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Neumann KH120 II Monitor Review

Rate this monitor speaker:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 1 0.3%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 3 0.8%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 34 8.6%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 357 90.4%

  • Total voters
    395

Tonemod

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FiiO BTA30 PRO

This unit allows you to control the volume of the coaxial output. Not an HDMI solution but works great with my Neumann system.
 
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Ellebob

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For a bedroom I would go with the WiiM Pro if using the coax output to the KH120 and get the optional remote to make it easy to control volume. You can also control volume with their app and it does play Apple Music with Airplay. If listening to music you wouldn't have to use the Apple TV and turn the TV on.
The Fiio I don't think has a remote, I could be wrong.
I know the WiiM does attenuate volume on its optical output so I would bet it does it on the coax as well.

The Wiim models have a BF/CM discount through tomorrow.
 

Markus @ Neumann

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Hello,

Did you consider the Bluesound Node which has been recommended somewhere in ASR? It has adjustable coaxial digital out. I recently bought it and use it since.

Best regards,

Markus
 

quattro98

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2 Dec 2023 Update:
The Apple Music app on the Mac actually does provide volume control, but it isn't practically usable to connect via a USB to Coax bridge. The overall volume is way too high and you can only use the bottom 10% of the volume slider.

Here's the current setup:
1) Mac to SMSL PO100 Pro via USB cable.
2) SMSL PO100 Pro to Bluesound Node via Toslink cable.
3) Bluesound Node to Neumann KH120 II (KH 750 is still boxed up) via coaxial cable. This allows for easy Airplay use and direct playback from the Mac as well for Lossless playback. I don't love the touch volume control, but it works. I might get an IR remote.

New Edit: To be complete, if one didn't want a separate AirPlay solution for ease of use, connecting the speakers to a Mac along with software from https://rogueamoeba.com/ would allow for volume control and even AirPlay-like functionality on older Macs like mine (newer ones have AirPlay Receiver).

=======
1 Dec 2023 Update:
The below did not work. I assumed that I'd have volume control from the Mac, but that was not the case so the simple USB to Coax digital bridge of the AMB DAC wasn't sufficient, I'll need a digital volume control. Additionally, the AMB converts USB input to Toslink or Coaxial output. It does not output from the Toslink or Coaxial S/PDIF from a Toslink or Coaxial input. I was hoping to get a basic setup running with pieces I already had at home.
=======
Thanks for the suggestion. I hadn't considered the Bluesound Node. If the USB input worked with a computer, then it would be ideal. I'll continue to look into it.

My desk is in the bedroom, so I decided that I will use the Neumann system for my computer which gives me a second high quality system (multichannel KEF system is in the works in the living room). We don't want a TV in the bedroom, so not using an AppleTV is ideal. I also want to have the speakers available for Airplay use for integration into a multichannel system. I think I have a plan as follows (my Mac doesn't have Airplay receiver so, I will try that when I get a new computer):

1) Mac to AMB gamma2 DAC via USB cable (Apple Lossless for dedicated listening).
2) AirPort Express to gamma2 via optical cable (AirPlay for general use).
3) Coaxial cable to KH750.

The AMB allows for easy switching between multiple inputs. It should work, but both of those devices are old and haven't been used in years, so I'll have to try it all and see if everything still works. If not, then I'll look at other setups.

Hello,

Did you consider the Bluesound Node which has been recommended somewhere in ASR? It has adjustable coaxial digital out. I recently bought it and use it since.

Best regards,

Markus
 
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jhaider

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Hello,

Did you consider the Bluesound Node which has been recommended somewhere in ASR? It has adjustable coaxial digital out. I recently bought it and use it since.

Best regards,

Markus
@sweetchaos - As ASR official keeper of the charts, it might be interesting to have a list of devices with variable digital outputs with output format (Toslink, coax, AES, AirPlay, etc.), and a special flag for physical volume knob. I have no idea how common that might be.

Two others that can be added to the lis are RME ADI-2 Pro (Tos/coax/AES, volume knob) and Yamaha WXC-50 (Tos/coax, volume knob.)
 

sweetchaos

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Thanks for the kind words. :D

I'm barely keeping my head above the water here, with my own tables/lists and spreadsheets. o_O

If someone is passionate enough, they can create a simple table/list, by creating a new thread, and then update the main post with new information as times goes on. I created dozens of these posts. It's fairly easy to maintain, once it's setup.

If you have a large enough dataset, then you can create a Google Spreadsheet, like I did with "Subwoofer Comparison". It takes more effort upfront, of course. But the benefits are massive, since you can filter very easily and Spreadsheet solves the scalability problem that's inherent with creating simple tables/lists inside forums.

Either way, I can assist someone, if they have questions regarding doing either methods. :)
 
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Wavez

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Ok, I bought them from MusicStore the german dealer.
  • I called sennheiser USA (Neumann's parent brand) and verified that the warranty will in fact be honored, it applies internationally as long as they are an authorized dealer
  • This import calculator says there will be no fees on this product category (but I'm not sure it's correct) https://www.simplyduty.com/import-calculator/
I'll report back with shipping progress and if I get charged customs on arrival.
Did I mention the MA-1 measurement mic is included for free on the holiday promo they're running? (From many dealers right now fwiw)
The speakers arrived today, so just about 2 weeks transit, not bad. They were shipped DHL but delivered via USPS. No signature was required for delivery but luckily I was home.

No customs charge!
 

RDoc

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The speakers arrived today, so just about 2 weeks transit, not bad. They were shipped DHL but delivered via USPS. No signature was required for delivery but luckily I was home.

No customs charge!
I'm still waiting for them to get back in stock.
 

formdissolve

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Has anyone ever noticed one of the speakers dropping a SPDIF connection for a second or two when daisy chained?
 

LuminousMoth

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WOW! just wow! I just got them and my first impression was how dead center the phantom image was, then the bass note hit and I literally shed a tear.. impressive bass for such a small speaker, and to think I haven't even done the MA1 calibration yet. These will pass down to my children as my prized possession.
 
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LuminousMoth

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Does this model have the DSP for room EQ?
it does! and if you act fast they are currently running a promotion where they give the MA1 calibration mic for free if you purchase a pair of the new KH 120 ii or the KH 150.
 

LuminousMoth

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This is just outrageously good. It's as good as it gets for me. I would PEQ that to death with my ears' freq response but at least I would know I have the best speaker.
index.php
it really is as good as it gets!! thankfully my ears appreciate the flatness to its fullest so I don't have to do a thing ;) This is a steal for the price!
 

quattro98

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I've been thrilled with the KH120 II & KH750 since getting them. I finally had a chance to calibrate them with the MA1. I put in a Harman curve using the EQ as suggested here, with some minor tweaks (Post in thread 'Looking for post Neumann MA-1 auto alignment adjustment recommendations'
https://audiosciencereview.com/foru...adjustment-recommendations.49629/post-1781489). I've always wanted a nice second system and have been using my desktop computer more than before.

Just updated the system with cables that had been on order. These are beautifully made with Canare LV-61S & matching connectors & strain relief boots. Massive overkill, but just plain nice.

 
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Grobi

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KH120ii and KH750 are on the way. Can you guys recommend a good streamer? I need eARC to adjust the volume with the TV remote too. I only found the Bluesound Node n130 as a fitting candidate. Any other recommendations? I do not want to use an external dac - of course not the one of the node.

And excuse this question: which cables do I need to connect everything digital? I use a Topping Dac with analog outs atm.
 

quattro98

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I ended up with the Node because of the physical controls with presets and the availability of eARC. For cables, you can use coaxial cables between each device (Node to sub, sub to speaker 1, speaker 1 to speaker 2). The sub uses BNC connectors, while the Node & speakers use RCA connectors. Standard RCA cables are fine with BNC to RCA adapters. I used the Laird cables in my post above with RCA to BNC connectors, Blue Jeans makes similar cables.

There are lots of similar options on Amazon.




KH120ii and KH750 are on the way. Can you guys recommend a good streamer? I need eARC to adjust the volume with the TV remote too. I only found the Bluesound Node n130 as a fitting candidate. Any other recommendations? I do not want to use an external dac - of course not the one of the node.

And excuse this question: which cables do I need to connect everything digital? I use a Topping Dac with analog outs atm.
 
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Ellebob

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Arylic BP50. Haven't used it but if kept in digital domain should be fine.
 
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RDoc

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Our 120 II speakers just got here from the German MusicStore.com. It took 3 weeks once they got back in stock in Germany although that was over Christmas, so probably less time normally. There was no customs tax and it took about 2 days to get through customs then 8 days USPS to delivery once landed in NYC. The only downside is that they came with cords with German plugs. Fortunately I had some old US cords from dead computers that work.

These are upgrades from existing KH 80s used as main left/right far field (~3m) speakers in a largish room in a 5.1 system. Subjectively they sound a bit cleaner than the KH 80's but I wouldn't say it was a very significant difference. We just got these today though and I've not gone about re-equalizing everything yet. I did notice one significant thing though. With the KH 80's some piano notes sounded quite harsh. I particularly noticed this on The Arabesque album by Thibaudet at about 36 sec into the Clair de Lune track on the speakers but not on good headphones. The 120 ii speakers seem to have tamed it although that album is bordering on harshness a lot. It seems piano music is really hard to get right.
 
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