Focal Bathys Firmware Updates

Dear Focal Bathys Owners,

I wonder how many of you have encountered firmware update issues with your Focal Bathys. If you have, please comment below on the issue, what support you received from Focal/Naim and if the issue still persists.

My case involves updating the firmware on the Focal Bathys. They came with v 1.1.0 and at the time of writing (I believe) the most recent version is (circa 1.5.7). I’ve tried updating the headphones via two different devices, but each time despite showing 100% complete, the update hangs and fails. The version remains unchanged. Support told me that there have been too many intermediary updates between my present version and the latest version, so the update fails. The solution is to take the headphones into the dealer. (Where I imagine they will be shipped to Focal for some sort of manual firmware update.)

It’s like ascending a staircase, it’s fine if you take it one or two steps at a time, but can’t manage more than that. I happened upon a post by another owner reporting a problematic firmware update from v1.37 to v1.42 – it updated but it stalled during the process. This update process strikes me as flaky. It also means that you have to keep your headphones within a few releases of the latest firmware lest they will fall too far behind. Otherwise, it means a trip to the dealer.

There is also no way to downgrade the firmware. So, owning the headphones means accepting an open-ended trust in the ability of the software team to release robust software.

On present evidence, it’s anything but, in my opinion. What a position!

I wonder why the correct intermediate updates can’t be provided directly to you?

It isn’t deliberately withholding intermediate updates, it’s simply that the Bathys firmware update process falls flat on its face. I happened upon another user’s account whereby updating firmware version 1.3x to 1.4x resulted in the process stalling. It did work, but the on-screen process stalled. It’s just shoddy implementation. Then there are others complaining that updates have botched functionality like volume control. There also isn’t the ability to downgrade. This level of software quality control is just not acceptable for a premium product.

How frustrating.

I like my two wired Focal headphones and have been considering the Bathys for out and about and holidays, but hearing about the volume control increments problem and now this is not very encouraging…

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