View Full Version : speaker upgrade question
I'm thinking of upgrading my speaker system and would like some advice. I have a pair of somewhat old Kef mains and was looking to add either a sub or center channel speaker to them. (Keeping in mind that both are around $400 each). A few questions: Which would be more important to add first? Would that be better than buying a whole home theatre speaker system in one go? Thanks in advance for replying. (Replies especially useful from past/current Kef owners)
01-16-01, 08:14 PM
Wow, another classic KEF owner! Which ones do you have? I have a pair of 103.2's (redwood). I still love them. While I have seperate hi-end components for them, I decided not to set that up in our new house and going with home theater instead. Warning, if you read any of my earlier posts, you will know that I'm new to home theater. But I do know what I like in sound!
Today, I ordered a KEF model 80c center channel speaker from OneCall ($180.00 includes shipping).
The folks at KEF are very helpful. I e-mailed them directly asking if they a) recommend using my speakers in in home theater system and b) what other speakers they would recommend. They were VERY helpful, and straight forward. In my case they recommended the 95.2 or 100 center channel. However, I really did not want to spend nearly 350.00 on the center channel (or 500 on the 100). So I'm "trying" the 80c to see how it goes. Right now just using some inexpensive in/out speakers for surrounds, as I want to go with built-ins later.
At this point I'm going without a sub. Not a recommendation, just what I'm doing. KEF recommened the 35b in my case. However, when I do get a sub, I probably will try one of the 20 series. 12" powered sub just seems to much to me.
So my recommendions: a)E-mail KEF, tell them what you have, and what you want to do. b)Find a good dealer. There was only one in my area, and they got real skitish when I told them I wanted to TRY one 1st. Even though I promised to BUY one. So I dealing with OneCall.com. Seemed helpful. c)And personally, I would go for the center before the sub. But I'm not just a huge bass freak. As a KEF owner yourself you are probably more interested in accurate, natural sound.
My center channel should be here thursday or friday at the latest, will let you know how it sounds.
overall, I'd say get a sub first unless your KEF's really handle the bass. a center speaker is nice, but I assume you are using a phantom mode right now to sort of duplicate the effect. the sub frequencies really add a lot to the effect.
Wow - thank you very much for your reply, Sdallnct - I'd be very interested in what you think of your CC speaker. I was thinking of getting the 100, but if the 80 does a good job at half the price, I'd buy it. My Kefs aren't as classic as yours I'm afraid - just a pair of floorstanding Q series (50 or 60) speakers (but I really like them a lot).
Svadas, my priorities (as they stand now) would be a Center Channel Speaker, Subwoofer, Rear Surronds... but I'm going to email Kef and see what they suggest (probably the 100) and go from there. Again, thanks for your input.
[This message has been edited by stingo (edited January 16, 2001).]
01-16-01, 10:35 PM
Here is the KEF web site. Sorry did not post it before. http://www.kef.com/
You will note under home theater, they have a "matching guide". Also while I certainly think what KEF says is a great place to START, remember the best system (audio or home theater) is the one YOU like, and get the most use out of.
BYW, the cc Model 100 has gotten some GREAT reviews. Just way out of my budget. I hope I'm happy with the 80c, if not I only plan on going as high as the 95.2.
01-19-01, 09:41 AM
Got my cc speaker, KEF Model 80c. While I'm still playing with settings, angle (the rear foot is adjustable), overall I'm VERY pleased with it. After listening a while I went to a local dealer and listened to the 95.2. The 95.2 seemed heavier, and more substantial, physically. Problem was with different systems, different main speakers, different settings, I really didn't know if any difference I was hearing was the speaker or other stuff. So I gave up on the comparisons, and went back and listened to what I had. Very happy with it. Very natural sound. No straining. Very easy to listen to. We listened to TV the rest of the night on it, and am very happy. For the price, recommended. Besides for the price diffence to the 95.2 I could buy 15-18 new movies. Or start saving for the sub.
Good luck with your decision.