The Focal Celestee are high-quality audiophile headphones with a closed back panel. They have a fairly neutral sound profile with soft mids, so that voices and main instruments are reproduced clearly, presently and precisely.
They are very comfortable even during long listening sessions. Their enclosed design can help block out some ambient noise, even if they can't isolate you from the rumble of bus or airplane engines. However, they have difficulty reproducing deep bass and their highs are a bit dark.
Aesthetic build quality with an 'M' -shaped aluminum-magnesium dome driver
The Focal Celestee does not deviate from the proven design of the entire Focal headphone range. Externally, the Celestee is presented in a new color scheme with navy blue and gold accents. Compared to the silver and black colors on the previous Elegia headphones, this is definitely a more polarizing color choice.
The ear cups feature a new "honeycomb" design that mimics the open-back design of the Focal Celestee, but the holes are filled and not covered by the mess to maintain the closed design.
The build quality of the Celestee is excellent and one of the best. The headphones are covered in semi-aniline leather, which feels great to the touch, but that premium feel comes at the expense of the light weight: the Celestee weighs a whopping 430g, which is significantly heavier than some of its cheaper competitors, but the headband helps keep the weight down to distribute on the head, and the clamping force is just right.
The Focal Celestee has a 40 mm aluminum-magnesium dome driver in M-shape, which is light and at the same time incredibly stable. This driver delivers excellent sound quality.
The scope of delivery includes a sturdy transport case and a 3,5 m long cable with 3,5 mm jack and 6,35 mm adapter. Focal positions the Celestee as headphones that you can take with you on the go.
High quality, neutral sound with optimal comfort
The Focal Celestee is characterized by a neutral sound. It has a soft, warm sound profile. It lacks a muffled deep bass, but the mids are exceptionally neutral, so voices and lead instruments are present, detailed and clear.
However, the highs are under-emphasized, so voices sound obscured and sibilants such as S and T sounds are dark. Since they have a closed design, their passive soundstage is perceived as a little small and as coming from inside the head rather than coming from the front.
The Focal Celestee is one of the best sounding closed back headphones you can buy. These headphones offer an enormous amount of detail and an unbelievable image, which enables you to see exactly where the individual instruments are coming from. The image is so good that you can even see instruments behind you.
In terms of soundstage, the Celestee is average and relatively narrow compared to open-top headphones. The Celestee plays the music very frontally, as if you were sitting in the front row of a concert, which some might like. Those looking for a large soundstage and relaxed sound should look elsewhere.
As for tonal balance, the Focal Celestee is warm with a noticeable boost in the bass and sub-bass ranges. This helps make music sound impressive and entertaining, but it's a little too much for our tastes. The bass has great texture, resolution, and impact. Celestee was able to reproduce realistic sounding kick drums.
Final thoughts on Focal Celestee
The isolation of the Focal Celestee is surprisingly effective so there is no need to worry about the lack of ANC. The processing quality is also first class. These headphones are designed for a great listening experience at home.
Colors: navy blue / copper
Size: 9,8 x 9,4 x 4,7 inches (with carrying case)
Weight: 15,2 ounces
Driver size: 'M' -shaped aluminum / magnesium dome full-range loudspeaker
Accessories included: 1 x 4-foot OFC 24 AWG cable with 1/8-inch unbalanced TRS phone plug, 1 x phone adapter, 1/8-inch point socket, 1/4-inch point plug, carrying case