Wharfedale announce new, premium Reva speaker series
Polishing the diamonds
Hi-Fi NewsWharfedale is launching a new, premium range of speakers as step-up alternative to its popular Diamond 200 Series.
The range consists of two standmount models (Reva-1 and Reva-2), two floorstanding speakers (Reva-3 and Reva-4) and a centre speaker for home cinema systems (Reva-C), all combining a 25mm textile dome tweeter with one or more woven glass fibre bass/midrange cones.
The compact Reva-1 incorporates a 115mm bass/mid driver, while the Reva-2 uses a larger 125mm unit. The two floorstanding models sport 2.5-way configurations, combining a 115mm midrange driver with two 125mm bass/mid cones in the Reva-3 and a pair of 150mm bass/mid drivers in the Reva-4. The Reva-C is a two-way design, incorporating twin 115mm bass/mid drivers.
A vital part of the design of the Diamond 200 Series is the sandwich construction of its cabinet panels. Research carried out during the speakers’ development analysed how specific combinations of particleboard and MDF react acoustically. This combination of multiple layers of differing density resulted in a significant reduction of panel resonance and coloration caused by ‘cabinet hear-through’.
With this winning formula tried and tested, a similar approach was carried out with Reva, this time adding additional layers to the matrix. This multi-layer wood combination is then bonded together in a heated press to form the structure of Reva’s curved panels. The result, says Wharfedale, is more than just aesthetically pleasing, achieving a strong, low-resonance structure that further reduces the occurrence of sonically deleterious internal standing waves, whilst virtually eradicating sonic bleed-through from inside the cabinet.
Another technology developed from the Diamond 200 Series is Wharfedale’s signature Slot-Loaded Distributed Port. Instead of a conventional circular reflex port, all Reva models incorporate a port that exits at the base of the speaker cabinet, loaded by a slot that is created by the plinth. This is designed to equalise the air pressure to mimic that inside the cabinet, allowing smooth transition between the pressure variation in the cabinet and the low frequency sound developed in the room. This, they tell us, not only reduces the distortion that is typical of ported bass reflex systems, it also increases the port’s efficiency
For the Reva Series, a proprietary glass-fibre weave was engineered for the bass and midrange cones to match the acoustic properties of the new cabinet. The finely knit cross-weave produces an ultra-rigid yet lightweight diaphragm, able to react to the smallest of musical transients with great accuracy. A phase plug controls the output from the centre of the diaphragm, avoiding frequency cancellation and enabling a smoother crossover to the treble unit, while a cast alloy chassis ensures dynamic rigidity.
The Reva Series’ 25mm treble unit sports a new, fine-weave textile dome, damped via a special coating and powered by a neodymium magnet fitted with a finned heat sink to reduce dynamic compression.
The drivers are combined acoustically via 4th order Linkwitz-Riley precision crossover networks, developed through computer modeling and hundreds of hours of listening tests.
Peter Comeau, Director of Acoustic Design at Wharfedale’s parent company IAG, said: “The Reva project was a natural extension of the research we undertook when designing the Diamond 200 Series. We developed many effective techniques and technologies but could only take their implementation so far given the cost constraints imposed by Diamond’s low retail prices. Reva enabled us to develop this work further, taking advantage of increased budgets to raise the bar both sonically and aesthetically. The result is a range of speakers that is attractive to the eye, easy to accommodate in a wide range of rooms and capable of delivering music and movie soundtracks with energy, precision and scale, drawing the listener into each and every performance.”
The Wharfedale Reva Series is available from May in a choice of three lacquered finishes: piano black, piano white and deep rosewood. An additional walnut finish will follow later in the summer. RRPs are as follows:
Reva-1: £449.95 per pair Reva-3: £999.95 per pair Reva-C: £399.95 Reva-2: £599.95 per pair Reva-4: £1299.95 per pair.
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