Product Information: AK70

Music Friend In My Pocket, AK70

24bit 192kHz bit to bit Playback

The AK70's DAC, based on market-proven CS4398 chips of Cirrus Logic, has been used for years in Hi-Fi audios and the second-generation Astell&Kern devices.

The AK70 plays back 24bit 192kHz signals into bit-to-bit type.
32bit audio is downsampled using a sample-rate converter. In addition, DSD 64/128 can be played back through conversion to PCM.

* 32bit, 384kHz is downsampled to 24bit, 192kHz, and 32bit, 352kHz is downsampled to 24bit, 176kHz for playback.
* DSD 64/128 is converted via DSD-to-PCM to PCM 24bit, 176kHz for playback.

AK70's Diverse Output Types - Balanced Output

The AK70 supports the 2.5-mm 4-pole balanced output (2.3 Vrms) that has been in use since the second generation of the Astell&Kern players.

Unlike the unbalanced type, the balanced output type is capable of removing noise (common mode noise) that can occur in “signal + inverting ampli

fier signal” and has the strength of increasing output due to its double transmitting signals.
The AK70 can be used with a variety of balanced earphones and headphones made for Astell&Kern. It can also support the 3.5-mm 3-pole unbalanced output (2.3 Vrms), with compatibility with a variety of Hi-Fi earphones and headphones.

Variety of Output Types of AK70 - USB Audio

The AK70 supports USB audio digital out, first among Astell&Kern devices.

You can connect diverse digital-input portable amps through USB to the AK70. The AK70 can transfer DSD in native through DoP. It can also convert DSD into PCM for output for portable amps that do not support DoP.

* USB audio output is available only when digital input is possible through USB.
* DoP (DSD over PCM) : This is a standard for transferring DSD data to USB interface. This standard sends DSD data by mounting them onto PCM data frames.
* In order to link the AK70 with a portable amp, one needs OTG cable, which is not included in the AK70 package.
* The cable connecting OTG cable with a portable amp differs depending on the specs of the amp, >which is not included in the AK70 package.

Variety of Output Types of AK70 - USB DAC

The AK70 can be used with a USB DAC that can double as an embedded sound card by connecting with a PC/Mac through the USB port.
In the case of using the PC's embedded sound card, one may have to go through a complicated process to play back DSD data. In contrast, the AK70 can do so simply by connecting with the PC.

In the case of using the AK70 as a USB DAC, it can support up to 24-bit 96 kHz bit to bit, providing much richer sound through superior ambience and resolution way beyond the limits of an embedded sound card.

* When using the AK70 as a USB DAC, its PEQ settings are not applied, and output up to 24bit, 96kHz is supported.
* DSD 64/128 is converted via DSD-to-PCM for playback.


The AK70 can allow users to rip CDs with ease by linking with the AK CD-RIPPER.
By inheriting from the AK500N, it supports the CD track error correction feature and the meta data (ID3TAG) auto input feature using Gracenote's database without any change.

* The AK CD-RIPPER may not be properly recognized when using a power supply adapter rated at less than 5V 2A.

The AK70's Network - AK Connect

The AK70 comes equipped with the AK Connect feature that can be connected with network-ready Astell&Kern devices.

It is also appointed with wireless networking DLNA (Ver. 1.0), which makes it easy to work with NAS/PC on the same network and through an AK Connect app supporting smartphone/tablet computer.

DMP (Digital Media Player)
Finds a list of content on a media server for selection and playback.

DMC (Digital Media Controller)
Finds a list of content on a media server and establishes a connection to a playback-capable device (renderer). By default, a DMC establishes a connection between a media server and media renderer and controls content playback-related operations.

DMS (Digital Media Server = Network Server)
Actually stores the media content to be shared. When connected to a network, the DMS transmits/distributes the media content for other devices to stream or download.

DMR (Digital Media Renderer = Network Player)
Connects to a media server via media controller for content playback. 

AK Jr vs. AK70 vs. AK300


  • Astell&Kern Support

    Scott: The B&W P9 are easy to drive. You should not need a headphone amp to drive them.

  • Scott

    Is the dac in this good enough to drive my b&w p9’s? Or do i need a seperate amp (chord mojo for e.g) to drive them? Thank You

  • Astell&Kern Support

    Rony: The AK70 is not discontinued and is still a current product. We periodically provide firmware updates via Wi-Fi OTA (Over-The-Air).

  • Rony

    Hi. Is the AK70 still available? Does it discontinue ?
    Is ther a software update ? As i want to buy a new device and I’m confused

  • Astell&Kern Support

    Kurt: If the problem is occurring only in specific .ape or .wav files, it may be the files themselves that is causing the playback issue. Please also make sure that the AK70 is updated to the latest firmware.

    Florian: Our partnership with Qobuz has ended. Plans for Qobuz support in the future is TBD at this time.

    George: What is the file format type of the music you downloaded from the Deezer service? Is the file being copied properly to the micro SD card? For file upload to the AK70’s internal storage, the MTP program refers to the Android File Transfer application for Mac. Download it at Please contact us at our email line for further support.

    JOhn: Please connect your AK70 to a Wi-Fi network to update the firmware. We do not provide the update file on our website.

    Paul Reed: Thank you very much for your kind words! If you could share your experience on our website and social media pages, it would be most appreciated!

    Brent: The listing of music tracks when looking from the Album view will always list the tracks according to their track number. Under the Folder view, the music listing will always be in alphabetical order.

    robert: You can access the structure of how you have your music files organized from the Folder view of the AK70.

    Rony: If you are referring to Apple’s AAC format (which is normally a .m4a file), then yes, it does support it. Please note that the following AAC containers: .m4b, .m4p, .m4r, and .m4v are not supported. The Shure SE846 looks like it will support any product with a 3.5mm audio output mini jack, which includes the AK70.

  • Rony

    Regarding the AK70 device :
    Can I copy my Apple’s iTunes music (Format ACC) to the AK70 ? (With an iMac)
    Is the AK70 compatible with Shure’s SE846 Earphones ?
    Thank you

  • robert

    Question: If I only listen to classical music, in which I have saved each of my albums to a separate file named by composer and composition, will I be able to access individual tracks in each album/file directly with the software provided with the AK70??

  • Brent

    Iv’e had my AK70 for a couple of weeks now and I’m having trouble with track orders on my device. When I look at my albums under the ‘Artists’ tab on the home screen then select an album all the songs are jumbled and out of order. Also, the albums themselves aren’t listed in any alphanumeric order. When I look at my albums by selecting ‘Albums’ from the home screen they are all in the correct order along with the tracks. Any idea why they would be messed up under one tab and all correct under the other one? I really prefer browsing by artist

  • Paul Reed

    I purchased the AK70 and AK Michelle iems and have to say they are both wonderful. Being in the UK they seem to be a bit of a rarity but I’m proud to be one of the happy few!

  • JOhn

    Could anyone help. My AK70 has firmware version 1.1 and only Groove+
    I’d really like to use Tidal but I’m not being prompted for a firmware update and can’t find the software on the AK website
    And help or suggestion much appreciated

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published