Astell&Kern introduces A&norma SR35 and AK ZERO2

There’s plenty going on over at Astell&Kern with the launch of its A&norma SR35 media player and AK ZERO2 in-ears. The media player is the successor to the company’s SR25 MKII (HFC 489), boasts a claimed 20 hours of continuous playtime and deploys the first Dual/Quad DAC switching mode in the A&norma series – enabling users to adjust the sound and power output while improving power efficiency. The brand’s patented Teraton Alpha technology promises balanced dynamics and the SR35 is also the first in the A&norma series to be equipped with New Generation AMP technology. Featured in the latest high-end A&ultima and A&futura range, the in-house amp has been designed to eliminate noise at a high-power output: “to ensure listeners experience the clearest possible, distortion-free sound”.

The new technology boasts a two-step gain mode and it comes with a crimson-themed, intuitive user interface featuring a new album artwork search function. A new AK File Drop mode makes it easy to do wireless transfers so music can be moved via a PC, smartphone or FTP program located on the same network.

The SR35 is equipped with wi-fi and is compatible with a wide range of streaming and Roon Ready services so that music from any external device can now be played back in high quality via a new BT Sink function. The SR35 can additionally natively play and stream Hi-Fi MQA tracks, thanks to its full MQA 8x decoder support. The SR35 is £800.

Astell&Kern explains: “The bold line at the side of the device that widens at the bottom symbolises a warrior’s sword of battle while the concave surface of the refined volume crown represents a shield. These shapes combine in the design of the SR35 to indicate the strength and consistency of the unrivalled audio performance.”

Meanwhile, the company is also launching its AK ZERO2 in-ear monitors. Handcrafted in Japan and clad in Astell&Kern’s signature angled aluminium, A&K reveals the earphones: “combine different types of driver technology to optimise audio performance across all sound frequencies”.

The in-ears’ micro rectangular Planar Dynamic Driver has been developed to deliver high frequencies and they also feature two pairs of Coil Parameter Dual Custom BA drivers to reproduce both full range and mid-to-low range frequencies. There is also a 10mm Dynamic Driver with Piezoelectric Transducer technology for both super-tweeter and bass extension duties.

Each driver is placed in an acoustic chamber designed to eliminate any unnecessary movement and resonance of the drivers for permanently stable performance. Other elements include a four-core oxygen-free copper cable to the MMCX connectors, five pairs of silicone ear tips, one pair of foam tips and a carrying case. It’s all priced at £1,100.

Available to buy now, you can find out more about Astell&Kern's A&norma SR35 media player here and the AK ZERO2 in-ears here.