Meze Audio 99 Classics
Over-ear headphones (Walnut/Gold)
From Meze Audio: 99 Classics over-Ear Headphones
Our take on the Meze Audio 99 Classics by Crutchfield's Jeff Miller
The Meze Audio 99 Classics are well-engineered headphones made of premium materials like real walnut and steel.
Impressive headphones, designed and assembled with care
I'm glad I got a chance to meet Antonio Meze and the whole Meze Audio team at this year's CanJam NYC. I was able to see their earnest enthusiasm for building headphones, firsthand. Of course, you could probably sense that passion just by holding the Meze Audio 99 Classics — or placing these well-constructed headphones on your head.
Antonio has an engineering background, so he told me the build quality was a top priority. Smooth, real walnut earcups and a strong metal frame give these headphones an attractive look and durable feel. The well-crafted earcups, headband, and frame are held together by heavy-duty hardware — "never glued," Meze was quick to point out.
Organic, energetic sound
Antonio said that his goal for the 99 Classics was to deliver an overall headphone experience that punches above its weight. And "punch" is a good word for the sound they deliver. You get lively, musical sound with quick, muscular bass.
They are very easy to drive, so you can certainly connect them to your phone (or your phone's minijack adapter). I primarily listened to them through my AudioQuest DragonFly® Black plug-in USB DAC/headphone amp, and that really helped open up the sound — I heard better stereo imaging and separation of instruments than I did with just my phone.
My impressions — a fun listen across the board
I toggled through a few "New Releases" on Spotify at the time I auditioned these 'phones. The 99 Classics aren't particularly picky, and lent might and muscle to all types of music, from acoustic-driven Dave Matthews Band tracks (considered local guys here in Charlottesville), to some stripped-down Prince piano-and-vocal demos, to the intricately produced Kanye/Kid Cudi project.
Be aware that these headphones don't isolate sound as well as some other closed-back models. My floor here at Crutchfield HQ is quieter than other areas of the building, so my co-workers knew what music I was playing.
On Jason Isbell's "Whisper," the artist's twangy vocals fit in just right with the keys, percussion, and sprawling, singing slide guitar. The sound felt as well put together — and striking — as the headphones themselves.
The straightforward hip-hop track "The Games We Play" by Pusha T hit with more intensity than I've heard with other headphones tuned for a flatter frequency response. The beat and bass knocked with energy, but didn't bloat the mix, while Push's bars had a presence that added a level of immediacy and excitement.
Comfortable, no-fuss fit
These headphones felt surprisingly lightweight in my hand, and somehow felt even lighter when I wore them. The heavy-duty steel headband uses a spring suspension system that seems to "pop" into place, without a lot of moving around or adjusting. For me, it was one and done. And the super-soft, split-leather ear pads surrounded my ear with the right combo of firmness and give.
Beautifully crafted, real walnut wood earcups
There's no doubt that the 99 Classics' walnut earcups play a huge part in shaping the naturally dynamic sound. According to Meze, the wood used here has been responsibly harvested — all the trees are properly certified and have reached the end of their life cycle.
It takes 18 months for wood to dry completely before they can craft them into shape. Sure, there are ways to cheat that process — they could add steam or excess heat — but the result would be less than ideal in structure, appearance, and acoustic performance. There are some things you just can't microwave.
- over-the-ear, closed-back headphones
- solidly constructed, lightweight design
- smooth, real walnut earcups provide naturally energetic sound
- magnesium alloy frame with zinc alloy hardware
- 40mm mylar diaphragms and neodymium magnets deliver clear sound with tight, strong bass
- headset with spring steel suspension system for a comfortable, easily adjustable fit
- soft bi-cast leather earpads with medium-density memory foam
- two detachable, Kevlar-reinforced cables included, both terminated with a gold-plated 3.5mm miniplug:
- 9.4-foot oxygen-free copper cable
- 3.9-foot cable with in-line 3-button remote and microphone for music and calls
- 1/4" adapter included
- airplane adapter included
- frequency response: 15-25,000 Hz
- sensitivity: 103 dB
- impedance: 32 ohms
- weight: 9.3 oz.
- warranty: 2 years
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
What's in the Box:
- Over-ear headphones (Walnut/Gold)
- 9.9' Cable (straight 3.5mm plug)
- 47" Cable with in-line mic/remote (straight 3.5mm plug)
- 3.5mm-to-1/4" adapter
- Airline adapter (single female 3.5mm jack to dual male 3.5mm plugs)
- Soft zippered cable storage pouch
- Hard zippered case
- 2 Meze Audio decals
Meze Audio 99 Classics Reviews
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Features and Specs
|Earcup Width x Height||3.396" x 3.993"|
|Mic For Taking Calls||Yes|
|Frequency Response||15-25k Hz|
|Cord Length||47" + 119"|
|1/4-inch Adapter Included||Yes|
|Parts Warranty||1 Year|
|Labor Warranty||1 Year|
Overview: The Meze Audio 99 Classics over-ear headphones are hand-crafted with natural materials and metal hardware to create a product that looks as good as it sounds. The headphones feature luxurious wood ear cups, soft memory foam ear pads, and a strong manganese spring steel headband. Many of the components of the 99 Classics are replaceable, if needed. The 99 Classics come with two cables, one with an in-line remote and microphone for music playback and phone calls. The headphones also include a 1/4" adapter, airline adapter, and a hard, zippered black vinyl storage case.
Wood Ear Cups: The stylish ear cups of the 99 Classics headphones are made of walnut with a grain that makes them as unique as fingerprints. The wood is harvested from mature trees, then precision carved on a CNC machine, then hand finished and polished. The shaping process takes up to 8 hours for each pair of ear cups, while the sanding, lacquering, and finishing process takes another 45 days. Each wooden component is carefully inspected for zero flaws in order to reach final assembly. The natural wood ear cups provide a warm, clear sound signature without coloring the music.
Other Components: The 99 Classics are manufactured with components that are well-made, but replaceable if needed. The headphones are put together using quality cast zinc alloy hardware instead of glue. The stamped manganese spring steel frame and soft, self-adjusting headband deliver even pressure for a comfortable fit for any user. The ear pads are made with medium density memory foam, covered with soft, comfortable PU leather for excellent sound isolation.
Drivers: The 99 Classics headphones feature dynamic 40mm neodymium and Mylar transducers that deliver crisp, clear audio with minimal distortion.
Cables: Two OFC (oxygen-free copper) cables are included with the 99 Classics. Both cables feature a Kevlar fabric sheath to prevent tangles and reduce contact noise, and gold-plated 3.5mm terminals at each end (including dual-sided plugs on the headphone side). The headphones are symmetrical, so there is no designated left or right ear cup. The left and right channel markings on the cable terminals determine the left-right orientation of the headphones. The left channel plug has a tactile dot to enable you to identify the channels without looking. One cable is nearly 10 feet in length, while the other cable is 47" with an Android and Apple-compatible in-line remote and microphone for controlling music playback and phone calls. It does not have a volume control. In addition, a snap-on 3.5mm-to-1/4" adapter is included for use with your home components and pro audio gear, and an airline adapter for enjoying in-flight entertainment. The 99 Classics include a soft, zippered pouch for storing your cables and adapters.
- Frequency Response: 15Hz - 25kHz
- Rated Impedance: 32Ω
- Sensitivity: 103dB (+/- 3dB) 1mW @ 1 kHz
- Rated Input Power: 30mW
- Maximum Input Power: 50mW
- Dimensions: Width 3.396", Height 3.993", Depth 2.098"
- Weight: 10.7 ounces (with 47" cable), 9.2 ounces (without cable)
Our Product Research Team
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Why did you buy this?
After extensive researches, I wanted to give this worthy headphone a try. [ Shengyi Jul 19, 2018 ]
It received good reviews for sound and I like the design [ John Jul 25, 2018 ]
Sounds [ B Jul 19, 2018 ]
Review by Alan Sircom in Ultimate Headphone Guide - Summer 2018 [ Rick Jun 29, 2018 ]
1 question already asked
The Meze Audio 99 Classics are wired (non-Bluetooth) over-the-ear headphones. For more details or to discuss further, please contact an Advisor directly by phone (888.955.6000) or online chat. Thanks! [ Larry Jul 10, 2018 ] Staff
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