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Astell & Kern SR15: A&norma Impressions & Reviews

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by pitch_black, Jul 29, 2018.
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  1. bgtip
    That's right but once you've heard SR15 you're hooked...

    SPKM battery life is 10 hrs, verified by twister6 review, but not with balanced out (which I use).
  2. bgtip
    That clears the subject.
    Would you please share how do you compare the SPKM and SR15 sound? I've read some opinions that SPKM sound signature is completely different to SR15?
  3. dakchi
    I would say that the notes are more clear and separated in SPKM and the trebble is more precise and open. Overall, there isn't a huge difference between the 2 IF you use the balanced output of SR15; at least not a difference that justifies the huge difference in price. Initially I compared the 2 with SE output and the difference was huge; but then when I received the balanced cables, the sound was much improved on SR15; to the point that I am hesitating to send SPKM back to Amazon. As a reviewer said in Youtube, SPKM is very expensive for what it delivers, and I do agree with this. The difference in sound with SR15 is very subtle. The battery of SPKM takes 3 hours to be charged (I don't call this quick charge because my phone has the same capacity and it charges in 1,5 hours). The battery is not better than SR15. The only advantage is the big screen. SR15 screen is very small and it is sometimes a problem (for example when you push the back button). Should I pay 1700$ more for the bigger screen and subtle sound difference? imo, it is not worth it
    bgtip and Tsukuyomi like this.
  4. Tsukuyomi
    Id be curious about that battery test. I never use wifi or steaming songs on my daps. Only use wifi to update firmware and thats it.

    Also, 98% of my listening is through SE. I rarely ever use 2.5
    bgtip likes this.
  5. Tsukuyomi
    Whats your opinion on the SE100? I know the SP1000M is a lot more expensive. I was considering the SE100 as well as the SR15.
  6. dakchi
    Sorry I don't have the SE100 and did not listen to it; but from what I heard, it is very different from other A&K DAPs
    Tsukuyomi likes this.
  7. abitdeef
    At first I thought the balanced sounded better, but then after testing a while with an adapter I like the SE better. Of course you can use what you want- we all hear differently but all balanced outs use more battery of course.

    Unless you get Sony zx300 then you wouldn’t have a problem because of the class D amp. Also what power bank were you using? I can charge my SR15 about 3 times with mine and that would take me comfortably anywhere in the world even using balanced.

    And of course I never listen to music on the whole flight anyways- I usually sleep some on long flights and play games sometimes.
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2019
  8. abitdeef
    I will do it sir, at my normal ‘loud’ listening levels- 95 volume. Just let me top my baby off. Files will be flac DSD hi res and some MP3- WMA also.
  9. Tsukuyomi

    i'm still currently on the fence between the A&K SR15 and the Sony WM1A. i know the price/status of either is vastly different. but im just not sure. the appeal of the 20-30 hour battery on the sony while using FLAC 16/44.1 is amazingly intoxicating. i do listen to a lot of music.
    but i'm scared the battery life on the SR15 will only be around 6-7 hrs at best.

    im wondering if i should wait and save up more for the sony, or jump the gun and order the SR15 this week :S
  10. Leetransform25
    Wouldn't the ZX300 be more comparable since it's at a more similar price range? Or is it not as good in your opinion? I'm not sure whether I should go for the SR15 or the ZX300
  11. abitdeef
    Decisions, decisions :wink: Of course a lot depends on how much you access your screen too. But yes with the Sony you get stellar battery life, but you can’t stream or listen to internet radiio either.

    Of course you could buy SR15 and use it at home and buy say Sony nw A45 or FiiO M6 and use that on the road or for active use and still be cheaper than the 1A.
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2019
  12. Tsukuyomi
    I did consider the ZX300, but then found out the SE + 4.4 power output is higher on the WM1A than the ZX300. so, thats why im considering the WM1A instead. but ive read the SR15 also has good SE + 2.5 power output. higher than the ZX300. so that finally elimitated the zx300 from the running for me. and im only focusing on the sr15 or wm1a.
    bgtip and Leetransform25 like this.
  13. Tsukuyomi
    thats not an issue for me lol, i never stream or internet radio. and if i do ever choose too, i'll just plug headphones into my Samsung Note 9.
  14. abitdeef
    I never did before but I’m really enjoying tidal masters on SR15- I got a free 3 month trial. I tried my phone but it doesn’t sound as good :wink:

    Do you not have a Sony store where you can demo wm 1A? You could then order a SR15 from some place with a good return policy and compare them.
  15. Tsukuyomi
    unfortunately there isnt a Sony store in my city nor province. i'd have to take a 6-8hr drive to the next city to find one and then even then they may not have the wm1a for demo as its rare.

    if i were to buy the SR15 it would be from a audio store on the other side of the country. but jason told me the repair policy for A&K is global from any official retailer and it gets sent and repaired to their facility in Germany.

    if i were to buy the Sony, it would be from amazon canada. :p so yeah
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