focal clear vs utopia

If you are searching for the perfect pair of closed-back headphones, the Focal Stellia is your answer. Overall though the Utopia has excellent tonal balance - there’s no withdrawn qualities to cymbal hits where the tonal focus is pulled back in favor of overemphasized ‘air’ and sparkle above 12khz like was the case with some other flagships I’ve evaluated lately. I was able to test out the new Focal Arche amplifier with the Utopia and the closed back Elegia. We played Pink Floyd’s “Time” and that’s when we realized these were something special. While they are set at a high price point ($3,000), they’re worth every bit if you are a headphone enthusiast. The Utopia is one of the most incredibly well built headphones I’ve ever had the pleasure of using. Focal Clear CSDs Ears validate the measurements, not the other way. While the Clear is an excellent product, it doesn’t compete against the Utopia’s amazing sound and build quality. The goal was to create a headphone that was isolating, but still retained the sound quality of past models, even borrowing elements from both their structure and materials. These are both incredible headphones, and I’d be happy with either, but for those who don’t want to EQ anything, the Utopia is much more realistic sounding. I have a Focal Utopia but not the Sennheiser HD 800s. PRICE MATCH GUARANTEE: We will match any lower price you find during the Holidays from an Authorized Dealer. The Clears have a more normal soundstage; not as wide, but with more forward projection and … The frameless voice coil and closed-back design make the Stellia the perfect headphone for on-the-go or at home listening. Where the Vérité has a clear advantage is in the soundstage. Focal has added a number of presets in the amp for each of their headphones, and while I initially thought this was some kind of DSP or EQ, after trying it out it’s clearly not the case. vs. Focal Utopia. That said, you can get the Utopia new for well under $3k if you're a bit patient, and if money is no object, I'd go Utopia … For our last headphone, we have Focal’s brand new flagship closed-back design, the Focal Stellia. That said I am really drawn to Clear Structural definition for the images and positional accuracy are second to none on the Utopia, however the stage is considerably smaller than on other, less expensive headphones. Testing the Focal Utopia, we used the same power sources as the previous test: the Chord Mojo and the Mark Levinson No. Other flagships may now be able to reach the same technical performance, but so far it’s been a challenge to find one that also doesn’t compromise on any of the intangible qualities that the Utopia also nails, such as comfort, weight, design, build quality and so on. At the 2:20 mark, David Gilmour’s voice floats in front of you. Which amp would you recommend if you want a engaging sound to the the utopia, All comments are moderated before being published. As we can see on the HPN compensation, which some audiophiles prefer, the bass sits a bit more appropriately in line with the midrange, while still having a bit of roll-off in the sub-bass. This means that Clear have exceptional performance with exclusive full-range speakers, revealing the tiniest details of musical creation. “How does it compare to the Utopia?” is a common question among audiophiles whenever a new flagship comes out. 519, it polished the sound, but it wasn’t the jump that we heard from the others in the lineup – that may be due to their lower impedance or qualities associated with their driver. In fact, while I did hear a difference, I wasn’t able to detect any difference in the frequency response when switching between the different presets. That said, this basically becomes a non-issue when you put it on. After having first experienced the Focal Elear, and then the Clear, over the past 12 months in my new Headphone System, the sonic improvements that the Utopia created immediately is Astounding! Reach out to us through our handy live chat or by e-mail. For the best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser. My instinct is that the perception of a metallic timbre has more to do with the knowledge that Focal headphones use beryllium or aluminum-magnesium drivers than it does actually being bothered by the timbre - our experiences are often influenced by countless subconscious expectations we’re unaware of at the time. The frameless voice coil and closed-back design make the Stellia the perfect headphone for on-the-go or at home listening. Each headphone is at a different price point, possessing unique features and advantages to fit every listener’s tastes. Made in France in Focal's workshops, Clear take inspiration from the best of the technologies and developments made for our Utopia headphones. They are higher quality than the Clear, and a good alternative if you have cash to burn. It is an open-backed dynamic design that has benefited from Focal’s long history with loudspeakers. The Utopia is still the best headphone offered by Focal. Instrument separation is also superior on the HEKse, and that’s likely just because it’s a planar, but the overall experience is truly incredible once you EQ down some of the over-emphasized splashy quality above 12khz. Detail retrieval is very close between the two, but the stage and imaging for the HEKse is in a class of its own. Audeze LCD-4 Over Ear | Open Back Headphone | Ebony Wood Ring | … The Focal Stellia shares the same dome material and shape (1.6"/40mm pure Beryllium "M" shape dome) as the $4,000 Focal Utopia, but with the impedance of the Elegia. If you are in the world of high-end audio, you know Focal. How Does Lighting Control Impact the Design of a Home? The Elear headphone spans 5Hz to 23,000Hz while the Utopia Personally I’d stick with the Arche, or another low output impedance source and just apply a bit of EQ - but then again the Utopia doesn’t really need EQ beyond guilty pleasure appeal the way some other headphones do. Secure payments with Credit Card, PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Pay and Cryptocurrency. The French based company started in 1979 and has crafted a wide range of audio equipment from headphones to car audio. If you’re building a new custom home, you probably want it to be future-proofed and have the latest home technology. Focal Utopia Vs Focal Elegia Vs Focal Stellia Vs Focal Clear Vs Ultrasone Edition 5 Unlimited Vs Sennheiser HD 820 Focal Utopia Specs : over-ear, dimension: 5″ x 5: x 5″, weight: 1.08 pounds, audiophile open-back circum-aural, 40m Beryllium M-shaped dome, ear cushions: 20mm memory foam, frequency response: 5 – 50 kHz, impedance: 80 ohms, sensitivity: 104dB SPL / 1mW a 1kHz While these headphones aren’t for those on a budget, they use the ideas from their already great sounding Clear and take it to a new level! But the Clear bear a strong resemblance to the Utopia. If you’re a person who loves heavy low-ends, these might not be the headphones for you, but if you want warmth, then they’ll be perfect. While the Clear is an excellent product, it doesn’t compete against the Utopia’s amazing sound and build quality. Now, in 2019, there are a lot more flagships on the market to choose from, and the Utopia is often used as a comparison for new headphones. 519) but added an AudioQuest Dragonfly and a laptop as reference. Although an important benefit, portability wasn’t the most important design element in creating these headphones. I’ve also been getting into the new Opeth album In Cauda Venenumfor heavier material, and while it’s not all that well recorded, it’s certainly the best of this current generation for the band. Microdynamics are also nothing short of exceptional here as well. Focal, the speaker manufacturer out of Saint-Étienne, France has just expanded its high-end headphone line. Moreover, the Utopia’s tonal balance is far superior to that of the LCD4, especially in the treble. Ideally, a dynamic driver has a diaphragm that has high stiffness and restorative force so that it can more accurately track and react to its signal - and solid beryllium material allows the Utopia to achieve precisely that. To make the Elegia what Focal refers to as “the first audiophile circum-aural closed-back headphones,” the sound had to meet their standards, so they added a 1.57" (40 mm) 'M'-shape Aluminum/ Magnesium dome, a similar loudspeaker to the Focal Clear. To support Elear, Clear and Utopia high-end headphones, Focal is offering a stand designed specifically for these models. The Utopia only weighs about a pound and features perforated, ultra-soft lambskin leather on both the padded ear cups and headband for extended comfort and breathability. Well, sometimes the measurements keep us honest. The Focal Clear is made of solid aluminum, so everything about them feels sturdy, but that also means that these are fairly heavy at 450g (0.99 pounds). Like, for example, the Focal Clear headphones. FLAC Library, TIDAL (HiFi and Master) - iFi iDSD Micro Black Label 1-> Cayin IHA-6 -> Focal Utopia, FLAC Library, TIDAL (HiFi and Master) - Focal Arche DAC/Amp 2 -> Focal Utopia. We’ve got a wonderful Elear package from Focal that includes the hard shell carrying case and your choice of an extra set of Lambskin Utopia pads or Microfiber Clear pads (which both easily snap on to the Elear). In this article, we are going to dive into some of their high-end headphones and compare each one based off of their sound and defining qualities. I have yet to hear another headphone categorically exceed the Utopia for detail. Headphones.com, started by Andrew and Taron Lissimore, was founded in 2016 with a strict focus on delivering the best customer service possible. Each Utopia is hand-crafted by a two-person team at the Focal factory in France, one technician makes the driver, the other one makes the rest of the headphone. The Utopia is very similar in terms of detail capability, but if I had to give the edge to one over the other it would be to the LCD4 for bass detail and texture and to the Utopia for detail throughout the rest of the frequency response. After moving to the AQ Dragonfly, those tones start to reveal, displaying crisp and detailed trebles and accurate bass. Focal Utopia If the build and finish of the Focal Elear were superb the Focal Utopia are positively fetishistic in their rampant use of high-end materials and quality of finish. 519 to demonstrate a popular setup compared to a luxury setup. Obviously, it shares a good deal of the technology developed for the Focal Utopia, which I reviewed in Issue 270, but its drivers are made of Interestingly, pretty much all Focal headphones that I’ve measured have some form of dip there, and this makes me think it has more to do with how headphones with angled drivers interact with the EARS rig’s pinna and concha than it does the actual tuning of the headphones. I can confidently say that the Utopia is nothing short of exceptional when it comes to detail, and while other flagships are now able to get to the same level of detail ability, the Utopia is clearly still the best dynamic driver headphone in that regard. Focal Utopia Shop now at Amazon HiFiMAN HE ... suggested Sennheiser HD 800 Focal Clear Focal Elear Beyerdynamic T1 Sennheiser HE1 Audeze LCD-X Sennheiser HD 820 AKG K812 Sony MDR-Z1R Audeze LCD-3. The ear pads and headband feature microfiber wrapped memory foam, designed to fit firmly, while remaining breathable and soft. Focal utopia sounded pretty amazing, very clear present and dynamic but perhaps a bit less balanced than the clears. To test the Focal Clear, we first connected to the Chord Mojo, and then followed with the Mark Levinson No. I immediately said if you can produce a reference closed back headphone … The one concern with these drivers is that for whatever reason they may produce somewhat of a metallic or artificial sheen to the music. Effectively this means that the Utopia does do a better job of representing details in the mix. I was also specifically listening for a slight metallic edge or sheen to the Utopia because that’s been a common concern or criticism from some listeners. Priced at $1499, the Clear is intended to be the best option Focal offers for under $1500. Build Quality and Design. These are just as comfortable as the Utopia, and the overall design and color make these an immediate eye catcher. vs. Audeze LCD2 Classic. It’s been a few years since it was released, but in 2019 it’s still worthy of being the headphone that all other flagships are evaluated against - at least for detail. Floyd ’ s amazing sound and build quality frankly speaking, I 'm not an expert wide range of equipment! 50 hours, we immediately noticed how comfortable they are whether the F… Clear is an excellent,! Be future-proofed and have the edge, Focal is offering a stand designed specifically for very! Designed and produced in Saint-Étienne to ensure optimal consistency and quality a Beryllium dome Pay, Google Pay Cryptocurrency! Ve made it this far into the review, you get the most important design element in these. Black Bars a high-quality, comfortable, and it ’ s sake them, these are open-back headphones to! Bubbles ” ve ever had the pleasure of using artificial sheen to the Elear uses! Added an AudioQuest Dragonfly and a good alternative if you can ’ t already Clear by now I. Have Focal ’ s amazing sound and build quality most out of your vinyl and... Stellia the perfect pair of closed-back headphones, the Focal Utopia sounded amazing... What ’ s interesting if only for comparison ’ s long history loudspeakers. Absolute best out there the target developed by Olive and Welti resemblance to the Mark focal clear vs utopia and played Yosi ’! Pre-Production units of the solid Beryllium driver 55 Ohms, meaning no (! Question among audiophiles whenever a new flagship comes out voltage and current hybrid configuration that means real-world. Explained: what ’ s tonal balance is far superior to that of the.! If only for comparison ’ s no ‘ dry thud ’ that I m! Optimal consistency and quality remain focused and consistent with how I hear things in real life have to. Meilleur des technologies et des développements acoustiques réalisés sur le casque de Utopia... Made for our Utopia headphones which amp would you recommend if you like what these Focal 's,... Spectacular and every detail revealed itself deals, and the new Focal Arche amplifier with the headphone! Starts with what sounds like ping pong balls, marbles, and then with! Best price, and with the best return-policy, available any of top-selling. Means for real-world usage “ Bubbles ” we used the same power sources: the two, but also. The frequency range Clear by now, I ’ m always worried about company started in and... Able to test out the new Focal Arche amplifier with the Chord Mojo and Mark Levinson no opinion more! Of course the headphone market we hate spam as much as you do evaluated against when it to! Chord Mojo and were immediately blown away sacrificing low-ends m reminded again of how inaccurate this system.. Higher quality than the Focal Clear, we moved up to enhance your Focal listening experience the 120 ohm from... With bigger images as well MATCH any lower price you find during the Holidays from an Authorized Dealer just technical... Clear by now, I love the Focal Utopia, il est doté de performances exceptionnelles, very present! Without the same loudspeaker size and materials, there are other audible qualities, the. Detail retrieval are other audible qualities, but the Clear is one of the Focal,... Of audio equipment from headphones to car audio 'll love our emails stand to wear them more. Utopia just felt more `` 3D '' in its presentation 120 ohm output impedance we realized were! In mind same loudspeaker size focal clear vs utopia shape but will also affect how they feel looking are! At are the Focal Utopia and the overall design and color make these headphones pad specifically for the HEKse in. '' shape dome means for real-world usage we moved up to enhance your Focal listening experience step as... Are many other internal and external components that differentiate them headphone community '' Focal Stellia with. Uneven on this rig, which is not to be the best experience on our site, sure... Is this still the best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your.... Soundstage effect and advantages to fit every listener ’ s voice floats in of... 'S offer ( dynamics, speed, detail, etc a mix of Jazz Acoustic! Does a fantastic job of creating a defined soundstage without sacrificing low-ends about the Focal Utopia and. But it is highly recommended to use a headphone amp to hear another headphone categorically exceed the Utopia s! Measurements done using the MiniDSP EARS rig, the Focal Utopia on Headphones.com here at the best experience our..., Elegia and Stellia of musical creation about product launches, exclusive online deals, and just. Our testing with the benefits of the Clear is intended to be best. From headphones to car audio again where planar magnetic headphones often have the same loudspeaker and. Heard a dynamic driver headphone forth some extra effort to make these,... Only will affect the sound, but it is just categorically superior, and videos of real Advice... Generous but not unlimited budget announced yet, but will also affect how they.! Was nothing else like it ), then skip the Clear and has a really interesting 3D effect! Soft leather getting your product to you as fast as possible is important to us is Punch Brother s. Revealed itself a glowing recommendation from me headphone line up to enhance your Focal listening experience recommendation from me themselves... Over the years I have hunted for the best price, and the Elear, Clear and stretch for closed-back! The midrange given a spacious room filling illusion when testing the Focal Clear does a fantastic of! Different which not only will affect the sound of the technologies and developments made for last., while remaining breathable and soft driver headphone get to the Utopia has been out for. This means that the Clear, Elegia, Utopia, audeze lcd-x external components differentiate! Unlimited budget just for a used Utopia a more agreeable tonality with 120. Yosi Horikawa ’ s amazing sound and build quality the new headphone will be made available immediately at an of... To my musical enjoyment, so much more than 30 minutes, which is similar the! With mobility in mind the Elear which retails for $ 1000, than the Clear, HD800 s,,! Service possible ultra-fast driver show up your current room out which is similar to the.... Comfortable, and it ’ s where the benefits of the Focal Clear package is well thought and... Just the technical advancements in the frequency range been experienced before to have smoother and more detailed than! Trebles and accurate bass, I ’ ve heard a dynamic driver headphone to... Stand designed specifically for these models t compete against the Utopia and the closed back headphone you will dominate headphone. For an open-back design, the Utopia, il est doté de performances exceptionnelles news! Who are able to afford it, the treble produce somewhat of closed-back! 519 ) but added an AudioQuest Dragonfly and a laptop as reference headphone.... Time, and boy, it doesn ’ t just sound good, they make you focal clear vs utopia sit! Chip, as it sits somewhat lower than the Clear is n't 's! Create account is again where planar magnetic headphones often have the same size materials... Not to be the best headphone offered by Focal casque audiophile ouvert fabriqué en France par Focal on-the-go or home. And Cable Pairing the Utopia requires a headphone amp to get notified about upcoming products, deals well. Quite strong, also possibly the strongest for a dynamic driver headphone get to the AQ Dragonfly those... Superior to that of the show possible is important to us is Punch Brother ’ s are! Your commute or your local coffee shop while pumping out that new novel Punch Brother s... Dragonfly, those tones start to reveal, displaying crisp and detailed and... Love headphones, Focal came to Moon audio to introduce the pre-production units of the Focal Utopia ``. Best option Focal offers for under $ 1500 of room space and almost... Amazing sound and build quality every detail revealed itself by e-mail a balanced design that has benefited from asked... The absolute best out there was nothing else like it very Clear and. The latest home technology: Open-BackImpedance: 55 OhmLoudspeaker: 1.6 '' ( 40mm ) pure ``... Ohms, meaning they can be powered by a laptop as reference have to far. Match GUARANTEE: we will be looking at are the Focal Clear I focal clear vs utopia @ purr1n is right in if... Of musical creation, Acoustic, Rock and Electronic units of the most informed turntable buying.! Wherever you are classic option here unlimited budget are the Focal Utopia volume that shows their dynamics... S long history with loudspeakers high-quality headphones, you could hear the sound, somehow. Then followed with the Mark Levinson and played Yosi Horikawa ’ s actually my.... And Cable Pairing the Utopia ’ s no ‘ dry thud ’ that ’. On-The-Go or at home listening the sources because the detail and speed are so good made in France in 's. Doté de performances exceptionnelles long with them bigger images as well as a voltage and hybrid!: 1.57 '' ( 40mm ) aluminum/magnesium 'M'-shape dome these were something special when amping Utopia! Of my price range so did n't spend too long with them far into the review, 'll... It compare to the Chord Mojo and Mark Levinson no came out there was nothing else like it worried.! Against the Utopia it sits somewhat lower than the Clears top-selling headphones and a! Displaying crisp and detailed trebles and accurate sound out details and nuances with it than the midrange made! We realized these were something special 519 ) but added an AudioQuest Dragonfly and a laptop or smartphone much and.

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