KEF’s New Wireless Bookshelf Speakers Are Modern Marvels
Audiophiles are an irritable lot, specifically when it comes to wireless speakers. In order to save money, time, or space, audio business will typically take the design of a larger, more pricey device and dumb it down somewhat to make a product thats more accessible, and probably much better for the majority of us. Naturally, audio enthusiasts turn up their noses at such compromises.Until I tried the KEF LS50 Wireless II, I tended to agree with them. Even at the high-end, cord-cutting speakers simply never matched their cabled equivalents. After a month listening to these brand-new KEFs play everything from Sheryl Crow to Stephen Colbert, Ive heard genuine evidence that cables and amps will ultimately go the method of the dodo. KEFs cordless speakers are a nearly best window into the future of high-fidelity audio.Two to TangoThe British business has actually been making speakers considering that the early 1960s, however the large majority of audiophiles understand KEF for its more current designs. The companys exclusive Uni-Q drivers, which install the tweeters concentrically within the midrange speaker, are its modern-day calling card. These flower-like motorists have actually moved the initial LS50 design to near-mythical levels of nerd appeal given that they released in 2012 to commemorate KEFs 50th anniversary.The LS50 Wireless II has the exact same concentric driver style as the initial.
Picture: Kef Never fear, geeks: The brand-new version of the LS50 looks the like the old one. Theyre rounded rectangular shapes with a curved front that showcases the gorgeous drivers. You can get them in many colors, but my review systems was available in an elegant matte black with copper accents.Unlike the passive LS50 Meta speakers, which require a stereo amp to provide the juice, the LS50 Wireless II speakers are self-powered. Plug them into the wall, and to each other, and there are no external amps required.Even without devoted outboard hardware, the back of the right speaker has a hodgepodge of inputs. Youll find an optical input, a coaxial cable television jack, a 3.5-mm mini-jack, and even an HDMI ARC port for TELEVISION– an uncommon feature that makes them outstanding for placement in a living space on either side of a screen. For fully cordless operation, you can match a PC or phone with them using Bluetooth, or include them to your Wi-Fi network for AirPlay, Chromecast, Spotify Connect, or Roon streaming. Controls for all of the above can be adjusted with the consisted of small black remote, or by managing the backlit touch controls on the top of the best speaker.New KEF SoundUnder the hood, the businesss engineers have actually invested a significant quantity of time ensuring that the LS50 Wireless II heartily outshine the original KEF cordless design that came out numerous years ago.The brand-new speakers include what the company calls Metamaterial Absorption Technology, which according to KEF, permits the speakers to take in as much as 60 percent of the distortion-causing energy thats typically shown back into the speaker cabinet. The maze-like structures of this material inside each speaker arent simple to design; it took a two-year research study task with a company called Acoustic Metamaterials Group for the business to develop.The outcomes are less complicated to comprehend than the innovation itself. Switch on the KEF LS50 Wireless II and you are welcomed by the most immersive, distortion-free noise youve probably ever heard from speakers this size. They may look the like their predecessors, however they definitely sound better.The depth and width of the sound stage is considerably enhanced, thanks to that lower distortion down low. Each aspect of the music youre listening to inhabits a practically three-dimensional place in the sound, enabling you to quickly dart focus between them or to hear more plainly how they integrate into the whole.Ive become obsessed with Lucy Dacus brand-new track “Hot & & Heavy,” which builds from synthy pads to full-fledged dance rock over the first minute. On the KEFs, the slow addition of instruments and layers pulls me through the tune, as though Im able to see each aspect of the music through a sharp, clear lens. I can hear precisely where each of Dacus singing consistencies is sitting in the noise, the ideal edge the engineer received from the signal ever so somewhat misshaping when she sings her loudest.
KEFs cordless speakers are a nearly best window into the future of high-fidelity audio.Two to TangoThe British business has been making speakers given that the early 1960s, however the huge majority of audiophiles understand KEF for its more recent designs. You can get them in lots of colors, however my evaluation units came in an elegant matte black with copper accents.Unlike the passive LS50 Meta speakers, which need a stereo amp to supply the juice, the LS50 Wireless II speakers are self-powered. Controls for all of the above can be adjusted with the consisted of small black remote, or by handling the backlit touch controls on the top of the ideal speaker.New KEF SoundUnder the hood, the businesss engineers have spent a substantial amount of time making sure that the LS50 Wireless II heartily outperform the original KEF wireless design that came out several years ago.The new speakers include what the business calls Metamaterial Absorption Technology, which according to KEF, enables the speakers to absorb up to 60 percent of the distortion-causing energy thats typically reflected back into the speaker cabinet. Turn on the KEF LS50 Wireless II and you are welcomed by the most immersive, distortion-free noise youve most likely ever heard from speakers this size.