Our VerdictMany will choose the Marshall Acton II Voice because of its charming looks, but…
Best Marshall Kilburn Black Friday Sales 2020
Marhsall offers no shortage of Bluetooth speakers, and at $299.99, the Kilburn II fits somewhere among the Stockwell II and the Tufton regarding both price and size. Even for a mid-size model, the Kilburn II is lightweight in the sense that you could make it by its strap, but it’s overweight and bulky to, say, throw in a backpack. The glad tidings are that it could deliver some serious power because of its size, and adjustable bass and treble knobs let you alter its sound signature to fit your tastes. There is nothing glaringly wrong with the Marshall Kilburn II, but its price feels rather high for what it provides.
The boxy Kilburn II comes in black or gray faux leather. It measures 6.5 by 9.6 by 5.5 inches (HWD) and weighs 5.5 pounds, therefore the removable strap is effective for transporting it around. In addition, it happens to look quite nice, such as a classic guitar strap with a velvet-lined underside.
Leading face of the Kilburn II is all metallic grille, emblazoned with the script Marshall logo. Behind the grille, dual 8-watt tweeters and an individual 20-watt woofer generate a frequency selection of 52Hz to 20kHz.
There are three knobs along the most notable panel, one for power/volume: one for bass, and one for treble. There are no track navigation controls. The panel also houses a battery life LED and a Bluetooth pairing button. A covered port on the trunk panel houses the bond for the energy cable, and there’s an uncovered 3.5mm aux input. The trunk panel also houses a port for air moved by the drivers to flee through.
The Kilburn II’s IPX2 water-resistance rating isn’t impressive. All this means is that the speaker is protected from dripping water while held at hook angle. So that it can withstand an extremely light sprinkle, but avoid this speaker poolside or out in the torrential rain, as that is about only IP ratings get.
There is no speakerphone functionality, and having less a 3.5mm aux input cable appears like an omission as of this price.
Marshall estimates the Kilburn II’s battery life to be roughly 20 hours, however your results will vary together with your volume levels.
On tracks with strong sub-bass content, just like the Knife’s “Silent Shout,” the Kilburn II gives powerful bass depth because of its size. The bass knob could be maxed out, in addition to the volume knob, without the distortion occurring-though this is simply not how it sounds best, and distortion or not, there is some rattling of the speaker’s enclosure that may commence to occur at these high volumes on deep bass tracks. Indeed, the bass makes the drivers work so difficult, the trunk port of the speaker acts almost such as a bellows. At more sensible volumes, with the bass and treble set to the center position, the Kilburn II offers a palpable thump upon this track, balanced out by bright high-frequency presence.
Bill Callahan’s “Drover,” a track with much less deep bass in the mix, gives us an improved sense of the Kilburn II’s general sound signature. The drums upon this track can sound thunderous on bass-forward systems, but here they sound restrained. Instead, it’s Callahan’s baritone vocals that seem to be to get the almost all the bass depth-there’s a robust richness in the lows and low-mids, however the sub-bass that could push the drums forward is not actually present here. The bigger frequency occurrence is bright and crisp, lending extra definition to the track, specially the classical guitar strums and the bigger register percussive hits.
On Jay-Z and Kanye West’s “No Church in the open,” the kick drum loop receives ideal high-mid presence, allowing its attack to retain its punchy occurrence in this mix. The sub-bass synth hits, however, are dialed back-we get more bass push from the drum loop and less from the sub-bass sounds that punctuate the beat. The vocals upon this track are delivered cleanly and clearly, though you will find a touch of added sibilance occasionally.
Orchestral tracks, just like the opening scene from John Adams’ The Gospel In line with the Other Mary, have a bright, rich delivery through the Kilburn II. The low register instrumentation packs some extra body and depth, particularly if you dial the bass knob up-it never sounds ridiculously boosted, generally for the reason that highs are so well-represented. Turning the treble knob completely up takes what to an insanely bright level. As always, we recommend dialing both knobs back again to the center (in the event that you decide to utilize them at all) and adjusting to taste from there.
The Marshall Kilburn II packs impressively powerful audio tracks performance in its size. The purchase price feels high, though: Ultimately, this is simply not what we expect a $300 speaker to appear to be. There may be more sub-bass, for sure-the lows cut out before there’s any semblance of subwoofer-like output. In this cost range, we’re fans of Marhsall’s own Stanmore II Voice-it brings more features and capacity to the table. For less, the Urbanears Ralis, the Denon Envaya DSB-250BT, and the JBL Charge 4 are also solid options. For $300, we want either more bass depth or an outdoor-friendly, rugged design.