A Deep Dive Into Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker
The Indiana company is one of the most famous in the audio equipment industry, providing exceptional equipment since 1946. Today, Klipsch loudspeakers are considered to be amongst the very best premium quality speaker systems.
While Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker is not a flagship model, you can be reassured that you will enjoy the same high level of sound quality with these as you would with higher-end Klipsch models. That’s because the company’s philosophy is that every product built and sold should feature the same signature technology, to produce crystal-clear sound.
These bookshelf speakers are no exception. Klipsch has taken the technologies, engineering, and manufacturing processes that have given great results on more expensive models and have found a way to integrate them in a reduced form for a smaller price.
With the R-15M, that’s a sleek, modern designed bookshelf speaker system. Originally released in November 2015, it’s since upgraded compact and lightweight construction houses the brand’s latest audio technologies, in a small footprint that fits conveniently almost anywhere, and at an affordable price.
Who’s It For?
Looking for a compact yet powerful solution to satisfy your inner-audiophile?
Then seriously consider Klipsch’s R-15M Bookshelf Speaker, crafted to provide the right volume and acoustics for small and medium-sized rooms.
Due to its structure, it packs plenty of force and has strong carry across such spaces. In fact, the R-15M is known by enthusiasts as a ‘minimal’ speaker, but not as a negative connotation. It’s referring to the small amount of space it takes up relative to other models while delivering clear sound waves that do not negatively impact walls. Reverberation is typically a non-factor.
Whether its primary purpose is for surround, left, right, or center sound, these bookshelf speakers deliver for the user seeking a balance of crystal-clear audio and affordability. Backed up by a reputable brand name known for impeccable construction, they are an exceptional option if you don’t yet have the means to plump for higher-priced units. Especially if you’re familiar with the unique sound that is as recognizable as the company’s name.
If you’re not, then be sure to try them out before you take the Klipsch plunge. Why? Generally, people either love or hate it; with very few feeling indifferent. That’s because all Klipsch models are the horn speaker type, which contentiously divides the audiophile world.
The anti-lobby, when asked why they dislike horn speakers, often say that they sound ‘shrill and honky’. It goes without saying (but we will!) – be sure to try Klipsch’s R-15M Bookshelf Speaker out before buying. Even if you’re in the pro horn speaker camp. Just like not all box speakers and panel speakers are the same, the same applies to horns. If not more.
Of course, horn speakers do have some recognizable features, and the horn on the R-15M retains many of the good properties of the horn while minimizing the negatives. But they do improve upon some of the issues that the old models had, to be able to bridge the gap between the lovers and the haters?
Has Klipsch engineered a horn speaker with sound that doesn’t just preach to the converted, but can add to those devoted too?
We tried pairs at both home and in our office, using and testing them to be able to give you our verdict.
What We Like About Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker
From its aesthetic design to its audio performance, Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker impresses. We think that these speakers look absolutely amazing. In spite of their relatively low price, there’s still a very premium look and feel to them with the black vinyl finish.
Removing the grille will unveil the ultra-stylish interior, which looks just as good as it sounds. The premium copper spun woofers are not just there for functionality; they brilliantly set off the black brushed polymer casing, which is also practical in being difficult to damage, for an elegantly simple look. Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker easily blends with most home décor, from classical to retro to modern.
With dimensions of 8.2 x 12 inches and weighing just 10 pounds each speaker, it has a narrower and more upright profile than most speakers, enabling it to fit into cramped spaces. The front has the signature Klipsch logo decorating the top and the rear sparkles with its 5.25″ copper-spun IMG woofers. Just pop them into the right space and they’ll blend seamlessly into any background.
Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker will work well in a variety of situations. They can be used as a front, side, and surround speakers. They’re great as part of a home cinema setup. This flexibility makes them perfect for people who want a product that they will be able to repurpose every now and again, or for those looking to buy an affordable, reliable speaker set that can fulfill a larger number of functions.
Their flexibility is enhanced by being a passive speaker, meaning that you can use these speakers however you see fit. They are wonderful as front speakers, but they’ll fit the side and surround positions just as well in a surround system. And their size enables you to install such a system even in a smaller room.
Plus they work great for home cinema setups. And being that they’re passive speakers, you can pair them up with whichever amp you prefer, or attach a subwoofer to them for more powerful bass. This makes them great for people who want a product that they will be able to repurpose every now and again, or for those looking to buy an affordable, reliable speaker set that can fulfill a larger number of functions.
They’re also turntable-ready, so you can listen to vinyl tracks regardless of whether your turntable has a preamp or not. If the latest games rather than old vinyl are your bag, they even make for great desktop speakers thanks to their size. So, if you’re a gamer you can enjoy playing the latest AAA titles in high-end audio. Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker is Bluetooth enabled, so you can easily pair it up with your smartphone or other devices
Featuring a rear-firing port that identically matches the cabinet and drivers, the flared design makes hookups a cinch and minimizes any turbulence. Even while hitting those low frequencies. With up to 5-way binding posts, you get maximum connection versatility of any Klipsch bookshelf speaker system.
But of course, the best and most important aspect of Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker is audio performance. And it doesn’t disappoint. As always with Klipsch speakers, top-quality parts and components have been meticulously combined to create an experience that is immersive and uninterrupted.
And the new 5-1/4″ copper IMG woofer gets a similar treatment as well. The woofer is made from injection-molded graphite, beautifully complementing its spun copper, an upgrade on its older silver version, and the key to minimal frequency response and cone breakup.
Along with the help of the many little tweaks and enhancements, it deals with louder volumes extremely well. It also makes Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker a lot lighter than other bookshelf speakers. Yet they’re still extremely rigid and robust. The result is incredibly low-frequency responses while minimizing any distortion because of the smart cabinet design.
The aluminum linear travel suspension tweeter keeps high notes crystal clear. It’s paired with Klipsch’s proprietary 90×90 Tractrix horn to eliminate any distortion. The horn is widely considered to be the most cutting edge speaker technology available. It helps enhance the top-end, making it livelier and natural-sounding. The tractrix horn also works seamlessly with the woofer to amplify beats without altering or faltering the desired sound range.
Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker is great in the mids as well. Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker hits all of the right notes in the frequency spectrum, without any distortion or disturbance throughout its performance, making sure you get to experience a clear sound quality, even in lower notes.
In fact, the frequency range of Klipsch R-15M is 62-24,000 Hz, which covers almost all the frequencies that the human ear can hear. The audio reproduced is unbelievably clear, but you wouldn’t expect anything less from a product made by Klipsch.
It’s also one of the most efficient speakers that we’ve tested, thanks largely to the horn. This means that it will sound good regardless of which amp you pair it with. Additionally, it copes with loud volumes admirably, without any distortion. And not just the top end of the frequency range, but the bottom as well.
Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker sounds incredibly lifelike. So much so, that listening to live performances on them is an experience that even many more expensive speakers can’t live up to. Like we were during our testing, you’ll be immersed in the energy of a live performance, with all of its soundstage expansiveness.
What We Don’t Like About Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker
For all their flexibility, there is a lack of attachment possibilities, which means there are not many ways to attach the speakers to various surfaces. They can be placed on shelves and other surfaces, and that’s about it. They do not have mounting supports, so they can’t be hung on walls or be attached to ceiling brackets
Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker isn’t designed for large rooms. And as much as their compact size is a huge plus, it does have some implications with regards to the sound.
The mids are a bit thin in comparison to the other frequencies, although can easily be rectified with most amps. But for sure, if you like a bass that’ll make the pit of your stomach rock, you’ll find the R-15M isn’t the speaker for you.
Probably to keep the size to this minimum, there’s no integrated amplifier, like some rival bookshelf speakers. So, they require amplification in order to reach their full potential. This includes sometimes the need to be turned higher than normal for clarity.
Nothing to do with their size, but we found that the driver integration could have been better. You can hear the sound switch between the horn and the woofer, which can be distracting.
Lastly, there’s no escaping that the horn does have some characteristics that no amount of tinkering can eliminate, simply due to its fundamental nature. Going back to what we said at the top; you either love it or you hate it!
- Robust sound not compromised by the lower price tag
- Tractrix horn is dynamic in producing a natural sound
- Creates intense bass for its size
- Can fit just about anywhere
- Light and portable at 10lbs
- One of the speakers failed soon after buying
- Bluetooth quit after two days
- Good while it lasted
You just get the speaker including the detachable grille, a user guide, and a warranty card.
Overview Of Features
Measuring just 8.2 x 7 x 12.5 inches, and weighing 10.3 pounds, Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker delivers power and versatility in a small package.
The brushed black polymer veneer cabinet houses a 5.25″ copper-spun high-output IMG woofer, and features bass reflex via a rear-firing port designed around the drivers in order to minimize turbulence regardless of frequency. The 5-way binding posts offer great flexibility in terms of possible connections that perfectly match the cabinet and drivers.
Although the R-15M is not a flagship product, it still contains Klipsch’s signature important proprietary technology in the form of its 90×90 Tractrix Horn. This offers great response and enhances the imaging and dynamics of the speakers, enabling them to create a natural sound in every situation.
The spun copper injection-molded graphite woofers are lighter than regular ones while remaining extremely rigid. The end result is that they are able to provide a great low-frequency response while also minimizing distortion.
This feature makes the Tractrix Horn-loaded Linear Travel Suspension tweeter the most efficient system in its class. It minimizes cone breakup as well as distortion in order to ensure that the speakers produce clear sound even at lower frequencies.
Sound clarity is 24 kHz, the maximum output power is 340 Watts, with sensitivity 94 dB at 2.83 volts per minute, these speakers perform beautifully as a left, center, right, or surround.
Klipsch R-15M is an excellent all-purpose bookshelf speaker, at an affordable price that you can pair with a variety of devices. However, being relatively small, they do require an amplifier that will take additional space in the room, as well as potentially coin from your pocket.
Manufactured by one of the most famous companies in the industry, Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker delivers great audio performance to smallish rooms. A modestly priced entry-level product, it’s still made from the same quality materials and features the same proprietary technology as the rest of the Klipsch stable. It also rocks the same beautiful and retro signature look.
The brand is famous for the accurate sound that its speakers produce and the R-15M is no exception. The reason for this is that they feature a horn-loaded tweeter, which has become the stand-out feature of Klipsch devices. Audiophiles can easily recognize the Klipsch sound quality echo across the room.
It’s a largely personal preference whether that unmistakable sound is for you. But if it is, the overall package that Klipsch R-15M Bookshelf Speaker offers makes it a great buy.