KEF is named after Kent Engineering and Foundry where the company was first located. Their founder, Raymond Cooke a BBC electrical engineer, was propelled by a love of music and a refusal to compromise, and he leveraged technology at every turn to ensure KEF’s position at the cutting edge of audio. Cooke was keen to experiment with new materials and technologies to create products that could reproduce recordings as natural as the original performance.
The first KEF speaker, the three-way K1, incorporated the use of synthetic materials. In the following year, the first ultra-compact two-way speaker system designed to give true high-fidelity performance was born. Raymond Cooke re-established his working relationship with the BBC as KEF took on the exclusive manufacture of the LS5/1a monitor. The B110 and T27 drivers followed and were selected by the BBC for use in the legendary LS3/5a monitor – the most famous reference speaker ever produced.
By the end of their first decade, KEF was established as a leading company in the audio industry with commercial and critical success not only for the KEF loudspeaker systems but for the drive units which were adopted by numerous companies around the world into their own systems.
To celebrate KEF’s 50th anniversary, the new classic LS50 was born in 2012. With numerous technological breakthroughs, LS50 took the original LS3/5a studio monitor concept and brought it to the living room. It was a pioneer in enabling everyone to experience great sound at homes. In 2017, KEF introduced the first generation of LS50 Wireless, a complete fully active music system, using the LS50 platform and brings high-fidelity sound to the digital lifestyle.
A list of breakthroughs spanning more than half a century, and patents and academic papers alike testify to decades of progress, from the early use of synthetic materials to the Reference Series which determines industry standards to this day. KEF’s insistence on excellence is at the heart of a virtuous circle, which attracts the world’s most gifted acoustic engineers to join in the pursuit of the best possible sound.