KEF Q150 vs. MartinLogan Motion 15i

KEF Q150 Bookshelf Speakers MartinLogan Motion 15i Bookshelf Speaker
$600 $900
Dimensions (H × W × D)
11.92” × 7.08” × 10.94”
303mm × 180mm × 278mm
11.40” × 6.80” × 9.50”
290mm × 173mm × 241mm
Power Type
Passive Passive
Frequency Response
51-28,000 Hz 60-25,000 Hz
ASR Score
4.8 n/a
ASR Score w/Subwoofer
6.9 n/a

Key Takeaways

TLDR Summary: In the arena of audiophile bookshelf speakers, the KEF Q150 and MartinLogan Motion 15i exemplify sonic finesse. The Q150 impresses with its Uni-Q driver, delivering a seamless soundstage and cohesive imaging, ideal for listeners seeking a balanced, room-filling experience. Conversely, the Motion 15i shines with its lightning-fast Folded Motion tweeter, offering exquisite detail and a slightly forward presentation that engages critical listeners. While the KEF suits those favoring warmth and wide dispersion, the MartinLogan caters to enthusiasts craving crisp highs and articulate dynamics. Both speakers command respect, but your preference may hinge on your taste for sonic subtleties.

Speaker Comparison

The audiophile's journey to sonic nirvana is often a path of relentless comparison, a quest to squeeze out every decibel of performance from the compact form of a bookshelf speaker. Today, we set our sights on two remarkable contenders in the race for acoustic perfection. The KEF Q150 and the MartinLogan Motion 15i are both exceptional, yet they cater to different ears and different sensibilities within the realm of high-fidelity audio.

The Essence of KEF Q150

Let's begin with the KEF Q150, the successor to the revered Q100. The Q150 stands out with its iconic Uni-Q driver array, which positions the tweeter in the acoustic center of the midrange cone. This unique design is not just a visual treat but an auditory marvel, ensuring a more detailed and integrated three-dimensional soundstage. The 5.25-inch driver, coupled with the Q150's redesigned cabinet, brings a level of clarity and depth that is quite simply arresting, particularly in small to medium-sized rooms where their performance can truly shine.

KEF Q150 Bookshelf Speakers
KEF Q150 arrow (at

Exploring MartinLogan Motion 15i

On the other side of our sonic duel, the MartinLogan Motion 15i brandishes its own set of high-tech weaponry. The Motion 15i boasts the company's signature Folded Motion tweeter, a clever piece of engineering that delivers astoundingly quick transient response and a seamlessly transparent treble that seems to breathe life into vocals and instruments alike. Though the Motion 15i employs a traditional 5.25-inch aluminum cone midrange driver, its performance is anything but ordinary, displaying an articulate bass and a midrange that exudes warmth and richness.

Design and Build Quality

In terms of design, KEF's Q150 exhibits a minimalist aesthetic with its clean lines and smooth vinyl finish, allowing it to blend unassumingly into a variety of decors. The Q150's build quality is solid, with a reassuring weight and a sturdy feel that belies its price point. The MartinLogan Motion 15i, however, leans towards a more luxurious and distinctive visual appeal. Its high-gloss finish and the visually striking Folded Motion tweeter give it a sense of refinement that would make it a statement piece in any audiophile's setup. The build is equally robust, with fine attention to detail and craftsmanship that MartinLogan is known for.

MartinLogan Motion 15i Bookshelf Speaker
MartinLogan Motion 15i arrow (at

Sound Characteristics

The listening experience with the KEF Q150 can be characterized as precise and balanced. KEF's Uni-Q driver delivers a uniform sound dispersion that makes for an expansive sweet spot, allowing listeners to enjoy consistent sound quality throughout the room. The sound signature is neutral, with a slight emphasis on the midrange, making the Q150's performance both versatile and engaging across a variety of genres. Conversely, the MartinLogan Motion 15i leans towards a more dynamic presentation. The highs are crystal clear without becoming fatiguing, and the bass, though not overpowering, is tight and well-defined. The Motion 15i excels in delivering a palpable sense of space and air around each instrument, a quality that can be quite enchanting for discerning ears.

When it comes to power handling, both speakers perform admirably within their respective capabilities. The KEF Q150 is comfortable with modest amplifiers, its efficiency allowing it to sing even with less power. The MartinLogan Motion 15i, while also not particularly power-hungry, does appreciate a bit more juice to truly unlock its potential, particularly in larger rooms where its soundstage can fully unfurl.

Ultimately, the choice between the KEF Q150 and the MartinLogan Motion 15i may well come down to personal preference and the specific demands of one's listening space. The KEF Q150 is a champion of coherence and balance, a speaker that does many things well and could be the ideal choice for the listener in search of an all-rounder. The MartinLogan Motion 15i, with its articulate and spacious sound, might appeal more to the audiophile with a penchant for vocal and instrumental detail, a speaker that invites you to a front-row seat at the performance. In both cases, listeners are bound to be delighted as each model brings its own brand of aural magic to the table.

Check Current Prices:

KEF Q150 Bookshelf Speakers
KEF Q150 Bookshelf Speakers
MartinLogan Motion 15i Bookshelf Speaker
MartinLogan Motion 15i Bookshelf Speaker

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Disclaimer: the speaker data listed on this website are correct to the best of our knowledge, but we do not guarantee the accuracy of the data. Please double-check any measurements with the manufacturer before making a final purchasing decision.