ASTELL & KERN A&ULTIMA SP2000 VS iPhone 12 Pro + Mojo
Dec 24, 2020 at 11:11 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 19

MasonSafari

New Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 3, 2018
Posts
24
Likes
5
Location
Sydney
Hi All

I am about getting CAMPFIRE AUDIO SOLARIS 2020 and I already own Chord Mojo and very happy with it ...so if we forget about money ( in a perfect world I am not in ) , is getting ASTELL & KERN A&ULTIMA SP2000 making huge improvements over using it with iPhone 12 Pro + Mojo ?

I will be using mostly Tidal

Thanks in advance
Mason
 
Dec 25, 2020 at 9:27 AM Post #2 of 19

Randy Myers

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Sep 1, 2016
Posts
246
Likes
159
Location
Nipomo, CA
The DAC and and audio performance of the Astell & Kern portables are the best in the world in my view. The SP2000 is therefore the best portable in the world in my view. The iPhone cannot provide the music to the DAC at an even close level as the A&K. And the DACs built into the SP2000 are about as good as money can buy.

Playing mainly Tidal will not allow you to experience how amazing that unit is but it will give you the best you can get in a portable with Tidal. Playing high rez music carried on its 512 GB storage will blow you away. And if you really want to see it shines play some DSD files through it. That unit can handle all the way up to DSD512.

I am on my second A&K now. The first still works amazingly and it is now in another person's hands. The one I recently got, the SE200 is fantastic and with the Abyss Diana Phi headphones it is simply amazing! I never thought a portable digital music player could be so good!
 
Last edited:
Dec 25, 2020 at 9:02 PM Post #3 of 19

MasonSafari

New Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 3, 2018
Posts
24
Likes
5
Location
Sydney
The DAC and and audio performance of the Astell & Kern portables are the best in the world in my view. The SP2000 is therefore the best portable in the world in my view. The iPhone cannot provide the music to the DAC at an even close level as the A&K. And the DACs built into the SP2000 are about as good as money can buy.

Playing mainly Tidal will not allow you to experience how amazing that unit is but it will give you the best you can get in a portable with Tidal. Playing high rez music carried on its 512 GB storage will blow you away. And if you really want to see it shines play some DSD files through it. That unit can handle all the way up to DSD512.

I am on my second A&K now. The first still works amazingly and it is now in another person's hands. The one I recently got, the SE200 is fantastic and with the Abyss Diana Phi headphones it is simply amazing! I never thought a portable digital music player could be so good!
Thanks Randy
so I assumed when I use Mojo then iPhone effect to the music quality would be eliminated as Mojo will have DAC and Amp...
also is there any point to use SP 2000 as source to other DAC/ Headphone AMP like Dave instead of using windows or Mac as source ? if that's a possibility I will have more reason to get SP2000...
 
Dec 26, 2020 at 2:13 AM Post #4 of 19

Randy Myers

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Sep 1, 2016
Posts
246
Likes
159
Location
Nipomo, CA
The playback capability is far better on the A&K and the on board DAC is dual top of the line AKM. The amplifier is superb on Astell & Kern. The iPhone is not in the same league for playing music. There is a night and day difference. I have not directly compared to a Mojo, however there is a ton more involved then the DAC. By the way, the SP2000 has a better DAC. You would be hard pressed to find any portable that will rival. Yes they can also provide music to other systems such as desktop systems. They can even be utilized as the DAC. However I would believe your Dave might be a touch better 😁. I would love a SP2000, but I could not afford one now so as an upgrade to my previous A&K I got a SE200, I really like my SE200 and it drives my Abyss headphones wonderfully!
 
Last edited:
Dec 26, 2020 at 7:39 AM Post #5 of 19

MasonSafari

New Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 3, 2018
Posts
24
Likes
5
Location
Sydney
The playback capability is far better on the A&K and the on board DAC is dual top of the line AKM. The amplifier is superb on Astell & Kern. The iPhone is not in the same league for playing music. There is a night and day difference. I have not directly compared to a Mojo, however there is a ton more involved then the DAC. By the way, the SP2000 has a better DAC. You would be hard pressed to find any portable that will rival. Yes they can also provide music to other systems such as desktop systems. They can even be utilized as the DAC. However I would believe your Dave might be a touch better 😁. I would love a SP2000, but I could not afford one now so as an upgrade to my previous A&K I got a SE200, I really like my SE200 and it drives my Abyss headphones wonderfully!
Thanks Randy
as there are some end of year promo for SP2000 I might get it this week...BTW I am not even close to rich by any measure...I wanted to renew my Car after 10 years and I justified I would spend the money on something I really like and enjoy and drive with my still good 2010 car 😁 ...I also might get CAMPFIRE AUDIO SOLARIS 2020 to use mainly with SP2000, did you ever try this or know how good is this ?
 
Dec 26, 2020 at 9:35 AM Post #7 of 19

Randy Myers

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Sep 1, 2016
Posts
246
Likes
159
Location
Nipomo, CA
If I wanted to save the money I would purchase a SE200.... oh wait, I did. I have had a few portables and in my view Astell & Kern is in a league of their own (this is my second one). I believe the SP2000 is amazing and the best of the best, but I was commenting on this because you had asked about it. I believe my SE200 is one of the best also, for considerably less (but the SP2000 is the best for the person who wants the best).

I am not familiar with the Campfire's. I have had a few different headphones, McIntosh MHP1000, Audeze EL8, Sennheiser HD800S, MrSpeakers Ether, KEF M500, Focal Clear, Audeze iSine 10, Audeze iSine 20, Audeze LCD-i4, etc. The Abyss are my favorite, and I feel far superior to all of the previous headphones, earphones that I have had.
 
Last edited:
Dec 27, 2020 at 4:19 AM Post #8 of 19

Tristy

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Nov 21, 2018
Posts
3,032
Likes
4,698
Location
.
Another SE200 user here and I got a real good deal on it and it’s by far the best sound I’ve heard. Best purchase I’ve made in audio so far tbh... a clear and big step up from Cube. I’ve had the mojo before and it blows it away. I’d say the mojo was more in line with my SR25 but even then I’d say the dap beats it for balance and overall (mojo was too rolled off for me on the top end).
 
Last edited:
Dec 27, 2020 at 5:58 AM Post #9 of 19

HiFiHawaii808

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Sep 8, 2020
Posts
4,468
Likes
9,025
Location
Honolulu
Hi All

I am about getting CAMPFIRE AUDIO SOLARIS 2020 and I already own Chord Mojo and very happy with it ...so if we forget about money ( in a perfect world I am not in ) , is getting ASTELL & KERN A&ULTIMA SP2000 making huge improvements over using it with iPhone 12 Pro + Mojo ?

I will be using mostly Tidal

Thanks in advance
Mason
I think you are making the wrong comparison. You should be comparing the SP2000 to a Chord Hugo 2 with either a 2go or a lower priced DAP connected to the Hugo 2. I think that will be a better option to consider.

I own the Chord Hugo 2/2go and I use it to drive my Vision Ear VE8 IEMs. It's sound is glorious. I am going to pick up a HIBY R6 2020 to pair with my Hugo 2. I would love to do a shoot out with that setup vs the SP2000. I like it's chances a lot.
 
Dec 29, 2020 at 11:21 PM Post #10 of 19

MasonSafari

New Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 3, 2018
Posts
24
Likes
5
Location
Sydney
Another SE200 user here and I got a real good deal on it (less than a third of the SP2000 retail) and it’s by far the best sound I’ve heard. Best purchase I’ve made in audio so far tbh... a clear and big step up from Cube. I’ve had the mojo before and it blows it away. I’d say the mojo was more in line with my SR25 but even then I’d say the dap beats it for balance and overall (mojo was too rolled off for me on the top end).

Thanks Tristy
what are you using with SE200, which IEM? also are you listing to the high res files or Tidal?
 
Dec 29, 2020 at 11:24 PM Post #11 of 19

MasonSafari

New Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 3, 2018
Posts
24
Likes
5
Location
Sydney
I think you are making the wrong comparison. You should be comparing the SP2000 to a Chord Hugo 2 with either a 2go or a lower priced DAP connected to the Hugo 2. I think that will be a better option to consider.

I own the Chord Hugo 2/2go and I use it to drive my Vision Ear VE8 IEMs. It's sound is glorious. I am going to pick up a HIBY R6 2020 to pair with my Hugo 2. I would love to do a shoot out with that setup vs the SP2000. I like it's chances a lot.
I wanted to buy Hugo 2 then TT2 and finally could get a pre owned Dave ( instead of renewing my car ) ...I want the SP2000 for the portable and mainly with the Campfire Solaris IEM... but I would like to try the SP2000 to replace my WIN 10 source to push high res files to my Dave... I expect to have a better result , what do you think?
 
Dec 30, 2020 at 5:46 AM Post #12 of 19

Tristy

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Nov 21, 2018
Posts
3,032
Likes
4,698
Location
.
Thanks Tristy
what are you using with SE200, which IEM? also are you listing to the high res files or Tidal?
It pairs well with all IEMs I have. It’s a particularly good pairing with the Legend X. But works great with the Solaris SE, Hero, Dorado 2020, Sony IER-Z1R
 
Dec 30, 2020 at 7:16 AM Post #15 of 19

MasonSafari

New Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 3, 2018
Posts
24
Likes
5
Location
Sydney
Just stay with what makes you happy as long as you can.
Thanks Kenjamin for the advise
it sees you own sp2000, how it pairs with Tia Fourte ? how is Tia Fourte compare to Solaris or legend X...I just want to buy one and hold it for years ...I know it should be a personal preferences but I appreciate if you tell me how do you think .
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top