Official Kef LS50 owners thread

Discussion in 'New Gear - Values' started by canuckaudiog, Feb 11, 2014.

  1. canuckaudiog

    canuckaudiog On a quest for high fidelity

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    OK so since there's a good bunch of us who own these or are thinking about owning them, let's put our opinions and thoughts in one place to discuss this excellent speaker. :)

    Put up some pictures of your listening space too!

    Here's a slightly old one of mine:

    [​IMG]

    I'll snap a new one tonight with the new stands and the 107s out of the room.
     

     

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  2. canuckaudiog

    canuckaudiog On a quest for high fidelity

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    Here are some comments I made on the sound of the LS50 from my other thread:

    Well I've been enjoying them for a couple of hours.

    First impressions are these are great little speakers. I was surprised by the amount of bass these put out, they certainly sound bigger than their size suggests. I believe this loaner pair is broken in as well since this was the pair they used for demonstrations at the store.

    My first concern with these was the synergy they would present with the rest of my gear, like I mentioned before. I don't feel like there is anything wrong in this regard - it sounds like the Marantz, the DSPeaker and the Kefs are singing along great. I do think that the Kefs might benefit from a more robust 4-ohm rated amplifier, but like this it sounds excellent. At least, I don't feel like there's anything significantly wrong.

    I've been listening to a lot of music that I have listened to quite a bit. Alan Parsons, Abba, Adele, Eva Cassidy, Patricia Barber, BB King, Diana Krall, Daft Punk, etc. Again, I am astounded by the vocal clarity these Kefs present. Simply Eva by Eva Cassidy sounds pure and beautiful. I listened to it quite loud and her voice never became piercing or too strong, it sounded amazing! I literally melted into my chair as I was washed over with her beautiful voice.

    I do find these Kefs to be a bit unforgiving when it comes to some recordings, but I think that's OK with me, because they present the excitement and emotion in the music regardless of the quality of the recording. This means for me that even if it sounds a bit gritty or less detailed, I can still enjoy the music because the music itself is good. This is a fairly important quality to point out because some speakers make music rather unenjoyable if the recording suffers - not so with the Kefs, it's still enjoyable.

    Like I mentioned above the bass surprised me. In the store it was being sucked out, for sure (which the owner mentioned). I just didn't know how much and when I got these fired up in my room, the bass really showed itself. It sounds great, I don't feel at all like these absolutely require a subwoofer for the music I listen to, so that's great news for me which means I can worry about a subwoofer until later on. The quality of the bass is rather nice, as well. Not quite as nice as what I have heard with my big floor standing speakers (Kef 107s and IMF RSPM Mk IVs) but it is no slouch at all. For their size, and the fact it is a reflex design, I am really impressed by the quality of the bass.

    Next, like all the reviews indicate, these are well balanced speaker and nothing seems to stand out or really jump out at me. Everything sounds seamless.

    The staging is also very good. I like live recordings for this, and it does give you the sense of a stage being there in front of you and when positioned properly you can easily feel like you are at the show seeing them play live. Now, it's on a pretty small scale as my room is rather small, but that sense of being there is still apparent. I think a great deal of this is lent to the great tweeter these LS50s have, they present a lot of detail which allows the reverberant quality in recordings to be easily heard. This gives the speakers presence which allows you to more easily lose yourself in the music.

    Ah, what else. I'm just enjoying these speakers a whole lot, I don't feel like they are any worse off than any other speakers I have, just different. I really love the way these present music, they're simply fantastic at letting the excitement in the original recording come through which is what is so fun about these. Add in the neutral tonality, great detail resolve, a punch above their size, fantastic midrange and excellent imaging and staging, and you get what makes these award winners.

    I am going to spend more time with them over the weekend and continue to comment. So far I don't have much bad to say about them and mostly great things. I'm pleased they are sounding great with my upstream gear, and I am more pleased that they are sounding great with the type of music I listen to. In fact, these seem to do just as well with blues that they do with pop. It more or less depends on the recording itself, which like I said above with the way these speakers present music, even if the recording suffers the excitement doesn't.

    What wonderful little speakers these are. I think I will be buying a pair, but I will be deciding that in the next couple days when the "new speaker" phase is over.



    All right, 6 hours in, time to report my observations.

    Yeah, I'm really digging these speakers. Going into this I was really not sure what to expect. My wife said it well, "If you had told me you wanted to buy these when we were at the store, I would have said hell no". I could see the potential in these, but I couldn't hear all the qualities these were capable of in the set-up they have them in. The room is somewhat of a sonic disaster, with big vents at the top that sucks the bass out, and the room is set up pretty poorly. Well, OK, it's not as bad as I'm making it out to be, but the difference between that room and mine is pretty big.

    Okay, that aside, I'm really surprised these aren't giving my Marantz a hard time. It's running slightly warmer than it was with the 4 ohm Kef 107s, but hardly anything. It's just a little warm to the touch and this sucker is sitting on carpet (I know I know, I should put it on something that doesn't absorb heat). I figured these were a tougher drive but the Marantz must be a fairly good power amplifier to be running these without issue.

    After 6 hours of listening, zero fatigue. I want to sit here and listen more. They are so exciting to listen to, I'm jamming my foot to the tune on every single song I listen to. There's some magic going on here, that's for sure. I'm also beginning to feel like these are speakers I've been wanting to have for a long time. After 2 years of being in this hobby I've finally been able to realize what it is I like in a stereo in terms of the way it sounds, and these speakers I feel like have a ton of the qualities I've realized I enjoy. That combined with this set-up, my listening tastes, I'm going on a pretty wicked sonic ride.

    In my head I'm going, I am buying these. Then I'm also thinking, no, wait until tomorrow and see what you think. I'm gonna do that but, I think it's pretty well settled that I'm going to buy a set of these. I mean after 6 hours and I still want to keep going, that says a lot. For the first time in a while I'm picking song after song going, "I wonder what this will sound like on these?" and most of it is music I've heard hundreds of times.

    Oh yeah and the vocals. God damn those vocals are just amazing.

    WHEW. OK. Enough gushing from me. I'm gonna continue to listen some more and then tomorrow, I am going to fire it up again and see where we're at.



    A little update, since it's now day #2.

    I always like seeing what happens after a night of sleep because I find that "resets" my memory from the day before, audio-wise. This is a good opportunity to refresh my focus and to see what I hear now.

    Well, it's fairly consistent to what I heard yesterday. Yep. These are freaking sweet speakers. Not exactly the same since I am listening to different music, but still much the same.

    Oh, and I just got the 107s out of here. That made a welcome improvement - sound is more spacious and open sounding and the imaging is more focused too. It was fine before but now even better and more coherent. My wife said the room looks a little empty and I said, "Good!" haha

    I've also decided to try them pointing straight forwards, and it sounds pretty damn good this way. I usually have to toe speakers in to get a focused image but these are imaging well like this. I'm pretty fascinated with the dispersion of these, my 107s could never do this that's for sure.

    I also want to mention, although this isn't a "vintage vs. modern" debate, that although I had to move my 107s out to buy these, I am one happy camper. The 107s are certainly higher quality, but I prefer the voicing of these LS50s. Usually going from what was a $5k MSRP speaker to a $1500 MSRP speaker is going to be a downgrade, but these LS50s sound so good that I don't feel like there's anything left to be desired - in fact, I am happier with these.

    I'm still enjoying the loaner pair, so I can't comment on break-in yet, but I think that's kind of OK with me for now. I'll be getting mine tomorrow, I can't wait!
     
  3. Art K.

    Art K. The Voodoo You Do! Subscriber

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    Good job consolidating this. There are plenty of us so it's nice to have an owners thread here.
     
  4. audiodon

    audiodon AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Should this be in the British forum?
     
  5. canuckaudiog

    canuckaudiog On a quest for high fidelity

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    It could be, technically, but I think it's more appropriate here since most of the discussion around the LS50 has been in this forum.
     
  6. Art K.

    Art K. The Voodoo You Do! Subscriber

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    I think that the Modern forum is the right place. God knows, you put in the British forum and the complaints will start relative to where they are manufactured.
     

     

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  7. BmWr75

    BmWr75 Addicted Member

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    My LS50 set up.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2014
  8. wgb113

    wgb113 Well-Known Member

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    Quick pic:

    [​IMG]

    I've had them for 8 months now and am absolutely smitten. More detailed comments later tonight.

    Bill
     

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  9. Dr. Morbius

    Dr. Morbius I.N.T.E.R.O.C.I.T.O.R.

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    And they certainly aren't crusty enough for the Speakers forum.
     
  10. newworld

    newworld Active Member

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    I feel left out...
     
  11. canuckaudiog

    canuckaudiog On a quest for high fidelity

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    Ahh this is your set-up! I love the room and especially those stands, they go so well with the Kefs.
     

     

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  12. beatcomber

    beatcomber AK Member

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    I've had mine for a week, and I'm pairing them with an RBH sub and a Fisher 400. They get better every day!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  13. livestrong

    livestrong Well-Known Member

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    Bill - I love your space as well. What stands are those? They look perfect with the LS50's!
     
  14. SimplySound

    SimplySound Kent Engineering & Fondry

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    Ahhh, a little olive oil, some oregano... it's all tasty!!! ;)
     
  15. davidro

    davidro Lunatic Member

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    So who's feeding theirs with the largest WPCs?
     
  16. SimplySound

    SimplySound Kent Engineering & Fondry

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    I believe they are Sanus NF24's? These are what I have my IMF's on cut down to 8" or so.
     

     

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  17. ambient

    ambient AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    This thread, inevitably, will lead to bad things....
     
  18. canuckaudiog

    canuckaudiog On a quest for high fidelity

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    It all depends on how you look at it. ;)

    And hey, it was your idea! :D


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  19. canuckaudiog

    canuckaudiog On a quest for high fidelity

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    My power amp is capable of 140 WPC @ 8 ohms, a little more than the highest requirement of 100 watts.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  20. wsissons

    wsissons Super Member

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    Ok I am going say it....... I think if they came in skin color they would look better....Not sure were that came from ...... nice systems guys.
     

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