Kanto Audio's TUK Wows the Ears During Its Stellar CES Debut
Described in marketing materials as a “near field” speaker intended for desktop listening, Kanto had TUK positioned in a bookshelf role during full-demos at its Venetian suite during CES 2019. The smartly finished all-white speaker was setup on matching stands and allowed to strut its stuff handling traditional 2-channel duties.
TUK isn’t an ordinary active speaker, as it’s loaded with interesting tech that makes it unusually versatile. On the most basic of levels, owners can choose to tap TUK’s internal 65-watt amplifier using standard wires... or by cutting wires and streaming over high-quality Bluetooth with aptX HD. The speaker also houses a rear-accessed onboard USB DAC. And for those quiet moments where discrete listening is a necessity, owners can plug-in their favorite headphones to the front jack and enjoy the built-in headphones amp. Finally, fans of vinyl can skip the use of any external phono stage, connecting the speaker directly to a turntable because it carries a phono preamp, too.
Driver-wise, Kanto says the speaker’s AMT tweeter benefits from a new design, while the mid-range driver features an aluminum concave-cone woofer. It’s a very attractive looking compliment that’s housed in a gorgeously sleek and sturdy cabinet.
TUK turned out to be one of my top favorite finds at CES 2019, as my ears were wowed and impressed by the speaker’s stellar clarity and confident full-range sonic capabilities. Its AMT tweeter delivered a beautifully smooth top end punctuated by some zing and spunk, and its low end was impressively controlled even as Kanto’s team challenged the speaker with Martin Garrix’s aggressive techno attack “Animals.” Overall, imaging was excellent (despite the less than optimal environment), making for a very intriguing package that's certainly piqued my curiosity. Alas, AV NIRVANA has requested to be placed in the review queue (which should allow for a full breakdown to occur sometime during late Q2)!
The TUK is priced at ($799/pair) and is scheduled to begin shipping in early 2019. Click below to see TUK in action.