I'm going to be looking for an aftermarket cable that terminates in a 4pin XLR for my Liquid Carbon myself. And this makes HD650 feel more laid back in its overall presentation while Elear is far more aggressive and punchy. Inspired by the best technology and acoustic research that went into designing Utopia, our flagship headphones, they offer truly exceptional performance. And clamp force is on the tighter side, but not at stock HD600/650 levels. That should tell you where my biases lie, with more musical listening experiences rather than neutrality or super-high resolution. I don't find Elear to sound all that different on the various solid states so my impressions are consistent with any of those sources. You'll also need to drop like 1k on source gear for the hd800 to be at its best. However, its dynamic nature provides for an interesting listening experience where an intimate soundstage can still feel rather full and detailed. Elear has more air and separation up top with a brighter overall sound. The attack is quite sharp with quick decay. Cymbals sound accurate without demanding listener attention by drowning anything else out. i am getting Utopia in two weeks, but this review made me decide to also buy the Elear!! People really valued Tyll's WoF (I would argue his WoF had a lot of marketing influence at the high end and could make or break companies) and I think most reviewers then and still to this day understand and support his choices for all the headphones he chose, even if a particular headphone wasn't their personal preference. The Elear, to put it simply, does not. Focal Elegia ($899usd) vs Focal Elear (now $700-750ish): As stated elsewhere, I rather enjoy pulling the Elear out for a run to clear my thoughts between reviews. The Focal Elegia are above-average critical listening headphones. I have read tons of comments you have given on so many forums as i have read probably a hundred pages on the elear, elex, and clear. In my eyes, the Elear is like if the Elex got into an angry drunken bar fight. The instrument that stands out the most on the Elear is the piano, particularly a grand piano. It's sturdy and without microphonics, just over-the-top. Any $1,000 headphone needs to do something really, really well. The chunky, batch-producing nature of the Elear is really quite impressive. An average dude like me doesn’t subscribe to the marketing practice of being sold a lifestyle rather than a product - and I would find all that luxury-positioning pointless if the sound quality was average-at-best. The treble extension even gives instruments some air around them. I have very similar music taste to you, and mostly just use my Klipsch Heritage Amp and Tidal as a source (not really hearing much difference in MQA vs Hi Fi). I have heard some people still find Elear to be harsh in treble, and this might be more noticeable because of the sharp rise in energy from low to mid treble. And along with that, after his review I never really heard Tyll speak much about Elear afterwards and he never really gave it WoF worthy praise any time he referenced it in other places. Sound signature is really similar, but more dynamic than my HE560. All joking aside, the weight distribution on this headphone is such that allows for this. What the Elear does in this song is take every sample and bring it up close and personal to the listener in a manner that would be undoubtedly more strikingly noticeable than on many other headphones in this price range. I'll post the text here, but if you want the full experience (photos and other video links), then I invite you to check out my site. Completely agree with your viewpoint. It doesn't appear in any feeds, and anyone with a direct link to it will see a message like this one. It really is a pretty headphone, and looks even better in person. Questions like: Do the clears handle volume better? But it does have pretty thick padding on the headband as well as plush earpads that feel like a velour/cloth type of material. 96 votes, 32 comments. This cable is 13ft/4m and shielded so thick you would think the answers to the meaning of life are hidden within. Everything else is lacking compared to HD800. It is nice as a stand though. Are the clears actually less fatiguing? However, I do prefer dynamic headphones over planars, estats, or IEMs (though I own all of those too). I recently acquired an Elear with Utopia pads and case because of the awesome deal going online right now. If I had listened to that track with the Massdrop x Fostex TH-X00, the heartbeat sound would have been emphasized over all else. Even though LCD2C’s upper mids are recessed, it does so in a very smooth and linear slope and not like the cliff in Elear. While some models go for a workmanlike design, you’ll find nothing of the sort here – even at this price. I'm in the same boat as you and the only thing keeping me from doing so is the dip in the upper midrange. With the three pairs of Focal open-back pads you effectively own 3 slightly different signatures..which is pretty cool imho. When I had them side-by-side, you can definitely feel a difference in firmness/“compressability”(?) However, upper mids/low treble is where things start to fall apart. However, the Elear are open-back headphones, while the Elegia are the closed-back variant. However, LCD2C feels ever more premium than Elear and feels more durable. I don't. There were only a small handful of headphones pushing that price point--HD800, LCD-3 (LCD-4 wasn't quite out yet), HE-1000, and maybe a couple others were at that price point. I listen to a broad range of music and I tend to own many headphones that specialize in certain things to fit my preferences rather than go for single all rounder headphones that don’t stand out in anything. It is more detailed, has a much bigger soundstage, better imaging, and offers a much more natural and cohesive sound. The HD800 has crisper presentation of orchestral strings for sure. Th-X00 has more bloom. Focal Clear review: One of the finest headphones money can buy (and you'll need lots of it) Once you hear Focal's Clear, you won't be able to go back to your old headphones. What the Elear does instead is reproduce sound in what seems like batches, with each second of listening presenting a number of sounds in equal measure. i love the sparkly treble as well. Elear is better for a more lively and fun sound. If you truly are happy with your Elear+Utopia pad combo I wouldn't drive yourself crazy wondering about Elex or Clear. 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