Astell & Kern has teamed up with US headphone manufacturer Campfire Audio for the AK Solaris X, an in-ear monitor designed and tuned especially for Astell & Kern.
The AK Solaris X (£1499 / $1500 / €1799) is based on Campfire’s Solaris in-ear monitor from 2020. It’s been hand assembled in Portland, Oregon, and features a custom-made balance armature driver and a dynamic driver hybrid system packed alongside Campfire’s patented Tuned Acoustic Expansion Chamber (T.A.E.C.) technology and a 3D Printed Acoustic Chamber.
The aim of all that tech is to reproduce music as the artist intended, and considering it’s been tuned for A&K, it’d be a good fit for the brand’s high resolution portable music players.
The custom-made balanced armature driver is actually smaller than the one in the original Solaris, but it’s said to still offer a wideband performance for high frequency extension that Campfire claims doesn’t produce sibilance or fatigue.
Working alongside Campfire Audio’s patented T.A.E.C. technology, the performance of the driver is optimised by adjusting the volume of space available in front of the driver, providing a direct passage to the ear. It’s said that the new driver “delivers unsurpassed clarity and a smooth, extended top end.”
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Another BA driver deals with mid-range frequencies, while the custom 10mm dynamic driver is optimised for the Polarity Tuned Chamber. It works by deploying particular volume cavities in front and behind the dynamic driver, so bigger sounds can be drawn from smaller drivers. With the AK SOLARIS X it should help to deliver “a deeper and more refined mid-to-low frequency” performance.
Other aspects include a frequency range of 5Hz – 20kHz, a Pure Silver Litz Cable to help facilitate the higher level of audio performance and an eco-friendly cork case for long lasting durability.
In the UK the AK Solaris X is available exclusively in-store from Harrods and Selfridges starting mid-July. It’s priced at £1499 / $1500 / €1799.
The AK Solaris X is not the only Astell & Kern news. They’ve announced that the Kann Alpha portable music player is available in a new Urbanely Blue edition, and now includes support for the Roon multi-room music platform. The price is still £1099 for that model.