Are the KEF Blade/Blade 2 Metas a Significant Upgrade from Blade?

I’ve enjoyed my KEF Blade 2 for over 5 years. Just wondering if anyone has compared the Blade/2 Metas to the original and how significant an upgrade in sound observed. With 65 yo ears improving on excellent is not always a sure thing. Thanks so much!


Have you even tried phoning KEF USA to see if any Dealers have even received a pair?  My understanding is that no-one has them right now.

Thanks; you may be correct. I’ve been reading some owner reviews of Blade Meta on the KEF Owners Group on Facebook, but most are from Europe. I’ll try giving KEF USA a call. 

I was on the triumph rat forum and on a thread titled audiophiles ahoy a member posted being at a kef demo where they compared the blade to the blade  meta and he said the difference in sound didn’t live up to the hype. I think that could be said for most of the products we pine for. I often wonder if new is really better or just different? ‘Coarse I have a vested interest 

Here’s a comment from Hong Kong on the Blade One Meta, making some comparisons to the original Blade One: "What a surprise!!! KEF’s previous Blades are not my cup of tea. I personally think that they are a bit clinical and uninvolving. This pair of Blade One Meta is a totally diff story. They perform excellently on all hifi aspects : dynamics, freq extensions, density, soundstage ...etc, and most important of all, they are exceedingly musical!

Also here’s a very favorable new review of the Blade One Meta from Hi-Fi News which details many of the changes made from the previous version:

I own the older version of Kef Blade twos . The dealer I bought them from has a pair of new Kef Blade twos metas . My wife and I heard them after he had them for about 9 days or so .  He had a little over 200 hours on them .  They sounded good but not as good as I thought they would . We went back about 2 1/2 weeks later . He had played music on them non-stop . They sounded so much better , it was such a startling difference.  The Blade two metas do need a lot of run in time to sound at their best .  They are overall better sounding , bigger soundstage , better depth, clarity or transparency is improved .  If you read up on them they changed the UniQ driver 12 different ways , they changed 9 parts in the crossover .  I do remember when I first got my Kef Blade twos it took about 400 hours for them to sound their best !  Looks like you need that much if not more time to get Metas to shine .  Not all speakers are like this obviously.  But to my wife and my ears the Blade two metas are noticeably better . This was our experience!

@jrn Thanks to you and your wife. Very useful info for me.

Can you tell me what amps the dealer was using? I think I am going to go with the CODA #16 amp for the Blade 2 Meta. I am also very intrigued by the upcoming KRELL KSA 400i amp, but that 25-inch depth of that amp may make it incompatible with the wife.

I have the KRELL 175XD upon which the upcoming KSA 400i is derived from.


yyzsantabarbara  Stereo dealer was using Naim 500 series amp and preamp and a Naim streamer to play Kef Blade twos metas ! 

@steve59 I can save up for that crazy KRELL since I have a KRELL Duo 175XD available for the short term for the Blade 2. I tested this amp with my prior harder to drive Thiel CS3.7 and it was excellent. 

I would normally never consider such an amp expenditure since there are many other great choices at much lower cost. However, the KRELL 175XD is pretty fantastic and so I will be giving the KSA 400i a good look. The biggest drawback for me is the 25-iinch depth of the casework. I think that is a deal breaker with the wife.

I do think sanity will prevail and I will most likely buy the CODA #16 for the Blades and return the KRELL 175XD to my office system.

@jn Thanks.I heard those amps with maybe Wilson. It was a dealer system that had 4 subs stacked on top of each other. Rather nuts.

Thank you all for your most helpful comments! 
I am thoroughly enjoying my original KEF Blade 2s driven by my Coda 16.0. Can’t really justify spending the additional funds on the new Metas or the time in selling my like new originals. My 66 yo hearing, which has seen/heard better days, may or may not fully appreciate the upgrade. Still interested though!

@audiobrian What are you using along with the CODA#16? That is really a great amp. I have the CODA 07x preamp too, but I would use my Benchmark LA4 preamp with any future CODA #16. I loved the LA4 preamp + CODA #8 (now sold).

Hi yyzsantabarbara:

I have been using VAC preamplifiers for 20 years and my Signature IIa mates  beautifully with the Coda 16.0, making a great amplifier even better! I truly have no interest in trying other preamplifiers as all my VACs have mated great with SS and tube amplifiers. Highly recommend any and all models from the Renaissance V on up. All the best!

The following mono amp was one that I wanted to demo last week.

Michi M8 Monoblock Power Amplifier - The Music Room (

The Los Angeles dealer I was close by to only had the integrated amp and not the monos. The integrated amp had a Class AB sound to it and was very good. The CODA #16 and KRELL 175XD are (mostly) Class A and sound smoother. However, I am intrigued by the idea of using really massive power on the Blades.

The Mitchi monos are likely similar sounding to the Hegel H30 mono with the Mitchi 1/2 the price. I have heard the H30 with Blade 1 in an excellent room. It was rather exciting though not the most refined sound, which sometimes is not a bad thing.


I’m afraid I haven’t heard the Michi amplifiers live but I’ve heard and read many accolades. I will say that I’ve found the Coda 16 to be a very special match for my Blade 2s, refined, musical, authoritative, with as much power as my Blades will ever desire in my room. All the best!

Well, that Rotel Michi mono amp must be quite an impressive design and engineering effort. While its power consumption is rated at 1,200 watts it somehow manages to output 1,800 watts into 4 ohms. A Class A/B amp cannot output more power than it consumes so I suspect its ratings are somewhat "optimistic".

... the measured output power at clipping was 1322W @ 8Ω and 2250W @ 4Ω.
They also made instantaneous peak power measurements which resulted in outputs of 1640W @ 8Ω, 3130W @ 4Ω, 1790W @ 2Ω, 960W @ 1Ω.

These are slightly lower than the specified powers, but it isn't possible to hold the wall voltage constant during the tests. Rotel warns in the M8's manual that 4 ohms is the recommended minimum load impedance. I did think about examining how much power was available into 2 ohms once I had finished the testing, but when I reexamined how much power could be delivered into 4 ohms before doing so, I tripped the circuit breaker. Hint taken.



Idk, I would be more interested in the Michi if the numbers were flipped around. give me 960 into 8 0hms and 1640 into 2 with 3130 into 1. That would get me interested. The H590 is only 300 into 8 ohms but over 2000 into 1 ohm and some of these speakers have nasty xovers.

I noticed in a very recent Stereophile review of Blade 2 Meta that the reviewer did not address a sonic comparison with the original Blade 2, which won component of the year 2015. Curious, as this would be of significant interest. Do you think this omission might have been a favor to the manufacturer, rather than saying Blade 2 Meta is a mildly improved version?


I just read the review in Stereophile.  He concluded that it was the best speaker he had heard in his room.  I also wondered about comparison to the original, but he clearly hadn’t heard the original Blade 2. So, I don’t think it was a favor to KEF.

I haven’t heard the new version yet, but have heard the original Blade and Blade 2 and  I own the Reference 3s.  The original Blade 2 was/is very, very good. Will there be an improvement?

KEF appears to be one of the few companies that actually back up their efforts and claims with published research -they have engineering resources that most do not. Of course, that doesn’t mean that they always produce a better product than others, but you can look online to see what KEF accomplished in the Blade 2 Meta vs. the original. It’s fully discussed and supported with published data. Given the already very high performance bar, any improvement is notable. Regardless, I would need to hear them before drawing any conclusions.

I don’t have room for the Blade 2.  But, I have a couple of systems and am quite interested in the Reference 1 Meta for a smaller room and am hoping to audition it soon.


Hi mgrif104:

Thank you for your response! I know that KEF is one of the finest loudspeaker companies ever and supports its work with exhaustive documentation. I own the Blade 2 and love them. I was just hoping for a word or two about the sonic improvements. (I know of the technical improvements). Thanks again!!

I decided to upgrade my 2012 LS50 with a new LS50 META. I recently found my LS50 lacking after I got my RAAL VM-1a headphone amp paired with the SR1a headphones. The descriptions of the Meta sound was what made me make the switch. My SR1 has more clarity and transparency over the LS50. The Meta is supposed to be improved in those areas, so that will be great if true. It is on order now.

The Blade Meta should also have similar improvements (+ more) compared to the LS50. I decided to be an all-KEF 2-channel household with the LS50 Meta, KC62, and the Blade 2 Meta in the near future.


I just read the Stereophile review.

Now I know hi-brow music is what most reviewers use to evaluate audio equipment. But I honestly could not relate to the music that Kal used.

Can't he find some Rock Music? I mean with only 2-6" woofers and such a low sensitivity and impedance it would have been interesting how they performed. Especially given that they are $29,000.


All 4 woofers are indeed active. Like I said, not comparing the Metas to the loudspeaker of the year 2015 (Blade 2) was a significant oversight and would have been a logical comparison and valuable to many.

Well thanks for that clarification. It sure sounded like the reviewer claimed there was only 2 active woofers.


What are you guys referring to as passive and active woofers? I am assuming active meaning that there is a built-in amp to drive them. In the case, of the Blades there is no internal amp to drive the woofers, so passive.

In the case of the Baby Blades (LS60) the 4 woofers are active with a built-in Class D amp to drive the woofers.

Sorry for the term active on the Blades. I was informing that the Blade has no passive radiators, powered by internal air pressure only. All 4 are indeed woofers powered by the audio signal/internal crossover. 

My opinion of passive is that they are being used as ports and are not connected up to the speaker terminals. But I guess with these speakers they are all connected.


KR reviewed the blade 2 meta's . I don't understand what he is trying to say in this review. He comments that he never missed surround sound while listening to the blade 2 meta? Was that line for his multi channel followers, IDK the comparison at the end saying sometimes he would wake in the morning and not be able to hear which pair of speakers was left connected to be followed by saying he misses the blades now that they're gone make no sense? If his hearing has deteriorated to the point he can't tell 2 different brands apart maybe he's not qualified to be giving listening reviews anymore? 

Strange review in general, especially as you note his comparisons. As mentioned before, not comparing the Metas to Loudspeaker of the Year 2015, the original Blade 2, is a glaring omission.


Any of you Blades owners use 2 stereo amps with Blades. That is 1 amp on the L and R high frequency speaker connection and a second stereo amp for the L and R woofers.

I have an amp that I really like, the KRELL 175XD, but I want to have more power  for the Blades (when I get it) than that amp delivers. I was wondering if getting a KRELL 300XD just for the woofers would be similar to getting a very powerful amp that can double from 8-4-2 Ohm. 

Getting a second KRELL amp would be cheaper than the other 'super amp' options I was considering.



It seems the input sensitivity and the output impedance of the 175XD and the 300XD do not match. So my only option to bi-amp would be a second 175XD. 

????????????? I just looked up the specs on the 175XD and the 300XD and the gain is exactly the same....26.2db. They will play together perfectly. And the output impedance is so low in both of them that it won’t have any effect on gain or frequency response as well. You are good to go....unless there is some other issue.

Input sensitivity means how much input voltage gives full power from the amp.....since the 300 can put out more power then you need more voltage to get ALL of its power.........What is important is the actual GAIN of the amps.....and they are the biamping with them is perfectly fine.

Well I read the part about input sensitivity and output impedance on the internet. I thought everything on the net was true.

Bi-Wiring and Bi-Amping Explained - How To Improve Your Audio Setup | Audio Advice


Your post is encouraging I also asked KRELL today the same question. My CODA 07x preamp also has dual XLR outputs so I can easily send 2 stereo amps the same signal.


If two amps have the same power rating......then the "sensitivity" would matter and it would imply a different gain structure.  The thing that matters is gain.....that is what will determine matching.....and you have it.  And the output impedance will only affect frequency response if it is really high....both amps are very, very low.....7 and 15 even into 2 ohms there will be NO loss whatsoever.

it is also good that both amps have a high input impedance (200K).....then two of them in parallel is 100K.....still plenty high.....and easy for the preamp to drive.

Only what I write on the internet is true.....he he....I am NEVER WRONG......except when I am....

with my R105/3 even with a 93.5 db sensitivity I still horizontal bi-amped them with a krell kav 300il on top and a B&K 4420 driving the bass. The Blades are a much easier load and the quality of the uniq is miles ahead. IDK how big a room you're trying to pressurize but the Hegel H590 is powerful enough to drive the blades full range to +100 levels in my 17x27x7' basement listening room and with full, hard hitting bass I find I don't need to turn the dial quite so high.

I personally would never be interested in a speaker with such low sensitiviy and has tons of parts in the crossover. The crossover parts and the binding posts and wiring are very, very good in the Kef Meta......but pale against parts you could use if you are going all out. Also the wires from the crossover are not wired to the voice coil wires on the drivers. There are ton of other speakers that I woulld choose over the Kef and/also DIY speakers you could make real simply that would better the Kef.

For instance....check out the NSMT 100 speaker......for $13K you get powered built in sub.....NO....I mean NO crossover on the bass/midrange.......and just a single cap on the tweeter....with fully time and PHASE aligned design. The top end is something ike 92db effeciency so you can use lower powered amps. Of course, I would remove the binding posts and use a clamping system using plastic hardware, use better wire, hardwire the midrange to its voice coil wire, add bybee clarifier to the back of the midrange....add my Music Purifiers and Ground Enhancers......and be in heaven. NSMT is not on the cover of Stereophile, so is little known.......but check out the few reviews there are.....pretty much all raves. I bet these would be much better than the Kef......and with my simple mods would be mindblowing. You could also get some full range drivers and blow your mind as can augment full range drivers on the bottom with active bass and add super tweeter.......Lii Audio drivers from China are incredible for the money....more serious money can get you Cube drivers or Voxative drivers, etc.   Kef....nah....too dang many parts in the thing. If I had one I would remove the entire xover boards and completely rebuild them using state of the art parts, etc.....then the thing would sound like OMG.......but stock.....just another very good speaker.

For me the top of the speaker food chain is the KEF Blade. Everything else is behind them. Now not everyone has the same ears or listening objective as me, but when I heard the Blade 10 years ago I said this is the one to get.

I have heard a lot of speakers in the past decade. Though never had the room to put a Blade until now.

My friend had the older Blade 2 speakers and I heard them at his house.....very, very good speakers......Well, he got brand new custom Apogee Duetta speakers in and then I made him a custom xover for them (the speakers took a year to have made in England and cost around $15K and the crossover, etc cost him another few less than $20K total). When I went over to his house to install the upgraded xover (by the way, the xover that came with the speaker was already a custom tweaky thing) I first heard the stock xover and about was so good.....then we installed the new xover and OMG times infinity........this makes his old Blade speakers sound broken .....transparency beyond the beyond....since then he has tweaked the xover more, put the xover on better feet and done a million other things to his system including he is on full inverter can see pics of part of his stereo on my site. Yes, the Apogees are power hungry......something I don’t like.....He is using Parasound JC1+ amps........his older 400 watts into 4 ohm amps would not cut it with the Apogees......He can now play as loud as he wants. He listens to all kinds of music......has digital as well as analog (including field coil cartridge). Blades are a great box speaker......but like I said.....can be made to sound much more transparent if you made your own external xover, added bybee stuff and my tweaks, hardwired to the voice coils, etc....but, no one reading this will ever do I am just talking to myself......I love myself....Nice talk Ric. Thanks for sharing.........he he.

No doubt, anyone buying a pair of new Blade 2 Metas will be very happy......Me, I like to be blissed out of my mind.......there is always more. I could make my own speaker for a few thousand that would be way better than a Kef.......but few have these skills or knowledge or the is very simple......I am going to start a page on my website that will show you how to make your own speakers (at different price points).....that are amazing......this will be fun. I will share the link when done......a couple of months from now.

You are right of coarse, nobody is going to believe you're smarter than generations of engineers with access to measuring equipment and tools most mortals can only dream about. I respect the diy'r and the  community, but coming on and taking shots at current media favorites, and science driven companies isn't the most credible, sounds more like trolling tbh. Kef is making the blades to order so there's going to be a limited number of discounted pair available meaning for me the blades in my listening room are staying with no upgrade to meta in my future.

I took my second stop on the KEF train with the KEF LS50 Meta that arrived today. I spent the past week listening very intently to the old LS50 from 2012 because I replaced the driver. I think my son poked at one. Anyways, the driver replacement was easy and the old LS50 were sounding as they should. I am sending the old LS50 to my college bound nephew.

The new LS50 Meta with only 20 minutes of tunes is easy for me to hear the additional clarity of the sound. It is not as clear or clean sounding as my RAAL SR1a ribbons but it is better than the LS50. However, the goal for me was to get close to the SR1a in terms of clarity and I think the Meta are close.

The third stop for the KEF train will be the Blade 2 Meta. I got into a verbal agreement today to buy the DAC for the Blades, a used Musetec 005.

The Office system is now completed and will not be changed (ever). KEF LS50 Meta | KEF KC62 sub (using wireless) | Benchmark LA4 preamp | Benchmark AHB2 monos | Audience FrontRow speaker cable | Musetec 005 DAC

Still thinking of the amps for the Blade 2 Meta. I will try my existing KRELL Dou 175XD on them first with a CODA 07x peramp. It may need more power.

@ricevs I got your speaker tweak this weekend and have yet to try it out. I wanted to wait for the KEF LS50 Meta. Once the speakers are broken in I will plug then into the speaker terminations and give it a go. Unfortunately my speaker termination are banana. Spades would have been better for your tweak.

BTW - when Ric gives me some advice I listen, such as his recommendation of the Musetec DACs. He modded them in the past and told me to check it out.

Just listening to YYZ by Rush on the Metas. Wow, great choice to buy this speaker.





My listening room is 19 X 14 X 7.  Is that too small to realize the potential of Blade 2s?  I'm using KEF Reference 1s, low-passed to a pair of Velodyne HGS-15 with room correction and high-passed by a passive balanced Marchand filter.  Amps are Ayer VX-5 Twenty or Parasound JC 1s. 

You can put the Blades 9 inches from the front wall (per KEF UK and the manual). The Reference line needs 1 foot.

If you put the Blades along the 19 foot wall it would work rather well. Other people have put the Blades along a 14 foot wall but I think that would be a waste of the Blades ability to create a massive soundstage.

I will put mine on the LONG wall which opens up to the Family room. I also have 25 foot ceiling, so when you add up the volume of the space it is like a big room. Volume is important to consider because the Blades have bass.

The online  Stereophile review of the Blade 2 talks about room size and the Blades. That review was a bit puzzling. More info about the music reviewed rather than writing about the speaker.

I spoke with Vivid Audio about their side firing woofers and proximity to side walls. They said it depends on the building matter used in the walls. I think brick was bad (I need to search my emails).

If the room turns out to be too small, and you are a ROON or JRiver streaming user, you can contact Mitch Barnett at Accurate Sound and let him do his magic on your room + speaker + placement = accurate sound.

I used his remote service for my small office when I had Thiel CS3.7's in there. I doubt I will need help setting up the Blade 2 in my Livingroom, but that security blanket exists for me. He does an incredible job.

Search on A'gon if interested. I wrote a lot of my experience using the Convolution filter of ROON that was created by Mitch for my room and speakers.


I have had the original Blade One and now the Blade One Meta. The METAs are not broken in yet but are a great improvement in treble extension which is an acid test. I have not put the factory spikes on the METAs because I'm waiting for the GAIA footers with the carpet spike option. I'll post further when this has been done and the METAs are broken in. 

John Hirsch

Thanks for all your comments. John Hirsch; thank you and we look forward to your further comments about midrange improvements, etc with your new Blade Metas.


My LS50 Metas are maybe broken-in today and I am amazed at how much better it is than the old LS50. So much more clarity, better imaging, and a real effortless sound. I never felt that the LS50 sound veiled but today I do. In comparison, the old LS50 seems to be constrained somehow. Though I never had that feeling prior to comparing with the LS50 Meta today.

The Meta also seems to have better bass. I do not even have the fast KEF KC62 sub back in the system yet. KEF Support is holding my sub hostage. Not sure what the heck they are doing with it.

I cannot wait to buy the Blade 2 Meta for my Livingroom. The Blade 2 Meta must be phenomenal.

I was DM’ing someone about a speaker for the Krell K-300i integrated they just bought and I mentioned the TAD ME1, which were great with Luxman gear (slightly warmer than Krell). After today’s LS50 Meta revelations I told him to try the LS50 Meta or Reference 1 Meta (depending on room size) before the much more expensive TAD ME1. The ME1 has a bit more detail but I do NOT feel the sound is overall better than the LS50 Meta.

I thought the TAD ME1 was better than the old KEF Reference and the old LS50. However, today I think the Reference 1 Meta could be as good as the TAD ME1. The LS50 Meta sure sounds as good as the ME1 in my 12 x 11 x 9 treated office. The ME1 is too big for this room.

I was planning on buying the $12K CAD Yamaha NS3000 from Canada, if the LS50 Meta was not great. Those plans are off.

I have about $15K of real clean sounding gear in front of the LS50 META and close to 400 watts of power so that must help the LS50 Meta a lot.