Focal looks to build on its headphones success with stunning Celestee

Focal Celestee
(Image credit: Focal)

Focal has enjoyed indisputable success with its wired headphones in recent years, most notably with its Elegia and Stellia closed-back models. And it’s looking to carry on that momentum with a new closed-back offering. The Focal Celestee sit between those two existing models in price, on sale from this month for £999 ($990, AU$1399), and have been inspired by their engineering and design.

While the Celestee will be instantly recognisable as Focal headphones to those familiar with the French brand's previous fare, owing mostly to the ornate ear cup design and thick microfibre leather headband, they introduce a new navy blue and copper aesthetic. Like their siblings, they also come with matching cables and thermoformed woven carrying case.

Focal Celestee

(Image credit: Focal)

Focal’s engineers have drawn from their experience in making the Elegia and introduced an acoustic treatment inside the Celestee ear cups. They also use the 40mm Aluminium/Magnesium ‘M’-shaped dome full-range drivers also found inside their closed-back cousins. Impedance is a lowly 35 ohms, which should make them suitable partners for phones and portable audio players.

While speakers are very much the Saint-Étienne-based brand's heritage and vocation, headphones seem to be becoming a bigger part of its focus. Only recently our colleagues Down Under at our sister title, Australian Hi-Fi magazine, were impressed by the Focal Arche DAC and headphone amp. Will the Celestee be yet another Focal pair to find itself on our best audiophile headphones list? We hope to find out very soon.


Best headphones 2021

Best DACs 2021: USB, portable and desktop DACs

Get killer on-the-go sound quality with this portable phone package

Becky Roberts

Becky is the managing editor of What Hi-Fi? and, since her recent move to Melbourne, also the editor of Australian Hi-Fi magazine. During her 10 years in the hi-fi industry, she has been fortunate enough to travel the world to report on the biggest and most exciting brands in hi-fi and consumer tech (and has had the jetlag and hangovers to remember them by). In her spare time, Becky can often be found running, watching Liverpool FC and horror movies, and hunting for gluten-free cake.