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UE’s Premier IEMs Feature 21 Drivers?

Just unveiled at NAMM 2023, the UE Premier IEMs feature 21 drivers per earpiece. Expect our review by June of these extraordinary and very expensive in-ear monitors.

UE Premier IEMs with Travel Case

With the risk of being labelled an Ultimate Ears fanboy, I will confess to owning and using multiple pairs of UE Pro IEMs for both casual music listening, recording, and performing. They offer something that is reliable, very well made, and sonically excellent.

The brand started with Alex Van Halen as its first customer back in 1995 and that list has grown to include Adele, Toni Braxton, Rod Stewart, Keb Mo, Miranda Lambert, Kanye, and Zakk Wylde. Musicians all over the world trust their products for live shows and they are also very popular in houses of worship, recording studios, and with mainstream listeners.

UE Premier IEM

When we started hearing rumors about the forthcoming UE Premier IEMs, we reached out to their marketing team and were told that they would be unveiled at this week’s NAMM 2023 Show.

The Premier will retail for $2,999.95 USD and build on the existing UE18 Pro and UE Live IEMs that have been hugely successful for the brand and remain very popular with musicians.

UE Premier IEMs

The new UE Premier shares a similar earshell to the existing models with bespoke construction (requiring ear molds or a 3D model provided for fitting). The shells are 3D printed and then hand finished to ensure proper fit and comfort.    

UE Premier IEM Side Sliver

The buyer has the option of various colors for the body and face plates as well as a number of different materials including exotic woods. The switch technology (added cost option) allows users to change faceplates for different occasions, moods, or bands, and for those who want the ultimate faceplate, there is even a collaboration with Jewelry designer, Sonny Blaze (CODA), that offers almost any design imaginable in gold, silver, platinum and the customer’s choice of gemstones.   

Having seen 3 of Blaze’s designs in-person, the quality of the craftsmanship is second-to-none and it really does turn a state-of-the-art IEM into a very personalized object of art.

UE Premier IEM Faceplates

Each earpiece integrates 21 drivers allowing the Premier to extend from 5Hz at the low end to a remarkable 40kHz at the top, but UE is quick to point out that the Premier is more about what happens between those extremes.   

UE is marketing the Premier IEMs as the “most powerful, nuanced, and versatile in-ear monitors offered.”

We know it’s hard to take marketing spiel at face value but UE has a rather strong track record of backing up its claims.  

At the bottom end, the UE Premier uses a pair of a dual sub-low drivers followed by a quartet of mid-low drivers. Likewise, the midrange uses a quad-driver to deliver the resolution, clarity, detail, and timbral accuracy that users will demand in this range.

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UE Premier IEM Kit

The top end uses five of UE Pro’s proprietary True Tone drivers in combination with Knowles’ Quad Super tweeter to help the Premier reproduce every detail and harmonic all the way to 40kHz. The arrangement is 21 drivers split into 5 groups with a five-way passive crossover managing the transitions between.  

We expect our review sample to arrive in late-May or early June but we’re fascinated to hear how these compare to the UE Live that are one of the best IEMs you can currently buy. You can read my review of these superlative IEMs here and it will be interesting to hear how this new driver configuration combined with some of the best DAPs and desktop headphone systems available delivers.

Considering the the $3,000 asking price — the UE Premier will have to be excellent to warrant a recommendation over the UE Live.

UE Premier IEM Black with Cable
UE Premier IEM Black Gold

The UE Premier is available for order now at in the USA and internationally through Ultimate Ears Pro’s dealer distribution network for $2,999.

Orders will begin shipping on May 15, 2023.

Related reading: UE Live IEM Review + UE Switch Faceplates



  1. The TN

    July 26, 2023 at 12:14 am

    Hey guys, Have you had a chance to properly review these yet? Eagerly awaiting some thoughts. Thanks

    • Ian White

      July 26, 2023 at 12:45 am


      Coming next week from Will.

      Ian White

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