Altiat CAL.1H — Official Discussion & Impressions Thread
Jan 26, 2022 at 2:29 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 83

voja

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Altiat, pronounced (all-t-a), is the 2nd company founded by Aumkar Chandan. Kaldas Research is his first company, and it's also Altiat's parent company, that is, Altiat is Kaldas Research's sister company. Both companies will exist "independent" of each other, hence why I wrote "is" instead of "was".

I'm very excited to say that Altiat is where you will see more products, more variations, and a whole lot more of experimenting. Kaldas Research proved itself as a very mature company where there are extremely strict rules and standards that have to be met. I pretty much covered all the principles and the whole philosophy in my RR1 Conquest review (if you are interested, you can read it here). Now, although we will see more experimentation, we will not see a drop in quality.

Experimentation/experimenting ≠ experiment
In other words, don't expect junk to be released.

Think of Kaldas Research as a company that will release exclusive/limited products that meet the extreme standards and principles of Mr. Aumkar, and Altiat as a company where we see Mr. Aumkar release more projects that are, more often than not, not limited [stock]. We will probably only see a single product or less a year from Kaldas Research, while we might see a more frequent release schedule from Altiat.

Welcome Cal.1H — Altiat's first product. It's an open-back headphone implementing a 50mm dynamic driver with a PET infilled diaphragm.

Ocean Crush.jpg

Cyan Ocean​
Gunmetal Grey.jpg

Gunmetal Grey​
Aluminium Silver.jpg

Aluminum Silver​
Arctic White.jpg

Arctic White​
Accept.jpg

Anodized Black​
Orange Stone.jpg

Orange Stone​
Solid Ash.jpg

Solid Ash​
Scarlet.jpg

Scarlet​
https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0319/3588/9452/products/DSC05035_1024x1024@2x.jpg?v=1655640086

Miami Vice (Limited Edition)
These are the currently available finishes, and not all of them are the same. I will do my best to keep this section updated whenever there is a new finish. Also, if available, I will also replace the current photos with full-resolution ones.

From manufacturer's website:

Cyan Ocean - The Aluminium housings are Anodized Blue, cups are cold to the touch.
Gunmetal Grey - The Aluminium housings are Powder-Coated.
Aluminum Silver - Raw Aluminium housings are dry sandblasted
Arctic White - The Aluminium housings are Powder-Coated.
Anodized Black - The Aluminium housings are Anodized Black, cups are cold to the touch.
Orange Stone - The Aluminium housings are Anodized Orange, cups are cold to the touch.
Solid Ash - Machined from a solid block of Ash wood, while maintaining all the 3D contours of the CAL.1H.
Scarlet - The Aluminium housings are Anodized in Velvet Red, cups are cold to the touch.
 
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Jan 26, 2022 at 4:02 PM Post #2 of 83

DenverW

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Very attractive headphone!
 
Jan 29, 2022 at 3:57 AM Post #3 of 83

voja

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Got some answers, thought I'd update everyone.

What difference can people expect from Kaldas Research and Altiat? That is, what's the difference between these two companies?

Altiat will be focused on more of the consumer oriented markets in all sectors. Kaldas will only be for the specialty markets and more focused towards R&D.

I assume this would be a question that is more relevant to your business partners than your consumer partners, but how can your business partners differentiate Kaldas Research services from Altiat services? I am referring to your contract services.

All Kaldas contracts are private, government and to a small extent Military based (Airforce). Altiat is for consumer and semi-professional markets. We want to help budding Manufacturers with Altiat.

How is CAL.1H different from what we have already seen on the market?

The CAL.1H is based on a platform which will spawn off multiple other versions. Our intention with the CAL.1H is long term production and we believe this platform can continue to be relevant and sell for the coming decades due it's it's simplicity in function and extremely robust build quality and reliability.


As everyone here probably already knows, @JLoud published a review. Mr. Aumkar also sent me some fresh photography of the Solid Ash option — which currently appears to be the most popular option.
1.jpg

2.jpg

3.jpg

4.jpg
 
Jan 29, 2022 at 9:30 AM Post #4 of 83

JLoud

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I bought the Orange Stone and must say it is a very attractive headphone. Very comfortable as well. I was a little worried about the suspension strap, but it actually works very well. If modern genres are your thing this headphone works great with them. Of course depending on taste, it can be a good all rounder as well. One other thing I found is it scales with better amplification. Kind of rare at this price point. Similar to the HD650 in this regard.
 
Jan 31, 2022 at 12:33 PM Post #5 of 83

bpandbass

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Cal.1H owner here.

For me, this headphone is a natural step up from the HD650, if you are interested in a warm, bassy but detailed headphone. I use mine on the Schiit Magni Heresy, and I get great performance at low gain. The ease of driving these headphones makes them a great open back choice for someone who uses a laptop with a decent DAC, such as the new 14" and 16" Macbook Pros. I mainly listen to electronic dance music, hip-hop, drum and bass, and electronica, and the first upgrade I notice from the HD650 is the bass digs much deeper before it begins to roll off. Additionally, the pad rolling options make the headphones easier to customize to your liking, whereas I found pad swapping on the HD650 causes either the mids to become harsh, or the bass to become out of control.

I prefer the reliability of a dynamic headphone to the questionable longterm reliability of a planar magnetic, so the Cal.1H is the path I took to further explore from the HD650's sound signature. I previously owned the Audioquest Nighthawks, and I ultimately sold those headphones because I found the mid bass and upper bass to be far too bloated, and the midrange too grainy, leaving me with listening fatigue. The Cal.1H solves these issues, while still remaining superlatively comfortable. While not as wide as a Beyerdynamic DT990 or AKG K702 or K712, the soundstage is still accurate, and is a little more defined than the HD650's. Mids and highs are fatigue free, with good extension up top, without being sibilant.

The strengths that ultimately won me over with the Cal.1H are its performance with contemporary genres, its ease of driving and scalability, its comfort, and its cable and pad swapping options. Highly recommended to those who like headphones such as the Sennheiser HD650, Beyerdynamic Custom One Pro, Philips Fidelio X2, Audioquest Nighthawk, and the Shure SRH1540.

My Cal.1H is optioned with Alcantara earpads, and the unbalanced cable with the 1/4" single-ended stereo connector.
 

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Jan 31, 2022 at 12:47 PM Post #6 of 83

kman1211

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I bought the Orange Stone and must say it is a very attractive headphone. Very comfortable as well. I was a little worried about the suspension strap, but it actually works very well. If modern genres are your thing this headphone works great with them. Of course depending on taste, it can be a good all rounder as well. One other thing I found is it scales with better amplification. Kind of rare at this price point. Similar to the HD650 in this regard.
I also got the Orange Stone with alcantara pads and it is a very pretty headphone. Very comfortable and very comfortable sound. I noticed that they scale more than average in this price range with amplification as well. Another thing I find impressive is it's sub-bass extension, it's very good for an open-back dynamic. The bass extension is a big reason these do well with modern genres. Vocals are very nice on these, prominent and present. I also personally like these a lot for gaming and movies/shows. As someone who generally prefers headphones on the warm side these suit my tastes nicely.. Going to be working on a review of these soon and I own a few warm sounding headphones I can compare them to.

A5EED788-C2E0-4A03-9E22-681788830198.jpeg
 
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Jan 31, 2022 at 3:56 PM Post #7 of 83

JLoud

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I realy like that blue bpandbass. Is that a standard color option. I thught about the blue but it looked much lighter in the pics from the website.
 
Jan 31, 2022 at 4:07 PM Post #9 of 83

JLoud

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I already have the Orange Stone, which looks very nice. Just curious is all. I do like that they will make reasonable accommadations.
 
Feb 1, 2022 at 11:15 AM Post #10 of 83

xEcuToR

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I have the Altiat Caliber 1H with me for almost 14 months now.

Its my go to headphone for portable listening with the Lotoo PAW 6K via the pentaconn balanced cables. Its a nifty portable setup, like a semi desktop listening station on the go, around the house.

Recently I have started listening to the Caliber 1H with my Turntable setup. My TT is hooked to a tube phono pre amp which is connected to a Schiit Magni 2 which drivers the Cal 1H at high gain settings, with volume levels below 9 for regular pressings and 10 for quite pressing records.

And I gotta say it is a great substitute to the HD650/600 line as it is easy to drive and comes with options for colors, ear pads that no major manufacturers are offering these days.

I even sold my Sony MDR Z1R, as i was listening to Cal1H more during home use. This one is a keeper in my book.
20220201_212522~2.jpg
 
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Feb 1, 2022 at 5:30 PM Post #11 of 83

voja

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I even sold my Sony MDR Z1R, as i was listening to Cal1H more during home use. This one is a keeper in my book.
Now this, this is what has me excited.

Sony MDR Z1R will forever remain one of the most highly praised headphones ever made, so it truly says something about the CAL.1H
 
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Feb 1, 2022 at 9:18 PM Post #12 of 83

xEcuToR

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Don't get me wrong, MDR Z1R is a great closed back, which scales up significantly with amplification despite being loud when driven by a moblie device.

However, i preferred the Cal 1h when driven by the Lotoo Paw 6k DAP. The Z1R performed slightly preferable to me when driven by a desktop RME ADI 2.

For desktop listening i prefer Estats (Stax SR 007 MK1 SZ1 & Kaladas Research RR1 Conquest) over DD, planar and hybrid electret/BA headphones any day, so all in all MDR Z1R was not getting used as much and it had to go.

Cal1h has a sound signature which is relatively neutral to the Sony MDR Z1R, but it still has a detailed & impactful low end, transparent mids and highs despite not being harsh, tonally i am content, which is its biggest plus point as most headphones coming out these days including the high end focal, audeze, hifiman, dan clark audio stuff do not appeal to me on a tonal level and need a lot of work with the p-eq to sound decent over the digital medium.
 

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