Focal has unveiled a new set of beautiful flagship over-ears. This is not a drill, high-end headphones lovers. This is best over-ear headphones territory and then some.
The French audio specialist has been innovating in audio for more than 40 years and its top-tier Utopia range – spanning headphones and home hi-fi speakers to custom-install speaker designs and exceptional in-car audio solutions – is all designed and hand-crafted in Focal’s specialist headphone atelier in France.
Utopia are, quite frankly, the ultimate Focal headphones, pricier even than the company’s glorious Focal Stellia over-ears – and they’ve just had a major update.
What sonic upgrades can we expect this time around? Focal audio experts have explored all the ways they could improve performance this time around and, the brand tells us, they have emphatically delivered them.
Analysis: Focal’s naming is simple – Utopia means perfection
Don’t expect this flagship headphone re-release to be marked by a numbered iteration (this is the luxury sector and here, Focal’s product names don’t change or gain ‘2’ suffixes, they simply evolve beautifully) but do expect a slew of beautiful upgrades.
First off, there’s the new full-range, Beryllium, ‘M’-shaped speaker drivers and grilles. These are fully open-backed and run with no passive or active correction, from a remarkable 5Hz to over 50kHz. There’s also a new, more advanced voice coil design using a copper/aluminium alloy (which was previously aluminium only.)
Then, there’s a lighter design for greater listening comfort, which was achieved by using yokes forged from recycled carbon fibre. In fact, in what is nothing short of a design overhaul, the Utopia now clearly look every inch the flagship model of Focal’s headphone family, with their distinctive honeycomb styling – a feature which is not just about looking good; the honeycomb design promises a more open sound with greater driver movement.
Pricing? Yes: $4,999 / £4,699 / AU$6999 – we wrote it quickly so you’d barely notice.
How do they sound? Watch this space – we can barely believe it ourselves, but we may soon have the pleasure of testing them.
Want to buy a Focal over-ear product but need something a little less pricey? We hear you. See the company’s Celestee closed-back proposition, or the Focal Clear Mg. (Yes, but we did say ‘less pricey’, not ‘affordable’…)