Today we review the new ThieAudio Prestige LTD Flagship IEM, retailing for $1,299 USD.
Disclaimer: ThieAudio Prestige LTD was provided by Linsoul for the purpose of this review, at no cost. As always, the article reflects my unbiased opinion.
ThieAudio is a company that specializes in the research & development of audiophile in-ear monitors as well as headphones. The brand was established in 2019 as a creative endeavor by Linsoul. According to their statement, their goal is to serve as a creative platform by bringing together the best teams of engineers to design & manufacture high-performance, high-end audiophile products. Their statement continues by saying that they hand-select the most innovative and renowned engineers in their respective fields to oversee product design, engineering, and manufacturing for each project. In a brief period of time, they managed to become a distinguished company that designs products for every price range on the market. Today, we are looking at the new and revised version of their flagship offering Prestige, the Prestige LTD.
You can find the rest of our ThieAudio reviews, here.
ThieAudio Prestige LTD Flagship Tribrid IEM
The Prestige LTD is ThieAudio’s latest tribrid in-ear monitor priced at $1,299 USD from Linsoul, featuring a configuration of 1 dynamic driver, 4 balanced armatures, and 4 electrostatic drivers. This updated version is tuned to offer a more balanced and refined sound signature with a smoother treble. ThieAudio keeps a close eye on the feedback it receives from its fan base and acts upon it, which is quite impressive in the Chi-Fi sphere. Each Prestige LTD is handcrafted with medical-grade resin and comes with a complex 5-way crossover using top-tier components from around the world. With its modified tuning, the Prestige LTD aims to provide a more comfortable, yet technically proficient listening experience. We’ll see whether that is the case or not, together.
- Driver Configuration: 10mm DD + x4 BA + x4 EST
- Crossover: 5-way Crossover
- Socket: 2-Pin, 0.78mm
- Housing: Resin Body, Metal Nozzle, Bespoke Faceplate
- Cable: 1.2m, 22 AWG Silver-Plated OCC & Graphene SPC Litz Cable with Modular 2.5/3.5/4.4mm Plugs
- Impedance: 11Ω
- Sensitivity: 95dB @1kHz
Packaging & Accessories
The Prestige LTD comes with ThieAudio’s classic packaging design. Although there are differences in the outer cover from the Prestige OG (first version), there are no marginal design differences. The box is fully padded with foam and consists of two compartments. The earphones come with a hard carrying case with fabric lining, 3 pairs of foam eartips, 3 pairs of silicone eartips, and a modular cable with interchangeable connectors.
The included OCC cable is silver-plated and graphene silver-plated with a modular system. The 3.5mm, 4.4mm, and 2.5mm jacks are included in the package. This cable has the same aesthetic appearance as the cable previously used with the Monarch MKII, OG Prestige, and Monarch MKIII.
The cable has a 4-braid, litz structure. This makes it particularly resistant to corrosion. The interchangeable modular system is similar to a 4-pin mini XLR and feels robust. The plugs and the main connector are textured so they won’t slip out of your hand easily while switching the ends. There’s also a small notch on the inner side of the connector to help users ensure the correct pins are inserted, so you don’t have to find the correct orientation and angle manually. The build quality of the cable is pretty good and it won’t let you down in the long run.
Design, Build & Fit
With the Prestige LTD, ThieAudio continues its series of galaxy-themed designs. Featuring circular supernova-like faceplate art, this model is similar in design to the popular OG Prestige. The shells are crafted from high-quality, medical-grade acrylic resin, and have an opaque body that doesn’t allow any light to pass through. Compared to the original Prestige model, the shell structure and shape remain unchanged. However, the port at the back of the earphone, which stabilizes the shell/DD pressure, has been enlarged.
Overall, the design of the Prestige is quite impressive. The quality and workmanship are also good, as you would expect from ThieAudio. There were no faults to be found in the more complex parts that are difficult to make by hand, such as the joints that connect the nozzle to the shell and the ventilation holes required by the dynamic driver. ThieAudio’s handmade products we reviewed previously were also flawless in these areas, and their QC team deserves praise for this.
When it comes to comfort and fit, the Prestige LTD’s shell size is within the normal size range for a 9-driver product. In comparison, the Monarch MKIII, also with 9 drivers, is thicker and slightly larger than the Prestige LTD. Similarly, the 9-driver Moonlight Ultra has a slightly smaller shell, but the difference is minimal. If you have smaller than average ears, you may find it difficult to get a good fit with these earphones, as my girlfriend does. However, I have a pretty average ear anatomy and I found the Prestige LTD quite comfortable. I did not feel any vacuum effect, pain, or discomfort, even during long listening sessions.
The review continues on the next page. Click here or use the jump below.
Page 1: ThieAudio, The Prestige LTD, Packaging & Accessories, Design, Build & Fit
Page 2: Sound, Low, Mid, High, Technical Capability, Comparisons, Last Words