By Siva Om on Tue, 04/02/2013
I recently had the opportunity to chat with Antonio Meze, the extremely talented designer of Meze ebony wood headphones. Antonio Meze is both a classic-modernist designer as well as a musician and audiophile, all of which is apparent the moment you put on a pair of his headphones. The quality of craftsmanship is simply exceptional, as is the quality of sound!
If you aren’t already familiar with Meze headphones, I can tell you, they are some of the most comfortable, best-sounding ones I've come across. They are a music lover's dream headphones, crisply rendering the pristine sound quality of a recording studio or the expansive acoustics of a concert hall, all with a crystal-clear and smooth-as-silk delivery.
iPhone Life: Can you tell us a little about how you feel the Meze headphone's wooden driver encasements enhance the quality and richness of sound?
Meze: Sound in headphones (and speakers) depends on many factors. Drivers, technical specs and shape, size, and material of enclosure all have to work together to create the final sound. After all, it's an acoustic instrument and what your ear perceives is the physical vibration of not only the membrane but also the enclosure. We found wood helps give a warmer, more natural timbre. We did a lot of fine-tuning work to have a good match between drivers and enclosure.
iPhone Life: The Meze headphones are a true audiophile’s delight. What inspired you to design such high-end headphones?
Meze: I am a product designer but also a music lover and a musician. I am also surrounded by many musicians and artists. So I wanted to combine these two passions (design and music) into one. It all started taking shape when one day I went out to buy new headphones and there was nothing that I really felt happy with. There are many good headphones out there, but they rarely look good. The good-looking ones usually have poor sound.
iPhone Life: People may wonder why you have chosen not to create a pair of headphones that include an inline mic, at least so far. Can you please shed a little light on the matter?
Meze: Simply because headphones such as ours are meant for listening music. That’s why I call them Classics. I wanted to make the best possible headphones without going all gadgety. Mic, Bluetooth, volume-on-cable, are all things that complicate in a way that I feel takes away from the main aspect of the product. I want people to experience the music in a very simple unhindered way.
But on that note, our new earphones that are coming out this summer will actually include a mic and volume controls, only because earbuds are geared more toward today's busy and active people.
iPhone Life: I would imagine with such a great product, the public response would be overwhelmingly positive. Can you share with us some of the positive feedback you have received?
Meze: We didn't know what to expect at the beginning, as our team is mainly designers, musicians and engineers, not marketers and salespeople. But we do get a lot of "fan-mail" from people praising the headphones, which is surprising but also very rewarding for me. I think people write us such e-mails because they feel that we are a small brand (as we keep in touch with all clients and try to make them happy) and that they can have a personal connection with us. Which they do.
Stay tuned for my upcoming detailed reviews of Meze deluxe headphones.