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Audeze LCD-2C Classic - Impressions Thread

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by XERO1, Oct 7, 2017.
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  1. I g o r
  2. franz12
    It's debatable, but someone in the clear thread says elex is downgraded version of elear. we just don't know, so there is some risk getting elex. if you can, just get clear. it has clearest sound i've ever heard. it's not bright or dark. literally, it is so clear.
  3. givemetacos
    I promise I'll eventually get around to doing a full review on LCD2C, but I pretty much never write reviews within the first few months of ownership. I like to let new toy syndrome wear off and I actually write most my reviews after upgrading to another headphone, or at least a headphone I consider "better", as that gives me more critical perspective. Did you not appreciate grizzlybeast's comparison of LCD2C and LCD-2F? When I first read that I totally thought of you and thought you would appreciate it. I must say without being able to do a side-by-side comparison of the two, what he describes mirrors what my thoughts are. My own comparison review will be very much in line with what he said. And his comparisons to AFO are how I heard them as well. Basically, all his reviews and conclusions end up being the same as mine. In fact, based on his ratings of the more recent open backs released, I am in complete agreement with his final scores for each with Auteur > Clear > LCD2C >= AFO

    To help you out with the graphing, here's the LCD2C against a various assortment of other LCD-2's that Tyll has measured over the years:


    I think the takeaway here is that they are all very similar, with most differences happening around the 8-10k region. But remember when I posted the 2 different LCD2C unit measurements from the "other" site and that treble area is also were those differed too. So yeah, I think a lot of comparisons might have to do with driver variation more than anything. Also, pre-fazor LCD-2 was notorious for huge driver variation. So much so that the "other" site would have meets and compare a whole bunch of pre-fazors together and then people basically graded how each of them sounded relative to each other. They even used A, B, and C ratings for grading. The A rated ones are unicorns that do something magical, but there aren't very many of those. I have heard a single pre-fazor LCD-2 once, but I don't know how it sounds compared to others. From my brief time with it and from my notes I took, I believe it was indeed "darker" than both current LCD2C and 2016 LCD-2F. I feel like LCD2C falls in between both those. I've told you this before, but I just don't think they are so hugely significantly different that it is worth trading your LCD-2F for LCD2C, particularly because you know you are happy with it. Why mess with that?

    Regarding AFO, here is a graph comparing it to LCD2C:


    That one is harder to align so I picked 600 Hz as the alignment such that the midrange lines up closer. Basically AFO does fee more warm because of the mid-bass bump centered around 100 Hz. It is quite noticeable when listening to it. But it does not sound ANYTHING like Atticus IMO. Atticus slams much harder and has far more bloom than AFO. AFO being planar is still a much tighter type of bass response and doesn't have the cup reverb like Atticus. It also doesn't have the same type of lush and smooth mids that Atticus has. Tyll's Atticus measurements are kind of weird IMO and I think both Eikon and Atticus are headphones that don't sound anything like they measure. Atticus is just more dynamic and less laid back compared to AFO, and I find it has better soundstage and more resolution as well.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
    gLer likes this.
  4. Jhya
    I've got the LCD2c for about 3 weeks and also a LCD 2F 2016 and HD650.
    Here are my comparison of LCD2c and LCD 2F. (I'm not doing a review of the LCD2c as most other posts already covered it, and I think are spot on.)
    With A/B of several songs, the immediate impression of the LCD2c is that it is much more toward neutral, dry, and slightly darker compared to LCD 2F.
    The bass of the LCD2c extends slightly lower to the sub bass but the LCD 2F hits harder and have more impact. Both to me have amazing bass.
    When listening to vocals, the LCD 2F has that amazing smooth creamy and romantic mid-range that is so intoxicating. When switched to the LCD2c, the dry and neutral tone immediately throws me off. Kind of a dull and unexciting feeling. Also the roughness in the voices sometimes comes off.
    Before the LCD2c came, I always felt the LCD 2F was slightly rolled off on the highs and never sounded hot. But with the LCD2c, it's even easier to listen to, especially with modern pop or rock it's very laid back and non-fatiguing.
    The music feels smoother on the LCD 2F but sometimes can smooth over details. However, just when you're so engaged in the music, clear creamy background details creeps up behind my head and makes me go WOW.
    The LCD2c has more precise imaging and shows off smaller details better. But there is less WOW moments due to the dryer unexciting tone of the phone.
    Don't get me wrong, both are still LCD in its heart with amazing bass dynamics and really easy to listen to. But the expectation that the LCD2c is basically LCD 2F without fazor is completely not true. I even feel the mid-range vocals on the LCD 2F sounds closer to the HD650 (with HD650 slightly more forward), smooth and so creamy!
    However, for modern pop or electronics, I think the LCD2c is easier to listen to. After 3 weeks of LCD2c, I'm starting to fall in love with the laid back and easy listen nature of the LCD2c. As a whole package, It just does so many things right!
    trellus and Bob Foster like this.
  5. givemetacos
    Could you clarify "LCD2c is that it is much more toward neutral, dry, and slightly darker compared to LCD 2F"? If you find LCD2C more neutral than LCD-2F, but you also find it darker than LCD-2F, does that mean you find LCD-2F to be bright of neutral? And therefore LCD2C is darker and closer to neutral? If so, I guess I haven't heard LCD-2F described as being bright of neutral.

    I overall agree with your conclusions. I do think LCD2C feels more dry, which I do think contributes to it feeling faster, detailed, and have better imaging. But I agree it doesn't feel as smooth and lush as HD650. I also agree with you that the tone is a bit "unexciting" to me as well and doesn't really give that "wow" factor. I think its strengths are being really laid back and a pleasant, easy listening headphone. I also use it mostly for modern pop and electronic too.
  6. Jhya
    Sorry for the confusing terms used; I'm not well versed in the audiophile descriptions. To clarify:
    For tuning of the sound signature, I feel it goes like this warm->neutral->cool similar to a monitor.
    It has nothing to do with brightness or midbass impact as some would associate with warm. Warm to me feels more smooth and creamy. LCD2c is still toward the warm side of neutral but less colorful or romantic than LCD 2F.
    For brightness, I feel like it goes from dark to bright. It has nothing to do with loudness. For me, the LCD2c feels slightly darker than LCD 2F and easier to listen to. Both are darker than neutral.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
  7. gLer
    Thank you, as always a detailed and helpful assessment! Other members will do well to study your responses.

    I definitely won’t be trading in my LCD-2F for an LCD-2C; they’re too similar and more of a flavour sidegrade, so it’s really not worth the hassle. Besides, I find the LCD-2 more than comfortable with the Lohb strap (more than some people seem to be reporting with the new suspension strap), and I do think the leather pads and headband, metal cup rings and solid case really add to the value of the package, especially since I baby them and keep them in their case between listening sessions (I alternate with Atticus so they don’t get used every day).

    If anything I’ll trade them up one day for an Auteur, which has gone straight to the top of my totem pole as the perfect partner/foil to the Atticus. I think with the Auteur/Atticus you really have a TOTL open/closed combination that’s almost impossible to beat for even twice or three times the money, with further investment rather going towards similarly TOTL sources. I can’t think of anything you won’t be able to listen to in the highest fidelity possible and with the most enjoyment than those two headphones.

    But I digress - will take any further talk of these headphones to the appropriate thread, and only mentioning it here in context with the LCD-2F/C comparison.
  8. DiabeticWalrus
    Just want to update my lack of bass issue from *many* pages back, but I received my Magni 3 yesterday and after testing only a few songs I could tell a definite bass improvement than using just my Fostex HP-A4, and these LCD's definitely liked the extra power. Much happier with these now that I'm hearing/feeling what I did before when I auditioned the LCD2's before I bought these.

    The point being, I didn't do my homework and hopefully this helps someone else thinking these don't deliver like they should, because they do! They just need to be properly fed a good amount of power :)
  9. capetownwatches
    Erudite and comprehensive summation. Nice work on the graphs too. :thumbsup:
  10. mtmercer
    Joining thread. I've had my LCD2Cs for several months. I don't consider myself detailed headphone reviewer. With that caveat, I offer the following LCD2C impressions:

    1) I got the LCD2Cs as part of the $599 promotion. That is basically stealing IMO.
    2) I had the LCD2Cs and the AFOs at the same time and decided to keep the LCD2Cs. The AFO was a little to closed in sounding and the I also preferred the frequency response of the LCD2Cs. The mid bass hump of the AFO eventually was too much for me. Granted I also have the Ether Flow Open for my MrSpeakers house sound.
    3) The somewhat rolled off treble of the LCD2Cs is great for extended fatigue free listening.
    4) The Headamp Gilmore Lite Mk 2 amp just arrived and I highly recommend this amp for the LCD2Cs (& anything less sensitive). I prefer it to my Jotunheim right next to it. You will look at the specs & doubt it, but it you ever hear it you will understand.
    Dman23 likes this.
  11. franz12
    As a prospective buyer of the Headamp Gilmore Lite Mk 2, I am pretty much curious about it. Is it really that good paying the extra $200 over Jotunheim? I also wonder whether it pairs well with your Ehter Flow Open. I worry about it because I am not sure whether I can pass a blind test versus my Hugo.
  12. mtmercer
    @franz12 - I'll PM later regarding your question as not to derail this thread.
    franz12 likes this.
  13. ld100
    I am having really hard time unplugging left side. Does anyone have the same issue? Did I get a faulty cable?
  14. chef8489
    Mine should be here tomorrow. Pretty excited. Listening to my k7xx now as I sold all my other headphones when I auditioned the Oppo Pm-1 and discovered the planar magnetic headphones. I still love my Iems and my portable setup, just need something for my desktop and hope these fit the bill.
  15. Hifi59
    Yes, I do. I mentioned this in an earlier post as well as mentioning that I personally feel the cable holds the 2c back a bit from sounding its best. I just emailed Audeze to let them know about the problem. Btw, it will come off more easily if you unscrew the connector on the cable a bit as an interim solution.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2018
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