Astell & Kern ACRO CA1000T Desktop Headphone Amplifier and DAC

Astell & Kern
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All-In-One Head-Fi Audio System
Engineered as a full-featured, all-in-one desktop system that can be taken anywhere, the ACRO CA1000T from Astell & Kern is a versatile and elegant portable DAC and headphone amplifier with the ability to elevate your mixing, playback, and general audio listening experience to new heights. Capable of playing back PCM audio up to 32-bit / 768 kHz with up to DSD512 decoding, the CA1000T delivers ultrahigh-resolution audio through a diverse range of outputs including mini-XLR and RCA line, as well as four sizes of headphone output for matching any ear listening device between 32 and 600 ohms: 2.5mm, 3.5mm, 4.4mm, and 1/4".

Along with multiple digital and analog input options, such as digital RCA coaxial, 4.4mm, USB-C, and 3.5mm optical, the ACRO CA1000T sports onboard Bluetooth 5.0 with Qualcomm aptX HD technology for high-quality LDAC streaming, as well as dual-band Wi-Fi, ensuring that you will always have a reliable way of feeding audiophile audio through your DAC. The onboard 720P touchscreen display makes operation and selection of the many settings a breeze, and the internal lithium-ion polymer battery can be charged via USB-C for premium quality audio anywhere. Choose between four levels of gain, three amplification architectures (op-amp, tube, or a combination), and much more, for the ultimate high-fidelity listening experience, whether in your home, on-the-go, or even onstage.

Convenient, High-Quality Sound
The ACRO CA1000T goes beyond the limitations of a fixed headphone amp with its ideal Head-Fi audio system that can be setup anywhere you want and can run independently of its internal battery supply. The ACRO CA1000T offers detailed headphone sound thanks to its built-in high-powered headphone amp. It's all-in-one Head-Fi audio system provides great connectivity with external audio devices and speakers thanks to its diverse range of input/output ports, allowing you to easily enjoy network audio playback and music streaming.
Extensive I/O Options
The ACRO CA1000T offers an extensive range of input/output options that can meet the needs of audiophiles looking to build their ideal Head-Fi system with maximum utility. For greater ease of use, you can change the input/output settings using the touchscreen on top of the product while multiple cables and devices are connected.
3.5mm, 1/4" Unbalanced and 2.5mm, 4.4mm Balanced Output
The output port located on the front side of the product is compatible with a range of sizes so that various headphones and IEMs can be connected, including both low-impedance and high-impedance varieties. The 3.5mm port may also be used as an optical output.Enjoy the powerful output and dual-tube sound with any device of your choice.
Mini-XLR and RCA Output
Balanced mini-XLR and unbalanced RCA output, with circuits that minimize noise and distortion, offer the best sound for external audio devices through the line output. These outputs can effortlessly support active speakers as well as a desktop Head-Fi sound environment.
4.4mm, Coaxial, and Optical Input
ACRO CA1000T can receive signals from various external devices via its coaxial and optical digital inputs as well as a 4.4mm analog input, so that users can build their perfect audio system. Receive digital and analog signals from an external DAC, interface, or external source devicesm, and use them with the convenient integrated CA1000T system.
USB Input, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi
ACRO CA1000T supports USB-C DAC functionality. Enjoy perfect sound from both Mac and Windows PCs, as the CA1000T can play ultra-high quality sound sources. In addition to this, it supports network play such as AK Connect and Roon Ready, as well as various streaming apps through high-quality Bluetooth 5.0 and dual-band Wi-Fi, completing a perfect all-in-one Head-Fi audio system for audiophiles.
It would have been impossible to realize powerful output for the most detailed headphones or the complex signal path of a low-noise, dual-tube, and triple-amp system without TERATON ALPHA, Astell&Kern's unique technology that has been designed to produce audio playback that is as close to the original sound as possible, through effective power noise removal, efficient power management, and unwavering amplification, as well as a fully converted audio output interface. Astell&Kern further improved TERATON ALPHA using knowledge learned from the design of the hybrid tube system found in our SP2000T and the noise removal from the CA1000.
Four Levels of Gain
To run the most detailed IEMs and most demanding headphones perfectly, an output is required, which matches the characteristic of the receiving device. The ACRO CA1000T supports four gain level settings, so almost any headphones can be driven to an optimal state. The four levels of gain can create the ideal output for a device’s characteristics and sound, allowing users to fine tune and dial in their desired volume output.
The ACRO CA1000T is designed with dual ES9039MPRO chips, using the newest flagship DAC from ESS for the first time ever to offer more vivid and voluminous sounds. The ES9039MPRO is an additional ES9039PRO model that has a built-in stereo hardware MQA renderer.

It has even more advanced modulation than the existing flagship DAC to reduce power consumption, noise, and distortions inside the DAC for enhanced audio performance. Astell&Kern invented and optimized a new design of amp block to heighten the performance of the ES9039MPRO, allowing it to offer more balanced and intense sounds with deeper and richer bass and clear highs.

Seven Versatile DAC Filters
With the ACRO CA1000T, you can pick and choose from seven DAC filters to create your own sound style.
  • Minimum Phase (Default)—Low latency, minimal preringing and low-pass-band ripple
  • Linear Phase Apodizing—Full image rejection by FS/2 to avoid any aliasing, with smooth roll-off starting before 20 kHz
  • Linear Phase Fast Roll-Off—Most common filter with clean suppression and high rejection, best for music with high transients and provides crisp, clean highs
  • Linear Phase Slow Roll-Off—Low group delay and symmetrical inputs response. Less ringing than fast roll-off with punchy bass and clean highs
  • Minimum Phase Fast Roll-Off—Minimal preringing, preferred for imaging and soundstage. No aliasing in frequency domain and sports strong bass with clean highs
  • Minimum Phase Slow Roll-Off—Nonsymmetrical filter designed to minimize preringing. Strong, punchy bass with good transient attacks
  • Minimum Phase Slow Roll-Off Low Dispersion—Provides a nice balance of low latency and low dispersion
Fully Balanced Circuit with Two Tubes
When a product is equipped with a dual DAC and one vacuum tube there must be a separate circuit to convert the signal to balanced right before the output terminal. This structure requires a process to convert an unbalanced signal to a balanced signal, during which noise gets amplified in the process.

The CA1000T, however, offers a completely balanced circuit that separates left and right channels with two twin triode KORG Nutube vacuum tubes, creating even more natural and softer sounds. Both Tube Amp and Op-Amp modes provide a powerful 15 Vrms output, and the headphone ports allow you to enjoy the unique sounds of vacuum tubes without any limitations.

Triple Amp System, the Next Generation of Amp Technology
Select between Tube Amp mode, Op-Amp mode, or the brand-new Hybrid Amp mode. Op-Amp mode puts Astell&Kern's amplifier expertise to good use, delivering extreme clarity and dynamic sound, while Tube Amp mode provides a uniquely warm and musical sound. Hybrid Amp mode—a first for digital audio players—enhances the resolution and clarity of the existing Tube Amp mode to express more musical detail.

Hybrid Amp mode, combines the advantages of retro analog performance and high-resolution output, giving you the pleasure of a brand new tonal characteristic. Experience the unique sound enhancements that this amp technology has to offer.

Custom Designed to Minimize Noise
A special custom design minimizes microphonic noise that may be caused by external shocks and vibrations. To address the structural issue of vacuum tubes, where microphonic noise is created even by the smallest shocks or vibrations, A&K repeatedly developed new designs and conducted thorough reviews and testing during prototyping. Both sides of the vacuum tube are fixed with flexible silicon covers to minimize shocks, and a magnetic force is used to physically separate it from the PCB, offering greater stability and isolation when the tube is operational.
Speaker Effect for Headphone Listening
In a headphone environment in which the left and right channels are clearly separated, ear fatigue may increase during prolonged listening. The moment you turn on Crossfeed, the experience of crisp, but comfortable sound begins.

Crossfeed mixes parts of the original signal from one channel and sends that signal to the opposite channel with a time difference to center the sound image. Through the use of detailed settings such as Shelf Cutoff, Shelf Gain, and Mixer Level, you can set the level of crossfeed according to your listening preferences.

Real-Time Information Using Light
The LED light, reminiscent of a vacuum tube light, allows you to check the bit-depth information of currently playing music or the amp mode being used.

Playback Mode

  • 16-Bit: Red
  • 24-Bit: Green
  • 32-Bit: Blue
  • DSD: Purple

Amp Mode

  • Op-Amp: Red
  • Tube Amp: Orange
  • Hybrid Amp: Blue Green

And with up to a 15 Vrms output, it can run high-impedance headphones with ease. The output ports' electrical capacity has been raised to add stability when operating devices with different impedances at the gain level setting, and the separate balanced and unbalanced volume controllers optimize electricity flow and reduce noise for the best sound.

1 year warranty from date of purchase. Headphones SG is a Astell & Kern authorised reseller. All Astell & Kern products purchased through Headphones SG is eligible for warranty.