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Meze EMPYREAN - the First Isodynamic Hybrid Array Headphone

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by MezeTeam, Feb 9, 2018.
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  1. ken6217
    Where did you come up with that line? Sounds like you’re trippin. :ksc75smile:
  2. MadDane
    I'd be trippin' if I had the Emp's to listen to!!!
  3. ken6217
    That’s true. This is the first headphone that I’ve owned where I’ve been truly satisfied.
    bimmer100 and betula like this.
  4. Roasty
    I've just had my utopia grand line lavricable reterminated for the empy.

    Been listening for the past 3 hours. Compared to the moon audio silver dragon, the overall presentation has been brought forward a notch. bass has not really changed in amount but is definitely tighter and has more texture. Feels like there is a bit more "sparkle" up top. Doesn't feel like any change in the mids.

    I feel the lavricable is better suited for the empy than the utopia.
  5. Darthpool
    I have these on loan from https://www.kitsunehifi.com and so far they are a very fun headphone.

    Here is a stream of consciousness post (different forum) from my first listen, and then a couple days later:

    “Ok, listening to these through the ADI-2DAC and Phonitor XE...and... well I kind of want to go back to the Airist R-2R -> HoloAudio Azure chain... they feel lifeless, in comparison. Very accurate, the bass has lost some oomph and feeling, still there just not emotional. Very detailed, doesn't feel as wide, imaging is still great, feels like lows are recessed, and mids are more forward along with highs having some brightness to them. It is crazy how neutral/uncolored the Phonitor/RME ADI-2DAC combo is, it really is an extremely revealing combo and will find any flaws with your chain.

    With this combo, the Empys are from my memory on par with the Utopias, with better bass, and to my ears less detail and imaging quality.

    Just swapped to my Verite...and instantly prefer the Verite sound over the Empyrean...Need more time to verify with proper a/b...but as of right now...with some quick song swaps and HP swaps...Verite takes it. I'm going to play with these two for the next 30min or so...I'll update this post if I have more thoughts...

    Switched to the micro suede, comfort instantly went up, on an already amazingly comfortable headphone. Also, the bass is up, highs tamed a bit, a little more forgiving. More in line with the Verite now...let me switch and continue my stream of conscious...

    Verite is back on my head and they are sounding less fatiguing? Hmm...odd. Something about the highs is bothering me with the Empys, can't quite pin it down. I'm fairly positive it is just a preference thing unique to me though.

    Time to switch to the Azure and do some a/b...


    I...DO...NOT...WANT...TO...LIKE...THE...AZURE amp...I...DO...NOT...NEED...IT...FML...

    Wow, the Azure amp is nice, it definitely is doing something to the sound...slightly less fatiguing...well I should clarify the chain does not have the ADI-2DAC, but the Airist R-2R DAC, which I'll have to do a proper comparison of the amps on the same chain to make sure the major change is the amps and not the DACs.

    I really like this combo, I'm on the Verite. Yes, I think I'm more of an "emotional" listener...give me color, give me life, emotion, I want to have goosebumps =) I will say the Azure does have some...quirks...it almost has an artificial sound at times...which breaks the feeling I'm getting from it, but it only occurs on occasion, this is both with the Verite and the Empys.

    ...sorry...Empyrean thread...not amp thread :wink: ...

    Emps are back on the head...I think I figured out something...they sound slightly congested compared to the Verite, mind you, it is very slight. But with the chain I'm using I can pick it up. It on occasion loses its imaging and detail, and feels like noise being thrown at me...this I do believe is due to the mastering of some of the tracks... I also can be overly sensitive to this sort of thing and is probably why I like the HD800, Verite, and now SR1A so much, as they do imaging and detail so well. I do not blame the Empyreans for this, as it is a quirk of mine and that they seem to not handle bad sources very well. But still, more time is needed. :wink: conscious stream to continue for maybe another song or two...

    They really can pick up some cool details in tracks that are mastered well though and really do shine...they are definitively the best Planars I've heard to date for extended listening. Which to be fair, I don't have a lot of TOTL Planar experience. The closest TOTL extended listen I've had was the LCD-X and these blow those out of the water easily, but are almost 3x the price.

    Just for reference sake, I'm listening to my Qobuz library on random...It mirrors my Spotify playlist that I've posted a couple of times and can be found in my reviews.

    Ending on this track, and it is very relaxing and highlights a lot of the great things the Empyrean can do:


    and here is the youtube, I'm not posting the official video...it is, well...not my thing:


    And from a couple days later:

    “Ok, so more head-time finally...work is starting to slow down thank goodness. I am back on the Phonitor XE and ADI-2DAC chain.

    I am enjoying this much more than the first go around. Brain break-in :wink: these are smooth, mids feel a lil' distant, along with the highs. But not in a bad way, more in a relaxed way. I think these are definitely in the relaxed listening realm. I can see just leaning back imbibing and enjoying some great music.

    I'm having a different feel to these, this go around. Nice detailed (not as much as the verite), and fun. The bass is smoooooooth! I could see these being an instant buy if they were a bit cheaper. For the price, I think I would rather go with the Rad-O with my own custom coloring options or even the Stelia, but like, that is just, like, you know, my opinion man! But that is as of now... we will see when I have more quality time with them.

    For now, I think I'm just going to enjoy them, for what they do.

    Another note...these are very well made and very good looking! the chassis and the aluminum cutouts are fantastic, they look really, really good. Also, very comfortable, a little clampy, but not bad at all, also very light on the head. The Suede pads are amazingly comfortable! I will have a hard time swapping them out, but not physically as they just pop off, they are magnetically connected similar to the way CA Cascades are. I wish more headphones took this approach to pads.

    Time to get a couple more tracks in.”

    And some photos I took (I’m still learning how to take photos, trying to be artistic lol)

  6. Roasty
    Nice thoughts and pics!

    I tried the Verite very briefly at the shop, paired with matrix audio sabre pro and benchmark hpa4. Did some quick a/b with their empy and I preferred the empy.. To me, the verite sounded a bit darker, slightly bloated mid bass, and felt a bit congested. Also, there was something a little off about their imaging but I just can't seem to find the words to describe it. Anyways, this was the silkwood variant.

    Despite the above, for some reason I don't know, I've always been (and still are) curious about the verite and am on the edge to pull the trigger to order a pair. Keen to have a longer listening period with them to get to a better conclusion.
    Darthpool likes this.
  7. mixman
    On the Verite pads at least......that strange imaging might be that they are more 3D. Kind of like I prefer the suede pads on the Empy for imaging.
    Darthpool likes this.
  8. Darthpool
    Yeah once you acclimate to the Verite it is pretty addictive. Especially with a good tube amp. The Empyrean is growing on me, the bass is interesting as it feels like it comes from above and around me, which threw me off initially, but as I’ve acclimated, I understand what I’m hearing and find it very fun and relaxing style of listening. It makes sense with the design layout of the membrane and what Meze has stated regarding the upper portion handling the lows with the tighter coil handling the kids and lows directed towards the ear opening. Look forward to this innovation trickling down and improving.

    I’m still more of a dynamics guy, but I really appreciate what the Empyrean is doing.
  9. Rowethren
    What about the Verite Closed? Then you get similar tuning but has the advantage that it fills a slightly different niche to the Empyrean so you can justify having both :beerchug:

    I am certainly tempted by that prospect...
  10. Roasty
    oh yes, you are right. am waiting on the closed back version to be released.
    i did try the focal stellia but did not really like it that much compared to the utopia. hope the closed back verite does not dissapoint.
    Rowethren likes this.
  11. betula
    And I am definitely a planar guy but appreciate the Verite. :)
    The Verite is a very nice sounding headphone with an organic timbre but
    1, everyone keeps saying it needs a powerful tube amp (I only tried from TT2/MScaler)
    2, like any other dynamic headphone, it can't produce bass like planars (authority, extension, impact).

    I guess it mostly comes down to the music we listen the most.

    The Empyrean is my first headphone where I don't feel I had to make any compromise.
    Hoegaardener70 and Darthpool like this.
  12. tradyblix
    Something I’ve wondering about - Do you guys feel that using an adapter (like XLR > 1/4) is a bad idea and that you shouldnt use them, or that it doesnt have much impact ? Just thinking about the cable itself, not balanced vs unbalanced considerations....
  13. mixman
    1) Nah, the Verite doesn't have to have an OTL amp, but may sound better with one. Tried it with the THX, LP, RME and IFI Black label. Sounded fine, but will never the bass of the Empy's
    2) True, but I believe has better bass texture, just cannot do the same bass impact, so take your pick
    3) I will add a third point. The Verite is a lot more tuneable. Zach has many more pad choices available to tune you HP's even according to what you listen to that day. Unfortunately Meze is not utilizing their tuning ability to the fullest. What their upcoming pad has been a year or so in the making? Maybe they should consult with Zach how he tunes his pads?
    Darthpool likes this.
  14. kumar402
    1/4 to XLR or XLR to 1/4
    XLR to 1/4 is bad idea for amplifier.
  15. Luke-
    Does Anyone use the original Hugo with the empys.

    I’m skint after purchasing the empys can’t quite stretch to the Hugo 2.

    Any feedback would be great.

    Looking to replace my WA7 +tube power supply
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2019
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