Skip Navigation

Astell & Kern Kann

Portable high-resolution audio player (Astro Silver)

11 Reviews | 5 questions - 12 answers

Item # 838KANN

In Stock

 Ships FREE

Add to Cart

Ask an expert

Our VA-based experts can help.




Our take on the Astell & Kern Kann

I spent some time with Astell & Kern's new portable high-res player, the Kann. Its beveled edges felt great in my hand, and the player had a nice heft to it. Most important, though, was the way music sounded through it. On that score, the Kann delivered beautifully — especially with high-resolution tracks.

Astell & Kern Kann

One powerful portable

I spent some time with Astell & Kern's new portable high-res player, the Kann. Its beveled edges felt great in my hand, and the player had a nice heft to it. Most important, though, was the way music sounded through it. On that score, the Kann delivered beautifully — especially with high-resolution tracks.

Exceptional sound quality

The Kann features a high-performance DAC capable of decoding high-res PCM-based files up to 32-bit/384kHz. It'll also play any DSD files you send its way. You can play high-resolution downloads from sites like HDtracks or TIDAL on the Kann without any down conversion. The Kann even helps lossy MP3s sound their best.

Its high signal-to-noise ratio and low distortion let subtle details come through. High-fidelity, low-impedance output gives your headphones more power than most portable music players, for optimal performance. There's even a high-gain switch for use with demanding headphones.

Touchscreen and simple controls

The player's color touchscreen is simple to navigate. It displays artist and title info as well as album artwork. The Kann features a side-mounted analog volume control, allowing fine, nuanced adjustments.

Expandable memory

The Kann has a 64GB internal memory, which you can easily supplement. The player features an SD card slot for cards up to 512GB, plus a microSD card slot for cards up to 256GB. It's possible to hold up to 832GB of music files in your hand.

Product Highlights:

  • digital music player — plays MP3, FLAC, WAV, ALAC, AAC, AIFF, and WMA files
    • native playback for DSD files (up to DSD256, or 11.2MHz)
  • 32-bit/384kHz DAC for bit-perfect playback of high-resolution audio files
  • built-in headphone amp with normal/high-gain switch for driving even the most demanding headphones
  • USB input allows for use as an external digital-to-analog converter (DAC) with a computer
  • 64GB internal flash memory
  • SD card slot for cards up to 512GB
  • microSD card slot for cards up to 256GB
  • 4" color touchscreen
  • analog volume wheel provides fine level adjustments
  • 3.5mm unbalanced headphone/optical output for connection to headphones, receiver/amp, or an external DAC
  • 2.5mm balanced, 4-pole output for connection to compatible headphones
  • Bluetooth® with aptX HD audio coding for high-fidelity streaming to compatible headphones and speakers
  • built-in rechargeable battery provides up to 15 hours of playback
  • high-speed USB interface (cable included) for drag-and-drop file transfer and battery charging
  • USB output
  • extruded aluminum body
  • 2-13/16"W x 4-5/8"H x 1"D
  • weight: 0.61 lbs.
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • Portable digital music player
  • 39" USB-C to USB cable
  • 2 Protective films
  • microSD card slot cover
  • SD card slot cover
  • Quick Start Guide
  • Warranty Card

Astell & Kern Kann Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(11 Reviews)

Amazing sound

Gary from Schenectady, NY on 12/29/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Great sound and more capacity than I will need for a long while. This replaces a Pioneer DAC that died on me. I decided to spend the extra money & get something better. I'm not disappointed. Loading music from a Mac is easy. It truly is drag & drop. Only drawback is the bluetooth cuts out frequently when listening with my earbuds while walking around. I ended up getting a bluetooth transmitter that I hooked this up to. Worked great.

Pros: Sound Capacity Ease of use

Cons: Bluetooth not great

Solid DAC / powerful amp

Jeff from Silver Lake, OH on 12/18/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Deep, rich, full sounding DAC with a powerful amplifier that can drive 300 ohm Sennheisers without difficulty. For me, the Kann replaces a FIIO X7 mark 2, which sounds almost as good but has a slow, buggy Android OS that occasionally crashes. The Kann's OS is sparse, by comparison, offering fewer options, but it is fast and rock solid. I also like the combination of touch screen and physical buttons. The interface is intuitive and easy to use. And the Kann eliminates any need for an additional headphone amplifier. It looks great, sounds great, and feels great in the hand when you are using it.



Astell & Kern Kann

Octavio from Tucson, AZ on 11/13/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

It is true that the player is clunky but it features excellent sound. The battery life is short if you listen at 125 (about 4 hours). I haven't tested listening to it at lower volumes.It charges fast. It takes a while to scan the media and build a database if you have an extensive music library. I wouldn't go back to that other ubiquitous music player. It is well worth it to listen to high res files.



Astell & Kern Kann

Crutchfield customer from Aberdeen, WA on 10/14/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Amazing sound & quality



Great Sound

John from Seattle, WA on 10/2/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Great Sound



Astell & Kern Kann

Guest from Washington, DC on 5/18/2018

I would not recommend buying an AK player. Both SD card slots on mine failed during the warranty period; when I tried to return the player to AK, the company made it difficult-to-impossible. I still do not have a working player or a refund, and they are not responsive. There is no customer service phone number or other contact provided on their company website. For such an expensive item, this is a big risk for a potential purchaser.



Crutchfield response on 5/21/2018 After receiving this customer's feedback, we looked up his order and found that his player is still under warranty. While his order is beyond Crutchfield's 60-day return policy, he can contact Astell & Kern Customer Service at 949-336-4535 for further information about the 1-year warranty on this item.

Astell & Kern Kann

Crutchfield customer from Fayetteville, NC on 2/26/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

It's amazing, the quality of the songs and its functionality are great. The storage allows to have its 90% of my Salsa collection on hand when I travel



Astell & Kern Kann

JORDAN from Long Beach, NY on 2/7/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I think the sound that the Kann produces is superb. When i listen to the Kann with my westone w80 earbuds, which i feel is a great combo sounds incredible. The Kann really drives these phones, much better than my samsung galaxy note 8, its night and day, cant even compare.

Pros: Great sound, clarity, separation and really drives my cans.

Cons: None

Astell & Kern Kann

Larry from Mechanicsville, MD on 12/7/2017

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Purchased this unit because need two major features: Increased memory life because prior player lasted only about 4 hours Needed more memory than avaialable in other comparably priced units: with addition of sandisk 256gb micro SD and 512 GB SD card have plenty for very large CD collection If I have have to downsize KANN would work great with KEF S50 wireless as complete system

Pros: Top memory expansion Great battery life Bluetooth aptx hd

Cons: No additional app except AK Connect

Could be better

Gerald from Boston, MA on 11/14/2017

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Overall, I think the Kann is a great hi-res player.. The sound is one of the best I've heard. I have some gripes.... It's too chunky! Very cumbersome to carry around with you. Another is, I've performed a software update via an alert I received on the Kann. Ever since that, it was tough to upload new music files to the unit. About 90% of the time, my MAC wouldn't acknowledge the Kann. When it would, I would see a dozen error messages asking me to unplug, restart Kann, and reconnect. I would do this multiple times and still wouldn't successfully connect. I went to A&K Support and they weren't that helpful at all. Also, you cannot interchange cards with other Hi-res players. For instance, the Kann won't read the card that was in a Sony player... ETC... Not sure why if the music files are the same. But so be it I guess. For the money this costs, I would think the unit would be better with upgrades and reading additional cards...

Pros: Sound is unbelievable! Love the memory capability.

Cons: Too chunky! Also, handled poorly with software upgrade. Needs to be able to read additional memory cards from other hi-res players.

Great sound !

Big B from Brooklyn on 8/24/2017

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

First I would like to say that Astell & Kern (iriver) is good at what they do. The Kann sound is awesome. The design and control features knocks it down to 4 stars that including the useless instructions you definitely have to learn on the fly. The only real problem I have its doesn't have an open android system like the Onkyo DPX-1 . The Kann limits you to installed subscriptions 2 Chinese which are no good in the U.S. and Tidal . But if you have large music collection this should be a minor thing. Still learning it. I will give another review when I figure out how to fully master it.

Pros: Amazing sound .

Cons: Closed Android system limits the possibilities.


Hands-on research

Product Research


High-Resolution Digital Music Player: Astell & Kern's experience with technology and portable devices makes it possible for the KANN to offer dynamic power and performance. KANN is the complete all-around portable high-resolution digital music player with powerful output and studio quality sound. In addition to a high-resolution digital music player, the Astell & Kern KANN can be used an external USB DAC.

AK4490 Single DAC: The Astell & Kern KANN is equipped with a AK4490 Single DAC (digital-to-analog converter) for 32-bit/382kHz PCM audio playback and native DSD playback up to 11.2mHz.

Femto Clock: The Astell & Kern KANN uses a voltage-controlled crystal oscillator (VCXO) high-precision clock with a reference jitter value of 200 femtoseconds. Femto clocks are typically used in high-end audio components. The clock is measured in femtosecond units (one quadrillionth of a second -- or 1/1000 trillion) which allows the device to create a more accurate frequency value and make fine jitter corrections. Typical clock jitter in the KANN is measured at 30 picoseconds (or 30/1-trillionth).

Built-in Memory + External Storage: The KANN has a built-in 64GB internal flash memory for downloading and storing you digital music files. You can also insert a microSD card (up to 256GB) and full-size SD card (up to 512GB) in the memory card slots on the bottom of the device for additional storage capacity (up to 768GB), for a total maximum storage capacity of 832GB. The memory cards should be formatted in FAT32.

Media File Transfer: You can download digital music files from your Windows PC or Mac computer to the Astell & Kern KANN through its USB-C USB port and the included USB-C to USB cable.

  • Supported Audio Formats: The KANN is capable of download and playback of high resolution digital music files up to 32-bit/382kHz; including FLAC, WAV, ALAC, and AIFF. It also supports playback of DSD music files up to 11.2mHz. In addition, the KANN will support highly compressed music files such as MP3, WMA, AAC, OGG, and APE.
  • Computer Requirements: The KANN is compatible with Windows 7, 8, or 10 (32-bit or 64-bit versions of each). It also support Mac OS X 10.7 and up. Mac users need to download and install the MTP program from the Astell&Kern website.

USB DAC: The USB DAC functionality allows the KANN to be recognized as a sound card on a computer. The KANN's micro-B USB port is connected to a free USB port on your Windows PC or Mac computer (cable not included); the music from your computer is then played through the KANN's earphones port for an enhanced listening experience. This USB DAC connection bypasses the inferior soundcard of your computer or laptop and uses the KANN as the USB DAC for better sound quality. It supports playback of PCM (8-384kHz; 8/16/24/32-bit) and DSD (2.8/5.6/11.2MHz) high resolution music files, providing much richer sound through superior ambience and resolution way beyond the limits of the embedded soundcard of your computer.

  • Computer Requirements: Compatible with Windows PC and Mac computer
    • Windows PC: XP (32/64-bit), 7 (32/64-bit), 8 (32/64-bit), and 10 (32/64-bit)
    • Mac OS: OS X 10.7 (Lion) or later
  • Supported Music Files:
    • PCM: sampling rate of 8-384kHz; bit depth of 8, 16, 24, or 32-bit
    • DSD: sampling rate of 2.8, 5.6, 11.2MHz; bit depth of 1-bit
Notes: When using the KANN as a USB DAC, its PEQ settings are not applied.

Balanced & Unbalanced Output: The Astell & Kern KANN is outfitted with a 2.5mm balanced headphone output (L+/L-/R+/R-) and a 3.5mm unbalanced headphone output (L+/R+/GND) for connection with a variety of headphones.

  • 2.5mm Balanced Jack: The KANN features a 2.5-mm/4-pole balanced output for connection with compatible balanced earphones & headphones. This type of connection requires that you connect your compatible headphones to both the unbalanced port (ground) and balanced audio port (L/R) of the KANN. Unlike the unbalanced type, the balanced output type is capable of removing noise (common mode noise) that can occur in "signal + inverting amplifier signal" and has the strength of increasing output due to its double transmitting signals.
  • 3.5mm Unbalanced Jack: The KANN also features a 3.5-mm/3-pole unbalanced output that offers compatibility with a variety of HiFi earphones and headphones. The 3.5mm headphone jack doubles as an mini optical digital output with a fixed volume level.

Built-In WiFi: The KANN features built-in 2.4GHz WiFi (802.11 b/g/n) which allows you to connect to your home's WiFi network wirelessly with support for AK Connect & DLNA.

  • AK Connect: The KANN comes equipped with the AK Connect feature that can be connected with network-ready Astell & Kern devices and speakers (sold separately).  It will wirelessly output its sound through Astell & Kern speakers (sold separately).
  • DLNA Compliant: 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 on your Apple iOS 7.1+ or Android OS 3.0 device. The KANN can access and play back music files stored on a computer on the same wireless network.
Note: Firmware/software updates are done over the KANN's WiFi network connection.

Bluetooth Transmitter: The KANN has built-in Bluetooth 4.0 for connecting a Bluetooth speaker, headphone, or receiver so you can listen to your digital music files wirelessly. In addition to support for the standard Bluetooth SBC codec, the KANN offers support for aptX allowing CD quality (16-bit/44.1kHz) wireless audio playback for Bluetooth speakers, headphones, and receivers that also support aptX.

Note: DSD playback is not available via Bluetooth, and performance may be limited for high-res playback; 48 kHz or lower resolution is recommended). Car audio Bluetooth connections are not supported.

USB Audio Out: The KANN can be connected to the USB audio input of an AV receiver or integrated amplifier using an OTG cable (sold separately). The KANN can output PCM music files to your receiver or amp. It can also transfer DSD in native through DoP, or convert DSD into PCM for output to amplifiers that do not support DoP.

User Interface: The Astell & Kern KANN features a high-quality user interface to make it easy to find and select your music files, change the volume, and adjust the sound:

  • 4" LCD Touchscreen: The full-color 4" LCD touchscreen has a resolution of 480 x 800 pixels. The screen displays the title and artist of the currently playing song, along with elapsed and remaining time, with the album art in the background. You can make adjustments to the EQ, set the repeat and random modes, and add the song to a playlist, all using the touchscreen interface. 
  • Rotary Wheel: The KANN has a side-mounted rotary wheel for volume control.
  • Hardware Control Buttons: There are five physical buttons on the player (four on the front-panel and one on the top). The top-panel button is for power. The four front-panel buttons include Home/Menu, Play/Pause, Skip Forward, and Skip Backward.

20-band Parametric EQ: The KANN features a parametric EQ and an audio DSP to allow you to make detailed adjustments in the original sound to suit your tastes. The DSP takes the existing 10-band graphic equalizer found in the KANN with ±0.5dB adjustments and upgrades it to a 20-band EQ with ±0.1dB adjustments, plus variable gain and Q values. You can set the EQ curve by simply "drawing" the curve on the touchscreen. The EQ frequency bands include: 30Hz, 45Hz, 60Hz, 90Hz, 120Hz, 180Hz, 250Hz, 380Hz, 500Hz, 750Hz, 1kHz, 1.5kHz, 2kHz, 3kHz, 4kHz, 6kHz, 8kHz, 12kHz, 14kHz, and 18kHz. You can adjust the gain from -5dB to +5dB in 0.1dB increments, and the Q from 0.1 to 4.0dB in 0.1dB increments. If you choose not to activate the Parametric EQ, you can use the Pro EQ presets recommended by professionals.

Gapless Playback: Gapless Playback allows you to play the next song without any interruptions or silence. Gapless playback is only supported between two audio files with identical bit rates, sample rates, and channels.

Power Requirements: The KANN is equipped with a rechargeable Lithium-Polymer battery (6200mAh/3.7V). The battery charges via USB in about 8 hours using a USB port on your computer or about 4 hours using a USB/AC power adapter (sold separately). A 39" USB-C to USB cable is included to connect the player to your charging device. A fully charged battery can provide up to approximately 15 hours of continuous playback time.

Note: The maximum 15-hour continuous play is based on 16-bit/44 kHz, FLAC file format, screen off, 50% of volume, and Normal playback.

Extruded Aluminum Construction: The design of the KANN stands apart from Astell&Kern's other product lines. During assembly, the parts are slid into the aluminum extruded body, and the unique, no-joint design delivers a durable yet sleek appearance. A protective film is included to protect the LCD touchscreen.

Optional CD Ripper (Sold Separately): The KANN can be expanded to a variety of devices through the Micro-B USB and balanced audio out ports located at the bottom of the player. It can be connected to Astell & Kern's CD-RIPPER to conveniently rip audio CD (all devices sold separately).

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Q & A

Customer Q&A

Crutchfield asked  
Why did you buy this?

To hear hi res files and to replace my ipod touch which does not support hi res files [ Octavio  Oct 28, 2018 ]
one of two choices. trying the lower priced item first before moving to higher priced item. Heard good reviews about AK. [ Ian  Jul 18, 2018 ]
sound quality [ David  Jun 20, 2017 ]
Reviews seem very positive with regards to this device. [ Colin  Jun 09, 2017 ]
Astell & Kern have always been rock solid devices. Their amps in their DAPS have way more power than in the Pioneer DAP I currently own. Like the blue color instead of boring black. I have 500gb of music so the fact that the KANN can handle 768gb is fantastic. Also thank you Crutchfield Rewards saved an additional $130. [ Keith  Aug 01, 2018 ]
The various reviews I read, and the 60 day return policy. [ A  Jun 01, 2018 ]
reviews [ ROBERT  Feb 13, 2018 ]
Hi-fidelity player with built-in amplifier. From all the research I did, this is clearly the best device on the market. [ DONALD  Oct 25, 2017 ]

5 questions already asked

I have the Kann Eos Blue, but I believe if we turn out the lights it is identical to the Astro Silver. I just plugged the necessary cables into my older Onkyo TX-8511 stereo receiver and connected the Kann. I had to plug the cable into the Kann headphone jack. From that point on the Kann volume control worked, as did the volume control on the tuner. [ A  Aug 21, 2018 ]
If you use the 3.5 mm the volume should still work. If you use the unbalanced output volume remains constant and the Kann volume control is disabled. [ Brian  Aug 21, 2018 ]
No. The stereo will not be able to communicate with the player's OS to access the stored content. Even if it could, the stock stereo is not likely to support the higher resolution music files (up to 32-bit/384kHz) you would hopefully have stored on the player's memory. If your stereo offers an auxiliary audio input, you can use the player's 3.5mm audio output for connection and playback through the stereo; you'll just have to control and display the content on the player. This will allow you to utilize the player's much higher quality digital to analog conversion as well. For additional assistance and personalized recommendations, feel free to contact us directly by phone or through our online chat service: [ Ryan  Jan 26, 2018 ]  Staff
You can use it without blue tooth. You can connect it by the 3.5 mm output or the 2.5 unbalanced output . I use either of these in my vehicle when using my Kann.This allows me to keep my Bluetooth free for my phone. [ Brian  Nov 11, 2017 ]
Yes, you just need a male-to-male headphone connection that you'll plug into your music system's Aux port. [ DONALD  Nov 11, 2017 ]
Yes. I run the 2 volt unbalanced into the aux in on my car. [ W  Nov 11, 2017 ]
The KANN has a one year warranty in the U.S. I had one question regarding my product (on connecting to a streaming service) that was answered by customer support quickly via e-mail. I don't know whether you can buy an extended warranty. Mine has been trouble free and I am happy with the purchase -- I have downloaded hundreds of CDs onto the device (you'll need an SD card to expand memory) and the sound quality is astonishing. If you have an Apple computer, you'll need to install the Android file transfer program to do that (and of course you'll also have to buy an AK CD ripper). I stream from a high def source as well (Tidal) and that too provides amazing sound. Get a good pair of headphones to really enjoy the experience. [ William  Jan 22, 2019 ]
It does have a manufacturer's warranty.I believe it is one year and there is no extended warranty that I know of. Support takes a while to answer their emails and when they do you don't always get the appropriate answer. Like I said in a previous post. The only thing the Kann does is play music and it does that very well. The OS is quite limited in what it can do. For example, you can't import playlists from other applications. You have to create them in the system which is very inconvenient and time-consuming. This is especially so for mutiple-disc albums. Also, the battery life is much shorter than the one claimed by the manufacturer especially when listening at or about a 100. That being said, I only listen to it for a half an hour at time. The housing can get quite hot when listening to the player for extended periods. I hope this helps. [ Octavio  Jan 22, 2019 ]
I have not had a problem with the unit I purchased I believe Khan has a year manufacturer's warranty back by Crutchfield. I have not seen any indication that they do not honor their warranty were any one saying they had any problems returning. I can tell you Crutchfield supports their products I have had others that I bought too many of or we're not correct and they return them with no issues I don't know if you can buy an extended warranty policy. In terms of the unit Khan it is exceptional. A very expensive unit and worth every penny as long as you load the right music 24-bit or more and have a system to play that on that supports 24 and you are absolutely love it guarantee I couldn't rate it high enough [ JAMES  Jan 22, 2019 ]
My best answer to this would be to call austral kern. There number is on there web site. I spoke to a rep named Andrew who was extra extremely generous with his time. Probably spoke with him every Monday for 4 to 5 weeks to determine which product to buy (kann) and why and to get it set up. We did talk about warrentees and service by to be honest I can't rememember. I did purchase the extra warrentee through Crutchfield. I have talk with Andrew a couple of other times because I purchase a unit not kann for my wife. Through Crutchfield as well. Best to here it from Australia kern directly. Andrew is/was in Southern California Hope that helps [ Ian  Jan 22, 2019 ]
Yes you can, although not quite as slickly as an Ipod. you will need to download the Android file transfer app, which you can find in the online manual for the Kann. The only way it seems to sort is by album or song name, so it will not transfer a "playlist" as you may have it in your Itunes. Hope that helps. All in all I relly like the Kann, the sound quality blows away an Ipod. [ Gordon Scott  Apr 20, 2018 ]
I'm very happy with the Kann, but I use it exclusively to play DSD files in my car. I have my dsd files on a separate hard drive that is connected to my music server at home, so I simply copy the albums/tracks that I want over to the Kann or to the micro memory card. I have not tried to copy anything from iTunes. In my experience getting anything out of Itunes is cumpbersome, but there are probably workarounds that can be found with a google search [ Roar  Apr 19, 2018 ]