Polk Audio Reserve R200 Bookshelf Speaker Review

4.32 Mixed Usages
4.3 Dialogue & Vocal Accuracy:
4.3 Treble Accuracy:
4.4 Bass Accuracy:
4.3 Imaging & Soundstage:
4.3 Dynamic Range:
Release year: 2021 Rating: 4.4 Warranty: 5 years 1” Pinnacle Ring Radiator 6.5” Turbine cone woofer X-Port stereo speaker usage: music and movies home theater

Polk Audio Reserve R200 is best for audiophiles to seek serious-grade sound quality. It has great stereo separation and open sound field. The X-Port ensure low ends are punchier and enjoying while reducing any ‘chuffing’ noise. They are compact in size and will fit into tight spaces. Use them in small to mid sized rooms and allow the speakers to shine.

Our Verdict

Polk Audio Reserve R200 is an excellent all-in-one speaker under $700. The price isn’t very cheap but advanced engineering and designing in driver, port and cabinet compensates it. Use them as front speakers or rear surrounds. Use it to listen to online music, recordings, CD tracks or movies. The speaker has extremely clear highs that aren’t bright either. Low ends are effortless and powerful.

Since the cost is high, we suggest to go for a 2.0 setup initially. Then upgrade to 2.1, 3.1 or 5.1.2 in future. It is better to choose other speakers from the same brand so that they will integrate and blend it easily.

PROS
  • Excellent bass
  • Hi-Res certified
  • Audiophile grade sound
  • Precise mids
  • Well-designed and build
CONS
  • Expensive
Where to buy

Specification

GENERAL:

Speaker Type Bookshelf Speaker
Number Of Channels 2.0 way speaker
Amplification Type Passive Speaker (External Amp)
Power Source AC Powered

DRIVERS

Drive Unit 2x2
Tweeter Type Pinnacle Ring Radiator
Tweeter Size (inches) 1
Midrange Size (inches) N/A
Midrange Type N/A
Woofer Size (inches) 6.5
Woofer Type Turbine Cone
Other

SPECS

Power Range 30-200W
Sensitivity 86dB
Impedance 8Ω / 6Ω / 4Ω
Frequency Range 51Hz - 38kHz
Crossover Frequencies 3000

CONNECTIVITY:

Speaker Level Input N/A
Speaker Wire Input: Yes
Line Level Input N/A
Digital Input (Optical) N/A
Digital Input (Coaxial) N/A
RCA Input N/A
3.5mm Stereo Analog Input N/A
Aux Input N/A
HDMI Input N/A
Bi-amp Input: N/A
USB Port N/A
Subwoofer Output N/A

WIRELESS FEATURES

Bluetooth N/A
Wi-Fi N/A
Other

CONNECTOR:

Connector Type Nickel-plated 5-Way
Compatible Connector Types bare wire, pin-connectors, spade-lugs, and banana-plugs (single only)
Speaker Wire Compatibility 16AWG

AUDIO QUALITY ( TESTED )

Bass Accuracy: impressive and adequate bass
Dialogue & Vocal Accuracy: clearer voices
Treble Accuracy High ends are clear and airy
Imaging & Soundstage: imaging is excellent and it has immersive soundstage
Dynamic Range: Good dynamic range
Power Handling: Good power handling
Frequency Response: Broad frequency response
Transient Response: Good transient response

BUILD MATERIAL

Enclosure Ported
Finish MDF
Color Black / Walnut / White

SIZE & WEIGHT

Height (inches) 14.1
Width (inches) 7.5
Depth (inches) 13.9
Weight (pounds) 43.4lbs
Recommended Stand Height (inches) 24-28

CONTROL

Handheld Remote N/A
Control by app N/A
Amazon Alexa N/A
Google Assistant N/A

IN THE BOX

Accessories: 2 Bookshelf loudspeakers, 2 Grilles, Owner's Manual, Online Registration
User manual: Yes
Where to buy

Details Review

Design:

Polk Reserve R200 is a passive speaker that is available in three different colors. We love the white enclosure and the drivers are eye-catching. The cabinet is stiff and cross-braced that eliminates any resonance. Polk intentionally designed round corners to ensure broad dispersion with reduced diffraction. It comes with detachable cloth grille but we think it is better off without them. It also has rubber feet that causes it to remain stable in one place.

Performance:

Polk Audio Reserve R200 uses its patented Pinnacle tweeter and Turbine woofer. The speaker is Hi-res certified. It has 1” Ring Radiator tweeter that delivers high ends with optimum clarity. It has a waveguide and enhances dispersion. This design extends the break-up mode and reduces distortion. It has great sound field with broader sweet spot. It has smooth mids, and low ends from 6.5” woofer packs a punch. The woofer is designed to enhance stiffness.

Instruments and voices are loud and clear. On the rear side an exceptionally designed port is present. So there should be a gap between the rear walls and the speaker. The Polk patented X-Port uses Eigentone Filter (ETF) that is designed to minimize any distortion usually present in standard speakers. It boosts the low ends while improving speaker sensitivity. These speakers are non-fatiguing and not harsh sounding. We listened to them for hours without any ear fatigue.

Placement is simple, easy and just like other bookshelf speakers. Place them at such a height that tweeters will be at ear level. Toe-in several times to find the best spot. Use the manual where you will find detailed images with precise measurements. The speakers can produce room-filling sound with wide sound field. When connected to an amp or receiver, set the speakers to small. If there is a subwoofer set the crossover at 50-80 Hz.

Connectivity and control:

This depends on the amplifier or receiver ports and control options. Amplifiers or receivers usually allow to connect TV, CD player, Turntable, PC, etc.  

Use case:

Well designed drivers ensure music and movies are handled very well. These speakers play movies with great effects and clarity. Use them in medium sized rooms but they are also ‘okay’ in large spaces. It is good for 15x20' rooms. That said, we recommend creating at least a 3.1 system with center channel and sub for large rooms. Like, in a 13' by 18' a 3.1 system will be a good choice. Play music genre like classical, jazz, rock through these R200 Polk speakers.

Compatible device:

You can choose from our suggested list or choose by your own: Marantz PM7004, Audio Research VS55, Willsenton R8 tube amplifier, Sansui G-7000 receiver, Marantz NR 1508, Sony receiver STR-DH790, Yamaha AS801, Schiit Vidar amp, Yamaha A-S801, Denon AVR-S960H, Pioneer Elite VSX-LX103, Yamaha TSR-700.

The following speakers can be connected for a theater system: floorstanding loudspeakers (R700/R600/R500), bookshelf loudspeakers (R100), center-channel speakers (R400/R300), LCR loudspeaker (R350), and Dolby Atmos height speaker module (R900). Don’t forget to pair a Polk powered subwoofer.

Cost:

The Polk R200 is a costly bookshelf speaker. If you don’t have an amplifier or want to add additional subwoofer, the cost will increase further.  

FAQ

How to connect turntable to Polk Audio Reserve R200 without any phono preamp?

If you don’t have phono preamp built-in in your turntable, then the amplifier you choose must have preamp built-in into it.

Is subwoofer a must have for Polk Audio Reserve R200?

If the Polk Audio Reserve R200 is used in compact spaces, then you might not need a subwoofer. Users who are using this speaker for general listening purpose can survive without one. But if you are a bass head, a subwoofer is good for you

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