REVEL Performa 3 M106

MJ01.11.2014

Stand mount monitors

Revel has a very slow innovation cycle, a kind of "no need for a change if there is no reason for it". However, they have decided to innovate the Performa line finally. As good as the innovation looked on the paper I had mixed feelings when auditioning the brand new M106 - to my ears it is a step back from the excellent predecessor, the Revel Performa M22.

Function and form

90%
Ease of use
34%
Sound
95%
Appearance

The 1" aluminum dome tweeter has been innovated in two ways - its break up mode has been moved out of audible range, and the tweeter now sits in a shallow plastic waveguide. Revels promises better dispersion and, consequently, wider sweet spot.

The midbass driver is also aluminum one, stiffened by special grooves. It sits in a plastic surround; there is another plastic feature on the Revels' cabinets - a special polymer piece on top of the speakers should help damp the enclosures and gives the speakers a "softer" look. Both the drivers work in a relatively small cabinet, the bass output is supported by a sizable rear firing reflex port.

Bass management

Weight
43
Slam
40
Articulation
15

The pumping synthetic bass line in Madonna's Vogue was like from a boombox through the Revels. The bass was too prominent and not well integrated, it was like a listening to a monitor with a badly set up subwoofer unit. On top of the boomy sound the bass was without articulation and inner resolution. Unfortunately some of those characteristic projected also into Madonna's voice that exhibited a bit of boxiness. I did not like this sound at all.

Clarity & delicacy

Detail
42
Air
38
Transparency
39

Moving up to midrange and highs the sonics improved - the mids were reasonably articulated and resolved, the highs of the Revel M106 were not sharp or shrieky, and the sound had a kind of relaxing signature. However, the very same relaxing signature prevents cymbals to sound open and extended, they were veiled sort of. The missing textures are what handicaps the M106.

Tonal accuracy

Timbre
29
Dynamics
36
Temporal resolution
38

The Revels were quite good in chamber music. The simplicity of instrumental arrangements helped the M106 sound involving. The acoustic guitar exhibited quick transients with fast decays, the cabinets apparently did not store energy which was good. Unfortunately I missed the sound's harmonics which resulted into missing information about the body of the guitar - I could hear the strings but not the instrument as a whole.

Spatial resolution

Holography
32
Soundstage width
35
Soundstage depth
29

Due to the aforementioned frequency incoherence the spatial informations are less 3D than they could be. Honestly speaking I see not a lot of value in the M106s. Rather check the floorstanding model which improves in the right direction.

Price as reviewed:52 000,- Kč

Recommended resellers

Excelia HiFi, Chrudim, tel. +420 724 00 77 44

Associated components

  • Sources: Meridian G08.2 a Cambridge Audio 851C
  • Amplifiers: Meridian G02 preamplfier and G57 amplifiers, Cambridge Audio 851A integrated
  • Interconnects and speaker cables: Cardas Neutral Reference, Cross and Crosslink
  • Loudspeakers: Revel Ultima Studio2

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