Klipsch Icon WF-34 Floorstanding Loudspeaker First Look
- Frequency Response: 50Hz-23kHz +/-3dB
- Power Handling: 125 W @ 8 ohms
- Sensitivity: 95.5dB
- Nominal Impedance: 8 Ohms
- Crossover Frequency: 2700Hz
- High Frequency Driver: 1" (2.5cm) titanium diaphragm compression driver mated to a 4.5" 80° x 80° round Tractrix(r) horn
- Low Frequency Drivers: Triple 4.5" (11.4cm) high-output, fiberglass cone woofers
- Enclosure: MDF Cabinet
- Enclosure Type: Bass-reflex via dual rear-firing ports
- Dimensions (HxWxD): 40" (101.6cm) x 6.5" (16.5cm) x 9.5" (24.13cm)
- Weight: 33 lbs
- Finishes: Furniture-grade wood veneer available in cabernet or espresso
Klipsch has taken slim-line to a new level with their WF series loudspeakers designed to take up less floorspace while still delivering the dynamic and detailed sound they are known for in their bigger boxed speakers.
For over 60 years, horns have been the driving force behind Klipsch speakers. The XT engineering is said to take their time-proven philosophy to new heights by altering the surface geometry of the horn with four “bumps” that are shaped like flower petals. It’s a technology that creates a wider dispersion pattern and provides more latitude in placement.
While the WF-34 employs modern advancements on the inside, it reflects a classic approach on the outside, featuring a real wood veneer cabinet finished in espresso or cabernet. Unlike most speaker manufacturers who opt for domestic veneers (cherry, oak or maple), Klipsch selected an exotic, non-endangered Berlinia veneer from West Africa. Berlinia is a sister veneer to Zebrawood, which is often featured on luxury goods. The WF-34 cabinet is carefully sanded, sealed and stained. Much like in high-end furniture manufacturing, the stain is then top coated with a polyurethane finish. This spray application involves 10 coats, with sanding in-between each coat to achieve the proper thickness. The cabinet is also inspected at every sanding level to ensure clarity over the stained veneer. To finish off the clean design approach, Klipsch employed magnetic grills so that when the grill covers are removed, no dowel holes can be seen. We really like this solution and hope more loudspeaker manufacturers start offering this feature especially since most audiophiles (myself included) prefer listening to their speakers with the grills off.
Klipsch Icon WF-34 Backview - notice the dual oval ports and bi-ampable speaker connections
With three 4 1/2" bass drivers in a 1.43 ft^3 box and dual rear firing elongated oval ports, we have little reason to doubt Klipsch's 50Hz extension claims for this speaker. The combined surface area of the three 4 1/2" drivers is roughly that of a single 8" driver. Utilizing smaller drivers allows the manufacturer to create a narrower baffle which is not only aesthetically more pleasing but can offer improved off axis response which can enhance the speakers imaging characteristics. Klipsch employed a 1" titantium diaphragm compression driver in a 4.5" 80° x 80° round Tractrix(r) horn which is said to widen dispersion across the listening area while also reducing unwanted side wall reflections so the listener can experience more of the direct soundfield.
Klipsch offers package deals for this system which includes the following speakers:
- (2) WF-34 Floorstanding Speakers ($1199/pair)
- (1) WC-24 Center Channel Speaker ($499/ea)
- (2) WS-24 Surround Speakers ($749/pair)
- (1) XW-300d Subwoofer ($699/ea)
System retail cost is $3,146 and can be purchased at most authorized Klipsch retailers including Best Buy's Magnolia division. This looks like a nice system though we would highly recommend adding an additional XW-300d subwoofer for greater impact and smoother bass response across your entire listening area. If you are looking for a great combination of performance and aesthetics for a very modest cost, the Klipsch Icon WF series looks promising though we reserve final judgment until we can get in a pair for review.
For more information, visit: http://www.klipsch.com
Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.