AT A GLANCE
Less than spacious imaging
Focal’s Clear headphones are admirably well-balanced performers with irreproachable build quality and a gorgeous look.
Is $1,499 a lot to pay for headphones? Well, how much is a lot? Only you can make the definitive decision about what is a good buy and what would be an undue burden on your checking account. Here’s how Focal thought through the problem. This formidable loudspeaker manufacturer gave its emergent headphone line its best shot in the Focal Utopia, a four-thousand-dollar product that we hailed with a five-star review. Its latest offering, the Focal Clear, borrows technology developed for the Utopia and cuts the price by more than half.
Move over Tidal. Qobuz (pronounced “ko-buzz”) is coming to the States this fall, armed with a 2-million-track arsenal of hi-res music and a web portal that makes Tidal’s slick homepage seem confined. We checked in with AV industry veteran David Solomon, newly appointed Chief High-Res Evangelist for Qobuz, to learn more about the music service and its unusual name.