The F208s are great, Milt. Really, they're everything I hoped they'd be. I wasn't sure they'd top my Peerless/Vifa Frankenspeakers but they do, and by a good margin. Not sure I could have come closer on my own even if I did have an anechoic chamber with a Harmon-style rotisserie spinning my speakers like gyro meat or one of those Land Of Tomorrow speaker shuffler systems. They're invisible. Like listening to big Maggies you don't hear the speakers as much as you hear a holographic presentation of music in the room. All that, and with phenomenal cone and dome dynamics. When you get to be my age you start playing bull$h!t bingo when you read loudspeaker reviews because they all use the same language, even for speakers that I've found to be pedestrian at best, but that's how I see them.
I hauled my test discs around for so many months leading up to this to hear Magnepan, Martin Logan, KEF, Goldenear, Aerial, Focal, Vandersteen, I was a busy boy, but I took the chance on the F208s based upon reputation and how they looked on paper, and I'm done shopping for good. Not sure what I'm going to say if I run into my local audio salon owner who doesn't sell Revel. I'll probably just drop and fake a seizure. The only speakers I liked as much were two or three times as expensive. Bet you never heard that in a speaker review either, right?? Nevertheless, folks really should hear these if they're looking at cone and dome designs, even if the other apple of their eye costs a lot more.
One particular highlight was a recent evening where I fed them nothing but my most notable female vocal torture tracks at moderately high volume. That was a thing to behold. As an example, Joss Stone's voice on "All The King's Horses" gets ugly when pushed hard through more speakers I've heard than not, but it's just no big deal with these and they don't do it with recessed or veiled mids. It's all there, lively, present, and flat in response, but with every possibility of resonance perfectly controlled. I have a basement recording studio where I play drums and engineer recordings for a few local singer/songwriters, and these are going to come in handy for testing my work. I master with headphones, but these will be an excellent final judge of my work, for better or for worse.
I've always listened to music for an hour or three most days while reading, kind of switching back and forth, so it's nice to be going through my whole music collection again with a fresh angle. Seems like every day I hear something they do better than what I had, like a floor tom with more punch than I remembered or a vocal harmony wider than I thought possible. I mentioned something in an earlier post about being highly entertained by how they occasionally image to the sides of their physical placement, something I haven't heard too many speakers do in a compelling way, and I had some fun with that just earlier today. I was listening to an old Bread recording (for science purposes only of course) with my eyes closed and I started pointing to where some of the voices were coming from. At times the singer doing the harmony vocal is standing five or six feet to the left of the left speaker. I don't know why the F208s can do that when my old speakers couldn't, but it's a cool parlor trick and very addictive.
Edited by bigwally - 7/4/13 at 7:19am