Can I crack the other one too, sir (in half)? :D
Edited by Jedaite - 2/2/14 at 2:48pm
Can I crack the other one too, sir (in half)? :D
Since many of you said to use the AK120, I've looked it up on Amazon and found this comprehensive review. Therefore, if you plan on buying it and have many songs like I do, then read this:
"The audio quality of the A&K120 is fine. But, and this is a huge issue, if you currently use an iPod do not under any circumstances switch to the A&K unless you are prepared to spend 3-5 months completely re-indexing and re-tagging your entire music library. The professional reviewers of Astell&Kern transfer 8-20 files onto the device and then review it entirely for audio quality. Audio quality is high. But they make no practical tests of actually trying to use the device. Know the following:
1. It only works with their own dedicated iRiver music software.
2. The iRiver music software is possibly the worst software in the market today for managing your music library.
The iRiver software does not sort by Album, it will not sort by Artists, it will not sort by Genre. It goes without saying that none of the iTunes meta-tagging can be used, so you have to dig into Windows file codes to re-tag all your song files. If you have previously done this in iTunes know that your images are now entirely separated from your song files so you will have to find them and re-apply them one by one. Transferring files is a manual process, a nightmare, and has to be done every time you open the software. The meta-tagging in windows file code may or may not apply. If you re-tag using the iRiver software know this:
1. They do NOT store any library information. I spent a week importing files and editing those files to the library I wanted. The very next time I opened iRiver there was NO library file - I had to re-import all the files and none of the editing had been preserved. Completely useless. [Addition: I keep FLAC and AAC/MP3 versions of the music files - the iRiver just lists them all no matter how many times I edit the list.)
2. If you need to re-tag one file in an album, or create virtual albums, you must do so file by file by file file. If you select an entire album and want to change the genre, iRiver will change the names of every song file to the first entry on the list - so now my Billy Joel Album has every track permanently labelled Angry Young Man. [Be super careful]
3. There is no way to correct or undo anything that iRiver does - the changes are permanent and non-retrievable.
4. There is absolutely no customer support or any effort to even pretend there is customer support. The software is written in Korean so you cannot fix it under any circumstances. They expect you to do everything with playlists - if, like me, you have 100's of thousands of files, this will take five or six months. By default their expectation is you want to listen to music in random order so they have optimized the device for random listening.
5. If you search the device by genre you must then listen to the tracks in alphabetical order, if you sort by artist, then same applies. You cannot for example, sort by "Classical" and then play Beethoven's Fifth Symphony - you have to search 150,000 tracks one by one to find the first movement. [Listening to La Boheme in alphabetical order was surreal.]
6. If you have more than a few albums on the device it can take up to five minutes to boot up. EVERY TIME YOU USE IT.
Everything above can be done easily in iTunes. Do not switch from an iPod., If you want to spend this kind of money, go to a specialty site and buy a modified iPod with the Wolfson DAC chip and play it through a headphone amplifier. It will be cheaper and 1000% more functional. Or get an older iPod, which already has the Wolfson DAC and have the memory upgraded to 240Gb. Use good headphones and there is no difference from the A&K and it will cost 1/3.
The sound is fantastic, but this is the world's best sounding, most expensive paperweight.
FURTHER NOTES: I have now been using the A&K120 for six weeks with little satisfaction. When you transfer music to the device it does NOT tell you when it is out of memory. The software DOES NOT roll over automatically from the internal memory to the external Mini SD cards. You need to specify which card you are transferring music to. This is done presumably so you can swap cards in and out. What it does in fact is cause countless file transfer errors. You need to check the remaining capacity on each memory card constantly and decide with high precision what you are transferring to which card.
The bigger issue, and this is basically a deal killer, is that the software on the device DOES NOT index any of the files on the memory cards. As you search through the tree (Artist, Genre etc.) the files on the Mini SD cards DO NOT APPEAR. They are there - you can find them if you go to the "Files" display. The "Files" display will list each file folder you have transferred card by card, but the software on the device is of no use in searching for anything on the SD cards.
Effectively this means the capacity IS NOT 192GB, instead the usable capacity is only the internal memory which is 64GB.
The US staff has no role in the software and can only listen to your questions. The Korean staff does not speak English and has responded to every complaint (so far) by telling me to just "Create Playlists".
A FURTHER NOTE: I have been trying to listen to the music by using the "File Folders" option and have discovered a major software flaw. When you transfer the music to the A&K using the iRiver Plus4 software, it reverse all of your file folder conventions and creates new ones. So if you create a file folder labelled "Les Miserables," iRiver will instead create a folder for every actor in the cast, under which will be a sub-folder labelled "Les Miserables" containing only the songs sung by that actor.
So the "File Folder" option is completely useless as a way to listen to an album. The designers of this device are of the firm belief that everyone wants to listen to music in random order. Forget about trying to listen to a complete symphony - you have to listen to every movement labelled "Allegro" instead. Once again, when I called to ask if this would be corrected, I was told that it was simple, I should just a create a playlist for every symphony I want to listen to.....useless, completely useless.
As I understand it, they have no intention of fixing any of these problems. Avoid this device - do not buy one. I would give it back if they would refund my money but they will not. I would give anything to talk to an engineer who knows the system and can speak English. I expect this company will be out of business shortly so buyer beware."
I'll reiterate that I found it on Amazon by performing a quick Google search on it. Since I'm not interested in it, I thought that people who want to get the Ak120 may find this eye opening.
As for the specifics of the review, only Ak120 owners can confirm or refute them.
Also, I want to add that I don't like the output impedance. It's 3ohms. I don't think anything higher than 1 ohm is that great for sensitive IEMs. It's probably designed for higher impedance phones. The most revealing source I've tried is Objective DAC/Amp combo. I would like JDS to design a portable that is integrated in smaller form factor with lower gain. Objective combo is probably the most transparent source for senstive IEMs, of course you have to lower the gain on the Amp though.
Let me say this. With the Objective Combo, I can discern which iems sound better. That's how transparent it is. I didn't know source was so important until tried out the Objective combo. Anybody that has Objective Combo tell me a source better than it? I can hear a difference with high bitrate files. When you get to high-end, you need to source them right or never reveal the full potential of the iem.
A better cable? hahaha..
they can comfortably be pocketed while ak240 and hm 901 cannot, they are like bricks
Agree with ALRAINBOW... that review is so so wrong.
The only thing it's spot on is that the iRiver software sucks which is why everybody recommends against using it. Otherwise AK120 does album, genre, artist, etc. If you go to the dedicated AK120 thread, you can find a lot of useful information there.
Sorry for OT