large image

Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Astell and Kern’s A&ultima SP2000T portable player features a next gen triple amp system

Not one to rest on its laurels, it’s been a busy year for Astell&Kern product launches. The South Korean brand isn’t done just yet, introducing the newest member of its A&ultima series in the SP2000T.

The SP2000T (£1,999 / $2,399 / €2,299) builds on the A&ultima SP2000, features the same angular look and is the first of their players to feature a Quad-DAC, Replay Gain function and its new Triple Amp System.

This Triple Amp System allows users to switch between the sonic characteristics of high resolution and dynamism of the OP-amp (operational amp), to the warm-sounding vacuum Tube amp and a Hybrid amp mode that combines the previous two.

To facilitate the vacuum tube amp’s presentation, the SP2000T is equipped with the dual-triode KORG Nutube. This features an anode grid filament structure that consumes less power while delivering the same audio with rich overtones.

The Nutube offers continuous playback time of approximately 30,000 hours and supports the SP2000T’s onboard 2.5mm, 3.5mm and 4.4mm headphone output jacks.

Astell & Kern SP2000T

The SP2000T isn’t lacking for DACs either. It comes equipped with four ES9068AS DACs, with two DACs per channel dedicated for decoding. A&K claim the result is a sound that’s more detailed and balanced, with greater depth and spatial realism.

Other features include the Replay Gain functionality that can automatically and uniformly adjust volume playback from audio sources up to 24-bit/192 kHz, so you don’t need to reach for the volume knob to keep changing the levels.

After the A&futura SE180, the SP2000T is the second player to feature Astell&Kern’s patented Teraton Alpha Sound Solution. As it functions on the SE180, it aims to reproduce audio close to the original sound, optimising power, noise, signal conversion and the sound signature to produce this effect.

A rundown of the other features includes a Full HD colour display on its 5-inch touchscreen (444 ppi). Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity (with 24-bit aptX-HD and LDAC codec support).

The BT Sink function allows the A&ultima SP2000T to connect to a smartphone or other external device via Bluetooth, so music can be played back in higher quality on the SP2000T. There’s also the AK File Drop transfer feature for wirelessly transferring files through a PC, smartphone or FTP program located on the same network.

Storage is 256GB, but if that isn’t enough, the A&ultima SP2000T’s memory and can be expanded up to 1TB via a microSD slot. Battery life is around 9 hours with FLAC files played at 50% volume.

Priced at £1,999 / $2,399 / €2,299, the Astell&Kern A&ultima SP2000T portable music player goes on sale in October from the Astell & Kern site and local independent dealers.

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2004, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have millions of users a month from around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.