Audeze’s recent headphone release is a showstopper to say the least. Utilizing Audeze’s double magnet array, Audeze says these headphones are unlike any other they’ve made. But how do they actually sound and is their sound signature the right fit for you? Let’s take a closer look with this Audeze LCD-24 review!
Lively Limited Edition – Audeze LCD-24 Review
In the Box
-Premium silver-plated copper cable
-leather conditioning cream for earpads
-hard shell protective carrying box
Look and Feel
The Audeze LCD-24 has a mature and stoic look. Just like the LCD-MX4, the LCD-24 features matte black earcups and grills, with its newest headband design. Like the old headband design, this one features a leather strip and a carbon fiber frame. However, it also has a more ergonomic extender and yolk angle. The headphones feel strong and well made, with an all metal body and solid joints (adjustable with an allen key). Additionally, it has leather earpads which have an asymmetrical shape to head the headphones at an angle on the head.
Comfort and Fit
The Audeze LCD-24 was super comfortable on my head, especially compared to others in the LCD series. At 590 g, the lighter design was easier on the neck. Additionally, the headband reached all the way across the top of my head, helping it feel more balanced and supportive to the earcups. Additionally, it is flexible, and thus will work well for a wide variety of head shapes and sizes. The LCD-24 had a wonderful secure and comfortable clamping force and thick earpads to keep the cups from touching the ears.
The Audeze LCD-24 has Neodymium 50 planar magnetic drivers. Together with .5 micron diaphragms, the headphones include Fluxor double magnet arrays. They’re placed in an offset position from each other which helps improve airflow and transparency. Then finally, it all works together with Audeze’s Fazor elements which helps direct airflow further, and keeps phase coherence in line.
The Audeze LCD-24 comes with their premium silver-coated copper cable. This cable is worth $600 on its own! It is made of OCC copper and has four individually insulated conductors. Within these strands are particularly positioned crystals which help to optimize signal transmission. Together with a gauge of AWG 20, it has a low resistance.
The low frequencies of the Audeze LCD-24 has quickness and punch, with a subtle feeling of extension. A light boost around what sounded like 40 Hz provided sub energy and life, giving a deeper feeling to kick drums, sub synths, and basses.
For example, when I was listening to the song Cleva by Erykah Badu, the kick drum transients were super quick and punchy, providing incredibly groove along with the bass guitar. Additionally, the kick felt full, with a good sense of sub energy. As a result, it came through with a subtle, yet tight and precise feeling of extension.
The middle frequencies of the Audeze LCD-24 have weight, harmonic complexity, and presence. A boost in the low-mids around what sounded like 200 Hz provided a feeling of thickness and fullness to basses, electric guitars, pianos, organs, and strings. Additionally, this fullness combined with an even middle midrange provided harmonic complexity, revealing overtones in complex instruments, as well as room mics and reverbs and other time based effects. Interestingly, the quickness of transients in the mids provided wonderful separation between instruments. Additionally, a cut at the base of the high-mids around what sounded like 1-2 kHz created great separation between instruments with more middle midrange information and those with more high mid information like vocals, acoustic guitars, high strings, and horns.
For example, when I was listening to the song Thrash Unreal by Against Me!, the bass guitar felt full and had a wonderful sense of movement and groove. Additionally, during the first and second verse, the palm muted electric guitar has a lot of nice movement and clarity. Then when the pre chorus and chorus come in, they feel nice and big! They maintain clarity because of an even high-mid response, and the vocalist is able to sit on top in the mix level-wise.
The high frequencies of the Audeze LCD-24 are pretty sounding and have presence and extension. With a boost in the lower treble around what sounded like 6-7 kHz, vocals have articulation, drum attacks have snap, and horns, acoustic guitars, and string stabs have specificity and forwardness. Additionally, a cut around what sounded like 8 kHz and 10 kHz softens the level of the highs a bit generally speaking and creates separation between the lower treble and upper octave. However, life and beauty and charisma comes back with a boost around what sounded like 11-14 kHz. This boosted area provides lift and extension, as well as a sense of energy and separation.
For example, when I was listening to the song 1919 by Terri Lyne Carrington, the piano hammers had a clear sense of attack. Additionally, the snare brushes and cymbal hits had a good forwardness and clarity. I could hear the wood of the upright bass, and occasional string snaps and finger noise. However, most interestingly, the cymbals and their sustains had a beautiful, extended lift that gave them a real sense of life. It contributed greatly to the emotional impact of the song.
The soundstage of the Audeze LCD-24 benefits from its super active and quick transient response. In particular, this activity provides a lot of space and separation in the width of the left-to-right response. While the width doesn’t feel dramatically extended, it has specular specificity and clarity. By contrast, the sense of height does have a dramatic presentation due to both the high frequency lift and low frequency sub information. Lastly, because of the space around the transients and the full room mic and reverb sound, the depth has reach and has a good sense of control and nuance.
For example, when I was listening to the song Good Life by Sammy Rae, the reverb and room mics of the vocals, drums, and horns provided specificity to their placements in depth. I was especially impressed with how the horns were able to sit backward in space while maintaining all the details to keep provided a good emotional response. Next, the wide guitars had great separation, in addition to the specific left-to-right placement of the strings and horns. And while the didn’t seem so dramatic to shoot completely away from the head, relative to the solid phantom center of the vocals, bass and kick, they felt specific and under control. Lastly, the lows of the kick drum contrasted dramatically with the highs of the cymbals and vocals. In between, the horns and guitars were able to sit specifically in the middle by the ears and shoulders respectively in the vertical space.
Overall, the Audeze LCD-24 has a comfortable fit, a full and energetic midrange, and a beautiful extended high end. While its low end feels full and harmonically complex, it won’t be best for bass heads. Rather, it works well for those that like a nice thick and harmonically complex sound. It sounds gorgeous for jazz, rock, indie, and acoustic music.
The Audeze LCD-24 is available for the best price here:
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