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Astel & Kern AK 120 and the Tesla Model S

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Does anyone know if the AK 120 will play back on a Tesla Model S.  The car has multiple USB ports which work fine for some DAPs but most notably do not work with iphones/ipads.  There is no stereo AUX input.


Not a deal killer but it is a factor I want to nail down before purchasing an AK 120.  I currently either use iphone via bluetooth or a memory stick with FLAC at 24/96.


Thank you

post #2 of 5

Just picked up my Model S today and was unable to get it to work with the AK120 either through USB (in either DAC or USB drive mode) or pairing with Bluetooth.  My phone paired no problem but could not get the AK120 to pair.  The AK120 recognized the car but the car did not recognize the device.


I also tried just copying my FLAC files onto a USB stick and that didn't work either.  Looks like it's hit or miss with it - and from what I've read - the onboard music player app is not that great.


Not that big a deal for me as I have XM and use TuneIn so there's lots of music choice in the car.  But so far no luck with the AK120.


I'll keep digging.  Hopefully a future software patch will correct the problem.

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the post.  I had spoken to the service manager and the comment was passed along.  They are well aware of the inability to use iDevices but they were not familiar with the issue with the AK.  I wish they had put in anAUX.  The bluetooth is a wee bit flakey with audio playback.

post #4 of 5

I've gotten a little farther along.  Here's what I discovered so far:


- USB stick needs to be formatted FAT.  exFAT (which is the default used by Windows in some cases) doesn't work.  You will need to download a utility that will force a FAT format.  Just search for 'HP USB Disk Storage Format Tool'


- Once formatted as FAT, you can copy your 192/24 FLAC files to it and the Tesla onboard music app will properly parse the metadata and play back the files.  It will disregard any album art.  It goes online and grabs its own cover art.  Seems to work fine.


- So there are a couple of reasons the AK is not being recognized: 1) could be a file format compatibility issue.  2) could be a USB hub incompatibility issue as the AK is really 3 drives in USB mode.  A possible experiment would be to force format the AK memory cards to FAT but I'm not sure how or if it's possible to do that with the internal storage of the AK.  So maybe a moot point.


- Regardless - even if the AK can connect - you won't be taking advantage of the DACs since it just passes the files through USB to the Tesla host.  The only way it would make use of the DACs is if it went through an AUX in (which Tesla doesn't physically have).  I also find it more convenient to just leave the USB stick connected to the car all the time.  It plays the same files as the AK and does a relatively decent job of it.  The onboard EQ is not that extensive but it's enough to get a reasonably good sound from your HD music files (much better than XM or TuneIn).


Hope this helps. 

post #5 of 5

Does anyone know how to "make" a Tesla car recognize either an Askell & Kern portable media player via USB connection, or a simple USB memory stick loaded with music files playable via the car speakers?

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