Test: Compact Speaker KEF R 100

In the small R, 100 Kef (800 Euro per pair) is the Nobel coax out of the Super box blade. The compact sounds so easy tip – deliciously alive and space exactly.

When the blade presented mid of last year KEF, the media interest was huge. The 25000-euros flagship (test in stereoplay 1/12) has been consistently trimmed on sound accuracy and sets standards for neutrality, ESS and joy of playing.

What many people don’t know: the heart of the blade, a coaxial system responsible for MIDs and highs (Kef always called uni-Q), is – slightly slimmed down – also in the R-series. There is even in the top model R 900 (test 11/11) not 4000 euro. The small R 100, which applies this test is traded at all to hit suspicious 800 euro.

The new uni-Q, here in the version with thinner beading for the operation with separate bass, is trimmed on accuracy and neutrality. The items are carefully matched in shape and material.

The larger R models are three-way systems with separate bass chassis, which relieve the Uni-Q , as the blade. At the R 100 is the coax on its own and needs to handle the full range of sound.

Therefore, a special version of the uni-Q with a wider beading, which gives a deeper reason resonance vibration system and enables the cone membrane for larger displacement uses the R 100. The two-way system mutates to the full area converter that can emit considerably deep bass at moderate levels.

Full bandwidth

To prevent strong reflections on a salient bead is the beading often jagged and it occurs less than acoustic barrier in appearance. KEF this type of suspension is called “Z-Flex”, which quite aptly describes the form.

The anxious question is, whether the sound character of the uni-Q suffers from these measures. On the one hand, additional bass work leads to more stress in the oscillation system, on the other hand the soft layout through the renunciation of a third branch with fewer components comes along, which tend to be friendly to the sound effect.

The answer from the listening room is so complex as positive. Clear has the small R 100 not the enforcement force of a R 900 or even a blade, which buckles at insanely complex and noisy sound bodies, if at all, very late.

The bass-intensive and highly dynamic “No. sanctuary here” could represent the R 100 despite the handicaps of its size considerably voluminous with Chris Jones (stockfish). Only the loudest places were allowed to extend beyond not much volume. The coax starts driving it too colorful, angry to Growl.

In fact, the border area is so surprisingly large that listeners with spaces under 25 square meters and is possible listening distances usually not will explore it. What produces the box otherwise, is high end at its finest. At civilian volumes come highly massively difficult bass runs and adult.

Pulses have done to especially small KEF. Wild clacking castanets, for example, that harsh and annoying sound on many boxes, represents the R 100 fascinating transparent and of course. As timing sensitive work only special designs, about the legendary bending wave radiators of Manger.

Despite the unique joy of playing, the heights are never edgy, which could well occur in older generations of uni-Q; recently the XQ series, this criticism was still entitled.

A spatial representation, which itself can increase the breath hard-nosed provides the R 100 on top of that. Chamber Orchestra – and not only that – be in width, depth and (!) Height shown so vividly that you involuntarily wonders whether staggering in the concert hall can succeed even better. One feels on a front row seat in the middle of your living room.

Despite their ability to reproduce even the largest body of sound room-filling, the R 100 enables a selective Imaging. Parts are staggered centimetre, even significantly increasing the ESS.

In this respect, the new R 100 is even a tad bit better than the larger R 900 – possibly a result of less complex crossover. What it might be: the small KEF is an exception converter, a type of basic services for every audiophile household.

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