Question Replacing KEF Q55 speakers

Jun 23, 2022
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Hi All

I’m new to this forum.

I’ve had a hifi system since my 21st birthday in 2002 which is still going strong. However I’ve recently moved house and decided I want some speakers that are less bulky.

it’s nothing special but I’ve had a marantz CD player and amplifier and KEF Q55 speakers.

To be honest, I’ve never liked the KEFs that much. I listen almost exclusively to classical and I’ve always found these speakers lack good treble. They have a strong mid-range but I find with classical you need a strong treble or the music sounds dull.

I am looking for a replacement sound system with some smaller speakers but I still want a big sound and crucially I want a really bright, aggressive, in your face treble frequency.

overall system costs somewhere between £1,000-£2,000.

any recommendations for replacement speakers that will satisfy what I am asking for?

I have heard some of the B&W models and they have a brighter treble that is more what I have in mind.

many thanks

Jonathan
 
Which Marantz amplifier do you have? This may limit the loudspeakers you can look at. If you outstretch the capabilities of the amplifier, even the best speakers in your price range won’t sound as good as they should.

Ophidian will provide a smaller package with a more energetic treble, if you want an improvement without getting aggressive, it just depends how small you want to go. The best thing to do, if you’re keeping your amplifier, is to take it along to a dealer and try some speakers out for yourself - the amplifier/speaker combination is an important one, and is personal to you as we all hear differently - it’s no good hearing speakers with different amplifiers, and ideally you need to try some options out in your own room, as some speakers work better than others in certain types of rooms. Your room is the important one, and it’s size and physical construction will favour certain speakers over others.
 
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Jun 23, 2022
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🙂 I've never seen anyone actually ask for that before.
Even normal, open, clear, neutral treble is too much for some poor sensitive souls to bear.
For that reason you should get plenty of recommendations for speakers that people have detested 👍
I find that odd. I had assumed everyone wanted a bright treble. To me it’s the higher frequencies that brings life to the music. If you don’t have strong higher frequencies, the music sounds dull. Also the older you get, the more you struggle to hear the higher frequencies so you need to boost them to compensate. Though deafness is not why I want this. I’ve always liked higher treble frequencies since I was a child.
 

Edbostan

Well-known member
Aug 5, 2021
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I find that odd. I had assumed everyone wanted a bright treble. To me it’s the higher frequencies that brings life to the music. If you don’t have strong higher frequencies, the music sounds dull. Also the older you get, the more you struggle to hear the higher frequencies so you need to boost them to compensate. Though deafness is not why I want this. I’ve always liked higher treble frequencies since I was a child.
Have you tried the latest Kef range?
 

bigfish786

Moderator
Jan 29, 2013
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I think the word “bright” is generally used to describe a tweeter that is “too bright” .
maybe You are actually wanting a clean, clear and crisp treble from the tweeter.
you Can always have a little experiment with the kefs. Try raising them up a little, see if the treble increases or decreases, same as moving them out towards you, and toe in and out, these small changes can make a big difference in sound, you may just find a sweeter sweet spot.
 

Gray

Well-known member
To me it’s the higher frequencies that brings life to the music.
...and to me, I couldn't agree more.
A speaker with anything less than neutral HF is ruled out completely by me as an option - however good it is in other areas.
I can't stand what's known as 'rolled off' treble.

It was just your terms, 'aggressive' and 'in your face'. Those are descriptions only ever used by those complaining that a speaker wasn't for them.
....unless that really is what you're after 🤔. In which case you could experiment very cheaply with some piezo horn tweeters.
Because of their high impedance, they can be connected directly in parallel with your current speakers.....it won't be the most refined or neutral, but you will get treble.
 
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twinkletoes

Well-known member
Nov 16, 2021
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Reading your statement of "Bright and in your face", i believe the word you're looking for is dynamic.
I've found that kefs of that age can sound pretty sweet almost soft when partnered with certain gear. Used to use Rotel and NAD to push them out of their shell but ultimately, like you, I found them lacking so went the mission route.

There are a few brands that do what you're asking for though

if you're going second-hand id recommend mission, specifically the M74i or the slightly older m74 you can pick them up for around 150 quid and to be honest will rock your world and go loud with ease and can handle massive dynamic swings. They are an exciting listen, if you really want to lean into the excitement a NAD 320bee made them sing.

Modern designs (new) i'd start with some of the most dynamic speakers around, the Klipsch premier range. If they don't float your boat any brand that is horn-loaded, triangle, JBL brands of that type. and try and keep your sensitivity above oreund the 90DB mark easy on the amp and you get a more dynamic sound. Also easier to listen to lower volumes at night.

But David does have a point Marantz amps can have a wooly warm sound so it may not be your speakers at all
,kef q55 are screaming for a Yamaha, rotel or NAD something to really push those upper frequencies. And those brands are tuned for excitement. Especially NAD

Just my 2 cents
 

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