Our previous dealings with Revel’s Concerta2 range saw a five-star, three-time What Hi-Fi? Award-winner emerge, in the shape of the M16 standmounters.
While that doesn’t mean all the speakers in this range will blow us away in the same manner, we wonder whether lightning can strike twice with these Revel Concerta2 F35 floorstanders.
Build and compatibility
The Concerta2 F35s are a two and a half way design. Highs are taken care of by a 25mm aluminium dome tweeter, which sits inside Revel’s Acoustic Lens Waveguide. The waveguide is designed to help with dispersion, off-axis listening and integration.
Below the tweeter sits a 13cm mid-bass driver and two woofers of identical size. They use a special MCC material (Micro-Ceramic Composite) created by Revel’s parent company, Harman. The cone is constructed by sandwiching aluminium between two thin layers of ceramic.
Bass port(s) Rear
Max power 180W
Impedence 6 ohms
Dimensions (hwd) 102 x 21 x 31cm
There are no visible screws or fastenings on the front of the F35s, so this makes for a clean cut appearance. The curved cabinet and gloss white (or black) finish give the speakers premium touches, but the simple-looking drive units let the side down a little. Rivals from B&W, Dali and Monitor Audio will arguably look more interesting on the shop floor. Popping the white magnetic grilles into place tidies things up, but you do sacrifice some clarity. So, grill-less it is for us.
The Concerta2 F35s come with rubberised feet, but they’re also hollow and threaded in the middle to allow you to screw in the supplied spikes. We’d take Revel up on their offer: with the spikes off, the Revels sound a little tubby, but everything’s better defined with them screwed in.
Being twin-ported at the rear, you should be wary of placing the Revels too close to a rear wall. We settle for around 60-70cm from our test room walls – this keeps lows weighty enough without sounding too clouded or boomy. The good news is the F35s are extremely flexible when it comes to listening off axis. There’s no need for toeing in and you’re not limited to a narrow sweetspot.
Once we’re happy with their positioning, we shake off any dust particles with a quick blast of Faithless’s dance classic Insomnia. And the Revels transport you back to the dancefloors of the 1990s in no time.
The track’s blipping bassline can be lost with poorer-sounding speakers. With the Revels, you’re left in no doubt of its presence. The F35s give those bass notes a satisfying texture and match the pace of the track beat for beat.
It’s impressive how effortless the Revels sound. They dispatch any genre you throw their way with minimal fuss, but that doesn’t come at the expense of excitement. The F35s never sound disinterested or aloof, displaying more than enough enthusiasm to give the track impetus.
We play the Pirates Of The Caribbean OST, and the dynamics and detail on offer are superb. The speakers create a spacious and open soundstage for the orchestra to shine – the integration between the different drivers shines through as all the various elements intertwine without tripping over each other.
The ebb and flow is easy to follow, the quieter moments contrasting wonderfully with the louder passages of play. You can sit there and just revel (sorry!) in the excitement and drama of the song.
There aren’t many speakers at this price that make listening to music as enjoyable as the Revel Concerta2 F35s. It’s a rare talent, and one that goes a long way to landing these floorstanders the full five-stars.
- Sound 5
- Compatibility 4
- Build 5