Reviewing the REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Speakers was a total delight.

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers featured

The team at REVEL has really created a wonderful product with these amazing Beryllium tweeters, the waveguides, the sandwich cones, and a sturdy build quality with a pleasing aesthetic. These speakers also tested very well with some of the lowest distortion readings of any speaker I have evaluated.

These speakers are the next iteration from the team at Harman Luxury Audio. They embody the technological advances of many years of hands-on research and development. The REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers feature Beryllium tweeters along with mid and woofer cones that are made from a high-end sandwich material.

The very inert cabinets are extremely solid with a beautiful finish that is higher grade than most automotive finishes. These speakers, taken as a singular product, are able to keep pace with many more expensive offerings from other manufacturers. They are a good value when considering where they fit among competitive brands.


REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers

  • Very flat frequency response
  • Precise imaging
  • Wide and high sound stage
  • Very clean and balanced bass
  • Somewhat limited bass extension
  • Works well in both stereo and surround settings
  • Extremely inert cabinet

I would think a vast majority of you reading this review are already very familiar with REVEL Loudspeakers and their world-class research and development programs. The team at REVEL sets out every day on a quest to design and build the most accurate speakers on the planet. They pursue this not only through hard science but also (the real key here) by way of effective double-blind listening tests. You can’t have one without the other: both sides of this coin must be worked simultaneously if you want to continually trend toward the ultimate goal of perfection.

Please take a few minutes to watch this short introductory video to learn a little more about how the fine people at Harman and REVEL approach loudspeaker design:

You can rest assured that everything REVEL does is State-of-the-Art.

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers front view

My review today will focus on the smallest of the three floor-standing speakers in the PerformaBe line. This product line is second only to the ULTIMA2 series. The PerformaBe series speakers are generally characterized by their Beryllium dome tweeters. I will discuss the specifics of the design in the ensuing sections of my review.

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers SPECIFICATIONS

3-way dual 6.5″ floor-standing loudspeaker


44 Hz – 40 kHz (-6 dB)


1 ~ 1” (25 mm) Beryllium dome, with acoustic lens waveguide

Midrange Driver:

1 ~ 5-1/4″ (130mm) Deep Ceramic Composite aluminum cone, with cast frame

Bass Drivers:

2 ~ 6.5″ (165mm) Deep Ceramic Composite aluminum cones, with cast frames

Crossover Frequencies (Hz):

260 and 2,100

Sensitivity (2.83V @ 1 m):

90 dB

Nominal Impedance:

8 Ohm

Recommended Amplifier Power:

50 – 200 watts


58 lbs. (26.4kg) each

Dimensions (HxWxD):

41.3″ x 9.8″ x 13.7″ (1050mm x 249mm x 347mm)

Available High-Gloss Finishes:

Black, White, Metallic Silver, and Walnut

MSRP (Pair):

$7,000.00 (USD)




REVEL, loudspeaker, floor-standing, Performa, PerformaBe, Beryllium, F226Be, Loudspeakers Review 2021


REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers all colors

The REVEL F226Be’s are considered compact floor standers. They are small enough to fit in a typical living space. What I mean by that is the larger speakers can sometimes be too large for smaller rooms. So the F226Be’s would work in a typical middle-class home or a large apartment. All you give up over their larger brethren is some bass extension, power handling, and possibly some loudness potential (though I wonder how loudly some people must listen judging by so many social media posts I encounter – OUCH!). Take care of your hearing people, and please don’t “crank it up”.

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers angled front

Let’s start with this amazing tweeter design. The dome is made of Beryllium (Be) which is very light, very rigid, and has endemic dampening properties. This makes Be one of the most ideal materials for a tweeter dome at least from the standpoint of its physical properties. The biggest downside is that Beryllium is very difficult to work with when it comes to creating the dome shape. So the cost of using Beryllium in a tweeter dome can be high. Thankfully, REVEL has that all figured out and the actual retail price of these speakers is in fact quite reasonable.

In the F226Be, the tweeters are 1 inch (25 mm) in diameter and they are driven by dual 85 mm ceramic magnets! That is a very large motor structure for a tweeter. My current reference speakers are VIVID Kaya 90’s. The VIVIDs have excellent tweeters but I could easily make the case that the tweeters in the F226Be’s are even sweeter.

This tweeter is mounted in a REVEL-designed waveguide that has become iconic to the brand. Here it is in REVEL’s own words, “[the] 5th-generation ceramic-coated, cast-aluminum Acoustic Lens waveguide seamlessly integrates with the directivity of the companion midrange driver resulting in greater efficiency, improved dynamic range, reduced distortion, and increased power handling compared to aluminum or titanium tweeters.” I couldn’t have said it better myself!

So this is a nice segue to a short discussion regarding the F226Be’s midrange. The F226Be is a true three-way design. The midrange driver operates in the passband from 260 Hz – 2.1 kHz. The 5-1/4” (130 mm) cone is fashioned from Deep Ceramic Composite (DCC) material. This is a sandwich material with an aluminum substrate and thicker ceramic coatings on both sides. The ceramic coatings are deposited by way of an extremely high-tech plasma electrolytic oxidation process. The entire assembly stiffens the cone sufficiently that the cone will not break up at the frequencies that it is designed to reproduce. This means the cones will not break up during normal use, thereby providing a near-ideal pistonic motion. This may partly explain why these were some of the lowest distortion speakers I have ever tested.

The F226Be’s have two 6-1/2” (165 mm) woofers which have the same cone material as the midrange discussed immediately above. The mids and woofers both have optimized motor structures for their specific requirements which improve both the bass and the midrange.

The crossover network is a high-order affair (a/k/a steep slopes). These networks utilize all film capacitors and air-core inductors. The use of high-end parts and steep slopes helps with driver integration between the woofer, mid, and tweeter. Of particular importance in the REVEL design ethos is to have superior integration between the midrange and the tweeter. The drivers, the crossovers, and the waveguide all work in concert to create a seamless blend and one with consistent off-axis response properties. This is the essence of REVEL’s “Secret Sauce”: the consistent power response on and off-axis. It helps their speakers sound their best in a wide variety of rooms and settings.

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers back hookups

The F226Be cabinets are possibly the most inert cabinets of any speaker I have reviewed. These cabinets have curved sidewalls that are formed from contiguous layers of wood and are generously internally braced. These features reduce material and cabinet-related resonances. This was “proven” by wrapping the enclosure with my knuckles. Ouch!

The bass loading is by way of a single large port that is designed with identical flares on each side. The flares are designed by way of a sophisticated computer model and ensure minimal dynamic compression and reduced port noise. The speaker ships with a port plug in case you need to further tune the bass for a specific application.

I also loved the finish of the cabinet. My review samples were a sparkly gray color with contrasting plinth and top plates of metallic black. This was a very sexy look and the contrasting colors added additional interest to the overall appearance. The F226Be’s are available in black, white, metallic, or American walnut. REVEL says they exceed automotive finish quality!

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers back hookups close-up

They have a dual set of heavy-duty binding posts so you can bi-wire or bi-amp the speakers if you are so inclined. Even the input cup has a rugged, industrial appeal with a contrasting color. This further enhanced the overall aesthetic.

The speakers also came equipped with a set of heavy-duty adjustable floor spikes that I used.


The REVEL F226Be’s arrived in two boxes by way of a freight drop shipment. Thankfully, these speakers are not ridiculously large or heavy so getting the boxes into the garage was not too much of an effort. Also, the speakers were competently packaged so they were undamaged. The REVEL boxes open on the side which I find makes it easier when unboxing the speakers but more difficult getting them back in the boxes for their return journey.

There is only the most basic set up remaining. Thankfully, the lower plinth is permanently installed so you only need to install the adjustable floor spikes which are reversible with spikes on one end or you can flip them over and use the rounded end for tile or wooden floors. I used the spikes, four per channel. I was most pleased that the spikes were amply long to penetrate the thick carpet pad in my listening room. Spikes of sufficient length are the exception and not the rule. The spikes are adjustable and then you can lock them once leveled.

I do not typically bi-amp or bi-wire my speakers so I left the shorting straps in and connected my speaker wires with the banana plugs. There are high and low binding posts for those who want to experiment with other hook-up options or bi-amping.

The last thing is the boxes come with port plugs for those who need to plug the ports for in-cabinet installs or if you have a poor acoustic environment. These plugs remained in the shipping crate for this review as my room does not suffer any such ills.

The grilles are magnetic and I kept them on for the majority of the review period.

I placed the speakers in the usual locations for the front mains. REVEL’s Owners’ Manual suggests toe-in such that the speakers are firing on-axis with the listening position. Since I have a larger space and routinely have guests, I do not use that amount of toe-in and stuck with my normal practice of setting the toe so that the speakers converge approximately 5’ beyond the prime seat.

I need to again mention the amazing cabinets. They are the most inert cabinets I can remember with any speaker I have owned or reviewed. And they are gorgeous too. My review sample was gray with black accents and I thought the look was so clean and modern with an industrial flair.

All stereo listening impressions were made while listening over a Pass Labs INT-25 pure Class A integrated. The surround demos involved the use of a 200 wpc Class A/B ATI 7-channel amp.

In Use

The most salient characteristic of these speakers can be simply stated as “accurate”. The team at REVEL works overtime trying to build the most transparent and room-agnostic speakers they can muster. This pursuit can succeed or it could fail. What I mean to say is that some very accurate speakers that test well can also be perceived as dry or lifeless. Some very inaccurate speakers on the other hand are a blast to listen to. Take anything from Zu Audio as an example. My point is that sometimes the pursuit of perfection can spoil the musical experience.

Thankfully, this is not the case with REVEL’s and the F226Be’s still shone with an inner musical light. In my view, their accuracy is a welcome quality that allows them to really communicate the artist’s vision. The F226Be’s cost a fraction of what I paid for my beloved VIVID Kaya 90’s but they are admittedly in the same class. The F226Be’s have lower distortion but slightly less bass extension. Both brands have an extremely flat frequency response and as I mentioned above, I could easily make a case that the REVEL tweeters are sweeter sounding.

Another Land album

In terms of the bass, the F226Be’s have ample extension for most acoustic music but not all. I found the bass lines on “Gentle Warrior” off Dave Holland’s Another Land LP fell short of the kind of bass extension I like to hear. So if I owned a pair of F226Be’s, I would be inclined to pair them with a nice subwoofer to add the extra octave on the low end. That is not to say the speakers had a serious issue with the bass, I just like to feel it a little more than I did in this audition. Bear in mind I have a large room that taxes smaller towers, particularly in the bass.

Dirty Honey album

The F226’s dynamic prowess was nothing short of incredible, especially considering they use conventional drivers. I heard this in spades while streaming “Gypsy” on Dirty Honey’s self-titled EP. What struck me on this song was the realistic attack and decay of the snare and cymbals. It was quite the treat!!

On a Friday Evening album

It all came together while enjoying “Quite Now” off the Bill Evans Trio’s On a Friday Evening album. I enjoyed this album in High-Res streaming off Qobuz (192 kHz, 24-bit FLAC). This was where I was able to just kick back, relax and just fall into the music. I wasn’t worrying about anything and was able to just let the music wash over me. It took me a million miles away, where I could forget the day’s stress and just enjoy a few minutes of musical bliss. The REVEL speakers really did disappear and let the music shine. What a treat.

Rock and Roll Circus performance cd

Our TV purveyor around here is DirecTV. They have a few 4K channels (though just a few). Well, one night I stumbled across a 4K Remaster of the Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus (1968). It was even presented in Dolby Atmos! Shot on film, the visual presentation had a healthy amount of film grain and the colors were stable if maybe a little muted. Sound-wise, it was just what the doctor ordered. If my memory serves, I think this was supposed to be similar (and competitive with?) the Playboy After Dark TV series.

Well, they had quite the lineup with performances by Jethro Tull, the Who, and The Rolling Stones who played like a half dozen of their greatest hits. It really took me back. They also had Yoko Ono on there. Part of her performance sounded as if she were screaming in pain. In all honesty, I never did “get” anything she did. That is until now. Thanks to the REVELs, I really felt her pain and could understand what she was conveying with all her crazy singing. I do not think this epiphany could have happened with lesser speakers.

On The Bench

All my bench tests are done in-room with the speaker placed very far from the walls. I have the capability to test frequency response as well as harmonic distortion.

The REVEL PerformaBe F226Be’s basic frequency response plot is the first one to appear below. This is a pink noise test at 2 meters on-axis. The microphone element was precisely aligned on-axis with the midrange driver.

There are a lot of room effects below 300 Hz. Above this, the F226Be’s demonstrated a classically flat response with some apparent floor bounce at around 500 Hz. The bass extension is excellent with a usable response below about 40 Hz. These speakers would benefit from being supplemented with a nice subwoofer for people who listen to a lot of modern music. Older forms of acoustic and classic rock do not call for a sub.

The treble extension of the F226Be is exemplary. As I stated above, the REVELs’ tweeters are among the best I have heard and they have true extension beyond 20 kHz.

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers pink noice on axis

This next plot is pink noise with the mic 30 degrees offset horizontally still at 2-meter spacing. This off-axis response is more representative of what I was hearing during my listening sessions. This is because I use slight toe-in when the speakers are set in their final resting positions. The team at REVEL has refined their designs with the waveguides, etc. to provide a similar response on and off-axis. It pays off not only with the first reflections but also regarding moderate toe-in.

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers pink noice 30 degrees off axis

The remaining plots are distortion measurements with the mic tip precisely 1’ from the driver under test. I like to measure distortion this way so the room effects won’t have an undue impact on the results.

This first test was 100 dB at 1 kHz. The result was 0.16% THD which is among the best I can recall ever testing. 100 dB’s is quite loud and this level of distortion would be inaudible to the normal human ear.

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers At 2.5 kHz, I got 0.12% THD at 100 dB

At 2.5 kHz, I got 0.12% THD at 100 dB. Excellent!

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing LoudspeakersAt 5 kHz, I got 0.15% THD at 100 dB

At 5 kHz, I got 0.15% THD at 100 dB. Also excellent and also inaudible!

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers The high treble was measured at 10 kHz and measured only 0.15% at 100 dB

The high treble was measured at 10 kHz and measured only 0.15% at 100 dB!

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers The next test was run at 500 Hz and 100 dB, the distortion measured 0.06%.

The next test was run at 500 Hz and 100 dB, the distortion measured 0.06%.

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers Then at 80 Hz and 100 dB, I measured 0.88%.

At 250 Hz and 100 dB, the distortion measured 0.11%.

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers At 40 Hz and 100 dB, I measured 2.86%

Then at 80 Hz and 100 dB, I measured 0.88%.

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers rated to mid-40 Hz in terms of bass extension (-6 dB) and this was more or less consistent with my measurements

At 40 Hz and 100 dB, I measured 2.86%

REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers 40 hz sine wave

The F226Be’s speakers are rated to mid-40 Hz in terms of bass extension (-6 dB) and this was more or less consistent with my measurements. The -10 dB point is rated at 38 Hz. So, as a “torture” test, I played a 38 Hz sine wave at 103 dB. The distortion measurement was just over 10%. When it comes to bass distortion, we typically believe that 10% is when the distortion becomes audible.


REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers featured

The REVEL PerformaBe F226Be Floor-Standing Loudspeakers represent an excellent value when you consider that they perform equal or better than many higher-priced speakers.

  • Flat frequency response
  • Dynamic presentation
  • Very sweet treble
  • Beautiful cabinets
  • Incredible build quality
  • Seductively musical
Would Like To See
  • Nothing

I thoroughly enjoyed my time with this pair of REVEL PerfomaBe F226Be floor-standing speakers. They had an uncanny musicality that was highlighted across a wide and deep soundstage unencumbered by any hint of audible distortion.

I know a lot of people who are into vintage audio and I agree that a lot of old turntables, amplifiers, and preamps can all sound amazing. However, technological advances over the last few decades have improved loudspeaker design and construction. We have better testing regimens, better materials, and amazing computer modeling to help advance these designs. The REVEL line, from top to bottom, is emblematic of what I am explaining. They have super bright engineers and some of the best R&D out there. The execution of everything REVEL is near perfection.

As I mentioned in the review above, these speakers share many of the qualities I hear in my reference VIVD speakers but they can be had at a fraction of the cost. It is quite an achievement. You can build an amazing stereo, 2.1, or surround system choosing speakers from the PerformaBe lineup. The cost would be only moderate in comparison to some other options out there.

The REVEL team keeps improving their speakers with each iteration they release and I can’t wait to hear what they come up with next.