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The Art & Science of Sound -

Ten Essential Jazz Pioneers, Part Two

Many times, improper subwoofer placement is the biggest challenge you’ll face when building your audio system. We must often compromise between where a subwoofer sounds best and where it looks best. Aesthetics often take priority over acoustics which can frustrate a new subwoofer owner when the placement of the subwoofer doesn’t let the subwoofer operate at its best. Low notes are affected by the walls, corners, and furnishings in a room in ways that can seriously diminish sound quality. KEF subwoofers use an ingenious equaliser that compensates for room placement issues by adjusting the low frequency output based on placement near a wall, in a corner, or even in a cabinet. KEF subwoofers can even adjust for apartment living, allowing you to have great bass response while still being a good neighbour! Because of these innovative features, the compromise between acoustics and aesthetics is no longer an issue.

Prior to the advent of jazz in the years before World War I, Western music hit strictly on the beat – think of martial music or the symphonies of the day. As hard as it is to imagine, the only Western music that played around with the strict beat were the waltzes written by Johann Strauss in the latter half of the 19th Century. As jazz developed in the 1920s, musicians began to emphasis the rhythmic spaces between the notes – a little before, maybe a little after – and the concept of swinging the beat began. Many stories float around claiming that this musician or that was the first to coin the phrase and concept, but generally it seems to have come from the musical community inhabited by Louis Armstrong, Chick Webb and Earl Hines. It’s also important to recognize the influence the waltzes of the 19th Century played in helping develop swing music.

In Ten Essential Jazz Artists, Part Two we continue to look at the musicians who changed the musical paradigm of the time with their innovations. Innovations that are still in use today, regardless of genre.

Track to Hear: Black and Tan Fantasy.

EARL HINES. Nicknamed “Fatha,” Earl Hines is considered the father of modern piano playing. BornEarl Hines near Pittsburgh Pennsylvania in 1903, Hines met Louis Armstrong in Chicago when both were in their early twenties. Completely enthralled with Hines’ playing style, Armstrong replaced his own soon-to-be-ex-wife Lil Hardin Armstrong with Hines. What we are completely familiar with today as jazz, rock or country piano was born from Hines’ revolutionary and fundamental changes to how musicians approached the instrument. Using single notes in a ‘stride’ fashion with the left hand and simpler accompaniment often just consisting of octaves with the right hand, Hines’ unique stops and starts and impeccable time pushed and pulled the piano from polite parlors into smokey gin mills where the instrument always wanted to play.

What about the placement?

Many times, improper subwoofer placement is the biggest challenge you’ll face when building your audio system. We must often compromise between where a subwoofer sounds best and where it looks best. Aesthetics often take priority over acoustics which can frustrate a new subwoofer owner when the placement of the subwoofer doesn’t let the subwoofer operate at its best. Low notes are affected by the walls, corners, and furnishings in a room in ways that can seriously diminish sound quality. KEF subwoofers use an ingenious equaliser that compensates for room placement issues by adjusting the low frequency output based on placement near a wall, in a corner, or even in a cabinet. KEF subwoofers can even adjust for apartment living, allowing you to have great bass response while still being a good neighbour! Because of these innovative features, the compromise between acoustics and aesthetics is no longer an issue.

With KEF’s Wireless Subwoofer Adapter Kit, placement of your subwoofer is no longer limited. The KW1 Wireless Subwoofer Adapter Kit eliminates the need for a bulky cable connection from your amplifier to the subwoofer. Simply connect the KW1 Transmitter to the output of your amplifier and then connect the KW1 Receiver to your subwoofer. You can then place your subwoofer anywhere in your room, without compromising performance at all.

Does the size of the subwoofer matter?

Many times, improper subwoofer placement is the biggest challenge you’ll face when building your audio system. We must often compromise between where a subwoofer sounds best and where it looks best. Aesthetics often take priority over acoustics which can frustrate a new subwoofer owner when the placement of the subwoofer doesn’t let the subwoofer operate at its best. Low notes are affected by the walls, corners, and furnishings in a room in ways that can seriously diminish sound quality. KEF subwoofers use an ingenious equaliser that compensates for room placement issues by adjusting the low frequency output based on placement near a wall, in a corner, or even in a cabinet. KEF subwoofers can even adjust for apartment living, allowing you to have great bass response while still being a good neighbour! Because of these innovative features, the compromise between acoustics and aesthetics is no longer an issue.

What about the placement?

Many times, improper subwoofer placement is the biggest challenge you’ll face when building your audio system. We must often compromise between where a subwoofer sounds best and where it looks best. Aesthetics often take priority over acoustics which can frustrate a new subwoofer owner when the placement of the subwoofer doesn’t let the subwoofer operate at its best. Low notes are affected by the walls, corners, and furnishings in a room in ways that can seriously diminish sound quality.

How do I connect the subwoofer to my speakers?

Connecting your subwoofer is generally quite simple: Use the LFE outputs on your amplifier or receiver, or a pre-amp output if your receiver/amplifier doesn’t have an LFE output. LFE contains only the low frequencies. If your receiver doesn’t have an LFE or a pre-amp output, you can use the subwoofer’s high-level inputs by simply connecting the speaker output from the amp to the high-level input on the subwoofer. For more information on connecting your subwoofer, always consult your subwoofer’s user manual. 

How do I connect the subwoofer to my speakers?

Connecting your subwoofer is generally quite simple: Use the LFE outputs on your amplifier or receiver, or a pre-amp output if your receiver/amplifier doesn’t have an LFE output. LFE contains only the low frequencies. If your receiver doesn’t have an LFE or a pre-amp output, you can use the subwoofer’s high-level inputs by simply connecting the speaker output from the amp to the high-level input on the subwoofer. For more information on connecting your subwoofer, always consult your subwoofer’s user manual. 

How do I connect the subwoofer to my speakers?

Connecting your subwoofer is generally quite simple: Use the LFE outputs on your amplifier or receiver, or a pre-amp output if your receiver/amplifier doesn’t have an LFE output. LFE contains only the low frequencies. If your receiver doesn’t have an LFE or a pre-amp output, you can use the subwoofer’s high-level inputs by simply connecting the speaker output from the amp to the high-level input on the subwoofer. For more information on connecting your subwoofer, always consult your subwoofer’s user manual. 

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Connecting to your LS50 Wireless II

When using the LS50 Wireless II, subwoofer connection is even easier. Simply connect the RCA cable to the SUB output on the LS50 Wireless II – there’s a SUB connector on both the primary and secondary speakers for ultimate convenience! Once connected to your LS50 Wireless II, you can control LS50 Wireless II subwoofer output’s gain, polarity and low-pass frequency from the KEF Connect app.

Subwoofers can be a major enhancement to any music or movie system, and they’re not incredibly difficult to set up especially with a quality product that has been designed to be user-friendly and high performing.

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