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Meze 99 Neo Review

The Meze 99 Neo is a compelling choice for music enthusiasts seeking a blend of style, comfort, and impressive sound quality.
Meze 99 Neo

Born from the quest for impeccable sound quality, the Meze 99 Neo is a step toward the idea of creating audio gear that truly resonates with music enthusiasts without having to pay a high price. This comprehensive review dives deep into the heart of the Meze 99 Neo, exploring its design, comfort, features, and sound quality in detail. So, whether you’re a seasoned audiophile or a budding music lover, let’s embark on this sonic journey together.

Key Specifications

  • Type: Over-ear, closed-back
  • Driver Size: 40 mm
  • Frequency Response: 15 Hz – 25 kHz
  • Sensitivity: 103 dB at 1 kHz, 1 mW
  • Impedance: 26 Ohms
  • Detachable Cable: Yes
    • Cable Length: 1.2 m (3.9 ft) and 3 m (9.8 ft) cables included
    • Cable Type: Kevlar-reinforced OFC (Oxygen-Free Copper) with gold-plated connectors
  • Connector: 3.5mm gold-plated jack
    • Adapter: 6.3 mm gold-plated adapter included
  • Weight: 260 g (9.17 oz) without cables
  • Ear Pads: Memory foam, covered in soft PU leather
  • Headband: Spring steel headband with a durable PU leather coating
  • Carrying Case: Hard EVA carrying pouch included
  • Build Materials:
    • Ear Cups: ABS Plastic
    • Finish: Matte

Overview

Aesthetically pleasing and acoustically proficient, the Meze 99 Neo is a slightly more affordable version of the widely successful Meze 99 Classic, offering a similar listening experience without the premium price tag.

The 99 Neo boasts a robust build, remarkable comfort, and an engaging sound profile that can captivate even the most discerning listeners. Its warm, balanced sound signature, combined with a striking design, makes it an excellent choice for listening to most genres of music, watching movies, and even gaming.

Design & Comfort

The 99 Neo’s design harmoniously blends minimalism and modernity. The headphones feature black textured plastic ear cups, a zinc alloy headband, and an overall matte finish that exudes an understated elegance. Unlike the wood-finished 99 Classic, the 99 Neo sports a more metro, edgier look, making it an appealing choice for the contemporary listener.

Despite its understated aesthetics, the Meze 99 Neo doesn’t skimp on build quality. The headphones are meticulously crafted with screws and metal fixings, promising complete serviceability by the user.

The Headband

The Meze 99 Neo features a self-adjusting headband, a design choice that not only enhances comfort but also ensures an effortless fit. The suspension-style headband automatically conforms to the shape of your head, eliminating the need for manual adjustments. The headband, made of stamped manganese spring steel, strikes a perfect balance between durability and flexibility, contributing to the overall comfort of the headphones.

The Ear Cups

The ear cups of the 99 Neo, made of ABS plastic, are as functional as they are stylish. The ear cups don’t rotate or swivel but move just enough to ensure a comfortable fit and provide a solid seal, even if you wear glasses.

Overall Comfort

One of the standout aspects of the Meze 99 Neo is how light and comfortable they are to wear. The headphones are designed to offer a fatigue-free listening experience, making them ideal for extended listening sessions. The self-adjusting headband, the reasonably deep ear cups, and the moderate clamping force work in synergy to deliver a high level of comfort that is rare in this price range.

Features

The Meze 99 Neo is packed with features that elevate it from being just another pair of headphones to a solid piece of audio gear. From its detachable cables to its impressive accessories, every aspect of the 99 Neo has been thoughtfully designed to enhance the listener’s experience.

The 99 Neo comes with a 4ft long cable, primarily designed for portable use. The cable features an inline button remote for seamless control and is terminated with a gold-plated 3.5mm 4-pole jack. As mentioned, the cable is detachable, making it easy to replace or swap out to, say, these amazing 4.4mm balanced cables, also from Meze. The cables connect to the headphones through two 3.5mm mono jack plugs that lock securely when inserted.

Accessories

The Meze 99 Neo doesn’t disappoint when it comes to accessories. The headphones come with a semi-stiffened contoured zipper case for safe storage, a small zipper round bag for holding your accessories, an airline adapter, and a quarter jack adapter. The hard case, with its meshed nylon finish, not only offers protection but also adds a touch of style to the headphone package. What I love about this case is that it offers solid protection without being too bulky.

Sound Quality

The Meze 99 Neo offer a warm, balanced sound profile that is a delight to the ears. The soundstage feels slightly small due mostly to the nature of closed-back headphones, and even then it feels smaller than similar headphones. Thankfully the imaging is accurate, giving you a good idea of instrument placement when listening to music, and sound positioning when playing games.

The bass response of the Meze 99 Neo is full and impactful without being too overbearing. While it is not bass-heavy, it provides sufficient quantity to suit almost any music genre. That being said, it can sometimes sound a bit muddy, losing detail in the process.

The mid-range of the 99 Neo is almost identical to that of the 99 Classic, offering plenty of depth and clarity. The mids have a warmth and fullness that make them perfect for a wide range of music genres. Whether you’re listening to acoustic music or rock, the 99 Neo’s mid-range delivers an engaging and immersive sound.

The treble response of the Meze 99 Neo is smooth and non-offensive. It offers a good amount of detail without being overly bright or harsh. The treble beautifully complements the warm mid-range and the full bass, creating a well-rounded sound profile that is pleasing to the ears.

Also of note is the 99 Neo is extremely easy to drive, which makes sense given the rather low impedance of 26 ohms. I had no issues using a simple USB-C to 3.5mm dongle for my phone, and they even sounded great connected to my Nintendo Switch.

Final Thoughts

The Meze 99 Neo is a compelling choice for music enthusiasts seeking a blend of style, comfort, and impressive sound quality. Its robust build, elegant and timeless design, and engaging sound profile make it a worthy contender in its price range. The 99 Neo’s unique combination of features and sound performance makes it a worthwhile consideration for those in search of a well-rounded pair of headphones without having to break the bank.

HiFi Oasis Verdict

HiFi Oasis Verdict
7 10 0 1
7/10
Total Score
  • Design & Comfort
    8/10 Very good
  • Features
    7/10 Good
  • Sound
    7/10 Good

Pros

  • Warm and balanced sound profile with solid mids
  • Mostly good imaging and soundstage
  • Extremely easy to drive, no issues with being used with portable devices or game consoles
  • Parts can be easily replaced or serviced
  • Included cable and storage case are good quality
  • Comfortable, well built

Cons

  • Bass can be muddy, lacks detail
  • Soundstage not great
Total
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