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AstellKern’s ACRO CA1000T looks to provide the wow factor for your music

Korean audio brand Astell & Kern has brought out the ACRO CA1000T, a headphone amplifier designed to push the boundaries of sound quality.

The ACRO CA1000T follows on from the ACRO CA1000 headphone amp, and is the world’s first device to feature a dual-tube triple amp system and latest ESS flagship DAC.

The ES9039MPRO DAC from ESS is said to provide a “clear, three-dimensional” sound that improves on the previous model with both power consumption and noise reduced. In terms of how it sounds, you can expect the refreshed circuit design to deliver a “full, detailed sound from deep and rich bass tones to crystal clear high notes.”

Also inside the CA1000T are dual Twin Triode KORG Nutube tubes and a complete balanced circuit that separates left and right channels with two vacuum tubes to create more natural and softer sounds. Listeners can select between the Tube Amp and OP Amp mode to experience the signature sound Astell&Kern provides with its products.

The Teraton Alpha that’s been present in A&K’s recent devices is included to provide distortion-free audio at the highest output. There’s also support for a four-stage Gain Level setting of up to 15Vrms to play nice with the most “sophisticated” in-ear monitors and headphones.

astellkern CA1000T screen

As is typical of Astell&Kern’s products, it’s a device with unique looks, with its brushed grey aluminium body, sharp edges and gold coloured dial. Ports include an XLR and RCA outputs, along with Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth connectivity. A tilted 4.1-inch touchscreen with a 1280 x 720 resolution is integrated to operate the device and change settings. There’s built-in storage of 256GB that can be expanded to 1TB via a microSD.

In terms of audio formats, the CA1000T fully supports DSD512 and 32-bit/768kHz, MQA 16X full decoder via a hardware renderer, as well as aptX HD and LDAC, so it’s well covered for wired and wireless playback at high quality.

Battery life is quoted at 11 hours with a Battery Protection Mode to help maintain full battery life. Battery is charged up to 85% when the mode is enabled and returned to that level when dropping to 80% to avoid any issues from a long-term connection to the power supply.

If you want a this device you’ll have to pay a large sum, the ACRO CA1000T is priced at £2299 / $2,300 / €2599 / AUD$3699.

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