KEF Reference 207/2 Stereo Speakers

the listThe Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupé, a two-door convertible, is 181/2 feet long. Its mighty V-12 engine propels the massive 5,776-pound vehicle from 0 to 60 mph in just 5.7 seconds. Opening the suicide doors, you are greeted by an opulent world of chrome and leather. The iconic Spirit of Ecstasy rises automatically from inside the radiator grille when you start the engine. A solid-gold Spirit is also available. At $412,000, the Phantom Coupé is certainly one of the world's finest motor cars.

After your drive, you'll no doubt want to relax to music played over your Model 207/2 loudspeakers - KEF's newest flagship speaker in its flagship Reference line. Designed to provide the highest visual and aural experience KEF can deliver, the 207/2 is as aerodynamic as a rocket.

Each floor-standing cabinet houses five drivers. Starting at the bottom, two 10-inch woofers are independently placed in 70-liter bass-reflex enclosures. Their response is rated down to 26 Hz (at -6 dB) - lower than that of many subwoofers in home theaters. Placed above the woofers is another 10-inch driver, this one dedicated to the midbass range, and each tower is topped by a teardrop module that holds one of KEF's signature Uni-Q driver arrays. The outer 61/2-inch cone reproduces midrange frequencies, and the coincidentally mounted 1-inch elliptical dome tweeter at the cone's hub reproduces highs to a claimed 60 kHz. The midrange driver has a flattened cone profile, so it serves as a waveguide for the tweeter. The crossover divides the speaker's response at 120, 350, and 2,300 Hz.

It's not an exaggeration to say that, at a cost of $10,000 each, the 207/2 embodies the culmination of KEF's 46 years of engineering experience, and it affords a perfect opportunity to focus on some serious 2-channel music listening.

Setup Find that DVD transfer of the birth of your first child and erase it, because you'll need the space to record the christening of your 207/2s. They reveal themselves regally from inside massive cartons. With proper ceremony, open the beautiful wooden box that accompanies each 207/2 pair; it contains a set of beautiful chrome-plated spikes, accessories, and tools.

I carefully positioned the grand 145-pound cabinets in my room's sacred places. Each cabinet has a discreet, built-in bubble level to make sure it stands straight. There are three pairs of binding posts, one each for low, mid, and high frequencies. I tri-wired the speakers with 500 watts per side. Later, for movies, I switched to biamping with 200 watts and 500 watts per side. Some basic EQ circuitry allows a bit of control of low- and high-frequency levels: bass at -2 dB or flat, treble at -1.5, -0.75, flat, or +0.75 dB. These compensate for proximity to walls and for room absorption.