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The Astell and Kern AK240 Impressions Thread - Page 10
Gear mentioned in this thread:
Just received my cousin's one from the states.
Man, it cost nearly £500 less than getting it in the UK.
And before people start saying custom charges, he only paid £35 to Fedex for the custom as the value was marked down.
Received mine today, didn't really had the time to listen to it yet, I just updated the firmware.
One minor let down is the fact that english seems to be the only european language supported, no italian for example. Not that such a device is hard to master in a foreign language, but it would have been nice to have as it was there in the AK120.
OK today I was working from home and I got the chance to try out the following combination.
Analog Squared Paper TU-05g
I tried the AK240 on its own and then put it into line-out mode and plugged it into the TU-05g.
Both combinations sound amazing. A few hours of listening to them backed up my growing conviction that the AK240 has a very valve like sound and that the amplifier section is very good indeed. Most of the time the TU-05g did not improve the sound quality, merely changed it.
The AK240 on its own is definitely a winner for clarity and neutrality. The TU-05g added some coloration and made the whole thing more opinionated (in a good way).
I think on the whole I preferred the AK240 on its own - it really does not need any external amplifier - but at one point when using the TU-05g and listening to Rush (A Farewell To Kings) it did lift the base AK240 sound into a rock and roll heaven - the amp was very warmed up by then.
I think this shows that that AK240 is a very good source component as well as a standalone player. I need to get the right cable, but hopefully I will soon be able to connect it to my Unison Research Preludio. I think it will survive very well as a source for my main HiFi.
You must be sick because you got yours from Custom Cables as a previous post.
I took it back last Friday when he ordered his. I didn't believe he would get it so quick and also he would avoid the hefty custom charge on such an expensive item. Might order mine from the same dealer. ;)It is a lot of savings from the UK price.
What does 1.08 improve on? Any perceivable SQ improvement or it's UI improvement?
EDIT: Nvm just saw previous post it's more of a UI stability improvement.
Edited by Bluebear - 3/3/14 at 2:40pm
Edited by my-2000 - 3/3/14 at 6:28pm
Good thing is that I don't really find any perceivable change in the sound with the firmware updates (unlike with AK120 a few change was quite noticeable). Either they manage to kept it more consistent, or I just don't have the golden ears to notice
In fact even with 1.07 I haven't had any UI or stability issues. So basically nothing really changed for me. YMMV.
Yeh, that sounds like a great deal, and serious good luck.
Just a note for others/yourself expecting from States etc. in UK.
Be careful, the following happened to me on an imported amp.
I was pleased with no extra charges but they came later. Yes, the value had been 'adjusted' a bit but there may be other charges to follow. When it happened to me I was gutted, because I was jubilant to start with. Why FedEx did it that way around to me before import assessment I've no idea. As I say this was just my experience and I wish all who do the direct import route the best of luck. Don't know what FedEx would have done if I'd not paid. A very similar price, £1,600, is available from Australia.
Also, think about warranty issues.
I'm not standing up either way because I think the UK price STINKS and we, in oh so many area are just taken as mugs.
I've started to use the Pro EQ and I'm really enjoying the pure musicality of what it brings. Presumably A&K have a suite of settings, based on genre, read from the file tag? It certainly works for me. I like it.
Edited by Rumpelstiltskin - 3/4/14 at 10:07am
so I've had two days of working from home and listening almost solidly to my AK240.
All I can say is wow!
Somebody on the Calyx M thread admonished Warren Chi and Michael Laing for being over excited about this device in their review, but, frankly, if you do not get excited about this device then what are you doing on the Head-Fi website?
The AK240 is amazing and I can really understand Astell&Kern positioning it as a hybrid portable/home HiFi system. It is good enough in spades. I paired it with my Unison Research Preludio and I think it definitely gives my Naim NDX streamer a run for the money. I have only had 10 minutes listening to that, but it was obviously well up to the job.
This is a revolutionary device; the only portable device I have used (so far) that can really work as a high-end Hi-Fi source.
I have valve amps - It loves valve amps - I wonder what the A&K valve amp they have been teasing will be like? Will it be affordable?
- The Astell and Kern AK240 Impressions Thread
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