The Linn Kiko speakers use cabinets of extruded aluminium, making their closest relatives the Linn Komponent surround speakers, which have now been discontinued. Aluminium cabinets let speakers produce sound of great depth and clarity without using masses of space. The Linn Kiko speakers' volume is a mere 4 litres a piece.
Underneath the non-removable grilles that cover every part of the speaker not armoured with aluminium there are mid-range and tweeter drivers. Each driver has its own amplifier section that lives within the main unit.
There are naturally going to be some unavoidable limitations in a small-enclosure stereo system. If you want thunderous, wall-shaking bass to accompany your action film Blu-rays, you're in the wrong place. And if you listen exclusively to dance music, you may not get on all that well with the Kiko sound signature.
However, if you're looking for something a little more grown-up, the Linn Kiko is absolutely the ticket. The low-end and highest treble frequencies are relatively reserved, but the mid-range is superbly articulate and the system provides the Kiko with the high fidelity sound we expect of the brand.
It won't replicate the sub-bass thrills that some less refined wood-cabinet speakers can create, but the extent to which the Linn Kiko can relay the texture of vocals and other mid-heavy instruments like violins is highly impressive.
It's not a term we use all that often, but the Kiko is particularly adept at relaying the emotion of music. Lovers of classical and orchestral music will, well, love it. In this respect the Linn Kiko sound meshes perfectly with the system's design.
That said, other less polite genres do sound great through the system too. Bass is not voluminous or particularly deep, but it is taut and punchy. And while there is a slight darkness to the treble end, it's well resolved, natural-sounding and beautifully detailed.
There's no doubt you do pay a little extra to buy a stylish-looking system from a British name with the Linn Kiko. It's not cheap, and thanks to its lack of system expandability it's certainly not for everyone. However, it's a well-designed wireless system that can fit into the average lounge far better than most. It'll play with your two year-old Blu-ray player just fine - heck it'll even get on with the Marantz CD player from 1998 that you can't bear to part with.
The Linn Kiko is a classy wireless system from a high-end hi-fi pro that normally produces systems many times the price of this one. It blends wireless streaming with good old cabled connections to blend easily into just about any lounge, making it more accessible than many pure wireless systems. There are naturally some things to note with a small-cabinet, small driver stereo system like this - mainly that it's not perfectly suited to movies. But if you value refinement over roaring bass, it's a top choice.