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Astell and Kern SP2000 Comparison/Impressions

2019-09-24


Alan here today with our impression of the brand new SP2000 in the Copper and Stainless Steel finishes.

I got a listening demo at Astell and Kern in Irvine. Heard the SP2000 in Stainless Steel and Copper along with their Layla Aion and T9iE and brought my Ether 2 and UE18+.

SP2000 Copper vs Stainless Steel
Copper is warmer than the Stainless Steel. Not by very much but I could see anyone being fine with one or the other. My preference would be towards the Copper with the gear I tested. The SS was a little bit more detailed and better clarity compared to the Copper. So I would say the tradeoffs between the two would be warmth vs detail/clarity.

From personal experience, it seems like the Copper is the more popular option when it came to the AK380, SP1000, and SP2000.

On the Layla Aion and T9iE I was on 2.5mm and hovering around 50 volume, UE18+ on 3.5mm around 75 volume, on the Ether 2 with 2.5mm around 100 volume.

Didn't hear any noise floor on any of the IEMs. T9iE was with the AK tuning so the treble was much more relaxed compared to the other Beyer IEMs. Layla Aion I left on the 12 o'clock bass tuning and had a balanced sound signature on what I heard. Nice bass on treble extension on the Layla Aion compared to the T9iE.

And they drove the Ether 2 quite well though the E2 are quite efficient. The SP2000 and Kann Cube have the most power of any of the non-amped AK players and it helped really bring out the subbass on the Ether 2.

Also the microsd card slot is now at the bottom of the unit and doesn't need the cellphone pick to change the card compared to the SP1000.

Didn't have a SP1000 on hand to compare unfortunately.