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Revel W228Be In-Wall Speaker Review

Rate this speaker:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 5 4.9%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 9 8.8%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 50 49.0%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 38 37.3%

  • Total voters
    102

amirm

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This is a review and detailed measurements of the Revel W228Be 3-way, dual woofer in-wall speaker. Speaker was kindly purchased by member through our company (Madrona Digital) and drop shipped for testing (cost: $3,500 each):
Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker high-end speaker review.jpg

Please excuse the crude picture of the speaker. In reality, the speaker looks like the guts of Revel F228Be, with woofers reconfigured. It is a shame that its gorgeous looks will likely be hidden by the grill in many applications (I tested the speaker without it). Originally I was going to measure the speaker in baffle mode of the Klippel NFS but after realizing how tall and impractical it was, we decided to get the backwall and test the speaker as if it were stand-alone. The backbox is heavy, and much taller than the speaker itself making it very difficult to stand up solidly on Klippel NFS to measure it. But with the help of multiple bungie cords, I got there. The combo was too heavy for me to lug inside to listen to it so I am only going to show the measurements.

I don't know if I was doing something wrong but the backbox seemed to be a bit shallow, keeping the speaker from seating on it tightly. Gaskets were provided which mitigated this but there may still have been some leakage. Such leakage would be harmless in actual in-wall installation. But in my measurements, both it and the edges would cause some inaccuracy. Fortunately I found Revel's own measurements and they correlate well with mine, if you smooth it.

Note: as I mentioned at the outset, this speaker was purchased through Madrona Digital. Seeing how I am founder of the company, feel free to read whatever level of bias you like in my subjective remarks.

Revel W228Be Speaker Measurements

We are going to treat the speaker as stand-alone even though it is not going to be used that way. So be mindful of this as you go through the measurements:
Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker anechoic frequency response Measurement.png


Bass response is shelved down but likely due to the fact that you get enhancement there once speaker is mounted in-wall. In an in-wall situation other than center speaker, you are going to listen at an angle so let's look at ± 30 degrees:
Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker -30 degree frequency response Measurement.png

The ups and downs above 2 kHz are smoothed out fair bit. Some of the variations left may be due edge diffractions of the back box which wouldn't exist in real life situation. To wit, near-field measurements of the drivers looks excellent:
Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker Driver frequency response Measurement.png


Our models for early reflections and predicted in-room response don't work for in-wall installations but let's look at them anyway:
Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker early window frequency response Measurement.png


Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker predicted in-rooom frequency response Meas...png

PIR response is surprisingly nice, likely due to good directivity which we can confirm:
Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker horizontal beam width Measurement.png

Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker horizontal directivity Measurement.png

Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker Vertical directivity Measurement.png

I have greyed out the areas past the edges of the speaker.

Many of these in-wall speakers are installed in home theater application where power handling is a key performance metric so let's look at that:
Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker relative THD distortion measurements.png

Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker THD distortion measurements.png

Wow, this is superb! You are getting tower speaker performance in a compact in-wall speaker.

EDIT: forgot to include the stress SPL test:
Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker SPL measurements.png

Listening to sweeps, I could only detect some distortion at the start and nothing but clean sound even at 106 dBSPL!

Impedance is typical in the near 4 ohm range:
Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker impedance and phase response Measurement.png



CSD/Waterfall response shows a number of resonances but these could be due to backbox that won't normally be heard:
Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker Waterfall CSD Measurement.png

Here is the step response:

Revel Dual 8-inch (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker Step response Measurement.png


Conclusions
Revel's goal has been to take one of their high-performance speakers, the Revel F228Be, and turn it into an in-wall speakers. Confirming this is kind of challenging due to factors I mentioned but I think we can safely conclude that they have accomplished that. Company's solution up to now has been JBL Synthesis line. It is nice to see that augmented with Revel touch and look. The main thing I like here is the power handling and directivity. Frequency response will have EQ anyway.

Since I have not listened to W228Be, I can't provide a recommendation one way or the other. But if I were building a home theater for myself, these would be the speakers I would use.
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As always, questions, comments, recommendations, etc. are welcome.

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Reserved for @AdamG to kindly post the specs.

Manufacturer Specifications:

General Specifications​

ModelW228Be
DescriptionDual 8" (200mm) 3-way In-wall Loudspeaker
High Frequency Transducer1" (25mm) Beryllium dome with dual ceramic-magnets and acoustic lens waveguide
Midrange Frequency Transducer5.25" (130mm) Deep Ceramic Composite (DCC) Aluminum Cone Mid-range
Low Frequency Transducer2x 8" (200mm) Deep Ceramic Composite (DCC) Aluminum Cone Woofers
Recommended Amplifier Power (RMS)50-400 Watts @ 4 ohms
Frequency Response (-6dB on-axis)35-40 kHz
Sensitivity (2.83V@1m)90 dB
Maximum SPL115 dB
Impedance (Nominal / Minimum)6 Ohms / 4 Ohms
Crossover Frequency220 Hz,2500 Hz
Crossover Type / Slope4th order and 3rd order
ControlsHigh Frequency Level - Flat / Attenuated
Input TypeGold-plated Spring-Loaded Binding Posts
Mounting TypeRevel Cat Claw Mounting System
Compatible Wall Thickness RangeMin 0.4" (10mm) / Max 1.0" (25mm)
Cutout Dimension(s)35.3" x 12.2" (896mm x 309mm)
Mounting Depth3.8" (96.4mm)
Enclosure Volume Range1650 in3 (27L) to 3300 in3 (54L)
Net Dimensions with grille (HxWxD)37.0" x 13.9" x 4.1" (938.6mm x 352.9mm x 104.5mm)
Net Weight (Speaker + Grille)31.5 lb (14.3kg)
Shipping Dimensions (HxWxD)45.0" x 17.3" x 10.0" (1142mm x 440mm x 255mm)
Shipping Weight40.6 lb (18.4kg)
Packed As (Each / Pair)Each
UPC Code050667380144
EAN Code1200130003608

Optional Accessory 1 Specifications (Sold Separately)​

ModelW228BEBB (Sold Separately)
DescriptionW228Be In-Wall Back-box
Input TypeGold-plated Spring-Loaded Binding Posts
Compatible Wall Thickness RangeMin 0.4" (10mm) / Max 0.6" (16mm)
Enclosure Volume (Cubic Inch / Liters)1664.1 in3 (27.3L)
Net Dimensions (HxWxD)55.1" x 14.0" x 3.5" (1400mm x 355mm x 87.9mm)
Net Weight20.9 lb (9.5kg)
Shipping Dimensions (HxWxD)61.4" x 20.3" x 10.6" (1560mm x 515mm x 270mm)
Shipping Weight34.4 lb (15.6kg)
Packed As (Each / Pair)Each
UPC Code050667380182
EAN Code1200130003646

Optional Accessory 2 Specifications (Sold Separately)​

ModelWB82 (Sold Separately)
DescriptionW228Be Pre-Construction Bracket
Packed As (Each / Pair)Each
 
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The wide vertical directivity is nice to see in an in wall.


Could you, in theory, alter the delay and phase between midrange and tweeter to aim the lobe up/down? Specifically, the angle at which frequencies at crossover point cancel.


Most installs I see have the in walls above the listening position.
 
Would it be possible to add an in wall front port to the W228Be install so the low end measures closer to the F228Be?

w228be.png
 
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I love rotatable midrange+tweeter

Listening to sweeps, I could only detect some distortion at the start and nothing but clean sound even at 106 dBSPL!

Do people ever measure low-voltage linearity for speakers?
 
Amir, it seems the microphone is very slightly off axis (5 degrees?) horizontally recently, as seen in the heat map, and Pierre’s Spinorama. Here’s F206:

IMG_4407.jpeg

The ±30° and 60° measurements don’t align perfectly. Please look into this, because we value your measurements immensely and would love them to be as perfect as possible.
 
Please look into this, because we value your measurements immensely and would love them to be as perfect as possible.
This speaker was incredibly hard to keep upright so while I noticed it was a hair angled, I did not want to risk it falling down by trying to rotate it. You are not going to listen to a speaker at precise angle and never moving anyway.
 
For once, measurements don't match. I am surprised that the box made such a difference esp. in the bass area. Something looks wrong to me.
newplot (3).png
W228Be Spin (1).jpg


P.S. I am checking my data. The webplotdigitizer file is available here.
 
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Would it be possible to add an in wall front port to the W228Be install so the low end measures closer to the F228Be?

View attachment 372614
The backbox that comes with it is way too small to provide the tuning for that port. Without it, I guess you could build your own box. Please note that you will get bass enhancement beyond what is shown in the measurements as you are directing the rear energy forward by wall mounting.
 
The backbox that comes with it is way too small to provide the tuning for that port. Without it, I guess you could build your own box. Please note that you will get bass enhancement beyond what is shown in the measurements as you are directing the rear energy forward by wall mounting.

I tried the Revel F228Be with the Revel provided "Foam Port Plugs" inserted and it reduced bass response significantly. Would it be fair to expect the W228Be installed in a backbox to sound similar to the F228Be with Port Plugs installed? Or would you expect the pure fact of wall mounting to restore bass?
 
I tried the Revel F228Be with the Revel provided "Foam Port Plugs" inserted and it reduced bass response significantly. Would it be fair to expect the W228Be installed in a backbox to sound similar to the F228Be with Port Plugs installed? Or would you expect the pure fact of wall mounting to restore bass?
The backbox only provides about 27 Liters of space, whereas the standard tower speaker has about 135 liters due to the huge difference in depth mostly.

3.5 inches versus 14.8 inches.
 
Congratulations to REVEL for finally giving us a wall mount product that works as it should. Coupled with a solid Subwoofer this is possibly the best in wall spreaker ever tested? At least one of the best. Judging from memory. Kudos to REVEL.

Thanks for the Review Sir. A busy weekend for you. ;)
 
Do anyone is familiar with the HIVI audio brand? They also have a lot of these tower floorstanding speakers, which are very affordable.
amirm have tested a DIY HIVI products before and the results seemed quite good.

I would like to review some of their other products.

For example:
Swan D3.2MKIII (Main speaker)
$ 945.00

Swan M803A
$2,174.00
 
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