Revel Salon/Studio and ARC Tube Amps

Just curious about the compatibility of using an ARC tube amp to drive Revel Salon or Studio speakers. I've checked out the Revel web site. To its credit, Revel suggests using a high current/high power amp, thus permitting the inference that using a rock solid, high power SS amp is the preferred amp to use. I recall reading some data about the electrical characteristics of these speakers. As I recall they present a difficult impedance load.

Ok ... it seems like I've answered my own question, but I am curious if anyone actually tried to drive the Salons or Studios with an ARC tube amp and if so, their reactions.

I mention ARC tube amps for two reasons. First, I own an ARC tube amp and like it very much. There's also a natural synergy with the amp and the rest of my ARC gear. So, if I switch out my speakers, I want to keep the ARC gear.

Second, as I've come to better understand, most ARC tube amps use roughly 12 to 14 dbs of negative feedback which tends to make these amps to perform somewhat like a solid state amp. That is, relatively low output impedance for a tube amp and respectable output voltage regulation regardless of speaker impedance.

So for those other A'gon members who have tried this combo, I'd appreciate knowing your thoughts.


I would think it would take the largest ARCs. These speakers take current.....plenty of it.....and can deliver great sound top to bottom. They go surprisingly deep in the bass with very good control and bass tonality. But you'll never know what you are missing in the bass if you use nearly any tube amp.

For sticking with tubes, another great contender, interestingly enough, is also a Harmon product, the JBL 1400 Array, much more tube amp friendly and a best in class speaker. Smooth, detailed, powerful, very deep bass....a steal.
Omsed, I suspected that. Interestingly, the Revel Studios present a somewhat similar impedance plot as my Paradigm S8s (v3), with the main difference being that the S8s are touted as having an efficiency/sensitivity of 92 db. I understand the Revel's are way less efficient/sensitive.

However both share the distinction of manufacturing their own beryllium tweeters in house. I suppose the S8s are the poor mans way in through the back door, but sound terrific. I thought a 150 tube/wpc amp might do a decent job on the Revels. Maybe not. :-(
It would be iffy. The sensitivity is pretty low and they are a 4 ohm load so knock 3db off the rating to get a "real world" equivalent rating at 8 ohms. Very power hungry. You won't find many folks trying that combination, which is why there are no other responses. They are great speakers. But they really don't fit tube amps well.

I'm telling you, go hear JBL 1400.
I have bi amped the Salon2. Use tube gear for the mid/treb and AB or Hypex D for Bass. Extra cost but you can get great sound from these speakers this way.
Lots of used moderate priced amps for sale.
Just watch for input/output impedance matching.