Today, we’ll be reviewing the Kali Audio LP-8 V2 (2nd Wave) monitors.
The original LP-8s were exceedingly popular, so let’s see if the new installments of the LP line hold up to their reputation.
Our verdict on the Kali LP-8 V2
For those of you who were fans of the original LP-8, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to find that Kali has upgraded the monitor’s performance without sacrificing what made the first installment so great.
This time around, the monitors have little to no distortion, and all of the harshness and brittleness of the high-end has all but been taken away.
Power and frequency response
The Kali Audio LP-8 V2s have a frequency response of 39 Hz – 25 kHz and an SPL of 117 dB.
Tonally, these speakers are very similar to their predecessors, although Kali Audio has made some key improvements to the overall design.
For starters, they’ve bolstered the monitors with a Class D amp module, allowing for the monitors to have about 12 dB less of self noise, as well as increasing the input sensitivity by 3 dB.
In layman terms, these speakers are far cleaner sounding than the originals. Significant improvements have been made to the high-end as well, which is far more accurate and smooth.
Some may still find these speakers to be a bit clinical sounding, but we view this as a positive. They aren’t particularly colored in any way, and now that the self noise and harshness on the top-end has been improved – there isn’t much to complain about.
There is a bit of resonance somewhere between the 500 Hz – 1 kHz region, which can add some ‘chestiness’ to what you’re hearing, but some simple parametric EQ can easily resolve this.
The design is very tasteful, and the speakers feel very solid despite being fairly lightweight.
They are front ported, allowing them to be placed close to the wall without affecting the sound of the monitors.
I/O and controls
On the rear panel, you will find your standard IEC socket, an On/Off switch, an XLR-in, a TRS-in, RCA-in, and a volume control knob.
There are also boundary EQ tunings, that allow you to adjust the monitor’s EQ for being placed on a stand, desk, etc.
There’s also new boundary EQ tuning for 2nd Wave, which allows you to place them on a desk that has built-in speaker stands.
Compared to other studio monitors
While the LP-8 V2 may be perfect for you, here are some alternatives to consider in comparison.
Kali Audio LP-8 V2 vs. Yamaha HS8
If you’re in the market for a monitor pair with a flat response and full-bodied low end, the LP-8 is the superior choice here.
The Yamaha’s are notoriously bright, and have an exaggerated mid-range which will stand as an obstacle in the face of a neutral sound reproduction.
Kali Audio LP-8 V2 vs. Kali Audio LP-6 V2
The LP-6s are just as good as the LP-8s, and are better suited for those of you with a smaller setup and/or recording space.
You can’t go wrong with either, but it’s important to consider which would work better for you.
Check out our Kali Audio LP-6 V2 review (coming soon)
Kali Audio LP-8 V2 vs. KRK Rokit 5 G4
While the KRK Rokits have a hefty bottom-end that can serve well for artists working in EDM, Hip-Hop, or contemporary pop – they’re severely colored.
If you want a more accurate monitoring experience, we recommend you go with the LP-8s.
For more great options in the price range, check out our picks for the best studio monitors under $500/pair.
Who are the Kali LP-8 V2s best suited for?
The Kali Audio LP-8 V2s are perfect for engineers looking for an accurate set of mid-range budget monitors.
While there are other options available to you, the Kalis might be the best deal for their price and performance.
- No more self noise.
- Smoother high end.
- Slight peak in the mid-range.