"The Best-Sounding Full-Size Headphone on the Planet"
The Audeze LCD-2 is a state-of-the-art planar magnetic headphone with every component engineered with one goal in mind: to recreate sound precisely as the artist intended. The LCD-2 uses Audeze's proprietary thin-film diaphragm housed between a push-pull magnetic structure producing incredibly accurate and detailed sound.
In his November 10, 2010 review for CNET.com, Steve Guttenberg raves, "The Audeze LCD-2 may be the best-sounding full-size headphone on the planet… This headphone somehow produces extraordinary clarity, openness, and articulation, but without exaggerated detail or annoyingly overdone treble. The Audeze LCD-2 is a game changer…"
"Hail the New King!"
"Hail the new king!" proclaims Srajan Ebaen at 6moons.com. "It's so shocking that newcomer Audeze could morph so quickly from DIY LCD-1 to bona fide production item with the LCD-2 and segue straight into the top echelon where they now are an uncompromised alternative to Sennheiser and Beyer-dynamic."
"I'll stick my neck out and say that these are the most enjoyable headphones I've ever experienced. I have no complaints and I will be using them as my main reference standard against which I'll judge all other headphones," reports Jeff Dorgay in his TONEAudio review for December 2010.
Luxurious Ear Cups and Ear Pads
The ear cups of the LCD-2 are made from either environmentally sustainable Caribbean Rosewood or Shedua wood. The sloped ear pads are dual purpose and are designed for aesthetics and functionality.
The soft, lambskin leather ear pads or earpads with a non-leather 'vegan' cover have been handcrafted to look great and offer the right amount of firmness for a comfortable fit that provides the proper amount of isolation and seal. Additionally, the sloped design provides a more stable fit while positioning the driver more directly towards your ear to ensure correct imaging and sound signature.
The LCD-2 comes with an ADZ6SE single-ended 1/4” TRS to 2x4-pin mini XLR cable with 1/4" to 1/8" adapter. It also includes a wood care kit, 'Ruggedized travel case,' a personalized frequency response graph, and 3-year warranty documents from Audeze.
Audeze Planar Magnetic Transducer Technology
Planar magnetic speaker technology is a dramatic departure from traditional dynamic speakers. The unique design and functionality of planar magnetic transducers (or drivers) overcome many limitations inherent in cone drivers.
Planar magnetic transducers typically consist of two main components: a diaphragm with circuit and magnet arrays. The 'planar' in planar magnetics refers to the magnetic field that's distributed in the same plane (parallel) to the diaphragm. Planar magnetic diaphragms are thin and lightweight compared to much heavier moving-coil or dome diaphragms found in 'dynamic' drivers. This thin diaphragm is suspended in the magnetic fields created by the magnetic arrays.
Unlike a dynamic driver with a cone or dome attached to a voice coil, a planar magnetic diaphragm has a printed circuit spread across the surface of a thin-film substrate. When the circuit is energized with an audio signal, it interacts with the magnetic field and produces an electromagnetic force that moves the diaphragm back and forth creating sound.
Audeze employs a number of proprietary techniques that improve upon basic planar magnetic design, including the integration of unique, ultra-thin diaphragms and stronger and more optimized magnetic fields and circuit patterns. Audeze's goal is to bring the best in planar magnetic design and continuing to improve the personal audio experience.
Planar Transducer Advantages
Planar magnetic transducers offer numerous benefits compared to dynamic drivers, beginning with enhanced responsiveness. Since the force created by the magnetic field is distributed across most of the diaphragm surface, the planar magnetic diaphragm moves faster and with far greater accuracy to the input signal.
The magnetic force that drives the lightweight diaphragm delivers rapid acceleration thus achieving a wide frequency response, low distortion and excellent sound quality.
Planar magnetic transducers also offer added durability compared to conventional dynamic drivers. Because the circuit pattern is spread flat across the diaphragm surface, it can dissipate the heat generated by the current passing through it more efficiently. Additionally, planar magnetic transducers have few moving parts and can maintain performance without any sonic degradation. Dynamic drivers continuously degrade in performance over their life due to a multitude of moving parts and use of glue joints.
Amplifier friendliness is another attribute. The circuits found in planar magnetic diaphragms present an almost purely resistive load to amplifiers, making the transducers easy to drive. The impedance over the entire frequency range is completely flat vs. dynamic speaker, which could have variances in impedance values over the frequency range.
"The Audeze LCD-2 may be the best-sounding full-size headphone on the planet…"
"I've never heard anything quite like the Audeze LCD-2 before. This headphone somehow produces extraordinary clarity, openness, and articulation, but without exaggerated detail or annoyingly overdone treble. The Audeze LCD-2 is a game changer; no wonder it's getting raves from the online high-end mavens at Head-Fi. Audeze's co-founders, Alex Rosson and Sankar Thiagasamudram, are onto something."
- Steve Guttenberg, CNET.com, November 10, 2010
"Hail the new king!"
"It's so shocking that newcomer Audeze could morph so quickly from DIY LCD-1 to bona fide production item with the LCD-2 and segue straight into the top echelon where they now are an uncompromised alternative to Sennheiser and beyer-dynamic."
- Srajan Ebaen, 6moons.com
"You need these phones."
"Everyone who took the Audeze LCD-2 phones for a test drive arrived at the same conclusion – need was always the word used in the conversation. While headphone users are very opinionated and easily polarized, I'll stick my neck out and say that these are the most enjoyable headphones I've ever experienced. I have no complaints and I will be using them as my main reference standard against which I'll judge all other headphones."
- Jeff Dorgay, TONEAudio, December 2010