With easy availability of high-resolution audio in India through Apple Music, many users are now choosing to go back to wired headphones or earphones, and some are even investing in high-end options. It’s possible to put together a decent audiophile kit on a budget, but the more you spend, the better the overall experience. Of course, the heart of any audiophile setup is a pair of headphones, and the Meze 99 Classics that I’m reviewing here is highly regarded in its price segment.
Priced at Rs. 24,999, the Meze 99 Classics is a pair of wired over-ear headphones focused on design and sound quality. Everything in the package is undeniably premium, from the wood casings and gold accents to the plush padding and high-quality wiring. Does the Meze 99 Classics live up to expectations when it comes to sound? Find out in this review.
The Meze 99 Classics is strikingly attractive
Well known among people who follow the high-end audio space keenly, Meze Audio was founded in Romania in 2011, and has quickly grown to become one of the most respected names in the segment. The Meze 99 Classics was the company’s first mainstream product, and is still among its top-selling headsets. A lot of that has to do with its design and specifications.
The over-ear Meze 99 Classics is impressive to look at. It feels solid and well-built, and isn’t too heavy even with wooden driver casings. The frame is metal with gold accents on some components, while the headband is lined with artificial leather and is flexible enough to adjust to the head of the wearer. There is thick padding around the ears, and all of this makes this pair of headphones both look and feel great.
Interestingly, the two sides of this pair of headphones aren’t connected to each other in any way, and operate independently with their own 2.5mm input sockets. Indeed, it doesn’t even matter how you wear these headphones; either side can operate as the left or right channel without affecting fit or comfort.
The sales package includes a hard carry case, a 1.2m cable with an in-line microphone, a 3m cable without a microphone, a 6.3mm adapter, an airline adapter, and a small pouch for the extra cables that fits within the carry case. Aftermarket cables are also available, such as the 2.5mm balanced upgrade cable that I used for much of my review.
The Meze 99 Classics has 40mm dynamic drivers, and a frequency response range of 15-25,000Hz. The impedance is 32 Ohms, and so it can be driven easily enough by even a smartphone or laptop without the need for an amplifier. As mentioned, you can use the Meze 99 Classics for voice calls if you use the 1.2m cable that comes with it, but this is primarily an audiophile-grade headset that is meant for music, above all else.
Straightforward approach to sound on the Meze 99 Classics
With the mainstream segment for audio having almost entirely moved to Bluetooth connectivity, products such as the Meze 99 Classics are a lot less common than they were just a few years ago. However, you’ll find that wired headphones deliver a far better sonic experience than …….