Speaker Spotlight: What Sets KEF Speakers Apart
The UK Manufacturer That’s Been Innovating Since ‘61
We’re proud to have some of the world’s best high-end speakers on display here at HiFi Buys in Atlanta, GA. So let’s talk about some of them!
When you visit our storefront, you’re free to see and listen to KEF speakers, which are recognizable for their sleek, smooth cabinets. But what really sets KEF apart is the concentric drivers inside each speaker.
Here’s why concentric drivers make such a difference to audio performance—and how it ensures every spot in the room offers a great listening experience.
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The KEF Story
KEF gets its name from Kent Engineering & Foundry, an agricultural equipment manufacturing firm in Kent, England. KEF’s founders, Raymond Cooke and Robert Pearch, used the space to start their loudspeaker engineering company in 1961 and named KEF after it.
In 1962, KEF built one of the first truly high-performance bookshelf speakers, the B139. A decade later, KEF became the first audio manufacturer to use computers in loudspeaker design. And in 1988, they patented the world’s first concentric speaker driver Uni-Q, which allows people sitting in different locations in a room to experience the same sound quality. KEF has refined its Uni-Q driver with newer, updated versions, and today is still its greatest asset.
What Is a Concentric Driver?
KEF is known for its Uni-Q concentric drivers. But what does that mean? In general, it’s a driver that combines the bass and midrange drivers into one unit. The tweeter is mounted atop the cone, directly above the bass driver pole where normally a dust cap sits.
The combined driver matches the off-axis characteristics of each driver, which makes the sound more balanced across frequency ranges. The sound character will be more consistent throughout the listening room and less influenced by room acoustics. So no matter where you’re sitting, KEF drivers deliver balanced, high-quality sound to your ear.
The 12th-Generation Uni-Q Driver
Today, KEF’s Uni-Q concentric drivers are in their 12th generation with additional Metamaterial Absorption Technology for even superior acoustics. The initial concept behind Uni-Q was that the speakers would sound great from anywhere in the room, and it’s just as true now as it was in 1988.
The 12th-generation Uni-Q driver involves a 1-inch aluminum dome tweeter at the center of a 5-inch aluminum midrange driver to produce a more lifelike and transparent sound. KEF’s Blade and Reference speakers are still hand-assembled in England, and every pair is measured to guarantee the speakers match within 0.5 dB.
Hear KEF for Yourself
If you’re an audio enthusiast or simply audio-curious, come hear the magic of KEF’s concentric drivers in person. HiFi Buys has KEF speakers on the floor ready to play. If you have any questions about home theaters, speaker systems, and more, contact us here!