So after 8 years of one of the most successful compact speakers ever how do you make a real improvement?
First rewind 9 years when Kef engineers were tasked with making a limited edition statement for Kef's 50th birthday. Gloves off, no restrictions, let's do something ground-breaking.
So a cabinet with lots of internal bracing to make it rigid and stop vibrations. Curved cabinet sides to give an even dispersion also meant that there was no grille. An updated version of the Uni-Q treble and midrange unit took cues from the Blade research so this was to become a worldwide phenomenon. So good that the limited edition was quickly forgotten!
If your design is so fundamentally right how do you then improve it?
Call me cynical but many hifi companies are marketing driven and 'invent a breakthrough' to be forgotten a few years later. Linen for a speaker drive unit, really? Are you mad??
Kef is a proper engineering company and following the science is more than a Boris Johnston soundbite to them. They have been working with a material specialist company to use meta-material for damping.
So what is meta-material?
A metamaterial is any material engineered to have a property that is not found in naturally occurring materials.
It has to be created, in this case to absorb specific frequencies played back into the cabinet as the treble unit moves back after every time it moves forward.
So what? I hear you say, is that a big issue? When you hear the effect it has on the sound you will say YES ! This improvement made other issues clear, a redesign of the waveguide, changes to the cabinet manufacture to make it more rigid.
When I put the first pair on I was somewhat underwhelmed, clean but not dynamic, what's wrong? I've read the White Paper, seen the review
s, let's stick with it, keep running them in, and they just keep getting better and better!
Now these speakers are just incredible!
As if Kef didn't have a scientific advantage over most speaker manufacturers already this moves on what is technically possible.
Am I over-reacting? No, this is big and I can't wait to hear this technology applied to the Blades and Reference!
in for a listen, the future of loudspeakers is here and every other manufacturer has just taken a step backwards!
Meanwhile What Hifi have both LS50 Meta and LS50 Wireless 2 Meta with 5 Star reviews, both have won the Annual Awards and now both have won overall Product of the Year Awards! See, I wasn't over-reacting at all!