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Astell&Kern AK HB1 portable Bluetooth DAC/AMP

    Description

    Experience the Freedom of Music, AK HB1 

    AK HB1 is a portable Bluetooth DAC/AMP that lets you effortlessly experience high-quality audio and Hi-Fi streaming services with the best performance, all without the hassle of cables. 

    Pair your mobile device to AK HB1 through Bluetooth and experience seamless, wireless Hi-Fi sound across various IEMs and headphones, all facilitated by its compact, lightweight design and powerful built-in amplifier.

    In addition to this, AK HB1 also delivers Astell&Kern's pristine sound quality via USB DAC functionality, and offers a seamless connection to gaming devices and immersive entertainment using microphones, transforming your mobile device into a hub of endless multimedia possibilities.

    Features

    • 3.5-mm and 4.4-mm Dual Output
    • Supports LDAC and aptX™HD for High-quality Bluetooth Sound
    • Features ESS ES9281AC PRO DAC
    • Separate DAC and AMP for Premium Hi-Fi Experience
    • Plug & Play USB DAC Function
    • Interchangeable Cable (Type-C and Lightning Cable Included)
    • Supports UAC 1.0 (Gaming System)
    • Clear and Vivid Voice in Calls
    • Car Mode Supported
    • Multi-point Connection (Up To Two Devices)
    • MQA Renderer

    Premium Bluetooth for Hi-Fi Sound

    AK HB1 is equipped with Qualcomm's CSR8675 Bluetooth chipset, which supports the transmission of high-resolution audio sources, ensuring a stable connection.

    From LDAC, supporting 24 bit/96 kHz, to the aptX™ HD codec offering stable 24-bit/48kHz support, AK HB1 accommodates an extensive selection of codecs, including the most commonly used AAC and SBC. This comprehensive codec support guarantees smooth wireless playback of high-resolution streaming audio from both smartphones and PCs.

    Furthermore, AK HB1 features Bluetooth multi-point capability, allowing connection with up to two devices simultaneously. This feature allows you to effortlessly switch connections between various mobile devices, enabling scenarios like enjoying music from a tablet PC while concurrently receiving notifications and calls on your smartphone.

    High-Resolution Sound Unleashed by USB DAC

    AK HB1 goes beyond simple Bluetooth playback, delivering outstanding, full high-resolution sound via USB DAC connection to PCs, smartphones, tablets, and more.

    Supporting Native DSD256 and 32-bit/384kHz playback, AK HB1 ensures compatibility with a diverse range of high-quality audio sources, providing Astell&Kern's signature premium sound quality.

    Additionally, equipped with a renderer function that supports MQA 8X, AK HB1 enables MQA playback without the need for external DACs or playback devices. By simply connecting AK HB1 via cable to compatible devices, which support MQA unfolding, you can enjoy MQA audio playback through network-enabled apps and streaming services from anywhere.

    *To use AK HB1 as a H/W MQA renderer, a compatible S/W core decoder capable of unfolding MQA is required.

    Precision DAC and AMP Design for Hi-Fi Sound

    AK HB1 incorporates ESS’s ES9281AC PRO DAC for exceptional noise control and unparalleled ultra-high-quality Hi-Fi sound performance.

    Adding to this, AK HB1 introduces an exclusive AMP circuitry that supersedes the standard built-in DAC AMP.

    Its AMP enables a commanding 4Vrms output (in Balanced connection) and dual connectivity options — 3.5mm unbalanced and 4.4mm balanced, catering to a wide range of IEMs and headphones.

    While maintaining a compact form factor of 33 x 68.4 x 16.5 mm, we used micro resistors and capacitor parts to achieve a small footprint without compromising performance. Carefully selected ultra-small tantalum capacitors, which are used in AK player products to create a stable system and audio performance by controlling the power fluctuations, are also included to create an optimal audio circuit design. In addition, the output and audio performance are enhanced with Astell&Kern's unique power management technology to minimize current consumption in respect of the connected device.

     

    Dual Noise Shielded Cable

    To ensure optimal usability across both Android and iOS devices without the need for additional adapters, AK HB1 features an interchangeable cable that readily supports Type-C and Lightning connections.

    The AK HB1 features a dual shielded cable to minimize noise and deliver a more vivid, original sound.

    The copper core wire is coated with tin to prevent corrosion and strengthen tensile force for enhanced durability.

    Additionally, the entire cable is wrapped in an aluminum film to block noise with an extra layer of shielding around the power cable to further minimize noise, the biggest issue in audio, then the tin-coated copper wire is woven to minimize noise interference to sound.

    Finished with a fabric jacket on top of the TPE jacket, the cable features enhanced durability and usability with perfect aesthetic appeal.

    Easy and Convenient, USB Plug & Play

    AK HB1 simplifies the transition between Bluetooth and USB cable connections by supporting USB Plug & Play functionality.

    Connect AK HB1 to your PC or smart device using a USB cable to enjoy high-resolution sound while simultaneously controlling various settings and features through the app on your Bluetooth-connected smartphone. With BT Priority Mode enabled, AK HB1 seamlessly switches to Bluetooth mode, whenever a Bluetooth signal is received while using the USB DAC function.

    High Compatibility and Simultaneous Support for UAC 1.0 & 2.0 for Gaming

    While modern smartphones, tablets, and PCs support UAC 2.0 connections, many gaming devices still exclusively support UAC 1.0 connections.

    To cater to both scenarios, AK HB1 ensures compatibility by supporting both UAC 2.0 and UAC 1.0 connections for cross-platform quality sound experiences.

    Connect AK HB1 to your gaming device such as PlayStation and Switch, and enjoy low latency and enhanced sound for an immersive gaming experience.

    Seamless Experience Extended to Cars with Car Mode

    Activate AK HB1's dedicated Car Mode to enjoy high-quality DAC/AMP sound effortlessly while at the wheel. Simply connect AK HB1 to your vehicle's AUX port, and its power automatically turns on/off based on your vehicle's ignition, allowing you to enjoy audio from paired devices.

    Crystal-Clear Voice Calls Thanks to High-Sensitivity MEMS MIC

    AK HB1 ensures crystal-clear voice quality and stability thanks to Knowles's high-quality MEMS microphone technology and Qualcomm's cVc Generation 8.0 call solution with Clear Voice Capture technology, which suppresses ambient noise while delivering clear vocals to the recipient.

    Furthermore, AK HB1 incorporates a 4-pole in-line MIC, enabling voice calls via wired earphones.

    Experience enhanced call quality alongside AK HB1's exceptional Hi-Fi sound.

    *The in-line MIC functionality is only available while USB DAC is enabled. During Bluetooth (BT) connections, the built-in microphone of HB1 handles calls.

    *For 4-pole earphones, AK HB1 supports only CTIA-compliant earphones (OMTP-compliant products are not supported).

    Smart Charging System

    AK HB1 automatically recognizes devices when they are connected via a USB cable, whether playback or charging devices, streamlining the charging process without requiring additional setting adjustments.

    Also, the charging mode can be turned on/off to allow simultaneous playback and device charging, preventing battery depletion during playback.

    *Charging notes:
    1. When connected to a charger via USB, it charges at normal speed (1 hour and 30 minutes to full charge).
    2. When connected to a playback device via USB, the charging speed is adjusted, and the charging mode can be turned on/off.
    Charging Mode On: Charges HB1's battery using the playback device's battery power.
    Charging Mode Off: Operates only by AK HB1's battery without charging from external devices.

     

    LED Indicators for Real-Time Status

    Two LED lights positioned on the side of the AK HB1 give you an overview of the current device status such as the file type being played and battery information.

    Easy Configuration With Out Proprietary App

    Install the exclusive app to use various functions and enjoy easy setup.

    The AK Control app is equipped with various newly developed user functions for the AK HB1. Users can now conveniently control Device Priority, Volume Level, User EQ setup, Car Mode and DAC Filter setting, etc.

    MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) is an award-winning British technology that delivers the sound of the original master recording. The master MQA file is fully authenticated and is small enough to stream or download. Visit mqa.co.uk for more information. Astell&Kern AK HB1 includes MQA technology, which enables you to play back MQA audio files and streams, delivering the sound of the original master recording. 

    The MQA logo is a trademark of MQA Limited. © MQA Limited 2018 

    Qualcomm aptX is a product of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries. Qualcomm is a trademark of Qualcomm Incorporated, registered in the United States and other countries. aptX is a trademark of Qualcomm Technologies International, Ltd., registered in the United States and other countries. 

    LDAC and LDAC logo are trademarks of Sony Corporation.

    Specifications

    General Specifications

    Model

    AK HB1

    Body Color

    Shadow Black

    Body Material

    Polycarbonate (Body) / Aluminum (Volume Wheel)

    Bluetooth Chipset Qualcomm CSR8675
    Bluetooth Version 5.0
    Bluetooth Codec LDAC, aptX™ HD, aptX™, AAC, SBC
    Bluetooth Profile A2DP, AVRCP, HFP

    DAC

    ESS ES9281AC PRO

    Sample Rate

    PCM: 8kHz ~ 384kHz (8/16/24/32 bits per Sample)
    DSD Native: DSD64 (1-bit, 2.8MHz), Stereo / DSD128 (1-bit, 5.6MHz), Stereo / DSD256 (1-bit, 11.2MHz), Stereo
    Output Level Unbalanced 2Vrms Balanced 4Vrms (Condition No Load)

    Input

    USB Type-C (Supports UAC 1.0 and UAC 2.0)

    Output

    3.5mm (Supports CTIA standard 4-pole earphones/headphones), 4.4mm (Only 5-pole supported)

    Dimensions

    33mm [W] x 68.4mm [H] x 16.5mm [D] (Excluding volume wheel)
    39.8mm [W] x 68.4mm [H] 16.5mm [D] (Including volume wheel)

    Weight

    About 1.41oz (40g)

    Feature Enhancements Firmware upgrade supported (OTA with APP)

     

    Audio Specifications

    Frequency Response

    ±0.135dB (Condition: 20Hz~20kHz) Unbalanced
    ±0.136dB (Condition: 20Hz~20kHz) Balanced

    S/N

    117dB @ 1kHz, Unbalanced
    118dB @ 1kHz, Balanced

    Crosstalk

    -112dB @ 1kHz, Unbalanced
    -112dB @ 1kHz, Balanced

    THD+N 0.0005% @ 1kHz, Unbalanced
    0.0005% @ 1kHz, Balanced

    IMD SMPTE

    0.0003% 800Hz 10kHz (4:1) Unbalanced
    0.0003% 800Hz 10kHz (4:1) Balanced

    Output Impedance

    Unbalanced Out 3.5mm (0.8ohm)
    Balanced Out 4.4mm (1.8ohm)

     

    Battery

    Capacity

    600mAh 3.8V Li-Polymer

    Charge Time

    About 1.5 hours

    Playback Time

    About 6 hours (Standard: AAC)

    Astell&Kern AK HB1 portable Bluetooth DAC/AMP

      Product form

      £259.00 Incl. VAT

          Description

          Experience the Freedom of Music, AK HB1 

          AK HB1 is a portable Bluetooth DAC/AMP that lets you effortlessly experience high-quality audio and Hi-Fi streaming services with the best performance, all without the hassle of cables. 

          Pair your mobile device to AK HB1 through Bluetooth and experience seamless, wireless Hi-Fi sound across various IEMs and headphones, all facilitated by its compact, lightweight design and powerful built-in amplifier.

          In addition to this, AK HB1 also delivers Astell&Kern's pristine sound quality via USB DAC functionality, and offers a seamless connection to gaming devices and immersive entertainment using microphones, transforming your mobile device into a hub of endless multimedia possibilities.

          Features

          • 3.5-mm and 4.4-mm Dual Output
          • Supports LDAC and aptX™HD for High-quality Bluetooth Sound
          • Features ESS ES9281AC PRO DAC
          • Separate DAC and AMP for Premium Hi-Fi Experience
          • Plug & Play USB DAC Function
          • Interchangeable Cable (Type-C and Lightning Cable Included)
          • Supports UAC 1.0 (Gaming System)
          • Clear and Vivid Voice in Calls
          • Car Mode Supported
          • Multi-point Connection (Up To Two Devices)
          • MQA Renderer

          Premium Bluetooth for Hi-Fi Sound

          AK HB1 is equipped with Qualcomm's CSR8675 Bluetooth chipset, which supports the transmission of high-resolution audio sources, ensuring a stable connection.

          From LDAC, supporting 24 bit/96 kHz, to the aptX™ HD codec offering stable 24-bit/48kHz support, AK HB1 accommodates an extensive selection of codecs, including the most commonly used AAC and SBC. This comprehensive codec support guarantees smooth wireless playback of high-resolution streaming audio from both smartphones and PCs.

          Furthermore, AK HB1 features Bluetooth multi-point capability, allowing connection with up to two devices simultaneously. This feature allows you to effortlessly switch connections between various mobile devices, enabling scenarios like enjoying music from a tablet PC while concurrently receiving notifications and calls on your smartphone.

          High-Resolution Sound Unleashed by USB DAC

          AK HB1 goes beyond simple Bluetooth playback, delivering outstanding, full high-resolution sound via USB DAC connection to PCs, smartphones, tablets, and more.

          Supporting Native DSD256 and 32-bit/384kHz playback, AK HB1 ensures compatibility with a diverse range of high-quality audio sources, providing Astell&Kern's signature premium sound quality.

          Additionally, equipped with a renderer function that supports MQA 8X, AK HB1 enables MQA playback without the need for external DACs or playback devices. By simply connecting AK HB1 via cable to compatible devices, which support MQA unfolding, you can enjoy MQA audio playback through network-enabled apps and streaming services from anywhere.

          *To use AK HB1 as a H/W MQA renderer, a compatible S/W core decoder capable of unfolding MQA is required.

          Precision DAC and AMP Design for Hi-Fi Sound

          AK HB1 incorporates ESS’s ES9281AC PRO DAC for exceptional noise control and unparalleled ultra-high-quality Hi-Fi sound performance.

          Adding to this, AK HB1 introduces an exclusive AMP circuitry that supersedes the standard built-in DAC AMP.

          Its AMP enables a commanding 4Vrms output (in Balanced connection) and dual connectivity options — 3.5mm unbalanced and 4.4mm balanced, catering to a wide range of IEMs and headphones.

          While maintaining a compact form factor of 33 x 68.4 x 16.5 mm, we used micro resistors and capacitor parts to achieve a small footprint without compromising performance. Carefully selected ultra-small tantalum capacitors, which are used in AK player products to create a stable system and audio performance by controlling the power fluctuations, are also included to create an optimal audio circuit design. In addition, the output and audio performance are enhanced with Astell&Kern's unique power management technology to minimize current consumption in respect of the connected device.

           

          Dual Noise Shielded Cable

          To ensure optimal usability across both Android and iOS devices without the need for additional adapters, AK HB1 features an interchangeable cable that readily supports Type-C and Lightning connections.

          The AK HB1 features a dual shielded cable to minimize noise and deliver a more vivid, original sound.

          The copper core wire is coated with tin to prevent corrosion and strengthen tensile force for enhanced durability.

          Additionally, the entire cable is wrapped in an aluminum film to block noise with an extra layer of shielding around the power cable to further minimize noise, the biggest issue in audio, then the tin-coated copper wire is woven to minimize noise interference to sound.

          Finished with a fabric jacket on top of the TPE jacket, the cable features enhanced durability and usability with perfect aesthetic appeal.

          Easy and Convenient, USB Plug & Play

          AK HB1 simplifies the transition between Bluetooth and USB cable connections by supporting USB Plug & Play functionality.

          Connect AK HB1 to your PC or smart device using a USB cable to enjoy high-resolution sound while simultaneously controlling various settings and features through the app on your Bluetooth-connected smartphone. With BT Priority Mode enabled, AK HB1 seamlessly switches to Bluetooth mode, whenever a Bluetooth signal is received while using the USB DAC function.

          High Compatibility and Simultaneous Support for UAC 1.0 & 2.0 for Gaming

          While modern smartphones, tablets, and PCs support UAC 2.0 connections, many gaming devices still exclusively support UAC 1.0 connections.

          To cater to both scenarios, AK HB1 ensures compatibility by supporting both UAC 2.0 and UAC 1.0 connections for cross-platform quality sound experiences.

          Connect AK HB1 to your gaming device such as PlayStation and Switch, and enjoy low latency and enhanced sound for an immersive gaming experience.

          Seamless Experience Extended to Cars with Car Mode

          Activate AK HB1's dedicated Car Mode to enjoy high-quality DAC/AMP sound effortlessly while at the wheel. Simply connect AK HB1 to your vehicle's AUX port, and its power automatically turns on/off based on your vehicle's ignition, allowing you to enjoy audio from paired devices.

          Crystal-Clear Voice Calls Thanks to High-Sensitivity MEMS MIC

          AK HB1 ensures crystal-clear voice quality and stability thanks to Knowles's high-quality MEMS microphone technology and Qualcomm's cVc Generation 8.0 call solution with Clear Voice Capture technology, which suppresses ambient noise while delivering clear vocals to the recipient.

          Furthermore, AK HB1 incorporates a 4-pole in-line MIC, enabling voice calls via wired earphones.

          Experience enhanced call quality alongside AK HB1's exceptional Hi-Fi sound.

          *The in-line MIC functionality is only available while USB DAC is enabled. During Bluetooth (BT) connections, the built-in microphone of HB1 handles calls.

          *For 4-pole earphones, AK HB1 supports only CTIA-compliant earphones (OMTP-compliant products are not supported).

          Smart Charging System

          AK HB1 automatically recognizes devices when they are connected via a USB cable, whether playback or charging devices, streamlining the charging process without requiring additional setting adjustments.

          Also, the charging mode can be turned on/off to allow simultaneous playback and device charging, preventing battery depletion during playback.

          *Charging notes:
          1. When connected to a charger via USB, it charges at normal speed (1 hour and 30 minutes to full charge).
          2. When connected to a playback device via USB, the charging speed is adjusted, and the charging mode can be turned on/off.
          Charging Mode On: Charges HB1's battery using the playback device's battery power.
          Charging Mode Off: Operates only by AK HB1's battery without charging from external devices.

           

          LED Indicators for Real-Time Status

          Two LED lights positioned on the side of the AK HB1 give you an overview of the current device status such as the file type being played and battery information.

          Easy Configuration With Out Proprietary App

          Install the exclusive app to use various functions and enjoy easy setup.

          The AK Control app is equipped with various newly developed user functions for the AK HB1. Users can now conveniently control Device Priority, Volume Level, User EQ setup, Car Mode and DAC Filter setting, etc.

          MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) is an award-winning British technology that delivers the sound of the original master recording. The master MQA file is fully authenticated and is small enough to stream or download. Visit mqa.co.uk for more information. Astell&Kern AK HB1 includes MQA technology, which enables you to play back MQA audio files and streams, delivering the sound of the original master recording. 

          The MQA logo is a trademark of MQA Limited. © MQA Limited 2018 

          Qualcomm aptX is a product of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries. Qualcomm is a trademark of Qualcomm Incorporated, registered in the United States and other countries. aptX is a trademark of Qualcomm Technologies International, Ltd., registered in the United States and other countries. 

          LDAC and LDAC logo are trademarks of Sony Corporation.

          Specifications

          General Specifications

          Model

          AK HB1

          Body Color

          Shadow Black

          Body Material

          Polycarbonate (Body) / Aluminum (Volume Wheel)

          Bluetooth Chipset Qualcomm CSR8675
          Bluetooth Version 5.0
          Bluetooth Codec LDAC, aptX™ HD, aptX™, AAC, SBC
          Bluetooth Profile A2DP, AVRCP, HFP

          DAC

          ESS ES9281AC PRO

          Sample Rate

          PCM: 8kHz ~ 384kHz (8/16/24/32 bits per Sample)
          DSD Native: DSD64 (1-bit, 2.8MHz), Stereo / DSD128 (1-bit, 5.6MHz), Stereo / DSD256 (1-bit, 11.2MHz), Stereo
          Output Level Unbalanced 2Vrms Balanced 4Vrms (Condition No Load)

          Input

          USB Type-C (Supports UAC 1.0 and UAC 2.0)

          Output

          3.5mm (Supports CTIA standard 4-pole earphones/headphones), 4.4mm (Only 5-pole supported)

          Dimensions

          33mm [W] x 68.4mm [H] x 16.5mm [D] (Excluding volume wheel)
          39.8mm [W] x 68.4mm [H] 16.5mm [D] (Including volume wheel)

          Weight

          About 1.41oz (40g)

          Feature Enhancements Firmware upgrade supported (OTA with APP)

           

          Audio Specifications

          Frequency Response

          ±0.135dB (Condition: 20Hz~20kHz) Unbalanced
          ±0.136dB (Condition: 20Hz~20kHz) Balanced

          S/N

          117dB @ 1kHz, Unbalanced
          118dB @ 1kHz, Balanced

          Crosstalk

          -112dB @ 1kHz, Unbalanced
          -112dB @ 1kHz, Balanced

          THD+N 0.0005% @ 1kHz, Unbalanced
          0.0005% @ 1kHz, Balanced

          IMD SMPTE

          0.0003% 800Hz 10kHz (4:1) Unbalanced
          0.0003% 800Hz 10kHz (4:1) Balanced

          Output Impedance

          Unbalanced Out 3.5mm (0.8ohm)
          Balanced Out 4.4mm (1.8ohm)

           

          Battery

          Capacity

          600mAh 3.8V Li-Polymer

          Charge Time

          About 1.5 hours

          Playback Time

          About 6 hours (Standard: AAC)

          The Joe Audio Promise

          As a specialist supplier of some of the greatest equipment to our customers, we set ourselves high standards that match our amazing products and always strive to offer..

          • The latest and greatest equipment available at all times
          • FREE shipping anywhere within the UK
          • Specialist advice available from our customer service team

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