Jump to content
longislander

Revel - "Onstage" or "Audience"?

Recommended Posts

I have the 14-speaker Revel audio system in my '17 MKZ Select. Overall I think it's just OK (I haven't heard either the base or Ultima systems so I have no basis for comparison).

Anyway today I was playing with the sound settings trying to hear the difference between the QuantumLogic Surround Sound Onstage vs. Audience. Not much of a difference to my ears but I thought the Onstage setting sounded a little crisper and less muddy.

Your comments, opinions, etc.?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been using the Audience setting just because I'd rather hear music from the audience as opposed to being in the middle of the stage. I'll have to compare the two and see.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have the same system in my Continental and am NOT impressed with it at all.   In my opinion, the THX sound system that I had in my MKS was much better.

 

I am not an audiophile so please excuse this question if it is a stupid one:  If a song is not recorded in "Surround Sound" is there any way to make is play back in surround sound?  I cannot tell a lick of difference whether is it onstage, audience or off.

 

As for this base Revel system, I think it sounds tinny.  Even with the base turned as high as it will go, it seems to lack base.  Furthermore, neither the volume control nor the speed compensated volume control  allow for fine enough adjustments.   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I actually change between the settings from time to time, as it depends on the type of music I am playing. Some get neither, some sound nicer with Onstage, and others with Audience. I'm okay with that since it gives a variety of aspects to enjoy with different music. Some may prefer to "set it and forget it" though, whereas I change my music output settings around frequently.

 

However, my feedback comes from having Revel Ultima to which in my opinion, there IS a big difference in quality. The times I have had rentals with the 14-Speaker Revel did not sound any better or equal to, my 12 Speaker Sony System found in Titanium Ford Fusions.

 

If the Revel 14 Speaker is not the real base sound system, well...I guess I am glad I haven't really heard the actual base sound system yet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If the Revel 14 Speaker is not the real base sound system, well...I guess I am glad I haven't really heard the actual base sound system yet.

You seriously didn't know that the Revel system is an $1,180 option? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am an audiophile, and the Revel 14 speaker system sounds stunning to me. Half volume is about as loud as I can take. One reviewer said it's the best OEM sound system he had heard in a car under $100K. So I don't know where all this is coming from.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have the same system in my Continental and am NOT impressed with it at all.   In my opinion, the THX sound system that I had in my MKS was much better.

 

I am not an audiophile so please excuse this question if it is a stupid one:  If a song is not recorded in "Surround Sound" is there any way to make is play back in surround sound?  I cannot tell a lick of difference whether is it onstage, audience or off.

 

As for this base Revel system, I think it sounds tinny.  Even with the base turned as high as it will go, it seems to lack base.  Furthermore, neither the volume control nor the speed compensated volume control  allow for fine enough adjustments.   

 

There are a number of ways to process 2-channel stereo into multiple speakers. Revel has some proprietary technology to do this that leaves the original signal intact.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You seriously didn't know that the Revel system is an $1,180 option?

 

Oh I knew of it being 2nd tier in cost, but I did not even consider testing the base system after comparing standard revel with ultima. But yeah, in my opinion I wouldnt have paid that when it doesnt sound to surpass the past MKZ THX and Fusion Sony system. Might seem odd but thats how I perceived it.

 

But sound systems are like fitting clothes, always try them out before buying...

Edited by Zalvern

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am an audiophile, and the Revel 14 speaker system sounds stunning to me. Half volume is about as loud as I can take. One reviewer said it's the best OEM sound system he had heard in a car under $100K. So I don't know where all this is coming from.

That sounds more like a description of the Revel Ultima system, not the "plain" Revel.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Ultima system is great and does get good reviews. The lesser Revel system has been criticized by many.

 

To Zalvern's point about trying it before buying it, I agree. It was the ONLY feature I didn't try! Since I am not an audiophile at all, I wasn't very fussy but decided to order it since my MKS had the THX system. In reality, it is no better than the Sony system in my wife's Taurus...at least to my ears. In fact, I don't think it is as good. The Ultima system was not a standalone option so I didn't consider it.

Edited by brucelinc

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have the base stereo and it’s awful. Especially listening to Sirius.

 

Wish I had at least the Revel 14 system.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I tried the On Stage and didn't prefer having so much of the sound mix behind me. Otherwise, both sound modes excellent to my ears.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have the Revel 14.  To me, it sounds best with those options shut off entirely.

 

Also, IMO, it's superior to the THX II in 2014.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My complaints with the lesser Revel system center around 2 things - lack of bass and poor adjustability of volume.    With THX system in my MKS or the Sony system in our Taurus, I would have the bass around mid-point.  With the Revel, I have it as high as it will go and it still lacks the bass I would expect.

 

With the Revel system in my Conti, volume 6 is not quite loud enough but volume 7 is too loud.   The THX and Sony systems allow for finer adjustments.   Similarly, the speed compensated volume only has 3 settings compared to many more with the THX system.  Level 1 makes no discernible difference, 2 only a slight difference and 3 is way too much.  I can adjust the sound level for front seat passengers by moving more to the front or rear but that upsets the overall balance of sound.

 

My dealer acknowledged that they had gotten other comments about this and a Ford insider on BON also mentioned it.  Fortunately, the sound system is one of the least important things to me so I am not overly concerned about it but since we have a thread related to the system, I am just sharing my thoughts.   Others obviously are quite satisfied with it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the Revel Ultima is what actually ended up bringing me to the MKZ.  I was NOT impressed with the sony system in the Fusion Sport I test drove.  The bass was incredibly overpowering and it was very boomy and kind of muddy.  If you tried to tone it down it would disappear.  I'm not a bass head anymore.  I like the bass to be noticeable but it should compliment the rest of the system as well.  I should be able to clearly hear the vocals and how the individual is plucking his guitar.  Yes I'm an audio snob.  I have over 1000 dollars of audio sitting on my computer desk right now.  That's 2 pairs of headphones and my amp/dac combo.  I don't know about the Base Revel system but the Ultima is absolutely stunning. 

 

The real reason to reply to this thread though was that a lot has to do with your source.  If you have a crap source then it's going to be crap going out to the speakers.  I vehemently avoid MP3 as much as possible.  My music are all FLAC so that it's the exact copy of the recording on the CD.  Lossless audio.  MP3 files are compressed and they cut out what the algorithms deem unnecessary.  Either ultra low or high frequencies and such.  That's how it shrinks the size down.  It can also alter the sound though to have more bass or take some away when it does it.   If you're streaming well then it's gonna be garbage no matter what.  I will still stream mind you but you can easily tell the difference.

 

Now as for the finer adjustments I can't attest to that.  I have only a couple hours with these systems so far and it was in someone else's car as the dealership didn't have a Ultima on their lot when I came by.  So it was multiple sittings from one of the sales managers cars.  He mostly listens to jazz.  When it comes to music though it's extremely subjective.  Everyone loves different things and that's alright.  But you should always try before you buy something.  For me the Ford Sony System is just not up to par.  The revel is a step above it but the Ultima definitely blew me away. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am an audio nut myself and I use to work at a home and car stereo shop for years when I was younger I have also built and designed many an award winning car audio systems for myself as well as customers and quality stuff sound wise not the big "BOOM!" "BOOM!" Stuff you hear going down the street. My 2017 MKZ has the Revel Ultuma system and I feel it is one of the best "Factory" systems out there. Set on the factory standard setting I find the upper midrange a bit "Honky" and the treble at times can be a bit forward so I have both cut back one notch I also have all of the settings set for audience or onstage off as I find I never seem to like the way it changes the sound of my music.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×