For budding audiophiles, Audeze is a well-known headphone manufacturer. For those unaware of the brand, the company made a name for itself with the original LCD-2; they’re somewhat a legacy for Planar Magnetic Headphones. First released in 2009, the open-back headphones grew a strong cult for its warm, smooth sound signature and of course, its distinctive look.
Fast forward to 2018 and we’ve got ourselves the brand-new Audeze LCD-2C (aka Classic). These headphones encapsulate the original LCD-2, but are subtly different in a few areas.
For starters, headphones aren’t elegantly finished in a wooden enclosure. This never impacted the sound, unlike the Denon AH-Dxxxx range, but aesthetically it’s a night and day difference. I know which one I’d pick and that’d be the wooden enclosure. Apart from its finish, there’s also a difference in terms of the accessories you get. Previously you’d get a travel case with your LCD-2 purchase, but not with the LCD-2C – you only get the headphones.
Finally, and arguably the most important change to note, is the removal of the Fazor elements on the new headphone. This technology was developed by Audeze to make their LCD range sound more neutral and less bass heavy.
Pros:Overall sound quality (exceptionally good soundstage), build quality, removable cable Cons: Poor comfort due to a relatively heavy design, no accessories, poor isolation, dipped upper mids
Packaging & Accessories: 0/10 Build Quality: 10/10 Design & Look: 8/10 Isolation: 5/10 Comfort: 6.5/10 Sound Quality: 9/10 Value: 8/10 – based on £600 price tag My final Rating: 8.5/10
Review Date: May 2018 Review Price: £600
Here’s my video review of the headphones:
My full written review continues below, alternatively, click to view it.
UPDATE:Since writing my review, the B200 have dropped in price, to £95 and now have a removable cable – incredible!
I’ve known Brainwavz for their affordable earphones and headphones – when I saw the company was offering the £150 Brainwavz B200 earphones I was immediately intrigued. This is the most expensive item on the product list, and with dual balanced armature drivers found within it, I was curious to see if the earphones were good value for money or if they’d drown under its competitors.
The B200’s can be found for £150 on Amazon UK and $170 on Amazon USA at the time of writing, they are in fact cheaper – at £95 and $120 respectively. I’ll be reviewing them at their original price.
SoundMAGIC are back at it again with the E10s. But, this time, the company takes one of the best budget earphones and adds Bluetooth, creating the E10BT. Using the E10’s as my throw-away earphones, I was intrigued to see how the E10BT would compare in both value and sound quality.
The W80’s are the Westone’s flagship product, with eight drivers lobbed inside each ear, the American company had the intention of creating the ultimate universal earphone on the market. Having heard a multitude of different earphones, I was intrigued to see if and how the Westone W80’s would compare to some of the best universal and even custom-made IEMs on the market. Westone always has a special place in my heart, as it was due of the Westone 2 earphones that I got into in-ears.
The Westone W80’s aren’t cheap, at an eye-watering £1,200 price tag, the earphones are extremely expensive to say the least. They can also be found for $1,500 in the US. Everything in this review will take into account the price, as for the same money you could build a high-end gaming PC, buy several high-end earphones or even buy a car.
Pros:Packaging and accessories, comfort, build quality Cons: Price and value, overall sound quality, microphonics
Packaging & Accessories: 10/10 Build Quality: 9/10 Design & Look: 8.5/10 Microphonics (higher ratings means lower cable noise):7/10 – judged with ALO cable Isolation: 8.5/10 Comfort: 9.5/10 Sound Quality: 8/10 Value: 3/10 – based on £1,200 price tag My final Rating: 6/10
Review Date: April 2017 Review Price: £1,200
Here is a video review of the earphones:
Read on for an in-depth review of the Westone W80 earphones.