An honoree award was granted to KEF for an innovative sound bar design. The KHT8005 is a high-end sophisticated unit with Uni-Q technology to allow users enjoy the same involving, evenly dispersed and disarmingly natural 3D sound wherever they are. KEF is also UK’s No 1 for the past 5 years.
KEF KHT8005 is designed specifically to complement larger flat HDTV screens of 42” and above. It can be mounted above or below the tv, while the design is familiar enough for most flat screen HDTVs with its black finishing. This sound bar incorporates the center speaker with both the left and right speakers within one two-way closed box. There are rear satellites which can be positioned horizontally or vertically. The acoustically inert cast aluminum enclosure finished in gloss black eliminates any internal waves that might cause muddiness to the outstanding sonic clarity.
The front and satellite units are both two-way closed box with high gloss black finish. This top UK brand for the past 5 years designed the soundbar main unit at 4.7” x 37.8” x 3.1” weighing at only 4.6lbs, with the satellites measuring 7.7” x 3.1” x 2.4” for only 1.1lbs.
The KUBE-2 subwoofer gives reasonable weight to the performance and it consists of a 200mm long-throw LF cone and matching passive radiator to drive this 200W Class-D amp. This KUBE-2 subwoofer measures at 13.2” x 13.0” x 13.0” and weighs 26.5lbs. It is has a black with gloss upper surface finish.
Setting up the KEF KHT8005
Soundbar setting up are easy. Purchase comes with a wall-mount bracket and table stand so that users may choose which way to mount it. Even the satellite speakers can be wall mounted or sitting on a flat surface.
The 12 page user manual has minimal words and maximum illustrations. The detailed drawings do help most users with the installation, and there is an AV Speaker Configuration Settings guide on page 11. Clearly it states that the satellite loudspeakers must be considered “small” in the bass management menu on the AV amplifier/receiver. It also reminds users that the bass output must be sent to the subwoofer specifically. There is no telling why this is not set as a fixed configuration that users cannot modify.
KEF KHT8005 features true Uni-Q 5.1surround sound from four high definition speakers. One main unit, two satellite speakers and a subwoofer means that this system is basically five speakers packed together as compact as possible. The KUBE-2 subwoofer ensures that bass come heavy and gives users a certain assurance that there won’t be a lack of it.
KEF has done well employing the Uni-Q into the system, as this Uni-Q technology has gained a certain following due to its superior performance since the late 80s. It provides audiophile quality sound. Dialog is clear, and sufficient bass leads to an almost perfect 5.1 surround sound experience.
However, users must remember to configure the settings based on the manual. When the configurations do not follow, performance dropped and sounds get muffled.
Pros and Cons
The user manual is a useful guide for installation with all the illustrations. While the hardware setup is easy, there is no telling why this system needs much manual software configuration. KEF knows clearly that failure to configure this system in a certain way will reduce the sonic quality and potentially cause damage to the satellite loudspeakers. The satellite speakers are to be set at “small” because high level, low frequency signals are sent to these small speakers. KEF knows this, but does not make it a fixed default. Instead, it puts a reminder to users in the manual.
The KEF KHT8005 does not come cheap. There is a little bit more work than regular sound bars for setup because purchase comes with two satellite speakers, an uncommon feature for sound bars. Plus, some configurations that should be fixed has been set in a way that allows users to configure it manually, which could cause potential damage to the satellite speakers. Yet, KEF would have gained a following with the Uni-Q technology that wins hands down against most other technology in the market.