Audeze LCD-XC, 2016

I received my LCD-XC’s last Friday. It took about three weeks, including shipping time, to get the headphones repaired. Not exactly the snappiest of turnarounds, but not the end of the world either. One other point to mention: Audeze revamped their drivers for the new year. You can read a summary of changes here.

I didn’t read the entirety of the first post from that link before I listened to the new XC’s, but I have to agree that the changes are not that subtle. The tipped-up midrange? It’s been ameliorated somewhat without losing any articulation. However, I wouldn’t call it forgiving either. Let’s just say it remains honest, almost to a fault.

A change that I’m not so sure about deals with the new ‘LC network’ in the aforementioned Head-Fi post. I definitely found the bass response altered from what I was used to. The bottom octaves aren’t as muscular, instead exhibiting a bass response that’s more akin to what I find in my Sennheiser HD 600’s. It’s a leaner presentation that reminds me of loudspeakers that have their woofers voiced for quickness and agility rather than weight.

To current XC owners, if you like the sound signature the way it is, I wouldn’t clamor for an upgrade path. Enjoy the way it sounds now, knowing that you’re one driver failure away from (basically) a different headphone. For those that have listened to the XC’s and found them a bit too hyper, it might be time to visit your nearest dealer and give them another shot.

The LCD-XC’s are dead, long live the LCD-XC’s!

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