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post #1 of 219 Old 11-25-2016, 10:49 AM - Thread Starter
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Kef Reference Owners

All -

I thought I'd start a thread for Reference owners.

First question.. what amp do you have powering your Reference speakers? I currently have a Bryston 4b3 powering my Ref 5's, but am thinking of going 'bigger' and getting the Bryston 28b3 mono blocks.

Bryston SP3 - Bryston 4B3 - Bryston 9BSST2 - Bryston BIT15 - Oppo 105D - Bryston BDP-2 - Bryston BDA-3 - Kef Reference 5 - Kef Reference 4c - 4x Kef Ci200RR-THX - 2x JL Audio F212v2 - Technics 1200-mk5 - Better Cables XLR & Speaker wire - AudioQuest Coffee USBs
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post #2 of 219 Old 11-26-2016, 01:26 AM
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Kyle,

Great idea to start a new thread. Unfortunately, I'm not going to be able to help much as I have virtually identical front end gear...

Kef Reference 1's
Kef Reference 2c
Kef LS50
Seaton Submersive HP
Oppo BDP-105
Bryston SP3
Bryston 9B-ST
MiniDSP DDRC-88A

With that in mind, what do you find lacking such that you feel you need to upgrade your amp setup? Or is this simply ungradeitis taking hold?

Victor
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post #3 of 219 Old 11-27-2016, 12:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ez-v View Post
Kyle,

Great idea to start a new thread. Unfortunately, I'm not going to be able to help much as I have virtually identical front end gear...

Kef Reference 1's
Kef Reference 2c
Kef LS50
Seaton Submersive HP
Oppo BDP-105
Bryston SP3
Bryston 9B-ST
MiniDSP DDRC-88A

With that in mind, what do you find lacking such that you feel you need to upgrade your amp setup? Or is this simply ungradeitis taking hold?

Victor

The 5's are a hell of a speaker and I don't think the 4b3 is doing it justice. I'm just hitting the top end of the recommended RMS with that amp, and I've always been a believer in running an amp 1.5x-2x the RMS. I'm really thinking about the 28b3, but that might be overkill. Maybe just a pair of 7b3s would do the trick.

Bryston SP3 - Bryston 4B3 - Bryston 9BSST2 - Bryston BIT15 - Oppo 105D - Bryston BDP-2 - Bryston BDA-3 - Kef Reference 5 - Kef Reference 4c - 4x Kef Ci200RR-THX - 2x JL Audio F212v2 - Technics 1200-mk5 - Better Cables XLR & Speaker wire - AudioQuest Coffee USBs
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post #4 of 219 Old 11-27-2016, 05:00 PM
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Not too many owners from what I've seen in the KEF thread.

For amps, I've had great success with Simaudio. I am a huge Sim fan and when I read comments like bright, harsh etc I just have to chuckle a bit. They are so from that.

I have KEF REF 1 and REF 4C center. I'm power all three with their own mono amp. Simaudio Neo 400M. 400W @8ohm 650W @4ohm .

These speakers really demand high current amps. They suck up juice like a sponge and while you may get sound with a low power amp and you might even enjoy it I don't think you'll know what your missing until you experiment on your own.

That why I am not sure if these speakers are for everyone (what speaker is?) but I see some ask if an AVR will drive these speakers and I wonder what advice dealers are providing.

Rick
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post #5 of 219 Old 11-27-2016, 08:56 PM
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I guess I'm at the other end of the spectrum as I'm running my Ref 5s with a single MC275. I was going to get a second and run them in mono, but don't feel compelled to at the moment. My system is an all tube (C1100 pre, Allnic H-3000/HA-3000 phono pre/headamp) dedicated 2 channel setup and the Ref 5s have proven to be an excellent match.

Interesting that 3 of us are in the Bay Area....

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post #6 of 219 Old 12-22-2016, 09:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Not too many owners from what I've seen in the KEF thread.

For amps, I've had great success with Simaudio. I am a huge Sim fan and when I read comments like bright, harsh etc I just have to chuckle a bit. They are so from that.

I have KEF REF 1 and REF 4C center. I'm power all three with their own mono amp. Simaudio Neo 400M. 400W @8ohm 650W @4ohm .

These speakers really demand high current amps. They suck up juice like a sponge and while you may get sound with a low power amp and you might even enjoy it I don't think you'll know what your missing until you experiment on your own.

That why I am not sure if these speakers are for everyone (what speaker is?) but I see some ask if an AVR will drive these speakers and I wonder what advice dealers are providing.

Rick

I've experienced the same thing. I get plenty of sound in the high range but I'm missing the punch in the middle between the highs and when my subs kick in at 55hz. I have a Bryston 4b3 powering the Ref 5's right now (300wpc), and one channel off my Bryston 9bsst2 (150wpc) going to the 4c. I feel like theres just something missing that they're not being pushed enough. I have 2 Bryston 28b3s (1000wpc) coming in the next couple of weeks for the Ref 5's and I'm going to bridge the 4b3 (900wpc) to the center. That should be more than enough juice to make them sing.

Bryston SP3 - Bryston 4B3 - Bryston 9BSST2 - Bryston BIT15 - Oppo 105D - Bryston BDP-2 - Bryston BDA-3 - Kef Reference 5 - Kef Reference 4c - 4x Kef Ci200RR-THX - 2x JL Audio F212v2 - Technics 1200-mk5 - Better Cables XLR & Speaker wire - AudioQuest Coffee USBs
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post #7 of 219 Old 01-12-2017, 04:14 PM
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Anybody running the Reference series as a HT system complete with the Ref center? I've been looking real close at KEF reference 5, etc (I have not heard them in person yet), but I must admit the Persona series from Paradigm also has my attention...its not my intention to derail the OP but thought it might be pertinent. thanks.

As far as amplifier upgrades in the OP, I would agree that more wattage will likely make those speakers sing an even better tune, so to speak. IMO.
Effortless torque, so to speak lol...
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post #8 of 219 Old 01-28-2017, 08:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Crunchyriff View Post
Anybody running the Reference series as a HT system complete with the Ref center? I've been looking real close at KEF reference 5, etc (I have not heard them in person yet), but I must admit the Persona series from Paradigm also has my attention...its not my intention to derail the OP but thought it might be pertinent. thanks.

As far as amplifier upgrades in the OP, I would agree that more wattage will likely make those speakers sing an even better tune, so to speak. IMO.
Effortless torque, so to speak lol...
I have it set up that way. this is my system.. and it sounds fantastic.

Bryston SP3 - 2x Bryston 28b3 - Bryston 4B3 - Bryston 9BSST2 - Bryston BIT15 - Bryston Bit20 - Oppo 203 - Bryston BDP-2 - Bryston BDA-3 - Kef Reference 5 - Kef Reference 4c - 4x Kef Ci200RR-THX - 2x JL Audio F212v2 - Technics 1200-mk5 - Better Cables XLR & Speaker wire - AudioQuest Coffee USBs
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Bryston SP3 - Bryston 4B3 - Bryston 9BSST2 - Bryston BIT15 - Oppo 105D - Bryston BDP-2 - Bryston BDA-3 - Kef Reference 5 - Kef Reference 4c - 4x Kef Ci200RR-THX - 2x JL Audio F212v2 - Technics 1200-mk5 - Better Cables XLR & Speaker wire - AudioQuest Coffee USBs
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post #9 of 219 Old 01-28-2017, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr.SoftDome View Post
Not too many owners from what I've seen in the KEF thread.

That why I am not sure if these speakers are for everyone (what speaker is?) but I see some ask if an AVR will drive these speakers and I wonder what advice dealers are providing.

Rick
I haven't had the opportunity to listen to any KEF speakers as there aren't any dealers in the area, but I have to admit some confusion about what makes the Reference series worth so much more than the R series. KEF's website doesn't offer a ton of details, they seem to use the same Uni-Q HF/Mid driver, and from the descriptions on the site the bass drivers look incredible similar, maybe even the same?

What makes the Reference 3 $7,000 each while the R700 is $1,800 each? What about the Reference 1 vs the R300? The Reference models sport a few extra hz of bass extension and different crossover points, but the price difference is staggering based on what appear to be speakers that are more similar than they are different.

What am I missing here?
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post #10 of 219 Old 01-29-2017, 03:16 AM
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Kef Reference Owners

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Originally Posted by TuteTibiImperes View Post
I haven't had the opportunity to listen to any KEF speakers as there aren't any dealers in the area, but I have to admit some confusion about what makes the Reference series worth so much more than the R series. KEF's website doesn't offer a ton of details, they seem to use the same Uni-Q HF/Mid driver, and from the descriptions on the site the bass drivers look incredible similar, maybe even the same?



What makes the Reference 3 $7,000 each while the R700 is $1,800 each? What about the Reference 1 vs the R300? The Reference models sport a few extra hz of bass extension and different crossover points, but the price difference is staggering based on what appear to be speakers that are more similar than they are different.



What am I missing here?


In short, listening to them.

Different league, different components, they are leaps and bounds above the R series (which itself is a stunning proposition) the blade IMHO is a similar jump up from the reference series.

All hand made here in the U.K., the quality and finish is in another level. All built and tested to reference spec on site at the KEF factory in Kent.

I was lucky enough to have a tour of the facility and meet the team behind the blade and refs. Great guys and facility is an amazing place especially the museum


Go listen to them, they are simply stunning!

Think there is a white paper you can download. Google it it will blow your mind.

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post #11 of 219 Old 02-22-2018, 04:15 PM
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I'm about to join the Kef Reference 1 owner status...waiting on delivery. Powered by the Rotel RAP 1580 AVR, 150W at 8 ohms. Thinking of adding the Rotel RB1500 for more power to the 1s. Any other suggestions? What about speaker wire recommendations? thinking of Audioquest Rocket 88.

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post #12 of 219 Old 02-22-2018, 06:37 PM
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I'm about to join the Kef Reference 1 owner status...waiting on delivery. Powered by the Rotel RAP 1580 AVR, 150W at 8 ohms. Thinking of adding the Rotel RB1500 for more power to the 1s. Any other suggestions? What about speaker wire recommendations? thinking of Audioquest Rocket 88.
Nice- you will love them.

I wouldn't go crazy on cables. I have been down that path once in my life. The Audioquest Rocket will be fine. I have a pair Audioquest Comet sitting in my closet. They were around $3k back many years ago. I bought them with banana and they are so delicate that I have broken them twice. I gave up and tossed them in the closet. I will get them switched over to spades some day and use them as they are paid for but in the mean time I am using something along the lines of Audioquest generic from Audio Advisor. Much less than the Comet and my speakers still sound great.

I have a LOT of money in cables from a time in my hobby many years ago. I would never do it again. Power cords, Interconnect, speaker etc.

Just enjoy your speakers. The 1s are great for stereo and in a full home theater set-up. I use KEF LS50 rears and the KEF Atmos R modules front and rear.

All KEF HT is awesome. KEF REF stereo is awesome.

The center really in sublime in the REF series.

Nice to see the thread brought back up. Not enough owners. In fact, I took a self imposed break from this place for many months. Some of the garbage going around was too much.

Good to step in and see a KEF Reference thread.

Let us know how your speakers work out.

Rick
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post #13 of 219 Old 02-22-2018, 07:32 PM
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Nice- you will love them.



I wouldn't go crazy on cables. I have been down that path once in my life. The Audioquest Rocket will be fine. I have a pair Audioquest Comet sitting in my closet. They were around $3k back many years ago. I bought them with banana and they are so delicate that I have broken them twice. I gave up and tossed them in the closet. I will get them switched over to spades some day and use them as they are paid for but in the mean time I am using something along the lines of Audioquest generic from Audio Advisor. Much less than the Comet and my speakers still sound great.



I have a LOT of money in cables from a time in my hobby many years ago. I would never do it again. Power cords, Interconnect, speaker etc.



Just enjoy your speakers. The 1s are great for stereo and in a full home theater set-up. I use KEF LS50 rears and the KEF Atmos R modules front and rear.



All KEF HT is awesome. KEF REF stereo is awesome.



The center really in sublime in the REF series.



Nice to see the thread brought back up. Not enough owners. In fact, I took a self imposed break from this place for many months. Some of the garbage going around was too much.



Good to step in and see a KEF Reference thread.



Let us know how your speakers work out.



Rick


How u liking the R50 Atmos modules? Are u getting the sound ‘over you’? Also how far back is your Mlp? I’m thinking of getting them once I decide on which set of R Floorstands I will be getting. R50s just for the front though



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post #14 of 219 Old 02-22-2018, 10:12 PM
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Did somebody compare the Reference with the B&W D3?

I have the 805D3 and would like to know if I switch to KEF Reference 3 if this is a step up or 'just' a side step?

I'm only using the speakers for HT.
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post #15 of 219 Old 02-24-2018, 04:40 PM
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How u liking the R50 Atmos modules? Are u getting the sound ‘over you’? Also how far back is your Mlp? I’m thinking of getting them once I decide on which set of R Floorstands I will be getting. R50s just for the front though



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I like them but KEF did not have the Q series modules when I purchased them. I am not sure how much more you get using the R series modules over the Q and that would be a nice test.

To be honest, I jumped thru hoops to get front and rear Atmos added to my set-up. I replaced my AVR that I was using as a pre-pro to the actual pre-pro version. Bought a seven channel multi-amp for the rears and front/rear Atmos speakers and being in for five or six months now I would say I spent a lot of money for a bit of return.

I have purchased some really good discs and bought a few movies on VUDU and had some really good results. Each case is different I guess but I have fairly high ceilings. I use the KEF dedicated stands in front for my REF 1 and they are 21 inches high. I think the front modules would work better with more height but I am not willing to go there right now.

I had the front modules prior to the rears by many months. I would say if I could only start with one I would have gone with the rears first now. I am getting some solid results from the rears but again they seat up higher than my front modules. The best movie I've had for a good front to rear pan was that latest Anabelle movie. It was pretty wicked in sound and that's when I had my okay- this might be worth it moment.

I have demoed at a dealer properly mounted speakers up high and in proper locations in a dedicated room. What a mind bending experience. I wish I could have that type room but that's not the case for me.

I would say modules worth it if you don't expect every movie you watch to be an Atmos ear opener. For me it has not been but when it does hit in certain movies it's pretty cool.

For the financial return it would have been great to compare the Q and R modules. With Q I think you have to go matte black over the piano in the R and they look to be smaller but for this purpose I wonder what is gained one vs the other but R looks more substantial in build, finish and the different driver but for brief overhead sounds?

I really need to play around with Dirac as well as it may be setting them too soft. I think I might run them a little hot for awhile and see how it goes. It could be some adjustments here and there would really improve things.

Rick
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post #16 of 219 Old 02-24-2018, 10:13 PM
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Did somebody compare the Reference with the B&W D3?

I have the 805D3 and would like to know if I switch to KEF Reference 3 if this is a step up or 'just' a side step?

I'm only using the speakers for HT.
I would also like to know if anyone has directly compared KEF Reference with B&W D3. My local hifi shop carries KEF Reference, including the Reference 3, which I’ve heard a couple times. Honestly, I didn’t like the Ref 3 very much at all, which was surprising to me since I love my LS50s. The Ref 3 had sparkling highs, a TON of tight low end bass, but just wasn’t coherent. There was a weird mid bass hole in both rooms I heard them in (at different times). It’s funny that this particular shop has the Ref 3 but not the Ref 1. It seems like the universally praised speaker of the Reference line is the Ref 1. I’d really like to hear a pair.

I’ve heard B&W D3 speakers many times at my local Magnolia Design Center, and have really liked them every time. Alas, the big boy 802 sounds nuts, but they’re 22 grand per pair. It’s hard to like 803, 804 or 805 when you’ve heard 802 in the same room. It really is an incredible speaker.

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Hi guys, I just purchased a Used pair of Ref 3s. I had the r700s before. My search is over these ref 3s are my life speakers.
Truly am blessed to be an owner of these wonderful sounding beautiful speakers. Will post some pics soon.
Sound compared to the r700 is simply no comparison. The reference threes are simply fantastic for two channel and home theater. I absolutely love them and worth the money. I'm lucky that I got them at a quarter of the price of retail.
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post #18 of 219 Old 02-25-2018, 12:08 PM
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Originally Posted by adrummingdude View Post
I would also like to know if anyone has directly compared KEF Reference with B&W D3. My local hifi shop carries KEF Reference, including the Reference 3, which I’ve heard a couple times. Honestly, I didn’t like the Ref 3 very much at all, which was surprising to me since I love my LS50s. The Ref 3 had sparkling highs, a TON of tight low end bass, but just wasn’t coherent. There was a weird mid bass hole in both rooms I heard them in (at different times). It’s funny that this particular shop has the Ref 3 but not the Ref 1. It seems like the universally praised speaker of the Reference line is the Ref 1. I’d really like to hear a pair.

I’ve heard B&W D3 speakers many times at my local Magnolia Design Center, and have really liked them every time. Alas, the big boy 802 sounds nuts, but they’re 22 grand per pair. It’s hard to like 803, 804 or 805 when you’ve heard 802 in the same room. It really is an incredible speaker.
I need to check out the Kef Ref 1s at some point, they're on my list with the new Elac Adante AS-61s, it would be interesting to see which high-end coaxial three-way does it better, the Elacs certainly have a nice price advantage. Did you ever get a chance to audition the Paradigm Personas? I thought the Persona B was a clear winner over the 805 D3.
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post #19 of 219 Old 02-25-2018, 01:50 PM
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Hi guys, I just purchased a Used pair of Ref 3s. I had the r700s before. My search is over these ref 3s are my life speakers.
Truly am blessed to be an owner of these wonderful sounding beautiful speakers. Will post some pics soon.
Sound compared to the r700 is simply no comparison. The reference threes are simply fantastic for two channel and home theater. I absolutely love them and worth the money. I'm lucky that I got them at a quarter of the price of retail.
Nice and you can't beat that price! I ordered mine right at release. The local dealer was one of the first to have them and after some auditions went for them but it was almost a six month wait and my discount sucked!

Nice that fast forward you can pick them up on the used market for a great price. The Rosewood are beautiful. Post some pics when you are set up.

These are incredible stereo speakers but for HT simply amazing. The best I have owned. If you can pick up a center on the used market I would highly suggest it some day.

What are you going to drive them with? They do like high current amps.

Enjoy,

Rick
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post #20 of 219 Old 02-25-2018, 01:59 PM
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Originally Posted by adrummingdude View Post
I would also like to know if anyone has directly compared KEF Reference with B&W D3. My local hifi shop carries KEF Reference, including the Reference 3, which I’ve heard a couple times. Honestly, I didn’t like the Ref 3 very much at all, which was surprising to me since I love my LS50s. The Ref 3 had sparkling highs, a TON of tight low end bass, but just wasn’t coherent. There was a weird mid bass hole in both rooms I heard them in (at different times). It’s funny that this particular shop has the Ref 3 but not the Ref 1. It seems like the universally praised speaker of the Reference line is the Ref 1. I’d really like to hear a pair.

I’ve heard B&W D3 speakers many times at my local Magnolia Design Center, and have really liked them every time. Alas, the big boy 802 sounds nuts, but they’re 22 grand per pair. It’s hard to like 803, 804 or 805 when you’ve heard 802 in the same room. It really is an incredible speaker.
The D3s were not out yet when I ordered the KEFs. I did some extensive auditions and I had the B&W CM series in my bedroom and I had auditioned the D2s in the past as well. My buddy has the older D2s (805) and the smaller center HTM1 or whatever it was. He was cool enough to let me take the center home for a spin next to my CMs. I know this is a strange compare but this was for a heavy HT set-up and the center is important to me. I am not sure how much change has occurred with the D3s as I have not heard them but from my D2 auditions and my home test I always found the midrange to be veiled or something. Not exactly sure if some sort of suck-out but the center in my house as well as my auditions were always the same. Something seems veiled to me and not quite right.

This does not make them bad as many folks love them and at this level it's all about what floats your boat. I always felt the Bowers were behind KEF, Dynaudio and a couple of other contenders. Again, I would not listen to me or others for such a decision. It's all personal and what gets your juices flowing.

I do hope Dynaudio comes out with a Confidence replace or update soon. I think it's coming and I am extremely curious what they will do.

You might want to add Dynaudio to your list if you can audition.

Rick
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post #21 of 219 Old 02-25-2018, 02:25 PM
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Originally Posted by TuteTibiImperes View Post
I need to check out the Kef Ref 1s at some point, they're on my list with the new Elac Adante AS-61s, it would be interesting to see which high-end coaxial three-way does it better, the Elacs certainly have a nice price advantage. Did you ever get a chance to audition the Paradigm Personas? I thought the Persona B was a clear winner over the 805 D3.
Unfortunately not. I am very curious about the Paradigm Persona, but I have literally zero experience with Paradigm products of any sort. There was a pair of Persona Bs on audiogon a few months back that was tempting me.

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Hi Rick,
Thanks for the reply. I am using an older Denon 5308 as a preamp and an Athem MCA 325 3 channel amp to power the front stage. The Denon powering the surrounds.

Right now the Anthem is powering the ref 3s pretty well. Rated at 225 watts channel 8ohms. Anthem cost me 2500$ about a year ago.
I'm am very happy w the setup.
I'm wondering if another amp might make them sign even better.

Time will tell, will have to do some research. At this time I am not complaining.

The ref 3s I got had some issues. They had some shipping damage that's how I got them for a great price. Luckily most damage is on the sides and back. But either way I'm very happy.

Given the lower sensitivity of the ref 3s, they seem louder with the same system.

Right now I'm using my kef r600c as the center for now. It blends and sounds great with the ref 3s.
I do want to get the matching center. I think it would bring HT to a higher level.


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Originally Posted by Mr.SoftDome View Post
Nice and you can't beat that price! I ordered mine right at release. The local dealer was one of the first to have them and after some auditions went for them but it was almost a six month wait and my discount sucked!

Nice that fast forward you can pick them up on the used market for a great price. The Rosewood are beautiful. Post some pics when you are set up.

These are incredible stereo speakers but for HT simply amazing. The best I have owned. If you can pick up a center on the used market I would highly suggest it some day.

What are you going to drive them with? They do like high current amps.

Enjoy,

Rick
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Originally Posted by adrummingdude View Post
Unfortunately not. I am very curious about the Paradigm Persona, but I have literally zero experience with Paradigm products of any sort. There was a pair of Persona Bs on audiogon a few months back that was tempting me.
I listened to the Paradigm Persona 3F, B&W 804D3, and Kef Reference 1 at http://www.integritysound.com/ in Sarasota. Great shop. Right amount of power to each set-up. At Magnolia, they had to move to move the 804s to the Elite room to get right amount of power (they were getting less than 50% recommend power in the non-Elite listening room). All to personal taste & ears but to me, the Kef Reference 1 speakers really stood out. The B&W 804D3 sound (I've had the CM5 for 9 years) is so distinctive but after extensive listening, I chose the KR1. I would have liked to buy them at that store but if not for the Magnolia Designer even highly recommending the KR1, I wouldn't have even had heard of them to choose. I took the wife to Magnolia as the Florida Kef rep brought in his speakers for us to listen to them. Wife agreed these were a step above the properly powered B&W 804D3. Magnolia didn't have the Personas but Persona 3F were my third choice (the 9H is a different story but outside of my budget).

As for cables, I'm going to order http://cleardaycables.com/double-shotgun/, getting tremendous reviews and for $450 or so for bi-wired & bi-amp, plus spade one end, bananas on other end.

Likely to add a power amp too and stick with Rotel as it likely is designed to work best with the Rotel RAP 1580 AVR I'm using.

Fun time$$$ Should have the new speakers this week and will post pictures

Sony XBR-65A1E OLED | Pioneer Kuro Elite 141FD 60" | Rotel RAP-1580 AVR | Kef Reference 1 | OPPO UDP-205 | B&W CM5 | Apple 4K TV | Sonus One | Peachtree Nova Amp | Pro-Ject Turntable | Xbox One X (soon) | Panamax MB1500 | APC H15 Power Conditioning | AudioQuest Coffee & Vodka (in-wall) | Control4 EA 1 & SR-260-I | Amazon Echo | Sanus BLF228-B1 Wall Mount
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fritzjurg View Post
I listened to the Paradigm Persona 3F, B&W 804D3, and Kef Reference 1 at http://www.integritysound.com/ in Sarasota. Great shop. Right amount of power to each set-up. At Magnolia, they had to move to move the 804s to the Elite room to get right amount of power (they were getting less than 50% recommend power in the non-Elite listening room). All to personal taste & ears but to me, the Kef Reference 1 speakers really stood out. The B&W 804D3 sound (I've had the CM5 for 9 years) is so distinctive but after extensive listening, I chose the KR1. I would have liked to buy them at that store but if not for the Magnolia Designer even highly recommending the KR1, I wouldn't have even had heard of them to choose. I took the wife to Magnolia as the Florida Kef rep brought in his speakers for us to listen to them. Wife agreed these were a step above the properly powered B&W 804D3. Magnolia didn't have the Personas but Persona 3F were my third choice (the 9H is a different story but outside of my budget).

As for cables, I'm going to order http://cleardaycables.com/double-shotgun/, getting tremendous reviews and for $450 or so for bi-wired & bi-amp, plus spade one end, bananas on other end.

Likely to add a power amp too and stick with Rotel as it likely is designed to work best with the Rotel RAP 1580 AVR I'm using.

Fun time$$$ Should have the new speakers this week and will post pictures
Very cool! Out of curiosity, if you were considering a bookshelf vs a floor standing, why not compare the 805D3 to the Reference 1? That seems like a fairer fight, as the 805D3 also has a larger mid-woofer than the 804D3. The cnet review also mentions that both are stellar performers, but really just a slightly different sound - Ref 1 can dig a bit deeper, 805 for a bit more clarity. Either way, I am sure you're going to love the Ref 1!
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post #25 of 219 Old 02-27-2018, 11:10 AM
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Hi guys,
As promised here are some pictures. Loving these Ref 3s! Need to get the REf 2c center in the near future.
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I would LOVE to have a pair of Reference 5 speakers...

But I guess I will just have to settle for a pair of GoldenEar Triton References.

Shopping List:
TV: Samsung Q90R, or LG C9, or Sony ...
Blu-ray: Panasonic UB820, or Sony X800M, or Pioneer Elite LX500
Soundbar: Samsung Q90R, or Sennheiser Ambeo, or...
AVR and Speakers: Marantz 8012, or... and GE Triton Reference, or...
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post #27 of 219 Old 02-27-2018, 02:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firstorlast View Post
Very cool! Out of curiosity, if you were considering a bookshelf vs a floor standing, why not compare the 805D3 to the Reference 1? That seems like a fairer fight, as the 805D3 also has a larger mid-woofer than the 804D3. The cnet review also mentions that both are stellar performers, but really just a slightly different sound - Ref 1 can dig a bit deeper, 805 for a bit more clarity. Either way, I am sure you're going to love the Ref 1!
Came down to sound preference. In a room with the proper power going to the units, the 805 sounded great but for us, it was really a close call between the 804 & Kef R1. I have the Kef reference 1 installed today and they sound great. Time for the break in period. Also, I'm likely going to add at least 1 Rotel RB1592 power amp, 2X350 WPC. Depends on how well the sales year goes...might add 2 and dedicate to each speaker. Plus, would need a new Salamander AV furniture to better store the new gear. The BDI is 9 years old and staring to look that way... Plus, I'm resisting upgrading the power cords but likely will give in to the What If?... there goes another $9-10k... Fun Time$$$
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post #28 of 219 Old 02-27-2018, 04:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fritzjurg View Post
I listened to the Paradigm Persona 3F, B&W 804D3, and Kef Reference 1 at http://www.integritysound.com/ in Sarasota. Great shop. Right amount of power to each set-up. At Magnolia, they had to move to move the 804s to the Elite room to get right amount of power (they were getting less than 50% recommend power in the non-Elite listening room). All to personal taste & ears but to me, the Kef Reference 1 speakers really stood out. The B&W 804D3 sound (I've had the CM5 for 9 years) is so distinctive but after extensive listening, I chose the KR1. I would have liked to buy them at that store but if not for the Magnolia Designer even highly recommending the KR1, I wouldn't have even had heard of them to choose. I took the wife to Magnolia as the Florida Kef rep brought in his speakers for us to listen to them. Wife agreed these were a step above the properly powered B&W 804D3. Magnolia didn't have the Personas but Persona 3F were my third choice (the 9H is a different story but outside of my budget).

As for cables, I'm going to order http://cleardaycables.com/double-shotgun/, getting tremendous reviews and for $450 or so for bi-wired & bi-amp, plus spade one end, bananas on other end.

Likely to add a power amp too and stick with Rotel as it likely is designed to work best with the Rotel RAP 1580 AVR I'm using.

Fun time$$$ Should have the new speakers this week and will post pictures
Congrats on the purchase! I too recently bit the bullet and have a pair of Focal Sopra 2's on the way.

If I were in your position, I'd definitely try out the Ref 1 with your RAP 1580 before you decide a separate amp is best. I've heard the 1580 before, and it hustles.
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post #29 of 219 Old 02-27-2018, 04:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firstorlast View Post
Very cool! Out of curiosity, if you were considering a bookshelf vs a floor standing, why not compare the 805D3 to the Reference 1? That seems like a fairer fight, as the 805D3 also has a larger mid-woofer than the 804D3. The cnet review also mentions that both are stellar performers, but really just a slightly different sound - Ref 1 can dig a bit deeper, 805 for a bit more clarity. Either way, I am sure you're going to love the Ref 1!
Personally, I think the 804 is a more comparable speaker as it and the Ref 1 are both three way designs while the 805 is a two way. I've only heard the Reference 3, but have heard B&W's D3 line top to bottom several times. IMO B&W and KEF speakers sound absolutely nothing alike...which isn't a bad thing as pretty much all speakers at that level are lovely.
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post #30 of 219 Old 02-28-2018, 12:08 AM
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Kef Reference Owners

I’ve always found the B&W sound to be somewhat veiled, where as the Kef Refs are far more open and detailed. Spent a few days at the bristol audio show and sat in on the B&W demo, they sounded overly bright to me. Kef were running the cute LS50 active wireless, setup with a turntable, streaming and AV. The sound was simply stunning, given its size it truly is an incredible speaker. I honestly think KEFs current Range is on he money with promises of even greater things around the corner.
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