Astell&Kern launches entry level SR25 MKII portable music player

Entry level player gets a boost

by Andy Bassett

Astell&Kern’s popular SR25 Hi-Res portable music player gets a second generation version which improves audio performance, adds to connectivity options and tweaks the design.

Part of the A&norma range which sits underneath the higher level A&futura and A&ultima tiers, the new SR25 MKII music player marks the entry level point for the company’s Hi-Res audio compatible devices and brings new features such as a balanced 4.4mm headphone jack, easier transfer of music files and superior sound reproduction.

The new model retains the same array of high-resolution music formats and sample rates as its predecessor with support for native playback of DSD256 and 32-bit/384KHz PCM Hi-Res audio, along with the latest high-definition Bluetooth wireless LDAC and aptX HD codecs. However, now using Astell&Kern’s latest advanced audio design technology, the company says the SR25 MKII can present more detail in the upper and lower ranges with a deeper, more rounded sound than before.

Newly added is Replay Gain which automatically and uniformly adjusts volume playback from sound sources up to 24-bit/192 kHz without needing to reach for the volume wheel as playlists progress. 

Astell&Kern launches entry level SR25 MKII portable music player
Astell&Kern SR25 MKII portable music player

Although already sporting a 2.5mm (balanced) and 3.5mm (unbalanced) output, the range of headphones and IEMs available to listeners on the SR25 MKII is increased though the addition of a balanced 4.4mm headphone jack which provides improved dynamic range and bass response while supporting a wider soundstage with clearer imaging which reveals more subtle details.

Getting music onto the SR25 MKII is now even easier with AK File Drop which was first introduced in the A&futura SE180 player. This enables users to wirelessly transfer files through a PC, smartphone, or FTP program located on the same network to make music management more convenient. Meanwhile, the BT Sink function connects the SR25 MKII to an external device, such as a smartphone, via Bluetooth, enabling music on these devices to be played back in high-quality on the Astell&Kern player. 

There’s been design changes both inside and out with a new look pattern on the side volume wheel making it more tactile and defined, and the new darker Mercury D. Silver hue standing apart from the original’s Moon Silver livery. Internally, the shield cans used to eliminate electromagnetic interference during operation have been reinforced by applying highly conductive, hyper-pure silver plating. 

Astell&Kern launches entry level SR25 MKII portable music player
Astell&Kern SR25 MKII portable music player

Users who want to protect their SR25 MKII while they’re out and about can take advantage of a special soft and durable polyurethane protective case which offers a barrier against external shocks and scratches and provides reassuring grip. The case  mimics the texture of classic, high-end leather and comes in three finishes : Denim Blue, Orange and Black.

The Astell&Kern A&norma SR25 MKII portable music player is priced £699 ($749 / €799) and will be available early November from www.astellkern.co.uk and local independent dealers. The matching case, also available from November at the same outlets, is priced £59 ($60 / €69).

Source: Press Release
Image Source: Astell&Kern

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