Don't look now but Klipsch has been getting some love

Discussion in 'Home Theater and Stereo' started by CJ, May 9, 2019.

  1. CJ

    CJ Bronze Member Admin Top Poster

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    When you browse various AV forums, you start to absorb certain things by osmosis... what OLED everyone is buying, what pet speaker brands are out there, etc. Klipsch is so common on the r/hometheater subreddit that they have their own joking, mocking flair of "F'ing Klipsch Again".

    But, here's the thing. The new Klipsch Reference Premier Line has been getting some legit love. A few years back Klipsch made the (IMO) stupid decision to take their lower end "Best Buy" line (I forget the name) and renamed it Reference. Well, they already had a Reference line so they renamed that Reference Premier. :rollseyes: When the new RP line rolled out they made some changes. The horns became vertically and horizontally symmetrical unlike past models that had more like a 60x80 degree horn. They changed the horn material from plastic to a presumably more damped molded silicon material. They also changed the throat geometry pretty significantly. The net effect is the horn is more like what existed on the old flagship RF-7 line (arguably better as the 7s still suffered from horn resonance) which always had a unique design compared the the rest of the line. Throw in evolutionary updated drivers and you have a decent bit of a changed speaker design. They also offer several models in a piano black finish.

    As I alluded to, I only became aware of all of this because I kept seeing positive comments pop up everywhere. A lot of commentary about how these don't sound like the old Klipsch, much more neutral, not bright at all, etc. They seem to be enjoying 15 minutes of fame with this new line.

    Klipsch Reference Premiere RP-600M loudspeaker
     
  2. pillatier

    pillatier Well-Known Member

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    Klipsch always have/had name recognition among semi-audiophile and audiophile community with "horn-ey" audio taste. I was one of them until I heard the Maggies. Looks like they realized that the mass market is not them and they are on their way back with improved designs taking advantage of better materials. Good for them.
     
  3. CJ

    CJ Bronze Member Admin Top Poster

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    I think they're firmly mass market still. Like I alluded to, they are easily the most popular brand on Reddit and its not even close. Out of a hundred setup pictures its probably 50 Klipsch, 20 KEF LS50, and the remainder all other brands. Those bookshelves in the Stereophile review are under $600 a PAIR.

    But I agree that its nice that they are employing measurements and technology to improve their sound at the price point they play in.
     
  4. DYohn

    DYohn Bronze Member Donor Top Poster

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    Audiovox has done a great job turning Klipsch around.
     
  5. Jay Brown

    Jay Brown Well-Known Member Donor Top Poster

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    My system consists of the Reference Premier line from 2015. I can only go by some auditions of higher-end models from the likes of Martin Logan and B&W systems, plus what I currently had installed which were Infinity Primus Speakers, but when I got the RP260s Mains, I heard a night and day difference. Eventually I purchased the RP440 Center Speaker, and two RP 160 Surround Speakers (Shelf Speakers). My two surround-back speakers are Klipsch RB-10s.

    It was enough for me to get back into listening to Music from a two-channel perspective.
     
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  6. Denton

    Denton Bronze Member Donor Top Poster

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    That is a statement I never thought I'd hear. :astonished:
     
  7. CJ

    CJ Bronze Member Admin Top Poster

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    Same. They're really leaning into their Heritage designs too. I saw the La Scalas locally recently and they are freaking gorgeous but christ are the expensive for the measurables you're getting. You are paying a lot for a statement piece and cabinetry.
     
  8. CJ

    CJ Bronze Member Admin Top Poster

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    I enjoyed my previous Klipsch speakers which had the plastic horn and plastic front baffle trim. The GETs were a definite upgrade (albeit at a massive price premium). The Klipsh worked really well for home theater. Frankly, it would interesting if Klipsch release just a slightly higher end line. E.g. double the price of the RP line, $1000-$1500 bookshelf up to $5k for a flagship tower.
     
  9. DYohn

    DYohn Bronze Member Donor Top Poster

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    I know. But Klipsch was headed for bankruptcy and dissolution when Voxx stepped up. They invested a metric ship load of dollars into them to bring them back.

    I still think if I ever owned anything from Klipsch it would be labeled Jamo.
     
  10. Denton

    Denton Bronze Member Donor Top Poster

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    And I may still buy a pair of Heresy classics.
     
  11. CJ

    CJ Bronze Member Admin Top Poster

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    Jamo is really a ghost brand now. Remember that link I shared several weeks back about Infinity's pathetic lineup? Jamo isn't far off. They have a few more models but they seem to be oddly lifestyle oriented.
     
  12. CJ

    CJ Bronze Member Admin Top Poster

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    For the record, Klipsch is how you build a mainstream accessible speaker line. Ignoring the Heritage and THX lines as a specialty product, they have the Reference Line and the Reference Premier line. The Reference line consists of 3 regular towers and an atmos tower, 3 bookshelf models, 2 center channels, and 1 surround. The RP line consists of 3 towers, 2 atmos towers, 3 bookshelf models, 3 center channels, and 3 surrounds. They offer a number of subwoofers as well. Critically they don't just throw a pair of rear ported bookshelfs out as their surround option, which has been a massive source of frustration to me over the years for other brands. The speakers are widely available in stores and online and when buying full packages through retailers, discounts are easily available without haggling much. They may not be viewed by some as true hi-fi but its no wonder at all why they are so massively popular.
     
  13. DYohn

    DYohn Bronze Member Donor Top Poster

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    I would not turn down a set of Jamo C97s.
     
  14. CJ

    CJ Bronze Member Admin Top Poster

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    Are they even distributed in the US?
     
  15. Chris Slade

    Chris Slade Well-Known Member Top Poster

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    Glad to hear they may be improving, I hated the plastic horned ones you are referring too, so friggin bright and harsh, I would rather turn a lot of music off than listen to it on Klipsch. I used to have a load of Paradigm Reference stuff (the first version). In the end I found those too bright as well and sold it all. Happy with the KEF speakers, but I think I could be happy with a lot of decent speakers these days.
     
  16. DYohn

    DYohn Bronze Member Donor Top Poster

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    I heard them in a shop in N. California so yes.
     
  17. CJ

    CJ Bronze Member Admin Top Poster

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    I probably could too for stereo in a smaller room size and not to turn this thread into another mono topic screed but so many speaker manufacturers make really half assed surround and centers if they bother at all. That makes building a decent multi use system very difficult.
     
  18. Chris Slade

    Chris Slade Well-Known Member Top Poster

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    Agreed, on the surrounds. I only have a stereo pair for listening. My home theater is a Yamaha sound bar with bass module and I am content with it.
     
  19. Ken McDaniel

    Ken McDaniel Well-Known Member

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    I want a pair of Heresey III’s.
     
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  20. pillatier

    pillatier Well-Known Member

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    Since horns are generally highly efficient one could get a lot of dB with receivers with smaller amplifiers back in the 1970 and 1980s. That made they quite popular. I'd love to hear the LaScala with their new horns and drivers probably would sound a lot smoother than the originals with "honky-horn-ey" sound.
     

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