• If you ever spot Spam (either in the forums, or received via forum direct message) please use the Report button at the bottom of each post to make sure a Moderator can handle it quickly. Thanks for your help in keeping things running smoothly!

The TRUTH about the KEF LS 50

Page 3 - Seeking answers? Join the What HiFi community: the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products.
Status
Not open for further replies.

12th Monkey

Well-known member
Aug 31, 2015
932
603
11,770
Of course they sold a lot. Mags like What Hifi and Stereophile BSed people into buying them. People bought LS50s thinking they were getting a giant killer, a Class A product that could compete with 50K$ speakers from Magico and Wilson.
How disappointed they were... That is why the used market is flooded with used LS50s and has been for years.
Anyone who believes that something in that price range could possibly compete with the very high end is a fool. Why don't you produce a review where WHF says anything even approximating to that?

As for the other replies: Motivated reasoning - Wikipedia
 

matthewpiano

Well-known member
Nov 23, 2007
490
314
19,270
Of course they sold a lot. Mags like What Hifi and Stereophile BSed people into buying them. People bought LS50s thinking they were getting a giant killer, a Class A product that could compete with 50K$ speakers from Magico and Wilson.
How disappointed they were... That is why the used market is flooded with used LS50s and has been for years.
Nobody, including KEF and the magazines, has claimed the LS50s can compete with 50k Wilsons and the like. Neither could they compete with KEF's own Blade, which I've heard . They are very different products for very different customers. Many of us with speakers around the price of the LS50s could never accommodate such speakers as Wilsons or KEF Blades physically, let alone afford the price of entry in the first place - even more so when you consider the huge cost of appropriate source and amplification.

There is plenty of choice and competition around the £1k price point including models from Spendor, Dali, B&W, Russell K, Proac, Monitor Audio, Fyne Audio and Wharfedale. I've heard most of these in one setting or another. I've owned Spendor A1s, and I still own Wharfedale Linton 85s as well as the KEFs and the cheaper Dali Oberon 5s.

For me, in my room and with the huge variability of recording quality across the wide range of music I listen to, the Spendors didn't work. They need to be played at higher volumes to really sing, and they can be brutally exposing of poor recordings.
The Linton 85s need more space than I can give them at present, particularly from the rear wall. Give them that space and they can sound wonderful, but without it they can sound as confined as they look.

This does not mean either the Spendors or the Wharfedales are bad speakers, and somehow not as good as the KEFs. It also doesn't means I'm going to go out of my way to make myself look silly by rubbishing 2 very well thought-out and executed speakers. It's simply a matter, to borrow an old saying, of different horses for different courses. So far, and to my ears, the KEFs are working extremely well in my room and are doing justice to a wide range of music. That doesn't mean that I would reject other competitors, such as Russell K's fabulous speakers. If I get round to selling the Wharfedales and Dalis, I may even buy some Red 50s or Red 100s as my alternative speakers for those itchy-feet moments. Some others may prefer the Russell Ks to the KEFs, some may prefer the KEFs and some, like me, may value both for their different qualities. None of those is wrong, it's a simple reflection of how subjective this all is.
 

Surly Sid

Well-known member
Feb 6, 2020
213
60
870
Anyone who believes that something in that price range could possibly compete with the very high end is a fool. Why don't you produce a review where WHF says anything even approximating to that?

As for the other replies: Motivated reasoning - Wikipedia
Stereophile has the LS50 in Class A (restricted low frequency). Class A is the best of the best according to them. The LS50 is in the same group as speakers costing many times its price, and many times better. The KEF LS 50 in the same class as the Harbeth 30.1? Sid don't think so!

 

12th Monkey

Well-known member
Aug 31, 2015
932
603
11,770
The Stereophile piece begins with these words:

Class A "Loudspeakers" are sufficiently idiosyncratic and differ enough from one another that prospective customers should read Stereophile's original reviews in their entirety for descriptions of the sounds. We have therefore just listed every system or combination that at least one of Stereophile's reviewers feels, as a result of his or her experience, approaches the current state of the art in loudspeaker design.

Anyone interpreting that as saying it will humble things costing vastly more is simply choosing to read it that way. State of the art in design doesn't say anything about absolute or comparative merit.

This thread is getting silly - I'm not bothering to dignify it with any more views.
 

Friesiansam

Well-known member
Feb 3, 2015
328
206
11,270
Surly Sid, We get it, you don't like Kef LS50s. You know what, earlier this year I sent back a pair of headphones. They had been given glowing reviews, here and elsewhere but, they just didn't suit me, so I returned them.

What I don't do, unlike yourself, is then go on a one-man crusade/uber-rant, trying to browbeat everyone into believing that all positive reviews are biased because they don't agree with me.
 

matthewpiano

Well-known member
Nov 23, 2007
490
314
19,270
@Surly Sid, you may find it advantageous to read the content you share in support of your tirade.

I directly quote from your link - "In 13 years of working at Stereophile, I have not seen another component that offers such a radical combination of value and performance."

The key here is "...combination of value and performance". Picking something out as a top recommendation isn't based on absolute performance alone, and it doesn't mean either directly or by implication that it is 'as good as' or 'better than' something costing multiple times more. It means that it offers genuinely interesting technology and, in the opinion of the reviewer(s) offers exceptional performance for its price.

Anyone with any sense knows that reviews in magazines don't represent the whole picture, but that doesn't mean that the products they pick should be dismissed. Reviews are a starting point that may or may not help you find what you are looking for. A well written review can make an interesting read if approached by the reader with a degree of objectivity, and with a sincere interest in hi-fi.

I'm not interested in being a crusader for the LS50s, or any hi-fi component. I'm enjoying listening to music through my speakers more than I've enjoyed listening for a long time, but I'm not going to tap away being an evangelist and trying to force my experience on people who haven't asked for it. They suit me, but they won't suit everyone. What anyone else thinks doesn't change my enjoyment of them. What I don't understand is why you are so intent on slamming the LS50s and those who have reviewed them positively. It's a pair of speakers. If you don't like them, it's nobody's loss. If your opinion is based on solid personal experience of the KEFs, be secure in knowing that they aren't for you and that something different suits you better. KEF won't lose any sleep over that, reviewers won't and neither should you.

I'm done with this thread now.
 

PrylarSwe

Active member
Nov 29, 2020
4
2
25
Matthew, I suspect you're wasting your time there!

It's strange how often someone promoting a fringe view is suddenly and completely supported by a mysterious new arrival!
"Mysterious new arrival"... you seem to be the forums conspiracy theorist, right? No, I am not supporting any "fringe view". I stumbled across the latest LS50 review on WHF (which obviously was heavily sponsored by KEF. Not obvious to you? Fake hifi reviews are the least of your problems then!!), saw that people were posting comments and the only way to post a comment is to become a registered member. There goes your fine conspiracy theory. And what I posted about that speaker is actually completely true. You don't hear the mentioned flaws? Check your ears. Your mate (btw, there seem to be bunch of you guys supporting and liking each other here... are you dating too?) who asked for elaboration and stated that "matching and setting up" makes LS50 capable of reproducing female voices... ok, here is an elaboration for you. If Alison Krauss or Eva Cassidy sounded like they do on LS50 neither of them would EVER sell another record. And regarding bass.. if you hear ANYTHING below 60Hz with +-0db coming out of that resin box, then you have superman ears. And listening to music with nothing below 60Hz... bluetooth speaker I use when I fish goes deeper. "Setting up and matching"??? C'mon, make a decision... is LS50 best combo of sound and price or is it not? If it requires "setting up and matching"... then it's DEFINITELy not. Then another "I know everything, I've read it in WHF" champion stated that "not fair to compare LS50 to 50k Wilsons"... Who was doing that??? I can compare LS50 to a bunch of mid-level standmounters in the same price range and ANY of these is better than LS50. Unfortunately no british designs there besides Quad S2. But S2 is not briitsh, it's chinese. Regardless, it's a better speaker than LS50. The only valid comment I've seen regarding the subject is that LS50 owners rather live in denial than to confess their mistake in buying LS50 :) That was so good and so true. The only thing missing here is a couple of posts from "hifi freaks" or "I know that this must sound good, it costs waaayyyy too much" instructing people to buy cables costing 1000/meter because "with them the treble is romantically coloured and the bass goes deeper than you thought the speaker was capable of". So, now you've got your comment. Hope you understand at least a couple of things better now.

And, we agree on one thing - Phillips Pronto was a cool gadget. But for 25 years ago, kinda. Time for upgrade? Check WHF reviews, choose one that's got five stars, then you are sure you've made an excellent choice. But if you need help and a realistic view, ask someone here on the forum. SOME people here still use objectivity.

Some of you experts here may react on my english too. I am from Sweden and aware of my language flaws. But my english is good enough to recognise fake reviews and write objective comments.
 
Last edited:

Surly Sid

Well-known member
Feb 6, 2020
213
60
870
So Darko put the LS50 II wireless in his products of the year. BIG surprise. Darko has the KEF LS50, KEF LS50 meta, KEF LS50 wireless, KEF LS50 wireless 2. and the KEF reference.
Does anyone believe Darko PAID for all of those speakers? Pay for play. KEF is excellent at handing out goodies...
 

12th Monkey

Well-known member
Aug 31, 2015
932
603
11,770
"Mysterious new arrival"... you seem to be the forums conspiracy theorist, right? No, I am not supporting any "fringe view". I stumbled across the latest LS50 review on WHF (which obviously was heavily sponsored by KEF. Not obvious to you? Fake hifi reviews are the least of your problems then!!), saw that people were posting comments and the only way to post a comment is to become a registered member. There goes your fine conspiracy theory. And what I posted about that speaker is actually completely true. You don't hear the mentioned flaws? Check your ears. Your mate (btw, there seem to be bunch of you guys supporting and liking each other here... are you dating too?) who asked for elaboration and stated that "matching and setting up" makes LS50 capable of reproducing female voices... ok, here is an elaboration for you. If Alison Krauss or Eva Cassidy sounded like they do on LS50 neither of them would EVER sell another record. And regarding bass.. if you hear ANYTHING below 60Hz with +-0db coming out of that resin box, then you have superman ears. And listening to music with nothing below 60Hz... bluetooth speaker I use when I fish goes deeper. "Setting up and matching"??? C'mon, make a decision... is LS50 best combo of sound and price or is it not? If it requires "setting up and matching"... then it's DEFINITELy not. Then another "I know everything, I've read it in WHF" champion stated that "not fair to compare LS50 to 50k Wilsons"... Who was doing that??? I can compare LS50 to a bunch of mid-level standmounters in the same price range and ANY of these is better than LS50. Unfortunately no british designs there besides Quad S2. But S2 is not briitsh, it's chinese. Regardless, it's a better speaker than LS50. The only valid comment I've seen regarding the subject is that LS50 owners rather live in denial than to confess their mistake in buying LS50 :) That was so good and so true. The only thing missing here is a couple of posts from "hifi freaks" or "I know that this must sound good, it costs waaayyyy too much" instructing people to buy cables costing 1000/meter because "with them the treble is romantically coloured and the bass goes deeper than you thought the speaker was capable of". So, now you've got your comment. Hope you understand at least a couple of things better now.

And, we agree on one thing - Phillips Pronto was a cool gadget. But for 25 years ago, kinda. Time for upgrade? Check WHF reviews, choose one that's got five stars, then you are sure you've made an excellent choice. But if you need help and a realistic view, ask someone here on the forum. SOME people here still use objectivity.

Some of you experts here may react on my english too. I am from Sweden and aware of my language flaws. But my english is good enough to recognise fake reviews and write objective comments.
Hey, if you're not a sockpuppet or friend of Sid's I take it back, but you can perhaps see why someone might reach that conclusion given the timing and that it was your first post. The references to dating etc are a bit silly though, if you can rein that in you'll get on fine here.

I've never found anything that works as well as Pronto or is anything like as customisable - do you have any suggestions? Logitech stuff is simply not as flexible or, to my mind, as nice to use. Besides, my Prontos are 'new' - unopened stock turned up in Australia earlier this year, so I nabbed two.
 
Last edited:

TrevC

Well-known member
Jun 12, 2013
361
163
19,070
Of course they sold a lot. Mags like What Hifi and Stereophile BSed people into buying them. People bought LS50s thinking they were getting a giant killer, a Class A product that could compete with 50K$ speakers from Magico and Wilson.
How disappointed they were... That is why the used market is flooded with used LS50s and has been for years.
There's no reason that the KEFs should be assumed to be inferior to any others of a similar size, regardless of cost. The opposition could simply be overpriced, and in the case of Wilson Tune tots, also ugly and inferior.
 

PrylarSwe

Active member
Nov 29, 2020
4
2
25
Indeed we do, that your rant is so similar to your 'soulmate', that it is hard to believe there is not a link...

Any other hardware we should steer clear of, because you and SS don't like it?
Oh, I could give you and your "I like your post, dear" or "oh, sorry, I commented wrong post, luv" mates a wholeday course in hifi since it's clear that only hifi knowledge the most of you possess is gained by reading WHF and similar reviews. But I am too expensive for this kind of public. And my "soulmate"... I do not have a clue who the guy is, but one thing is clear... he is one of the few here who has a pair of well functioning ears. And I will agree with him again - Darko is the same corrupt type as any other "reviewer". You think he's some kind of expert? The guy likes to talk and has successfully convinced hifi manufacturers to send him products for free and he will promote the shi* out of them. So, yes, I agree with my "soulmate" :D You should too! And the answer to your final question, if you should steer clear of any other equipment - yes, anything coming from manufacturers that always receive flawless reviews in WHF and other similar publications. In times when nobody reads press any longer they must find another source of income. Before it was by having a couple of pages with classic store and equipment ads. But now, the whole magazine is a large advertisement. Pay the price and sure, you will get your five stars, no biggie. Take WHF 2020 winners... the results are a big joke! So, there you go, you've got some more hifi education for free.
 

matthewpiano

Well-known member
Nov 23, 2007
490
314
19,270
I'm returning to this thread as I can't leave this nonsense unanswered, particularly as it is insulting both to the membership of this forum and to the magazine that hosts it, and it does this without offering anything constructive.

@PrylarSwe and @Surly Sid, it remains the case that you have still made no positive suggestions for alternatives to the KEF LS50. Please share your self-professed 'expertise' and tell us what you think would be the best performing speakers to buy with a £1,000 budget. If you can do this, with musical reasons for your preferences, your input would be as valid as anyone elses, and may offer some members an alternative worth exploring. Perhaps you could also tell us what systems you are enjoying yourselves, so we can see what your personal ideals are.

The suggestion that you are 'too expensive for this kind of public' infers that you are looking down on the relatively affordable kit we are discussing from some sort of ivory tower. The suggestion that you somehow have superior knowledge to many people here who have plenty of experience, suggests that you would be better running your campaign elsewhere.

Thanks for the 'hi-fi education for free', but no thanks.
 
Last edited:

Friesiansam

Well-known member
Feb 3, 2015
328
206
11,270
Oh, I could give you and your "I like your post, dear" or "oh, sorry, I commented wrong post, luv"
Apologising for and correcting errors, is the sort of thing decent people do.

As for the rest of your post, your's and Surly Sid's increasingly desperate attempts to make people believe you both and, salvage some credibility, are certainly becoming good for a laugh.
 
Last edited:
Status
Not open for further replies.

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS