Over the past few years, Astell and Kern have remained the best portable music player you can buy. Its Kann player has twice been recognized as being the ‘best portable music player over £750’ currently on the market. Today, Astell and kern introducing a second model at the Tokyo Fujiya Avic Spring Headphone Festival, the US brand have launched the Kann Cube.
The previous Kann player got a huge 6,200mAh battery, a sweetly melodic AKM AK4490 DAC, a beefy amplifier that can feed the most demanding of headphones, and USB-C charging. The device had cost you a nice large amount which was $999. Don’t expect this new model to come any lower, the Kann cube unveiled at a price $1499, the spectacularly high-specced second generation of the Kann line.
All the Kann series of devices go under the tagline of “one player to rule them all.” Talking about the Kann cube which has got 7,400mAh battery, two ESS ES9038PRO Sabre DACs, 128GB of expandable storage, a new quad-core CPU, and USB-C fast charging. The display is a 5-inch 720p panel, which might sound inadequate but it will overcome as the Kann cube now supports lossless MQA tracks on Tidal which you can select.
As far as the amp is concerned, this device almost doubles the output of the original Kann, which was already one of the most potent PMPs available. Kann cube is twice the power of its previous model because of the balanced connection (12Vrms vs 7Vrms), along with a new amplifier design which ensures that higher power capability doesn’t compromise on low distortion levels. Users can also select low, mid or high gain modes depending on the headphones connected.
Though users can directly download Tidal and other music streaming services such as Amazon Music, Spotify, Qobuz and Deezer onto the player. With supported apps, offline music can also be downloaded and stored. Apart from the 3.5mm headphone output, a 5-pin mini XLR socket is onboard for easily hooking up to a hi-fi system. Framing the 5in screen is a familiarly with an impressively striking aluminum design.