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Klipsch WF-34 5.1-Channel Speaker System - Klipsch WF-34 5.1-Channel Speaker System

By Danny Phillips


  • Recommended by TR
Klipsch WF-34 5.1-Channel Speaker System


Our Score


Review Price free/subscription

Running through a selection of favourite Blu-ray test scenes from Hellboy II, Iron Man and Transformers, the system handles each one with a silky, assured touch. We cranked up our amp’s volume dial up to 11 and the system didn’t even flinch – the WF-34s achieve wonderfully deep bass tones and deliver raucous effects with drive and purpose. High-frequencies are clean and controlled with no brightness, and they integrate seamlessly with the centre and subwoofer.

The centre also does a great job of lifting human speech above the din of Transformers’ end battle scenes, but has the necessary range to express Optimus Prime’s deep, warming tones. The rears don’t let the side down either, chipping in with snappy effects during busy scenes, while WDST does a superb job of dispersing them far into the room. Their ability to join up behind the listening position ensures an immersive, unified soundstage.

It’s topped off by a virtuoso performance from the XW-300d. Don’t let the size fool you – this little box can muster some seriously well-defined and taut bass, and those EQ modes help rather than hinder its performance. The Depth mode is a bit OTT perhaps but the Punch mode gives the bass a more subtle but telling kick up the backside, which helps when the going gets tough.

Supplementing its undeniable movie prowess, the system applies the same levels of power, subtlety and control to music playback, making it a great all-rounder.


The WF-34 system might not be cheap, but its sound quality is as good as we’ve heard at this price point and that, combined with its robust build quality and features, make it a good investment if you’re serious about home cinema.

Scores In Detail


Our Score

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Hans Gruber

March 5, 2010, 6:49 am

Well, you can't put those in your ears!


March 5, 2010, 6:42 pm

Once again, please can you run a tutorial on home cinema surround sound? Whilst I enjoyed reading the review, as an uninitiated, I was left wondering:

1. What does "tonal match" mean?

2. What do those "frequency response" figures mean? Are they good? Should we know?

3. Why is "no brightness" a good thing? I would have thought "bright" to be a good quality to have. It says to me "easily seen" or "giving out a lot of light". What does "brightness" even mean in this context?

4. What does "taut bass" mean? Again, what do you mean by this in the context? Does this mean that it's easy to pick out the bass notes against more mid frequency sound? Or does it mean there's no excess reverb on the bass? Or something else that I haven't thought of?


March 5, 2010, 7:31 pm

@ Bluepork - second

p.s. please revamp your login system so it is not so laborious to leave a comment


March 5, 2010, 7:31 pm

I don't know whose living room is pictured on page 3 but a sound system like this should have a large TV or projector to match. Putting a TV that high up is almost as big a sin as mounting it above an even larger fireplace!

@bluepork > I'm sure TR will put together some sort of guide one day but until there are numerous websites including the notorious dolby.com that have guides to cinema sound. My limited understanding is:

Tonal Match - all speakers (especially the front three) come from the same manufacturer/range so that sounds sweeping across the soundstage blend naturally and don't sound different across each speaker.

Frequency response - range of frequencies each speaker can emit. The wider the better but obviously subs only need to go up to around 120Hz or often much less.

Brightness - Think of it like excessive dynamic mode on TV screens. Sure its vibrant and colourful but more likely excessively harsh and blinding to the eyes or in this case, ears. Some speakers just emphasise the treble at the expense of even mid to high frequencies.

Taut Bass - The can be very subjective but essentially means a punchy and tight low frequency sound. If it booms and all you hear is the rattling of the speaker then it isn't taut. Movies may not always tell you this so listen to some music with a good beat (house / trance etc.) and each beat should come in and out quickly and distinctly, not mushing into each other.

TR... over to you to fill in the gaps and clarify.


March 5, 2010, 9:29 pm

@bluepork, as per @orinj's comments - TR is a 'Reviews' site, not a tech education site. You will find lot's of other sites on the net that will fill you in on the intricacy's of Home Cinema, just have a search.


March 5, 2010, 11:08 pm

@Orinj - If there was a way to leave thanks for comments, I would leave them for yours above. Thanks for the clear explanations.


March 6, 2010, 6:35 pm

Maybe as a community we can put a guide together...there are PLENTY of people who post on TR that know shed loads about this kind of thing!

If you want to test your own, try playing your favourite action movie (my preferences are Batman Begins, LOTR, Saving Private Ryan), some of your favourite music (I use Hip Hop for bass, Jazz for overall balance) and playing games if you're into that sort of thin (I tried with COD to pick where footsteps/bullet noises etc were in relation to me by ear). This also works well when you're trying to get the sound balance like you want it, just have a play around with the settings until you reach the one that makes you enjoy your favourite movie/album/game the most. After all, there is no point having an amazing system if you don't enjoy the sound yourself...no matter how well balanced it may seem to the reviewer!

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