Penon 10th Anniversary


1000+ Head-Fier
Penon's 10th Anniversary - an affair to remember!
Pros: Magnificently well-balanced all rounders, great at almost everything.
Cons: Very little complain about at this pricepoint.
Every once in awhile a product comes along that’s annoyingly good at everything.

Without wishing to seem overtly negative, today’s portable audio market has become such an ocean of “good-but-not-great” offerings that analysing the flaws in each can be an effective means of deciding your next purchase – simply choose the IEM who’s shortcomings bother you the least at your chosen price, and away you go!

Now if you’re beginning to pick up a vibe that perhaps the IEM I’m reviewing today – Penon’s latest 10th Anniversary tribrid – may in fact be perfect, rest assured they aren’t. Nothing made by human hands ever is, and at the risk of veering down the poetic side of the street I’ll muse that true beauty lies in life’s imperfections, not in a fruitless quest for faultlessness.

So Penon’s 10th Anniversary IEMs aren’t perfect, but they’re annoyingly good. What does that mean, and why should you care?


Earlier this year I was charmed by Penon’s Impact IEM, with its’ luxurious midrange and effortless resolution. Yet lacking a dynamic driver, the Impacts’ bass texture & slam occasionally left me wanting.

So when Penon announced a new product to commemorate their 10th anniversary, a hybrid IEM containing not one but two DDs my interest was peaked. After reaching out to them they agreed to provide a set of 10th Anniversary earphones at a discount on the understanding I’d pen a review.


Let’s get the formalities out the way. The eponymously named 10th Anniversary IEMs (just “10th” from now on) retail for USD $499 and contain 2x 6mm DDs for the lows, 1x Sonion BA for mids, 1x Knowles BA covering highs and 2x Sonion ESTs for the ultra-highs. Made of blue medical resin with a small vent on top, there’s a total of 3 internal tubes and a 4 way crossover.

With regards to form factor, the 10th are on the larger side – slightly above average for a tribrid with a fairly low driver count, perhaps mostly due to those two DDs. I do find them shapely enough to use for hours without discomfort, but they do not disappear in quite the same way ISN’s slightly smaller EST50s do for instance. They’re comfortable, just not what I’d call petit.



The 10th arrived in a smallish box with a leather carry case, leather accessories case, three sets of eartips, shirt clip & IEM cleaning tool. Penon have bundled their CS819 cable with the 10th (terminated in your choice of 4.4mm, 3.5mm or 2.5mm plug) which usually sell separately for USD $49. This is a lightweight 8 wire OCC copper & SPC cable, a versatile choice I wouldn’t necessarily feel compelled to upgrade – but regardless stay tuned for cable comparisons later on!


Please note as I was one of the earlier customers to purchase the 10th, they arrived with a leather case that will not be shipped with subsequent orders – instead, those who purchase the 10th will receive both the two cases pictured above which I think you’ll agree are a substantial improvement.


Sound Impressions​

Having tested the 10th primarily with a Cayin N8ii DAP (in solid state mode with P+ enabled) using local files stored on an 1TB i400 Micron micro-SD card with my preferred Spinfit W1 tips, the 10th possess either a W-shaped or mildly V-shaped sound signature depending on how you interpret those terms. Their midrange is far too rich & present to be considered V-shaped, so as a low volume listener I’d best describe them as W-shaped.

Indeed the 10th’s standout characteristic may be how superbly balanced they are across all frequencies, reminiscent of Sennheiser’s IE600. The difference here is multiple drivers delivering improved technicalities, which was always the shortcoming of the IE600’s single dynamic driver.

Utilising one DD for sub bass and another for midbass, the 10th deliver a satisfying bass experience as you might expect, tastefully north of neutral with a slight bias towards midbass, but stopping short of veering into L-shaped territory. Despite each driver being just 6mm, the net effect is they’ll satisfy all but die-hard bassheads, who’d be better served by ISN’s EST50s which I’ll compare the 10th with later.


Like most Penon IEMs, the 10th’s smooth midrange is where a lot of the magic happens. Clearly Penon have chosen to make midrange richness a brand-defining trait, so despite their slight W or V-shaped lean the 10th maintain a satisfying sense of vocal fullness without that feeling of being positioned too far back from the performers.

Treble is delivered with the sort of effortless resolution one expects from EST drivers and did not leave me needing to hunt for detail, particularly compared with IEMs in the 10th’s price range. Tiny details were rendered with sufficient delicacy without a hint of sibilance, so it’s unlikely you’ll be bothered by the 10th’s high frequencies if you happen to be treble sensitive – at least at the lower volumes I listen at. (typically 17/100 on the N8ii in High-Gain)

Technical performance is very good, above what I’d expect at this price particularly with 2 DDs present. The 10th’s stage is satisfyingly wide and surprisingly deep, though the N8ii helps in that regard. Imaging is above average without being exceptional, and dynamics similarly capable. Resolution is well above that of entry-level IEMs, and never leaves me feeling important nuances are being obscured. However those micro details are not quite as effortlessly delivered as I’ve heard from TOTL IEMs costing thousands of dollars, particularly those without DDs.

Nitpicking minor quibbles, although the 10th present a very coherent window on the music, that coherency is a hair less clean due to the presence of 2 DDs. Perhaps removing one would alleviate this minor sense of diffuseness, though doing so would undoubtedly cause other tuning issues.

The addition of more BAs & ESTs would provide that sense of effortless refinement to the midrange & treble one associates with TOTL IEMs, but for their price & driver count the 10th come surprisingly close.

Finally, though I’d argue they walk a tightrope between politeness & aggressiveness almost perfectly, you might feel they err on the side of politeness.


IEM Comparisons​

ISN EST50 – 1xDD, 2xBA, 2xEST (USD $449)

The EST50s share many similarities with the 10th but do not overlap enough that purchasing one makes the presence of the other redundant. Nor is it easy to quantify one as “better” across the board, a more accurate descriptor would be “different”.

The ISNs are slightly smaller, lighter, and to my ears more shapely than the 10th. I find them more comfortable, but the difference in comfort wouldn’t sway my decision if forced to choose between them.

EST50s are a bombastic V-shaped hybrid with a fun, bouncy sound that is biased towards sub rather than midbass. Bass is massively above neutral, and they demonstrate considerable treble sparkle. Their coherency is slightly above that of the 10th, with marginally better dynamics, and a LOT of bass impact & slam. They’re exciting without being glarey, but do come across as more aggressive.

The 10th pull ahead by sounding significantly more refined, smooth & mature, which can leave the EST50s feeling somewhat raw, one-note or even hollow by direct comparison. The EST50s also have a flatter, slightly narrow stage and will occasionally feel like they’re pushing detail in your face in a way the 10th won’t. If you listen largely to EDM the EST50s may suit you better, but the 10th are superior all-rounders covering all genres.


Moondrop Blessing 3 – 2xDD, 4xBA (USD $319)

The B3’s are small for their driver count, slightly thinner than the EST50s, and their clear resin shells give the impression of being very well built.

They’re very fast and responsive considering the 2 DDs present, with a wider stage than the 10th and a more effortless perception of resolution.

Unfortunately that’s where the B3 good news ends, because they’re Harman Target tuned. I have nothing good to say about Harman-tuned IEMs which to my ears sound unnatural, absolutely not resembling the tonality & timbre of real instruments.

This explains why the B3’s demonstrate a frustrating sense of diffuseness, with an unacceptably hollow, anaemic thinness that clearly sacrifices frequencies necessary for accurate musical reproduction for the sake of boosting technical performance and prioritising a clinical presentation above all else.

By contrast the 10th deliver similar levels of technical ability without sounding like all life has been sucked out of the music, and are my choice over the B3’s in a heartbeat.


Kiwi Ears Quartet – 2xDD, 2xBA (USD $109)

The Quartets are budget hybrids, surprisingly large for their driver count, that never give the impression of being just $109 at first glance. They even contain a pair of tuning switches, and I found turning both to the OFF position yielded pleasing results.

Unfortunately it’s only upon listening to them do you realise spending more money might’ve been a good idea.

The Quartets are unashamedly V-shaped, reminiscent of the EST50s but with a midrange that is clearly lacking warmth & richness. That comparison suffers even further when compared to the 10th’s smooth presentation of vocals.

Biased more heavily towards the upper midrange than the 10th, the Quartets do have a decently wide stage without the EST50’s aggressiveness, but make instruments & voices feel much small than on the 10th, with appreciably lower resolution, and a flatter, less dynamic sound that struggles to leave me feeling engaged with the music. In short they fail to match the 10th in any department.


Cable Comparisons​

Should you upgrade the 10th’s stock cable & what sort of benefit will you find by doing so?

The short answer is yes, the 10th are revealing enough that cable improvements will be readily discernible if your source is up to snuff, but the stock cable is adequate enough you shouldn’t feel pressured to do so.

Penon CS819 – 10th Anniversary Stock Cable (USD $49)

This 8 wire OCC copper & SPC cable is exceedingly well balanced, and has been well chosen as the stock cable.

It features a fairly deep stage, a slight bias towards upper rather than lower midrange, and is extremely light for an 8 wire cable – enough so it’s easy to forget you’re wearing it.

ISN S8 (USD $32.50)

8 wires of OCC SPC with a budget price tag, this is the EST50’s stock cable. Being so light the S8 doesn’t feel like an 8 wire cable, but does bring the V-shaped emphasis we’ve always associated with silver cables.

It delivers a cleaner presentation & blacker background than the 10th’s stock cable, with the absence of CS819’s pure copper resulting in less lower midrange emphasis. I do however prefer the greater musicality & groove of the CS819 for the 10th.

NiceHCK BlackSoul (USD $50)

A 2 wire ‘5 element alloy’ cable with distinctive looks, the BlackSoul is one of the most comfortable cables I’ve tried.

BlackSoul has an interesting way of smoothing out the treble without losing perception of detail, widening the stage in the process, though it does leave it feeling decidedly flat.

Not the best match for the 10th unless you happen find its’ treble a tad peaky.

Penon Vocal (USD $69)

This 4 wire silver-plated OCC copper & gold foil cable is one to wear if you like attracting attention. Despite looking like it was purchased in a Chinese gift shop, the Vocal is a surprisingly high quality cable that’s quickly becoming one of my favourites.

Vocal delivers -as you may have guessed- a very noticeable improvement to vocal articulation with a more forward midrange, which helps balance out the 10th’s slight V-shaped lean. Vocal also delivers improved dynamics and a blacker background, and is one of the most satisfying cable pair-ups with the 10th.

Penon Obsidian (USD $149)

This 4 wire OCC copper & gold plated copper cable is surprisingly heavy, and is one I’ve struggled to appreciate.

The Obsidian is fantastic for pushing vocals forward, improving the 10th’s midrange richness even further. What I don’t like is it projects a very narrow stage, which can almost lead to a feeling of claustrophobia.

If female vocals make up a large slice of your library the Obsidian might allow you to feel alluringly close to the singers you love, but it can struggle with other genres.

Penon Leo Plus (USD $249)

This 8 wire gold-silver-palladium alloy wire is much lighter than the Ares S 8 wire & Martini, doesn’t boost dynamics quite as much, but is better ergonomically.

Leo Plus improves the 10th’s bass quite a bit, more in the midbass rather than sub region, and also expands the soundstage width.

Imaging is improved, perhaps due to treble being emphasised quite strongly. However I notice a slight midrange cloudiness, as if tonality is sacrificed for technical performance.

Effect Audio Ares S 8 wire (USD $279)

This 8 wire OCC copper cable is a beast in every sense. Heavy, with thick earhooks, you’ll struggle to forget you’re wearing it. The Ares S 8 delivers a similarly muscular sound with a very pronounced lower-end emphasis one would expect from this much copper.

The lower midrange & midbass are boosted quite a bit, as are dynamics which is normally the case with 8 wire cables. Imaging is also improved and the stage feels slightly larger. A good choice if you crave a meatier sound for rock music.

Liquid Links Martini (USD $349)

8 wires of gold plated copper & palladium plated silver gorgeousness, I’d love to say the Martini sounds as good as it looks. Unfortunately it’s been a difficult cable to pair successfully, and that remains the case with the 10th.

Martini improves dynamics but unlike the Ares S 8 accentuates upper rather than lower midrange. It widens the stage slightly more than Ares S 8, but doesn’t feel quite as tall.

Martini’s tonality doesn’t sound quite right with the 10th and it can be slightly fatiguing, despite the sound being quite well balanced. Perhaps there’s too much upper midrange?

Liquid Links Venom (USD $1089)

Pairing the 10th with this 2 wire ‘quinary alloy’ cable worth more than double their purchase price doesn’t make much rational sense, but that’s exactly what I love about this hobby. My friend Lycos loaned me this Venom for an upcoming cable shootout so of course I couldn’t resist seeing how much the 10th benefits from it.

Venom improves the 10th’s technical performance more than any other cable tested. Venom has a somewhat v-shaped character, and sub bass in particular feels stronger.

Dynamics are boosted on par with the 8 wire cables, and stage expands similarly, but there’s enhanced resolution with a very black background no other cable could match, and it makes the 10th’s upper treble call attention to itself in a way I haven’t heard before.

No doubt you’d find better value spending more on your IEMs than such an expensive cable upgrade, but pairing Venom with the 10th brought them shockingly close to the performance of a TOTL IEM.



This has been a difficult review to write, with so little to complain about!

Penon’s 10th Anniversary earphones do just about everything well & perform splendidly with every genre of music I’ve tried. They really only suffer in comparison with IEMs with vastly higher pricetags, and even then are such great all-rounders I can imagine many of us preferring them to TOTL IEMs with more specialist appeal.

I distrust reviews that are glowingly positive and the 10th Anniversaries aren’t perfect. They could be a touch smaller, I’d love if they had more treble sparkle (without upgrading cables) and although they’ve never sounded slow, using 2 DDs means they’ll never have the blistering speed of BA or BA/EST only IEMs. Everything in life is a tradeoff.

Having said all that, I’ll say this – the 10th Anniversary are easily the safest blind buy I’ve come across since the IE600s last year. Which I suppose isn’t very long… but in this hobby even six months can feel a lifetime.

Does that make the 10th Anniversary the love of my life? Ask me when we’re back from our honeymoon!
Great review thanks for sharing. Just a correction the 2 6mm DD are playing the same frequency not one mid bass one Sub bass. I confirmed this with Chi Kong Hui.
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Great review, mate!


Previously known as TheDeafMonk
Pros: What I Liked:
- Included Accessories are top notch , case , cable, tips, cleaning brush all with minimal packaging well done PENON
- 0.78 2 Pin termination for easy cable swapping embedded directly into the resin shell
- Sibilant free highs great for treble sensitive people with lots of extension for details and air.
- Musical balanced W shape sound signature
- PENON Unmistakable House Signature VOCALS
- Fantastic bottom end that goes low and hits hard while blending into the mix with minimum bass bleed into vocals (Cable Dependant) for a more fun IEM vs a neutral tuned
- Vocals in both Male & Female are silky smooth in a organic and lush musical way ( Copied and pasted from every PENON Review LOL )
- Micro and Macro details are a real standout on the 10th
- Hits 80% of the bass quality and quantity of the FiR Audio Xe6 $4000 Kilo buck IEM ( HUGE POINT HERE! ) That’s amazing the Xe6 Is a Amazing Set and thanks to a Amazing Friend who load me their fun toys to listen to and enjoy.
- One of the Best Implementations of SONION EST drivers I have ever heard.
Cons: My wish list:
- Micro Nuances could be better- not a huge knock as I use that comparison to a 64 Audio U12t another standout top in its class IEM
- Stage Depth is good but just average
- Female vocals on a Pure Copper Cable a tad, a smidgen too thick needs a Mixed cable- LIKE THE ONE INCLUDED! Even then I found the 10th to have a ever so slight bass bleed into Vocals on certain bass heavy tracks.

Now let's get into it: The Techy Stuff
2+2+2 CONFIG
Double Dynamic Driver Consisting of:
2x 6mm Crystalline plated Biological Diaphragm for the lower frequencies comes out 1 dedicated sound tube
1x SONION Balanced Armature for the mid frequencies
1x KNOWLES Balanced Armature for the highs BA's Share the second sound tube.
2x SONION EST Drivers for Ultra Highs - Shares third sound tube.
Shell is a Fully Transparent Electric Blue shell with the top made by hand that seems to be similar to each other but unique to each IEM! - Funny the colors are TDM Ying/Yang colors I don’t think so!
The 10th uses 3 sound tubes to carry the sound to the full resin nozzle
A 4 Way crossover divides the frequencies to each respected driver.
Sensitivity is rated as 110 db for each watt of power used.
Impedance is 9 Ohms
Cable can be chosen as either 3.5mm SE, or 2.5mm or 4.4 Pentagon Balanced Options and is a 8 core Silver Plated & OFCC mixed braded cable. PENON CABLE CS819 (Copper , Silver Plated 8 Cores 19 Shares p/core)

More information can be found here and non-affiliated link:

Purchased from Penon Directly w 10th Anniversary Promotion Free Gift Mine was a ($219 NF Audio NF2U). Bonus Blue case and 10th Anniversary case shipped separately because I was a early adopter.

Subjective Part of my Audio Review -

What I Liked:
  • Included Accessories are top notch , case , cable, tips, cleaning brush all with minimal packaging well done PENON
  • 0.78 2 Pin termination for easy cable swapping embedded directly into the resin shell
  • Sibilant free highs great for treble sensitive people with lots of extension for details and air.
  • Musical balanced W shape sound signature
  • PENON Unmistakeable House Signature VOCALS
  • Fantastic bottom end that goes low and hits hard while blending into the mix with minimum bass bleed into vocals (Cable Dependant) for a more fun IEM vs a neutral tuned
  • Vocals in both Male & Female are silky smooth in a organic and lush musical way ( Copied and pasted from every PENON Review LOL )
  • Micro and Macro details are a real standout on the 10th
  • Hits 80% of the bass quality and quantity of the FiR Audio Xe6 $4000 Kilo buck IEM ( HUGE POINT HERE! ) That’s amazing the Xe6 Is a Amazing Set and thanks to a Amazing Friend who load me their fun toys to listen to and enjoy.
  • One of the Best Implementations of SONION EST drivers I have ever heard.

What I Though Needed Improvement: (Subjective)

  • Micro Nuances could be better- not a huge knock as I use that comparison to a 64 Audio U12t another standout top in its class IEM
  • Stage Depth is good but just average
  • Female vocals on a Pure Copper Cable a tad, a smidge to thick needs a Mixed cable- LIKE THE ONE INCLUDED! Even then I found the 10th to have a ever so slight bass bleed into Vocals on certain bass heavy tracks.

I share my impressions as I hear them with my ears.
As all our ears are different shapes & size so what I hear as bright or bass heavy -you might hear as dull and Vise-Versa; just something to be mindful of.

What makes my ears happy as a sound signature is a slightly more aggressive L shape. I love my Bass Sub and Mid Bass slam, love it all actually; and in balanced quantity. With the Bass, I prefer a faster decay the faster the better so as to not bleed into the mids., I am treble sensitive and prefer a slightly darker warmer replay with good treble extension.

I prefer the fast speedy bass of the Beryllium Coated Driver of my Xenns Mangird UP with a Beryllium Coated Driver. Of course, there are exceptions in the market - as I also find the bass of the Bio Diaphragm used in the Yanyin Canon special - has some special sauce like an 8" subwoofer that feels like a 12" Has the slam and some serious sub-bass! And the super cool Copper Alloy Shell IKKO Obsidian OH10 does some magic to the bass.

My music Library is widely varied from; Metallica, Great White, Cowboy Junkies, Pink Floyd, Adelle, Melisa Ethridge, Fleetwood Mac, Five for Fighting, Manskin, Poncho Sanchez, Jimmy Smith, Chopin, The Crystal Method just to name a few. When not listening to my test tracks the majority is Jazz or Alternative Rock especially Female Rock. Lorde, Halsey, Alanis Morrisette, Evanescence. All depends on my mood.

Sources: E1DA SG3, Shanling UP5, Geshelli JNOG J2 with AKM4493 chip. Truthear SHIO (Dual Cirrus Logic 43198 DAC Chips)
DAP/TRANSPORT: From Lenovo Laptop with Tidal, Hiby R6iii ( ES9038Q2M ), Samsung S22 Ultra with DSD Files.
Amps: LoxjiP20 & XDUOO MT-604 tube hybrid amps and Topping A90D Amp 4.4 Pentagon Balanced Out - Unless stated
Tips Used for the 10th were the JVC FX10 SPIRAL DOTS Tips I found for Best Result and subjective: Short Wide Bore are recommended to maximize stage my preference at the expense of perceived bass enhancement with narrow bore tips.
Best Cable pairing with my stock was the HAKUGEI JOYFULL VOICE , GOLD/SPC/COPPER Mix.

My Format has changed with community feedback. So now I will list the music tracks I used & why with my musical impressions of the playback using that track. I hope this will give you some context for my library and give you some contexts to compare using the same tracks.

Before I begin with some sound impressions, I would like to share a bit of my journey to the 10th.
When I saw the announcement of PENON's 10th Anniversary IEM I have a epiphany moment. A light bulb went off and I knew what I had to do to afford this IEM.
Taking a step back in time when I originally purchased a set of EJ07M Kinda Lave Edition I was excited, I heard wonderful things about its presentation and knew the EJ's had a bit of a cult following. My disappointment started when I found out the actual tuning was not as advertised. LETSHOUER was wonderful to deal with but I also spent a additional $160 on sending the units back and getting a retune with a resin shell for a better fit as well. I picked or tried to choose a Blue Resin shell from the selection but ultimately didn't come out the way I was thinking it would. ( 10th Electric Blue Color was my target ). Now for the sound even adding a 3db sub boost still didn’t get me to my happy place.
The overall tuning of the EJ07M are worthy of the praise it’s a wonderful IEM! Head Stage , Instrument placement , EST Implementation all excellent.

Why am I telling you this it’s a PENON 10th review! Because on my journey as you get to listen to more IEM and have a greater sense of your personal tastes and what you pick up on a daily bases. The EJ's for me as excellent and standout IEM in their own right got shelved and I stopped listening to them. Why because they pushed the technical details beyond my personal comfort zone, and instead of just listening to the music I found I was listening to the IEM.
Full circle, I have a set of unused $700+ IEM. So now here is where I interject my epiphany moment. I decided to let my set go to a new home and sell them to afford the 10th.
The color by the grace of good Karma for the 10th was exactly what I was shooting for, The use of my favorite SONION BA for Mids was also in the mix and since I just reviewed and fell in love with the FAN2 and now the 10th's Dual 6mm DD, I knew this IEM was meant for me. The faceplate happens to also be my logo colors - coincidence I THINK NOT!


Let's Begin:

#1 "It's The End Of The World As We Know It" by REM
  • Layering of Instruments + vocals showcase the implementation of those SONION EST Drivers, the added some super fun twinkle's and sparkle's on the top end to give this track a really special presentation that was thoroughly enjoyable.

#2 "Scared" by The Tragically Hip

  • On this track I heard a ringing like those clapping toy monkey's in a very subtle way, and it added to the most excellent guitar replay. Combine that with Gord Dowies voice and I heard things for the first time in a track that I have played many times over and that I know so well. It was a special moment!

#3 "Don’t Care Anymore" by Phil Colins

  • STEREO BASS, and Great Vocals made this track stand out. Multilayered bass and the 10th did it so well. One Bass hit is super snappy and the next goes low with excellent release and decay. Without washing out Phils vocals was truly a marvelous replay.

#4 "Enter Sandman" by Metallica
Not the largest stage I have heard but what was standout was the 10th's ability to have Macro and Micro Dynamics ( The ability to add excitement and detail to a song presentation, through mixing or mastering a tack or live replay recording where the quiet passages and the loud ones are done in a way to emphasize the difference of volume to add effect between passages or overall song)
The 10th does this in spades and then some. With iFi's XSPACE its surreal!

#5 "Lux AEterna " by Metallica
The dual 6mm Dynamic Drivers in full effect here with their mind numbing speed JUST WOW!

#6 "All My Friends Are Here" by Joe Satriani
The Mixing of this multi layered track gives you a good sense of a IEM's ability to present stage depth and Micro Dynamics again.
The replay was excellent great layering of instruments, guitar sounded bang on. Well done PENON

#7 "Shape Of My Heart" by Sting
I had a good laugh on this one, I had to listen to it 5 times before I got my thoughts down on paper because it was so enjoyable to listen to I kept zoning out and was just listening to the music. Finally under duress to keep my focus that I came to the conclusion this a most excellent IEM for getting lost in the music. END OF REVIEW.
Oh and yes Stings voice was done in a justifying supercilious manner!

#8 "The Antidote Is In The Poison" GoGo Penguin
  • This is a Modern Jazz at its best. Powerful, Dynamic track full of emotion and snappy bass. Fantastic track to listen to how well Micro Dynamics are conveyed and get a good sense of the IEM's ability to convey that to the listener. So how did the 10th do? Well its on this list of standout tracks a most excellent replay of instruments makes jazz on the 10th a standout. Perfect Bass! Where I found the Serial to be too much bass and the Fan2 A bit lean in the lower bass the 10th was bang on perfect.

#9 "Unfinished Sympathy" by Massive Attack

  • Sweet drops , goes low , vocals perfect.

#10 "Money For Nothing" by Dire Straits

  • Of the charts micro and macro dynamics again. The W shape sound signature does a wonderful job. Not up to 64 Audio levels but very, very good.

#11 "Give" by Nils Lofgren

  • The guitar and vocals what a combo of OMG replay and such wicked fun.

#12 "Ubiquitous Mr. Lovegrove (LIVE)" by Dead Can Dance

The stage is massive clearly impresses with the 10th's ability to convey a real sense of the live recording and the size of the venue, quite excellent.

#13 "Nie Pokonasz Milosci (Remastered)" by Hania Rani
The microphones on the inside of the piano and on the keys is clearly present and the effects are outstanding. Probably the most musical replay I have ever heard this track being played. So beautiful.

#14 "Jetlag Corporation (Remastered)" by Aes Dana
In this track I heard the most perfect implementation of balance between low bass and EST Driver perfection. There is perfect cohesiveness showcased between all the drivers with lost of bass and twinkleies so, so smoothly.

#15 "Vivaldi Double Cello Concerto Mvt#1" by Tina Guo
  • A real standout track for multi-layers instrument separation.

#16 "Chemical Mentalist" by The Crystal Method

  • EDM SLAM No sibilance or harshness present just massive amounts of fun that makes you turn it up loud.

#17 “POWER” by Ellie Goulding

  • Lots of bass here without washing out vocals a real test and has very nice bass hits to boot.

#18 “Cover me in Sunshine” by Pink

  • On a OFCC cable vocals gets a tad washed out so when switching to a mixed cable or SPC it was standout.

#19 “You Oughta Know” by Alanis Morissette

  • I love edgy female vocals and PENON's latest came through with most excellent female vocals with just the right amount of edge!

#20 “ Way Down Deep “ by Jennifer Warnes

  • I have used this track for countless years as a test track to demo speakers and the 10th didn’t disappoint and came through with flying colors.

#21 “ Wake Up “ Oliver Mtukudzi
(Oliver Mtukudzi is an African Musician and prolific guitarist and Vocalist. He sings with a mix of South African styles sometimes in English sometimes mixed like in this track and includes the traditional drumming styles of the Korekore. TUKU MUSIC at its finest – Listening for vocals, bass lines, and clarity – and because it is just fun! Right at the beginning you have some very cool snaps and instrumental) I loved the playback on this track amazing vocals and instruments in a fun lively manor.

OK that was jus some tracks that blew my mind.
NO COUNTRY MUSIC WAS OR WILL EVER BY PLAYED BY ME EVER. I heard from another forum member that he thought the 10th was not so good for the Gene of Country or Reggae Music. So I can neither confirm nor deny this. But Hollie Cook slammed?

Firstly let me state that the PENON 10TH is a collage of the best traits from all of their IEM's I have heard.
When a IEM makes you totally forget your listening to anything other than music that’s a very powerful thing, and extremely rare at any price in this hobby!

My favorite set for chillaxing is the XENNS MANGIRD UP, Here with its use of SONION BA and EST Drivers makes me love this combo. That bieng said sometimes one of my things on my wish list for this set was a bit more of the special sauce and happy to report the 10th delivers with a perfect mix of more EST sparkle and highs that sometimes I find lacking in the UP's. Also probably what makes that set such a chill set technical yet fun. The 10th just takes it to the next level for a lot less $$$

Lets talk about those dual 6mm Drivers. So I had a taste of them in the FAN2 and fell in love with the naturalness and speedy slam they output.
So in the 10th take that to the next level add a bunch more low frequency extension but keep the speed and slam possible? Yup mission accomplished!
On first listen there was some bass bleed into the mids buy after about 100 hours of burn in things really mellowed out bass dropped lower and 95% of the bass bleed was gone not perfect but great.

The 10th defiantly has the PENON House Signature Sound with its Lush natural sounding tonally correct mids. The use of the Knowles BA for the highs was the better choice of driver over its SONION brother as I find the way the Knowles BA reproduces highs a sharper more correct way of doing it. I find IEM's that have the SONION BA for highs a bit too dull. I was actually worried about that in the original specs as it was listed as SONION BA for the highs and had my concerns if the energy could keep up with the dual 6's. The specs have since been corrected and all is right with the world again.

As a comparison: I found the Globes too dark for my tastes, The serial not speedy enough in the Bass, The ISN H50 vocals too recessed.
The EJ07M too distracting, The XENNS UP almost perfect and the 10th PERFECT Mix of all of these rolled into my wish list.

Highs are also a real killer on this tuning of this set, not only do they have great energy, but just enough energy in all the right places to add details, correct instrument tonality quite perfect actually. Now the kicker no sibilance or harshness even for treble sensitive people like me that dip at 7-8k really helps this out and since the pina gain is at 4k and drops at 5k I find the tuning a masterful piece of git!

I have to mention the most excellent implementation of those SONION EST - These kind of drivers done correctly are just supposed to enhance the High frequencies.
With the dual EST not 4 thankfully as was the case for my GS Audio SE12 ( Overdone EST ) I observed through my 2 ears that the EST tuning used on the 10th were done in a excellent application and adds to the overall tuning to enhance the fantastic BA highs and not compete with them. BRAVO PENON.

The decision to sell my EJ's was the best decision ever as I get to own this extraordinary set. With all the things I loved about my favorite sets I own and have heard rolled into one but without any of the things I wished those sets had more of.

With the same kind of faster slam and weight of the XENNS UP for Lower bass and the speedy power of the FAN2 bass the 10th hit a excellent balance.
Add to this the incredible clean vocals of the Ej's but done in the PENON House signature way hard not to love the way all my favorite singers sounded.
From Male vocals from Sting& Shaggy, Lou Reed, Phil Colins, Billy Joel, Lars, Manskin and John Legend to all my favorite female singers - Lorde, Miley Cyrus, Halsey, Pink, Sia, Allanis Morrisette, Ella Fitzgerald and Melisa Ethridge; they all sounded correct and natural.

Lastly I will talk about stage, I have gushed on about this anniversary IEM enough to sound like a paid infomercial! ( I paid full price for this set )
Stage is not the most 3D and not the most engaging I have heard. That was one of the problems with the EJ's too much all over the place. The 10th keeps you in focus with whatever is playing front and center not to distract you from the great vocals or musical piece your listening to, but enough to make the dynamics stand out and keep you on point. I personally find this kind of tuning my favorite and makes for a very fun playback.

The PENON 10th has taken all of your favorite sets including ISN H50 and PENON Sets rolled them into one IEM and did it in a way to make you NEED IT in your stable. If you thought you would pass this one up, you were wrong.

The PENON 10th Anniversary IEM is a AUDIO VAMPIRE - keeps sucking you in for more and gets you lost in the music while simultaneously pumping you full of endorphins. How's that for a endorsement and comes honestly from my ears and my heart!

Thank you for taking the time to read my review.
My Video review is here: TO BE DONE LATER

My QuBuz Playlist:
Listen to the playlist Test Tracks by on Qobuz


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Great write up on these most excellent iems! I agree with your enthusiastic response at 50 hours in!
FANTASTIC review and i totally agree with you that Kniwles Teble is better than Sonion treble and when Penon recently updated the specs to say 10th AE was not using Sonion but instead Knowlels for Highs i was over the moon because mine 10th are still on there way!
Once again, Fantastic review a joy to read👍
100+ Hours and I am not surprised how much the 10th has mellowed out. I love it on first listen when you get a big grin on your face and know your money was well spent! Now after some time just appreciate them even more. Female vocals are smoother now and bass goes a tad lower with the same amount of bass bleed gone.


Headphoneus Supremus
Penon 10th Anniversary. I am not talking about how long they been in the business.
Pros: Tribrid, vented all resin build
A conglomeration of 10 years of excellence in IEM design
2x 6mm crystal plated bio dynamic deliver outstanding bass
1 Sonion BA for rich Penon house mids
1 Knowles treble BA for treble presence
2 Sonion ESTs for upper treble sparkle, air and extension
Wide Penon house V tuning with outstanding dynamics
Utilizes 4 crossovers and 3 sound bores for superb sound separation.
Technical, clean, imaging tour de force.
Punchy enhanced bass with deep reaching rumble
Treble clarity, articulation good solid presence and air.
Non-fatiguing, with good passive isolation.
CS819 cable for versatility.
3 sets of decent silicones.
Cons: Will take another 10 years for their 20th anniversary IEM to come about.
Penon 10th anniversary

Penon’s 10th anniversary is the actual name of their new Tribrid IEM and is actually how long they have been in the industry. Penon’s naming schemes are always on point. Why not call it the 10th anniversary, release an IEM that represents who they are and what they do so well.

I have been fortunate to hear and evaluate the end results of all their IEM offerings from their humble beginnings as a cable maker first and then their head long history of some of the best IEMs in the market with lasting power. If you don't know who Penon is by now and their goods being sold on their website based out of Hong Kong. Well for me it all started with these

Called the Penon Sphere. This all-resin single BA IEM was the first time I heard what was to become the Penon house sound.
Then more and more models came about the Orbs, Globes, Volts, Fan,Vortex,Legends,Fan2, and their current flagship the Impacts.

With the release of the new 10th anniversary IEM, Penon decided to release a tribrid which uses two sets of 6mm crystal plated bio dynamics, both utilized for the bass frequencies, Sonion BA for mids and Knowles BA for trebles, 2 Sonion ESTs, both for upper trebles. The design is a familiar all resin design with a bass vent out back. The medium sized shell is ergonomic for universal designs and it is impressive how they fit all the drivers inside the shell. The 10th uses a 4 way crossover design with 3 sound tubes. The Penon IEM this particular design comes the closest to is Penons former flagship tribrid the Penon Volts.

Penon does a few different types of tunings but always with a house sound, a sound design direction that is best described as musical in foundation aka Penon house sound, and always using premium drivers. You will never see Penon throw out a big upper mid gain, a tuning with a sucked out mid range, overly bassy, overly trebly, a strictly neutral tuning or use treble spikes to compensate for a lackluster mids performance. It does not matter if the tuning is more mid focused, a W shaped tuning, balanced V or a combination thereof. Once you hear a Penon made IEM you will understand what their house sound is all about and why they constantly win over enthusiasts with their sound direction.

Calling an IEM based on their 10th anniversary in the industry means they had to design this one with a clear goal in mind and here we have a conglomeration of what makes a Penon IEM so popular among their patrons. The new 10th of all the tuning choices Penon could have done. They decided to go with their version of a V shaped tuning. The only other clear V shaped tuning Penon has made in the past was their original Fan single dynamic IEM. Believe it or not, I believe this tuning choice was due to folks chatting about wanting a bit more bass impact and rumble from the Volt design. Regardless it is a bit of a departure from their most recent IEMs, the Fan2s more neutralish balanced mid focussed tuning.

With that I would like to personally congratulate Penon audio, the company and the man behind the business, their cables, their IEMs and their stand-up business practice that garnered much fanfare among enthusiasts around the world. Going strong in 2023 and beyond. Mr. Chi Kong Hui. You have been a star in the industry, and I hope your future endeavors become fruitful for you and all you do. Good luck to you my friend and don’t forget the small people that helped you along the way. You can look up the 10th anniversary IEM on Penons web site here.

The 10th I will call it from this point has been burned in for a period of a week's time. They are now ready for full evaluation using my sources the Fiio K9 pro ESS,K9, Ibasso DX300Max, Fiio M15,M15S, Shanling M6 pro, IFI gryphon, IFI signature, Fiio BTR7

What you get/ build
The 10th anniversary comes in Penons all familiar smaller rectangular box, inside the box is their standard blue zip up case. A good standard included cable in the Penon CS819 in any termination you choose when ordering and 3 sets of silicones. The accessories package here is fairly standard of Penon and the matching do it all CS819 will give you a very good understanding of how the 10th anniversary is tuned.

As of writing Penon has decided to go all out with a new packaging for the 10th anniversary IEM which includes several new cases that form the number 10 for their packaging these items will be included when ordering the Penon 10th anniversary.

Of course aftermarket cable pairings will get you one better which I will go over on this read.
The familiar all resin design Penon uses for their IEMs are once again used this time using 3 sound bores a 4 crossover design that brings yet another fluid sounding Penon IEM to the masses. The positives of the Resin build is that they will stand the test of time, as long as you don’t drop them from a 2 story balcony onto some concrete. It will shatter like your beer glass you took too much liberties with if dropped in the same manor. The benefit of the resin form universal is that it will block out a good amount of ambient noise for you listening pleasure. The 10th is no different. Has very good passive isolation from what I am guessing at 26 dbs. In other words these all resin form IEMs are excellent for your daily walks or working around the office or home.

Of all the tuning choices Penon could have implemented for this tribrid, they went with the tried and true V shaped tuning. Penons version of the V tuning is a bit different than what you're used to. They always include some of the best mids IEMs can produce in your ears so that is actually a part of the Penon manifesto as far as their house tunings goes and that is also included with the 10th. I don't know if they got the clue for a more fun take on their sound from reading the Penon thread here. But I remember a few members wanting some punchier bass and since the last IEM Penon made was the FAN2 which is more of a mid focused balanced neutralish signature. Penon went with a more engaging fun tuning this time and boy did they do a good job at it.

Are represented by a smaller Knowles treble BA plus the two sets of Sonion EST drivers for the ultra highs. EST infused IEMs just bring a bit of an extra finish to treble notes that is clearly discernible when utilized in a correct manner. Extra finish in the form of added sparkle, air and fine micro nuances that are sometimes blunted or just not present without using the EST driver. Penon actually brought some extra emphasis for the lower trebles to counter the bass end of the 10th. Tuning is always a balancing act and here if you have too much on one end of the sound over the other, that skews the tonal balance to swing either dark, warmth neutral, cold or bright sounding. The 10th treble tuning seems deliberate to bring the treble end to counter the punchy bass end and that is what we have on the 10th. The 10th actually has more treble emphasis than most Penon tuned IEMs actually and that was a bit of a surprise but not enough to cause a skew in its tonality or are the trebles tuned to cause any fatigue. Penon always uses a dip in the sensitive 6-7khz region and we also get that on the 10th. This intentional dip smooths out vocal edginess and a smoother tonal character for trebles. While some micro detailing will be less emphasized the plus there is vocals and strings will not sound so edgy in the process.

Its extension for trebles using 2ESTs are heard and cohesion between lower to mid trebles with the Knowles BA handling the bulk of the trebles is fluid in execution. Penon has plenty of practice utilizing the Sonion ESTs so you better believe they will bring their A game on an IEM called the 10th. With plenty of sparkly extended trebles on hand its treble tuning is emphasized but non fatiguing at the same time. Penon has higher end IEMs that have better more balanced treble with better extension but for what they wanted to achieve in the new V shaped tuning on the 10th. I say the treble will surprise the Penon patron as it does have a bit more emphasis than you're used to.

Penon being edgy is what that is.

Mids the soul of the sound comes from a single mid range Sonion BA. It is no secret Penon loves their Sonion BAs. You can say the basis for their house sound comes from the tonal character of the Sonion BA. Sound descriptors like rich, full bodied, fluid are all associated with the Sonion BA. It's also not a secret that some of the highest end IEMs use Sonion BAs including Penons own flagship IEMs the Impacts. Focusing a single sound bore channel to your years dedicated for the full force of this premium single BA for its mids, you're getting a good taste of the Penon sound and that richer tonal character is clearly evident in the 10th. Here is the main difference between its older brother the Volts and the 10th. Volts uses two BAs for its mids which gives some added extra body and dimensional character. The 10th while not as fleshed out like the Volts mids presentation does more than an ample job in reproducing the mids characteristics for the Penon sound. It's got a broad mids presentation that you can hear which leads to excellent sound separation and a broad imaging in space. This ends up being highly addictive if not out right euphoric to listen to.

10th is not an extreme V shaped tuning but sounds more like a mild v in how its sound emanates, meaning you will get your full mids going on. It might not be as forward sounding as something like the Fan2, or even the Volts but its forwardness is roughly neutral in execution meaning it doesn’t sound forward or does it sound recessed. But then you get that impeccable imaging of the 10s broad mids character and you get one immersive sound experience. The BA chosen by Penon being a Sonion BA is more than up to the task of representing your music in full bloom. Its mids character is in true Penon fashion, has good note and body to its sound. While the dimensional character is not exactly at the higher tier level from Penons own IEMs. The mids are represented well which also includes some excellent presentation for vocals.

Female vocals especially sound phenomenal on the 10th. Male vocals come through with clarity and authority. With a nice broad mids presentation of the 10th, its dynamic range is clearly heard and has one of the better timbre aspects when it comes to instruments and for vocals. Outstanding imaging is always associated with a Penon product, and this broad imaging is something to behold on the 10ths sound presentation. Its cohesion between the 3 types of drivers is very fluid in execution as there is no one part that stands out above the others for its sound. Penon hears the wants of its patrons and so they brought out the bass.

Bass end of the 10th is reproduced by utilizing two micro 6mm crystal plated bio dynamics. These drivers were first used on Penons own Fan2 Iems which also uses two 6mm dynamics for its bass. However the bass end for the Fan2 while ample in support is not exactly what the 10th here does. Penon boosted the bass end to show off what these smaller dynamics can do in unison. With surprising presence, impact and sub bass rumble both the 6mm drives are used together to mimic a much larger bass dynamic. When space inside a medium resin shell is at a premium. Why not utilize some very capable smaller dynamics. No secret the dynamic driver for IEMs reproduce a more realistic bass note and here the 10th has some nicely done notable elevation for its bass end at about 6 dbs for its mid bass and a health increase to roughly 8 for its sub bass. What that nice increase of bass gets you is a full punch.

Surprising what a 6mm micro dynamic can do for bass and it has a twin brother that will back him up. Feels more like the work of a 12mm dynamic, better yet it is basically two well placed smaller subs doing the full work of a larger sub. Any way you cut it, the bass end has got some top sirloin beef to its tone and presence. Bio dynamics have a reputation of providing an organic bass overtone with some deep textured rumble. We get that with the 10th as it is boosted towards its neathers. While the mid bass is not as brawny as its sub bass it still has a feisty bass impact that delivers the goods when called upon. Another aspect of using some smaller sized powerhouse dynamics is that they are much less prone to ear pressure/ driver flex. None perceived on my end.

From what I understand about adding a crystal film or coating on top of a bio dynamic is that this mitigates the waning of the bio dynamic. Apparently, bio dynamics have a tendency to lose their bounce and effectiveness of the bass note over time. Hence the need for the “crystalline plating” which means the 10th and the Fan 2 both have an upgraded bio dynamic. Don’t know about you but upgrading anything is good in the industry if you know what I mean. Bass is tight and speedy here and has a clean punchy to textured rumbly quality to it. Since both these dynamics are taxed with the purpose of being a woofer only for the bass with the bass end getting its own sound tubing to the ear. The 10th mids are clean vs the bass presentation which is a bit short of being fully basshead/ definitely elevated. This is about an audiophile bass as it gets as it's not going to win the shake your eyeball contest nor does it have the impact of the brawniest bass notes. But it does do bass genres justice. And isn't that what a v shaped tuning should be about? The 10th can be described as a tasteful V shaped, a musical V shaped. The look from your smile as your listening to them. Bass is very capable, has a good solid realistic tone and digs deep. If you thought the bass of the prior Penon IEMs needed just a bit more so in quantity. That is what your getting from the 10th

In the end
The 10th delivers on so many fronts. It’s got some of Penons best dynamic sound tuning. This one leans a bit more on the fun factor of why we listen to IEMs in the first place. Being entertained is never a bad thing for our hobby hence Penons version of the V tuning. Its technicalities are outstanding for its wider than average sound presentation. Its detail level is what you would expect coming from a Penon made product and this is the set you want to be using when out and about. Being immersed in your music wherever you may be is the advantage of the IEM and with the 10th it is all about the sound immersion. If you have never tried a Penon made IEM I can’t think of a better example than the 10th. It is a conglomeration of so many of their IEMs in one with the fun tuning angle that becomes the 10th anniversary. This is how you make a tonally and technically correct tribrid. Penon alway has a clear direction in how they tune and make IEMs. This is a class leading tribrid for its price point and they wouldn’t have it any other way. Thanks for taking the time to read.

Bonus and this was the section 10th owners have been asking. What is a good cable match up they ask. You shall receive. If you feel cables don’t do squat than you shouldn’t be reading this section but if you're the type that want that bit of extra, you can squeeze out of your 10th via cables this is for you.

1st up is the ISN G4.
No secret I have been using the G4 on the 10th the most. Its a $100 cable you can buy here. The G4 cable uses a higher end OCC copper for its base but has a silverplating with some graphene infusion. These cables while not as resolving as Penons own OSG cable, have their own set of advantages when connected to the 10th. These cables enhance the imaging aspect for the 10th. Enhances a natural stage expansion, adds a greater noteweight which results in better dynamics from the 10th. Excellent match up with the 10th in every way. The G4 is basically an upgraded cable that came with the 10th the Penon CS819 in what it does. Highly recommended if you want to enhance and highlight the 10ths dynamic aspects its technical aspects like imaging and definition. The G4 maximizes the sound from the 10th.


2nd is another $100 cable in the Penon Space. You can look up here.
The Penon Space is a silver plated OFC cable but one with a lot of shares per core of its make up. What that gets you is greater height, depth and stage for the 10th. Its fairly neutral in sound enhancing and while it does not necessarily enhance the 10ths imaging like the G4. It more than makes up for it with the fuller, more spacious sound for the 10th. These cables are yet another great matchup as it gives the 10th a slightly warmer smoother tilt making them sound even more closer to something like the old Penon Globe and aspects of the Volts full bodied mids presentation. If you want the 10th with a greater body of sound in general. It is the space cables that will help you achieve that to a greater extent than the G4 mentioned above..This is yet another excellent pairing. The overall tonal character is slightly smoother with some added natural warmth. Very good on the 10th.

3rd is the Penon Obsidian. @$149 can be found here.
The Penon Obsidian is one of Penons best copper based cables, 4 cores of OCC with a few cores that have an 18K gold plating. Even though this is the cable that came with the Penon Impacts these are pretty much the same cables that Penon sells at retail but in all black. The Obsidian is all about the dynamism of the 10th. This cable brings out the absolute best of the bass and the mids. The 10th is a clean sounding IEM due to the ample treble emphasis and hence a bit of gold plating adds a slight darkening effect to tonal character on the 10th. This in turn makes the 10th sound richer, more bodied and while the stage element is bested by the Space and better with the ISN G4. The other cables don’t make the 10th sound richer and meatier like the Obsidian. The trebles even get a bit of a rounding effect. If you want the absolute best bass a full bodied rich tonal character for your 10th the Obsidian is a compelling addition on the 10th. Yet another great match up. This time bringing a superb dynamic enhancing effect on the 10th. You love your bass and musicality. Can’t go wrong with the Obsidian cable.
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Nice review, I would like to know how the new plastic nozzle influenced the sound over the fan2 one ( better image? Excluding the est addition) .( To modify: Knowles on mid highs).
Great review as always Dnuts and thank you for your help i ordered the 10th AE and cannit wait for it to arrive.
Great product ! Nice Review ! Thanks 👍