KEF Q3 Floorstanding Speakers

Q3

With its Ferrofluid-cooled aluminium dome neodymium tweeter derived from the Reference series unit, the coincident source 165mm (6 1/2") UNI-Q driver array creates a spacious and intricate sound image thoughout the room, and bass extention from the large front-firing port is taut, gutsy and accurately controlled to preserve the clarity of the midrange. KEF''s unique bracing system increases cabinet rigidity to minimise distortion, and the sophisticated crossovers are connected directly to the bi-wire terminals for optimum signal integrity.

User Reviews (7)

Showing 1-7 of 7  
jeffczar   AudioPhile [Jul 08, 2005]
Strength:

SOUNDSTAGE ! Midrange presentation excellent Smooth overall sound Natural non boomy bass

Weakness:

Not the last word in upper octave air but very smooth.

First let me say that these are possibly the best speakers I have heard under $1000 and one of the best speakers I have heard in many regards period. That being said I would like to address some of the issues I have read about these speakers in many places. First, I read in many places that the low end is thin. Absolutely False. The low end is deep, rich and natural without tipped up boom that seems to have infested many smaller speakers. The low end on these speakers is RIGHT. They are tight and have ample weight when the material does. Second, I have read that the overall sound of the high end is a bit dark and not detailed. Partially False. I listen to mainly Jazz and Acoustic music. On this material, the highs are silky, smooth and a bit laid back. While they are not the last word in upper octave datail, they have a nice smooth top end. On Rock music, I can see how some would say they lack some detail. I do not think these are great rock speakers. If you listen to mainly rock/pop music, I would say these are not for you. Probably a set of JBL L100's may suit you better (That's not an insult, I have owned L112's and think many JBL speakers sound very good). If you are looking for Boom/Sizzle these aren't for you either. Now the REAL strengths of this speaker. The midrange presence, and the in the room soundstage is almost beyond compare. These babies are deep and wide and convey acoustic instruments second to none. If you liked the Spendor/Harbeth LS3/5's you will LOVE these. Until now, the Harbeths were the best speaker I have ever owned. These are deeper and more natural with more body in the bass with similar midrange accuracy and maybe a shade darker at the extreme top. So I give these a BIG 2 thumbs up for overall musical presentation and awesome imaging. For twice the going price you couldn't go wrong. That being said, my system is all tube. I cannot comment on how they sound with solid state gear. Everything I just said may be untrue in an all SS setup. I use a pristine restored Heathkit AA121 stereo amp. This amp has huge iron and is about 60-80 watts per side. A very good vintage tube amp, yes I have heard better but at many times the price. Give these a serious listen or consideration if you listen to mainly Jazz/Acoustic music. Speakers previously owned are Harbeth LS3/5, NHT super zero, JBL L112. Speakers I have recently heard or compared to the KEF's NHT SB2 (boomy bass and sucked out midrange), KEF Q Compact (nice small speaker for small rooms), and my friend owns a pair of Martin Logans with Conrad Johnson electronics. Most importantly, these speakers make me want to listen to music and listen more and more. Isn't that what it's all about in the end?

Similar Products Used: Harbeth LS3/5 Kef Q Compact NHT SB2 NHT Super Zero JBL L112
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
steve1169   Audio Enthusiast [Feb 07, 2005]
Strength:

Great imanging, Good price, Great price on E-Bay. Very musical speakers.

Weakness:

Made in China, Steel basket 6.5" driver instead of cast aluminium.I know at this price level I am nit picking

Price includes shipping, New unopened boxs. I love how British speakers sound, very laid back and musical. I own Celestion DL-8 series II & B&W N802 speakers. For the price the speakers image very well and sound balanced. I have played around using a Denon AVR-2105 90wpc recever, Adcom 200wpc amp and a Krell High Current 100wpc Class A amp. I like the sound of the Q3s and love them with my Sony SA-Wa 700 Subwoofer. They sound good on each level of amp. Of course they sounded best on the Krell, but they sounded great even on the lowest priced Denon (See my review). I can't hear any difference bi-wiring the speakers but did hear a difference I bi-amping them. I would buy them again.

Similar Products Used: Celestion DL-8 seriesII, Appogee,B&W N802,JBL, and Vandersteen.
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Tony   Audio Enthusiast [Jun 17, 2003]
Strength:

Price, design, sound.

Weakness:

detail during movies

I have a pair of these rounding out my surround speakers in my system. I do at times listen to background music in my HK 320's 5 channel stereo mode which sends full range sound and power to the surround and center speakers as well as fronts. The Q-3s sound almost identical to the Q-5s i have in the fronts. The overall system sounds great for its price, but not as good as my Velodyne system when it comes to detail.

Similar Products Used: velodyne DF-661, LD-2, LD-3c Def Tech BP 10b
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
EricP   Audio Enthusiast [May 12, 2003]
Strength:

Great all around speaker, well made, sound good.

Weakness:

Like everyone said before me, the bass isn't there when listening to music. I'll be buying a sub, but I would have anyways.

Picked up these speakers last fall for 700 bucks Canadian (around 500-550 US) and couldn't be happier for what I spent. When listening to music however I find there is a slight lack of bass, but when watching a movie, in DTS(ES) it'll hold it's own. I love the look and overall I'm really happy with them. 5 stars for value due to the low price payed, and 4 overall cause they could always be better. Kef Q1 Kef Q9c Sony STR-DE875 Receiver Marantz DV 4300 Expressvu Sat Toshiba 42H82 Mit Terminator 4 cables to the speakers Ultralink interconnects

Similar Products Used: First real set of speakers.
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Dalancroft   Audio Enthusiast [Apr 16, 2003]
Strength:

-Spooky-real imaging and good soundstaging -Excellent balance -Decent, tight bass, NOT "one-note" or honky -Accurately voiced midrange -Smooth, sweet highs

Weakness:

-Limited bass extension; bassheads might want to augment with a sub or move up to Q5/Q7 -Can get congested at high volumes

I would like to take a little exception to the previous reviewer. While the Q3's are not the last word in bass extension, they are rated at -3 db @ 42 Hz and, on DVDs with significant LFE, I can hear energy down to 35 Hz. What these speakers do best is imaging and soundstaging. Instruments and voices are easy to place, almost spooky in their realism, and the soundstage extends ABOVE the speakers 2-3 feet in my listening room (perhaps due to the "pod" in which the Uni-Q driver resides). The new Uni-Q driver offers tight, taut bass in which the bass lines can be easily discerned; an accurate, lifelike midrange; and smooth, crystalline highs, all in excellent balance. Jazz, female vocals, and well-recorded symphonies and quartets are especially good; large-scale orchestral works and grinding rock, not as good (tend to get congest, especially at high volumes). Overall, a very good buy for those with WAF and/or space considerations. Associated equipment: -NAD C350 integrated amplifier -California Audio Labs Icon Mk II CD player -Silver Audio Silver Bullet 4.0 interconnects -Cardas StarQuad 14-guage speaker cable, biwired, bare terminations treated with CAIG ProGold

Similar Products Used: Paradigm Atoms, KEF Q15, RA Acoustics
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Maverick   Audio Enthusiast [Apr 04, 2003]
Strength:

Outstanding clarity in the mids and highs.

Weakness:

Lack bass.

A good friend of mine bought a set for 1000 Singapore dollars, the speakers do seems excellent value for money for the build and sound quality. This is especially so in the realism for the tom drums. But it is very lacking in bass. This could be overcome by adding a sub-woofer to support it in the lows.

Similar Products Used: Nil.
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Showing 1-7 of 7  

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