I just got my Hidition NT6 Pro's delivered to the US yesterday on 6/15/13 after being shipped out on the 11th. Four day shipping from Korea is not bad. I ordered them on 5/30/13, so the whole order only took two weeks to receive. However, it seemed so much longer given my impatience, the time required to research and decide on this CIEM, and the time to schedule and get my ear impressions made as well as to ship them to South Korea. The good news for US buyers is that I had no customs charges or shipment delays.
My initial thoughts are that they sound really great, but I am still trying to get my head wrapped around the sound signature. They make my TF10s sound like I am listening to a cheap mono AM radio. However, there are some oddities in a few songs that I am still trying to figure out. Most of the songs I have listened to sound great like I am listening to my Audeze LCD 2 v2 or a very expensive HIFI sound system. Yet a few other songs sound confused or just plain odd. Overall, at this early stage, I have no regrets or buyers remorse - I really love what I am hearing.
The most obvious oddity is the cliff in the bass. In a few songs it sounds as if the bass is crossed using a pair of $5000 hi end 18" subwoofers paired with a single mediocre 8" woofer for midbass. To be fair, this isn't often and I have not given them or my brain any time to burn in yet. The bass isn't as big as I expected or hoped, but I am mainly listening to my clip+ which is know for clarity, narrow sound stage, and a sharp drop off in sub base. Yet, I should say that the bass is more than awesome when it kicks in which gives the sound signature much of its richness beyond the clarity.
Forgetting the perceived hole in the midbass, everything is tight, transparent, precise, intimate, and coherent the rest of the way up. I have large Magneplanar's for my main speakers which is the closest comparison I can make. They sound very transparent, full sized, 3D, with superb resonance that you can feel in your bones. Although I understand why average_joe says that they are bright, they are not grating as I had feared. I think they are better described as full sized and extended. Instead of making everything sound like a sprinkler system, or symbols sounding like finger symbols played by a miniaturized person in another room - treble sounds full sized and natural.
As average_joe pointed out, they sound extraordinarily clear and coherent with a good sized 3D sound stage. The presentation is very up close and intimate with everything sounding proportional and on the same moderate sized stage.
My sources only include the iPhone 5 and iPod Classic with similar muddy and confused sound signatures and the Zip, Clip+, and Fuse all sharing the same clear sound signature. Although the NT6 Pro makes both sets of signatures sound great, Average_joe was correct in his assessment of the iPhone vs. clip+, the clip+ sounds much better (clearer and 3D). My Colorfly C3/C&C BH2 setup is still being shipped so I have not had a chance to hear them yet. My hopes are that the Colorfly C3 with the C&C BH2 will retain or improve on the Clip+ clarity while better supporting the NT6 Pro's bass capabilities.
I will report back once I get used to the sound signature and have more of a chance to play around with it.
6/24/13: UPDATE: After 10 more hours of listening, all weirdness is gone leaving nothing but goodness. The full sound spectrum blends effortlessly and naturally. The way I would describe the signature now is full fidelity. Although it is described as extended at both ends, I see it as capable of effortlessly playing the full spectrum while the competition is truncated sounding small. The music sounds as if it is coming from full sized humans in the same room with me rather than coming from shrunken humans the size of ants. In addition, all instruments and voices are scaled naturally and correctly and 3D sounding as if they are in the same room standing around me. The competition often puts the drummer or and the singer in another room down the hall with the door shut and in the worse case, the whole band. This is very close to the experience of listening to my large Maggies with all their planer goodness paired with dual M&K subwoofers through a dedicated Rotel 1000 watt amp.
As for brightness, I don't see how this is a bright CIEM - this was my biggest holdup in choosing the NT6 Pro after reading the reviews. It feels clear and natural and is in no way fatiguing. However, the rumble and definition in the bass notes are what call the most attention to itself as exceptional. Normally, bass this good covers up the detail rather than adding to the detail. In this case, I can clearly hear the different resonance characteristics coming from the singers voice, the bass guitar, the lead guitar, and a flat bass kick from the drummer. These are usually muddied up into a single bloated bass note.
Although the NT6 Pro makes every source sound its best, it definitely scales well through the lower tier sources. Going from the iPhone/iPod to the Sansa family (Clip+/Zip/Fuse) there is a clear improvement moving to a much clearer cleaner presentation that is much fuller and more resolving. Moving up to a Colorfly C3 / C&C BH2 combo, the presentation again becomes even cleaner clearer and more resolving with a bigger more dynamic sound and fuller bass note. I hate to say it, but there is likely to be a ibasso DX100 or R10 in my future.
I am very happy with my choice and all my fears were for not. I don't like bright presentations as I find them irratating - I don't find the NT6 Pro bright or sibilant but rather well balanced and clear. I don't like dark presentations as I find them lacking in detail or bass bloated - the NT6 is the clearest most transparent thing I have heard yet. I usually don't like what is considered balanced as they are usually missing both ends of the sound spectrum taking me to a bright (lack of bass) or boring presentation - the NT6 Pro is very balanced but extended to include the full spectrum at both ends creating a very exciting presentation. I still want a SE 5-Way, but I feel it will be complementry rather than competitive in sound signature.
Edited by Barra - 3/30/17 at 11:27pm