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Meze Liric Review (Closed Back Headphone)

Rate this headphone:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 31 20.9%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 59 39.9%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 47 31.8%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 11 7.4%

  • Total voters
    148

Jimbob54

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Pardon, are you sure? Maybe on ASR
Don't go there, take it to one of the many threads complaining about Harman or amir's headphone reviews, it's all been said before.
 

solderdude

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Pardon, are you sure? Maybe on ASR

According to Harman research... yes. There is clear evidence for this.
One should realize the following:
SO tile.jpg

That may not be yours or someone else's guideline. Mine differs somewhat from Harman but I don't think it is a bad guideline.
It satisfies Amir and ASR is his website and he can make personal recommendations as he pleases. Regardless if one agrees or not.
 

Jimbob54

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Don't go there? Where?
Challenging the validity of Harman in a review thread. Surefire way to get a warning from the mods and referred to the relevant threads. Because you're no longer talking about THIS headphone but challenging the overall review methodology.
 

Giangi71

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According to Harman research... yes. There is clear evidence for this.
One should realize the following:
View attachment 176802
That may not be yours or someone else's guideline. Mine differs somewhat from Harman but I don't think it is a bad guideline.
It satisfies Amir and it is his websites and he can make personal recommendations as he pleases.
Personal recommendations only to whom follows the Harman target. Ok, it's clear. But I'm not sure that the majority follows the Harman target
 

solderdude

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Last edited:

Giangi71

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Challenging the validity of Harman in a review thread. Surefire way to get a warning from the mods and referred to the relevant threads. Because you're no longer talking about THIS headphone but challenging the overall review methodology.
I have THIS headphone. Ahhh, what a fear! So one can't have their say on ASR? Can't you ask questions? Can't you ask for clarification? Is it only the prerogative of certain people? I did not get this
 

solderdude

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You can say you like it. Even without EQ.
Nobody will shoot you.
You can even review it and tell us what you like about it.
One can ask questions as well but there is no guarantee you will like the answers as much as your Liric.
 
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I have THIS headphone. Ahhh, what a fear! So one can't have their say on ASR? Can't you ask questions? Can't you ask for clarification? Is it only the prerogative of certain people? I did not get this
You should post questions in the relevant threads. There are separate threads that have the topic of methodology and validity of the Harman target. If you have issues with the Harman target you should go and post there.
 

Jimbob54

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I have THIS headphone. Ahhh, what a fear! So one can't have their say on ASR? Can't you ask questions? Can't you ask for clarification? Is it only the prerogative of certain people? I did not get this
And yet not one of your posts in this thread have been about THESE headphones but have been about the review process and format. I'm trying to help you, as are others, but you seem to want to debate the process. And as I said, that is not desirable in a specific review thread and against the wishes of the bossman . I advise you take up the case in the master complaints about hp measurements thread Amir set up. Or read it and the ones questioning Harman and see if it answers your questions.
 

Giangi71

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You can say you like it. Even without EQ.
Nobody will shoot you.
You can even review it and tell us what you like about it.
One can ask questions as well but there is no guarantee you will like the answers as much as your Liric.
Ah, that's for sure. And this is a smart answer
 

Merkurio

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Personal recommendations only to whom follows the Harman target. Ok, it's clear. But I'm not sure that the majority follows the Harman target

Almost every subjectively high-praised headphone adheres (to a certain extent) to the Harman target, which proves the point that it is an excellent starting point.

Harman target is just a way to describe a neutral FR with natural pinna gain compensation and some sub-bass boost added, which also acoustically correlates on how we perceive the volume of bass frequencies (yes, lower than mid-high frequencies). It's not a very specific magic sauce or someone's crazy recipe, and it has already been said that there is a margin of personal preference within the target itself.

I don't know why people get so salty when someone talks about Harman target being a good reference target, when they probably have (and like) headphones that follow the Harman target guidelines to some degree.
 

NHL99

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it's completely clear what it takes to get a favourable review. The manufacturer can perform the testing and make adjustments before start of production. It's that simple.
 

Rottmannash

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SpeleoFool

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Thank you for the review, but for 2K$ the sound should be great without any EQ applied.
Mine does, lol.

I don't mean to single you out with my response; I'm just a little surprised to find so much negative criticism in this thread, and claims of poor performance. I wonder how many of the forum critics or poll voters here have even heard LIRIC? Sure doesn't match my experience.

In any case, I was a super-early adopter, having happened upon LIRIC at Capital Audiofest. It's really hard to find good closed-backs, but LIRIC impressed immediately. When I found out it was $2k, I bought it on the spot.

I auditioned against R10P and Stealth, and I own several good closed backs including ZMF Verite Closed, Focal Stellia, etc. I like LIRIC better than Stealth, which I've heard a couple times now. For whatever reason, Stealth sounds "correct but lifeless" to me. It was pretty good on AmpsAndSound Nautilus, but that amp made everything sound good. At CAF I heard Stealth on GSX MkII, I believe, and a RAAL amp. R10P sounded boomy and unimpressive (was quite disappointed, to be honest). Stealth is at least a good headphone--it just doesn't justify its asking price for me.

I disagree that LIRIC needs EQ to sound great. There was no EQ when I auditioned it, and since owning it I have run it off of everything from an XBox controller (it's passable this way for gaming--gets just loud enough and still sounds quite good) to my current desktop reference, Ferrum Hypsos + Oor, where it sounds magnificent. It plays well with tubes (ZMF Pendant), and even replaced Arya as my favorite headphone with which to ruin the uninitiated on portable chains (not pictured: Astell & Kern SP1000 + Amp). The manager at my local Best Buy was sure impressed. :p

20211123_141614.jpg


So what can be suck-outs to sound engineers or people that prefer 'flat' can be a blessing and preferred tonality to those that look for said tonality and rather have that than 'sterile' or 'cold/lifeless/flat' sound.
Thanks for this! I don't think subjective preferences should be ignored or dismissed, which is why I disagree with the notion of having one "ideal target" for all headphones. In fact, my listening experiences are all the richer for companies innovating and offering a variety of compelling "flavors" in their audio products.

As you've pointed out, different people use headphones in different ways--studio engineering is not the same as recreational consumption of music, competitive gaming, or commuting, all of which may come with their own demands or rebalancing of priorities.

One of the key things I've learned from diving down this rabbit hole over the past few years is that I don't have a single ideal or one favorite audio chain. Rather, I have several favorites and an ever-shifting set of preferences that vary with mood. Simply chasing the least-distorting / best-measuring gear was ultimately disappointing; I found a "culinary framework" works better for capturing how I actually enjoy and use personal audio products.

We all know that everyone enjoys different foods. It's not weird for people to have multiple favorites and dislikes. It's also normal to get bored eating the same meal every day regardless of how much you like it. Meanwhile, excellent execution can dramatically elevate a simple dish to a memorable experience.

All of these hold true for me with headphones. I have multiple favorite listening chains:

One favorite is Hifiman Susvara on a very clean and resolving solid state chain (I have Holo May feeding a spare 2 channels of my McIntosh 8207 surround amp). I find that gives me the most believable timbre and spatial reproduction of any personal audio I've heard so far; it's particularly satisfying with music containing natural instruments, such as orchestra / score music, live ensembles, etc.

Another favorite is ZMF Verite Closed on tubes. That's a wholly different experience that I find super musical and compelling, because Zach Merbach is a Master Chef, lol. Mids are super lush and engaging, and staging is big and enveloping. It's just a lovely delivery that works well across a variety of genres. This is a chain I reach for when I want to relax and just get lost in music.

MEST MkII CIEMs are yet another favorite, because the bone conduction driver can change the listening experience drastically compared to everything else I've heard. MEST bass feels subwoofer-like in that quantity can push the bounds of overwhelming, but the bass never intrudes on the rest of the track. At all. It's a unique and somewhat peculiar effect that is every bit as compelling as my other summit chains. I especially like MEST with high-energy electronic music, but it pairs well with everything I've thrown at it.

--

Anyway, point made. I do appreciate the FR graphs referencing Harman to show how closely a given headphone might align, but I have found these graphs only mildly useful for correlating with listening experience or forming expectations for gear I haven't heard. It's good information, but not enough for me to draw conclusions without listening.
 

Urbs

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Has there been a determination that any of the responses from these headphones correct? Answer is no. Every company seems to be making up its own response. That is certainly not good for us as consumers and those that use them to produce music.

At this point, we need standardization to one target and then we can change it here and there to taste. After testing nearly 100 headphones now, for me the Harman curve is very close to ideal. Deviating from it screws up spatial cues, impact of sub-bass, brightness, etc.

There is a ton of room for differentiation between headphone companies from price to feel and looks. They don't need to produce wildly different frequency responses. Speakers have for the most part moved to flat on-axis response. Same needs to happen here as far as target.
Couldn't disagree more. Variety is the spice of life and consumers don't want the robots making decisions for us. Some like it warm, some like it cold. Some like it thick, some like it thin. Some like bass, some like treble, some like mids. Some like super wide soundstage, some like more intimate soundstage. Point is, I think it's best to let the consumers choose with their wallets, not the philosophically "pure" audiophile nerds making decisions for everyone. Stick to more reviews and less evangelism. I'd much prefer headphone manufacturers making what they think is the best sounding product and their "house" sound, especially when people like you can just use eq anyway, so stop complaining so much.
 

Firefly00

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Couldn't disagree more. Variety is the spice of life and consumers don't want the robots making decisions for us. Some like it warm, some like it cold. Some like it thick, some like it thin. Some like bass, some like treble, some like mids. Some like super wide soundstage, some like more intimate soundstage. Point is, I think it's best to let the consumers choose with their wallets, not the philosophically "pure" audiophile nerds making decisions for everyone. Stick to more reviews and less evangelism. I'd much prefer headphone manufacturers making what they think is the best sounding product and their "house" sound, especially when people like you can just use eq anyway, so stop complaining so much.
Harman is backed by research into what *most** people like. If a company cuts corners in the tuning, what else are they cutting corners in?

Don’t get me wrong, house sound can absolutely be preferred by some people, but the harman target is objectively better for the majority of the population.
 
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