Astell & Kern AK70 MKII with dual DAC
Jun 20, 2018 at 10:29 AM Post #856 of 1,057

Pandaemonaeon

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I had the Pioneer XDP-100R & bought the AK70 MK II & to my ears the Pioneer XDP-100R beat the AK70MKII hands down.

The AK7 MKII was dull, lifeless & killed the music. I took mine back asap & don't regret it one bit.

Interesting. So basically, the AK70 MKii isn't much of a step up (if any at all) from the 100 or 100ii? How about to the older ak240?
 
Jun 20, 2018 at 1:20 PM Post #858 of 1,057

My Little Phony

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I had the Pioneer XDP-100R & bought the AK70 MK II & to my ears the Pioneer XDP-100R beat the AK70MKII hands down.

The AK7 MKII was dull, lifeless & killed the music. I took mine back asap & don't regret it one bit.

Dear home44,

your model of the AK70 MKII must have been defective. Out of the box without any EQ settings (reminder to iRiver to actually fix the EQ) the AK70 MKII is able to bring music alive with every soundcharacteristic you want.

For Example:
- punchy, deep, layerd bass
- rousing voices
- sparkling, deatialed highs
- firm nice sounding mids
- etc... (add whatever you prefer)

There is no day & night difference in dac-sound qualities if the technical overall implementation is not totally messed up. The differences regarding sound quality of good players are mostly small nuances.

The magic happens with proper headphones.

If i want the Ak70 MkII to sound dull and lifeless i connect the worst sounding headphones to it so i get a music presentation that reminds me about listening to someone rattling small stones in a tin adding a frightened rat to the spectacle.

But i like a joyful musical ride that dont lack details and gives me nice dephts. So i plug in for example the Yamaha EPH-100 in-ears. Awesome. Like with the most other daps too.

There is definitely no dull or lifeless sound signature the iRiver technicians build into this dap to annoy us.

Thats why i first said that your device must have been broken.

The 2nd reason for your impression about the AK70 MKII could be that your previous daps sound frequencies were unnaturally hefty tuned and bloated.

I actually have a Hidizs AP60 II and Plenue D on my desk. Did you try any of those players? If one of them dont sound dull or liveless to your ears be sure that there isnt a great audible difference between the mentioned dacs and a normal working AK70 MK II.

I know we all have different ears but if the AK70 MK II is so obvious dull sounding in comparison to the XDP-100R i should be able hear this too. I will give the latter a try when i have the possibility to do so.


Dear Pandaemonaeon,

just order and listen to an A & K or other model you have in mind. Don't trust my ears and don't trust the ears of home44. Please do me a favour. If you get the same impression that the A & K is dull and lifeless sounding with your preferred headphones please let me know.

If you can enjoy your music only using an EQ, please inform the iRiver support that you were about thinking of getting an A & K dap but the missing EQ was putting you off.
 
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Jun 20, 2018 at 1:29 PM Post #859 of 1,057

/guy

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Your model of the AK70 MKII must have been defective. Out of the box without any EQ settings (reminder to iRiver to actually fix the EQ) the AK70 MKII is able to bring music alive with every soundcharacteristic you want.
[del]

I know we all have different ears but if the AK70 MK II is so obvious dull sounding in comparison to the XDP-100R i should be able hear this too. I will give the latter a try when i have the possibility to do so.

i have the ak70m2 & 300r as well but i haven't yet compared them because they both drain battery so fast they are never charged at the same time! so in that respect they are equal. :)

but i think having both is useful. they both have balanced outputs and mostly support the same formats. the pioneer is full-on android, can play mqa, and you can load other players and streaming services. but the ak70 is so compact and easy to use since it's pared down to the essentials that i use it much more than the pioneer.

and yes, i realize being able to use all the android apps on the 300r comes at a price--battery life--so i've removed nearly all the apps i first loaded it up with in my enthusiasm but now i have the mk70 i'm going to add them back and use it more as an android device since i don't have an android phone or tablet.

i would try to make a quality comparison, but my old ears are pretty well toast after the aircraft carrier and years of shooting sports and a bad sinus infection years ago which wiped out a lot of bass and unless the difference is night vs day, i doubt i'd notice much.

/guy
 
Jun 20, 2018 at 2:04 PM Post #860 of 1,057

Smurfs2010

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I have the AK70 MKII and the Onkyo DPX1 (same as 300R?).... I find the Onkyo to be more appealing, however, the MKII does have redeeming qualities. As I mentioned few pages back, the forward sound of the MKII is what I really enjoy. I think people get stuck on price and expectation of the MKII. It is what it is, yes, it's expensive.
 
Jun 20, 2018 at 2:29 PM Post #861 of 1,057

R7photo

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I second that,AK mk2 is amazing dap,,
I pair via balanced out to AK Rosie’s updated 8 balance armatures and sq is amazing
I believe key is good pair of iem via balance out,,

I love the updated Rosie’s which I believe are a hidden gem,,,

Cheers
 
Jun 20, 2018 at 3:49 PM Post #862 of 1,057

judomaniak57

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I just got my AK MK2. I play it thru my brytson headphone amp via the mini connection, and listen thru my focal elears. I really like what I am hearing. coming from a 10 year old pioneer elite sacd player I find the ak mk2 sound very open with great midrange , good bass and good clean treble. I went with the ak mk2 b/c I am to cheap to by a dac and a source etc.... this way I down load my music and play. very simple setup that sounds fantastic
 
Jun 20, 2018 at 8:04 PM Post #863 of 1,057

Pandaemonaeon

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Dear Pandaemonaeon,

just order and listen to an A & K or other model you have in mind. Don't trust my ears and don't trust the ears of home44. Please do me a favour. If you get the same impression that the A & K is dull and lifeless sounding with your preferred headphones please let me know.

If you can enjoy your music only using an EQ, please inform the iRiver support that you were about thinking of getting an A & K dap but the missing EQ was putting you off.

I used to have the AK100ii and I thought it was the best DAP I've ever had and in some ways even superior to the DP-X1 sound-wise although the latter could retrieve a lot more detail but perhaps due to the dual DACs. I figured an AK-tuned device with a similar implementation (like the AK70 mkii) would be better.

And I never use EQ so it won't be an issue for me.
 
Jun 21, 2018 at 5:46 AM Post #864 of 1,057

home44

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Dear home44,

your model of the AK70 MKII must have been defective. Out of the box without any EQ settings (reminder to iRiver to actually fix the EQ) the AK70 MKII is able to bring music alive with every soundcharacteristic you want.

For Example:
- punchy, deep, layerd bass
- rousing voices
- sparkling, deatialed highs
- firm nice sounding mids
- etc... (add whatever you prefer)

There is no day & night difference in dac-sound qualities if the technical overall implementation is not totally messed up. The differences regarding sound quality of good players are mostly small nuances.

The magic happens with proper headphones.

If i want the Ak70 MkII to sound dull and lifeless i connect the worst sounding headphones to it so i get a music presentation that reminds me about listening to someone rattling small stones in a tin adding a frightened rat to the spectacle.

But i like a joyful musical ride that dont lack details and gives me nice dephts. So i plug in for example the Yamaha EPH-100 in-ears. Awesome. Like with the most other daps too.

There is definitely no dull or lifeless sound signature the iRiver technicians build into this dap to annoy us.

Thats why i first said that your device must have been broken.

The 2nd reason for your impression about the AK70 MKII could be that your previous daps sound frequencies were unnaturally hefty tuned and bloated.

I actually have a Hidizs AP60 II and Plenue D on my desk. Did you try any of those players? If one of them dont sound dull or liveless to your ears be sure that there isnt a great audible difference between the mentioned dacs and a normal working AK70 MK II.

I know we all have different ears but if the AK70 MK II is so obvious dull sounding in comparison to the XDP-100R i should be able hear this too. I will give the latter a try when i have the possibility to do so.


Dear Pandaemonaeon,

just order and listen to an A & K or other model you have in mind. Don't trust my ears and don't trust the ears of home44. Please do me a favour. If you get the same impression that the A & K is dull and lifeless sounding with your preferred headphones please let me know.

If you can enjoy your music only using an EQ, please inform the iRiver support that you were about thinking of getting an A & K dap but the missing EQ was putting you off.

I used both the Klipcsh X12i & Etymotic ER4-SR Studio Reference & couldn't get any life in to the music. No top end & just a muffled sound. I Not dissing the AK70 MKII it just wasn't for me. I don't think my unit was defective at all.

I have the Onkyo DP-X1 & think it's much better sounding & more to my tastes, which is what Pandaemonaeon asked at the top of the page.

Enjoy

 
Jun 21, 2018 at 9:22 AM Post #865 of 1,057

Bosk

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I used both the Klipcsh X12i & Etymotic ER4-SR Studio Reference & couldn't get any life in to the music. No top end & just a muffled sound. I Not dissing the AK70 MKII it just wasn't for me. I don't think my unit was defective at all.

I have the Onkyo DP-X1 & think it's much better sounding & more to my tastes, which is what Pandaemonaeon asked at the top of the page.

Enjoy

Were you listening to the AK70 MKII through the 3.5mm jack?
 
Jun 21, 2018 at 10:50 AM Post #867 of 1,057

Pandaemonaeon

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Another question: What are some IEMs that have great synergy with this one? I have my eye on an either the Xelento, SE846, and CA Nova, but not sure if there are others in that price range that ae in the conversation. For what it's worth, I'm into warm sound signatures and plan on using the balanced jack primarily.
 
Jun 21, 2018 at 11:57 AM Post #868 of 1,057

koziakauzu

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The 846 sound amazing with it, but with balanced cable. I used the regular 3.5mm cable for few minutes and it lacked power, dynamics, etc. Maybe the dullness is justified here.

I also recently bought a pair of Xiaomi hybrids (unbalanced) and they are quite fun, it can brings some forced EQ in the bass department at least, and for the price, they deserve to be tried. If you want some crazy bass...

That's my opinion though. In this thread and others both the AK70ii and 846 are "overpriced, overrated, not worth the praise, so many better alternatives out there"...so who can be trusted haha... I enjoy them both very much.

I had the Onkyo DP-X1 and Granbeat, they sounded....excellent, I guess but they lacked character to my ears, I was bored.
That's like riding a Honda or a Ducati, the Honda is the logical choice on so many levels but.....
 

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