I have also auditioned Revel F208 AND Focal Electra 1028 BE. (The shop did not have the 1038BE's that were on my list.)
Winner: Revel F208
Both hooked up to same gears. The shop owner moved wires between the speekers.
Integrated amplifier: Mark Levinson No.585
Blura yplayer: Pioneer BDP-LX88
Music: Malia & Boris Blank "Convergence"
I started to listen at Revel F208 that sounded very smooth and comfortable despite rather high sound level. One thing I noticed almost direct was the sound, very well sounding music with powerful song and bass.
Switched to Focal 1028 after 45 minutes of listening. Huge difference!!! Very harsh hard sound that gave my ears more than they wanted. The sound was no longer good music into one, more analytic and separated sound in tweeter, midrange and bass. The bass was good and tight with nice pump though.
But my ears could not take it for long, neither my head when I got headache after 20-30 minutes. I understood that Electra 1028/1038 cannot replace my old Monitor Audio GR60 setup that also has slightly sharp tweeter. My wife should not be able to hear it.
Switched back to Revel F208. I had to know how I think now after the Electra experience. Should they sound too laidback, missing details?
No, nice wonderful music without lack of details. My family will love them.
The more detailed harsh sound from the Electra's is nothing I want when it is a tweeter that take too much focus. My family would not feel good either with that harsh sound.
Maybe the Electra 1028 sound different with different amplifier that need a harsher sounding speaker...
The Revel large center speaker will match really good to with large woofers of same size as the F208. I'm sure it will sound well together. I have not listened to them. The shop owner loved them. He has a lot of very expensive gears and well trained ears since decades of selling true high end stuff.
We ended up the session in another room with real high level 2 channel. TAD's largest speakers, mono blocks, preamp, CD..
WOW!! Realy nice sound despite very high sound level. Organ that sound huge with 24Hz tone...
We talked about same thing as the Revel F208's, really nice sound, music, instruments. NO harsh not nice details zzzzzcreeeeaming tweeters as the Focal Electras.
The Revel F208 sounded really good after that session with really high end gears that cost a lot more.
The fact about Electra 1038's demands on an amplifier that can deliver good power at 2 ohms helped my choice too. The Revels are not that demanding.
Before the vistit to the shop I was sure about purchase a complete Electra setup with 1038Be, center and surrounds, all in electra series.
The visit ended up in F208, C208 and S2006 surrounds. Ordered today (Black Friday discount I cannot miss). The sound made my choice, not the price. I could have purchased the complete Focal Electra 1038 setup (5.0) with larger discount
My amplifier home is a Nuforce 7 channel that can bi-amp the center (will have 2 channels left over. Can be rear with new processsor)
2 channel amp to feed the F208's. 3RD DJA:KEL 2x500W@8ohms, almost double @ 4ohms
old Thule PR350 processor
Bluray player Cambridge Audio CXU with good analoge circuits like OPPO 105D, maybe even better.
Subwoofer: SVS PC-13 Ultra.