Focal has announced a new closed-back headphone to rival its open-back Utopias, the $4499 Focal Stellia.

The new headphones not only include a new generation of exclusive speaker drivers from Focal, the French company has achieved a nominal impedance of 35 ohms, making the headphones driveable from the output of a phone, tablet or laptop if required — audiophile headphones that are made to travel, and with a nice ‘cognac and mocha’ faux-leather travel case to match the new headphone’s colours.

The new generation of electrodynamic speaker drivers use Focal’s ‘M’-shaped pure beryllium dome, beryllium offering mass seven times lighter than titanium of identical rigidity, and they use an exclusive-to-Focal frameless 100% copper voice coil magnetically coupled to the motor. The unusually low combined mass allows, according to Focal, “reproduction of the tiniest sound details at both high and low frequencies.” The Stellia has an extensive frequency response of 5Hz–40kHz.

The earpads are also designed to improve linearity: “50% of their height is designed to diffuse sound through a non-perforated full-grain leather,” says Focal, while “50% absorbs the audio signal through an acoustic cloth which covers the memory foam. This solution also provides a linear frequency range between 1 and 10kHz.”

Two cables are provided — a home 3-metre cable with symmetrical 4-pin XLR connector, the second designed to be portable, a 1.2m with 3.5mm stereo minijack and 6.35mm adapter plug.

We note that the open-back Utopias have a higher RRP of $5499, but are currently available at $3999 (Addicted to Audio's Utopia link here) – making the Stellias now the highest-level headphone from the French marque.

Focal has simultaneously released the Arche DAC and headphone amplifier: more information here.

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