Meze Audio Elite is the company's most advanced planar magnetic headphones yet

Meze Audio Elite planar magnetic headphones
(Image credit: Meze Audio)

High-end Romanian headphone outfit Meze Audio (which recently celebrated 10 years in the business with a set of hand-painted, limited edition over-ears) is continuing its collaboration with acoustic engineering firm Rinaro Isodynamics for the release of the new Elite Isodynamic Hybrid Array headphones. 

And the Meze Elite isn't just any high-end set of cans: both companies claim this new flagship model is their most advanced planar magnetic set of headphones to date.

Meze Audio Elite's otherworldly design

(Image credit: Meze Audio)

Elite is reportedly the result of three years of research and development. Powering the headphones is a custom-developed MZ3SE Isodynamic Hybrid Array driver created by Rinaro, which utilises a combination of individual switchback and spiral shaped voice coils in its one driver, thus promising to target soundwaves with more accuracy around the natural form of the ear.

Said driver features Rinaro Parus, a new diaphragm material that has been developed specifically for the Elite. This low mass acoustic diaphragm is produced with "bespoke sequential biaxial lengthening technology", a process that involves stretching the material in transverse directions at elevated temperatures to improve structural performance.

On the outside, the striking, otherworldly chassis combines aluminium, carbon fibre and leather to boast maximum comfort and durability. Another new addition developed especially for the Elite is the 25mm-deep hybrid ear cushions, a solution which aims to marry the qualities of Alcantara (a premium synthetic, suede-like microfibre noted for its durability) and leather into a single design.

Meze Audio Elite earcups

(Image credit: Meze Audio)

Besides comfort, the combination promises to lower the bass pressure and deliver an airy sound signature "in which sound waves appear to transcend the space around to create an immersive experience".

In an admirable nod to long-term sustainability, the Elites are also fully serviceable: from the replaceable earpads to the high-performance materials used, every part on the headphone chassis can be easily disassembled and serviced.

From looks to technology, Meze Audio assures buyers these headphones were designed to last a lifetime – and considering the asking fee, that's good news.

Meze Audio Elite is now available for pre-order worldwide, retailing for £3699 / $4000 / AU$6500 / €4000 at MezeAudio and select UK and US retailers.


Intrigued? Consult our recent Meze Audio 99 Classics review

Read up on other recent planar magnetic headphone releases 

On the market for a very good pair of headphones? Peruse our pick of the best audiophile headphones 2021

Becky has been a full-time staff writer at What Hi-Fi? since March 2019. Prior to gaining her MA in Journalism in 2018, she freelanced as an arts critic alongside a 20-year career as a professional dancer and aerialist – any love of dance is of course tethered to a love of music. Becky has previously contributed to Stuff, FourFourTwo, This is Cabaret and The Stage. When not writing, she dances, spins in the air, drinks coffee, watches football or surfs in Cornwall with her other half – a football writer whose talent knows no bounds.