Harvey Specter, from Suits, has a pair of Klipsch speakers on his bookcase in his Manhattan office. This would lead most people to suspect that Klipsch has to make the greatest speakers in the world. But no, no, no, not us. Call us skeptical, but we decided to take a closer look at the Klipsch R-15M speakers and make sure that Harvey is still on point, on, well everything really.
These are a relatively affordable and inexpensive pair of speakers, and Klipsch has a solid reputation for manufacturing great products in this segment of the market. Consequently, we’d expect that the Klipsch R-15M would be no exception to this.
So, let’s take a closer look, in this in-depth Klipsch R-15M Review, and see how we think they got on…
Features and Specifications
These are a small and compact set of speakers measuring only 8.2” x 7” x 12.5”. They are classified as bookshelf speakers though they would equally be at home on a desktop. They weigh in at 10.3lbs.
One of the more interesting aspects of these speakers is the coupling of the one-inch aluminum tweeter with the newly designed 90 x 90 Tractrix horn. The linear Travel Suspension one-inch aluminum tweeter is designed to increase audio accuracy, and the unusual horn speaker design has specific sound benefits, which we’ll cover a little later.
The bass response is covered by a 5.25” copper spun IMG Woofer. The woofer is a low-frequency driver and is also magnetically shielded.
They are able to deliver an output of 85 watts, this is continuous power, and an output 340 watts, this is at its peak. In anyone’s money, this is more than enough power to easily fill a small or medium-sized room.
The speakers do come with a grill. Under normal circumstances, it would be a shame to put these on as the Klipsch R-15Ms really are a good-looking pair of speakers. However, the tweeter is fairly fragile, so for any of you with young children, well, you know how the rest goes.
Build Quality & Design
Honestly, if the Klipsch R-15Ms were in a beauty contest, then it would be silk sashes, tiaras, waving, and tears all round. The copper spun woofers really set off the dark laminate cabinets to a tee. The design cues of the woofer and horn-shaped tweeter unit make these instantly recognizable as Klipsch speakers. They look amazing.
Klipsch focus most of their releases on the entry and mid-level audio products. They have been around since 1946 and have a strong reputation for build quality and design. Proud to still be made in America, you can be reasonably sure that any of their equipment will be reliable and stand the tests of time.
The fact is that these days, it seems that sound quality can be pushed down in the level of importance when it comes to the overall listening experience. With devices and gadgets becoming increasingly connected. There is an ever-increasing focus on features and functionality. This is all good to a point, but sadly at times, it does appear to negatively impact on audio quality.
With bookshelf speakers, it’s all about the sound.
So, let’s dig a little deeper and see if the Klipsch R-15Ms are more just style over substance.
One of the advantages of horn-shaped speakers is there ability to give a higher, more efficient level of audio output than with a rounded, conventional speaker. Conversely, the disadvantage of horn-shaped speakers is that the frequency response can tend to be uneven and in the worst case, produce an echo or horn shout.
Klipsch has done well to address these problems and has made changes with the latest speakers to improve audio quality. Now, listening to a pair of Klipsch R-15Ms blindfold, it would be hard, if not impossible, to identify any of the common traits we associate with horn-shaped speakers. A great job by Klipsch.
We’d have to say that the aluminum tweeter, coupled with the 90 x 90 Tractrix Horn, does a great job in delivering clean and natural sound. The high-end response and powerful dynamics are impressive. And the linear Travel Suspension Tweeter really does what it was designed for, namely in keeping distortion level to a minimum.
In our opinion, when listening to a variety of different genres through the Klipsch R-15Ms, there’s a pleasing accuracy in the listening experience at these higher frequencies, even at higher volumes. However, the one thing we did notice is that at times, the mids can sound a little thin. But, since these are passive speakers and will be run through a receiver, this is something that can be easily rectified.
Well, the bass response is nice and punchy, but it doesn’t overpower the mids and trebles. Much like the higher frequencies, the bass is clean, accurate, and tight. They create bass that is thick where it’s needed to be, thin where it’s needed to be, whilst remaining tuneful.
There’s no doubt about it that the bass really helps to create a very well-balanced overall sound. What’s more, for speakers of this size, they create a depth of sound we wouldn’t normally expect from something so small.
There are some limitations to speakers this small. Yes, they do a great job of filling a small to medium-sized room. But, if you’re looking to fill a larger sized room or your looking to really crank up the volume, then you’ll probably need to look for something more powerful.
Also, if you’re into some seriously heavy bass sounds, these are likely to fall short. This would be the same for anyone whose grown accustomed to and likes the heavy bass sounds and feeling that a subwoofer is able to deliver.
For speakers at this price point and for this size, they do a great job of delivering crisp, clear, and accurate audio. They will work well with virtually any combination of receiver you could think of. Additionally, they could happily be used in a home studio environment as reference speakers.
If you’re looking for some other options from Klipsch, it’s well worth checking out our in-depth Klipsch RB 61 ii review, and our Klipsch R 120sw review. You may also enjoy our reviews of the best bookshelf speakers under 1000 dollars, the best in wall speakers, and the best powered speakers currently available for even more exciting sound options from Klipsch.
Klipsch R-15M Pros & Cons
- They look amazing.
- Impressive output for a small speaker.
- A precise and accurate sound.
- Minimal distortion at high volumes.
- Excellent soundstage.
- Small and light.
- Excellent value for money.
- Bass not powerful enough for larger rooms.
- Mids a little thin.
- Speakers do not accept banana plugs.
All in all, Klipsch has a well-earned reputation for manufacturing good quality audio at competitive prices. With the Klipsch R-15M, they have not disappointed. For a pair of bookshelf speakers, they’ve done a great job in producing speakers with a very well-balanced sound, in a very aesthetically pleasing package, at a very fair price.
When linked with almost any receiver, they are an excellent alternative to a soundbar and subwoofer combination. In this situation, where heavy levels of bass are not required, they are likely to provide high levels of audio quality at a lower price point.
Performing well across a broad range of musical genres and listening requirements, there’s no doubt in our minds that the Klipsch R-15Ms have made a very strong case for themselves.