KEF Introduces LS50 Wireless Active Speakers - Page 5 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #121 of 341 Old 02-07-2017, 04:02 AM
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I'm awaiting my KEF LS50 Wireless, they should be here by early next week at the latest. I'm upgrading from the Audioengine a5 plus. I'm assuming this will be a major upgrade. I like to listen to music extremely loud (and clear). The Audioengine actually did a very good job at that, can anyone tell me their experience with these cranked up at very high levels?
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post #122 of 341 Old 02-07-2017, 05:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Glenn Rubin View Post
I'm awaiting my KEF LS50 Wireless, they should be here by early next week at the latest. I'm upgrading from the Audioengine a5 plus. I'm assuming this will be a major upgrade. I like to listen to music extremely loud (and clear). The Audioengine actually did a very good job at that, can anyone tell me their experience with these cranked up at very high levels?
I tested them fairly loud between 90-100 db. I wouldn't have known the sound was that loud until I grabbed my SPL meter. They still sound full, not harsh and bass is still present.
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post #123 of 341 Old 03-08-2017, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Mikenificent1 View Post
Just in case you don't know, JBL came out with an active version of the 705/708. I was all set on the LS 50 W, but now I'm not sure. I would think the JBL's would have more dynamics but the KEF's more finesse. We'll see.
Yes a lot more pricey!

The 708P is $2000 each https://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/con...C&Q=&A=details

The 705PP is $1000 each https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...5_powered.html

It will be interesting to see how they compare?
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post #124 of 341 Old 03-09-2017, 06:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glenn Rubin View Post
I'm awaiting my KEF LS50 Wireless, they should be here by early next week at the latest. I'm upgrading from the Audioengine a5 plus. I'm assuming this will be a major upgrade. I like to listen to music extremely loud (and clear). The Audioengine actually did a very good job at that, can anyone tell me their experience with these cranked up at very high levels?
I have the Audioengine HD 6 and the Vanatoo's since I like powered speakers. The Kefs blow both of them away. You will have no issue at high volume. They take that in stride. Super clear speakers.
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post #125 of 341 Old 03-09-2017, 06:55 PM
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Nowhere near the connectivity of the Kefs so I'm not seeing how they are in the same league for overall usage.

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Yes a lot more pricey!

The 708P is $2000 each https://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/con...C&Q=&A=details

The 705PP is $1000 each https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...5_powered.html

It will be interesting to see how they compare?
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post #126 of 341 Old 03-13-2017, 02:02 PM
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post #127 of 341 Old 03-16-2017, 07:37 AM
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subbed...i'm currently more into cans (sold my b&w 805s yrs ago with audio gear)
so am now looking to rebuild up my living room audio rig.

i like the idea of actives for the amp/dac already inside/calibrated for best sound etc.
to me that means less wires and having to find good matches with passives and a
separate dac/amp.

so still considering these or the dynaudios ...

i know darko gave these ls50 wls rave reviews...and i've since then read mixed reviews
ie some really thinking they offer great bang for the buck...others not so much against separates.
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post #128 of 341 Old 03-16-2017, 07:46 AM
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I haven't read any reviews saying the LS50 Wireless was anything less than a stellar value for what you get. The way it was put to me when I auditioned them at my dealer was that you'd be spending upwards of $2000 to even $3000 to get separate amp, DAC and DSP that beats what you get for the $700 to $1000 difference in price from the passive LS50. (Original list $1500/pr now at $1200/pr)

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post #129 of 341 Old 03-16-2017, 08:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KenM10759 View Post
I haven't read any reviews saying the LS50 Wireless was anything less than a stellar value for what you get. The way it was put to me when I auditioned them at my dealer was that you'd be spending upwards of $2000 to even $3000 to get separate amp, DAC and DSP that beats what you get for the $700 to $1000 difference in price from the passive LS50. (Original list $1500/pr now at $1200/pr)
my bad...my reference to reviews were personal ones...i didn't make that clear. sorry.
in the prof reviews, they're all very good, it was on forums like these (computer audiophile, etc)
that i read of mixed ones from people who've listened to them vs a passive gig.
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post #130 of 341 Old 03-19-2017, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by canali12 View Post
my bad...my reference to reviews were personal ones...i didn't make that clear. sorry.....in the prof reviews, they're all very good, it was on forums like these (computer audiophile, etc) that i read of mixed ones from people who've listened to them vs a passive gig.
Subjective is all I can say, use your ears instead of reading reviews, and use your own music preferably in your own room then you can decide what is best for you

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post #131 of 341 Old 03-19-2017, 10:40 AM
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They just did a major app update I see.
But I once again can't get the speakers to connect to wifi without a reset.
It seems to me that the speakers themselves need a firmware upgrade.
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post #132 of 341 Old 03-21-2017, 01:33 PM
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My white wireless LS50's have finally arrived today after paying them four months ago. They perform really well and I'm blown away how big they actually sound. Close your eyes and your in a song. I don't know what kind of magic KEF is using, but these speakers completely destroy my previous Klipsch RB-81 II setup with Yamaha RX-A1020.

The software side of these, unfortunately, is not so magical. Yes, the remote looks nice, but it's nowhere near actual slider or a knob for quickly turning volume up or down. I have discovered just how crucial this option is for me and I find not being able to use the LS50 Wireless app while in PC, or any other mode for that matter, absolutely ridiculous. You'd have to be sitting next to the right speaker or maniacally pressing tiny remote buttons. The volume changes are in small increments, which, don't get me wrong, is absolutely awesome. I love this precision and truly appreciate it, but I now know I can't live without a physical volume knob or a volume slider, therefore it is a major flaw for me.

Connecting the speakers with my Mac mini was pretty straightforward, not so much with my iPhone and iPad, even though I connected the speakers to my AirPort Extreme router with an ethernet cable and thought this would mean instant connection once I fire up the app on my iOS device. After moving through the menus, switching the input modes, trying out the bluetooth connection, the app somehow managed to find the speakers and I was able to dive in and discover more flaws within the app. Most of the track information is not read correctly, so finding a song is anything but seamless. I do spend lots of hours organizing my songs, playlist, correcting album artwork, missing years, track number, etc. so you can imagine my disappointment. For unknown reasons, some tracks refused to play, mostly ALAC files (44.1/16) and the ones that did took a while to start or were skipping at the start. Next/previous song, changing volume, moving through menus feels slow and tends to stutter, which is especially noticeable when changing speaker sound settings.

These speakers do not support AirPlay, so it's not like I can use Apple Music and easily play music from my well organized library. Yes, I can use the Apple Remote app and play the files from iTunes, including the high-res stuff, put speakers on max volume and use the volume slider within the Remote app, of course risking damaging the speakers should an unexpected system or browser sound come up. All of this doesn't even nearly decrease the value of these incredible looking and sounding speakers, but one expects the software to excel and be on the same or higher level than the hardware since they've put so much work and effort into making them. I hope others here have had a smoother experience than me, but let's face it, it's all about the sound in the end and LS50 Wireless really need to try hard in order to disappoint someone, unless you throw brutally compressed MP3 or WMA music files at it or maybe if you suffer from hearing loss. I truly hope that KEF will continue to improve the software side because competition is already catching up with active wireless speakers.
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post #133 of 341 Old 03-21-2017, 01:37 PM
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Couldn't agree more about the sound quality but also about the lousy remote and app.
You could hook up an Apple TV with optical to the speakers to get Airplay. Which is another thing that should have been built in instead of just bluetooth.
I'm not sure if the remote is IR or what but it would sure be nice to be able to use 3rd party remotes.
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post #134 of 341 Old 03-21-2017, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by highd3f View Post
My white wireless LS50's have finally arrived today after paying them four months ago. They perform really well and I'm blown away how big they actually sound. Close your eyes and your in a song. I don't know what kind of magic KEF is using, but these speakers completely destroy my previous Klipsch RB-81 II setup with Yamaha RX-A1020.
I listened to these at my local dealer and I agree they do put out a big sound, and now I understand why it seemed the remote wasn't working ─ kept pressing that damn button, but, I guess not enough times ─ but, with little distortion at high volume all's good.

I've got PMC twotwo.5s at home, and they do have smoother bass (being transmission line), and clearer midrange, but, still...playing Massive Attacks 'Angel' it got that throbbing bass line right (not quite like live, but...).

The other drawback the dealer found was that they don't have the same colorway as the passive ones, so you can't mix and match for an active stereo, and add more (passive) for surround.

erik g
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post #135 of 341 Old 03-21-2017, 06:52 PM
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Bubbleupnp? instead of KEF app?

turn off gapless control.

Paradigm PW AMP, KEF Q100, Emotiva B1, Rythmik L12
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post #136 of 341 Old 03-23-2017, 05:30 PM
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HighD3f;
I reviewed your post, and thinking about it, don't know if your Yami 1020 has airplay or not. My new 3060 does. My plan was to hook the analog in to the preamp outputs and let the Yamaha control it all. Is this not possible. When I tried them from my phone, I had no issues shifting from the turntable preamp they hooked up at the store, to the phone (both Bluetooth, and wi-if). I had similar issues with the vol through the remote, so I just turned it up to the turntable vol. via the analog ins. Then used the vol on the phone to control it leaving the remote on the table.

I am concerned by your comments. I would have just patched them into the RX-A1020 and left the rest of the system intact including, I' assuming now, your Mac mini. If you got rid of it then I fully get what your saying. If I can't hook my Yamaha FL/FR preamp outputs to them and drive from the Yamaha, then I'll just have to wait until they figure out that this is a config. that needs to be supported and add it. Have you tried this kind of setup yet?
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post #137 of 341 Old 03-24-2017, 04:12 PM
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Have you tried this kind of setup yet?
I got rid of my Yami, so I'm not able to give that a try. I'm pretty sure it would work just like you say. However, these speakers were not designed for home theater, the emphasis is on music listening with simplicity and elegance in mind. Plug and play, easy connection to audio sources and playback of high quality stereo music. I dream of KEF uniting multiple LS50's with a wireless receiver, armed with multichannel audio decoding capabilities for the ultimate Dolby Atmos experience.

Until that, everything else is a compromise. Not that I don't like experimenting, but I prefer using devices in a way they were intended. Putting more devices in an audio chain further complicates things, adding unnecessary connections in order to solve one problem, potentially causing more. My faith at the moment is in KEF's hands. I really hope they fix all the issues with the app, support more audio formats, add features and let these speakers truly shine from every aspect because they're really amazing.
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post #138 of 341 Old 03-24-2017, 07:39 PM
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Originally Posted by highd3f View Post
I got rid of my Yami, so I'm not able to give that a try. I'm pretty sure it would work just like you say. However, these speakers were not designed for home theater, the emphasis is on music listening with simplicity and elegance in mind. Plug and play, easy connection to audio sources and playback of high quality stereo music. I dream of KEF uniting multiple LS50's with a wireless receiver, armed with multichannel audio decoding capabilities for the ultimate Dolby Atmos experience.

Until that, everything else is a compromise. Not that I don't like experimenting, but I prefer using devices in a way they were intended. Putting more devices in an audio chain further complicates things, adding unnecessary connections in order to solve one problem, potentially causing more. My faith at the moment is in KEF's hands. I really hope they fix all the issues with the app, support more audio formats, add features and let these speakers truly shine from every aspect because they're really amazing.
Fully understand. I agree that the the software needs work, and fully expect you'll see improvement. My situation already having 5 LS50 passives is that I'd love to free up a pair to use in lieu of my Kef 102 refs. Putting the LS50Ws in the front L/R position would enable me to use the rest of the Yamaha horsepower for the rest of the 7.1.4 configuration, but I can't see spending the money unless I can pipe sound from wireless sources for stereo when the big HT isn't needed. Anyway, congratulations on the great pair and cudos for your patience with Kef's software issues. Keep us informed on any additional learning.
Best, Chris
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post #139 of 341 Old 03-26-2017, 07:57 PM
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Quick question - Can I use my Denon AVR to manage the connections coming in and have it route the sound through the LS50W? I'm having difficulty figuring out how I'd integrate the LS50 into my setup, which consists of a TV, Fios Cable box, Apple TV and likely the BlueNode
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post #140 of 341 Old 03-26-2017, 08:42 PM
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Use only the pre-outs for main L-R front speakers through your Denon AVR for all but the Bluesound Node 2. Leave nothing connected to the L-R front speaker level outputs. You do not want to send an amplified signal to the LS50 Wireless speakers!

For the Bluesound Node 2, if you want to take advantage of hearing MQA files though Tidal HiFi (highly recommended), use the analog outputs out of the Node and go though the Denon. That will enable using it's Pure Direct mode to get a fairly clean signal to the speakers. I think most Denon's feed the pre-outs as well as the speaker outputs in that mode.

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post #141 of 341 Old 03-26-2017, 09:11 PM
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Also if your Denon AVR has an optical output, you can use that instead to avoid the extra D/A > A/D conversion.

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post #142 of 341 Old 03-27-2017, 03:07 AM
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Originally Posted by KenM10759 View Post
Use only the pre-outs for main L-R front speakers through your Denon AVR for all but the Bluesound Node 2. Leave nothing connected to the L-R front speaker level outputs. You do not want to send an amplified signal to the LS50 Wireless speakers!



For the Bluesound Node 2, if you want to take advantage of hearing MQA files though Tidal HiFi (highly recommended), use the analog outputs out of the Node and go though the Denon. That will enable using it's Pure Direct mode to get a fairly clean signal to the speakers. I think most Denon's feed the pre-outs as well as the speaker outputs in that mode.


What's the reason for not using the optical out on the bluenode?

Thanks for the feedback!
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post #143 of 341 Old 03-27-2017, 06:31 AM
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What's the reason for not using the optical out on the bluenode?

Thanks for the feedback!
Bluesound Node 2, or simply "Node" not "bluenode." I know, it's just semantics and I'm anal.

The reason is only an issue if you ever use the Node's MQA full decoding capability. If you send out the digital signal it's not fully decoded because the signal hasn't gone through the Node's DAC. This is not even any kind of issue if you never play MQA files, and it's said that at some point KEF may add decoding to the LS50 Wireless and make that a moot point.

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post #144 of 341 Old 03-27-2017, 07:03 AM
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OK got it

Ok so if I understand it right, the Node when connected via Optical passes a completely digital signal to the LS50W's who then use their decoder to convert the digital signal to sound?

But they currently cannot decode MQA?

But when hooked up via the analog (red/white) plugs the signal is being fully decoded by the Node?

Is there any downside leaving the Node connected to the LS50W's via analog all the time then?

I just checked by Denon (it's the 1713) and it does NOT have pre-outs or an optical out So I may need to upgrade that.
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post #145 of 341 Old 03-27-2017, 07:04 AM
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Also if your Denon AVR has an optical output, you can use that instead to avoid the extra D/A > A/D conversion.
But in this hookup scenario MQA would not be possible, yes?
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post #146 of 341 Old 03-27-2017, 07:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Pasoa2000 View Post
But in this hookup scenario MQA would not be possible, yes?
Correct...until such time as KEF offers an MQA decoding firmware update to the speakers.

I checked a number of Denon AVR's, including the top-of-the-line AVR7200W and none have digital optical out. The only digital output appears to be HDMI.

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post #147 of 341 Old 03-27-2017, 07:21 AM
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Originally Posted by KenM10759 View Post
Correct...until such time as KEF offers an MQA decoding firmware update to the speakers.

I checked a number of Denon AVR's, including the top-of-the-line AVR7200W and none have digital optical out. The only digital output appears to be HDMI.
And KEF has indicated they are doing this? Or we don't know?

What's the downside of hooking the node up via the analog red/white all the time?
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post #148 of 341 Old 03-27-2017, 07:35 AM
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It's all rumor and speculation that KEF would do this, and honestly they'd have a hard time justifying it on just one product. If they have other wireless speakers in the pipeline which also have that high quality DAC & DSP, then adding MQA decoding would make their speakers even more attractive to more people but this would have to make "business sense" no matter what.

There really isn't any down side to using the Node 2's DAC and analog out, IMO. Arguably you should simply use a good quality interconnect cable set, perhaps something better than the one provided by Bluesound, and that would assure you get the best out of the Node 2's Burr-Brown DAC chip. Once any analog signal reaches the LS50 Wireless it gets converted back to digital in order to send that signal to both DAC/amp combos in each speaker, but it's done well. One less conversion when & if the KEF's can do full MQA decode in each speaker would be nice, I just can't predict how much of a noticeable improvement it might be if detectable at all.

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post #149 of 341 Old 03-27-2017, 12:28 PM
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post #150 of 341 Old 03-28-2017, 03:06 PM
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if a sub is connected by the line out of these speakers, will I be able to change the volume of the sub along with the speakers?
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