I first saw and heard Glove at Newport this year, and I was very impressed both by the quality of the build and the sound. The basic idea is fairly simple — take your legacy Astell&Kern digital audio player (an AK100 or an AK120), bolt it into Glove, and use Glove to do your conversion and amplification. Why would you want to do this? Well, to be fair, the AK100 was outstanding on file management and support, but only so-so on sonics. Off-loading that might give those early-adopters (and there were a lot of them) the ability to spruce up their old toy with a jolt of screaming adrenaline. Heh heh.
The two units fit together like someone built them to … fit … together. Hmm. Um, yeah. Sorry — fit together like a glove. Had to be done. But the name totally fits, when joined, they’re really one unit. The two are obviously going to be a bit bulkier in the hand or pocket than the AK unit by itself, but it’s less awkward than it sounds. Trust me. And the fit and finish on this Glove unit is robust; it seems tough. Which is good. Because I’m clumsy.
The sound, however, is absolutely a huge step forward for the little AK player. There’s more of everything — more detail, air, bass, blah blah blah. The fact that Glove drives the snot out of headphones is just pure audio joy.
Release is upcoming, as are the finals on the details, so stay tuned. We are.