Massdrop x Noble X Universal IEM Earphone Quick Review
Thanks to Massdrop for the loaner.
Brief: Massdrop and Noble make a baby.
Price: US$250 or about £197
Specifications: Faceplates: Anodized aluminum in midnight blue, Drivers: 2 proprietary balanced armature drivers per side, Impedance: 30 ohms, Frequency response: 15 Hz – 20 kHz, Cable: 50 in (127 cm), detachable, with 2-pin configuration, Plug: ⅛ in (3.5 mm), gold-plated, Weight: 0.69 oz (19.5 g)
Accessories: Detachable cable with 2-pin connector & 3.5mm TRS plug, 2 pairs of single-flange silicone ear tips (M, L), 2 pairs of Noble foam ear tips (M, L), 1 pair of double-flange silicone ear tips (M), Cleaning tool, Carrying case, Noble Audio warranty.
Build Quality: It all seemed decently put together, the bits are of a good quality and the cable and such were all rather nice too.
Isolation: For a BA IEM they are rather shallow sitting and that means that they are relatively not so isolating. However these are still BA and thus they have no dynamic in them like with hybrids which require a vent. These are properly sealed and thus they beat pretty much every dynamic out there for isolation. Not just fine for bus or about and about but fine for flights or the Tube. Naturally that means even with no music playing you’ll need to use your eyes near traffic or get yourself killed.
Comfort/Fit: Aside from being rather shallow sitting with is a little peculiar if you’re used to normal BA things. That was it though, issue wise, a touch shallow but they fit me great and easily. I was also happy wearing them all day long, no comfort issues at all despite them being a little bit big.
Aesthetics: Nice. Tbh I’m not exactly drooling over them but they look nice enough, I like that blue and the Noble design is pleasant. So they look fine, nothing amazing but nice enough.
Sound: Good. They are a touch middy compared with most may be used to, what with their being all BA which seems like it’s been ages singe I’ve seen a multi driver that’s not a hybrid. BA bass is light, accurate, detailed and more inclined to punch than to bloom. Its depth is fine but can’t get all the way down. Same with the treble, it tails off as you go upward. Plenty detail but its subtle in its presentation. The mids though are where they are at their best. The mids are a little plain, not the most flavoured but highly naturalistic and realistic. Effortless and easy going. I kept going back to fantastically simple tracks with stellar vocals. Something so simple, easy and delicate to them if you amp them well. Oh and they do like all the power you can provide, particularly if from a cool amp. Not just benefit from but border line need, yet they were super easy to make loud out of anything. Contradictory a bit but oh well.
Value: Not the cheapest but certainly the cheapest Noble you can get.
Pro’s: Superb mid-range. Highly naturalistic presentation.
Con’s: Minimal drama and bombast. Will be too polite for some.