The A&futura SE180 is Astell & Kern’s first music player to use a detachable and everyday replaceable DAC module mechanism.
SE180 is the third version in the line of high-end music players A&futura of Korean audio company Astell & Kern, after the SE100 and SE200. Compared to its predecessors, which allowed users to choose from different DAC configurations, the SE180 is a complete upgrade in its modular design, and users can purchase and replace the DAC themselves instead of having to change it. machine as before.
The product still has the characteristic angular design of the player from Astell & Kern. Due to the full metal frame, the machine is quite heavy, with sharp beveled edges that make it uncomfortable to hold but feel luxurious. The front is made of glossy tempered glass, which can change color according to the viewing angle.
Has a removable design but the machine’s processing quality is good, when installed and opened many times, the joints are tight and firm. However, opening and closing is quite difficult because it has to press two latches at the same time and requires someone with strong nails to pull the module out of the body.
According to the manufacturer, the discrete modules will have different configurations, DAC components and amplifiers, adjusting the audio output. The default type that comes with the body contains the ESS ES9038PRO DAC, which supports 32-bit/384 kHz PCM, native DSD256 and MQA audio.
Like on Kann Alpha, SE180 also has a sophisticated and eye-catching volume knob. Right below there is an additional backlight displaying colors according to the music playback state of the device, such as red for 16-bit music, green for 24-bit music, blue for 32-bit and purple for DSD music.
On the top of the machine is an audio output attached to the default module, which includes 2.5 mm; 3.5mm and 4.4mm for a variety of headphones. All are gold plated for increased exposure. Each module can come with different audio outputs to suit individual needs. Astell & Kern plans to launch two more DAC modules in the near future.
USB-C charging port for the device and can be directly connected to a computer for data backup. Besides, there is also a memory card slot that supports expansion up to 1 TB in addition to 256 GB of internal memory. SE180 is also the first model of Astell & Kern with new audio technology Teraton Alpha, upgraded from Teraton in terms of power, amplification… The machine also supports Wi-Fi, Bluetooth supports LDAC, aptX HD and AAC.
SE180 has a 5-inch touch screen with Full HD resolution with anti-glare. Based on the Android operating system, the manufacturer deeply customizes the interface to be more consistent with the design and focus on the music player.