Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Round 2: Focal K2P Series 165K2P speakers

As expected my K2Ps took about a month to arrive from France. When the speakers were here I had a pleasant surprise. Turns out mine are the latest K2P Improved models. The K2P "Improved" apparently sports an improved crossover. Visually this crossover has a red coloured inductor vs the more orange hued inductor on the earlier version. Picture below of my K2P Improved crossover. Pardon the lousy quality. The picture quality from my Nokia 6630 smartphone really leaves a lot to be desired.
Another pix of crossover still in box
Pix below of the older crossover. Not easy to spot the difference from the pictures eh? You really have to compare them side by side.
Pix of the K2P mids still in box. The K2P mid has a polished aluminium phase plug compared to simple rubber dustcap on the KPS. Looks absolutely fab! Finishing is really top notch especially the integration of the phase plug with the woofer. Tweeters are the same TN52s.

The K2P mid is also heavier due to a larger magnet and overall depth is 6mm deeper making installation trickier. Cars with doors that have a shallow depth are gonna be trouble to install. Luckily had no issues with the Sentra. Pix of the mids installed. Shame all this lovely stuff is hidden behind the stock door panel and grille.

Crossovers nicely installed and hidden behind a plastic kickpanel cover. Once the plastic cover is reinstalled, the crossovers cannot be seen.

Picture below of the tweets nicely integrated into the a-pillar plastic housing. Fab work from Uncle David! The vinyl a-pillar wrap is dead match colour wise to the stock a-pillar plastic cover. Picture quality better thanks to proper camera borrowed from my bro CP. Had yet to buy my Olympus camera then. Also took the opportunity to sound deaden the a-pillars with one layer of GSI Dampit material.

View from the side.

As expected sound quality was up a notch compared to the KPS. The K2P basically fixes all the KPS's flaws such as the not so excellent midband. Imaging and coherence was up a notch too! The K2Ps generally play all types of music very well and are very dynamic sounding. Midbass suprisingly is less to my ears compared to the KPS. Time for a sub! I had the tweeter level on the crossover set to -4dB. If things sound too sharp you can go all the way down to -7dB. All it takes is a simple push of the selector buttons on the crossover. There are essentially 3 buttons and these are indicated as -1, -2 and -4dB. The midrange level can be adjusted too though there are only 2 options. Mid High or Mid Flat. I did try the Mid High setting but the sound got a little too bright for my ears so I settled on Mid Flat. All this is detailed in the excellent 18 page user manual complete with diagrams. Half of it is in French so if you wanna learn Francais you know where to start.

Oh! and be careful with the amp gain settings. These speakers are very very sensitive to gain adjustment. Too much gain can also make them sound bright. Don't say I didn't warn you. When set-up properly, these speakers sound like heaven to my ears. They did take quite a bit to fully bed in. I'd say give about a month or so of regular driving and listening before these speakers reach a proper level of sound consistency. Didn't wait that long though as by now I had decided I was gonna junk my rear-fill stock speakers and order a Focal 27KX 11" subwoofer but that's another story for another day. BTW, my bro Fooyc reviewed said speakers in his blog. Check it out.

No comments: