Focal Clear

Discussion in 'Headphones' started by The Alchemist, Nov 15, 2017.

  1. SSL

    SSL Friend

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    I found the velours to be a bit too shelved off above the mids, a bit too weird/uneven, and that they killed a lot of the things that the Clear does well. I guess technically they are an improvement over stock because I found the natural sound of the Clear to be a bit painful at times. Like, headache inducing.

    They hybrid pads aren't perfect either, but they at least allow me to enjoy the technical merits of the Clear without fatigue. I can easily imagine someone disliking their sound as well, it's all subjective.

    The overall balance of the stock pads is still the best. I just wish Focal had smoothed out the few trouble spots.
     
  2. TheIceman93

    TheIceman93 El pato-zorro

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    Agree on the stock pads being headache-inducing at times. I think that's why I enjoyed the Velours. Right away, I noticed a slight reduction in technicalities but I also found myself relaxing more which lead to greater musical enjoyment. I will give the hybrids a try but I'm more worried that I will miss the comfort of the Velours which I rated above the stock pads.
     
  3. SSL

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    The velours are the most comfortable. Proper memory foam.
     
  4. TheIceman93

    TheIceman93 El pato-zorro

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    I find them to be noticeably more comfortable than the stock pads. I've adjusted to any tuning funkiness and as I get more experienced with EQ, I find that I can eliminate and serious FR issues that I'm experiencing. I really only got the Dekoni's because the replacement pads were $200 which seems like a huge rip-off to me. I wanted to keep the stock pads fresh in case I ever sell the headphones (which I tend to do, I have a bit of a flipping habit). I was expecting the sound to be worse but I was pleasantly surprised to find that I preferred the Velours in some ways. They just helped to soften the fatiguing sharpness and add a bit of warmth that I enjoy. I do appreciate that Dekoni makes high-quality pads that allow listeners to experience other sound signatures without buying more headphones.
     
  5. Alondite

    Alondite Acquaintance

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    If anyone is curious about how to clean the microfiber pads and keep them somewhat close to their original color/feel/smell, I use Sonax alcantara cleaner on mine and it works quite well.

    Apply and lightly brush with a soft toothbrush, vacuum with a small-nozzle attachment, let dry and repeat until you you're satisfied. My pads are a bit darker than they were new, closer to the shade on top of the headband, but they still look good and aren't turning yellow or brown or anything like that, which I've seen on quite a few pairs.
     
  6. gixxerwimp

    gixxerwimp Professional tricycle rider

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    Have you tried a bit of front foam? I find stock to be a bit too bright and incisive. I posted about it in one of the Clear threads before*. Elex pads also take the edge off a bit, in addition to not becoming grimy.

    *Edit: it's actually @Hands mod for Elex/Elear.
     
  7. SSL

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    Didn't need to, since the pad swap resolved the issues I was having. The main sticking point was really the 1-2kHz bump, which I just needed to be gone, period. And now it is, so I can't complain.
     
  8. redrich2000

    redrich2000 Facebook Friend

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    Had anyone here washed their pads? I got a set of these recently and the seller sprayed some kind of scented fabric deodoriser or something on them and they reek of it.

    I saw folks on reddit saying they washed them in soapy water and it worked well. Anyone tried that?
     
  9. gixxerwimp

    gixxerwimp Professional tricycle rider

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    I haven't, but I would think washing them with a mild soap (like one intended for hand washing delicate garments, or a pure soap like Savon de Marseille as recommended by Focal*), rinsing thoroughly, smooshing out all the water into a towel, then drying them in front of a fan would work. It's not like there's pixie dust or unicorn jizz soaked into them ... or is there o_O

    *We use this soap at home for bathing. It's very gentle.
     
  10. SSL

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    Well, a bit of an unexpected update. I'm back on the stock pads after getting a Gungnir Multibit. Turns out the listening discomfort I was getting with the Clears before was all due to my Bifrost 4490. Fatigue is gone, basically all the issues I had with the presentation of the headphone are resolved. It would still be nice if the 1-2kHz bump wasn't there, but I can live with it easily, now.
     
  11. crenca

    crenca Friend

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    I have mostly come to the conclusion that the cause of the majority of the perceptions of fatigue, "metallic timbre", and the like with Clear & Utopia (Elear is another matter) is the HP revealing the upstream gear.
     
  12. SSL

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    I would agree. I heard a metallic edge to the timbre before the DAC upgrade for sure. Afterwards, not really if at all.
     
  13. will_f

    will_f Friend

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    I’ve used the fenestrated sheepskin. They aren’t quite as clear as the stock pads but still impressively clear. They sound warmer and a little less gritty which, depending on your tastes and upstream equipment, you may prefer. For me, I find them good enough that I like both the stock pads and the fenestrated sheepskin.
     
  14. BrokeSkoolBoi

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  15. crenca

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  16. Jonny

    Jonny Rando

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    The price is for exactly one piece
    For 2 ears, you need invest the double price
     
  17. AdvanTech

    AdvanTech Friend

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    Yep. Focal timbre issues have been exaggerated through internet telephone.
     
  18. chakku

    chakku Friend

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    Was looking into picking up a pair of Clears and had the following come back from a store stock enquiry
    Bit spooked now, wasn't aware they had common issues? I've seen some posts about them clipping at higher volumes but I guess I've missed something.
     
  19. crenca

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    Not sure you missed anything. @netforce has explained that Focal are completely dependent upon their dealer network for everything, including all the annoying (legitimate or not) warranty work. Maybe this particular dealer just did not want to do it anymore, and would say the same thing about other brands if they had to do the same...
     
  20. chakku

    chakku Friend

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    That could be the case indeed, a response from another (ex) stockist suggests logistics were too much of a nightmare. May just be the way the first ones worded it but they must have experience a big load of warranty claims to say something like that.

     

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