I haven’t yet gotten the chance to review one of 64 Audio’s IEMs, but I did have the pleasure of working their booth at CanJam, and I have to say this much: if I had to pick one single IEM that I would consider “endgame,” the 64 Audio U18t would be it. They impressed me with their well-balanced, spacious presentation of sounds. And they had character – a kind of light airiness that I found addictive. Yes, they’re $3,000, but they were also the best IEMs I had ever heard.
Now, the U18t has another sibling. The 64 Audio A18s is a new custom variant of 64 Audio’s 18-driver model, intended to be used primarily by stage performers (the “s” stands for “stage”). As such, it adapts to some of the particular problems associated with stage equipment.
First, the A18s incorporate’s 64 Audio’s new LID technology. This means that it’ll be able to adapt to sources of varying output impedance. Headphones and IEMs will typically react to a high-impedance source by significantly altering their frequency response, usually becoming warmer and mushier-sounding. This would’ve been a problem for the A18t, but not for the A18s.
This is especially relevant for performers who will be plugging their IEMs into mic packs and such. These sources are often suboptimal for low-impedance IEMs, and the A18s intends to solve that problem.
The A18s boasts a slightly lower impedance and higher sensitivity than the A18t as well, meaning it’ll reach a louder listening volume off of low-power mic packs.
For audiophiles, the most notable change comes in the form of a slight boosted low end. The A18t/U18t has great, solid bass, but some find it a bit light for their tastes. For those who want the rich, airy sound of the A18t/U18t with a slightly warmer, more impactful bass response, the A18s will be a perfect match.
How Do I Get a Pair?
The 64 Audio A18s will cost $3,000, the same as the U18t and the A18t. In order to get a pair, you’ll need impressions of your ear done by a professional audiologist. See 64 Audio’s guide on how to order for more details.