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Audeze LCD-24 LIMITED EDITION - now including impressions and comparisons

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by alexzogh, Sep 6, 2019.
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  1. mixman
    Gotta admit, for me, it's the 4z or 24 not the 4, if I ever buy another Audeze. The 4 is too heavy, too hard to drive and more difficult to get rid of if you need to sell. Before I would consider the 4, I would just stick with the Empy, which I think has one of the best tonal balances out there, even better than the Verite, but I do like the Verite same, well maybe more with my new Zircote. This is especially true since I do not EQ.

    Also could you give a little more detail, bass, mid and treble as why you didn't like the 24?
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2019
    betula and metal571 like this.
  2. metal571
    It's not even the tuning of the 24 so much as detail, which is really lacking in the highs. They're all smeared and there's an annoying 7k ish peak. Mids and bass are fine in tuning and similar to 4Z, but this is a $3500 headphone we're talking about here. I expect it to compete close to 4Z and 4 level on detail and it just doesn't. I'm positive about this and really was quite shocked when I received the 2 review units of the 24 from Audeze. I guess you'll have to decide for yourself next CanJam.

    And yeah, totally agree that the 4 is way too heavy for most people. They need to offer the 4Z magnesium chassis option for the full 4. I'm still scratching my head as to why the 4Z had to be made more efficient and compromised on resolution. If you're spending that kind of money, I'd think the customer already has a powerful amp.
  3. mixman
    Spoke to one of the guys at Audeze a while back and he said it's pretty much the same basic driver, obviously different sensitivity. He said the decision should be easy for someone purchasing one over the other. If you have a powerful amp get the 4 since you will get the most out of the amp that way, especially in regards to dynamics. If you have a low powered amp go for the 4z since that way you will get the best performance from the headphones, because you will underdrive them if you chose the 4. He mentioned they do not see it as a qualitative difference between the two, just a matter of choice in your setup.

    Now of course that may be marketing, but from some others that have compared them side by side or owned both, it seems that the 4 has a more extended treble while the 4z has less of that upper midrange Audeze dip, but less extension in the treble.

    As far as making the 4 less hard to drive, if you notice that is the trend in the industry. There are only a very few hard to drive headphones left out there and no new TOTL headphones that recently came out that are that difficult to drive, It's all about both making them portable, for DAP''s and phones and more affordable in the sense that someone doesn't have to go out and buy an expensive, powerful amp to drive those low sensitivity cans properly.
    metal571 likes this.
  4. metal571
    Yeah I know all about that trend, trust me. I even thought that the Empyrean might have compromised a bit of its detail in order to make it easy to drive, but that's just a guess. I talk with the Audeze guys on the regular, and they've tried to sell me on the idea that the 4Z is super similar to the 4 in sound quality, but that's just not what my ears are hearing. Max Settings and I clearly could differentiate the technical ability of the 4 and 4Z at CanJam earlier this year despite the fact (and it is a fact) that the two cans share the same diaphragm and magnets, but have different voice coil patterns. I was able to repeat this test at home recently and came to the same conclusion, despite what Audeze will tell you. Considering even my lowly THX 789 can drive the LCD4 just fine on balanced, I'm not seeing the point of the 4Z, given its detail tradeoff. That's why what I really want to see is a mag chassis 4, the best of the reduced weight of the 4Z and the full performance of the original 4 driver.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2019
  5. Kopf
    1. I'm pretty sure that Audeze won't change the housing of lcd4. Why? Because it's a luxury product. It has to look expensive!
    2. How much weight you can save with the magnesium chassis? Not that much, wrong direction.
    3. LCD24 have a problem a 7k? Maybe you can give us a music example, what shows of this problem.

    Also I want to apologize to Metal571. I was to rude.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2019
  6. metal571
    1. You thought wrong, fortunately. They've already told me that if you contact their support they will make you a magnesium chassis LCD4.
    2. A lot. The LCD-4Z weighs 600g (weighed it myself on a scale) vs the LCD-4's 735g. The weight of the internals the two models use are exactly the same.
    3. Every kind of music. The mid-treble in general has a lot of glare and the issue isn't subtle. Peak location varies by unit, one of the ones I tested it was around 7k (by ear, using a sine sweep), and the other was closer to 9k. High hats in professionally recorded jazz sound fake and splashy.

    Edit: I like to use some of Tyll's favorites: Medeski Martin & Wood - House Mop and Chubb Sub. But the classic audiophile test track Aja also shows it pretty clearly.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2019
  7. Kopf
    Af first I've edited my post #77. Sorry...

    2. Really? Hard to believe! The only technical difference between lcd4 and 4z is the impedance?
    What is with the magnetic structure?
  8. mixman
    Well damn there goes the 24. Too many mixed reviews on it. I think their goal was to go after the Empyrean, but it seems like they may have failed. Some owners and others who heard it on the thread like it, some don't. Too mixed to take a chance on this can. As for the 4 vs the 4z I guess I would be willing to take the sonic hit of the 4 vs the 4z for convenience. Weight and ease to drive are in favor of the 4z, in case I get a low powered tube amp for instance or really need to drive this from my Fiio Q5.
  9. metal571
    From what Audeze has told me they've simply rearranged the voice coil pattern to drastically reduce the impedance of the headphone, without adding weight to the moving mass. Everything else is exactly the same.

    Yeah I guess you're kinda stuck if you absolutely have to have a high sensitivity flagship Audeze. TBH I feel like I might prefer the LCD-X over the 4Z. I haven't A/Bed those two back to back though like I have with 4, 4Z, 2F, and 24. There's also the MX4, which just...was very unimpressive at CanJam, but I haven't heard that at home yet either. Supposedly LCD-24 was just an experiment that people at shows expressed enough interest in, so they are making a limited run of it.
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2019
  10. Kopf
    Just the voice coil. That's indeed in terms of weight not much.
  11. metal571
    Yes. The driver "film" that makes up the diaphragm is the same between 4 and 4Z. They slowly deposit (I think that's how they explained it) the voice coil onto this film to form the final driver, so basically a negligible difference in mass of the internals going on there.
  12. mixman
    Are you going to check out the Rosson Audio anytime soon? I have sort of dismissed it for it's ergonomic issues.....heavy weight, clamping force and odd cable configuration and fit, but some have said that it sounds like a better balanced Audeze.
  13. Kopf
    Yes, I think they called it a serpentine voice Coil because of the structure.:)
    metal571 likes this.
  14. metal571
    I want to. But at the pace my reviews move it'll probably be a while. My audiophile friend group says it really isn't that impressive at all after bringing it home despite it sounding decent at shows, but I don't know exactly why.
  15. Thenewguy007
    Yikes, what was your chain when using the 24's?

    Maybe they just have bad synergy with specific systems?
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