Astell & Kern A&norma SR25

Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 – The new “little” one…

Once again, iRiver Ltd. is expanding its range of Astell & Kern branded portable Hi-res audio players with a solution that ranks at the lowest price point in the range. The new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 is a DAP that leaves nothing to be desired and comes with impeccable features.


The company iRiver Ltd. has been dealing with the topic of portable audio players for decades. It was even one of the first manufacturers to rely on “MP3 players”, which were rather smiled at by hi-fi enthusiasts, and to establish them on the market on a broad front. But then the brand Astell & Kern was launched, and this was where the above-mentioned hifi enthusiasts were addressed, with so-called DAP (Digital Audio Player), which did not rely on lossy MP3s, but rather on audio data in FLAC or other lossless formats. Here too, iRiver Ltd. can clearly be cited as a pioneer, as this product category was also made “presentable” by the manufacturer’s great commitment.

The Astell & Kern brand has already produced many a product generation and can refer to a very wide range of products. Now, the current generation is once again being expanded by a solution that ranks at the lower end, namely the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25. The Astell & Kern A&Norma SR25 is the successor to the Astell & Kern A&norma SR15, which in turn was considered the successor to the Astell & Kern AK70 MKII and Astell & Kern AK70. At first glance, the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 looks very much like its direct predecessor, but inside, almost everything has been redesigned so that the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 clearly stands out from its predecessor. According to the manufacturer, the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 is the second model in the Astell & Kern A&norma Standard Line.

Thus, the new Astell & Kern A&Norma SR25 now uses a quad-core processor, which is said to bring a huge performance boost. The processor now has 64 GByte NAND memory at its side, which can be expanded by up to 1 TByte for audio data using microSD cards. This should probably be enough even for very extensive media libraries, so that you can actually always have your favourite music with you.

The operating system is also new, after all, it is important to be able to make full use of the numerous technical innovations. These include the Astell & Kern A&norma SR25’s 3.6 inch WVGA touchscreen TFT display, which offers a resolution of 720 x 1,280 pixels, so that the manufacturer speaks of an HD display.

Two Cirrus Logic CS43198 DACs handle the signal processing, so the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 uses a so-called dual DAC design. This enables it to reproduce audio data in Linear PCM with up to 32 bits and 384 kHz in bit-to-bit playback, as well as DSD up to DSD256. The list of supported data formats ranges from MP3, OGG Vorbis, APE, AAC and WMA to WAV, AIFF, ALAC, FLAC, DFF, DSF and data encoded in MQA.

The signal processing can not only be used for data stored in local memory, the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 also serves as a portable DAC, whereby a USB-C interface is available for connection to a PC or Mac.

The new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 can also contact the outside world via Bluetooth, whereby it has a Bluetooth 4.2 module and supports the A2DP and AVRCP profiles, as well as the SBC, AAC, aptX, aptX HD and LDAC codecs. The possibilities of the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 with Bluetooth thus extend to hi-res audio.

WLAN is also offered, whereby a module in accordance with IEEE 802.11n is available via WiFi, the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 can also be used as a dlna-certified UPnP streaming client, thus allowing direct access to your own content in the network.

Streaming services are also available, with TIDAL being the most prominent, because iRiver Ltd. uses Google Android as its operating system under the hood, but due to its own closed user interface, the user is not aware of this and can only install applications that are “released” by the developers.

Apropos operating system, possible updates are done in the proven way via so-called OTA updates (over the air).

The new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 not only has an unbalanced 3.5 mm stereo mini jack socket for connecting headphones, it also has a balanced 2.5 mm jack socket, with 2 mV power available in the first case and 4 mV in the second.

The integrated 3,150 mAh 3.7 mV lithium-polymer battery of the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 is said to have a playing time of up to 21 hours, whereas charging on a 5V 2A power supply via USB takes about two and a half hours.

The new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 has a particularly elegant aluminium casing with the futuristic design currently predominant at the Astell & Kern brand. The design is called Moon Silver and the device weighs 178 g with dimensions of 63.5 x 108.3 x 16.1 mm.

The new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 is available from specialist retailers with immediate effect. The recommended retail price is stated by the manufacturer as € 799.

Getting to the point

The Astell & Kern brand has already produced many a product generation and can refer to a very wide range of products. Now, the current generation is once again being expanded by a solution that ranks at the lower end, namely the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25. The Astell & Kern A&Norma SR25 is the successor to the Astell & Kern A&norma SR15, which in turn was considered the successor to the Astell & Kern AK70 MKIII and Astell & Kern AK70. At first glance, the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 looks very much like its direct predecessor, however, almost everything inside has been redesigned, so that the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 clearly stands out from its predecessor. According to the manufacturer, the new Astell & Kern A&norma SR25 is the second model in the Astell & Kern A&norma Standard Line.

Manufacturer:iRiver Ltd.
Distribution:Audio Tuning Vertriebs GmbH
Price:€ 799,-

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