Audeze LCD-X Open-Back Planar Headphone - Official Thread

audeze
planar

#1
Specifications (from Audeze)
Style Over-ear, open-back
Transducer type Planar magnetic
Magnetic structure Proprietary magnet array
Phase management FAZOR
Magnet type Neodymium N50
Diaphragm type Ultra-thin
Transducer size 106 mm
Maximum power handling 5W RMS
Maximum SPL >130dB
Frequency response 10Hz – 50kHz
THD <0.1% @ 100dB
Impedance 20 ohms
Sensitivity 103dB/1mw (at Drum Reference Point)
Minimum power requirement >100mW
Recommended power level >250mW

The LCD-X are an over-ear, open-back, planar-magnetic headphone, and the first of the “efficient enough to drive from a portable device” can of their type.

Quoting Audeze:

"The Audeze LCD-X offers an unhyped, accurate tonal presentation that makes them an ideal choice for either listening rooms or for pro audio applications. The LCD-X will also work just as dandy for portable listening uses due to its standout efficiency.

Expressly designed for both portable audiophile listening and studio reference work, not many headphones of this caliber are as amazingly efficient as the Audeze LCD-X. Even more impressively, the LCD-X basically delivers nearly all of the sound quality of the superlative Audeze LCD-3 model at a slightly lower price."

This is the official spot to discuss them.


#2

A place to discuss the Audeze-X (gon give it to ya) lol.

¡¡¡¡Reminder this is a first impression with only a couple of hours of use!!!

First impression right out of the box no break in was good, I definetly need to warm up to these. They are not bass cannons like I was expecting. @taronlissimore said it best to me that they are more akin to the Focal Clears.

So far can’t complain about the sound. But build is throwing me off, it feels clunky and unfinished, especially the headphone adjustments feel rough, and while listening they will slip out of the adjustment I set for them (I’ll have to pull out my allen wrenches and see what can be done about this, as the worst perpetrator [left cup] seems to be not tightened as much as the right cup.) Now once all settled in and listening to music, i thought the weight would be a problem…well not so much, the headband does a great job of spreading the weight across the top of my head. If I were to get these on my own I might swap the pads out though for some ZMF Vegan pads, or another ZMF pad.

Oh on the topic of headbands, this one does the job, but it doesn’t feel as quality as I was expecting ( I also could have over hyped myself for this headphone, and now I’m being over critical). Also a lot of these naggles are just that… nothing that actually detracts from the great sound… unless the cup falls and the metal housing begins reverberating because of it, but that will be fixed with a quick tightening of the bolt.

Back to the sound, these things are neutral “beasts” and I get why they are marketed to creators, they hide nothing and just present what they are given. As @pwjazz mentioned in one of his posts/reviews (can’t remember which) he talks about TOTL headphones having one trick up their sleeve…well this one is that it has no tricks other than getting out of the way. Which can be off putting if you are expecting to hear a nuance or trick.

Back to build quality for a bit. I think that a lot of my issues will be resolved with time and physical break in of the new materials, and the more I think about the intended use case for these the more I appreciate the spartan styling, these are to be used not admired! I can get behind this…build a tank that sounds like a butterfly, and moves through music like a hummingbird with accuracy and impeccable timing (seriously go watch some hummingbird videos, they are amazing creatures!) lol.

¡¡¡¡Reminder this is a first impression with only a couple of hours of use!!!

Sorry for potato quality phone pics, but just adding this in before I take off for a couple of days on a quick getaway vaca with the fam-damily. I am looking forward to getting these wrapped around my ears again…sneakily good lil minxes that they are!

image


#3

Created an official thread for these and moved your original topic under it.

Do not do this!

Audeze note this on the product page:

"Note: The tensioned set screws in the sides of the headband’s adjustment blocks are pre-set and glued in our factory, and are not adjustable. Do not attempt to adjust these screws, as damage may result that is not covered by warranty."

I had a similar issue with my LCD-4 and a quick call to Audeze had them sending me a replacement adjustment block.


#4

Last time I went camping in the Lincoln National Forest, I was regularly greeted by half a dozen hummingbirds hovering near my tent door in the mornings. They really are something.


#5

Oooh good looking out… I’ll contact Audeze about it, errr…I’ll message @taronlissimore about how to proceed actually. Like I said earlier it isn’t a deal breaker but can be annoying. It is a good thing it was late last night and I didn’t want to go downstairs to get my tools.

I can feel/see that the left cup bolt is sticking out further than the right. Maybe before I head out of town I’ll try and get a picture of it…no promises =(


#6

This seems to be common or perhaps the norm – my LCD-2Cs have exactly the same issue. The setting will randomly slip when sitting on their hanger or on my head. The sliders are tiny relative to the ear cups.

The weight of the LCD-2C doesn’t bother me much, but the size of the cushions and angle of rest does. When worn low they cause significant jaw pain. If I sell them, that would be a primary reason.

[DEEP THOUGHTS WARNING] My intuition is that back in the day Audeze tried to turn a technical limitation into a strength. They use pretty huge drivers and had to build headphones around them. So, instead of cutting corners elsewhere to save weight (e.g., HiFiMan), they went big in every way. This resulted in the SUV or 4x4 truck of headphones, and derived the look from Grado-like retro styling. Everything from the ear cups to the hefty cable screams “I’m Big, I’m Proud, I Won’t Apologize!”

I’m on the fence about keeping the LCD-2Cs now. They are fun when they don’t dislocate my jaw.


#7

The LCD-X is definitely one of the lighter headphones in Audeze’s lineup. Along with the MX4 and LCD-4z. When you get into the wood designs, that’s when the weight really kicks in. Their new headband suspension system definitely helps alleviate some of that weight though in comparison to the old headband.

For that full on bass, I would take a look at the LCD-3 or 4. Even that bass isn’t boomy like the Cascade though. It’s warm and gooey with a laidback punchiness if that makes any sense. The LCD-X is a lot like the Clear mixed with Audeze’s house sound.

For the headband adjustments, let me know if it persists and I can get another pair sent out.


#8

Nor are the LCD-2Cs bass cannons. Mid bass is solid, but deep bass falls in the middle to lower half of my headphone fleet.

Style shapes perception.


#9

After playing with it some more, and doing some research I don’t think it is a major issue at this point. More a quirk than a defect at this stage. I am getting one last session in before we take off for SoCal, and I really do enjoy the sound… I can’t wait to do some A/B testing with them, I’m thinking Focal Clear and HD800…I’ll put the features of the Phonitor XE to good use :wink:


#10

Those are the 3 that are the most purchased together from us with people choosing between them. It’s always interesting hearing the reasons why they decide to keep one. Really lets you know the kind of sound profile they prefer.

They were actually the one Audeze headphone that I expected to not like just from the impressions I read about them before I had the opportunity to use them a couple months ago. But I am glad I did get the chance to actually listen to them since it turned out I was completely wrong.

I still need to keep the 2 / 2C a listen though as those are the only ones from the LCD series that I have not listened to yet (aside from the XC).


#11

I think a slight problem I have currently is that I listen mostly with the Focal Elegia, and I’ve now accustomed my brain to it. Hopefully this weekend and next week week I’ll get some solid ear time with these to better acclimate and understand what they are doing.

As of right now it almost seems like they are just, getting out of the way of the music… pretty interesting listen. I enjoy it so far, and think I’ll like it more with time.


#12

Don’t forget to try the Audeze “Reveal” plug-in (EQ) or the equivalent Audeze DSP presets in Roon!


#13

That’s the great thing about the Community Preview Program. You get to try out gear that may not actually be to your taste and that is perfectly OK. Or try out gear that you think you will hate and actually end up enjoying!

I have experienced that issue in the past week as well. I have been using the Elegia pretty much exclusively aside from some office testing and we had an Andromeda come through the office again. I used it for a couple of days while commuting and I found myself wanting to go back to my Elegia each day. Part of it is definitely getting past that mental burn in bump.


#14

I’ll be rocking my Andromeda for the next couple days… hopefully that will help with the brain re-jigger!

Yeah, you gentlemen, are, beyond awesome, for creating this…and I concur completely on your thoughts on the Preview Program! I wouldn’t have advanced as far down this rabbit hole if it wasn’t for you guys and @Torq. Such a great opportunity and community to be a part of.


#15

I started with the old style LCD-X headband and changed to the suspension headband which I like far better. IMO, don’t expend the extra money for the $200 Carbon Fiber Suspension headband. It is only a tad lighter, and I didn’t notice the difference in weight (and returned it). The LCD-X are heavier than my other high end headphones, but are balanced in such a way that works fine for me.

I am using mine with a Cardas Cross Single ended headphone cable.


#16

So now that you have had some extra time with the LCD-X have your thoughts changed at all with them? Have you had the chance to try out the Audeze Reveal plug-in with them?


#17

I keep going back and forth with them and the Clears. I think that you had the feeling of them correct. They are very similar to the Clears, but I think that the Clears edge them out over all.

Great headphones, that are reference level, and I see who they are targeting, after listening to them more.

I’m going to try and put all my notes and thoughts together on them this weekend.

Plus I need to get some good pictures of them.

Quick summary thought, if I didn’t have Clears, I would say the LCD-X would be my go to headphones for majority of my listening.


#18

Ok, review/impression done, I just need to get some solid pictures, should be posting it here in the next couple of days.