AVS Forum banner
  • If you've ever wanted to ask questions on industry standards when setting up your home theater, you're in luck! Peter Aylett, 30 year integrator and partner at HTE Acoustic Interior Design will be answering questions until Sun. Nov. 28th! The thread is now open, and you can join in here!
Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
437 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have heard the new REF line 201, 203, 205 and 207 several times but not compared to others. I am interested descriptions of their sound and product. What do you think of these?


1. Since they are British and have a similar look and HyperTweeter I keep comparing them to B&W Nautilus. Are these lines similar? I've only heard the N804 by B&W.


2. They seem to be premium priced but that's subjective and a relative comment. I guess I would be impressed if their store prices were reduced by 50%.


3. I've been told they are more popular in Britain than B&W but aren't nearly as popular in the US. Is this a marketing and distribution issue or are there different sounds that fit different tastes? My perception is marketing and distribution.


4. The older reference line (ie REF 107 used at $1500) seem to be much cheaper. Are the models dramatically better or would the Ref 107 be considerred a good value for those that like the 203 but not the price? I guess the supply in the US is limited discounting on the new line in the used market.


5. How would you describe their sonic signature?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
251 Posts
I heard the KEFs about a year and a half ago in Palo Alto. I don't remember much about the way they sounded but I liked them a lot. The dealer featured KEF and Linn, and I came away liking the Linns better (not a lot, though), and the Linns were cheaper too. You should give them a listen at a dealer if you have the chance.


However, for what they cost you can definitely get more speaker for less, either new or used. I would say the same thing about B&W, who I think are definitely inferior to KEF. I don't think B&W offers good value at all.


Tim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
643 Posts
Hoots,

Have you listened to the XQ series yet? I'm trying to find some to listen to this weekend and I'll let you know what I find. I have read that they really fall in between the reference series and their normal Q's.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
437 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The xQ does seem to have a better value proposition to a price sensitive buyer like me, but I haven't heard them.


I keep hoping with time the Ref 205's might come down in price on the used market. After hearing the 207's I can handle the step down to the 205's but by the time I get to the 203s I'm hearing a speaker I like notablly less than the other pairs but they are still over $4k/pr... I guess it's all relative but I'd be mentally more excited if the $4k speakers were top of the line.


I guess I'm not really the target customer...a better fit for the xQ and other brands.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Kef was similar in price and response to B&W until this recent model change. Now they are nothing like them. B&W does not have the frequency response of the new Kefs. B&W-up to 20-23 khz. Kef-up to 50+khz. The theory is that the extended inaudible frequency range combines with the audible frequency range to create previously unheard harmonics. I believe Tannoy has similar technology.

They are priced according to this new freq. range. (I still think it's overpriced though)

I think that marketing and distribution play a large part in the smallish market that Kef currently has.

Even the last Reference series was more reasonable in price. Try looking for used 2~1, 2~2, 2~3, or 2~4(top end).


I have heard the XQ played against the 200 series. The XQ is much better than the Q series and is almost as good as the previous reference series(the sound seems a little thinner XQ7 versus 2~2). The 205s were amazing. It will be a few years before they come up on the used market though or the price comes down.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
643 Posts
Hoots,

There are a few KEF dealers in So. Cal that i'm going to try and hit up this weekend. If they have the XQ series then I'll let you know how it goes. I might even buy a par if they will let me take them for the weekend and bring them back if I don't like them. I'm going to Mad Dog's house to hear the Onix Ref 1's and would love to compare them to the KEF.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
437 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yes...it would be great fun to compare the new KEF Reference to the Onyx Ref 1 and 2. I think the KEF Ref 201's are twice the price of the Onyx Ref 1.

Onyx is coming out with a super tweeter similar to the KEF HyperTweeter idea which seems to really shine with SACD. I'm not sure how much better the HyperTweeter sounds on regular CD.


After hearing the 207 and 205 it's hard to drop down to the 201 and 203.


For my tastes and budget the 205 (and even the 203) is just too expensive.


I'd be interested in the top of the line XQ and especially how it comares to the Onyx Ref, but my local KEF dealer only has REF and Onyx REF is pretty new and mail order.


Would you say these are neutral?
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top