K-Pop groups as a whole are amazing; they make music and concepts well-suited to them, giving them a whole new vibe that’s unique to them. But members sometimes form subunits within their groups or crossover units between label mates, and create completely different, yet still mesmerizing personas that appeal to their fans by encouraging them to listen to something new!
Here are 10+ of the greatest idol group subunits ever made!
1) Orange Caramel
The first subunit from the group After School, Orange Caramel consisted of 3 members: Nana, Raina and Lizzy. The unit debuted on June 16, 2010, with the single “Magic Girl” and their first mini album titled The First Mini Album released on June 21. The unit made waves across K-Pop for their bizarre concepts with the loud and hilarious outfits, as well as their extremely entertaining and catchy songs. The produced hit after hit, including songs such as “Catellena”, “Lipstick” and “My Copycat”.
The subunit has unofficially disbanded, given that both Raina and Lizzy have left After School and Pledis Entertainment, with Nana being the only member still with the company. Nevertheless, since there has not been an official statement, fans still hope for the possibility of a reunion someday!
2) Girls Generation-TTS
TTS is the first subunit from iconic girl group Girls’ Generation, and is comprised of members Taeyeon, Tiffany and Seohyun. SM Entertainment put the members together to create a more vocally-focused group, and the unit debuted on April 24, 2012, with the mini album Twinkle and a title track of the same name.
The group is currently on hiatus, as the members of Girls Generation are currently pursuing solo endeavors. Tiffany and Seohyun have also left SM Entertainment, making the reunion of the group slightly more difficult, but fans are optimistic and excited about their return as a unit one day!
3) Super Junior K.R.Y.
Super Junior K.R.Y are the first subunit from Super Junior, and consists of the members Kyuhyun, Ryeowook and Yesung, all main vocalists of Super Junior. The unit debuted on November 5, 2006 with the single “The One I Love”, which they originally released as an OST for the tvN drama Hyena.
The subunit was on hiatus while the members were completing their mandatory military service, but with the return of maknae Kyuhyun in May 2019, they had their first performance in 4 years on July 13, 2019! Their most recent performance was at Taoyuan New Year’s Eve stage in Taiwan on December 31, 2019.
4) Super Junior D&E
Another Super Junior subunit, Super Junior D&E is the fifth official subunit of Super Junior, and consists of members Donghae and Eunhyuk. As the K.R.Y subunit was more vocal-focused, this unit plays more on Donghae and Eunhyuk’s strong dance abilities as a duo. They debuted on December 16, 2011 with the single “Oppa, Oppa”.
After completing their mandatory military service in 2017, the subunit has been active since, releasing their most recent album Danger with a title track of the same name on April 14, 2019.
5) LOONA Odd Eye Circle
LOONA as a group are comprised of 12 members, who are then also split up into 3 subunits. LOONA Odd Eye Circle is the second subunit from the group, and is comprised of JinSoul, KimLip and Choerry. The unit debuted on September 21, 2017 with he mini album Mix & Match and title track “Girl Front”.
The unit is currently inactive, ever since the official debut of LOONA as a whole group, with the members focusing on group promotions instead.
6) AOA Cream
AOA Cream is the second subunit from AOA, consisting of members Yuna, Hyejeong and Chanmi. The group debuted on February 11, 2016 with the single “I’m Jelly, Baby”.
The group has since not had any activities, with the members focusing on group promotions.
EXO-CBX is the first subunit of EXO, comprised of members Chen, Baekhyun and Xiumin. They debuted on October 31, 2016 with the mini album Hey Mama! and a title track of the same name.
The group’s last Korean release was “Blooming Days” released on April 10, 2018.
8) NCT U
NCT as a group is comprised of many subunits. NCT U was the first unit to debut, and consisted of members Taeyong, Doyoung, Taeil, Jaehyun, Mark and Ten, with the unofficial inclusion of Kun in the Chinese version of “Without You”. They debuted on April 9, 2016, with 2 singles; “The 7th Sense”, and “Without You”.
NCT U is a rotational unit, where the lineup keeps changing depending on the comeback. The last official comeback of NCT U was with “Boss”, which featured Taeyong, Mark, Doyoung, Jaehyun, Winwin, Lucas and Jungwoo.
The unit recently released a single via SM Station with a new lineup; Taeil, Doyoung, Jaehyun and Haechan.
9) Trouble Maker
Trouble Maker was a co-ed subunit formed by CUBE Entertainment, and consisted of Hyuna and former BEAST member Jang Hyunseung, who were label mates at the time. The duo debuted with their eponymously titled mini album and title track on December 1, 2011.
The subunit has effectively disbanded, following Hyuna’s departure from CUBE Entertainment in 2018. Their last release was the album Chemistry and title track “Now”.
MOBB was a subunit formed by YG Entertainment, and consisted of WINNER‘s Song Mino and iKON‘s Bobby. The duo released their mini album titled The Mobb on September 8, 2016, and the duo’s MVs for “FULLHOUSE” and “Hit Me” were released on September 9.
In 2017, Mino revealed that MOBB will never have a comeback, due to Yang Hyun Suk being disappointed at their low sales. The duo’s profile was removed from the website in 2019, thus officially confirming their disbandment.
11) Triple H
Triple H was another co-ed unit formed by CUBE Entertainment in 2017, made up of Hyuna, PENTAGON‘s Hui, and former PENTAGON member E’DAWN (now DAWN). The group debuted on May 1, 2017 with the album 199X and titled track “365 Fresh”.
The group disbanded with the departures of Hyuna and DAWN from CUBE Entertainment, following the announcement that the two were dating. Their last release was with “Retro Future” in 2018.
12) GD x Taeyang
GD X Taeyang is a duo formed by BIGBANG members G-Dragon and Taeyang under YG Entertainment in 2014.
The duo, also known as GDYB, has so far officially only released one single in 2014, “Good Boy”.
13) AOA Black
AOA Black is the first subunit of AOA, and follows a band concept. The members in the subunit currently are Jimin and Yuna. Youkyung, the drummer, announced that she had left the group in 2016, but would be a guest member for any of AOA Black’s future performances. In June 2017, FNC Entertainment officially announced Choa‘s departure from the group, and in May 2019, Kwon Mina left the group as well.
The group debuted on July 26, 2013, with the single “Moya”.
14) BOM & Hi
BOM & Hi was a unit formed by YG Entertainment, and consisted of former 2NE1 member Park Bom and soloist Lee Hi. The group had only one release, a cover of Mariah Carey‘s “All I Want For Christmas Is You” on December 17, 2013, but fans were in love with it!
The group disbanded when Park Bom left YG Entertainment in 2017. Lee Hi also departed from the agency in 2019.
Which is your favorite subunit?
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