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The Massdrop x Noble X marked our first collaboration with Noble and an accessible entry point into the Noble product line. We’ve sold ~2,000 units in less than a year and are still going strong. The X was my first custom product and launch from scratch, it means a lot to me that so many of the members here are enjoying them.
Of course…I also dreamt of the day that we would be able to offer an entry into Noble’s statement and highest-end products. :)
If you had wanted to try the #1 rated IEM for the past couple of years but missed them, wonder about the clarity and resolution that comes from having 10 drivers in each ear, or if the previous $1,650 pricetag was too high…we have been able to bring the K10 back and offer another chance at purchasing them.
Pretty quickly, we decided not to request any changes to the name or the sound with this collaboration. This is the original Kaiser 10. (We were happy to add some black, however.)
Massdrop strives to offer great performance and great value, to help grow the community and promote the best audiophile products. Noble understands this mission and has been a great partner we’re excited to continue working with.
I think the $900 price tag is still too high
In the context of the original price being $1650, I think you should cut them some slack.
I think for a previous-generation flagship this is priced well. $900 vs $1400 for JH Roxanne 2 on Clearance is quite a deal actually. Haven't seen other flagships or previous flagships go on higher sales or lower prices than $900.
At least at $900 I can afford to go into TOTL IEM with this and indulge myself. Though if this were closer to $800 I wouldn't have to feel as much guilt towards my wallet this coming Friday LOL
Yea but it isn’t the encore one which is way better
I was being sarcastic. For these it’s a great price. I’m just not the person to spend that much on IEMs, nor am I the person who understands why people spend that much on IEMs.
He is high, cut him some slack. 😄
I meant to say TOTL bracket, as this was, at one point, the flagship from Noble :) And from all the reviews and head-fi threads I've read, Encore might be better, but not way better. Some people even prefers K10/K10u to Encore. So it's really YMMV :)
Trust me i tried it and it's a vast improvement serious. That's what i think anyway
haha I really want to! but my wallet can't :P
Lol stax burnt through mine so no luck here
You like the Stax ? Zeos swears by them, though i peronally would probably get more use out of a solid pair of IEMs. (I commute and the GF isnt into listening to my open backed sound bleed)
Maybe if I get dumped lol
Why do people buy really expensive IEMs? I never understood that. Because if I am spending $500+ on IEMs, personally I don't want to wear them out for fear of loosing them or accidentally breaking them, and if I am at home I don't want to use IEMs, I'm going to use headphones which are more comfortable and will usually sound much better for the price. I have no problems spending over $500 for headphones, but $300 is where I draw the line on IEMs.
i have a pair of TOTL flagship $1300 campfire vegas. I wear them now as dailies, as any other iem i would wear. they are a liquid metal alloy housing and quite durable. some of the campfire line is not alloy housing and is more prone to scratching. I've never owned a pair of nobles, but i assume i would do the same if i got these. I'm a big collector, i have over 100 pairs of phones and cans, but id never buy something i didn't intend to use- i'm an enthusiast not a hoarder. while i respect your view, mine is different. also, im pretty sure my renters insurance covers all my gear. i was stuck in midfi hell 150-300$ range for 15 years and finally broke out this year realizing i had a $10k+ collection of low-midfi gear. there is a noticeable difference on the high end gear, where you can actually get almost everything you want in a 'phone, compared to all the midfi sacrifices.
Quality IEMs shouldn't be breaking under normal use, I'm the kind of person who doesn't lose or break things often either (especially if it's more valuable than my phone haha)
I'm also a commuter and fairly frequent traveler and overears generally either bleed too much sound or are too bulky for me to carry comfortably.
I own quite a few pairs of quality headphones already. (As well as a couple decent IEMs though nothing over 300$) was thinking of taking the dive on these, just because my IEMs get more playtime than my phones and the cost per driver on these is pretty insane (2 in the 250$ X vs 10 for 899!)
That or ill buy a laptop haha
i've never heard the nobles so i cant make a comparison for you. If you can point me towards a dealer in nyc i can go out and A/B this weekend. I'm interested in another flagship pair, on the neutral/airy side so it's worth my time.
the vega's are incredible detail retrieval, great timbre and tonality, great staging, and the best bass i've ever heard in an iem (punch, depth, clarity, and speed). they are much bass heavier than andromedas (seen charts, never heard them). they are bass heavier than neutral, and they have a tone that reminds me of high end planars like LCDx. they are like wearing LCD's in an iem format and i LOVE them, only wish they had a ciem option. I get frisson (skingasms) with them listening to all kinds of stuff.
yeah, those are actually what I had been eyeing prior to seeing this drop. Seems like a signature I would enjoy on an iem and your not the first to make that comparison to me.
Zeos was the very resin I checked them out lol
Maybe m300 by monopice? The isines are not impressive to me probabl due to the roll off in highs
I was under whelmed after trying the m300 in person. I've found my fostex thx00 to be my go-to lately as it's a lot of fun, while giving me enough of a soundstage to do a bit of gaming. (One of the best among closed back cans that I've found yet)
My apartment is kinda small and I share the space so open back is kinda tough to pull off
Serious sell me I’ll buy it
aww.. I just paid for tuition and low in $$, but I'm super interested.. hopefully this drop goes on for ~20 days T_T
24 days left as of today.
Until 350 units are sold, anyway
I currently have SE846 and love the bass, but prefer more detail, clarity, and brightness overall. I have HD 800 S I use at home, and love 'em. Would the Vega be a good fit for me? I was considering these K10U's, but then some people suggested the Katana or CA Andromeda would be better for my V-shaped taste. But now seeing the Vega, I wonder if it's the route to go?
i cant comment on the katana or the andro, havent heard them, and i bought my vega blind, without demoing it. the vega matches the immaculate detail retrieval *and* bass heavy tone, i found them superior to the 846's and the ie800. build quality is MUCH higher than the shures and senns too. they are a solid piece of metal made out of some kind of fancy alloy, with a hard plastic tip bit. im told the andro has a little more sparkle on the top and a wider sound stage, but it has notably less bass. also, the vega is an alloy frame, and the andro is anodized aluminum and more prone to scratches. there are no campfire dealers in nyc, so i never had an opportunity to a/b the vega/andro. i chose them after discussions with several redditors who had similar collections to mine, and a long set of conversations with the campfire staff. there is a great threat comparing them on SBAF. the andromeda is supposed to be much more neutral, and the vega more "fun" but its fun while still maintaining full audiophile cred. if you prefer v shaped, vega might be a great option.
my group of friends say Andromeda > Katana > K10 > Vega, though I'd bet Andromeda and Katana are rather close.. the Vega has been described as being nothing but bass and a treble peak lol
Regarding Andromeda vs Vega, different sound signatures so it's not really a matter of which one is "better".
I have owned both the Andromeda and Vega and prefer the Vega.
Andromeda & Katana are more on the neutral side. K10 & Vega are way more on the fun side. I own both custom K10's and Vegas, and the vegas are no slouches. Your friends who have heard the vegas may not have matched them with a good source, or may not have spent enough time with them. They're a basshead's dream iem.
what i get from your comment is that you own none of these phones, but your friends may or may not, but they have opinions, so third party opinions, very helpful.
several reports of driver failure on first batch m300 monoprice already
where u getting these sources from
I have a few sets of 1k+ IEMs. I don't mind wearing them out - I just look after them like any other expensive 'carry' I take out of the house (camera, phone, iPad etc).
I personally use them at home quite a lot as well. When just lounging around, especially sitting up in bed, I find IEMs much more comfortable and easy to manage. For me, IEMs are probably my go to for all situations with 'cans' only being used when I actually set aside time to sit at the amplifier and listen.
Revised my comment because if you werent following the thread you would think i was talking about the k10s, i wasn,t i was talking about the new monoprice m300 iSine clones. In addition to comments on headfi and reddit, several people people i know in another headphones group also had issues.
When the 1060 came out it had major problems too, in my particular pair, over the span of a week, both cups had electrical cutouts, both cups cracked, and the headband fell out on my first batch gen one m1060s, so im quite frankly not super surprised.
Oh i thought you mean the noble audio ones, I apologize then.
I follow JH audio and Noble audio alot and only heard of driver failure like once or twice on the headfi forums. No clue about m300's dou
I guess, but I can’t believe anyone would do this.
But the liquid carbon was designed as an IEM amp?
I don’t care if it was, I just don’t understand why people would do this. But hey that might just be me.
Same reason why people upgrade from the regular wires to silver wires.
But at least a mixamp is not as dumb as that.
No one talks like that to Will....
I'm not an audio person at all, so why is using an amp a bad thing?
I do because of TMJ issues with over ears. Even slight pressure gives me a lot of pain
It's not bad. It's mildly sub-optimal in a couple ways:
1) an advantage IEMs have over full sized headphones (especially open backs) is portability; restricting their use to an amp removes that, with some people naturally reasoning you might as well be using headphones
2) its almost certainly overkill in terms of power output
Of course the retort to both is, who cares, if it's a combination that works for you, go for it
So I spent honestly 4 hours today doing back to back to back listening of the Andromeda, Vega, K10, Encore, Katana, U6,U8,U12 and a few others. Same 3 songs over and over and over. To be honest I had a blast. I think rating them is 100% a personal choice. Even other people around me liked different stuff than I liked. But my rating is like this:
Katana-Vega-U8-Encore-K10-Andromeda or close to that. It gets soo hard to tell them apart even going back and forth. Hell even the Sage sounds pretty good. A lot better than the Noble X. But as far as Vega vs Andromeda it was not even close for me, I loved the Vega. And its super small and fits really well.
I was using a Fiio X5 Gen 3 with the same 3 FLAC songs. Comply tips mostly. Liked them better than the Campfire ones but they are a close 2nd. Dont like the red silicone Noble ones that much. For the U12 and U8 I really couldn't tell them apart other than the U8 had a bit more bass and I preferred it.
The K10 and the Encore sound almost indistinguishable to me as well. But lean for Encore.
Best I heard all day was the 3600.00 A64 Zita or whatever they are called. Wow they sound good. Very smooth.
My two cents anyway.
I ended up purchasing a used Vega today - I'll get it Tuesday. Glad to hear you liked it a lot. My hope is that it's a fun IEM moreso than analytical (I have HD 800 S for that). I still would like a lot of detail, but great bass and treble are my main concerns. Do you think I'll be satisfied? (Coming from an SE846).
Just curious about your thoughts on the U6. I've heard the U12, but was wondering how different the U6 would be in terms of signature and technicalities. They seem to have the same 3way crossover and driver configuration (extra driver per crossover on the U12).
I loved the Vega, and if you like bass then you will love them. I couldn't believe how amazing they sounded with a single dynamic driver. I went to campfire fully expecting to love the andromeda and I did, but they said hey listen to this one as well and see how it compares to you. They said some people like it more, I was like ehh ok. But after listening for about 15 minutes I was blown away. Never expected to like the Vega, little own like it more than the andromeda. Its got a lot of bass, but its not over powering at all, and the vocals and highs still sounds crystal clear. I think you will like it, but having said that, we are all different it seems.
So I had to explain this exact question to my wife. Here is how I saw it. So the U6 are really good, I loved the sound. But can I tell the difference between really good and great? So I listened to the U12 and yeah, I could tell, the U12 sounded great. So I wanted to know where I could tell the difference. So moved down the line, U10, U8 and back to U6. And for me, important part is for me, the difference between the U6 and the U8 is where I could tell the jump from really good to great. And I think, again for me, that the U8 stood out because I really like bass. If I was going to buy a 64 today, and I am going back today, for the price points and how I liked them I would get the A8. But the U6 was soo close and is still really really good to me. And I am not a total bass head, like I said above I love the Katana and people say the Encore has more bass than the Katana and the Katana is more reference. My two cents.
Yeah, versatility would have been the better word. Portability comes in under that.
The Tias? i'd love to audition them.
the Tia were pretty dang amazing, I would say they were one of the best there. The way they flow from heavy bass to vocals and back again was sooo smooth. They were interesting for sure, not a normal IEM sound. Where they worth 3600.00? Not to me, but they sounded amazing. They sounded a lot better than the U12, and once you are at the U12 and something is noticeably better its unusual.
Interesting thing, they raffled off a set of Tia on Saturday. You had to be there to win. There was only about 20-25 people there when they raffled them off. I lost. Girl next to me won them.
Any plans to do another drop in the future? I was too late on joining the last one. Thanks!
Any chance this drop will arrive a few days early? I have a 3 week long trip to Asia flying out December 10th... Would love to have these in business class with me.
Doubt it and the last bit of info was unnecessary
i got these cause the color scheme of the IEMs match perfectly with my Ferrari
Sarcasm cannot be understood here it seems
So what was the price? Can't see it now
Although the point I agree with, I don't think Vega is TOTL... definitely not.
it's top of THAT line. What would you say qualifies? Zeus? Fourtes? I'm not sure even I am thaat ready to drop 2.5-3k on iems.
Anyone who says Vega isn’t TOTL worthy doesn’t know iems
Anyone who says that thinks he knows something but he knows nothing.
I have owned and used multiple totl iems. I say that about the Vega with confidence.
Now it might not be your preferred sound signature but to say it isn’t totl material is ignorant.
I'm genuinely asking, as I'm ready to drop ~1500 I'm curious on all opinions as the vega is a major contender
Most users who AB Vega and Andro ended up preferring Andro. For a good reason.
interesting, the comfort factor seems to favor the vega. I often lay on my side as well, this caused issues for me with the nobles. Would you say the Andro experiences some of the same issues due to it's larger size?
Thoughts on the K10 vs the Andro?
As an owner of both Vega and Andro I can understand why some would prefer Andro over the Vega. That is in no way a reflection of the quality of the Vega. It is just preferring one sound signature over the other. I personally prefer the Vega over the Andro. They are complimentary if not equal.
My andro has the wider stage vs my K10. Mids are arguably better on the K10. As for comfort Vega blows the others away. But don't get it unless you absolutely love bass. I like to use different ones for different genres.
@Sloblo Have you considered the new empire ears models? The phantom and Legend X are getting great early reviews.
Their site seems to be down atm ~ I thought the LX debuts at $2500? that's a bit out of my price range.
LX is $2300. I was referring more to the Phantom. But their other models are supposed to be great as well.
If you get Vega, they said upgrade the cable is the cure. I don't know about that though. Vega bass seemed to be too prominent.
A pure silver cable could theoretically help if the Vegas bass bothers you.