD sound source data via the USB interface. * USB audio OTG cable necessary for digital connection is not included. Please use a commercially available product that conforms to the equipment to be connected.

 



USB DAC function

AK70 MKII can be used as 96 kHz / 24 bit USB-DAC. By using line out mode or balanced output, you can experience sound quality comparable to high-end audio easily by connecting with an amplifier, speaker, etc. * 96 kHz / over 24 bits down convert, DSD will be converted to PCM.


aptx HD compatible, with Bluetooth function

Also equipped with Bluetooth 4.0 (A2DP / AVRCP) function. Wireless connection with Bluetooth compatible speakers, headphones, car stereos, etc. is also possible. Moreover, because it corresponds to apt - X HD, high sound quality wireless transmission equivalent to 48 kHz / 24 bit is possible by connection with compatible equipment.

Ripping CD directly to the main unit, AK CD RIPPER / AK CD RIPPER MKII compatible

It corresponds to connection of "AK-CD RIPPER MKII" and "AK CD-RIPPER" which can rip a CD sound source directly without using a PC. Setting is to select file format (WAV / FLAC) and ripping speed (Normal / Fast / Very fast), and if you turn on "Automatic CD ripping", you can just tap the icon on the AK 70 MKII notification bar and rip I will start. Furthermore, it accesses "Gracenote's (Gracenote)" which is well-established as a music database via the network function of AK 70 MKII and automatically obtains information such as album name, song title / artist name and album art. * AK CD - RIPPER MKII and AK CD - RIPPER are supplied microUSB cable, please connect to the outlet with 5V / 2A or more USB compatible AC adapter. USB compatible AC adapter less than 5V / 2A will not work.


AK70 MKII, AK70 Specification Comparison

AK70 MKII AK 70
DAC CS4398 × 2 CS4398 × 1
output Unbalance 2.0 Vrms
Balance 4.0 Vrms (no load) Unbalance 2.3 Vrms
Balance 2.3 Vrms (no load)
PCM PCM : Up to 384 kHz / 32 bit (native playback: up to 192 kHz / 24 bits )
DSD DSD : Up to 5.6 MHz / 1 bit ( converted to PCM 176 kHz / 24 bit )
USB AUDIO DSD (DoP): maximum 5.6 MHz / 1 bit PCM: maximum 384 kHz / 32 bit
DAC Max 24 bit 96 kHz (UAC 1.0)
capacity Maximum 320 GB (built-in 64 GB + microSD max 256 GB)
AK CONNECT, BT (aptx HD compatible), USB DAC function, USB AUDIO compatible, STORE function, AK CD RIPPER compatible
Size / Weight W 62.8 x H 96.8 x D 15.2 mm 150 g W 60.3 × H 96.8 × D 13 mm 132 g
Color Noir Black Misty Mint

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