Back in August 2018, Kali Audio – a new company founded in Southern California by former JBL insiders – debuted its Lone Pine studio monitors. Starting at USD 150 for the 6.5-inch model, they offer very nice specs and features for the budget, by most accounts. One likely won’t expect any less from the people behind JBL’s fantastic 3 and 7-series professional studio monitors.
Now, Kali Audio is moving onto the next price segment with the newly announced Project Independence speakers. First to arrive is the IN-8, which is a 3-way design with co-axial mid-range and tweeter for what the company calls “hyper-realistic” imaging. As explained on the product page, the tweeter and midrange share an acoustic center, and the woofer is crossed over at 330Hz. This is to let the IN-8 deliver the directivity of an acoustic point source in a full 360 degrees around the speaker and all the spatial information in a mix is being heard at the listening position.
The speaker uses the same tweeter and woofer like the LP-8, but the midrange driver surrounds the tweeter to act as a waveguide. This way, the tweeter and woofer can function more efficiently and reproduce sounds with less distortion. The design also eliminates off-axis lobing for a more detailed sound stage. The low noise port tube is engineered using airflow simulations to deliver powerful bass without port noise.
Where specs are concerned, the IN-8 offers 140W Class-D amplification, low frequency extension down to 37Hz, upper frequency extension at 21kHz, and 114dB max SPL. Features include boundary compensation EQ settings, RCA input, TRS input, XLR input, and LF/HF trims. The RCA input can be set to -10dBu sensitivity for direct connection to consumer devices with headphone jacks.
Price and availability
The IN-8 is up for pre-order, priced USD 399 per speaker. There’s clearly a lot of thought behind these monitors, and the price seems reasonable. Perhaps hearing these speakers in person will prove even more convincing than the brand’s credibility and presentation.