KEF LS50 Meta Bookshelf Speaker Review

4.34 Mixed Usages
4.3 Dialogue & Vocal Accuracy:
4.4 Treble Accuracy:
4.3 Bass Accuracy:
4.3 Imaging & Soundstage:
4.4 Dynamic Range:
Release year: 2020 Rating: 4.6 Warranty: 5 years 1" tweeter 5.25" woofer MAT technology stereo speaker home theater usage: music

KEF LS50 Meta standmount speaker is a reliable passive speaker. It sounds balanced and has good sonic accuracy. It has a neutral sound profile and sounds good even at low volumes. The drivers are designed to improve dispersion throughout the room. It delivers musical performance with deep bass for compact spaces. The speakers sound warm and pleasant, and they can be used for long hours. However, if you want room-shaking bass, pair a KEF powered subwoofer via an amplifier.

Our Verdict

At this size, the KEF LS50 Meta speaker has good dynamic range and can produce 3-dimensional sound. It is an all rounder both in terms of aesthetics and performance. The sturdy built, advanced technologies and well-engineered drivers covers the high cost. Positioning the speakers is very easy even for newbies as the manual shows images and writes specific lengths. They sound great even at low volume levels.

PROS
  • Amazing transparency
  • Impressive highs
  • Inert cabinet
  • Expansive soundstage
  • Non-fatiguing
CONS
  • Costly
Where to buy

Specification

GENERAL:

Speaker Type Bookshelf Speaker
Number Of Channels 2.0 way speaker
Amplification Type Passive Speaker (External Amp)
Power Source AC Powered

DRIVERS

Drive Unit 2x2
Tweeter Type vented aluminum dome
Tweeter Size (inches) 1
Midrange Size (inches) N/A
Midrange Type N/A
Woofer Size (inches) 5.25
Woofer Type aluminum cone
Other

SPECS

Power Range 40-100 W
Sensitivity 85dB
Impedance 8 ohms
Frequency Range 79 Hz - 28 kHz
Crossover Frequencies 2.1kHz

CONNECTIVITY:

Speaker Level Input N/A
Speaker Wire Input: Yes
Line Level Input N/A
Digital Input (Optical) N/A
Digital Input (Coaxial) N/A
RCA Input N/A
3.5mm Stereo Analog Input N/A
Aux Input N/A
HDMI Input N/A
Bi-amp Input: N/A
USB Port N/A
Subwoofer Output N/A

WIRELESS FEATURES

Bluetooth N/A
Wi-Fi N/A
Other

CONNECTOR:

Connector Type binding posts
Compatible Connector Types bare wire, pin-connectors, spade-lugs, and banana plugs
Speaker Wire Compatibility standard speaker wire

AUDIO QUALITY ( TESTED )

Bass Accuracy: Even and tight bass that is enough for compact spaces
Dialogue & Vocal Accuracy: Loud vocals
Treble Accuracy Natural and rich highs
Imaging & Soundstage: powerful imaging and soundfield
Dynamic Range: satisfying dynamic range
Power Handling: Good power handling
Frequency Response: Wide frequency response
Transient Response: It has quick transient response.

BUILD MATERIAL

Enclosure Ported
Finish MDF
Color Carbon Black, Titanium grey, Mineral White, Royal Blue

SIZE & WEIGHT

Height (inches) 11.9
Width (inches) 7.9
Depth (inches) 11
Weight (pounds) 17.2lbs
Recommended Stand Height (inches) 25-30

CONTROL

Handheld Remote N/A
Control by app N/A
Amazon Alexa N/A
Google Assistant N/A

IN THE BOX

Accessories: 1 pair of Bookshelf speakers, Foam port plugs, rubber feet, Manual, Warranty, Registration Card
User manual: Yes
Where to buy

Details Review

Design:

Place them on KEF S2 Floor stand and tightly put on the mounting inserts. It is available in 4 different color options. Instead of having a sharp rectangular shape, the speaker has curved front panel that is made of Dough Moulding Compound. It has an MDF body that has good bracing and damping. This design will eliminate any resonance or coloration. It does not come with any grille, so you need to be careful if you have pets or children in the house.

Performance:

KEF LS50 Meta speaker has 1” tweeter and 5.25” woofer driver. Highs are very precise, rich and accurate. This is due to Metamaterial Absorption Technology. It is also known as MAT that works with the sound that comes from the tweeter. This along with 12th generation Uni-Q driver array ensure better acoustic performance. Mids are clear, detailed, and precise. With MAT, KEF expects to remove 99% distortion and improve treble smoothness by 40%.

It has a full-bodied sound that brings out minute details. The transparency is excellent and plays sound with clarity. It has a wide and powerful soundstage. Instruments and vocals are produced with good authority. Place the speaker in medium sized spaces so that the powerful soundfield and can deliver room-filling sound. The stereo separation and wide sweet spot amazed us. Low ends from 5.25” woofer is deep, smooth and has good punch.

It is powerful but not suitable for larger spaces. For that you will need an external subwoofer. Also, try upgrading to a basic 3.1 or 5.1 home theater. The speaker also utilizes a Flexible Port Design that removes turbulence and other noises resulting in clearer sound.

KEF LS50 vs LS50 Meta:

The LS50 Meta is the upgraded and newer model while the LS50 is the original one. Their specs are similar with a difference in power and Uni-Q driver. The LS50 Meta has 12th generation Uni-Q whereas the LS50 has 11th generation. Power rating of LS50 is 40-100W. All other features and specs are the same. In terms of performance, the LS50 Meta is better.

Speaker placement:

Place the KEF LS50 Meta speakers 8-20” from rear walls and from side walls, the gap should be 20-40”. If you want to place them closer to walls, use the included foam port plugs. Elevate the speakers by placing them on speaker stands or shelves. The height should be around 25-30”. Place the speakers 6-10’ apart and set the sitting area 1-1.2 times the speaker distance. Lastly toe-in the speakers

Connectivity and control:

While connecting the speakers to an external amplifier, make sure to match the color (red to red and black to black). Then connect audio sources to the amp.

Use case:

KEF LS50 Meta speakers are ideal for small to medium-sized rooms. It can handle recorded music, contents from audio sources or you can also stream from online. It can handle different music genre including jazz, rock, metal, classical, etc.

Compatible device:

Choose one from our list: Cambridge Audio CXA81, Rotel RA-1592MK2, NAD M10 V2, Rotel A11 Tribute, Marantz 7205, Yamaha WXA-50, Emotiva BasX3, etc. You can also select any other brand that matches. You can pair KEF powered subwoofer or pair other brands like LS KC62 Sub, SVS, Polk subs, etc.

Cost:

KEF LS50 Meta is an expensive speaker. The total cost will increase once you pair an amplifier.

FAQ:

Where to place the subwoofer with KEF LS50 Meta?

Place the subwoofer beside the speaker on the front wall of the room. Adjust the distance from the rear walls depending on the bass in the room. Or perform subwoofer crawl technique.

Is KEF LS50 Meta speaker good for audiophiles?

KEF LS50 Meta has excellent engineering. They are unbeatable and when paired with quality amplifier and subwoofer, the speakers shine. They are great for audiophiles.

Where to buy

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