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Klipsch Reference RF-42 II

Floor-standing speaker

13 Reviews | 5 questions - 16 answers

Item # 714RF42IIB

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Our take on the Klipsch Reference RF-42 II

Klipsch's most affordable Reference floor-standing speaker
Even though the RF-42 II is the smallest tower speaker in the new Klispch® Reference Series II lineup, it still makes the most of today's demanding music and movie soundtracks. This slim floor-standing speaker is ideal for small- to medium-sized rooms, and it produces powerful, lifelike sound with any audio source. Building on Klipsch's previous Reference speaker line, the Series II models have updated drivers and a new crossover system for even more spacious sound.

Klipsch's most affordable Reference floor-standing speaker
Even though the RF-42 II is the smallest tower speaker in the new Klispch® Reference Series II lineup, it still makes the most of today's demanding music and movie soundtracks. This slim floor-standing speaker is ideal for small- to medium-sized rooms, and it produces powerful, lifelike sound with any audio source. Building on Klipsch's previous Reference speaker line, the Series II models have updated drivers and a new crossover system for even more spacious sound.

Horn technology for "front row" sound
All Reference Series II speakers feature a redesigned version of Klipsch's famous horn-loaded tweeter. Because high-frequency sounds are more directional than bass frequencies, it's especially important to target them right toward your ears. Klipsch places their titanium tweeter inside a flared opening, known as a "horn," which disperses the highs evenly across your listening area in a 90°-wide, 60°-high pattern. With their Series II speakers, Klipsch has redesigned the shape and slope of their famous horn enclosure, so your movie soundtracks and music will sound more "open," with improved dynamics and efficiency. All in all, you can count on powerful, "front row" sound that's crystal-clear at all volume levels.

High-tech driver design
The RF-42 II also uses newly machined, light-yet-rigid Cerametallic woofers with a folded edge to produce smoother mids and tighter bass. The specially treated aluminum in the cones helps to dampen unwanted vibrations and reduce distortion, while integrated dustcaps add stability. The RF-42 II also has dual five-way binding posts, giving you the option to bi-amp or bi-wire this speaker for even better performance. And the rigid, braced cabinet comes in a handsome woodgrain vinyl finish.

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Check out the rest of our Klipsch lineup, and build a complete Reference Series II home theater or stereo speaker system. And don't forget to add a Klipsch subwoofer for high-impact bass.

Product Highlights:

  • frequency response 59-24,000 Hz (±3dB)
  • power handling: up to 75 watts RMS (300 watts peak)
  • sensitivity 95 dB
  • 8-ohm impedance
  • Tractrix® horn with 1" titanium dome tweeter
  • dual 4-1/2" Cerametallic™ woofers
  • bass-reflex (ported) design
  • black ash woodgrain vinyl finish
  • dual binding posts for bi-amping or bi-wiring
  • 10-1/16"W x 34-3/4"H x 9-3/4"D
  • warranty: 5 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • Black floorstanding loudspeaker
  • Removable grille
  • 2 Stabilizer feet
  • 4 Carpet spikes
  • 2 Self-tapping screws
  • 2 Machine screws
  • Owner's Manual
  • Unpacking instructions

5.0 I would highly recommend this product!! great product, great sound quality.

Jonathan, Aguadilla Puerto Rico


Klipsch Reference RF-42 II Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(13 Reviews)

Great Sound

Jonathan from Aguadilla Puerto Rico on 5/27/2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

5.0 I would highly recommend this product!! great product, great sound quality.




Jamie from Georgia on 3/26/2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I ordered these speakers for a room that is 14x19 as part of a 3.1 set up. The speakers came in without incident and looked great. In installed the feet which needed room for improvement. There is one wood screw and one machine screw that is used per foot (2). When installing the wood screw it broke off. I would suggest either putting some sort of wax type lube on the screw before installing it or picking up a higher quality pack of screws from a hardware store. The machine screw gave me no issues. After getting these set up the sound WITH a subwoofer is pretty good for my size of room. Without the aid of a subwoofer they likely would sound just fine in a smaller room. Sound is crisp and detailed when hooked up to my Denon AVR-X2100. They play very loud and are especially fantastic for movies. In the end I ended up exchanging these for a set of RF-62II's to better accommodate my larger room. I gave them 4 stars because of the lack of bass as a stand alone. In a smaller room these may earn a 5 star rating.

Pros: Crisp detailed sound Overall built very well

Cons: Poor quality wood screws for installing feet. Easily remedied though.

Ed 42 ii

BW from Alpharetta, GA on 12/25/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

These speakers sound fantastic with my denon avr 1913, and a rf 8" sub. The cabinet is a touch slim, making the speakers a bit wobbly on the carpet. I have found since I bought the speaker that the bi-amp option is pointless, and won't work with my amp even though the amp has a bi-amp option. That was disappointing. I'm pushing a 20 more ways to the speaker than klipsch suggests. I've had no problems thus far.

Pros: Sound size weight

Cons: Width, bi-amP is pointless

Great Apartment Speakers

MJB from DC Metro on 12/16/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Just got them out of the box tonight. I suspect they'll require a little break in time to sound their best but satisfied so far. Previously tried the PSB Alpha T1s which might have the upper hand for sound quality when listening to lighter fare but it took a bit of power to get them to open up and I'm more into reggae and rock type music. These just sound more "there". Running a couple year old Onkyo 50x2 receiver in a 13x16 foot living room. I wanted something that sounded dynamic without simultaneously creating thunderous bass which would be rude living in an apartment. These will still be able to PO the neighbors if I'm so inclined but also provide a nice listening experience at moderate levels. Looking forward to trying them out w/ a vintage marantz I have. If you're craving crazy bass keep looking but don't be fooled by the 4.5" woofers, they get it done.

Pros: Great speaker for apartment living, perhaps too much if your building is wood frame, ours is poured concrete. Magnetic fastening grills are cool.

Cons: You could get alot more thunder at this price point (or by stepping up to the rf52/62s) but that's not what I'm after.

Great speakers!

Anonymous from las vegas, Nv on 4/30/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I've never owned Klipsch speakers before, but I have family and friends that do. So I went to them for advice and they didn't steer me wrong! So I decided to get these speakers. They were delivered on time and in great shape. They were very simple to install and the directions were very user friendly! They are great looking speaker's and fit in with my living room decor. It was time to power these speakers up. To say the least...I was floored and amazed at the sound! Definitely worth the money and so simple to hook up. I played several movies in HD with optical for my sound and couldn't believe how great the sound was. My previous speakers were Polk audio RM 85's. Not great speakers, but did the job for my needs. After hooking up these Klipsch though...definite difference in clarity and crispness in the sound. My son who frequently goes to the movies...said it sounded no different than the movie theater. I would recommend you use these with a powered sub. Overall...great sound that you will definitely notice and appreciate!

Pros: Easy intall, Great sound, Great looking speaker

Cons: None...

Great Speakers

Roy from Wichita, Ks on 4/19/2014

These speakers sound awesome, powered by my Yamaha R-S500 receiver/amp, which is rated at the same RMS/channel output as these speakers are designed for. The only reason I'm not giving 5 stars, is because the Vinyl veneer looks like vinyl, and on close inspection, the vinyl has some wrinkling on a couple of the corners. It wouldn't be noticeable to most, but it bothers me all the same. The bass is impressive for the woofer size. I mostly use these for two-channel stereo music, and I don't feel the need to add a subwoofer. In fact, adding a subwoofer with these for music listening would probably throw off the balance with excessive bass, unless you're using these speaks in a large room.

Pros: Great sound and size. High bang for buck value. Cabinets have nice feet.

Cons: Workmanship on the finish could be improved.

Fantastic set up

Jon from Minnesota on 4/2/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I finally pulled the trigger and upgraded from my "Home theater in a box" After some extensive research I went with this combo: Onkyo TX-NR626 Klipsch r 1800-C Klipsch rc 42 II Klipsch rf 42 II Klipsch rw 12 II I have nothing but good things about this set up. I have a smaller theater room (13x16) from casual TV watching to high volume action movies the quality of sound is truly fantastic. Setup was a breeze including mounting the R-1800-C's in the ceiling, I think it took me longer to get in and out of the attic than it did to actually install the speakers.



Very nice!!

Giankarlo L. from San Juan, PR on 2/20/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Some people say that this speakers are not so great, but trust me it is!! I have this rf42 with a rc42 and it play very louder and super cristal clear sound. I know that the frequency responce its 59 the lowest but with a great sub you will not have any problems. It replace my infinity Beta 50, this are much much crisp sound than the Beta 50. My room its 11'x11'

Pros: Great price for sound, crisp sound.

Cons: Nothing.

Just Ok

Multiple Klipsch Owner from San Diego on 1/30/2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Ordered the rf-52 and my wife(classical musician) thought they were too big so I also got the rf-42. Played them side by side with her and sent the rf-42 back. There is no comparison. The 52 sounds so much better.

Pros: Cheap

Cons: Sound clarity

Rock solid and great sound

Anonymous from Williamsburg, Va on 12/30/2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I have these running a dedicated home theater room, 5.1 with the SW-110 Sub and these sound great, whether it's music or movies, the sound is clear and turning it up really loud with no distortion is something you have to hear to believe. Beautifully made, really solid build quality and they look great. Would highly recommend.



Outstanding sound

Brian from Blue Springs, MO on 2/24/2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

If you like crystal clear sound and have a high end receiver than these are a must have for your set up , they will put out what ever your system can give them . Will not be disappointed with sound . These speakers will complement your system nicely .

Pros: Sound , design of tower , affordability

Cons: None !!!!!

Love these Klipsch speakers

Brenda from Southside, Virginia on 2/20/2011

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

After noticing unusually boomy bass tones and then finding the rubber seals falling off the 10" woofers of our 20 yr. old Infinity 112 studio monitors, my husband decided to replace them. He ordered some Klipsch RF-42 II's via internet in the middle of the night then became concerned that we hadn't gone "big" enough to replace the awesome bass from the Infinitys. At 8 am Crutchfield advisor Bill reassured him about the RF-42's and their compatibility with our Yamaha receiver [95 watts RMS]. They arrived the next day, we hooked 'em up and WOW! Experimenting with different sound fields produced some amazing results. Running 7 channel enhanced thru a 5.1 speaker setup sounded great and the 2 channel stereo mode without the powered subwoofer proved that these speakers have the bass. The Tratrix horn tweeters are outstanding. Our listening room is 15' X 30' and these thin tower models fill it up nicely. We will be adding a Klipsch RC-42 II center channel.



Amazing Speakers. Bottom Line.

Burninrock24 from Minneapolis, Minnesota on 11/26/2010

I recently picked up two these floor standing speakers to take the place of my Left and Right for my home theater. My first impressions were positive as they were nicely packaged and protected in their factory box. Also another thing I was not completely expecting was the size. They were much smaller than expected. I am 6' 0" and they come up to my hip. (just for a comparison). After un-boxing these I hooked them up and listened to them in stereo. Immediately I was introduced to a realm of sound my previous speakers could not produce. The bass was fast and responsive but also low and moving. I could hear the bass from the strum of an acoustic guitar and the bellows of a timpani. Something I was not expecting to hear from speakers of such size. Only the very low bass couldn't be produced, but even then, there was no distortion or port noise. The mids were soft and supple and crossed over from the lows and into the highs beautifully. The highs were incredibly crisp also. No matter what I threw at these speakers, they handled it admirably. I know that the above paragraph sounds like something straight out of a marketing campaign. But I don't know how else to put it, these speakers really are exponentially better than anything in this price range.




Hands-on research

Features and Specs

Enclosure Bass Reflex
Finish Woodgrain vinyl
Color Black Ash
Tweeter Traxtrix Horn
Tweeter Size (inches) 1
Midrange Size (inches) ---
Woofer Size (inches) 4.5
Woofer Composition Cerametallic
Woofer Surround Rubber
Built-in Powered Sub No
Video-Shielded No
Connector Type Binding Post
Bi-amp Inputs Yes
Parts Warranty 5 Years
Labor Warranty 5 Years
Power Range 75
Frequency Response 59-24k Hz
Sensitivity 95 dB
Impedance (Ohms) 8
Amplifier Power ---
Height (inches) 34-3/4
Width (inches) 10-1/16
Depth (inches) 9-3/4
Weight 27.1 lbs

Product Research

Overview: The Klipsch Reference Series RF-42 II floor-standing loudspeaker delivers high-performance sound using Klipsch's advanced technologies and world-class materials. The Klipsch Reference RF-42 II employs dual 4.5-inch woofers and a 1.0-inch titanium diaphragm compression driver loaded with a square Tractrix Horn, inside a bass reflex enclosure. The Klipsch Reference Series floor-standing loudspeaker will bring out the power, detail, and emotion in your music, movies, or video games.

Driver Technology
Enclosure Design
Mounting Options

Driver Technology

Highly-Efficient Design: The Klipsch RF-42 II utilizes a highly efficient design to produce more output using less power & energy for louder sound with less distortion. The RF-42 II is able to fill small to medium rooms with outstanding, accurate, non-fatiguing sound that you can listen to for hours.

Tractrix Horn Tweeter: The Klipsch RF-42 II features a professional-grade 1.0-inch titanium-diaphragm compression driver inside a square Tractrix Horn for smoother high-end response with greater extension, enhanced imaging, and more powerful dynamics. The Tractrix Horn delivers a 90-degree wide by 60-degree high dispersion pattern for a broader sound-stage. Behind the horn lies a 1.0-inch titanium tweeter with a linear travel suspension for open, natural, sound.

Dual Woofers: The dual 4.5-inch woofers of the RF-42 II feature Klipsch's distinctive, copper-colored Cerametallic cones. Made with an anodized aluminum, these cones are strong and dent resistant. The anodizing process converts their inner and outer surfaces to ceramic. The outcome is a rigid cone with superb damping characteristics that will not flex or resonate at frequencies within the woofer's operating range. The 4.5-inch woofers also employ a rubber surround for added durability.

Crossover Network: For signal purity and perfect driver integration, the crossover on the RF-42 II features the finest components and Klipsch custom internal wiring.

Enclosure Design

Bass Reflex Enclosure: The dual 4.5-inch Cerametallic cone woofers and 1.0" titanium diaphragm compression driver are mounted in a Bass reflex enclosure which features a single rear-firing port. The RF-42 II's rigid cabinet offers improved internal cross-bracing to minimize panel vibrations that can color sound and a rear-firing port to eliminate turbulence noise. A black metallic finished baffle around the horn mouth and dual woofers dramatically improve acoustics across the sonic range. The bass reflex enclosure features a MDF cabinet finished with a Black Ash wood-grain vinyl.

Detachable Grille: The floor-standing loudspeaker features a removable grille which easily snaps into place over its cast-aluminum front baffle. The speaker can be used with or without its grille in place.


Dual Binding Posts: The speaker has two sets of binding posts connected by jumpers. Using the dual binding posts, you can bi-amp or bi-wire the speakers. The binding post terminals will accept banana plugs (single only), pin-connectors, spade-connectors, and bare wire.

Mounting Options

Feet: The RF-42 II feature two integrated front-feet and two stabilizer rear-feet with rubber bottoms so you can safely place the speaker on your tile or hardwood floors. The Reference RF-42 II also comes supplied with a set of carpet spikes so you can place the speaker comfortably on your carpet. The supplied carpet spikes add approximately 1.0-inch to the height of the speaker. The carpet spikes screw in directly to the bottom of the floor-standing speaker's feet.

Placement: The Reference Series floor-standing loudspeaker is designed to perform well in a wide variety of locations but you will get the most out of the speaker by following these simple guidelines.

  • The speaker requires a few inches of clearance behind it to allow its port to breathe and will sound best when they are at least two feet from any nearby walls.
  • A pair of RF-42 II loudspeakers should be equal distance from the wall behind them. It also helps to have the left and right speakers at different distances from their nearest side walls. This sort of staggering helps smooth the bass range.

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Q & A

Customer Q&A

5 questions already asked

Total watts for the RF-42 II is 300 watts. The RMS is at 75 watts. The sensetivity is very high at 95db which means it takes less power to put out more sound! Keep in mind with these speakers, they put out some bass, but I'm using my RF-42II with a sub. How do these speakers sound? For the price they definitely do the job! After hooking them up, my 19 year old son and I watched Transformers and the sound was like you were at the movies! They're are a lot of great sounding speakers out there, if your willing to pay thousands of dollars! I'm not one of those people! In a living room these are definitely more than enough! I recommend these speakers WITH A SUB! Hope this helps you. [ WILLIAM  Sep 03, 2014 ]
I don't know about B&W.but you can't go wrong with Klipsch.they are pleasant to listen to for long periods of time.the most important thing is that the subwoofers complete them.don't buy cheap subs pair them up.use dual subs. [ NICHOLAS W  Jul 28, 2014 ]
Thanks this helps [ Rishi  Jul 28, 2014 ]
I'm afraid I cannot specifically compare the performance with the B&W 684 since I don't have those speakers, but can certainly vouch for the exceptional clarity and overall quality of RF-42 II. Extremely happy with these...just be sure to get the center channel and a good, powered sub-woofer as well... Sharadh N [ Sharadh  Jul 27, 2014 ]
I did not have a chance to listen to the B and W's. [ Ryan  Jul 26, 2014 ]
Thanks for your question. For information on comparing two or more models I would recommend reaching out to an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. They will be able to help determine the differences and help you make the best choice for your system and your budget. [ Greg  Jul 26, 2014 ]  Staff
stability w/o sacrafising looks. [ JOSEPH A  Mar 07, 2014 ]
Set it up, turn it on, and if it falls over, put the legs back on. That's what they are for. [ DANIEL M  Mar 04, 2014 ]
The speaker box itself is 6" wide. From one side of a leg to the other is approx 10". Note that the legs are not attached when you receive the speaker and they are optional. [ ARTHUR  Feb 26, 2014 ]
I like my speakers. You'll like either pair.the RF52 will have more mid bass.the big thing is the subs. I have two Klipsch subs. They make all the difference. Tell your wife to stay out of the stereo stuff and you won't tell her what makeup to buy. You can always upgrade later but GET THE SUBS! Sorry wifey. [ NICHOLAS W  Feb 13, 2014 ]
I'm not super picky, but I can't imagine needing more volume or depth of sound than what the 42's provide. My room is about 30 sq meters with 5 meter ceilings and I primarily use them for music more than movies or sports. [ LLOYD E  Feb 03, 2014 ]
Thank you very much [ Shay  Feb 03, 2014 ]
I listen to mine more for music. My wife saw the size of the 52's and forced me to get the 42's. However I kept the 52's and listed to both side by side. To both of us (for music) the difference was definitely noticeable. However the 52 is by far a bigger speaker. It is slender and not too tall but stands out from the wall at least 16 inches once set up and with a little gap in the back for the port. If you are using mainly for TV/movie you may be alright with the 42. Hope this helps. [ Ryan  Feb 03, 2014 ]
I have a similar room, just over 19 square meters and purchased the 42s, they more than fill the room with sound. I'm using it in a dedicated home theater room, and splurged on the sw110 subwoofer. I would recommend the 42s to anyone with a similar room size. [ Daniel  Feb 02, 2014 ]
Yes, your wife is correct! I have the 42's and they are VERY powerful !! [ DAVID  Feb 02, 2014 ]