The original Ultrasone Edition 15 was released back in 2018 as an open back model, and now the Ultrasone Edition 15 Veritas arrives as a closed back version, which means that some elements are likely to be a bit different this time around.
We’re going to break these all down for you and more right...now.
Let’s talk headphones
What’s in the Box?
The presentation of the box aims for an amount of class and luxury that you would expect from a high end brand product at this price range, but is also extremely simple.
In the middle of the box you have your headphones themselves, flanked on either side by your two familiar blue drawstring Ultrasone bags. Each of these contains a litz wire detachable cable, one with a 3.5mm connection, the other a quarter inch end.
Design and Fit
Unlike some of the other more consumer level products offered by Ultrasone, the Edition 15 and the Veritas version are both targeted exclusively toward serious self professed audiophiles, and the materials here are intended to reflect that.
The earcups are made from American cherry wood and the exterior covers are aluminum. In the original edition 15, this was a stainless steel grill, while here for the closed-back it's just a solid plate with an engraved design on the front of it. The earpads are also a little different in the Veritas, going from velour to a very luxurious feeling Merino leather and they are attached to the headphone via magnet
Not only are these materials good looking, but they are also sustainably made in Bavaria, an area of great pride for Ultrasone. From a solar-powered factory to locally sourced materials and even a fleet of electric cars, you can feel good when you hold these in your hands and know that they come from a company that wants to give you a great product, all while leaving a smaller footprint.
At first, the shape of the earcups seems a little uninviting, as it's pretty elongated, but upon wearing they were really comfortable, thanks mostly to the leather earpads. One thing to note is they are really big, and there’s nothing inconspicuous about wearing them.
They are also a little heavier than typical entries in the edition line, weighing in at 338g, but they did not feel heavy at all, even after long periods of use.
You may want to see our unboxing and video review as well.
Technology and Drivers
Because this is an Ultrasone headphone that means that it features their proprietary S Logic Plus technology. If you’re familiar with the brand or have seen our reviews of other products, then you probably know how it works, and that I am a huge fan of this concept.
Essentially, S Logic uses drivers that are placed in a decentralized position instead of directly into your other ears like most headphones. This allows soundwaves to be bounced and reflected against the outer layer of your ears at different angles to give you more spatial accuracy, and mimic the way that we hear and process sound in real life. It’s a neat feature that makes it sound more like you’re listening to speakers at a fixed distance instead of traditional headphones.
While this is a standard Ultrasone feature, the big innovation introduced by the original Edition 15 was the GTC driver technology - which can also be found in the Veritas. GTC stands for gold titanium compound, which means that it combines a gold foil membrane with titanium done to produce the entirety of the frequency spectrum with ultra-high fidelity and copious amounts of detail.
These also feature Ultra-low Emission MU metal shielding, which protects the listener from magnetic field emissions that occur when your headphones are converting between electronic and analog signals. These two technologies are steps that show Ultrasone going above and beyond to protect your hearing, which is especially valuable and essential in a model that is this high end.
Output and Such
Speaking of detail, the frequency response you’ll get in both versions of the edition 15 is a generous 5 Hz to 48 kHz, ensuring a very wide sonic palette. As far as the output impedance, these are a pretty modest 40 ohms, so they are right in that range where they could be decently powered right from a phone or computer without an amp.
However, this combined with the 96 db sensitivity means that for the best quality and volume, you are almost certainly going to want an amp to get the most out of these. I highly recommend the Ultrasone Panther, which I’ve used on here pretty often for testing. It is obviously also an Ultrasone product and pairs really well with any of their headphones but is also just a great all around amp I’ve used with great results on lots of different headphones.
When it comes to soundstage here, the open back is obviously going to have the advantage. The standard edition 15 grants all of the large spaciousness and expansive quality that you would expect from an open back design that also is also using S Logic Plus to bounce those sound waves around different parts of your ears. This is combined with an extremely precise image that makes it easy to locate your instruments and sources within the large palette available to you.
The closed-back of the Veritas offers a comparable experience, and the imaging and layering retain the good balance of precision with separation/distinction of parts. The biggest difference is a more vertically linear stage that loses some of the width that the open back model has - which is to be expected. Overall, the closed-back perhaps provides for an even greater amount of immersion due to the seal and the fact that the stage retains most of its quality here.
As far as sound quality, the low end has a great combination of smoothness and impact, with a nice subtle sub-bass presence that gives a nice lift to all your bass frequencies. There’s a clarity and depth that creates a good dynamic quality without being overbearing. In something like Buenos Aires by Nathy Peluso, the chilled out neo funk beat and slap bass has a pulsing undulation that gives the track drive and some lift, but never tips into boominess.
As was the case with the first edition 15, the mids are the real star of the show here, with clarity and detail that really makes its case for why you might choose these over another unit. Vocals and acoustic or rhythm instruments are brought forward to accentuate nuances and deliver a full well rounded texture. If you’re looking to get the most resolution out of vocal performances look no further.
Listening to some classic salsa with these, which features no kick drum, is a wealth of detail and fidelity. In Usame by Marc Anthony, his bell-like tenor vocal can be heard with all of its dramatic breaths and articulations, and the lushness of the swoony mix of pianos horns and percussion makes for an extremely satisfying and immersive listen.
An area that is always going to have a mix of opinions with an Ultrasone is the high-end frequencies. Here they have a smoothness and accuracy but lack some of the lighter/airer quality of their open back counterparts. Highs definitely have an emphasis on crispness and sharpness here, which does wade into a bit of harshness and sibilance as you go closer to the extremes, which should be noted. If this has been something that you enjoy about Ultrasone headphones, you’ll certainly be happy with these, but it may not work for everyone here.
As an update of an already great product, the edition 15 veritas is a quality companion that retains the quality of the original, while supporting enough differences to warrant adding it to the collection of any edition line completionists. These will be great for you if
- you like simple design with quality materials
- you’re a fan of s logic plus technology and Mu metal shielding
- you prioritize clear and immaculate mid range
These might not be for you if
- you don’t want a closed back version
- you don’t like Ultrasone’s typical high end tuning
You can order Ultrasone Edition 15 Veritas at Audio46.