KEF, Parasound, Innuos, NAD | Audio Advice LIVE 2022






The KEF Blade Two Meta

The smaller of the KEF Blade series, though if only one of the two are present, I usually have to ask which is which.

Reporting by Eric Franklin Shook

As far as challenging exhibit spaces go, this one takes the cake. Located on the third floor mezzanine of the Audio Advice LIVE 2022 hotel location, in what could only be described as a former open-air breezeway from the 18th century that was co-opted and absorbed during the hotel construction and left as original as possible to lend to the classic aesthetics of the space. An artful choice for sure, but imposing when it comes to acoustics.

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The Meta Material

Sharing the same DNA as Blade One Meta, Blade Two Meta offers all the acoustic prowess and iconic design on a slightly smaller scale. Blade Two Meta features Single Apparent Source technology with four 165mm (6.5 in.) force-cancelling bass drivers and a 12th generation Uni-Q® driver array with MAT™ (Meta Material).

What’s truly amazing about the Blade series of loudspeakers is how they propagate cabinet resonances into the room. Yes, the aforementioned “force-canceling” of the bass drivers is at play in part of how they are loaded in opposing fashion, but it also goes to credit the shape of the cabinet, taking advantage of arch structure to resist flexing and decoupling of surfaces. It’s really genius stuff, and I’m glad KEF does it.

One way they demonstrate this feat of engineering is by placing an American nickel coin on its edge atop of each Blade speaker. The coin remains there throughout the audio show weekend. Undisturbed by how loud the music plays.

Challenges Matter Not

The KEF Blade Two Meta — in concert with Parasound‘s hulking amplification, and Innuos serving up the tunes — really put on a show.

Despite there being really no room boundaries to speak of, only a centuries old timber floor and ceiling, the Blade Two Meta were some of the most complete and hi-fi sounding pieces of the show. Bass rich and deep, mids and highs with due clarity and control of the space.

At first it was thought that this was going to be a static display like several others that graced the lobby floor, but when things fired up on Friday, it was easy to see why a crowd had gathered in the egress and stayed there as the KEF Blades worked their magic.

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