Noble Audio USA
Disclaimer: I do not own a pair of Noble Savant II personally, and am basing this review on the demo unit I tested at Stereo Singapore. I was not requested in any way to write this review
Noble audio released many great iems in the past, some of which continues to hold a high position despite many new competitors stepping up their game. I’ll be honest. I got into the high-end of hi-fi mainly when I saw the Wizard designs; the designs speak as loud as the music. That and how great the K10 was, and still is.
The Savant straddled a sweet spot in the past, appearing in the mid-tier pack and offering a good technical performance for its price point with its dual BA setup.
When the Savant II was released in Singapore, I was immediately intrigued. The improvements were supposedly a better treble control and a greater bass emphasis over the Savant. This definitely appeared interesting, as running a two BA per side setup means that there definitely are going to be restrictions. Well, I largely didn’t expect what was coming.
The drawbacks of a balanced armature bass is still present, showing up in the lack of depth. However it is better detailed in the lower end with the mid-bass packing the more emphasis as the sub-bass.
The bass had a wide space, gently filling up the lower-end horizontally, with the mid-bass spilling over into the mids a little. I did kind of expect this with the elevated mid-bass, so no surprise there.
I was caught off-guard. Perhaps because the improvements didn’t mention an improve in mids, on top of the Savant’s already great mids, I didn’t expect much if any changes here.
And boy was I surprised. An clear and powerful upper-mid lift brings out energy in vocals and instruments easily. At the same time it helps draw emphasis away from the lower mids which had a weaker performance due to the bass bleed.
My main issue would be the slightly recessed and hollow lower-mids, though I was simply too busy enjoying the upper-mids to take much notice of this.
Clean, smooth, balanced and full-bodied. Of the many BA iems I’ve tried (and I’ve tried many), the Savant II would be one of those I prefer when it comes to treble performance. It simply gets it right, with moderate extension and not turning harsh at any point.
An improvement? Definitely. Surprised? Well……… maybe.
Savant II definitely is a noticeable improvement over the Savant. While many other companies like to slap on a “Pro” or v2 and completely alter an iem’s sound signature with a boosted bass and treble, Noble has kept the Savant II to its roots and improved its core technicalities.
The issue I have? Other than the recessed lower mids and bleeding, it would be probably the price. It now sits at an awkward upper-mid tier. Too costly to compare with the entry tiers and lacking the firepower to go against totls.
But if you just wish to know if it is a better Savant, my opinion will be a yes.
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