More music from your fave idols in different formations, what's not to love?
14 Mar 2018 - 11:57 AM  UPDATED 14 Mar 2018 - 11:58 AM

Sub-units play an important role in K-pop: they allow idols to flex their talents outside of their groups while still being part of them. This can give idols who have specific talents time to really shine and show fans a new side to themselves.

With so many impressive sub-units making great music, we chose some of the ones to which we think you should be giving love.


EXO's Chen, Baekhyun and Xiumin: three dynamite vocalists making wildly catchy pop tunes in Korean and Japanese.

2. GD & TOP

When it comes to rap duos, it's hard to go past BIGBANG's G-Dragon and T.O.P: two super cool guys making music that goes beyond trends to become instant classics. Their comeback single in 2015, "Zutter", sold over a million copies. We can't wait for their return after military duty.

3. Infinite-H

The hip-hop focused project from Infinite's Dongwoo and Hoya debuted in 2013 and had great success with "Special Girl".

4. Orange Caramel

A sub-unit born out of After School, they were wildly successful with their catchy and kooky songs and matching music videos. We need a comeback!

5. Troublemaker

This was a surprising combo: Hyunseung (BEAST) and Hyuna (4MINUTE) came together for the 2011 Mnet Asian Music Awards where their on-stage kiss set the internet alight. Their songs were massive hits on the Korean charts, especially "Troublemaker".

6. TaeTiSeo

TaeTiSeo is Girls' Generation's Taeyeon, Tiffany and Seohyun, and the sub-unit came about while other members were pursuing acting and television opportunities. These three members wanted to keep singing, and the public wanted to hear it, because they became the first sub-unit to win a trple crown on music shows!


A duo made up of VIXX members Leo and Ravi, they're the perfect balance between vocals and rap. Their debut EP "Beautiful Liar" did incredibly well for a sub-unit and they even won on music shows.

8. NCT U

Look, technically all of NCT is made up of sub-units and we could be here all day telling you about each of them. But for now we'll stick to NCT U, who have a flexible line-up. They debuted with five members, which has now expanded to seven, and who knows how many next!


Made up of SISTAR members Hyolyn and Bora, their singles were huge successes, including debut tune "Ma Boy" that went straight to number one.

10. Super Junior K.R.Y.

Another group with multiple sub-units, this one is a powerful combo of vocalists Kyuhyun, Ryeowook and Yesung. This sub-unit came about as a way to give more attention to lesser known members of Super Junior, who had 13 members at the time, and it definitely worked. They even held their own concert with a 22,000+ strong crowd in 2010.

11. SEVENTEEN Hip-Hop Team

With their last release, SEVENTEEN shared songs from different teams within the group: Performance, Hip-Hop, Leaders and Vocal. "Trauma" was the hip-hop team's contribution and it's racked up over 8 million views on YouTube since its release. This unit is made up of S Coups, Wonwoo, Mingyu and Vernon.

12. Nasty Nasty

A sub-unit that actually combines members of two groups, it includes SBS PopAsia's very own Kevin Kim! ZE:A and Nine Muses came together to form this group, for a unique co-ed sub-unit.


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