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Question KEF R300 fronts and KEF Q300 rear or something else?

Discussion in 'What Speakers Should I Buy?' started by Taliseth, Sep 25, 2015.

  1. Taliseth

    Taliseth
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    So, my Sonos Play 5 died recently and thus I now have permission from the wife to look for a new speaker package, yay!:clap:

    Would the pack listed below be a decent set up or should I not mix KEF Q and R series like this, and is it worth the money spend on it?

    I was thinking of:
    • KEF R300 Rosewood (£799) front LR
    • KEF Q300 Rosewood (£329) as rear (vs Q100 costs £399)
    • KEF R200C Rosewood (£519) centre
    • KEF Q400B (£499) Sub woofer (Black seems pretty much the only colour)
    I'm planning to power this with a Denon AVR X2200, or similar. I've been told a Yamaha will work very well with the Uni-Q drivers of KEF.

    I'm planning to listen to this set up very soon, but I'd value some extra insight, especially since there's not much in the shape of reviews for the Kef R series as a surround setup.
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2015
  2. hifix

    hifix
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    I'd rather have the R100 at the back over the Q300. The difference in sound quality between R Series and Q Series is too big to ignore, in my opinion.

    Also, I'd normally be looking at receivers in the £1,000-2,000 area to get more out of the R Series. £500 receivers will be better suited to the Q Series.
     
  3. hifix

    hifix
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  4. Taliseth

    Taliseth
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    I'm afraid that since the R100's are rear ported I can't put them as close to the wall as I want.
    There's a wall about 20 cm's behind the couch, the wall is then about 35 cm behind my listening position (I'm willing to move the couch more forward but not to much. Since the port is at the rear I assume I can't put them as close to the wall as I can with the Q300's. Hence I chose the Q300s, how close to the wall could I put those R100s, because I did read those reviews (no reviews about the R300 it seems).

    I understand a 1000-2000 pound receiver would be better, however it's either an more expensive receiver or getting some nice speakers with the current discount and the option to upgrade the AVR instead of selling and upgrading 5 speakers and a sub in the future.

    I was planning a gradual upgrade by first buying 2 R300 and then slowly add the other speakers Kef R rosewoods for surround, however this 20% discount deal on the discontinued (according to a shop) rosewood makes it more enticing to buy the speakers first.

    So you would suggest getting:
    • R300 front
    • R200C centre
    • R100 rear (£479)
    I will forget about the sub woofer for a while as anything these speakers can produce should be better than the Sonos play 5, especially if I have to go for a 1000-2000 receiver.
    What brand of receiver would be good to look at?
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2015
  5. hifix

    hifix
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    I used to have R300s across the front left/centre/right, and used the supplied bungs (with their centres removed) to calm the bass down a little. I had them within 6-7" from the front, solid wall, and didn't have any major issues with boom. I don't know whether it is the way the ports have been designed (possibly cleaner output, less turbulent airflow), but a few of my customers have also reported that they don't have issues with boom,made spite them expecting to.

    The R Series does dip in impedance, so will place certain demands on the receiver. Better receivers can deal with this, lesser ones not so, which is why I make the recommendations I do. By all means go with the cheaper receiver if it is a stop gap, as long as you are willing to put up with the speakers not sounding their best until you do. When an AV receiver isn't doing its job properly with a particular set of speakers, you usually end up with a bland, lacklustre sound lacks punch. The R Series is an extremely capable range of speakers both for music and movies, and as an example, we currently have an R300AV (R300/R600/R800) with a Classe Sigma AV pre/power (£9000) running in our demo room, and they're sounding stunning, and I haven't really tweaked the system yet to get the best from it, it was just a quick, basic setup. So they still convey the benefit of an extremely high quality £4K plus pre/processor (that doesn't shame itself, or draw any attention to itself, in a £40k hi-fi system). Swap that budget for the speakers and amplification round and you won't have the same quality because the quality of processing won't be there.

    Are you buying rosewood because it is your preferred choice? Or just because of the discount?

    For one box receivers, I prefer Yamaha myself, but if you have an awkward room, have a look at the Anthems that have one of the best EQ systems. But like two channel hi-fi amplifiers, they have their own character, so getting a listen to them is highly recommended, even if you just have a two channel demo with a few AV receivers and a pair of R300s.

    I'm not using a subwoofer at the moment while I am between speaker packages, and I'm enjoying films no less than when I had a subwoofer, so you will be fine without a sub for a little while.
     
  6. Taliseth

    Taliseth
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    Well I was initially looking for walnut, but when I saw the R300 rosewoods in store (didn't see the price tag) they looked rather nice on a white surface, and they looked nicer than the Q300. when I went home I found out that 1 store had them on discount since they would be discontinued.
    I admit the 20% is a nice incentive though.

    For the front speakers 6-7" (~15 cm) from the wall is relatively easy to do... I'm not so sure I could manage that near my couch.
    The living room is a bit odd shaped but should be workable.
    [​IMG]

    Receiver wise I wouldn't have a clue what to buy, cause the information people give seem to be contradicting, like a denon X3000 being enough to power the R300 while you say something more powerfull is needed.

    From your reply it would suggest I'd be more than happy with the Bass output these speakers will give me without feeling I should rush to the store and buy a sub woofer.

    You now got me thinking whether I should just buy the R300 and R200C (did you use a R300 as centre?) and then get one of the more expensive Receivers, I'm not particularly bothered about it being a one box solution or more really. I would assume a one box solution is more expensive than a "2-box" solution, at least that was the case with my washing machine ;) Which Yamaha would you recommend, and which others (No denon?)?
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2015
  7. PSM1

    PSM1
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    One box solutions on the whole are cheaper than 2 boxes (processor and power amp). The 2 box option is, again in general, the better option since you separate the processing and the amplification. That said there are many great one box AVRs so you should be fine which ever option you take.
    On the sub front, I would look at a BK Electronics sub as they are much better value for money.
    On the rear speakers, I would not worry about placement too much since the rears do not take much bass anyway so less likely to cause sound issues. When you get a sub you will also be setting all the speakers to small and crossing them over at around 80Hz or so hence again bass issues should be minismised.
     
  8. Taliseth

    Taliseth
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    So from what I read here and from what I read on the internet about sensitivity of the speakers, I need at least 25 watt per channel. So I assume that an Anthem X310 rated at 80 Watt per channel is more than sufficient, but is it worth it If I just buy the the front pair and a centre channel (colour matching) and get R100 rears + subwoofer later, or can I get away with a lower end Receiver?
     
  9. PSM1

    PSM1
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    The Anthem will have more than enough power for the Kefs. A lower end receiver could be used with them but to get the best from them you really need to be looking at good amplification. Seems pointless spending money on good speakers to then hold them back by buying a cheaper AVR. The Anthem is at a consistent quality to the Kef speakers so something like that or another make of similar level would be what I would go for.
     
  10. Taliseth

    Taliseth
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    True it would be wasteful, and troublesome to sell on the receiver some where down the line to buy the upgrade.

    What other brands are good to look out for next to anthem, and when do Anthem usually refresh their receiver line up?
     
  11. PSM1

    PSM1
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    I think Anthem have just announced their new releases (their is a thread in the AVR section on Anthem receivers). Anthem have one of the best room correction systems around at the moment but a similar priced Yamaha/Denon will have a similar sound quality albeit without such good room correction which may or may not have an impact depending on what issues you have or do not have in your room.
     
  12. Taliseth

    Taliseth
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    The room looks like the picture I put up in post #6 the floor is the size of the room in total.
    So If they are really that good with room correction, then I'd benefit from that Anthem X310.

    My Main concern is that while they are so good with Room correction what am I trading in to obtain that?
     
  13. PSM1

    PSM1
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    To be fair the Anthem range seem to have good quality amps as well. The thing you are trading is that they do not have all the latest bells and whistles like Atmos. So where it counts in terms of quality they score well but do not score so well on the frilly bits.
     

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