Klipsch Blog - Vinyl Revival

Klipsch Speakers - The Legendary "Live" Sound

Klipsch, one of the first U.S loudspeaker companies, has been building premium speakers since 1946. When Paul W. Klipsch, one of America's most celebrated audio pioneers, founded Klipsch & Associates, he was operating inside a tin shed in Hope, Arkansas.

PWK was a relentless perfectionist who spearheaded the Hi-Fi movement with the company's foundation product, the Klipschorn, along with the La Scala, Cornwall, Forte and Heresy models, is still manufactured today. A true music lover, Paul's goal was to reproduce the excitement of a live orchestra in his living room. The current Klipsch speaker range combines over 70 years of Klipsch Signature acoustic expertise with cutting edge technology. They pack a serious punch for their size. With their hybrid Tractrix horn loaded tweeters and copper toned Cerametallic woofers they have a high energy efficiency that delivers room filling, clear, detailed “live” sound.

In 1946, Paul W. Klipsch (PWK) changed the face of the audio industry by inventing, discovering, hypothesizing, and proving that it was darn well possible to make and reproduce exciting, explosive, accurate audio. Real, dynamic music was heard in living rooms for the first time – nearly mimicking the power of a live performance. Along the way, PWK worked with industry giants, famous pop stars, and some of the smartest people in the world – always in search of a better sound.


The Acoustic Principles of Klipsch Sound

As stated by Paul W. Klipsch:

High Efficiency/Low Distortion: Klipsch horn technology is highly efficient, providing more accurate sound with less power and less distortion — resulting in louder, cleaner audio. Klipsch’s Law: Efficiency is inversely proportional to distortion.

Controlled Directivity: Klipsch horn technology accurately directs sound to the proper locations, which, in turn, creates a more lifelike soundstage without wasting acoustic energy where sound is not needed or desired.

Wide Dynamic Range: The softest sounds are reproduced with remarkable clarity and the loudest sounds are delivered without harshness or distortion — with the greatest possible range between the softest and loudest sounds.

Flat Frequency Response: Audio is delivered without frequency bias — no unnatural highs, mids or lows — reproducing recorded sound as accurately as possible without colorization.


Paul’s goal was to reproduce the dynamics and excitement of a live orchestra performance in his living room. An engineering breakthrough when it was introduced, the Klipschorn remains one of the most highly praised loudspeakers in the world and is the only loudspeaker that has been in continuous production for over 65 years.

A local cabinetmaker and the Baldwin Piano Company assist Paul in building his first 20 Klipschorn speakers. First introduced in 1957, the Heresy, a three-way design, started out as a compact center channel speaker to accompany the Klipschorn in three-speaker stereo arrays.

Another classic Klipsch model that is still in production today is the La Scala. Named after the Teatro alla Scala in Italy, the original La Scala was unveiled in 1963. Cosmetically improved over the years, the La Scala provides Klipschorn-like performance from a smaller cabinet that does not require corner location.

Klipsch Professional Sound

Klipsch has always had a professional application for live stage and screen environments. In 1977 Klipsch & Associates beefed up its professional speaker line with the 500-pound MCM speaker. Designed for touring sound and cinema applications, the MCM delivers enough power to rock the house down. The low frequency punch is provided by a KPT-MWM dual 15-inch high efficiency horn-loaded woofer enclosure aided by a separate single 12-inch Tractrix Horn-loaded mid-bass device the KPT-XII. High frequencies are effortlessly reproduced by the KPT-941-HF Tractrix Horn and KDE-75-8P titanium compression driver. The MCM Grand is ultra efficient and in correct multi-channel configuration can yield absolutely even sound coverage to every seat in the house. The MCM Grand is just an example of Klipsch professional technologies that have been used throughout the Klipsch family of speaker ranges through to current day.

Klipsch Heritage Series

The little town of Hope, Arkansas is the birthplace of the Klipsch Heritage range of speakers. Assembled with cabinets handmade there since the 1950's, Klipsch are incredibly proud to continue this practice in the United States.

The reason these sound so live and realistic? THE HORNS. These have horn driven mids and highs and these are not the horns of yesterday (the 60s and 70s). No more hollow sound, no more sounding like a megaphone. Nope, todays horn speakers from Klipsch, at least the heritage line, sound like butter. Smooth, rich, huge and filled with presence. You can hear the breath, the cracks in the voice. Again, these speakers are NEVER fatiguing or at all bright even when driven to concert level.

The Klipsch Heritage range can sound explosive even at almost inaudible volumes. This lets the speakers be played at significantly lower volume without losing the sense of hearing real music. Don't think that this dynamics issue is trivial - it is what makes most speakers sound like speakers and not live music. Unlike most speakers, the Heritage range dynamics don't compress at super high volumes.

The Klipsch's have detail without being etched and harsh, you have a gorgeous full magical midrange where these speakers excels the most and you have bass that is unreal, and is used when called upon. These things can rock you like a hurricane or whisp you away with gentle sounds of smooth jazz. Vocals will be with you in the room, big and rich sound. Once you have heard horns, and like them, you are hooked. They have a awesome soundstage and these speakers look impressive even when they just sit there with their beautiful timber aesthetic.

Klipsch Reference Series

Klipsch call them Reference speakers because they take you back to the original - and remind you of what the artist meant to be delivered to the listener. Special nuances and dynamics reveal the intent of the artist and open up emotions that allow us to enjoy the the true message that the artist intended. A distinctive trait with all Klipsch Loudspeakers is their "Live" sound.

Throughout the Reference range including the RP-500M and RP-600M models incorporate the pistonic action of Klipsch’s exclusive Linear Travel Suspension titanium tweeter is used, alongside the signature ‘copper’ Cerametallic woofers (and Tractrix ports) for low frequencies. The Tractrix Horn tweeter enclosure ensures that the sound energy is primarily aimed at the listening position and is not reflected off walls, floor and ceiling. The titanium horn mounted tweeter is designed to produce clear detailed real-to-life sound with greater dispersion for excellent stereo image and soundstage. The aesthetically beautiful copper Cerametallic woofers are made from an extremely light rigid material that holds its shape whilst delivering powerful bass with maximum efficiency.


Klipsch Active Series

The Klipsch Active speakers incorporate an inbuilt amplifier so all you have to do is add a source component to have a complete music listening system. They have an inbuilt phono preamplifier for direct turntable connection, a digital input for easy TV connection, USB and 3.5mm auxiliary input for direct connection of your Smartphone or tablet. They also offer the convenience of wireless Bluetooth connectivity and an infrared remote control. The Klipsch Active series of powered audio systems blends the acoustics and classic design legacy of Paul W. Klipsch with the latest technologies available today. To complement all this convenience there is the famous Klipsch "live" sound - and that's what brings the music to life.

Klipsch Subwoofers

The Klipsch SPL series subwoofers are a step up from the Klipsch Reference series. Featuring a high-efficiency Class-D amplifier and spun copper Cerametallic woofer, the Klipsch SPL series subwoofers deliver best-in-class low frequency output. The built-in, high efficiency amplifier features an analog preamp design, which maintains the original signal path for cleaner, true-to-source reproduction. The Class D output stage ensures maximum efficiency for maximum output, detail, and low frequency power. Cerametallic woofers are exceptionally light and extremely rigid, providing remarkable low frequency response with minimal cone breakup and distortion for higher, cleaner output using less amplifier power.

Other Klipsch Products

Klipsch also produce headphone amplifiers, Bluetooth and Wireless speakers all designed to perform to the legendary Klipsch standard and deliver the famous Klipsch "Live" sound.

Please click on the highlighted links to go to the product pages or to go to the Klipsch product page CLICK HERE.



Back to blog