Originally Posted by mmiles
This appears to be an educational thread with a strong marketing undertone.
I fully agree that Revel is a great product (my small part time AV op has considered the line) as well as having respected industry staff.
But it is like Revel is the standard others are compared to in essence of this thread. At least that is my take.
Samsung/HARMAN has the $$$ to test as many speakers as they would like. Inside trading and accommodation deals are common.
Has any tested speaker ever “beat” a Revel? Is testing room and method tilted in anyway? Is the testing room part of the design department and engineering where Revel speakers are tweaked?
Your comments and questions relate to a 50 year research effort that I began as a government research scientist at the National Research Council of Canada. After 26 years of research and publications - not funded by a specific corporation or brand, I accepted an offer to join Harman International as Corporate VP Acoustical Engineering in 1991, and incorporate the scientific method into product design. As an unexpected bonus I was allowed to set up a corporate research group - not attached to any brand - to continue the scientific investigations, and to publish the results for all to see. You will find many papers by me and my colleagues in AES journals and preprints. The product of the research group was knowledge, not products. Remarkably, not all Harman products over the years have taken advantage of the science - such is the short sightedness of sales and marketing. Revel is a brand that believes in the scientific method, where double-blind listening provides guidance - how things sound is the driving force - and detailed correlations with comprehensive and accurate measurements follow that guidance. Starting with "neutral" loudspeakers is essential. Resonance and distortion free sound is a necessary foundation. Beyond that tone controls can provide compensation for variable recordings, personal preferences, etc.
So, yes, Revel loudspeakers figure prominently in these discussions because they exemplify the results of 50 years of research. The results of that research is in my books and numerous AES papers - it is in the public domain. Anyone can follow it if they choose to and thereby join the growing population of excellent, i.e. neutral, loudspeakers.
I have been accused in these forums of being a salesman for Revel, JBL, etc. Truly, as a scientist, I am a salesman for the scientific method, and the reproducible data that issue therefrom; something that is forever. Opinions come and go, but everybody is welcome to one
Although Samsung owns Harman, Harman still operates substantially independently - including budget, so the mass of money in Korea is not accessible to loudspeaker engineers in Northridge California. Things may or may not change.