Audiophiles are a prickly lot, especially when it comes to cordless speakers. In order to conserve space, time, or cash, audio business will typically take the design of a larger, more pricey gadget and dumb it down a little to make an item thats more accessible, and most likely better for the majority of us. Of course, audio enthusiasts show up their noses at such compromises.Until I tried the KEF LS50 Wireless II, I tended to concur with them. Even at the high-end, cord-cutting speakers just never matched their cabled counterparts. But after a month listening to these new KEFs play everything from Sheryl Crow to Stephen Colbert, Ive heard genuine evidence that cables and amps will eventually go the way of the dodo. KEFs cordless speakers are a nearly ideal window into the future of high-fidelity audio.Two to TangoThe British company has actually been making speakers since the early 1960s, but the huge bulk of audiophiles know KEF for its more current styles. The businesss proprietary Uni-Q motorists, which install the tweeters concentrically within the midrange speaker, are its modern calling card. These flower-like chauffeurs have actually propelled the original LS50 model to near-mythical levels of nerd appeal considering that they launched in 2012 to commemorate KEFs 50th anniversary.The LS50 Wireless II has the same concentric motorist style as the initial.
Picture: Kef Never fear, nerds: The new variation of the LS50 looks the same as the old one. Theyre rounded rectangular shapes with a curved front that showcases the beautiful drivers. You can get them in numerous colors, but my evaluation systems can be found in a sophisticated matte black with copper accents.Unlike the passive LS50 Meta speakers, which require a stereo amp to supply 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 ideal speaker has an assortment of inputs. Youll discover 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 excellent for positioning in a living-room on either side of a screen. For fully wireless 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 changed with the included small black remote, or by dealing with the backlit touch controls on the top of the ideal speaker.New KEF SoundUnder the hood, the businesss engineers have invested a considerable quantity of time ensuring that the LS50 Wireless II heartily surpass the original KEF cordless model that came out a number of years ago.The new speakers feature what the business calls Metamaterial Absorption Technology, which according to KEF, allows the speakers to take in up to 60 percent of the distortion-causing energy thats usually reflected back into the speaker cabinet. The maze-like structures of this product inside each speaker arent easy to style; it took a two-year research study job with a business called Acoustic Metamaterials Group for the business to develop.The results are less made complex to understand than the innovation itself. Turn on the KEF LS50 Wireless II and you are greeted by the most immersive, distortion-free sound youve most likely ever heard from speakers this size. They might look the very same as their predecessors, however they definitely sound better.The depth and width of the sound stage is significantly improved, thanks to that lower distortion down low. Each element of the music youre listening to occupies an almost three-dimensional location in the sound, enabling you to easily dart focus between them or to hear more clearly how they integrate into the whole.Ive become obsessed with Lucy Dacus 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 song, as though Im able to see each aspect of the music through a sharp, clear lens. I can hear exactly where each of Dacus singing harmonies is sitting in the sound, the ideal edge the engineer obtained from the signal ever so somewhat misshaping when she sings her loudest.
KEFs cordless speakers are an almost best window into the future of high-fidelity audio.Two to TangoThe British business has been making speakers considering that the early 1960s, but the vast majority of audiophiles understand KEF for its more recent designs. You can get them in many colors, but my review systems came in a sophisticated 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. Controls for all of the above can be changed with the included small black remote, or by managing the backlit touch controls on the top of the ideal speaker.New KEF SoundUnder the hood, the businesss engineers have actually spent a considerable amount of time guaranteeing that the LS50 Wireless II heartily outshine the original KEF cordless design that came out numerous years ago.The brand-new speakers feature what the business calls Metamaterial Absorption Technology, which according to KEF, allows the speakers to absorb up to 60 percent of the distortion-causing energy thats usually reflected back into the speaker cabinet. Turn on the KEF LS50 Wireless II and you are welcomed by the most immersive, distortion-free sound youve most likely ever heard from speakers this size.