KEF LS-50

MJ18.12.2012

Stand mount monitors

KEF presents the LS-50 as an ultimate studio monitor. Well, there is a lot of passive studio speakers that are at least as good as the LS-50, a dozen of those that are better than it, and a handful of those that let the LS-50 eat the dust. The problem is that none of the latter are that cheap. Therefore I would reformulate the KEF's claim to the ultimate affordable studio monitor.

Funkce a forma

92%
Ergonomie
40%
Zvuk
86%
Zpracování

The convex front panel, that is made of injected polymer, hosts the patented Uni-Q driver. The reviewed pair was in glossy black with a copper-finished driver, but KEF offers many more exciting colour ccombinations.

Inside the LS-50 there are two perpendicular braces (alike B&W's matrix technology) that are damped by a viscoelastic spacers in the contact points with the cabinet. The reflex port is unusually eliptical and made of frequency-tuned rubber, which should help suppress airflow resonances.

The Uni-Q driver is derived from the KEF's Blade flagship. The central 1" aluminum dome has - according to KEF - the break up mode at 48kHz, far away from audible range. The visually striking turbine design is actually a waveguide that also makes the dome stiffer. From 2.2kHz the midrange cone starts to operate. It is made of magnesium-aluminum alloy.

Nízké frekvence

Váha
30
Výbušnost
36
Artikulace
32

The pair of small KEFs does not have a lot of bass on its own, so a subwoofer (or two) should be obligatory for serious listening. With the subwoofer (I used Bowers & Wilkins and KEF subs) the sound was exemplary flat and balanced.

Čistota rozlišení

Detail
62
Vzduch
60
Transparentnost
60

In hybrid reccordings, the LS-50 correctly sorted out human element (hovering female vocal) from synthesized sounds (the rest). This is because it illuminates the reverberation that was picked up by microphones during the vocal recording and let you hear the pitch black background of electronic instruments that were recorded from their digital outputs. The KEFs also readily resolve the case when reverb is added by a console and this was the thing I liked the most - these monitors should let you hear the music from an audio engineer's perspective, and they do.

Tonální věrnost

Témbr
46
Dynamika
59
Časování
52

The LS-50s need proper burn-in. Without that they sound constricted and flat. Once given few dozens of hours in use, they became relaxed and sweet. I loved how sensitive were the KEFs to subtle dynamic shifts. With Mighty Sam McClain I could hear fine shadings of the Hammond organ and guitar dialogue, always liquid and soulful, like with the best turntables. And the more hours I spend with the LS-50s the more resolved they got. 

For some ears the LS-50s' sound may be too dry as the speakers are voiced neutrally. The die-hard audiophiles will miss more pixels in sound, the lovers of colours may find the LS-50s too laid back. Formy ears they were accurate, honest and not showing off.

Prostorovost

Trojrozměrnost
47
Šířka scény
50
Hloubka scény
50

The concentric Uni-Q driver is an amazing thing if you look for sound coherence. If yu pay attention to proper matching and the placement of the speakers in your room, then they will reward you with a three-dimensional illusion and disappear. Especially at night sessions, when everything went quiet, I often (with my eyes closed) tried to localize the KEFs in my room, without success. The filled the room with music and let it communicate.

Cena v době recenze:27 000,- Kč

Doporučení prodejci

Perfect Sound Group, Praha, tel. +420 722 960 690

Připojené komponenty

  • Sources: Accuphase DP-78
  • Amplifiers: Accuphase A-60
  • Interconnects and speaker cables: Krautwire Fractal, HGA DNA, Krautwire Guru S
  • Subwoofers: 2x Bowers & Wilkins ASW610, KEF Q400b
  • Power conditioning: Nordost Thor (modified)

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