Kef and McIntosh

any thoughts on matching Kef R3 or an older 103/3 with an MC2255 and C33 pre? I’m trying to decide if I keep the Mac gear long term but don’t really have any adequate speakers for them right now and these 2 options are available locally for pretty good price.


edit: should add that the Kube equalizer would be coming with the 103s


Personally I find the Kef/Mac combo pretty dull (not rolled off just lacking air). Specifically in the highs. I am a MC462 owner so no hate here. If you like Kef and like Mac they are probably fine together. But I could think of a lot of speakers I would rather have but speakers are personal for sure. 

That's what I was fearing. I have heard some refer to the Mac sound as "veiled" and Kef as neutral, especially in the higher end and that did not seem like an ideal combo. I honestly have very little experience with high end systems and am trying to figure out (aged 58) a path forward on a reasonable budget (for now, under 2k). As I noted in another thread, I am not entirely committed to keeping the Mac gear, although it is by far the nicest stuff I have ever owned. I don't even know what an accurate, revealing system sounds like although I can guess. I do know that I do not like bright (who does?) and am even pretty sensitive to bright/shrill.  Any suggestions from your list of speakers you "would rather have"?

Honestly just have a pretty lukewarm feeling about Kef. They do nothing wrong but nothing great IMO. You should just listen yourself and see, maybe you will love them as many people do. $2k can go a long way if you are open to speakers that are used. Older speakers that are not the hot item right now are cheap too. I have seen Revel 208s for sale around $2k which is silly good at that price. I would go to audio mart and sort by price and see what is in your area. Also some good stuff local on Facebook market place.

In the $2000 price point the big names (Kef, B&W, Focal, Sonus Faber, etc) all make under performing speakers that are cost driven. I think you are better off with direct sale brands like, Arendal, Q Acoustics, etc.

you can get a pair of JBL 580s for $558?!?!!! Direct from JBL. These are plain out good and almost free! Free shipping both ways with a risk free trial. Blows my mind. A few of my local friends have these and they are great.

I love it when someone comes on the forum asking a question and folk pop up trying to sell them something else without even addressing the question. I had the Kef R 105/3's with kube and found that 2nd gen uniq driver to be highly revealing and needing quality power. I ended up with a Krell kav 300 il driving the top with a B&K 4420 driving the woofers and I listened at 104 db all day! After trying several headliners, I landed back with Kef, the Blades this time and mating them to a c49 and 2 Mc611's is by far the best sound i've heard yet.