Meze Audio Empyrean II Headphone Review & Comparison

Read Time: Approx. 15 min.
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What Was Once Considered End-Game Sound Is Now Redefined  

The Empyrean holds a special place in my heart. Back when I was a wee audiophile starting at Moon Audio, the Empyrean was one of the first reviews I did here. Now, I've always been a music lover, musician, and performer from an early age - but the Empyrean was the first headphone that really opened my eyes to a totally different and new sonic landscape. It's not that I wasn't an audiophile before the Empyrean, but it helped my... conversion? My acceptance - from pro audio to high-end consumer audio. And here we are - officially putting the original Empyrean on the shelf and replacing it with the new Empyrean II headphone. Is it twice as good?

The word Empyrean means relating to heaven or the sky (adj), or in particular, the highest part of heaven (n). Now I don’t know what the highest part of heaven is, but I would imagine there’s some pretty cool stuff there. That’s probably what Meze Audio was going for when they selected this name: the idea that the Empyrean would open up aural dimensions of space and time or at least take you to new heights of sonic enlightenment. The sheer craftsmanship and detail of the Meze Empyrean put it in a category all its own. At the time it was one of the best out there, and frankly, it still holds its own today, especially for those who love an expansive sound and warmer presentation. That being said, the original Empyrean was far from a detail freak, and as such it wasn't for everyone. The Empyrean II sets out to fix that. Let's dig a little deeper and see if the Empyrean (II) is now the Everyman's end-game headphone it was meant to be. 

Drew's Take

"When it comes to music, I'm a detail and resolution freak. I'm excited that the Empyrean II is more defined and has better detail separation than the original. The presentation is astounding - it's like the Line Array Speaker systems used at concerts. You'll see these big curved speakers at a show and the reason you do a line array is to give pinpoint accuracy no matter where you are in the stadium. Otherwise, you're just pointing all the speakers in one direction and hoping you don't get a bad seat where the sound suffers. The New Empyrean reminds me of a line array in this regard. The presentation of the Elite is a little bit bigger, but the Empyrean II is more pinpoint accurate. Everything is more controlled." -Drew Baird P.E., Founder and CEO

Meze Empyrean II Headphones Review & Comparison Video

Riff Notes Logo


Amazing Control and Tuning - More Definition than Original Empyrean
Stellar Meze Audio Soundstage
Premium Comfort and Materials


Slightly Less Efficient Than OG Empyrean & Elite (Negligible)
Officially Replaces the Empyrean 1 (sad face)

Empyrean II Headphone Features:

  • The second generation of Meze Audio's popular Empyrean Headphone
  • Isodynamic Hybrid Array Driver
  • Accurate sound reproduction
  • Lightweight for longer listening sessions
  • Ergonomic shape for extreme comfort
  • Rinaro Isoplanar Diaphragm weighing only 0.16 g
  • New MZ3 frame
  • Isomagnetic earcup to earpad coupling technology
  • Two different sets of premium earpads to adjust your sound
  • Fully Serviceable headphone design

Meze Audio & Rinaro Isodynamics

The Empyrean and Empyrean II are the product of two passionate companies coming together to explore what is possible beyond their individual capabilities. The result is a no-compromise headphone embodying Meze’s daring aesthetic and user-centered design approach and Rinaro’s experience in research and development within the field of planar magnetics. Rinaro, a somewhat progressive audio company, has at the heart of its technology, a research and development team that has been at the forefront of planar magnetic development since the 1980s. What originally started as a state-funded initiative with a focus on innovation has now entered a new chapter of audio progression with the opening of a cutting-edge industrial facility in Ukraine. - Meze Audio

About Meze & Rinaro
Meze Audio: For the past almost 15 years, Meze Audio has been developing audiophile over-ear headphones and earphones renowned for their timeless design, pure comfort, and engaging, vivid sound. From looks to technology, Meze Audio products are designed to surpass all short-living trends and become heirlooms, rather than just headphones. Today, founder Antonio Meze and his skilled team design and develop their products in Baia Mare, Romania, in the spirit of their original ‘no-compromise’ vision.

Rinaro Isodynamics: Rinaro originated in the USSR (today’s Ukraine) during the Cold War as part of a state-funded acoustic technology research program. With government backing and access to advanced testing facilities, the team was able to focus all of its efforts on planar magnetics: a field they have continued to innovate in for the last 30 years, since the collapse of the USSR. In the last decade, Rinaro has expanded its capabilities and capacity with the development of state-of-the-art R&D and manufacturing facilities in Ukraine and Poland. The new facilities have been a driving force in the creation of the revolutionary Isodynamic Hybrid Array technology found in Meze Empyrean and ELITE headphones.
EMPYREAN II: GATEWAY TO SONIC PARADISE - Building upon the legacy of its predecessor, Empyrean II emerges as a symphony of artistry, innovation and craftsmanship. “When we first talked about creating the second generation of Empyrean, I knew it would be far from easy. With many ideas in mind, I reached out to our community, eager to gather their feedback in any way I could. I wanted to dive into their hearts and minds, to understand their expectations, and so their input is what shaped the path toward Empyrean II. What followed was a test of patience and precision. At first, the possibilities seemed endless, but reality showed us that only a few of our plans were feasible. We made a lot of revisions to discover the right proportions and materials that would deliver the sound signature we aimed for.” -Alex Grigoras, Acoustic Engineer


I considered the first Empyrean a true work of art that also doubled as an end-game sound headphone. That was back in 2019. Here we are 4 years later looking at something that from the outside, seems similar enough to the original. Don't be fooled. If 2019 was end-game sound quality, then the Empyrean II is utterly mind-blowing. The thing is, the design and styling of the original Empyrean was a large part of the overall appeal of the headphone. An open-back design, wide headrest, amazing comfort, and of course the precision milling on the ear cups that are stunning to look at. The great thing about the Empyrean II is that it retains a lot of the original design, with a few updates here and there. 

The Empyrean II takes a lot of cues from the original. carbon fiber headband returns with a flexible and lightweight structure. It's incredibly strong and balances the weight well between the ear cups. The pressure distribution wings, otherwise known as the headrest, is also mostly unchanged. These patented suspension wings increase the leather headrest's surface area and contact with the top of the head, relieving uncomfortable pressure points. The leather headrest this time around is lined with soft felt-like material, feeling much more premium and actually cooler than the plain leather headrest, since it sits more atop the head with room between the head and leather rest. With the original Empyrean, the leather would feel hot after some time since there was little to no air circulation between your scalp and headphones. A minor but important upgrade here for greater comfort and longer listening sessions. 
Meze Empyrean II with AK KANN Ultra DAP and Black Dragon cable
The earcup adjustment mechanism has also gone unchanged - providing the cups with full-rotational and swivel movement for theoretically every head shape on the planet. It's a stellar design for making sure the headphone provides just enough pressure on the head to stay put and seal properly without adding any discomfort whatsoever. 
Close up of the Empyrean II grill design
One of my favorite aspects of the Empyrean returns with the precision-milled design on the ear cup exterior. You can tell it's a time-consuming process for this level of detail, and it provides a level of premium attention to detail that few flagship-level headphones match. This is the work of art, the part that draws you in for a closer look to realize that yes, somehow, you can still use this as a headphone too (not just a statement piece to put on a shelf to admire). Meze Audio went with a complete stealth black color scheme for the Empyrean II, and it's far from a simple boring pallet. Meze has incorporated silver accents on the top of the ear cup adjustment pole, the logo plaque in the middle of the ear cup, and finally the "II" logo on the ends of the yoke. The aluminum skeleton of the ear cup looks like a rough matte finish, but it's actually smooth to the touch. The grill catches enough light from any angle to provide the perfect texture to contrast the smooth finish elsewhere, as does the carbon fiber design on the headband. The Empyrean II is visually striking and modern - again, just a work of art. 

The cups are an ovoid shape and are a special design detail of the Empyrean. Most headphones have either a circular, elliptical, or even a rectangular design. However, Meze designed their ear cup in an ovoid shape, understanding the more natural shape of the ear should be mirrored by the ear pad – and even the driver too. Since the earpad fits the shape of the ear itself, it allows for less “room” within the earcup for sound to bounce around and get lost. In other words, you have a more direct channel to the music. The ovoid shape also allows for a smaller driver size compared to other planar magnetic headphones, resulting in reduced weight and longer listening sessions without ear fatigue.
Changing the pads on the Empyrean is also a very satisfying process. The pads are attached via a magnet system which keeps the pads snug but also prevents the possibility of breaking or tearing parts like on other headphones. Gently pry the pad off and they should remove themselves allowing you to attach the ear pads you are switching out. The pads themselves are attached to a ferromagnetic plate which channels the demagnetizing field back into the driver – increasing the efficiency by 1dB or 12% and deflecting 95% of stray fields away from the head. This is all part of the final tuning and performance of the hybrid array diaphragm; it's a great system all around.
Various ear pad shapes for headphones
Meze actually includes two very different types of ear pads with the Empyrean II: what they call the "Duo Hybrid" and the "Angled Alcantara." The different designs of these ear pads actually play a critical role in the tuning and tailoring of the listener's preference which we'll get into more in the Sound & Impressions section below.


For our second-generation model, Meze Audio’s specialists have further refined the exceptional Isodynamic Hybrid Array driver design from Rinaro Isodynamics, delivering a step-change performance.
Our goal was to enhance the headphones’ ability to reproduce fine details and achieve a more neutral sound signature, all the while preserving the original “easy to listen to” character.
Using ingenious tuning methods, our team revealed new possibilities in terms of resolution and detail retrieval, achieving a cleaner and more accurate representation of audio.


A symphony of form and texture, Empyrean II is an experience for the senses.
Crafted with precision via CNC milling, Empyrean II’s aluminum frame features a sleek black matte finish, and a redesigned grill, that draws inspiration from the bold and timeless art deco patterns.
In the center of the all-black frame, a silver accent casts a radiant glow.


Empyrean II comes with two sets of earpads, included for the ultimate sound customization, Duo and Angled Alcantara.
Crafted from a precise blend of premium leather and Alcantara, the Duo Earpads introduce a contemporary dimension to the signature sound profile of Empyrean II.
With leather forming the base half and Alcantara covering the rest, these earpads deliver a harmonious tonal balance that resonates across all music genres.

-Meze Audio, On the Empyrean II Design Elements

The Isodynamic Hybrid Array Driver

The Empyrean driver helped put Meze Audio on the radar of audiophiles around the world. There have been various iterations of the driver in their headphones since the original Empyrean, but the science of the ground-breaking driver design has stayed the same. As mentioned earlier, Meze teamed up with Rinaro to create the unique planar magnetic driver design called the Isodynamic Hybrid Array Driver. The hybrid design combines two independently shaped voice coils within the same diaphragm which delivers a more selective acoustic performance to the various areas within the structure of the ear. The first part is the hybrid magnet array, placed symmetrically on each side of the diaphragm, neodymium magnets are specifically arranged to create an efficient isodynamic magnetic field. This magnetic field is required for a uniform activation across the whole diaphragm surface. The second part of the driver is the Rinaro isoplanar diaphragm, which is amazingly light with a large active surface area, resulting in a more dynamic auditory experience.

There are a number of benefits to the hybrid driver design. It reduces the overall weight of the driver design and creates very accurately reproduced audio just to name a few. The Empyrean driver combines individual switchback and spiral-shaped voice coils, their unique shapes allow sound to be targeted with more accuracy around the natural form of the ear. This unique combination generates an increased exposure of direct sound wave frequencies over the 10kHz range and improves imaging and localization by decreasing the impact of shortwave time delays caused by diffused field reflections.
Isodynamic Hybrid Array Driver diagram
One of the problems with conventional planar magnetic arrays comes from reflected signals entering the ear canal with different time delays, thereby worsening the focus of 3D sound imaging. Combining different voice coil configurations makes it possible to create a better sound intensity distribution across the sound wavefront at high frequencies when directed at the auricle and ear canal. The switchback coil is better at reproducing lower frequencies and the spiral coil is better at the mid-high frequencies. The driver isn't the easiest to power, since it is a specialized planar magnetic driver. As with all things - especially planar magnetic drivers - the more power you throw at it the better it will sound. This is certainly the case with the Empyrean. Make sure you have decent amplification to power the headphones, as they will need some additional power from an amplifier or headphone amp to perform efficiently.
ARTISTRY MEETS CRAFTSMANSHIP - A natural step forward from our first ever planar magnetic headphone, Empyrean II retains all the beloved elements of its iconic predecessor, with an added touch of sculptural elegance. Crafted with precision via CNC milling, the frame features a sleek matte black finish with silver accents, and a redesigned grill that draws inspiration from the bold and timeless art deco patterns. “As good as the initial design looked, the headphones we thought were final proved to be fragile. The aluminum grill wasn’t turning out that great, there was an unexpected structural failure, and we were changing the colors almost daily, struggling to decide upon the perfect combination. A lot of determination, a few more iterations and we finally nailed it – Empyrean II.” – Vladimir Brezovszki, Product Designer


The original Empyrean was like being wrapped up in a cozy blanket in front of a fireplace. It was warm, dynamic, and had a very musical presentation. The bass and mids were plentiful and resonant, smooth throughout the spectrum, and there was a fair amount of clarity on top. The expansive soundstage was certainly a big part of the Empyrean experience - this was largely due in part to the revolutionary driver design.

At the time it was end-game sound for a lot of people - but like all things, there is always room for improvement. Thus expectations on what end-game sound - can sound like - also get exceeded time and time again for Meze Audio. With the original Empyrean headphone, Meze teamed up with Rinaro Isodynamics to create the revolutionary Isodynamic Hybrid Array Driver - a planar magnetic design that uses a dual coil to deliver more selective acoustic performances to various areas within the structure of the ear.  There have been a few redesigns and modifications made with the hybrid array driver - these showed up in the more efficient flagship - the Elite which had a much different tuning, and also the first time Meze put their driver in a closed-back headphone with a personal favorite - the Liric. Now we have yet another variation of the Hybrid Array with the Empyrean II.
What's New: For the second-generation Empyrean model, Meze has refined the Isodynamic Hybrid Array driver design, enhancing the headphones’ ability to reproduce fine details and achieve a more neutral sound signature, all the while preserving the original “easy to listen to” character. With the new tuning, there is better resolution and detail retrieval, achieving a cleaner and more accurate representation of audio. 
I'll summarize and simplify here - the Empyrean II is a better-sounding headphone in every single way possible. If the original Empyrean was warm and smooth, the Elite was "more" and had better clarity across the board, the Empyrean II is "controlled." As Drew describes it in his take - it's a line array at a big arena show. You have equal representation of the whole frequency spectrum, and the ability to control the sound representation that comes out of the Empyrean II is what sets it apart.

The bass and low mids are more defined - still maintaining that excellent extension and representation, but it's tighter than the original Empyrean, without sacrificing the impact it provides. Crank up any EDM track and you can hear the difference. Rather than feeling the overall effect of the bass response, the Empyrean II takes it over with precision and control. It's still there, it's just not bleeding into the other frequencies like before.

The same thing goes for the mids and highs. There's a lot more clarity across the board here compared to the original Empyrean. Tuned a lot more like the Elite in many ways, you'll find more of that top-end sparkle that the original Empyrean was missing. Mids are transparent and allow for vocals to shine through no matter what genre you throw at them. Again, the theme here is control. It's not that they're mid-forward in this regard, but that the planar magnetic driver with its dual coils, hybrid design, and tuning allows room for the specific frequencies to perform without getting in the way of other instrumentation or the overall arrangement.
The Empyrean II is a touch less efficient than the original and the Elite, but in the scheme of things it's negligible. You won't notice unless you have them side by side. It usually just meant about a 10-point volume difference between the original and new Empyrean in comparison when listening and testing them out on our Astell&Kern KANN Ultra music player.

The Empyrean II is a much more reference-friendly sound now, and will pair well with most genres, but I liked it especially for Classical, Jazz, and soundtracks since it still maintains that awesome, wide soundstage. Rock and quieter singer-songwriter, acoustic music sounded lovely too with great dynamics at low volumes. Meze also included 2 sets of ear pads - what they're calling Duo Hybrid and Angled Alcantara. The Duo is designed with both leather and Alcantara, whereas the angled earpads adjust the immediacy of the sound and how it interacts with the surface of the ear. It's a different presentation and these change the sound more than you would think, so experiment and see which one you prefer.

  • Improved Comfort: Angled Alcantara earpads are designed to conform to the shape of your ears and provide a comfortable fit. This can help reduce pressure points and discomfort, especially during extended listening sessions.
  • Enhanced Sound Quality: The angled design of Alcantara earpads can also improve the overall sound quality of your headphones. By positioning the drivers at a slight angle, sound waves can more easily reach your ears, resulting in a more natural and immersive listening experience.
Now and Then
by The Beatles
(Now and Then - Single)
I Want You
by Carter Vail
(The Interstellar Tennis Championship Vol. II)
by Switchfoot
(The Beautiful Letdown (Our Version))
Hand In My Pocket
by Alanis Morissette
(The Collection)
This statement that was released with the original Empyrean review was something that resonated with me. As a company, Meze Audio wasn't afraid to do something that no one else in the audiophile industry had done. They innovated and worked tirelessly to create a product that sounds exceptional and is equally a work of art. The point is, you can't say that about every headphone or audio gear out there. That's why the Empyrean legacy will continue to create audiophiles and lifelong music lovers - which is exactly what this passionate hobby needs. 


“Empyrean was born from passion, curiosity, and innovation. As a business, we have allowed ourselves the freedom to experiment and take risks in search of the perfect sound. To generate something truly remarkable, one must dare to explore, and that’s what we did with Empyrean. We pushed and refined industry standards and achieved a true game-changer for audiophiles.”Antonio Meze, Lead designer and Founder Meze Audio

The Arena Show: Empyrean Soundstage & Presentation

The Meze Audio Empyrean and Empyrean II are open-back design headphones. Open-back headphones are usually known for their wider soundstage than closed-back headphones. The Empyrean II has a tremendously wide soundstage with great positioning of the instruments and vocals. The instrumentation and voicings in the mix are allowed to breathe and perform all on their own.

As a musician myself, I've played on a large variety of stages from small-town pubs to arenas and amphitheaters, and I equate my first few Empyrean II listening sessions as a musician playing on a huge stage for the first time. Starting out as a band you’re playing in small dive bars where you’re literally standing on top of each other for space, and then once you make it to an arena show you have ten feet or more between you and your bandmates. The Empyrean II is the arena show. Listening to some high-resolution audio files from some of the Beatles' mid-to-early records, it’s interesting to hear the stereo mixes on such a wide soundstage. Because the Beatles don’t use a lot of instrumentation on their earlier records, it’s a lot easier to hear imperfections in the performance. Hearing small tuning impurities during “Getting Better” on Sgt. Pepper was driving me crazy: the piano is slightly detuned from the guitars and the pitchyness of the backing vocals throughout. It’s not that I haven’t heard it before, but the increased soundstage just exacerbated the issue by allowing each voicing to have more “room” to stand out. It’s an interesting phenomenon. In a strange way, it makes me appreciate the music even more; hearing and knowing it's flesh and blood behind the music and not processed digitalized perfection.
I will say classical and movie/game scores sound phenomenal on the Empyrean II. If you listen to music that has a lot going on, a lot of instrumentation, or a wide frequency range, you should be quite satisfied with the Empyrean II performance. Also, due to the nature of the outside design on the ear cup, I was surprised at how much they prevented leakage. Like the original Empyreans, there's not nearly as much sound leakage as I would expect from an open-back headphone. 


Comparisons: Empyrean vs. Elite vs. Empyrean II

Empyrean II assembly
The Empyrean headphones are already great at bringing out elements that get lost and covered up in smaller or tighter soundstages. In my earlier review of the Meze Empyrean, I called them a work of art and a true end-game headphone - and that still holds true today despite the Elite. Priced at $2,999, the Meze Empyrean is still among the top-tiered audiophile high-end headphones on the market today. It’s an immaculately crafted work of art that also just happens to sound amazing. The headphones are a delight to wear for long listening sessions; the weight and distribution are just right. Sonically, the Empyrean is nothing short of an endgame headphone for people who love bass. I highly recommend supplementing them with a Silver Dragon cable to balance out the EQ curve of the stock cable and the warmer tonality of the headphones. It will really help the Empyrean become more transparent.

At the end of the day, The Meze Empyrean is an impressive piece of equipment. My favorite quality of these headphones is the soundstage. I’m still picking up aspects of songs that I know like the back of my hand and hearing new things through them. That to me is part of the fun of being an audiophile: rediscovering old music and breathing new life into these songs day after day. It never gets old. The tuning of the Empyrean is varied enough to appease most listeners but they are definitely on the warm side of the sound signature spectrum.
The Elite fixes what those people didn't like in the Empyrean. They provide more detail, more clarity, and definition across the board. More. The Elite adds more perceived energy to your music due to the re-tuning and changes to the driver. It will appeal to more analytical and forward-sounding signature lovers, but I still wouldn't classify the Elite as a forward or analytical headphone. It still retains enough low-end and warmth from the isodynamic driver array to be one of the most versatile reference pair of headphones on the market. To boot, the Elite driver is much more efficient to drive than the Empyrean, so if you're without a dedicated headphone amplifier then the Elite would be the better option. Another notable feature that differentiates the Elite are the thinner ear pads. This results in a different air pressure inside the ear cup than the Empyrean, ultimately changing the sound and inner acoustics. Like the shape of the ear cup design, it gets you closer to the music. It's a small change that results in a big improvement in sound. All these upgrades go a long way to making sure the Elite headphone is not just a pretty new paint job. 
The Elite still reigns as the flagship of Meze Audio's lineup of headphones, but man does the Empyrean II sound awesome. The differentiator here is that the Empyrean II has much more control over the frequency spectrum and comes down to the "precision" of sound. The Elite Flagship still has a larger presentation with more definition, but the Empyrean II really helps to bring out the dynamics of flagship-level sound at both high and low volumes. What really impressed me was how expressive the Empyrean II was at low listening volumes and still being able to deliver meaningful performances.

It's a night and day difference between the second-generation Empyrean and the first. I can actually completely understand why they would be officially retiring the OG Empyrean. Better dynamics, better clarity and transparency, just - better. Look, we've come a long way since 2019 and back then the Empyrean was ground-breaking soundstage and emotive sound in one crazy good-looking headphone. The Empyrean II is what years of sonic improvements and technological advancements can do to an already stellar headphone. It was a good run OG Empyrean, and we solute you. 
Meze Elite with the KANN Max DAP
Meze Elite Headphones with KANN Max DAP

Empyrean 2.0 - Better In Every Way

MEZE X RINARO - Empyrean II emerges as the fruitful collaboration of two passionate companies that set out to explore uncharted territories. Meze Audio's engineering team has masterfully harnessed the power of Rinaro’s Isodynamic Hybrid Array Driver to reach a new world of sound.

SONIC MASTERY REIMAGINED - The result of years of research and development, Empyrean II lets you experience more of what you love: more clarity, more depth, more fun. Meze's goal was to enhance the headphones’ ability to reproduce fine details and achieve a more neutral sound signature, all the while preserving the original “easy to listen to” character. Using ingenious tuning methods, they revealed new possibilities in terms of resolution and detail retrieval, achieving a cleaner and more accurate representation of audio. The reliability and resistance of the membrane inside the driver was also improved, ensuring exceptional performance even in challenging acoustic environments.

ARCHITECTURE OF THE ISODYNAMIC HYBRID ARRAY DRIVER© - The Isodynamic Hybrid Array Driver combines individual switchback and spiral shaped voice coils in one driver, allowing sound to be targeted with more accuracy around the natural form of the ear. Patented in U.S., EU and China
ACCURATE REPRODUCTION: Total harmonic distortion (THD) measures under 0.1% in the whole frequency range
LIGHTWEIGHT: Reduced driver weight designed to create a headphone that offers prolonged listening sessions
ERGONOMIC SHAPE: Ergonomically shaped driver structure with an increased active area
ULTRA-HIGH-RESOLUTION AUDIO: Upper-frequency limit of audio reproduction is 110,000 Hz
[MZ3] HYBRID MAGNET ARRAY: Symmetrically placed on each side of the diaphragm, the neodymium magnets are specifically arranged into a Hybrid Array to create the efficient Isodynamic magnetic field required for a uniform activation across the whole diaphragm surface.
RINARO ISOPLANAR® DIAPHRAGM: Weighing only 0.16 g while having 4650 mm2 of active area.
[MZ3] FRAME: Fiberglass infused ABS.
ISOPLANAR® DIAPHRAGM MATERIAL: The switchback coil is more efficient at reproducing lower frequencies and is positioned in the upper part of the driver. The spiral coil is more efficient at reproducing middle-high frequencies and is positioned directly over the ear canal enabling more direct sound waves to enter the ear without any time delays.
ISOMAGNETIC® EARCUP TO EARPAD COUPLING TECHNOLOGY: Rinaro’s Isomagnetic® coupling technology makes switching earpads a breeze. It utilizes the demagnetizing field generated by the driver to secure the earcup in place, while simultaneously redirecting the magnetic field back into the driver, thereby enhancing efficiency.
Meze Empyrean II contents
YOUR SOUND, YOUR CHOICE: Elevate your listening experience to new heights – Empyrean II comes with two sets of earpads included, allowing the ultimate sound customization. Switch between our Duo and Angled earpads for an auditory journey that is entirely your own.
  • Duo Earpads: Our all-new Duo earpads are specifically tailored to match Empyrean II. Crafted from a precise blend of premium leather and Alcantara, the Duo Earpads introduce a contemporary dimension to the signature sound profile of Empyrean II. With leather forming the base half and Alcantara covering the rest, these earpads deliver a harmonious tonal balance that resonates across all music genres. We researched and tested various material ratios to achieve the best there is to offer. The outcome is a flawless fusion: well-sustained bass frequencies owed to the leather, with beautiful refinement and spatiality from Alcantara.
  • Angled Alcantara Earpads: Made of soft foam coated with Alcantara, with a fine protective mesh on the grill, the angled earpads excel at rendering intricate details and nuances in your recordings. The angled shape creates more space inside the earpad, which translates to an airier sound signature, with cleaner bass and improved presence in the mid-range frequency. Paired with Empyrean II, they create a detailed, airy and accurate listening experience, for the classic audiophile.

UNBOUNDED COMFORT: With Empyrean II, your music takes center stage. Following our highest standard for comfort, with a purpose-built structure that minimizes weight and pressure, this headphone instantly adapts to the shape of your head. This highly acclaimed synergy of ergonomics and premium materials guarantees more than just exceptional sound – it allows you to enjoy uninterrupted hours of music, without any discomfort.

FULLY SERVICEABLE: Meze Audio believes in creating products that last. Empyrean II is no different: every part of the headphone chassis can be disassembled and serviced with ease, if ever needed.

Dragon Cables

For my testing setup, I paired the Empyrean II with the new KANN Ultra DAP and a Black Dragon Premium Cable. While the Silver Dragon Premium Cable was our definite go-to cable for the original Empyrean as well as the Elite, we find that the UP-OCC copper in the Black Dragon really hones the warmth in the headphone while still allowing the clarity in the mids and highs to shine through. The Black Dragon accentuates the control of the overall tuning of the headphone, putting a chef's kiss on an already outstanding sound. 

If you're looking for a more analytical sound, however, you can always check out the Silver Dragon Premium Cable for Meze Audio as an option to bring out more top-end sizzle and soundstage. The Silver pairs exceptionally well with the original Empyrean and the Elites to help tighten up the low end resolution in particular. The Empyrean II already has some great definition in the lower frequencies, but would certainly make a great option for those looking for a more analytical presentation. 
Empyrean II with the KANN Ultra DAP
Materials matter, and our cables bring out the very best in your music. If you want a more analytical sound, then check out our Silver Dragon line. If you prefer a warm and smooth presentation, check out our Black Dragon line. We make tons of custom cable solutions here at Moon Audio with nearly every connection option available. If you have any questions feel free to Contact Us and we'll be more than happy to help!
Generally, stock audio cables are manufactured with subpar materials, metals with impurities, poor geometries, and an overabundance of layers to make them look and feel like a fire hose. Inconsistency and lack of quality control in stock cables can lead to poor sound quality and a veiled sound vs. what the musician intended for you to hear and feel from the music. Dragon cables are handcrafted with the highest standards and made to order according to your specific needs. At Moon Audio, we create a custom cable for you using the highest quality UP-OCC silver or copper conductors that can be manufactured. UP-OCC metals are void of impurities and are optimized for signal transfer and sound quality. We have one of the largest collections of audio and headphone connection options available online and we create limitless audio cable options depending on your specific gear and needs.

Why Dragon Cables?
You’ve heard the saying that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link, right? Well, the same applies to your brand-new audiophile-grade headphone or other audio components. The weakest link, in this case, is your stock cable or the cheap interconnects the manufacturer threw in the box just to get you up and running. Why is the cable always an afterthought, when it’s just as important as the rest of your system? At Moon Audio, we use the best raw materials in our cables to unveil your music. We believe the materials matter and your audio cables should have the same care and craftsmanship that manufacturers put into their audio components and headphones. Audio cables are ultimately the connection to your music. The fact remains that cabling is often considered the last priority to that of the main product and a means to cut down the overall production costs. It’s as simple as that.


The Empyrean II is a better headphone in every way. Much more controlled sound across the board that translates to a refined listening experience compared to the original. If the original Empyrean was considered a true-end-game sound back then, then the Empyrean is just [mind-explosion motion]. The Empyrean II shows us what sonic improvements and technological advancements can to to an already stellar-sounding headphone, but such is the case with product generations. In this case the difference is stark - the Empyrean II leans much towards the tuning of the Flagship Elite - with more detail, clarity, transparency in the mids, but has much more refined low-end. Control across the frequency spectrum is the theme here. The Empyrean II is a much more reference-friendly sound now, and will pair well with most genres, but I liked it especially for Classical, Jazz, and soundtracks since it still maintains that awesome, wide soundstage. Rock and quieter singer-songwriter, acoustic music sounded lovely too with great dynamics at low volumes. The Elite is still the flagship headphone with a much larger and more mature presentation, but you can't deny when something just sounds good. 
We thank the original Empyrean for its service, but it's time to retire it for good. Meze Audio has hit yet another home run with the Empyrean II, and it sounds absolutely amazing. 

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What's in the Box

Meze Empyrean II Case
-Meze Audio Empyrean II Headphones
-Angled Alcantara Ear Pads (Duo comes attached to headphones)
-Meze Audio Premium Silver-Plated or Copper PCUHD Cable 
-Warranty Information
-Hard Shell ABS Briefcase/Storage w/ Leather Handle

Connector Options: 2.5mm, 3.5mm (1/8in), 4.4mm, 6.3mm (1/4in), or 4-pin XLR


Original Empyrean Headphone Specs

Technical Features
Driver Type: Rinaro Isodynamic Hybrid Array
Operating Principle: Open
Ear Coupling: Circumaural
Weight: ≈430 g
Color: Black or Copper

Frequency response: 4 - 110,000 Hz
Impedance: 31,6 Ω
Total Harmonic Distortion (THD): >0.1%
Nominal SPL: 100 dB (1 mW/1kHz)
Maximum SPL: >130 dB

MZ3 Driver
Geometrical shape: Ovoid
Size: 102 mm x 73 mm
Weight: 82 g
Casing: Fiberglass Infused ABS
Diaphragm Type: Rinaro ISOPLANAR®
Active area: 4650 mm²
Weight: 0,16 g
Acoustic mass: 10,7 kg/m4
Lower frequency limit: 4 Hz
Upper-frequency limit: 110.000 Hz
Magnet Array Type: Isodynamic
Size: 75 mm x 49 mm
Magnetic Flux: 0,35 T

Empyrean II Headphone Specs

Technical Features
Driver Type: Rinaro Isodynamic Hybrid Array Driver
Operating Principle: Open
Ear Coupling: Circumaural
Weight: 385g (without earpads)

Frequency Response: 8 – 110,000 Hz
Impedance: 32 Ω
Total Harmonic Distortion: <%0.5 (in the whole frequency range)
Sensitivity: 105 dB SPL @ 1 V, 1 kHz
Maximum SPL: >130 dB

MZ3 Driver
Geometrical Shape: Ovoid
Size: 102 mm x 73 mm
Weight: 82g
Casing: Fiberglass infused ABS
Type: Rinaro Isoplanar®
Active Area: 4650 mm2
Weight: 0.16 g
Acoustic Mass: 10.7 kg/m4
Lower Frequency Limit: 8 Hz
Upper Frequency Limit: 110,000 Hz
Array Type: Isodynamic
Size: 75 mm x 49 mm
Magnetic Flux: 0.35 T