Revel F208 vs F228Be - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 18 Old 08-31-2018, 07:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Revel F208 vs F228Be

I’m ready to pull the trigger on one of these speakers but am having trouble making the final decision. The main reason why is I’ve only been able to find the F228Be to demo. Of course I absolutely loved them. But, I don’t know if the improvement over the F208 justifies the extra cost. The F208 has been getting great reviews for years. Can someone with who has experience with both of these speakers chime in? Additionally, I need a center channel too. I would assume there is a matching center to the F228Be in development, right?
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post #2 of 18 Old 08-31-2018, 07:41 PM
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Have you read any of the Revel thread?

Kevin Voecks posted comparison spins in the new format (much easier to read) comparing F208 and F228Be. See post #12227

Floyd Toole just posted some things on the Revel Forum about the DCC drivers and we all know how superior Be is for the tweeter. Fifth generation wave guide too (F208's are 4th generation), so they have improved that.

I'm thinking seriously about selling my F208s and upgrading to the F228Be's.

I was not too serious about doing it until I read more about how much better the new drivers and crossovers are. I'm pretty sure you can hear a difference if you are a serious listener, listen at levels that are appropriate for the musical style (like rock or classical) and listen for extended periods of time (sit and enjoy listening for 1/2 hour or more at a time).

Kevin Voecks says the differences are most noticeable under those circumstances. You will notice the smoothness of the treble region (lower distortion even though the Performa 3's are much better than most speakers way over their price) and effortlessness of the entire speaker, there is less power compression when playing at higher SPL's (i.e they stay more linear at higher levels). Many speakers (including F208s) compress in the upper midrange at high levels. F228's are nearly as good as Salon2's.

Kevin Voecks posted comparison spins in the new format (much easier to read) comparing F208 and F228Be.

My motto is "buy once, cry once". There is nothing new coming down the pipeline from Revel, the Be series is it (they just hit the streets) and there will be new models in the lineup, hopefully a center channel like the Performa3 C208.

Hope that helps!

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post #3 of 18 Old 08-31-2018, 07:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks that does help. So the F228Be is better and to the trained ear, quite a bit better. So do they also expose what’s driving them? Meaning, would they necessitate an equipment upgrade?
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post #4 of 18 Old 08-31-2018, 08:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ccondo1 View Post
Thanks that does help. So the F228Be is better and to the trained ear, quite a bit better. So do they also expose what’s driving them? Meaning, would they necessitate an equipment upgrade?

F228Be's are very revealing and also very neutral meaning they tell you what is there without coloration. The biggest variable is the quality of the recording. Most science based information concludes that you cannot hear differences in well designed power amps that are capable of driving the load (most modern solid state amps, not tube amps).
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post #5 of 18 Old 09-01-2018, 10:45 AM
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I would buy the f208 for a ht system and the f228be for a dedicated 2 channel system because in ht the room is generally pretty busy with reflective surfaces everywhere mitigating sound quality. It is noteworthy the comparisons are made with a single speaker in a room designed to be sonically invisible lest the room skew listening results. Revel designs their products to sound accurate in normal rooms, but getting the nth degree is much more than throwing money at better speakers, especially 2 voiced as similar as those are. Rex pointed out the biggest variable is the quality of the recording and when you get up around $5k the room makes as big a difference as doubling down on speakers. Just my experience/opinion. And in full disclosure I have an old pair of kef R107/2 in my ht and salon2's in my 2 channel system.
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post #6 of 18 Old 09-01-2018, 11:05 AM
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I use F208s as L/R mains as part of a surround AV system in my living room. TV mounted on the wall, center channel below. My room has NO acoustic treatment and sounds great with just a rug and two sofas in there. I got rid of the cocktail table to eliminate the interference it caused.


I listen to stereo only CD's etc in two channel mode or use my Brystons SP2 processor to make it multichannel. No problems with listening either way. For movies and TV, it's always surround.


Like I said before, if you are a trained listener and want more refinement and higher SPL capabilities with less power compression, moving up the line makes sense.


In simplistic terms, you get the same basic things (neutral/uncolored on and off axis sound quality) but more of it and even better sound quality.


Revel has done an amazing job of creating a speaker line with many price points and you truly do get measurable and audible improvements in each step up.

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post #7 of 18 Old 09-01-2018, 11:47 AM
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I have my F208's and C208 in a dedicated room 23.5 long 12.8 wide and 10 ft ceiling. The room is set up for dual purpose HT and two channel, it is treated. I am exceptionally pleased with the performance when being used for either HT or two channel. Two channel preamp is a VTL5.5 with phono stage, VPI Scout TT, amp for the front three is a Parasound A31. HT Processor is an Emotiva XMC1 and OPPO 203. It is a 7.1 HT system.

That being said I would love to hear the 208BE's in my room for a direct comparison. I have only heard them at shows and was very impressed.

So anytime someone from Harmon wants to do a direct comparison
my room is open , I should be so lucky.

Don't know if this helps but the 208's are a lot of speaker for the price.

Gary

Have fun with music and HT

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post #8 of 18 Old 09-08-2018, 11:31 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by madhuski View Post
I had the same dilemna - for me it was 99% HT. The 208 probably would have made a lot of sense, but I didn't want to wonder "what if" so pulled the trigger on the 228be.
Have you been happy you did?
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post #9 of 18 Old 09-08-2018, 12:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ccondo1 View Post
I’m ready to pull the trigger on one of these speakers but am having trouble making the final decision. The main reason why is I’ve only been able to find the F228Be to demo. Of course I absolutely loved them. But, I don’t know if the improvement over the F208 justifies the extra cost. The F208 has been getting great reviews for years. Can someone with who has experience with both of these speakers chime in? Additionally, I need a center channel too. I would assume there is a matching center to the F228Be in development, right?

Do you have an option of listening to both speakers? If so, let your ears decide. While this is hard for some; don't let measurements and subjective comments influence your buying decision. If you can't listen to both then buy the F228Be. To make this simplistic is F228Be twice as good as the F208? I would venture a guess and say no. This is a very tricky decision if you can't listen to both. However, if I had no previous experience with the Revel line and couldn't audition both I would probably lean towards F228Be. As they say ignorance is bliss.

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post #10 of 18 Old 09-08-2018, 01:02 PM - Thread Starter
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I had the opportunity to listen to the F228Be and loved them. I ordered a pair but just keep wondering if I'd be just as happy with the F208s and left over cash to buy some new amps, etc.
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post #11 of 18 Old 09-08-2018, 02:22 PM
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I'll throw in my 2 cents.
To me it's a giant fallacy to try judge if the 228s are twice as good as the 208s.
I'll say flat out that the 228 is not twice as good as the 208.
A 228 doesn't measure twice as good as the 208 & the Salon2 does not measure 1.375 times better than Studio2s.
That just doesn't work in the audio realm as it really is a qualitative measure and not a quantitative measure.
Performance improvements are in the realm of the beholder and improvements are incremental.

I've lived with Revel Studio2s for years now and my appreciation and satisfaction only grows.

As far as needing to upgrade your gear, 1st you didn't list your upstream gear, 2nd as far as amplification the 208s are 1.5dbs less in sensitivity than the 228s.
It call it a wash.

As long as your budget allows I think you made the smart choice.
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post #12 of 18 Old 09-08-2018, 02:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Milt99 View Post
I'll throw in my 2 cents.
To me it's a giant fallacy to try judge if the 228s are twice as good as the 208s.
I'll say flat out that the 228 is not twice as good as the 208.
A 228 doesn't measure twice as good as the 208 & the Salon2 does not measure 1.375 times better than Studio2s.
That just doesn't work in the audio realm as it really is a qualitative measure and not a quantitative measure.
Performance improvements are in the realm of the beholder and improvements are incremental.

I've lived with Revel Studio2s for years now and my appreciation and satisfaction only grows.

As far as needing to upgrade your gear, 1st you didn't list your upstream gear, 2nd as far as amplification the 208s are 1.5dbs less in sensitivity than the 228s.
It call it a wash.

As long as your budget allows I think you made the smart choice.
You're right, I should list my equipment. My current plan is to run Yamaha 3050 to an Emotiva XPA-200 amp. Was considering PS Audio Stellar/M700s
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post #13 of 18 Old 09-08-2018, 02:56 PM
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Sorry I hadn't realized you posted that info the Revel thread. thanks
What are your sources?
Turntable? Disc player? Network file server?

Depending on your other gear, I guarantee that after a very short time you will be rationalizing upgrades.
Not that you're an anomaly, it's just that the Revels will reward upstream improvements
Trust me.

If you like Class D amplification, those PS Audio amps look great w\ sufficient juice.
I think you'll be wanting to upgrade from the Yamaha AVR as pre\pro very soon.

I know many disagree with me but I feel a pre-amp\pre-pro is far more impactful than power amps given that they're not woefully under-powered for the speakers.
I bet you'd notice more of an improvement investing in a pre-amp\pro than you will just adding the PS Audio amps.
Nothing against Yamaha, they make excellent gear.

Marantz, Anthem make excellent pre\pros. I'm partial to Anthem due to the ARC room correction software & their tech support.

 
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post #14 of 18 Old 09-08-2018, 05:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Funny you mention Anthem because before I went down the 2 channel rabbit hole, I was just waiting for CEDIA to see if Anthem would have a new version of the MRX 1120
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post #15 of 18 Old 09-08-2018, 06:58 PM
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Funny you mention Anthem because before I went down the 2 channel rabbit hole, I was just waiting for CEDIA to see if Anthem would have a new version of the MRX 1120
Ccondo, here's what I recommend minus gear buying advice.

Get your Revels, set'em up & live with them for a month before changing anything in your system.
Listen as much as you can if it takes longer so what. You're building for the long term.

After you know what your new system sounds like & you have the bucks, that's when you start researching & deciding what if any upgrades you want next.
There are literally a ton of options, don't be in a hurry. Mull it over. When you think you've got it figured out, research some more.

Speaking personally, I've convinced myself of a certain direction many times only to pause and learn more..
Do not fall into the trap of the "next best thing". Things are awesome as ever right now.

 
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post #16 of 18 Old 10-03-2018, 09:44 PM
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As someone who has lived with both the 208s and now the 228be, the latter is a much better sounding speaker. It might be impossible to quantify "twice as good" but it is way better sounding, and not just to a trained ear. It is not a close horse race and shouldn't be for twice the price. I have a great group of audio buddies and we routinely have record parties and hang out and listen all night. They are very familiar with my system, all of them, including some rather cynical industry insiders have been floored by the 228. No one has done anything but heap praise on them and that is unusual for this crowd. Out of all the speakers I have had in my home these are the best sounding so far and it's not even close. The sense of space, depth, and driver intergration are superlative. I can sit almost anywhere in the room, including way off the side and stil hear a stable soundstage. It does not collapse off to one side like most other speakers, truly impressive. Transient response is also improved, it sails right through crescendos that would at times make the 208 sound like it was breaking up. this speaker is a true giant killer, I would take its sonic qualities over many speakers costing far more. I run Rogue Audio M180 dark mono blocks, tube amps that are a killer combo with this speaker. The 90db sensitivity and 8ohm impedance are also easer to drive and more tube friendly than the 208, so for me the Revel team really hit this one out of the park. Well done!!!!
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post #17 of 18 Old 11-29-2018, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by slsmusic View Post
As someone who has lived with both the 208s and now the 228be, the latter is a much better sounding speaker. It might be impossible to quantify "twice as good" but it is way better sounding, and not just to a trained ear. It is not a close horse race and shouldn't be for twice the price. I have a great group of audio buddies and we routinely have record parties and hang out and listen all night. They are very familiar with my system, all of them, including some rather cynical industry insiders have been floored by the 228. No one has done anything but heap praise on them and that is unusual for this crowd. Out of all the speakers I have had in my home these are the best sounding so far and it's not even close. The sense of space, depth, and driver intergration are superlative. I can sit almost anywhere in the room, including way off the side and stil hear a stable soundstage. It does not collapse off to one side like most other speakers, truly impressive. Transient response is also improved, it sails right through crescendos that would at times make the 208 sound like it was breaking up. this speaker is a true giant killer, I would take its sonic qualities over many speakers costing far more. I run Rogue Audio M180 dark mono blocks, tube amps that are a killer combo with this speaker. The 90db sensitivity and 8ohm impedance are also easer to drive and more tube friendly than the 208, so for me the Revel team really hit this one out of the park. Well done!!!!



I had not planned on spending that kind of money on a set of speakers but I heard them and that was it.


They seem to do everything well.
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post #18 of 18 Old 02-07-2019, 12:47 PM
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I would assume there is a matching center to the F228Be in development, right?
There is now, see this post.
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