Polk Reserve R700 Floorstanding Speaker Review

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shadyJ

Speaker of the House
Staff member
Polk knocked the ball out of the park with the Legend series which we thought were easily the best speakers that Polk had made to date. However, it wasn’t all that surprising that we found them to be so good given they are one of the largest loudspeaker manufacturer’s flagship product lines. With the resources, expertise, and experience that Polk has at their disposal, the Legend series had no excuse to not be really good. But how good of a speaker can Polk make at half the cost of the Legend series? Will it only be half as good, or will it be ninety percent as good? That is the question we will attempt to answer in our review of the Polk Reserve R700...

READ: Polk Reserve R700 Floorstanding Speaker Review
 
AcuDefTechGuy

AcuDefTechGuy

Audioholic Jedi
Wow. +/- 1.5dB Frequency Response from 200Hz - 20kHz? They look good too.
 
Kvn_Walker

Kvn_Walker

Audioholic Field Marshall
That's amazingly impressive, at that price point!

This is a better speaker than some I've read about at 3 or 4 times the price, but there are people who will pass it over because of the brand name.
 
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Hetfield

Audioholic Samurai
That's amazingly impressive, at that price point!

This is a better speaker than some I've read about at 3 or 4 times the price, but there are people who will pass it over because of the brand name.
That's true, I never heard Polk audio speakers but I had Def Tech for many years and they are owned by the same company. I unjustly assumed they were gonna sound alike or similar. I haven't heard a bad thing about the Reserve line though so I bet they are excellent.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
 
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beaRA

Enthusiast
I think you might be the first to measure the R700! Measurements of the other Reserve speakers have shown consistently excellent performance for the price (R100, R200, R600). Bummer that there is no 3-way center in the line, but you can still get the LSiM 706c on closeout if the L400 is too expensive.
 
Replicant 7

Replicant 7

Audioholic Field Marshall
Polk put out a speaker with no crazy anomalies!:oops: The worm has turned for Polk man. :)
 
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Adam2434

Audioholic Intern
Great measurements on the R700!

James, any plans to test the R400 center?

Curious to see how "bad" the R400 is off-axis, being a 2-way design. I don't think it has been measured by any review site.
 
BoredSysAdmin

BoredSysAdmin

Audioholic Overlord
Polk put out a speaker with no crazy anomalies!:oops: The worm has turned for Polk man. :)
I generally hold( or held) a similar view on Polk - but numbers and graphs don't lie, other than needing a 4-5ohm stable amp, there's nothing to nit-pick about these speakers. I guess they are really turning the dial on quality rather than just making pretty speakers with a famous B&M brands tag.
Well done Polk.

 
ErinH

ErinH

Audioholic General
I'd like to hear this speaker and see if it exhibits the one flaw I heard with the R100 which was a boosted treble that became "too much" at higher volumes, whereas at lower volumes it came across as 'detailed'. This was due to the low-order crossover between the mid and the tweeter which resulted in a +3dB bump in the estimated in-room response and this was clearly audible. The R200 indicates as much based on the data I've seen. But this data of the R700 indicates a better directivity match so I'm assuming it won't exhibit the trait I heard with the R100. If this is the case, then... kudos to Polk, indeed.

Personally speaking, I quote like the look of this speaker.
 
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Warlord
Thank you, Shady, for another great write up.
These look to be a very solid high-entry-level offering.
 
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Danzilla31

Audioholic Spartan
Great writeup Shady! Dang Polk really came out swinging with these. I didn't think they'd measure this well at all.
 
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Danzilla31

Audioholic Spartan
I'd like to hear this speaker and see if it exhibits the one flaw I heard with the R100 which was a boosted treble that became "too much" at higher volumes, whereas at lower volumes it came across as 'detailed'. This was due to the low-order crossover between the mid and the tweeter which resulted in a +3dB bump in the estimated in-room response and this was clearly audible. The R200 indicates as much based on the data I've seen. But this data of the R700 indicates a better directivity match so I'm assuming it won't exhibit the trait I heard with the R100. If this is the case, then... kudos to Polk, indeed.

Personally speaking, I quote like the look of this speaker.
Due to the beaming of the tweeter at 10kHz can you alleviate the brightness of the R100 and R200 with placement and how you toe them in like you can the R700?
 
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shadyJ

Speaker of the House
Staff member
James, any plans to test the R400 center?

Curious to see how "bad" the R400 is off-axis, being a 2-way design. I don't think it has been measured by any review site.
No plans to review the R400. However, there is no way it will be immune to the typical MTM off-axis 'squeeze.' The L400 is the center speaker to get with the R700s.
 
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shadyJ

Speaker of the House
Staff member
Great writeup Shady! Dang Polk really came out swinging with these. I didn't think they'd measure this well at all.
The Legend series measured really well, and these are like a more cost-conscious version of the Legend speakers that even use the same drivers, so I had a hunch they would do well. I'm glad to see my hunch panned out in measurements.
 
Eppie

Eppie

Audioholic Samurai
These look to employ some great technology at that price point. Visions in Canada currently has the R700 for $2600 a pair ($3000 retail). I would also like to see some nicer finish options but they appear to offer great value for the money.
 
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Adam2434

Audioholic Intern
No plans to review the R400. However, there is no way it will be immune to the typical MTM off-axis 'squeeze.' The L400 is the center speaker to get with the R700s.
Yeah, jumping up to the L400 center is an option, but a pricey one relative to the price-performance ratio of the R700 based on your measurements.

I think Polk could have designed a Reserve high performance 3-way center priced at around $700-800 to round out the Reserve Series excellent value proposition. Polk's engineering team wanted a 3-way center in the Reserve Series.

Heck, the Monolith THX center is only $350-400 depending on sale price, so seems like Polk could easily do a Reserve 3-way center for 2x that price, but what do I know... :)
 
MalVeauX

MalVeauX

Senior Audioholic
Polk did release a good 3-way center to match them.

It's a 3rd R700. That's why they're sold as singles. :D

They look sharp. I have lots of Polks. Shame lots of people won't even consider them due to some past branding.

Very best,
 
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Don'tBeJelousAtPete

Audiophyte
It's a good one! If you missed sparkly high's in the RT7 or 9 for that matter (and I did), this is the Polk you, hence our 'trebly' kind was waiting for! But it is from that angle only, still no B&W, Monitor or Focal.
 

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