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Fantastic Sound

A Review On: Astell & Kern AK120

Astell & Kern AK120

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Stonemanty
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Pros: Sound quality better, louder more dynamic than than AK100, same great build quality, better interface , better volume knob than AK100, case included

Cons: Brown leather case not my thing, bigger than AK100 - only bought the AK100 a few months ago!

The first bars of the 24bit version of Massive Attack's Unfinished Sympathy - I got my wallet out.  More detail, soundstage, bass, more finesse, more power and dynamics (I listen to the AK100 in isolation at around 47-50, currently listening to the AK120 at 39 - whether it's exactly the same scale, I don't know of course)  However, I don't need to strap it to the Vorzugge Pure to get the extra punch that combination offers.  The software has a grid interface which feels like progress, and it seems to be more responsive in use.  Retina doesn't apply though.

 

So, I'm delighted - again.  

 

Is it perfect?  No; the volume knob feels much more sturdy and has some protective ramps either side - but it still seems a little unnecessary and is still too tall.  I am currently having a bit of a problem with the SD cards, it's forgotten them twice now, alternatively.  I see the firmware version is 1.0.  I'm not sure if it's the same as the AK100 (currently at v1.33) the interface would suggest not? Anyway, I'll try to update it and see if that fixes the card issue. Registering tracks seems to take a long time too, but no change from the AK100 there.

 

Overall, it has to get a 5 star review as it simply sounds superb - Skrillex has just made my brain resonate in the middle of a huge soundscape.  Now that's worth the considerable amount of dosh it's cost me - anyone want to buy a barely used AK100/Vorzugge Pure rig?

 

Hmmm, I'm just wondering when the AK130 will hit the shops...

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