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Earbuds & In-Ear Headphones

Meze Audio’s ALBA IEMs Promise Better Sound Quality At a More Affordable Price

At $159, the Meze Audio ALBA in-ear headphones include a convenient inline USB-C adapter to easily to connect to iPhone 15.

Woman wearing Meze Audio ALBA IEM

Founded in 2011, Romania-based Meze Audio has been engineering award-winning headphones and earphones that have received a lot of praise for their design and performance.

Born out of the ashes of the Cold War in Eastern Europe, Meze Audio has proven to be one of the greatest success stories of the Head-Fi Revolution. Continuing that trend, Meze Audio has announced the ALBA wired in-ear headphones, which join the higher-end ADVAR IEMs.

As its Romanian translation signifies, the ALBA is a ‘first light’ for those inspired by the world of elevated audio enjoyment.

Meze ALBA

Meze Audio ALBA IEMs

Designed as an entry-level product in Meze’s product line the ALBA in-ears are designed to deliver the quality that Meze is known that includes comfort, noise isolation, and audiophile performance.

ALBA is the bridge between the current in-ear market and Meze Audio’s best-in-class collection tuned with a neutral sound profile and an added touch of warmth for an immersive audio experience.

The ALBA uses a combination of zinc alloy and anodized aluminum parts, that provide resilience without detracting from its pearl appearance.

ALBA provides access to a wide range of music sources, including smartphones with USB-C connectivity, as well as those with a 3.5mm headphone socket – thanks to a cable with a gold-plated 3.5mm connector.

Meze Audio ALBA IEMs with adapter and cable
Meze Audio ALBA in-ear headphones and included accessories

The ALBA comes with a custom-made USB-C adapter, which features a built-in DAC/AMP, not only boosting the sound quality of your chosen source but also ensuring plug-n-play connectivity with iPhone 15.

ALBA incorporates a 10.8mm dynamic driver with a 15-25kHz frequency range. ALBA’s sound profile complements the stylish design. Packing a significant punch in a subtle, assured finish, the in-ears have a sound pressure level (SPL) of 109dB. Specially designed silicone ear tips are provided in four sizes (S, M, L, XL) to provide listener and portability.

From Product Manager Vlad Toca: “It was a combination of factors that brought ALBA into existence. Coming from a musical background, having maintained direct contact with our customers daily, and being an audiophile myself for the better part of a decade, really helped me understand the expectations for a complete and immersive listening experience,…Designed for those who dance to their own beat, for the curious and the free-spirited, ALBA comprises a perfectly accessible and qualitative introduction into the world of elevated audio enjoyment.

Meze ALBA vs. ADVAR

MEZE Audio ALBA In-Ears vs Advar IEM
ALBAADVAR
Price$159 (US)$699 (US)
Headphone TypeWired In-Ear MonitorWired In-Ear Monitor
MaterialsDiecast Zinc Alloy and Anodized AluminumInjection Molded Stainless Steel
Speaker DriverDynamic 10.8 mmDynamic 10.2 mm
Frequency Range15 Hz – 25 kHz10 Hz – 30 kHz
Impedance at 1kHz32 Ω 31 Ω
SPL (Sound Pressure Level) @ 1 kHz, 1 mW109 dB111 dB
Distortion<0.1% at 1kHz<1% @ 1 kHz, 1 V
Included Accessories2-pin (78mm) connectors with 3.5mm gold-plated jack termination
4 Pairs of silicone Ear Tips
Hard EVA Pouch
48″ Braided audio cable with two MMCX (Micro-miniature coaxial) connectors on one end and a straight 3.5mm plug on the other end
5 Pairs of Final Audio silicone ear tips
Cleaning tool
MMCX connector removal tool
Hard zippered case
Meze Audio ALBA IEMs with case

Initial Impressions

The ALBA marks Meze Audio’s entry into the lower-priced wired in-ear headphone category but it looks like the ALBA doesn’t cut corners. Keep in mind that the ALBA is not Bluetooth-compatible.

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This means that your smartphone or other source device has to be physically connected to the ALBA via the provided cable connection options.  If you are looking for a pair of wired in-ear headphones or in-ear monitors Meze is a brand to consider. 

Meze Audio ALBA IEM input
Meze Audio ALBA IEM side

Price & Availability

The Meze Audio ALBA earphones will be available for order from June 20, 2024 for $159 at mezeaudio.com. International pricing is set at €159 or £139.

The Meze Audio ADVAR is available for $699 at Amazon.

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