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Blade (front) Runner

CnoEvil

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Kef Blades.......Oh how I want some, but my Dry Rot adventure has put pay to even dreaming.

I spent the morning listening to these wing-shaped beauties (white), which were on the end of a Linn Klimax DS/1 + Bi-amped Majiks (the Akurate was lent out).

It may seem strange to say that these £20k transducers are good value, but in the context of highend, they are (imo)......I have heard the likes of £30k Focals, and I much prefer these, in fact they can (imo) go head to head with most of what's out there, and are the best that I've heard, which includes the £70k Muons.

It's easy to see that this is where the R Series get their character from, but the Blades just do it sooo much better. They have crystal clear, but beautifully judged treble, which has no hint of grit, grain or forwardness. The mid-range is accurate and emotive, and the bass is powerful, clean and seismically deep..............these things just get out of the way of the music in quite a remarkable fashion, and the driver array is so "time aligned", that you can wander about and they still remain coherent. The remarkable thing was that it was all from "relatively" modest amplification, which just shows the potential they have......though the Klimax DS/1 remains the best digital source I've had the pleasure to hear, and undoubtedly had its part to play in the brilliance of the sound.

In the afternoon, I directly compared the R100s with the LS50s, which were on the end of a Linn Majik DSM. The R100s are great little speakers, but when the LS50s were swapped in, there was a very noticeable improvement in immediacy, punch and detail. They were just more accurate and controlled......my daughter who was with me, described it like the sound had jumped from 2D to 3D, as it just grabbed your attention and forced you to listen to them, like a persistent toddler tugging at your shirt sleeve.

To distill a £1m concept speaker to a £20k commercial one, is no mean feat, but its legacy is in the brilliance of the R Series, which gives the rest of us a taste of nirvana.
 

plastic penguin

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Apr 28, 2008
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CnoEvil said:
Kef Blades.......Oh how I want some, but my Dry Rot adventure has put pay to even dreaming.

I spent the morning listening to these wing-shaped beauties (white), which were on the end of a Linn Klimax DS/1 + Bi-amped Majiks (the Akurate was lent out).

It may seem strange to say that these £20k transducers are good value, but in the context of highend, they are imo......I have heard the likes of £30k Focals, and I much prefer these, in fact they can (imo) go head to head with most that's out there, and are the best that I've heard, which includes the £70k Muons.

It's easy to see that these where the R Series get their character from, but these just do it sooo much better. They have crystal clear, but beautifully judged treble, which has no hint of grit, grain or forwardness. The mid-range is accurate and emotive, and the bass is powerful, clean and seismically deep..............these things just get out of the way of the music in quite a remarkable fashion, and the driver array is so "time aligned", that you can wander about and they still remain coherent. The remarkable thing was that it was all from "relatively" modest amplification, which just shows the potential they have......though the Klimax DS/1 remains the best digital source I've had the pleasure to hear, and undoubtedly had its part to play in the brilliance of the sound.

In the afternoon, I directly compared the R100s with the LS50s, which were on the end of a Linn DSM. The R100s are great little speakers, but when the LS50s were swapped in, there was a very noticeable improvement in immediacy, punch and detail. They were just more accurate and controlled......my daughter who was with me, described it like the sound had jumped from 2D to 3D, as it just grabbed your attention and forced you to listen to them, like a persistent toddler tugging at your shirt sleeve.

To distill a £1m concept speaker to a £20k commercial one, is no mean feat, but its legacy is in the brilliance of the R Series, which gives the rest of us a taste of nirvana.
When little'un clapped eyes on the Blades at Unilet last week they scared the c**p out of her. When she asked price and I said about 20k she replied, "yeah, right. Why aren't you friends with David Beckham?..." Bless her.

They are staggering to look at. In fact, like the Gyrodec, they'd look more at home at the Tate Gallery.

Your observations on the R300 and LSs are interesting. Must say the R300 look out of proportion to me.
 

CnoEvil

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plastic penguin said:
When little'un clapped eyes on the Blades at Unilet last week they scared the c**p out of her. When she asked price and I said about 20k she replied, "yeah, right. Why aren't you friends with David Beckham?..." Bless her.

They are staggering to look at. In fact, like the Gyrodec, they'd look more at home at the Tate Gallery.

Your observations on the R300 and LSs are interesting. Must say the R300 look out of proportion to me.
This time round it was the R100s, which are the baby brothers of the R300 (which I described in a previous thread).

For me personally, I would never be happy with the R100s, if the LS50s were a viable option.
 

plastic penguin

Well-known member
Apr 28, 2008
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19,870
CnoEvil said:
plastic penguin said:
When little'un clapped eyes on the Blades at Unilet last week they scared the c**p out of her. When she asked price and I said about 20k she replied, "yeah, right. Why aren't you friends with David Beckham?..." Bless her.

They are staggering to look at. In fact, like the Gyrodec, they'd look more at home at the Tate Gallery.

Your observations on the R300 and LSs are interesting. Must say the R300 look out of proportion to me.
This time round it was the R100s, which are the baby brothers of the R300 (which I described in a previous thread).

For me personally, I would never be happy with the R100s, if the LS50s were a viable option.
:oops:

This happens when keep recommending a particular model - I just presume.
 

Frank Harvey

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Jun 27, 2008
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CnoEvil said:
It may seem strange to say that these £20k transducers are good value, but in the context of highend, they are (imo)......I have heard the likes of £30k Focals, and I much prefer these, in fact they can (imo) go head to head with most of what's out there, and are the best that I've heard, which includes the £70k Muons.
Once you research the design a bit and understand the technical aspects and the reasoning behind the visuals, you appreciate the speaker much more - not only in what they do, but also, more importantly, what they don't do. For me, they make many high end designs (which are almost the polar opposite design-wise) redundant.

In the afternoon, I directly compared the R100s with the LS50s, which were on the end of a Linn Majik DSM. The R100s are great little speakers, but when the LS50s were swapped in, there was a very noticeable improvement in immediacy, punch and detail. They were just more accurate and controlled......my daughter who was with me, described it like the sound had jumped from 2D to 3D, as it just grabbed your attention and forced you to listen to them, like a persistent toddler tugging at your shirt sleeve.
The line I've highlighted in bold pretty much sums them up. Most people will see them as a fancy looking version of the R100, but they sound quite different. They sound more like headphones than speakers.
 

CnoEvil

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Aug 21, 2009
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David@FrankHarvey said:
CnoEvil said:
......my daughter who was with me, described it like the sound had jumped from 2D to 3D, as it just grabbed your attention and forced you to listen to them, like a persistent toddler tugging at your shirt sleeve.
The line I've highlighted in bold pretty much sums them up. Most people will see them as a fancy looking version of the R100, but they sound quite different. They sound more like headphones than speakers.
Out of the mouth of babes...

It's amazing how often "non audiophiles" cut through the crp and get straight to the heart of the matter, with a throw away comment. My daughter said more elequently in a couple of words than I usually can in several paragraphs of waffle.
 

matt49

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Cno, presumably they need a pretty large room, or would the side-firing woofers be tolerant of smaller spaces?

I'd love to hear them (on the end of a Devialet).

:cheers:

Matt
 

CnoEvil

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matt49 said:
Cno, presumably they need a pretty large room, or would the side-firing woofers be tolerant of smaller spaces?

I'd love to hear them (on the end of a Devialet).

:cheers:

Matt
That's one for David.....I suspect they need a reasonably big room to let them breath (I hate that expression, but I can't think of a better one).

Be very careful. I suspect after hearing them paired with the Devialet, everything you hear afterwards will sound broken.

I will say this again. The Blades are seriously good.....and relatively easy to drive.

Michael (of Lyric) had put a £1 coin on its edge, on top (front lip) of the speaker. He then chose some seriously bass heavy music and turned up the wick to concert levels. There was no movement of the coin whatsoever. If you walked over to the speaker with lead feet, the coin would fall off! Now that's what I call a well damped speaker.
 

Frank Harvey

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Jun 27, 2008
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CnoEvil said:
Michael (of Lyric) had put a £1 coin on its edge, on top (front lip) of the speaker. He then chose some seriously bass heavy music and turned up the wick to concert levels. There was no movement of the coin whatsoever. If you walked over to the speaker with lead feet, the coin would fall off! Now that's what I call a well damped speaker.
Technically, wrong choice of words. There's very little damping in them, which us due to the force cancelling drivers and also the shape of the cabinet (amongst other things). They need very little internal damping, which is one of the reasons why they sound so good. If you design something properly in the first place, there's no need for little things to be done to counteract issues produced by sub standard design.

Maybe "inert" is a better word. :)
 

CnoEvil

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David@FrankHarvey said:
Maybe "inert" is a better word. :)
I thought being totally inert made them well damped. :doh:

I believe the clever design allowed the cabinets to be made out of cheaper fibreglass, rather than the more expensive carbon fibre that Prodrive had used on the original concept version....and still work perfectly.
 

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