Quad driver custom in-ear monitor

NocturnaL Atlantis

Average User Rating:
4/5,
  • Named after the legendary island described in Plato's literature, Atlantis was thought to have been a home to a society with an abundance of wealth & prosperity which ended in a demise. The tale of Atlantis has captured the imagination of people even after 2000 years since it was first described, which many had since interpreted it as a tale of hubris.

    The Atlantis possess an immensely rich & engaging sound signature, one that is built upon the Gorham’s foundation. With the addition of a powerful dual mid-range driver, vocals are rich in subtle details & much more forward. The all-new 3-way crossover network enables the low & high drivers to perform better individually. Bass is now fast & punchy, and highs a lot more precise.

    With the introduction of the Atlantis, we have also introduced more eye-catching designs. The new Abstract Swirl option gives rise to true one-of-a-kind artworks, since we conjure the swirls in a different fashion every time.

Recent User Reviews

  1. crinacle
    4.0/5,
    "Crystal clarity at an insane price"
    Pros - Clarity, midrange energy, vocal presentation
    Cons - Treble extension, bass authority, note weight
    Foreword

    I approached Treoo to loan me a demo unit after auditioning the Atlantis in-store. I don't usually get sent review units; instead I approach the companies that I think deserve acclaim.

    NocturnaL Audio is best known for their cables but have recently branched out to custom in-ear monitors with little to no fanfare. I have both the Gorham and Atlantis with me, and the latter has certainly impressed me especially at its asking price of 650USD for a fully custom unit.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Measurements performed on an IEC60318-4-compliant rig.

    Bass

    Quick with the barest hint of presence in the lowest registers. Note weight is rather light and thinned out compared to IEMs performing in the top echelon of bass performance. Bass hits aren’t the most textured nor the most rounded and overall performs below the average in its price range.

    The bass is definitely the Atlantis’ achilles’ heel but retains the overall signature of being extremely quick and detailed just like the rest of the Atlantis’ frequency range. If anything, I’d consider them “reference”-styled bass that’s more in line with neutral monitors like the UERM or the ER4.


    Midrange

    Clean, clear and detailed. Possesses a significant amount of energy due to a peak in the upper midrange. Vocals are open, airy and have a quality of sharpness to them, which gives them a nice resolving edge to their tone.

    I was most impressed with the Atlantis’ presentation of vocals and acoustics. Transients are fast and note speed is blisteringly fast, resulting a very bell-like clarity and cleanness that you’d usually only find in higher end IEMs (Empire Ears Spartan and Jomo Samba comes to mind). An absolute joy to listen to on instrument-centric genres like rock or even vocal jazz.


    Treble

    Flat and well-controlled. Follows the speed of the rest of the frequency range as well the feather-like note weight. Cymbals and hi-hats avoid ringing and sibilance remains at a minimum despite the high energies being put forth.

    Looking past the peak in the upper midrange, the Atlantis’ treble continues on to be relatively well controlled, if ever so slightly lacking in extension. It’s thankfully not as boosted as the upper midrange peak and is slightly subdued in comparison, which creates a good balance in the frequencies and prevents the Atlantis from sounding overly fatiguing or sharp.


    Soundstage

    Above-average width that translates to a spacious and airy presentation, with slight sacrifices in depth but nothing too major. Positional ability is decent, definitely a step above its competitive range.


    Comparison with UERM

    The UERM has been my reference (replacing the ER4, with itself being replaced by the UE18+ soon). It has also become my benchmark for midrange timbre, with tone accuracy surpassing even my TOTL IEMs.

    The bass presentation on both are eerily similar, with the Atlantis being ever-so-slightly north of neutral when compared next to the UERM, though can easily be recognized as neutral on its own. Decay is typical of BA woofers, being fast, detailed and snappy. Nothing really out of the ordinary.

    The midrange has wholly definitely signatures and I’d daresay the UERM still edges out in tonal accuracy, note weight and detail. The UERM does sound more “natural” to my ears but the Atlantis has its strengths in sheer clarity, energy and a slightly thinner and faster signature. While I may prefer the UERM for most intents and purposes, I’ll acknowledge that the two’s presentations differ enough to have one’s own sonic preferences tilt the scales to a large degree.

    The treble on both is more similar than different, though they still have one or two distinguishing features. For one, the Atlantis has slightly better control while the UERM is peakier but also sparklier. At the same time, the Atlantis tends to side with light, thin hits while the UERM presents a better sense of power, the UERM being more forward with its upper frequencies as as result.


    Conclusion

    The sub-$1000 market for custom in-ears is rather sparse, with the older players like Ultimate Ears and JH Audio still dominating that part of the scene. In fact, before NocturnaL emerge I wouldn't have any recommendations for the $500~1000 range (apart from the AAW W500, which just barely scrapes by with its $900 MSRP).

    With the introduction of the Atlantis, there's finally one addition to my recommendations that doesn't break the bank to the extent of the other great CIEMs. It's no giant-killer for sure, but where its strength lies it can certainly punch well above its price. Stunning clarity and energy that I would daresay rivals even the great Jomo Samba (but of course, can't hold a candle in other aspects).

    A breathtaking entry by NocturnaL. A no-brainer for a reference-class monitor at an entry level pricing.
    BartSimpson1976 likes this.

User Comments

To view comments, simply sign up and become a member!