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Focal Utopia headphones...with Beryllium driver

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I had mine replaced earlier this year and it was a pretty straightforward process with the local dealer handling everything. The headphone had to be shipped back to France for repair so it took a couple of weeks but I didn't have to pay for anything. 

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not going to create a new thread... figured i'd drop some simple thoughts on the Focal Elex that arrived last week. i decided to grab these after reading ample comparisons to Sennheiser and the notion

I could have said that just as easily as you did, and suspect that many other people feel the same way about it. It's like any hobby, I guess. There is that initial phase when you're all into it an

I'd suggest trying them on a Cmoy to see if a superior amplifier might help. 

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I follow the Utopia thread on the other site and the number of posts about driver failure are concerning me. I got a great deal on a new pair and was quite pleased, but now I'm worried that if the driver fails I'll have warranty troubles.
Has anyone had their Utopias fail recently?

I haven’t had any problems with mine.
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Bummer. No problems on mine so far (I've had it over half a year now), and no problems on my Clear either which I had since 2017 and which has been used daily. But I did have an Elex with a failure at the cable connector on the right earcup. I can't blame the headphones too much since there was a lot of strain being put on that connector and eventually it let go. I've gathered that it's a common weak point with them, so if you've got an Elex, don't yank on the cables!

Edited by catscratch
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  • 4 weeks later...

Just got my repaired Utopias back—both drivers were replaced and now they sound a bit different than they did before. Previously, they had a strange reverberation to the sound, which was especially noticeable in the bass. I've been in touch with the people I bought them from and apparently some recently manufactured Utopias were wired incorrectly, causing them to have the strange reverberation and making them more likely to fail. I thought that was just the way that Utopias sounded and I got used to it, but I definitely prefer them without that "feature".

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Also, I just looked in the discussion thread for the Massdrop x Focal Elex and I noticed that some people were complaining about driver failures. One of the employees posted this update recently:


We randomly pulled a sample unit from the latest batch from Focal and tested to make sure it falls within specifications.  First the headphone was tested to ensure both drivers were operational by using  a mixture of music and sine sweeps to test for any unnatural resonances in the drivers and the headphone frame.

This makes me think that some Elex headphones were also wired incorrectly, causing them to have the same reverberation that I was hearing with the Utopias.

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  • 3 months later...

Currently spending my evenings listening to the Elear. I like it quite a bit more than the Utopias I used to own. Wonderfully potent, rich, dynamic, textured sound and plenty fast/detailed. The Utopias were probably even more refined but less authentic sounding.

It does have some treble problems which the Sonarworks Plugin just does wonders with... and also helps with the last bit of bass extension. 

Having a blast with these cans, I regret not buying them years ago instead of the overpriced Utopias. 

Edited by Bjorn
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