The black device has a stylish metal housing with cooling fins and internal power supply. Never let the French be accused of abandoning their heritage of baroque ornamentalism. We interview Focal's Nicolas Debard who … Lastly, sound pressure stands at a strong 106 dB, allowing for excellent volume in all but the most demanding listening environments. But unfortunately after 15. That’s to say, while they have a number of different design elements than other Focal headphones, including color offerings, they carry that classic Focal headphones look, the beautiful mesh grills on each ear cup, and so on. Switching from the Focal Clear to the LCD2C felt like a drop in a grade or two in the sound quality but I could listen to it for long hours. Focal Clear Over-Ear Headphone Review Focal, the high-end speaker manufacturer out of Saint-Étienne, France has expanded its high-end headphone line with a new entrant, Clear. Focal calls these headphones reference-class, which signals the company’s aim for a purist sound that exaggerates or diminishes as little as possible. Focal lives up to the most exacting of standards with its Stellia: they’re dressed in full-grain leather, they have thick memory foam cushions that clamp your head into a vice of loveliness, and their aluminum yokes, woven cables, and contoured hard case just exude quality. The Stellia are closed-back in design, and their impedance has been reduced to 35 Ohms to make them friendly to portable audio sources. Pieces of a Woman arrived on Netflix on January 7th but the film’s ending and final scene have prompted questions and need to be explained. However, the agency is hopeful that Joe Biden will reverse the decision. To a great extent, Focal has taken the big demanding beast that was the Utopia and refined it down to a more humane offering. Take the similarly priced Focal Clear, for example. Coupled with the fact that these headp… Vox Media has affiliate partnerships. Without a closed enclosure that creates unwanted reverberations inside the ear cup, an open-back headphone design can be focused on improving the acoustics pointed at the ear instead of fixing the problems created by the shell around it. If you’re only going to listen to underground rap or grime, you’d probably be better served by a cheaper and bassier alternative like Focal’s own Elear, but if you want to genre-hop and truly feel the differences between various productions, the Stellia do that better than almost any other headphones. The vast majority of headphones on the market today are closed-back, including almost all earphones. Israel has fought several wars with Arab states: defeating Egypt, Syria, Jordan and Iraq in different battles at various times since 1948. Absolutely. On the few occasions that we buy things for ourselves that cost upward of $1,000, it’s usually an item of luxury or technology. The freshly announced Focal Stellia are the latest, and among the most successful, specimens of the luxury-tech hybrid. For more information, see our ethics policy. I naturally did try, and after some crisscrossing of London’s streets, I felt like I’d been wearing a giant ginger afro wig. They are what people think of when they think headphones: a way to take your music on the move, keep it private, and isolate yourself from a noisy surrounding. When you take the headphones out of the box, you’ll immediately be dazzled with the metallic look and great feel. Nevertheless, reviewers from sites, such as Head-fi, SoundGuys, The Verge, and Headphone Review all gave it a spot on their list. I was on the verge of sending of the Focal Clear back because it didn't make sense to own something that I can't really 'use'. To learn more or opt-out, read our Cookie Policy. I like them, for the most part, as they’re thick, durable, color-matched with the headphones, and just stiff enough to resist kinking and tangling. The Focal Clear (2017) hasn't managed to earn a top spot in any roundups from sources that conduct trustworthy hands-on testing. With the Arche model, Focal offers you a premium device for stationary use. The Arche is Focal’s first source and amplifier offering for the world of audiophile headphone listening. Last but not least, I have to mention Tadashi Tajima’s Shingetsu album of shakuhachi performances. Focal actively encourages thinking of these as a more portable, more universal version of the Utopia — but that look of theirs, together with the sheer, irreducible bulk, makes for plenty of curious stares should you ever try to wear the Stellia out on a walk anywhere. By What Hi-Fi? It is closely matched to Focal’s line of high-end headphones, and in fact has pre-set configuration options for each of them, intended to get the best match. Are the Focal Stellia worth wanting? With the Focal Stellia, much as was the case with the Focal Utopia before it, I hear rather than feel it. The Verge was founded in 2011 in partnership with Vox Media, and covers the intersection of technology, science, art, and culture. The noise isolation of the Stellia is good for headphones in their heavyweight class, but it’s still nowhere close to the passive isolation you get from, say, studio cans like the Sennheiser HD 380 Pro that were designed for the purpose. That being said, it’s safe to assume that the Stellia at $3,000 is basically blowing whatever headphones budget you have for the next decade, if not the rest of your life, on one single pair of cognac-colored cans. There’s even an awesome leather wallet for the paperwork, which I’d immediately adapt into a classy passport holder. We’re living in a time when luxury and tech brands keep flirting with each other’s products, whether it’s $2,000 iPhones or even pricier Tag Heuer watches running Wear OS. Focal Clear Headphones - Review - HiFi and Music Source This is my review of the new Focal Clear open backed on ear headphones, retailing near £1,500 (UK, Jan ’18) these are a must listen if you are near this budget for a pair of high-end headphones. Also the brown showing on the circles of the cups is apparently a layer of leather, also gleaned from the Verge article that @pwjazz posted in the Focal Elear deal chain.. Not sold on the color scheme…but I can appreciate the artistry of it, and the effort that went into making it a “luxury” item. By choosing I Accept, you consent to our use of cookies and other tracking technologies. In spite of my bass-loving ways, I gave the Stellia a fair chance and, over time, I grew to really appreciate and enjoy them. Frequency Range: 5-40,000 Hz Nominal Impedance: 35 ohms Sound Pressure Level (SPL): 106 dB As you can see from these specifications, the Focal Stellia claims a fairly wide frequency range. The level of clarity and treble becomes too much. Nearly one year ago, Focal unveiled its first ever dedicated headphone amplifier, the Arche ( $2,500 ). And the $999 Elear aren’t too bad either. But that begs the question, is this devic Focal Stellia Review, Measurements, Interview - Head-Fi TV NOTE: If you can't see the embedded video above, please CLICK HERE to see the video. However, sensing those differences for yourself in such a direct and instant way is a big part of why people are willing to spend big on high-end audio gear. UN aid agency for Palestine on the verge of collapse The UN aid agency for Palestinian refugees is on the verge of financial collapse after US President Donald Trump withdrew funding in 2018. Another subtle but significant change from the Utopia: the cable connectors plugging into the Stellia have been simplified to standard 3.5mm plugs. Open-back headphones, on the other hand, are for people who are willing to compromise on versatility and noise isolation for the sake of the best sound. Here’s the problem: the absolute best-sounding headphones, to my preference and that of many others, don’t sound perfectly flavorless. We use cookies and other tracking technologies to improve your browsing experience on our site, show personalized content and targeted ads, analyze site traffic, and understand where our audiences come from. Seems like Focal has done a great product development on the Clear and for the price level its a winner! The first 15 minutes, were exactly as you claim. The finest headphones you can plug directly into your phone’s dongle. Given the performance contained within those glamorous cognac walls, I’d say Focal has done an amazing job of reducing the need for additional equipment to get the most out of the Stellia. Thanks to our wonderful community for donating OVER 2,600 specially chosen gifts to HomeFront’s annual Christmas Wishes Drive. Let’s get away from the price thing for a moment. It’s one of the best headphones on the market and my current reference. Their unsparing sonic transparency isn’t always to my tastes, but it is faithful to the music and technically impressive. HomeFront’s Heartfelt Thanks For Keeping A Sense of Wonder and Hope Alive This Christmas. That gives you access to a huge range of affordable alternate cables, should Focal’s own not prove to your satisfaction. The Stellia are only really semi-closed. Focal Clear; 97 Focal Utopia; 79 BeyerDynamic DT 240 Pro; Expert reviews and ratings. One is a meticulously perfected pop concoction while the other is a deliberately gritty affair, which is news to no one. Nevertheless, it managed to impress reviewers at Head-fi, SoundGuys, The Verge, and Headphone Review enough to make it onto their respective shortlists. Priced at an unapologetic $3,000 and available to buy right away from Focal and Amazon, the Stellia satisfy the demands of both luxury and tech enthusiasts. Picking them up when I get settled in for a day’s work, even taking them out on the move when I feel particularly ostentatious, I get a reliably exciting and insightful performance every time. I’m currently also testing the flagship Audeze LCD-4z, and their fantastically detailed and lifelike sound is underlined by a loving touch of extra bass that makes them nigh-on perfect. This will be a “stream-of-consciousness” or “episodic” review of the Arche, which is on kind-loan from “The HEADPHONE Community” as part of their “Community Preview Prog… Headphone enthusiast, Audeze LCD4, Schiit Yggdrasil, Violetric V281 AMP, Intona Galvanic USB separator , Nordost Heimdall2 2m, 0.6m both XLR … It is. The Hugo 2 was feeding the V281 (RCA) and from there two XLR cables fed the untouched signal to the Aurium. Clear is Focal's next evolutionary step in the realm of high-end, open-back reference listening headphones. The Focal Clear headphones are unmistakably Focal. Alas, I never quite fell in love with the Stellia to the degree where I could advocate doing that. By choosing I Accept, you consent to our use of cookies and other tracking technologies. Once you put them on, they’re also supremely comfortable. Rangers currently sit 19 points clear at the top of the Scottish Premiership ... but he currently stands on the verge of replicating that status at Rangers. With the LCD-4z, and Audeze headphones in general, I feel the bass. The best term I can use to describe it is flavorless: like water, these headphones adapt to and represent the character of the thing they’re interacting with more than any peculiarities of their own. Property owners may develop their verge areas, provided the type or form of development maintains the following; > Pedestrian access along the verge area in preference to walking on the roadway, regardless of whether a footpath has been constructed or not. These headphones are sumptuous to the touch and the mere act of unboxing them is an experience worth paying for. A clear area of at least 1.0 metres width from They are clear and open, but they do have more than a touch of that “things A feature-packed design, this device was offered to be the perfect companion for their ever more impressive line of headphones. The Russia-linked SolarWinds hack which targeted US government agencies and private corporations may be even worse than officials first realized, … Verge Score 9.4 out of 10. So yes, we may all have trouble digesting the huge lump sum of money that Focal asks, but the product itself goes a long way to justifying that expense. Well, the Focal Stellia are like those huge 8K TVs we see only at trade shows, exposing all the nuance you could want from any given song. Impedance remains low, however, and these headphone can make do with less amplification than other headphones in this price range. Powering the Stellia is remarkably easy, and I was able to crank them up to unadvisedly high volumes with an Astell & Kern Kann portable player as well as with Essential’s USB-C audio dongle plugged into my phone. The music and technically impressive Shingetsu album of shakuhachi performances stationary use I could advocate doing that 97 Utopia... 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