ZMF Caldera - New Planar Magnetic from ZMF!
Sep 25, 2023 at 10:56 AM Post #5,206 of 6,638
Got my Red Mallee Caldera today and I felt completely in love with it. :heart_eyes: :heart_eyes: :heart_eyes: :heart_eyes: . Thanks a lot @zach915m. This is more than I expected!
Guys at SJY. You would need to born again to build a piece of art like this.

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I knew there had to be some more out there - very nice!
 
Sep 25, 2023 at 1:44 PM Post #5,207 of 6,638
I knew there had to be some more out there - very nice!
Yeah. Actually saw yours first while waiting for mine to come, and gave me some good hope.
 
Sep 25, 2023 at 10:11 PM Post #5,209 of 6,638
I also got the impression (and this is imho only!) that Zach prefers a focus on the beauty and craftsmanship of his headphones and only addressed this reluctantly.
I got the same impression. I suppose with success (and ZMF is having plenty of that from what I can tell) comes PITA stuff like this.

And may I say, reading the posts about this imitation-Caldera company is something I did reluctantly, too.

I'm here for the Caldera, not imitators. Had several wonderful & mind-blowing experiences with my Caldera just in the last week.
 
Sep 26, 2023 at 2:39 AM Post #5,210 of 6,638
I got the same impression. I suppose with success (and ZMF is having plenty of that from what I can tell) comes PITA stuff like this.

And may I say, reading the posts about this imitation-Caldera company is something I did reluctantly, too.

I'm here for the Caldera, not imitators. Had several wonderful & mind-blowing experiences with my Caldera just in the last week.
I'm regretting dropping the YouTube link in this forum! I didn't intend it to be disruptive. I genuinely just wanted to know how likeminded ZMF fans felt.

I definitely would rather focus on how amazing the Caldera is. I've never put a headphone on and been so instantly and magically wowed by it. It has been on my ears practically every day since the last CanJam SoCal. I'm listening to it late into the night tonight as usual. It's a real masterwork.
 
Sep 26, 2023 at 7:51 AM Post #5,211 of 6,638
I'm regretting dropping the YouTube link in this forum! I didn't intend it to be disruptive. I genuinely just wanted to know how likeminded ZMF fans felt.

I definitely would rather focus on how amazing the Caldera is. I've never put a headphone on and been so instantly and magically wowed by it. It has been on my ears practically every day since the last CanJam SoCal. I'm listening to it late into the night tonight as usual. It's a real masterwork.

I didnt talk to add more wood to the fire but...

When I saw Zeos uploaded the video my first thought was, "finally he is reviewing the Caldera", but then I noticed the quality of the stabilized and headband design and then I realize he was talking about other headphones.

I showed to my wife and I asked her what are these, and she answered, "oh, that is the Caldera", and after a while... "wait, thats not the Caldera, but is almost the same, they copied it, omg"

If you enter to their website they dont have even the specs of the headphones model in the product page (yes for the last model). Other thing is they are popin models from nowhere fastly because they dont need to think the design. Headphones made without love.
 
Sep 26, 2023 at 8:10 AM Post #5,212 of 6,638
I'll briefly address this to clarify my stance, but I'd rather not dwell on it. For my own well-being, it's crucial to focus on my work and stay excited about it, rather than letting negativity affect my mindset.

When I started my journey by modding Fostex t50 headphones, my vision was to create headphones with wooden enclosures that resembled vintage instruments, incorporating elements of vintage architectural metal accents. As ZMF grew, my mission was always to make headphones so uniquely "ZMF" that they didn't require logos or branding – the design itself would be instantly recognizable.

Recently, I've become aware of a company on AliExpress that appears to be producing chassis and cups very similar to what we do, and even copying them. While I’m flattered, I also can’t help but worry that all the work I’ve put in to be able to make these designs through our engineers, machinery, wood hunting and more has been reduced to a singular 2 dimensional thought, rather than a complex journey that took many many years, sacrifices that both Bevin and I have made through long days and nights.
I don’t know exactly what parts from Ali Express are being used by any particular business, but I know that this is playing a large role in this.

Modding and entrepreneurship are fantastic, and I support individuals forging their own path. I have great admiration for creators like Ryan of Modhouse. There's a fine line between "inspired by," "paying homage to," and "replicating," While I can't define this for each of us, we all recognize it when we see it.

Creating with a clear vision and respecting the boundary where inspiration becomes too close to the source is crucial. Regarding SJY, they reached out to me in 2020, stating that their design at the time resembled one of ZMFs and was asking if that was ok. I expressed that it’s be worth a conversation, and if the designs were close that we should make an agreement. Unfortunately, despite my attempts at further communication, SJY's headphones have continued to resemble ZMF's more and more since our initial communication.

I cherish this community and what fellow builders achieve, often starting as I did. I encourage collaboration rather than competition. Building a successful business is incredibly challenging, and I'm always willing to help in any way I can.

I’m so SO excited about I’m doing right now! A giant challenge has always been trying to find the time in the day to get everything done. I have so many talented people in our shop, measurement gear I never thought I’d have, CNC machines and wood tools that I never knew existed years ago, it’s just amazing and I’m so excited about it and to continue learning and working on headphones. Things are going to be really fun moving forward regardless of any of this, and I’m so thankful for that.
Well said!

Also, super excited for ZMF November! 😍😍
 
Sep 26, 2023 at 8:15 AM Post #5,213 of 6,638
I agree with all of this in terms of sentiment, but it’s not a clone. It’s an attempted copy. A clone is identical. There is no way this thing can even remotely touch the audio of the Caldera. And if you look at it closely, it can’t match the build quality either.
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Posted this finishing comparison in another thread, but here it is again for reference. It's not even close. In real life the orange peel on the clear is awful. Can you guess which is which? 😂
 
Sep 26, 2023 at 8:37 AM Post #5,214 of 6,638
Sep 26, 2023 at 9:55 AM Post #5,216 of 6,638
It’s like ZMF’s version of Christmas. They will release new limited woods, stabilized woods, and B stock woods for all models.

And you can get some amazing sale prices on them. It’s a good month 😉

I guess that would apply to the Atrium Closed as well then (Stabilized as well as B stock)? I was going to buy a pair in the next week or so.... sounds like it may be worth while holding off a little longer!!
 
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Sep 26, 2023 at 10:02 AM Post #5,217 of 6,638
I guess that would apply to the Atrium Closed as well then (Stabilized as well as B stock)? I was going to buy a pair in the next week or so.... sounds like it may be worth while holding off a little longer!!
If you want the opportunity to own a one off, unique wood option, then patience will serve you well.
 
Sep 26, 2023 at 10:10 AM Post #5,218 of 6,638
It’s not urgent so I think that’s what I’ll do then… cheers 👍🏻
 
Sep 26, 2023 at 11:44 AM Post #5,219 of 6,638
Sep 26, 2023 at 11:53 AM Post #5,220 of 6,638
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