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opinions on epic cf-4's


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hi, first post here on the forums but been lurking for awhile...

i just sold my pair of epic cf-4 version 2 & im looking for some expert or novice opinions on them as i cant seem to find anything on the epics when i do a forum search. i'm a long time klipsch owner & audio junkie. i own some kg 5.5's & original fortes along with a rotating collection of solid state gear, my keeper amps though are dual adcom 555ii & a rotel rb-990 & a onkyo m504. the epics sounded great when i had them in rotation but spent most their 15 year time with me stored in their boxes. i just sold them & am considering selling the kg's to help fund a k-horn purchase im considering. ironically i sold the epics mainly due to the size & non use, but i'm ok with stuffing some k-horns in my space limited basement. i've wanted a pair since i fist heard them when i was a teenager 20+ years ago & now have an opportunity to buy a pair for a good price.

so... i'm looking for some opinions on the epics in general since i'm having some sellers remourse. but also would like opinions comparing them to the k-horns of mid 80's to late 90's vintage. i know there should really be no comparison but i have heard people say the early version cf-4's were the next best thing to the big heritage series line. will it be a worthwhile trade up to the k-horns? they will be hooked to my adcoms, possibly bridged mono since i have 2 555's or might go with the rotel amp as it seems to be much more musical in the low to mid volume range compared to the adcoms. i have a wide range of taste in music but listen to mainly classic rock & some newer stuff too & am always open to all kinds of recordings & plan to expand my collection to jazz, classical, oldies etc etc.

thanks in advance for any input y'all can provide.

Edited by klipschfancf4
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no one is talking just a glitch I am sure. I would have kept the CF4 and would rather own them over a set of Khorns but that's me. The CF4 biamped with the right amplifiers should do the trick. If I had a set of CF4 (have whats left of a pair of CF3 after selling the woofers) I would build new well braced cabinets in a wwt configuration like a KG as I just don't like the wtw arrangement. The horn needs to be centred at your seated ear level. CF4 woofers like to have a lot of power on hand. I think that Roy Delgado intended the CF4 as a direct radiator assualt on the Khorn he did a very good job. I think the CF3&4 are the best speakers Klipsch has released for home use. Perhaps that will stir things up. Best regards Moray James.

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  • 2 months later...

i can't comment on the K horn comparison as i have not heard a pair, But, in my experience with the CF4 ver 1(and i have tried just about everything over the 3 years that i have had them) , to maximize their full potential they need a high powered 300 or 350 watt amplifier (for mine, i have the marantz ma-9s2 mono blocks) and they have the POWER they need, after the amp, i took moray's advice and raised them up 8 inches off the ground and that helped in sound (i like to be up and move around while i listen to music so it helped for me), and lastly, (as everyone knows with these speakers, THE BRIGHTNESS of the tweeter driver) i wanted to bi amp them so much (and did) but didn't sound very good through the tweeters and another pair of the marantz mono blocks were to expensive, so what i ended up doing was hooking up a L PAD from the crossover to the tweeter horn, and it made all the difference in the world. after putting the l pad in, it made such a big difference that i'm going to do the same thing to my klf 30s but i'll hook the l pad up from amp to speaker (just on the tweeter terminal wire, not the bass) and i'll see how that sounds..

For anyone who reads this, and has a pair of cf4s or 3s hook up a L Pad from the crossover to the tweeter and then you can control the tweeter loudness on ANY type of music...I'm serious, you can keep cranking the volume and the bass and horn blend really well with a L pad and I can hear more detail in the tweeter horn after i did this

$50 bucks for Lpads on ebay

$20 speaker wire

and some wire connectors

and your $800 to $1000 dollar cf4s are now worth $2500 to $3000!

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(snip), so what i ended up doing was hooking up a L PAD from the crossover to the tweeter horn, and it made all the difference in the world. after putting the l pad in, it made such a big difference that i'm going to do the same thing to my klf 30s but i'll hook the l pad up from amp to speaker (just on the tweeter terminal wire, not the bass) and i'll see how that sounds..

For anyone who reads this, and has a pair of cf4s or 3s hook up a L Pad from the crossover to the tweeter and then you can control the tweeter loudness on ANY type of music...I'm serious, you can keep cranking the volume and the bass and horn blend really well with a L pad and I can hear more detail in the tweeter horn after i did this

$50 bucks for Lpads on ebay

$20 speaker wire

and some wire connectors

and your $800 to $1000 dollar cf4s are now worth $2500 to $3000!

I picked up some CF4's last Friday and I am refinishing them right now.

Can you be specific about WHICH L-pad to use, or maybe post a link? Also, where did you mount them?

+++

I just got both mine hooked up temporarily with an old 100 wpc receiver, and all I've listened to so far is FM radio, some rock and a little classical. I am withholding judgement on the sound because they are not set up properly, inferior receiver, poor source material, etc.

My preliminary judgement is that they can play LOUD, and the horn really beams. They seem to image super well. They seem to be like a jet airliner on a runway; you get cruise around on half power, but it's not very exciting and you can't get in the air. But hit full throttle in the jet and it pins you to your seat. These CF4's are a LOT like that!

I'm not certain what I'm hearing, but the horn seems to overpower the two 12" woofs at LOW/MED volume. Crank things up and the horn gets a little louder, but those woofs REALLY get into Beast Mode as they get louder and catch up to the horn's SPL, balancing out the sound.

This is also new to me, but those cabinets vibrate like crazy! There is sound from the front (duh) but there is also an "aura" of sound which eminates from the top, sides and back within about 2 feet, which have their own sound! It's not unpleasant, I'm just not sure what to make of it.

+++

Megarock do you have any advice for me, or comments on your experience with them? FYI my musical tastes are for jazz horn like Maynard Ferguson, and classical, like Copeland and Berstein.

La Fiesta:

Edited by wvu80
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wvu80, for the L pad, I purchased them off ebay for 22.95 each and the specs were 100w 8 ohm L pads and they came from springfield speaker out of missouri, and they are made in taiwan. i bought a wood box and i am going to make a L pad control unit for my main listening area, this way i not moving back and forth trying to dial in the sound. for right now i just have the wires running out the port tubes for right now. later on i'll hide the wires

your judgement of the speaker is spot on, they do image really well and they can rock at high volumes, but for me it just seemed like the horn over powered the woofers, with the L pad it all evened out

As for the vibration i haven't really noticed it in my speakers, moray james can talk to you more about bracing the inside of the speaker, the older forum had all the info about this speaker and TONS of knowledge about its history, i just recently got back online and see klipsch has the new forum and i don't know if they saved the older chat topics

a person who went by Ka7aiq or something like that, started a forum in 2008 and it alot of good info on the cf series

My advice is to at least get an amp that has alot of power, to me that is the most important thing, the speakers come alive when you give them power!

on my marantz meter at 270 watts the speakers sound really good and play music with ease!

try the L pad , if you don't like it you can change it back and try bi amping with maybe tube amps for the horn.

if you still need a terminal post, go on ebay and the person under -gtact- has all kinds of klipsch parts. scroll his pages and he has a pair of speaker cable posts, the same type that you are looking for

and if you ever need a spare woofer, the # is k-29-k not k-30-kn that is for the version 3 models...the k-29-k are hard to come by

happy listening

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Megarock, thanks for the tip on the Ebay seller and the older forums . I am only a week old on these forums, but maybe there are some read-only archives available. I'll take a look and report back if I find them. :)

+++

Regarding the L-pad: My old receiver has a 5-band equalizer. What is the difference between simply using the EQ to tame the highs versus using the L-pad? I tried using the EQ and didn't hear much improvement, but since the speakers are being refinished, they are on their side, have plastic bags over the drivers for dust protection, and they just are not in dial-in mode. I feel like I can't properly evaluate if the EQ might be an adequate fix vis-a-vis the L-pad.

Edited by wvu80
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Megarock, thanks for the tip on the Ebay seller and the older forums . I am only a week old on these forums, but maybe there are some read-only archives available. I'll take a look and report back if I find them. :)

+++

Regarding the L-pad: My old receiver has a 5-band equalizer. What is the difference between simply using the EQ to tame the highs versus using the L-pad? I tried using the EQ and didn't hear much improvement, but since the speakers are being refinished, they are on their side, have plastic bags over the drivers for dust protection, and they just are not in dial-in mode. I feel like I can't properly evaluate if the EQ might be an adequate fix vis-a-vis the L-pad.

I have run EV DH1506 driver on my CF3 horns, thought it was a massive improvement. I did not spend any time playing with the combination as I then began to play with Karlson K-Tubes on both the DH1506 and the DH1A and prefer them by a wide margin over the horns. Best regards Moray James.

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I recently sold a nice set of these. They do sound nice and have very, very solid bass. That is probably their strong point. If you like bass heavy music or are looking for HT speakers, these will do very well. For most of the music I listen to, I do prefer the Cornwalls that I recently got as they are more accurate in the mids and above when paired with good tube amplification. And I do prefer my Khorns over the Cornwalls.

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just noticed my old thread revived. it sure didnt get much activity when i first posted it...

thanks for the opinions on the topic of epics & comparing them to k-horns. i did end up buying the k-horns & after some initial issues & adjustments & growing pains i have grown quite fond of them. however i still feel they are a little bright at higher volume levels & are not as "balanced" as other klipsch i own or compared to the cf-4's. the mids are just so strong on the k-horns its a huge adjustment coming from the other models i have owned or heard.

looks like we have a couple new cf-4 owners recently, maybe they can chime in with their opinions after they do some listening.

Edited by klipschfancf4
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A good friend of mine started out with cf2's and went through the lengths of the earth to obtain 3's and 4's as well as version 1&2. Anyhow in my demo of all and owning a couple myself the cf4 is a killer rock speaker. I would really like to go the route moray james has mentioned with the horn at the top woofers at bottom as well as a few other mods to narrow them into the use of the efficiency they have with biwiring/biamp etc...as well as a few other mods. They do provide huge crystal clear sound in stock form. I never did run them on a tube amp and would had liked to tried them in many other configurations.

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I am using Eminence L-pads on my CF-2's. Damped the horns very well and removed the acoustic foam pads, replaced with sonofil. Mine are version 1. I never noticed any cabinet resonance on the CF-2's, but it could be due to the smaller size. The cabinets are very well made and braced.

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I am using Eminence L-pads on my CF-2's. Damped the horns very well and removed the acoustic foam pads, replaced with sonofil. Mine are version 1. I never noticed any cabinet resonance on the CF-2's, but it could be due to the smaller size. The cabinets are very well made and braced.

Rivervalleymgb, where did you get your sonofil from, all I can find comes from europe.... and how many packages of sonofil did it take!

anyone have any other suggestions for padding?

Thanks

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Megarock, thanks for the tip on the Ebay seller and the older forums . I am only a week old on these forums, but maybe there are some read-only archives available. I'll take a look and report back if I find them. :)

+++

Regarding the L-pad: My old receiver has a 5-band equalizer. What is the difference between simply using the EQ to tame the highs versus using the L-pad? I tried using the EQ and didn't hear much improvement, but since the speakers are being refinished, they are on their side, have plastic bags over the drivers for dust protection, and they just are not in dial-in mode. I feel like I can't properly evaluate if the EQ might be an adequate fix vis-a-vis the L-pad.

I have run EV DH1506 driver on my CF3 horns, thought it was a massive improvement. I did not spend any time playing with the combination as I then began to play with Karlson K-Tubes on both the DH1506 and the DH1A and prefer them by a wide margin over the horns. Best regards Moray James.

Megarock, thanks for the tip on the Ebay seller and the older forums . I am only a week old on these forums, but maybe there are some read-only archives available. I'll take a look and report back if I find them. :)

+++

Regarding the L-pad: My old receiver has a 5-band equalizer. What is the difference between simply using the EQ to tame the highs versus using the L-pad? I tried using the EQ and didn't hear much improvement, but since the speakers are being refinished, they are on their side, have plastic bags over the drivers for dust protection, and they just are not in dial-in mode. I feel like I can't properly evaluate if the EQ might be an adequate fix vis-a-vis the L-pad.

I have run EV DH1506 driver on my CF3 horns, thought it was a massive improvement. I did not spend any time playing with the combination as I then began to play with Karlson K-Tubes on both the DH1506 and the DH1A and prefer them by a wide margin over the horns. Best regards Moray James.

Bought a pair of ev dh 1506 off Ebay...excellent recommendation Moray, big improvement in sound quality, just one ? thou, did you use the same plastic horn, the EV's are very heavy feels like it could just snap my horn in half..... :smile:

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Megarock, thanks for the tip on the Ebay seller and the older forums . I am only a week old on these forums, but maybe there are some read-only archives available. I'll take a look and report back if I find them. :)

+++

Regarding the L-pad: My old receiver has a 5-band equalizer. What is the difference between simply using the EQ to tame the highs versus using the L-pad? I tried using the EQ and didn't hear much improvement, but since the speakers are being refinished, they are on their side, have plastic bags over the drivers for dust protection, and they just are not in dial-in mode. I feel like I can't properly evaluate if the EQ might be an adequate fix vis-a-vis the L-pad.

I have run EV DH1506 driver on my CF3 horns, thought it was a massive improvement. I did not spend any time playing with the combination as I then began to play with Karlson K-Tubes on both the DH1506 and the DH1A and prefer them by a wide margin over the horns. Best regards Moray James.

Megarock, thanks for the tip on the Ebay seller and the older forums . I am only a week old on these forums, but maybe there are some read-only archives available. I'll take a look and report back if I find them. :)

+++

Regarding the L-pad: My old receiver has a 5-band equalizer. What is the difference between simply using the EQ to tame the highs versus using the L-pad? I tried using the EQ and didn't hear much improvement, but since the speakers are being refinished, they are on their side, have plastic bags over the drivers for dust protection, and they just are not in dial-in mode. I feel like I can't properly evaluate if the EQ might be an adequate fix vis-a-vis the L-pad.

I have run EV DH1506 driver on my CF3 horns, thought it was a massive improvement. I did not spend any time playing with the combination as I then began to play with Karlson K-Tubes on both the DH1506 and the DH1A and prefer them by a wide margin over the horns. Best regards Moray James.

Bought a pair of ev dh 1506 off Ebay...excellent recommendation Moray, big improvement in sound quality, just one ? thou, did you use the same plastic horn, the EV's are very heavy feels like it could just snap my horn in half..... :smile:

I have to say moray james, these new EV compression drivers sound really good, i'm playin cd after cd after cd, makes me wanna say the K-63 is not that great for the cf series (at least not at high volumes, for music anyway,

since the EV drivers are heavy this make me think that maybe the cf3,4 should of been around 150 to 160 lbs when they built them, I know going up that much in weight, you are gonna lose some consumers because of size and mobility,

but with what i'm hearing out of these cf-4s now, it smokes my klf-30s with the titaniums by a mile.... :emotion-21:

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I agree the DH1506 is a fine driver for sure and heavy. I would definitely use a hanger or shelf brace to provide support for the DH1506. If you think the DH1506 is impressive check out the EV DH1A at only 23.5 lbs each now that's a tweeter. I used the CF3 horn for a short period of time but switched to a Karlson K-Tube made with thin paper, double cut away version. Best regards Moray James.

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  • 1 year later...

I still have my Epic CF-3's and have no desire to change them "unless" I come across version 1 models of the CF-3 or CF-4.  Other than that, I really don't care what's said about the 3's being "undesirable"; they sound great to me.  (bested KLF-30's hands down)

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