It’s been a while since Sivga released a new open-back headphone, but their follow-up to the Pheonix is finally here. The LUAN is a new affordable open-back headphone with a dynamic driver. Most of Sivga’s recent output, aside from the SV023, has been closed-back headphones like the Oriole and SV021, The Pheonix was a solid hit here on MajorHiFi, but can the LUAN top it?
What You Get
- LUAN headphones
- Leather carrying case
- Detachable 3.5mm cable
- Quarter-inch adapter
Look & Feel
Sivga has shown how skilled they are in designing wooden headphones, and the LUAN might be their cleanest effort yet. Everything about the LUAN’s construction reminds me of a more refined version of the Pheonix. The frame here is a lot more sturdy, thanks to CNC carved yokes and headband. The wooden housing also feels a lot more polished this time around. Altogether, it makes for a fantastic design for a headphone in this price range. The ear pads also add a lot to the makeup of the LUAN. These giant, soft, velvet ear pads make the LUAN very comfortable. I wore them for hours without feeling any fatigue thanks to the open isolation.
The LUAN has a 50mm dynamic driver, with a unique diaphragm. Its edges are coated in nickel, enhancing elasticity and rigidness. For its dome, the LUAN uses macromolecule organic carbon fiber materials that can absorb and suppress excessive vibrations.
I haven’t heard a pair of headphones from Sivga yet that hasn’t impressed me with its soundstage. With the LUAN being an open-back headphone, I had high expectations, and they were mostly met. The LUAN does everything I expect a Sivga headphone to do. It has a wide soundstage that wraps around you and has spatial imaging that feels precise and well-organized. You can listen to the layers propagating back and forth, which adds great depth.
The individual elements appear very large and take up a ton of space. While separation is good through the LUAN, the size of the instruments doesn’t leave a ton of space in between each performance. Great height and more forward-leaning sound elements like vocals and horns are expanded upon. This is a pretty clear bubble of sound that has sounds emanating from specific positions, which is great for focusing in on solo performances. However, Hearing sounds in proper distancing is rare due to the less strict separation ability.
Sivga headphones like to have bass prominence, and the LUAN is no different. It’s a type of provenance that gives the sound signature the most coloration but still tries to keep things controlled. The LUAN has a smooth, grooving bass that takes its time to showcase its fullness. You get some hard hits here and there, but the bass here is really about lift and vibration. It has depth, but the LUAN has more of a surface-level presentation than you might expect. While sub-bass frequencies have fine representation, the most engrossing part of the lows is their surface area warmth. It’s a lot more significant of a tone and occupies a lot of space in the lows.
While there are a few notches here and there, these mids retain consistent clarity. Most of the frequency response is laid back, but the LUAN gives certain instruments a more solid identity where they stand in the mix. The upper mids have a slight accent to them, and this can make specific note hits feel more powerful. Otherwise, the LUAN keeps the midrange at a natural timbre, with a clear definition but not as much drive. Vocals are given a ton of command though, and that helps showcase their overall detail.
A lot of detail is expressed in the highs without venturing too far into bright territory. There are some bright textures here, but they don’t pierce through the sound signature too harshly. Overall, the highs have a reserved glimmer, and feature some great height to the mix that really fills out the soundstage.
This is a fine addition to Sivga’s library of open-back wooden headphones. For $299, the LUAN offers an immensely satisfying sound signature that brings all the joys of a bass-focused profile. The build and comfort quality is also massively improved from other models they’ve put out in the past, more than some other headphones offer for a higher price. If you’re not looking for open-back headphones for reference, and just want to casually enjoy your music for less than $500, then the Sivga LUAN could be what you need.
The Sivga LUAN is available for pre-order at Audio46.