Kanto YU Passive 4
Kanto YU Passive 4

Kanto YU Passive 4" Passive bookshelf speakers (Black)

Part Number: Kanto-YU-Passive-4-Black
Your Price:$199.99
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Passive bookshelf speakers (Black)

Easy on the eyes, ears, and bottom line

Pair these value-priced speakers with high-quality amp and stands, and you'll be surprised how great they sound in your home.

Kanto's YU Passive 4" is a non-amplified version of their popular YU4 powered speakers. This pair features the same 4" Kevlar® woofer and 1" silk dome tweeter, but with a passive design for driving them with the amplifier of your choice.

Enclosed in a modern-yet-classic bass reflex cabinet, the exposed drivers deliver lifelike, transparent sound. You get smooth high frequencies from the silk dome tweeter, and fast, articulate bass and midrange from the Kevlar woofer.

My hands-on experience with Kanto YU passive bookshelf speakers

I've got a compact, symmetrical listening area off my kitchen. The sweet spot is on the loveseat that faces a fireplace flanked with deep shelves. I swapped the YU Passive 4s, then the larger 5.25" pair, for my usual bookshelf speakers. I drove them with a Sprout 100 integrated amp that can deliver 100 watts into 4 ohms, putting both Kanto models through the same paces.

Unsurprisingly, the 5.25" version delivered a bigger soundstage with more low end, but both handled bass and dispersed high frequencies in a similar way. I noticed impressive detail and distinct instrumental separation, particularly when I listened to the Brazilian-inflected jazz quartet on Paul Desmond's Bossa Antigua. The speakers delivered an articulate rendering of Desmond's breathy sax and Jim Hall's nuanced guitar work. Connie Kay's rimshots had a warm timbre, and the nimble bass had surprising ballast.

And I really had fun listening to Little Feat's first album - a Stones-y/Faces-y rock'n'roll rollick - through the YU passives. I missed this album on my first go-round with Little Feat in the '80s, so this was my first time hearing it - and we kept it in rotation all weekend. The speakers deftly handled the album's energetic gear-shifting - from full-on raunchy rock to plaintive piano and voice. The songs really came to life when I pushed the volume, and the speakers barely broke a sweat. In fact, these speakers sound most inviting when cranked.

The speakers have a classic look and sound, with exciting midrange, and non-fatiguing high frequencies. They would be a great choice for near-field listening, but the dispersion is good enough that they sound great in my modest-sized kitchen area, even when I'm cooking instead of sitting in the sweet spot. You might want to add a subwoofer, but on my deep, open shelves bass was definitely there - a reminder that placement really affects rear-ported cabs.

Stands put your sweet spot on the level

Arranging your speakers so that the drivers fire toward your ears makes a huge difference.

These solid MDF cabinets are tailor-made to work with a variety of Kanto speaker stands. You have a choice of angled desktop stands and four different pedestal stand heights that work perfectly for getting the speakers positioned at ear level, whether you're listening to them as a stereo pair, or as part of a surround system.

Kudos to Kanto for offering you a lot of options for straightforward speaker and stand combinations, with great quality and value.

Got wire?

The YU passive 4" doesn't include any speaker wire. Read our article about choosing and installing speaker wire.
Shop our selection of speaker wire.

Product highlights:

  • each speaker features:
    • 1" silk dome tweeter
    • 4" Kevlar® woofer
    • rear-firing bass-reflex port
  • frequency response: 60-20,000 Hz
  • sensitivity: 86 dB
  • handles up to 70 watts
  • nominal impedance: 4 ohms
  • bottom-mounted 1/4"-20 threaded hole attaches to compatible Kanto speaker stands (sold separately)
  • gold-plated binding post speaker terminals
  • 5-9-16"W x 8-3/4"H x 7-9/16"D
  • weight: 5.5 lbs. each
  • warranty: 2 years
  • MFR # YUP4

What's in the box:

Kanto YU Passive 4" owner's manual

  • 2 Bookshelf loudspeakers
  • 8 Self-adhesive rubber feet
  • User Manual

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