Some really cheap 1/8 adapters I've tried didn't always make good contact in the jack, so unless it was inserted just right, one channel wouldn't work, would cut out, or there would be some static or distorted sound.
If you don't plan to use an amp, the 30 Ohm version might be easier to drive from a cell phone or relatively weak source. I can't comment on how similar the two sound, but I do prefer using my 80 Ohm amped, rather than straight from a DAP.
It's best to contact Noble directly if you're unhappy with the cosmetics of your iems. Although Brannan and Dr. Moulton are quite active on Head-Fi, it's not really a good way for asking for customer support. I hope you'll be able to get things resolved. It's tough when laying out quite a bit of cash.
Lighting and backdrop are also major factors in how these iems appear in photos. Mine look very different in photos depending on the light conditions. You might want to ask Noble to send you some additional photos.
I didn't say I don't think silver wires won't affect the sound...but either copper, silver, combination, etc work fine for this purpose. As a personal preference, though, I don't like the extra bulkiness of 8 core wires, and they can look very cool, but I find them clunky to use.
More cores is just about more "coolness factor" and cost. The amount of current flowing through these wires is miniscule. In my experience, different cables can affect the sound, but not make a night and day difference like you see in some posts. The Noble stock cables are already good quality and comfortable to wear (you can cut off the memory wire if it bothers you). If you want bling, though, knock yourself out with some custom cables.