Introduction

NS Audio is a Chinese company that specializes in in-ear monitors (IEMs). After the success of their first iem in the NS-1, they proceed on to launch their latest iem which is the NS-2 Composer. I would like to thank NS Audio and Penon for the review unit of the NS-2 Composer. At the moment, you can purchase the NS-2 Composer from https://penonaudio.com/ns-audio-ns-2-composer .

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Specifications

  • Driver Configuration: 2 Balanced Armature
  • Impedance: 75Ω
  • Frequency response: 10-40000 Hz
  • Sensitivity: 110dB@1K Hz
  • Distortion :THD<0.5% (@100-10Khz)

Unboxing & Accessories

The NS-2 Composer comes in a wooden box that sports the brand name. After opening the package, there is the iem, instruction manual, pack of tips, ear guides and leather case.

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IEM Build & Design

The NS-2 Composer uses 3D printed custom shells and there is a smooth surface. On the left faceplate, there is the model name printed in silver color while on the right faceplate, there is the brand name printed in silver color. The shell is white in color. The nozzle is slightly angled without metal mesh. The NS-2 Composer has an ergonomic design with a comfortable fit.

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Cable Build & Design

The cable has a 2 core design and it is made of silver plated copper (4N OFC). It has 0.78mm 2 pins angled connectors. Each connector has an translucent clear housing. There are L & R markings on the left and right side respectively for differentiation. There is no memory wire section. The chin slider and y-splitter are silver in colour with the brand name printed on the y-splitter. Lastly, the jack is 3.5mm gold plated straight with strain relief. It has a silver housing.

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Sound Analysis

Lows

The NS-2 Composer has moderate sub-bass quantity and the extension is slightly lacking. The sub-bass reproduction is quite controlled and the rumble is natural. The bass texture on the NS-2 Composer is rendered smoothly while the bass decay lacks pace and results in a lower engagement level. The mid-bass has moderate quantity with a relaxed slam. The bass is not hard-hitting and takes on a polite approach. It is a soothing listen although the excitement might be lacking for some.

Mids

The midrange is presented in a natural manner and the presentation provides good composure. It has sufficient body to tackle vocals. There are no signs of hollowness. The lower mids has a moderate amount of body and male vocals are expressed well without sounding too thick. The upper mids is not very forward and the liveliness takes a step back. Female vocals are presented in an enjoyable manner with moderate engagement. There is a good execution of finesse. The details retrieval has a great standard.

Highs

The treble extends moderately and the presentation is dark. There is no sibilance and harshness. There is a smooth treble expression which results in a soothing listen. The crisp is moderate and there is lack of sparkle. The amount of air is moderate and offers space to prevent the sound from being too dense. Details are presented well.

Soundstage

The soundstage expands in a natural manner and the width magnitude is moderate. The depth is slightly closed in to offer intimacy. The positioning of vocals and instruments is rather precise. There is slight congestion when tackling busier tracks.

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Comparisons

NS-2 Composer vs InEar StageDiver SD-2

The SD-2 has slightly more sub-bass than the NS2 Composer with a greater extension. Its sub-bass reproduction has the ability to deliver extra kick for an impactful performance. The bass texture on both is rendered smoothly and it is relaxing to listen to. Bass decay on the SD-2 is more pacey and the additional agility helps to increase the overall engagement. The mid-bass on the NS-2 Composer has more body with the slam having a weighted feeling. Rumble on the NS-2 Composer is more natural. Each bass note on both is articulated with a smooth hit. The lower mids on the NS-2 Composer has more body than the SD-2 and it sounds more full-bodied. Male vocals are better expressed. The upper mids on the SD-2 has more forwardness without being too aggressive and female vocals sound more intimate. The midrange on both has good cleanliness. The treble on the SD-2 is slightly more extended. There is no sibilance and harshness. The amount of air on the SD-2 is greater. There is a smooth presentation for both iems. Lastly, in terms of soundstage, there is a natural expansion for both. The width magnitude for the SD-2 is slightly greater while the depth on the NS-2 Composer is closed in.

NS-2 Composer vs CTM VS-2

The VS-2 has more sub-bass quantity than the NS-2 Composer but it extends less. There is a fuller sub-bass reproduction on the VS-2. The rumble on the NS-2 Composer has more pace and it improves the engagement level. The bass texture on the NS-2 Composer is rendered with additional smoothness. Bass decay on the NS-2 Composer has similar speed as the VS-2. The mid-bass quantity on the VS-2 is slightly more and it improves the slam. Each bass note on the VS-2 is articulated with extra strength. The lower mids on the VS-2 has more body and it is able to tackle male vocals more effectively. There is additional lushness. The upper mids on the NS-2 Composer has more forwardness with a higher level of definition. Female vocals are presented with a good control on the NS-2 Composer whilst still maintaining the intimacy level. Next, in the treble department, the NS-2 Composer is able to render a greater amount of air. There is no sibilance and harshness. The extension on both is similar. The NS-2 Composer has slightly more technicality. Lastly, in terms of soundstage, the NS-2 Composer expands in a more natural manner. The width magnitude is greater on the NS-2 Composer while the depth of the VS-2 is more closed in.

NS-2 Composer vs Eternal Melody EM-2

The NS-2 Composer has less sub-bass quantity than the EM-2 and the EM-2 is able to extend more than the NS-2 Composer. The EM-2 excels in its sub-bass reproduction and provides a higher engagement level. The mid-bass on the NS-2 Composer has slightly more body than the EM-2 and it is able to deliver a weighted slam. The EM-2 has a greater bass decay and the agility increases the overall pace. Bass texture on the NS-2 Composer is rendered more smoothly. The lower mids on the NS-2 Composer has more body and male vocals are presented with more thickness. The upper mids on the EM-2 has extra forwardness and this helps to create an intimate female vocals presentation. The midrange on the EM-2 has a higher level of transparency with better cleanliness. Moving on to the treble section, the EM-2 is slightly more extended while the NS-2 Composer is able to present the treble with additional smoothness. The amount of air rendered is slightly more on the EM-2. For soundstage, both can create a natural expansion while the EM-2 excels in the width magnitude. The NS-2 has a more closed in depth.

Conclusion

The NS-2 Composer is a dark sounding iem that is capable of  producing a smooth fatigue-free sound that ensures a relaxing listen. It commands a good level of details retrieval with naturalness. Moreover, it has an ergonomic design and comes in a nice package. The NS-2 Composer by NS Audio is an enjoyable iem to listen to.

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