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Focal Utopia General Discussion

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by Allanmarcus, Jun 14, 2016.
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Has your utopia needed repair from your dealer or Focal, either under warranty or not?

  1. Yes

    23.9%
  2. No

    61.4%
  3. I prefer not to answer

    14.7%
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  1. musiclvr
    @Music Alchemist

    Speakers will always have better soundstage than headphones. No argument there.

    Soundstage perception when listening to music or watching movies with headphones on is an extremely important factor to consider in my opinion. Soundstage perception also aids a headphone in being able to accurately image too.

    To me a headphone that has a poor soundstage replication makes a piece of music that was recorded in a music hall or auditorium sound like it was recorded in a tunnel or small room. Headphones that have a poor soundstage just tend to narrow music for me which just takes too much away from live recordings.

    On the flip side some headphones, like the HD800S, stretch out the sound stage a bit too much and can make music sound 2 dimensional rather than holographic (maybe due to its warmer tuning?). I came to this conclusion when comparing the HD800S to the Pioneer SE-Master 1 on a 10k system with the SE cable.

    I hope to audition the Utopia one day. Until then I'm gonna start saving my pennies for it.
     
  2. ToroFiestaSol
    If Focal Utopia is that good...just imagine a Rockport headphone :) 
     
    HoloSpice likes this.
  3. TSAVJason
    Are you saying you think Rockport can out perform a comparably priced Focal Utopia?
     
    The Source AV TSAVJason Stay updated on The Source AV at their sponsor page on Head-Fi.
     
    https://www.facebook.com./pages/The-Source-AV-Design-Group/153623164648713 http://www.twitter.com/TheSourceAV http://www.instagram.com/Thesourceavdesign http://thesourceav.com/ Products@TheSourceAV.com
  4. ToroFiestaSol
     
    Well...I heard the Scala Utopia V2 and Rockport Atria (more or less the same price), not in the same room but with similar dimensions and with Vicoustic panels (here in Europe Vicoustic sells a lot), and the Atrias are just WOW.
    I can understand that some people would prefer the Scala Utopia V2, they had a brighter top end, more midbass, a more exciting and V shaped frequency response, but the Rockports had almost any personality, they were completely neutral and impossible to detect crossover points, equally detailed as the Focal but relaxed and natural at the same time.
    I like neutral but no fatiguing audio equipment (I love Stax SR-207 headphones for example), but is preference, what is nice for me can be garbage for other people.
     
  5. TSAVJason
    Sounds like you found your audio nirvana
     
    The Source AV TSAVJason Stay updated on The Source AV at their sponsor page on Head-Fi.
     
    https://www.facebook.com./pages/The-Source-AV-Design-Group/153623164648713 http://www.twitter.com/TheSourceAV http://www.instagram.com/Thesourceavdesign http://thesourceav.com/ Products@TheSourceAV.com
  6. ToroFiestaSol
     
    Yes sir :wink:
    But at 27.000€ for the Atrias, and 9.000€ for an Ayre AX-5 Twenty...is impossible for me :frowning2:
    A 4.000€ headphone and an Audio GD NFB-1AMP would be more reasonable to my poor budget
     
  7. Audio Addict Contributor
     
    That is one way to justify the TOTL headphone rig  [​IMG]
     
  8. ToroFiestaSol
     
    Yes [​IMG]
    I have another reason to want a Rockport headphone too.
    The owner of the Atrias is a friend of my father, and I have a home studio with 3 microphones (and was working in a good one at that time too). I have the frequency response chart of one of my microphones (Stellar CM6), also from a new Telefunken 251e from were I worked.
    I recorded my voice with a very neutral preamp (Audient ID22) with the Stellar, and also with the Telefunken at the studio.
     
    We played the voice recording to the Atria and the AX-5 Twenty, and the voice sounded effortless as real life, but with the exact colorations of the microphones frequency response (oh, and even I heard the noise floor of the two microphones, which are dead silent out from the PMC studio monitors at the studio). The Rockports are flat as a table.
     
    A Rockport headphone mmm, I would buy one without hesitation :)
     
  9. TSAVJason
    Good news!! Our Focal delivery began to arrive last night and today. We are bringing them into inventory today and will be shipping pre-orders and replacement orders tomorrow. So those of you that pre-ordered from us at The Source AV will have them pretty damn soon. Replacement orders on the Elear will be shipped "overnight" and we thank you for your patients. Anyone that wants to pay the difference between our standard 3 day shipping policy and overnight can let your customer service rep know as we call to confirm shipping information. We know that we don't have enough to ship our huge pre-orders but we are assured that the current pre-orders will be fulfilled by the 1st week of September. Being that these numbers are in the hundreds it seems Focal has at least put a dent in the demand on delivery.

    Again, thank you for your patients and if you have any questions please feel free to contact us for shipping status updates or new orders.
     
    The Source AV TSAVJason Stay updated on The Source AV at their sponsor page on Head-Fi.
     
    https://www.facebook.com./pages/The-Source-AV-Design-Group/153623164648713 http://www.twitter.com/TheSourceAV http://www.instagram.com/Thesourceavdesign http://thesourceav.com/ Products@TheSourceAV.com
  10. Audio Addict Contributor
    With none in the Chicago area, I would encourage those in the area to come out Saturday to the Chicago ChiUniFi meet.  The Utopia and Elear arrived today for the meet event.  
     
  11. Audio Addict Contributor

    I should clarify these aren't mine, I can only wish. A special thanks to The Source AV for providing these for our Chicago meet.
     
    TSAVJason likes this.
  12. Audio Addict Contributor
    Honestly, I am at a loss on how to describe the Utopias.  
     
    I have not heard all the TOTL headphones, but I am really struggling with words here.  The resolution / clarity is beyond what I have experience before.  This is with 16 bit regular CD recordings using Roon feeding a WyWires Platinum to a hard plugged-in REGEN into a PWD MKII running balance into a RSA Apache with the Sparkos Labs SS3601 discrete opamps.  The clarity of being able to single out each instrument in its space causes me to forget what is going on around me.   It isn't the gigantic soundstage but it clearly places everyone on the stage where I would expect them to be.  It is not a basshead headphone but I really feel the bass is presented correctly with the taughtness expected for the instrument playing the lower octaves.  The vocal presentation is even more spot on.  I have a live recording playing right now and the comments and clapping from the audience makes me feel I am in their with them.  The 2 vocalists responding to the audience were as if I was right in front.  I can't say whether it is row 3 or 5 but, it is very intimate.
     
    Just thought I would drop a few comments for now.  
     
  13. jibzilla
    I had a chance to listen to these yesterday. Thank you Audio Addict. I would say clarity and transparency is top notch. Just a bit closed in sounding though. I would think about replacing one of my headphones with it but the headphone it would replace is the 007mk1 and I feel that headphone has just about as much clarity and transparency and makes up for that with a speed advantage.
     
    It def. will not replace the hd800 for an open and spacious soundstage and will not replace the Lcd-X as my bass cannon and yeah its closet competition to me is not dynamic but electrostatic. Very 007mk1ish.
     
  14. supabayes
    Are your comments for both Utopia and Elear?
     
  15. Liu Junyuan

    What gear was driving the (presumably) Utopia?
     
    HoloSpice likes this.
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