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Focal Stellia Review, Measurements, Interview - Head-Fi TV

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by jude, Feb 12, 2019.
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  1. teknorob23
    Don’t be sorry to ask £3k is a lot of money for you not to be sure. Unfortunately I can’t help because i only listen at low to moderate volume, because I have sensitivity in one ear thanks to a decade of playing techno in clubs with monitors blasting inches from my face, followed by a a career in production. I have to baby my hearing, which is why love the stellia, because they give such a full sound and complete presentation, even at lower volumes. Is there no where you can demo them?
  2. GreenBow
    I am the same in that I would not use headphones loud. On that subject, I have a DAP with EU volume limitation on it. While I go a bit over that limit, it's not by much.

    However I do have odd moments when I turn stuff up. (I have DACs that can go loud.) Plus I was worried the bass clipping noise could come in earlier generally that I would think normal.

    I really don't think there is anywhere local to me with a demo pair. There actually only seems to be only a few retailers with them anyway.

    Thank you for getting back to me
    Last edited: May 21, 2019
  3. noplsestar
    I sometimes am listening to rather loud volumes and there is no clipping at all!
  4. GreenBow
    I was just starting to think that volume clipping if it happened, would have probably been mentioned again. What teknorob23 mentioned about price was very true though. A lot of money to spend if I am not sure.

    I suppose one other thing that made me think, was the drop off around 10K. Jude's measurements suggest it falls off quite a way, and quickly. Additionally I noticed someone comment that the Stellia is very slightly north of neutral.

    However What HiFi reviewed the Stellia saying it was (words to effect) slightly warm. Meaning just tilted off from the treble. That would agree with Jude's graphs a bit.

    I think overall though, the signature is fine either way.
    Last edited: May 21, 2019
  5. noplsestar
    I think you should stop reading about the Stellia and try to audition it. It might be your tuning, it might not. Just listen to them, then you will know if it is worth to spend so much money. Unless you have enough in your pocket anyways :wink:
    TooFrank and up late like this.
  6. up late
    ^ agreed. poring over reviews, other people's listening impressions and headphone frequency response measurements will only get you so far, and is no substitute for first-hand experience.
    Last edited: May 21, 2019
  7. domho7
    Pruss 1 I believe in listening to your ears
  8. GreenBow
    Well I would not call reading 44 pages of a thread so much pouring over reviews. In fact there are not too many pro-reviews of the Stellia. Additionally even if I could find a pair to audition, which I have said is very unlikely. There is no surety that the pair I trek off to listen to, will be fully run in. However I have reached the point where making my own move is the only remaining step.

    Head-Fi was the place to allay my fears though, as only users could answer my questions. (Isn't that partly why we do this? I know I give generous information when I can.) It seemed the right thing to do.
    Last edited: May 21, 2019
  9. TooFrank
    +1 I came home with the Stellia's 7 days ago after I demo'ed them in a shop with my iPhone 8. The initial listening back home with my more advanced set-up was kind of: is that really it?Probably just some second thoughts of doubt. However, after a few hours I started to realize what I invested in. And here after 200 hr burn in - I'll never look back:) (or at the measurements, for that matter). But indeed, for me, it was a big decision......
  10. up late
    a google search brought up several reviews of the stellia and this thread contains impressions of it, which you've obviously read, if not "pored over". :wink: you have asked questions, which have been answered here, and you can ask more if you wish.

    i can only speak for myself, but i wouldn't be relying on the subjective experiences and impressions of other users to allay or confirm my fears about purchasing a $3k headphone. good luck with it anyway.
  11. GreenBow
    There are quite a few reviews of the Stellia. However there's only one from the big five reviewers, that being What HiFi. Still missing, HiFi Choice, Hifi+, HiFi News, and HiFi World. (Four of which I have a cheap digital subscription to.)

    When I find a product is loved by all of them, it's usually a safe buy. When every other reviewer likes some equipment also, I feel safe enough to buy without audition if necessary. Like Chord Mojo, or Hugo 2. (Although Chord Hugo TT2 didn't have any reviews before I bought it.)

    However why do I need a sociological profile of what I have done? All I did was ask three sensible questions. Then make one comment on signature, implying I think I would be happy either way. Like I said, there's no local audition point. I might have to jump in with both feet.

    You make me feel I am not worthy to be in this thread. While you are polite, your comment could be read as passive aggressive. I know an audition would great, but sometimes it's not practical. Honestly, if there was audition point, I'd be on my way.
    Last edited: May 22, 2019
  12. up late
    so it can't be just any "pro-review", it now has to come from "the big five". :wink: with regard to my posts, i have no control over how you perceive them but i do try to be polite. as i said, "good luck with it anyway".
    Last edited: May 22, 2019
  13. AndrewH13
    Hi Greenbow, Stellia was reviewed in last months (May 2019) HiFi News. Is that the one you don’t have a subs? :)
    up late likes this.
  14. TooFrank
  15. GreenBow
    Well spotted. (Thank you vm.) The HiFi News, Stellia review, is actually in the May 2019 edition, and HFN is now on (digital) June edition. …….. (The magazine I am not subscribed to is, HiFi World, because they don't do a digital edition. Means stacks of mags around the home, if we buy print. I like HiFi World though. I also like having mags around to pick up and read too, but I always end up with too many.)

    I am not sure how I missed that review. However I have read it. I think what must have happened was I read it in passing. I was thinking about Focal Clear at the time, and because it was Focal, took note. I only more recently got onto thinking Stellia, by which time, the May edition was not being re-read.

    Anyway, reading again right now. Not sure what to do though. Am thinking also about the Meze Empyrean. Or even a total change and buy some better IEMs, and Focal Clear. I think another purchase comes first, but once my mind is made up, I'll jump one way or another.

    (By the way anyone, the Meze Empyrean is reviewed in the latest issue of HiFi+, issues 171, page 112.)
    Last edited: May 23, 2019
    AndrewH13 likes this.
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