Astell&Kern launches KANN MAX music player and HC2 Hi-Fi USB Dual DAC

Astell&Kern KANN MAX continues to be a portable music player model with a size and capacity of up to 15Vrms when listening through the balance port. It is also equipped with aptX HD and LDAC Bluetooth codecs for high-quality wireless music transmission. In addition, the digital audio player also supports 3.5mm, balanced 2.5mm, and 4.4mm connectors.

Astell&Kern KANN MAX portable audio player

This is the first Astell&Kern portable audio player product to be equipped with four ES9038Q2M DACs at the same time, promising clean, detailed sound. KANN MAX can decode native DSD 512, MQA, and many other Hi-res formats. All combined with exclusive TERATON ALPHA technology to ensure the best sound quality.

KANN MAX is equipped with a new feature called BT Sink that allows the device to be used as a Bluetooth receiver. In addition, the AK File Drop feature also allows users to copy music files wirelessly.

The digital music player packs 64 GB of internal storage and a 1 micro SD card slot that supports up to 1TB. It has a battery life of 13 hours of continuous use.

Along with this portable audio player, Astell&Kern has also introduced an upgraded version of the HC2 USB-C Dual DAC PEE52 cable with several changes such as being equipped with a balanced 4.4mm output, greater output power up to 4Vrms, and better compatibility with both Android and iOS devices (with Lightning adapter). However, the HC2 USB-C Dual DAC PEE52 continues to use the pair of Cirrus Logic CS43198 DACs that were present in the PEE51 version.

Astell&Kern HC2 Hi-Fi USB Dual DAC

As mentioned above, the biggest change in PEE52 is the addition of a balanced 4.4mm output for an impressive capacity of up to 4Vrms. The two Cirrus Logic CS43198 DAC chips are still retained in general, which is not surprising because their performance is already too good, no need to replace anything. It is machined with a full aluminum body (adapter part) and uses ultra-high purity pure copper core wire.

Pricing and availability

Astell&Kern KANN MAX is already listed on the Bhphotovideo.com store at $1,299, but pre-orders will start from June 1st, and the release date has been set for June 20, 2022.

The HC2 USB-C Dual DAC PEE52 is compatible with Android and iOS (with a Lightning adapter), it is also listed on the Bhphotovideo.com store at $249.

Updated on July 6, 2022: It is now available on the Amazon.co.uk store at £1,199.

Recently, Astell&Kern introduced their first truly wireless stereo earbuds, the AK UW100. The new Astell and Kern TWS earphones come with a 32-bit DAC, Bluetooth aptX Adaptive, and active noise cancellation, the manufacturer promises exciting equipment, and it costs $299 / £249.

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