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Astell & Kern AK500N - MQS Network Audio Player

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The 500N gives you the freedom to select the sound.

The AK500N is the first desktop network audio product from Astell&Kern that truly combines advanced digital technology with analog sound. 
The AK500N is the culmination of the experience and know-how accumulated from work on the AK series including the AK240.

One-click CD-ripping and perfect noise isolation through battery-only operation. PCM to DSD conversion faithful to the original sound and excellent compatibility with a wide range of devices. Easy DLNA-based networking and high-reliability SSD.

For the AK500N, no detail was overlooked from planning to development to delivery of sound that is true to the original source.

AK500N Icons

Perfect Extractor

How are you enjoying your precious CD collection?
Are you still listening to your music one CD at a time?

Import your CD collection into the AK500N with the one click.

By taking highly-optimized ripping engine, the AK500N provides users with flawless CD rips through enhanced jitter and error correction support. The highest sound quality is captured with enhanced jitter correction and excellent CD track error detection and correction.

Two speeds (Normal / Fast) are available for CD-ripping, and the tracks can be saved in either WAV or FLAC.

In addition, Album art and music data are automatically imported from Gracenote’s latest music DB, and is the most recognized and accurate source of music DB in the world. In addition the touch keypad allows the user to enter the CD title, artist, genre, year of release information

Pure Sound

A common factor in devices operating in AC power is that the AC power supply is a point of entry for unwanted external noise and exit for device noise. These are the main causes of sound quality degradation.

The AK500N does not allow even 1% of external noise.

Although the AK500N is desktop audio device, it was designed to use a built-in battery for noise isolation. The AK500N physically blocks noise generated in the AC power supply to prevent sound degradation at all levels. Music playback on the AK500N is achieved with battery-only operation, creating a truly Pure Sound.

The SMPS (Switched Mode Power Supply) employed in the AK500N is an outstanding device with a Level 5 efficiency rating. The noise-sensitive power ripple noise* is below 50mVp-p at full load (5A).

The AK500N delivers sound quality closest to the original recording through perfect noise isolation and battery-only operation.
* Ripple Noise : Unwanted "ripples" of direct current (DC) voltage in the alternating current (AC) peaks resulting from the incomplete conversion of AC to DC.

PCM to DSD

The AK500N features a dedicated DSD chipset for DSD playback and converts PCM file to DSD64 data through audio engine of Astell&Kern.
The AK500N converts high-resolution 32 bit/384 kHz WAV PCM and 24 bit/352 kHz FLAC PCM file to DSD64 data without any down-sampling.
In Addition, real time PCM file to DSD64 data playback available.

Go one step further to original sound with this feature by converting, without any distortion, the unique audio information contained within the sound source.
Comparison of noise level PCM and DSD
Unlike PCM, the noise curve changes gradually without abrupt spikes in noise levels toward higher frequencies with DSD. This means that DSD is less vulnerable to noise intrusion in the higher frequencies compared to PCM.

Comparison of sample rate PCM and DSD

PCM (Pulse-Code Modulation), the common digital recording method for analog signals, divides the y-axis of a sine wave into 65,000 (16-bit) to 16.7 million (24-bit) units of resolution and the x-axis into 44,000 (44.1 kHz) to 384,000 (384 kHz) units for the sample rate before converting into a digital signal. Instead, DSD (Direct-Stream Digital) only divides the y-axis of a sine wave into a single-bit (0 and 1) resolution while dividing the x-axis into 2.8 million (2.8 MHz) to 5.6 million (5.6 MHz) units. DSD's oversampled signal reduces noise and distortion into mere single bits of data for audio reproduction that’s closest to the original sound.

AK500N 02

AK500N 03

4 BAY SSD

The AK500N features multi-level cell (MLC) SSD rather than a triple-level cell (TLC) SSD for increased durability and reliability. The vibration noise generated by conventional HDDs has been eliminated completely. Save and load large amounts of data even faster than traditional HDDs through the superior speed and stability of SSDs.

1TB/2TB/4TB SSD options are offered to satisfy each user’s needs.

Powerful Connections

The AK500N supports a wide range of inputs and outputs.
Connect various high-end products through the AK500N's digital inputs and outputs (AES/EBU, Coaxial, Optical, BNC).

In addition, the analog output supports both Fixed and Variable signals for a direct connection to a powered amplifier. A simple but high-level premium system configuration is possible through the AK500N's flexible digital and analog connections. For user convenience, the inputs and outputs are expressed in easy-to-read graphics on the touch-screen menu.

Advanced Network

The network capability of the AK500N is another attractive feature that cannot be overlooked.

The AK500N connects to PCs as well as NAS servers through its DLNA implementation using LAN, Wi-Fi and is easily controlled with an app on smartphones and tablets. Music on your PC or NAS can be freely streamed and played back without the hassle of having to turn on your PC and connecting a cable and it can output the sound in conjunction with the network speaker. The AK500N can be easily kept up-to-date with OTA (Over-the-Air) firmware updates.

Design Concept

The wondrous power and imagery found in nature influences many areas of design.
Accordingly, the AK500N's design motif was inspired by images in nature.

The core design of the AK500N features multiple facets coming together in a single point, symbolizing the greatness of Switzerland's Matterhorn, ever-changing with time and the amount of light. We focused on capturing the imagery of its rock surfaces.

The AK500N exemplifies the process of rocks forming together from tiny grains of earth and stone. The final design was shaped by cutting angled surfaces into a large shape that had formed through the accumulation of smaller segments.

A close look at the AK500N reveals the intricacies of pitch through the acute angles found on its surface. The changes in the surfaces expressed in the AK500N represent the highs, mids, and lows in sound.

The purpose of the AK500N is not to change the sound but deliver the original sound as it was meant to be heard.

AK500N Manufacturing Process

A large block of aluminum undergoes a variety of manufacturing steps.

A 5-axis machining process is used to create the unique front fascia of the AK500N. The AK500N's fascia simply cannot be created with an ordinary machining process. The aluminum block is rotated at different angles and carefully milled to create a complex design in a truly unique process.

The top, sides, and other parts of the AK500N are milled. A wide array of tools are used in a time-consuming process to create the AK500N's unique shape.

The milled parts are treated in a sandblasting process. Parts are blasted with sand under high pressure to create a soft and luxurious shine. The AK500N is sizable compared to other products, and thus, it requires the use of precision instruments to achieve its finish - a process that is too taxing for a human hand.

After the sanding process, the parts are washed to remove any debris or contaminants in preparation for the anodizing process for a smooth, colored finish. Each part is treated multiple times in various solutions.

Once the anodizing process is completed, the aluminum is engraved with a laser. Each aluminum body is precisely engraved with a serial number and the Astell&Kern brand.


AK500N 04

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Our aim is to dispatch goods within 2 working days of an order being placed. Please allow 5 working days from the time of your order to receipt of item. If an order is expected to take longer than this our order fulfillment department will contact you to inform you of this.

Where multiple items are ordered, we will dispatch them all in one package. If you have ordered any special or customized items, or items otherwise not immediately available, we will dispatch the order when all items are available. If you have any concerns regarding this, please contact us and we will do are very best to help you.

Astell & Kern AK500N - MQS Network Audio Player




Nintronics offers generous trade in prices to help make your next upgrade as seamless as possible, while greatly reducing the overall price of your purchase. Depending upon the items involved, Nintronics will be happy to send out one of our nationwide installation engineers to collect your traded in items and unbox, setup and calibrate your new equipment.

Astell & Kern AK500N - MQS Network Audio Player

"Please include age, condition, make, model and serial numbers of the units you wish to trade in. Please note if you have the original accessories, boxes, invoice etc... This will help with increasing your trade in value."




Nintronics Ltd, Unit 7, Martinfield Business Centre, Welwyn Garden City, AL7 1HG
Tel: 01707 320788 Email: sales@nintronics.co.uk

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