Meze 99 Classics review

Meze Audio was founded in 2011 in Baia Mare, Romania. Surprisingly, in such a short period of time for companies the A segment, the developers managed to achieve incredible heights in combination of price and quality. Looking ahead, we note that competitors in this price range (309$ Meze Audio 99 Classic) are extremely difficult or impossible to find even 2020.

Accessories & Packaging

Meze 99 Classic delivered in a large box, made of thick and dense cardboard and a side magnetic lock for easy and quick opening, this gives the box an additional feeling of high qualities.

Inside the box is a hard EVA zippered carrying pouch, instructions and stickers. The case is made very securely and gives the impression of reliability. On top of the case – logo of the company Meze.


The manual contains only the necessary information: description of headset, control and frequency response graph.

Included accessories: Cable pouch, 6.3mm gold-plated jack, airplane jack adapter, two cables: 1.2m thread Kevlar OFC with Mic/remote and 3m thread Kevlar OFC. (Note: for test we using 99 Series Silver Plated upgrade cables).

Design

Antonio Meze, the founder of the company, is responsible for the design. 99 classic uses exclusively high quality materials, natural walnut wood and steel. Considering that the wood texture is individual, the manufacturer compares it with a fingerprint, then each model of the Mesa 99 classic is different from each other externally. The favourable ratio of aluminium to wood gives out a luxurious vibe. We can also note that in the hands of the headphones felt extremely nice, as a quality thing and made with love.

The headband consists of an external steel arc which is attached to the earcup, and an internal arc which is covered with a leather substitute and easily allows you to adjust the size of the headphones.

The earpads are medium-sized, and made of high-quality and pleasant to the touch leather substitute. In general, the assembly is of very high quality, this is due to the manual assembly of the model. This is fully consistent with the manufacturer’s concept – to make a work of art from headphones.

Comfort

Their headphones’ weight of 260g is pretty light for this type of product, and the wonderful design of the headband and earpads means these are among the most comfortable full-size headphones we’ve tried. We can note a high degree of convenience and ergonomics of this model. After listening for many hours, no any discomfort is observed. The design turned out really extremely convenient.

Sound

Most rivals, with closed-back designs, sound less lively and more shut-in. Equally, these same rivals offer smaller in the way of bass punch and authority.

Separately, want to highlight just the bass, it is natural. Its exactly the amount that should be, this is the rare case where the bass sounds organically throughout the general sound picture, it is assertive but not annoying, they want to enjoy and delve into all the subtleties of sound. The sound wave of a lower register makes the tremors very elastic, especially when playing multi-instrumental recordings with a live bass guitar. In general, in our opinion, these headphones are ideal for live instruments.

In the middle frequency register, you can see some blur, but the air feeling in this range continues to surprise. It is worth noting that after 2-3 days of warming up the headphones, string instruments acquire naturalness and lightness in the medium and high frequency range. At the same time, the bass changes its color somewhat, but remains equally bewitching and attractive.

Testing was carried out on headphone DAC suitable for this price range – Tempotec Sonata iDSD plus (dual ESS9601K chip) and Topping DX3 Pro (AK4493EQ chip). Both amplifiers open this model well, however, it’s worth connecting something cheaper or compromise and you immediately lose the atmosphere and air. Headphones continue to sound very balanced and whole even with cheaper sources, however more expensive models DAC give an adrenaline rush throughout the spectrum.

Meze 99 Series Silver Plated Custom made upgrade cables (for 99 CLASSICS & 99 NEO Model)

It is worth noting exactly how the cable affects the picture of sound in general. Here you must first definitely consider a quality source. Unlike the stock cable, when listening with the 99 Series Silver Plated upgrade cables, the overtone in the low range is immediately noticeable, side and third-party sounds appear when playing strings, which incredibly enlivens the overall picture.

Stock 99 classics cable

The bass guitar receives an additional light and pleasant metal sound of strings which gives life to the composition. In the middle of the spectrum appears crystallinity and range expansion. High frequencies cease to be deliberate as it is noticeable with the stock cable and become smooth and loud, while preserving the naturalness, which in general for this price headphone remains a difficulty even for many competitors today. Probably of the minuses, we can attribute only the small length (1.2m – for most users this will be quite enough) of the cable and relatively high cost of $119.

However, the shades that this cable can bring to the composition often cost much more, and this is the case. Highly recommend. Unpack and review 99 Series Silver Plated upgrade cables here.

Verdict

Considering the price of Meze 99 classic, you get fantastic detail resolution and articulate sound (we recommend warm up headphones well, this slightly changes the sound picture). Natural and pushy bass is worth mentioning separately and dynamics on low frequency range generally.

Keep in mind that this model has certain requirements for the quality of the source, it is clearly noticeable exponentially when using 99 Series Silver Plated upgrade cables. Considering that the model is not new on the market for a long time, there are practically no competitors today, we can safely recommend 99 classic for purchase in 2020.

★ Our choice.

SPECS

  • Transducer size: 40mm
  • Frequency response: 15Hz – 25KHz
  • Sensitivity: 103dB at 1KHz, 1mW
  • Impedance: 32 Ohm
  • Rated input power: 30mW
  • Maximum input power: 50mW
  • Detachable Kevlar OFC cable
  • Plug: 3.5mm gold plated
  • Weight: 260 gr (9.2 ounces) without cables
  • Ear-cups: walnut wood
  • Site: https://mezeaudio.com/

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