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Does anyone have experience with the Kef LS50? - Page 13

post #181 of 203
Quote:
Originally Posted by dizzyorange View Post
 

 

Despite being a basshead, I don't like subwoofers.  Actually that's one of the big things that attracted me to the LS50s, that the drivers were concentric—because for some reason (perhaps psychological, or because I sit very close to the speakers) I hear sound coming from each driver separately instead of a cohesive whole.  I don't think I will ever purchase another set of speakers where the tweeter is physically on top of the woofer.  I considered the ClairAudient One for this reason:

 

I realize you're not supposed to be able to localize sounds in the bass region, but systems with subwoofers just don't sound cohesive to me.

 

[...]

I wholeheartedly agree with your attitude toward speakers (well, I'm not a basshead, and I'm still nervous about the two-way system of the LS50), so I'm curious... you chose LS50s over the Audience 'The One' speakers - had you heard the Audience speakers, or was the choice largely because the LS50s are easier to get? The LS50s intrigue me, though I've never been convinced of >1-way speakers... but the concentric design may well calm some of those concerns... I absolutely love my Audience speakers, it's bananas to me the sound that comes out of them... But I'd enjoy hearing from someone who shares my speaker philosophy and has experienced them both.

post #182 of 203
I'm still interested in the Audience Ones despite having the KEF's. They are intended for slightly different things though. I think the Ones are designed for near field and have lower power handling. The KEF's can easily be used for medium and far field listening in bigger spaces. The KEF's seem to sound best at medium volume. Im theorizing the Ones might do better at low volume. All a matter of your space and sonic priorities.
post #183 of 203
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamba315 View Post

I'm still interested in the Audience Ones despite having the KEF's. They are intended for slightly different things though. I think the Ones are designed for near field and have lower power handling. The KEF's can easily be used for medium and far field listening in bigger spaces. The KEF's seem to sound best at medium volume. Im theorizing the Ones might do better at low volume. All a matter of your space and sonic priorities.

Thanks for the response - the opposite of me (incredibly smitten by the Ones but curious about the LS50s). I absolutely agree with (most of) your points, the Ones are very much ideal for nearfield, though they can, properly placed and driven, fill a small room nicely as well. But, I also have a pair of Audience 2+2s, and it's very clear that the One design works best in a desk sort of setting, where the passive radiators can be aimed toward a nearby wall, and the drivers focused on the listener. The 2+2 (and presumably the 1+1) with their side-firing passive radiators and bipole configuration make far more sense for filling up a room. Of course, the power handling and increased sensitivity help as well! So it makes sense to me that the KEFs might be more flexible in this sense. The Audience driver can certainly handle more than mere nearfield listening, but the configuration of the Ones really does lend itself to nearfield. I will disagree about them sounding better at low volume - while they obviously don't have an incredible power handling capability, they sound great at the louder end of their range, and are likely at their best about midway through. 

post #184 of 203
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamba315 View Post
 

Picked up a pair of these KEF's while I wait for a more expensive speaker to be made.  First day I was ready to send them back.  The first 15 hours they sounded thin, bright, and lacked dynamic contrast.

 

Well after tweaking the setup a bit (still only 20 hours on them), they are starting to sound much better.  I would say that they need to be kept away from walls and other reflecting furniture/gear. 

 

I had the same experience. The LS50s definitely need to be kept away from sidewalls and/or the sidewalls should not be very reflective. Once you get the positioning down to where the room doesn't interfere then the brightness gives way to a smooth response.

post #185 of 203
How close to walls are you talking about? I have my left speaker positioned about 1 foot away from the wall and I haven't had any issues, particularly with brightness as stated before. I also have mine placed on my computer desktop which I know is not ideal but hey, they make great computer speakers!
post #186 of 203

3+ ft, though you won't have the same problem with nearfield listening like if you're using them as desktop speakers. Also I'm talking specifically about the sidewalls, the rear wall affects mostly bass and that can be compensated with the provided foam plugs.

post #187 of 203

Does anyone know if these speakers will work well with a Burson Conductor amp?

post #188 of 203
The burson conductor is a headphone amp, perhaps you mean the burson timekeeper? In that case I read a review recently that said they paired well together and I had a conductor recently and can say that burson makes quality products too.
post #189 of 203

I'm also casually tire-kicking amps for the LS50's. My room is far from ideal, which may be responsible for the brightness/hardness I get, but I do get it with a Brio-R. 

 

I thought the Rogue Sphinx looked like the perfect match, but I've read about brightness with this combo more than once.

 

I want:

 

• at least 100 solid state watts per channel

• a nice phono stage

• a good phono stage

• a remote

 

Bonuses:

• tubes in the chain

• ability to be used as a preamp

 

the Sphinx is perfect on paper. what else is out there? I think that something leans towards the warmer side of the spectrum would be ideal for the LS50's

post #190 of 203

We have a local manufacturer called Valve Audio which makes a 100W tube hybrid amp called the Exclamé that would be perfect with the LS50s. I have owned the amp before and its a great bit of kit with a warm musical sound and excellent sound staging. The Arcam A19 would be a nice choice as well, but no valves in the chain. It feels a little bit more powerful than it 50W rating would suggest, unlike the Brio-R. Also warm and smooth sounding. I'm running my LS50s on Myryad amplification with great results.


Edited by daerron - 7/10/14 at 10:04am
post #191 of 203
Quote:
Originally Posted by brhfl View Post
 

I wholeheartedly agree with your attitude toward speakers (well, I'm not a basshead, and I'm still nervous about the two-way system of the LS50), so I'm curious... you chose LS50s over the Audience 'The One' speakers - had you heard the Audience speakers, or was the choice largely because the LS50s are easier to get? The LS50s intrigue me, though I've never been convinced of >1-way speakers... but the concentric design may well calm some of those concerns... I absolutely love my Audience speakers, it's bananas to me the sound that comes out of them... But I'd enjoy hearing from someone who shares my speaker philosophy and has experienced them both.

 

Well, I FINALLY got a hold of the LS50s.  Right now signal chain is: Arcam irDAC -> NAD D 3020 -> LS50

 

I can't believe I was worried about them being thin.  The first thing I noticed is the bass :basshead:.

 

With the NAD 1050 USB DAC, I actually thought there was too much bass.  The Arcam is very neutral and was a perfect fit.  

 

The 3020 D needs to run at 2/3s volume to get to a good listening level.

post #192 of 203
Quote:
Originally Posted by dizzyorange View Post
 

 

Well, I FINALLY got a hold of the LS50s.  Right now signal chain is: Arcam irDAC -> NAD D 3020 -> LS50

 

I can't believe I was worried about them being thin.  The first thing I noticed is the bass :basshead:.

 

With the NAD 1050 USB DAC, I actually thought there was too much bass.  The Arcam is very neutral and was a perfect fit.  

 

The 3020 D needs to run at 2/3s volume to get to a good listening level.

 So, I generally don't believe in burn-in, but the sound of the speakers changed drastically in the first 30 minutes of them being on.  

 

One thing I am noticing: the horizontal axis response is much more forgiving than the vertical axis.  If you are standing above the speakers, they lose much of their magic.  On the other hand, you can be quite a bit left or right of center and the midrange warmth is still there.


Edited by dizzyorange - 7/10/14 at 10:42pm
post #193 of 203
Quote:
Originally Posted by dizzyorange View Post
 

I finalized and ordered my system tonight—based on the very helpful feedback I got here.

 

speakers: KEF LS50  ($1500)

amp: NAD D 3020 ($500)

DAC: NAD D 1050 ($500)

cables: blue jeans (~$50)

 

So, I know those who replied are shaking their heads :confused_face_2:.  Well I must admit, I am a basshead. I like my bass boomy, wet, and wild :beyersmile:.

 

The 3020 is universally described as a warm amp, a little bit loose in the lower registers, perfect for me. 

 

The 1050 DAC (not the same DAC as in the 3020), is consistently described as thick and bassy, perhaps best summed by Audiostream's review: "Think rich, fat, and fun with a nice big bottom."

 

Finally I will turn on the 6db bass boost button on the back of the 3020 :veryevil:.

 

Call me crazy.  Or tell me I should get a subwoofer.  Or just a Sony boombox.  I don't care hehe.  Can't wait for this to get here!

 

Well I just had a laugh looking back at this post from a month ago.  I turned the bass boost on for half a second and immediately turned it off.  No need~!

post #194 of 203
Quote:
Originally Posted by dizzyorange View Post
 

 So, I generally don't believe in burn-in, but the sound of the speakers changed drastically in the first 30 minutes of them being on.  

 

One thing I am noticing: the horizontal axis response is much more forgiving than the vertical axis.  If you are standing above the speakers, they lose much of their magic.  On the other hand, you can be quite a bit left or right of center and the midrange warmth is still there.

 

Spot on about their positioning. If they positioned lower vertically they lose a bit of their magic, but they are also a bit more forgiving. It's also one of the reasons I forgo the thought of using one as a centre channel and bought the KEF R200C in stead. It will still work as a centre when placed horizontally, but then you have to position them on the same level as your mains. Not always practical in a HT.

 

My new stands are much more enjoyable compared to the old ones. Still need to fill them up with sand.

post #195 of 203

Just purchased these speakers recently, and had several days to listen. The Kef LS50 are hooked to a NAD 320 BEE integrated amp. Music source is MacBook Air -> iTunes -> AMarra, -> Gungnir DAC using USB. I have a HSU STF-1 sub as well, and I spent half the time listening to the speakers without it. The listening room is 9 x 9 ft and 8 ft high.


Initial listening impressions are positive. It's a big step up from my older Energy RC-10 bookshelf speakers.

 

The LS50 sounds neutral. Music sounds natural and accurate. Soundstage, imaging, resolution, and clarity are very good. There is no boxy character. Rapping my knuckles against the sides of the speaker produces a dead sound with no vibration. The sounds appear beyond the speakers.The instruments and vocals are well defined and easy to position in the listening plane. I find the bass is present, but could be tighter. Also, it could be more impactful.

 

I can't say it's better than other speakers in its price range, since I only compare it with my RC-10s which cost less than a third the price of the LS50. Overall, it's worth the upgrade.

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