I’ve listened to these new toys for some time now and can detect a subtle difference between them and thr Utopias, and that subtlety might not be evident on all systems. It could esily be masked by the DAC, cabling, …
The difference I can detect is in the sound stage. It is more open and involving with the Utopias. The only other difference I can detect is the Utopias are a bit more efficient.
So the poor audiophile has an unenviable headphone choice. Enjoy superb music reproduction and save several thousand dollars or be a fanatical audiophile nutter and go fot the “ultimate” regardless of what it does to the bank account. A few years ago I loved the beautiful music vis the Sennheiser HD800S headphohones but that from the Foal Clear Mgs is clearly far better. Yes the sound from the Utopias is marginally better but whether or not it is worth it is the burning question.
I Am not an headphone guy, I still prefer listening to speakers and also have the focal utopia headphones. I think the differences depend on the gear used. Focal more affordable offers have come a long way in archiving a great sound. The price of utopia is not justified, but there are great discounts sometimes that make them more appealing.
I would love to have on roon similar options for focal line of headphones as the ones available to audeze in roon dsp.
Interesting comment Ricardo. One reviewer declared the clear Mg headphones mimic the Audeze.
I purchsed the second pair of Utopias at less than half retail price, but that was a rare event. The first pair were also purchased used but needed repair after awhile. Focal took over 12 months to return them but at no charge. I suspect they were from an early batch which gave problems but they have been reliable for over 2 years so I’m happy.
Having owned the Utopias and still owning the 800S i would have a really difficult time stating which one’s are the best. They are very different though. As an audiophile and headphone “nutter” i quite enjoy most of my headphones, regardless of their price actually. One of my favorites of late are the Hifiman Sundara, but i might be a “planar guy”!
“A few years ago I loved the beautiful music vis the Sennheiser HD800S headphohones but that from the Foal Clear Mgs is clearly far better.”
Can someone tell me what the author is trying to say here?
He prefers the Focal Clears to the Sennheiser hd800
And I can echo that again. The Sennies are very nice and much more comfortable, but the Focals reveal nicer sounding music. And to these ears, the Clear Mgs found just as good as the Utopias.
I on the other hand much prefer the Sennheisers. That’s what keep different manufacturers in business
And of course also reflects differences in individual hearing, something not constant anyway as it can be affected by fatigue, stress etc. All of which makes a mockery of “Absolute Sound” as there is no such animal in this very subjective area of music appreciation.
Also the Sennheisers are more comfortable on my big head.
Got to say I’m a Focal guy😇
Have both and I do swap between them but I always find myself preferring the Focals.
That’s to be expected as we are all different peas in a darn big pod!