Loudspeakers

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Ed Selley  |  Sep 15, 2021  |  0 comments
hcchighreccomendAt the top of KEF's LS50 collection, you'll find its 'meta-material' Wireless II active system. Ed Selley gives his soundbar a night off and enjoys some premium stereo

KEF's LS50 Wireless II is, as you'd probably guessed, an updated version of its original 2016-era LS50 Wireless. A self-contained active speaker system, it should be viewed more as an alternative to all-in-one devices like Naim's Mu-So 2nd Generation than something you attach to existing electronics. Which is probably for the best, as the £2,250 ticket might not leave you much spare for other kit.

Mark Craven  |  May 07, 2021  |  0 comments
hccbestbuybadgev3The fan-fave AV bundle returns with a new look, new drivers and a new Atmos toy. Mark Craven reports

Considering its position as both a hi-fi and home cinema speaker brand, and the sizable catalogue of models that it's typically offered, Monitor Audio has been rather slow to step into the Dolby Atmos arena. Now, however, it's selling an upfiring module for 3D audio lovers, and keeping the price low too.

Mark Craven  |  Dec 14, 2020  |  0 comments
hccbestbuybadgev3PMC's Twenty5i series is for those who like the finer things in life, suggests Mark Craven

PMC is a brand with professional audio heritage, something that informs the general styling of its loudspeakers. Cast an eye on its SE series or flagship Fact Fenestria and neither would look out of place in a mixing suite. The Twenty5i range tested here is about as living room as the company gets, but still comes with the promise of studio-grade performance...

Mark Craven  |  Nov 16, 2020  |  0 comments
hcchighreccomendMark Craven assembles a 5.1.2 package from the Norwegian brand's multi-talented new speaker series

Norwegian brand Arendal Sound is relatively new – it launched in 2015 – and as such its product range isn't extensive. But in adding the new 1961 Series to the existing flagship 1723 fleet (which comes in full-size and S-for-small variants), it's adding two elements that will appeal to cinema system builders – its first height model, and lower price points. The full 1961 Series (named in honour of the year the Tromøy Bridge was completed in Arendal, Norway, we're told) is nothing if not comprehensive, comprising floorstander, monitor and bookshelf models, plus a centre channel, 'TriAxial' surround speaker, and the aforementioned height option.

Steve Withers  |  Oct 20, 2020  |  0 comments
hcchighreccomendFocal elevates its Chora range of home cinema speakers with built-in Atmos drivers. Steve Withers indulges in some immersion therapy

Focal's recently launched Chora range offers plenty of home cinema options, but with the addition of the new 826-D floorstander the company has taken its performance to another level… literally.

Mark Craven  |  Oct 06, 2020  |  0 comments
hcc_recommendedKlipsch muscles in on the sub/sat market with a compact reimagining of its Reference range. Mark Craven reports

The idea behind Klipsch's Reference Theatre Pack is simple: bringing the US speaker brand's house sound, beloved by owners of its floorstanding models, to those with small rooms/budgets.

Richard Stevenson  |  Sep 02, 2020  |  0 comments
hcchighreccomendTwo-way installation speakers with integrated amplification and Meridian DSP, these powered towers make a startling impression
Steve Withers  |  Apr 17, 2020  |  0 comments
hccbestbuybadgev3Steve Withers reckons this more affordable M&K package sounds familiar. And that's a good thing

In an ideal world you'd want to experience movies with the same speakers used to craft their soundtracks. M&K Sound has been making professional studio monitors for decades, and its S150 is about as iconic as you can get. But what if you fancy a similar level of performance from a speaker that's a bit cheaper and a bit more… normal looking?

Steve Withers  |  Jan 30, 2020  |  0 comments
hcc_recommendedSteve Withers rediscovers the simple joys of well-designed speakers

British speaker brand Acoustic Energy has gained its reputation through a simple but effective approach of getting the basics right, as opposed to reinventing the wheel. This ethos worked well with its entry-level 100 Series – a range of speakers delivering quality performance at an affordable price.

Mark Craven  |  Jan 28, 2020  |  0 comments
Mark Craven takes this revamped, 5.1 sub/sat style system for a spin. Literally

Home cinema speakers come in different flavours, all with a target audience in mind. You only have to look at Cabasse's new Eole 4 system, with its diminutive satellite enclosures, slim-line subwoofer and its white finish (black is an alternative) to know it's intended for living room systems where discretion is vital.

David Vivian  |  Dec 10, 2019  |  0 comments
hccbestbuybadgev3David Vivian is smitten by the looks, build quality and sonic delivery of this premium 5.1 combo

Monitor Audio isn't a speaker maker catering chiefly to music lovers that does pretty well with home cinema all things considered. Nor is it a company packing multichannel cred that nevertheless makes a decent enough fist of hi-fi. If you can detect the slightest hint of compromise in either direction, MA reckons it hasn't done its job.

Ed Selley  |  Oct 31, 2019  |  0 comments
hccbestbuybadgev3KEF’s revamped R Series is just the ticket for a serious AV system. Ed Selley gets stuck in

Many speaker brands are in the habit of releasing new model ranges as an entirely new entity – new name, new driver configurations, even new price points – in the pursuit of 'going with the market.' At the other end of the scale, you have companies like KEF, which has had a Q Series, R Series and Reference Series for a very long time.

Steve Withers  |  Oct 30, 2019  |  0 comments
hcc_recommended150Arendal Sound, a Norwegian company established in 2016, reckons it can lure more customers by offering a slimmed down version of its debut 1723 range. Those cabinets were seriously big. And, in truth, this 'S for small' update is hardly a compact setup either. But it'd be churlish to complain...
David Vivian  |  Sep 19, 2019  |  0 comments
hccbestbuybadgev3Does this 5.1 system have the muscle to back up its good looks? asks David Vivian

Focal's speaker lineup goes all the way from bijou to blimey, affordable to 'if you have to ask'. Which is useful when it comes to putting together a 5.1 package that's a few steps above entry-level but, at the same time, isn't going to break the bank, looks fabulous and has the size and wherewithal to fill a big room with movie mayhem – and possess the lightness of touch to play music with grace and finesse, too.

Steve Withers  |  Sep 02, 2019  |  0 comments
We go to outer space – and then to war – with Klipsch's cinematic six-pack...

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