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ZMF AUTEUR - Should I Bite? Update: I chomped!

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Celty

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Thread Starter #21
This is up to you, but you should know that all colours are cool, as long as they're black! ;) So black. :D
LOL, well here is another pic of the cocobolo Auteur with brass, it's just too scrumptious for me not to stick with brass I think :)
 

Gabs

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#22
Would you please be able to post your review here ?
:)
(I wanted to recommend to you the Elex more regarding performance/price ratio)
 
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Celty

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Thread Starter #23
Would you please be able to post your review here ?
:)
(I wanted to recommend to you the Elex more regarding performance/price ratio)
Sure, though it will probably be awhile, I think, before I receive it. I just ordered it and the ZMF's are not quick to delivery given the handcrafted nature.
 
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Celty

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Thread Starter #24
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Celty

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Thread Starter #25
I was getting a bad case of anticipation anxiety on my Auteur order (Dec. 4th). ZMF had sent a link to a spreadsheet showing my order and the other "November" orders. Today I emailed to inquire if they had a general idea of an ETA. I was expecting perhaps another month or so given the holiday season. The owner responded immediately:
"We actually just finished your set and it's in QC - it'll be out this week.

Zach Mehrbach
Owner, ZMFheadphones.com"


Sheesh, I was surprised! First on the great news that they will be coming so soon, and second that the owner, Zach, responded himself and within literally less than 10 minutes. That is impressive customer support.

I responded, and also described my setup on the electronics side that I plan to drive them with, understanding that tube amps are often suggested for ZMF's. Again, he responded right away:
"Yeah that amp/combo should be nice - tubes and especially OTL will give you a different flavor, but not necessarily better or worse.

Excited to get them out to you!

Zach Mehrbach
Owner, ZMFheadphones.com"
 

Veri

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#27
Sheesh, I was surprised! First on the great news that they will be coming so soon, and second that the owner, Zach, responded himself and within literally less than 10 minutes. That is impressive customer support.
I believe Zach does most of the communication actually. Makes sense for smaller brands to give priority to customer support :)
 

Gabs

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#28
I believe Zach does most of the communication actually. Makes sense for smaller brands to give priority to customer support :)
I did not have the same quality support from MrSpeakers, at all...
No answer to 2 differents emails at different times.
Inverted wiring in the Aeon, that I had to send back. Fortunately I did not have to pay (except to send from France to US) but on the bill there was a 30$ for the "repair".
 
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Thread Starter #29
Update: I got my Auteur yesterday! Boy are they beautiful, I have been using them ever since, but it will be awhile before the recommended burn-in period is complete. Normally I have not given much weight to burn-in, but given that ZMF says:

"We highly recommend burn in for any ZMF headphone. Typically our headphones burn in with music at a medium to loud volume level (85 - 95 dB) for 200 hours. Pink noise, white noise or tones work as well."

I give a lot more credence to this as Zach designs and builds these headphones and knows them inside and out.

That said, all I can say is they already sound fantastic. I won't give a detailed account yet, but the things that immediately struck me are the the way that the Auteur combines seeming contradictory elements. They are highly detailed and resolving, but also smooth and not harsh or shouty. They sound like all parts of the audible spectrum are represented and present simultaneously - everything seems to have it's own place without sacrificing one thing for another. They have a sound that is very "realistic". I love my HD6XX's but they just are not at the same level. For instance, bass notes whether string or percussion are there with the HDXX's but with the the Auteur those notes have the texture of the original instrument that the HDXX's just do not reproduce.

Anyway, I am impressed.
Auteur3.jpg

Auteur10.jpg

My pics are crummy and don't really show what they look like. The construction quality is excellent. Somehow even though they are larger and heavier than my other headphones, in use they are extremely comfortable.
 
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#30
I would not trust any of the usual Youtube reviewers. I'm not saying they are being dishonest on purpose but a few points to keep in mind.

I don't have references for my statements so you'll have to search for the info yourself. If that means you ignore everything I say that's fine too ;)

1. The geometry of ear canals vary widely person to person. Somewhere I read this makes a 10 to 20 db difference in areas such as treble perception. So one person's ''bright'' is another person's ''neutral''

2. Are these guys half deaf from loud or constant exposure to music? We have no clue of their hearing is good enough to be an audio equipment reviewer.

3. Do they even know what neutral sounds like? How much time have they spent in perfectly treated rooms listening to TOTL studio monitors?

What's their reference for what a recording should sound like? Using live music as a reference does not cut it as it varies from venue to venue and where one sits and in my experience most big name band concerts I've been to sound like shit. They sacrifice musicality for the sake of volume.

4. I would maybe trust experienced mastering engineers like Bob Katz with a $100,000 home speaker system in a dedicated listening room using reference recordings he mastered himself.

Zeos with his anime soundtracks? Not so much. (Have nothing personal against the guy)
I don't think a lot of them have a real clue what they say in there videos or text impressions. I've seen some try to argue quite rudely how something like a CA andro or something V/U or +6db bass is more netural than a HD600/ER4S is. Just like your first point says, It sums ups the few Grado ones i see/read where they can't grasp that why someone would enjoy a SR225e or a GS1000e over what they hype as the new king.
 
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Thread Starter #31
Oooo, my new Hart Cables for the Auteur are here. James (Hart Cables owner) emailed me a pic after he finished it. Of course they are not plugged into those Audeze cans.
Hart.png

This is a custom sleeve color I chose called Rust Diamonds (which I think look great with the ZMF Cocobolo), for both the headphone cable and the Multi-Kit 1. If you are not familiar with Hart, you buy a cable with the correct headphone connector for your headphones. You then choose the "interconnect" for whatever amp / DAP / Phone / etc. that you intend to plug your headphones in to. In my case I wanted the Multikit-1 which is the whole kitchen sink. It includes:
IC-1 3": 1/4" TRS
IC-2 3": 3.5mm TRS
IC-3 3": 4-pin XLR
IC-4 3": 2.5mm TRRS
IC-5 3": 3.5mm TRRS
IC-6 3": 4.4mm TRRRS
I'll probably be ordering a headphone cable for my HD6XX. The cool part of that is that I already have all the interconnects, so just will need the one cable.
 
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Thread Starter #32
I had meant to follow-up with a pic of the Hart cable plugged in to the Auteur and forgot until now now - here it is. I ordered the sleeve color to compliment the Auteur Cocobolo, and I think it turned out well..

Auteur with Hart.jpg
 
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