The Rhythm2’s rear panel was devoid of the Sub30’s myriad switches and tiny, hard-to-read labels. What remain are: a power switch just above the inlet for the AC cord; a three-position turn-on switch (Auto/On/Trigger); a gain dial; right- and left-channel inputs; high-pass outputs (XLR, RCA); a single output for driving other subwoofers; in and out jacks for a 12V trigger; and a USB port.
Powerful, massive, and expensive, Revel’s Ultima Rhythm2 subwoofer ($10,000) swept me off my feet when I first saw it in Harman International’s suite at the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show. It outsizes, by 49 lbs and 2.6 cubic feet, Revel’s previous flagship model, the Ultima Sub30, which I reviewed in the November 2004 issue. Its specs read like no other sub’s: 196 lbs; 18″ cast-frame woofer; dual 4″ voice-coils; 4kW peak power from twin internal amplifiers that generate 1kW RMS; 115dB peak acoustic output; a fully configurable, high-resolution, 10-band parametric equalizer (PEQ); an internal crossover with high- and low-pass outputs; and PC-based setup via USB. The Rhythm2’s patent-pending design is said to let just enough air move in and out of the cabinet to prevent any distortion-inducing pressure due to heating of the voice-coils. And its veneer, shape, beveled top edges, and bottom plinth exude the quality found in Revel’s top-of-the-line floorstanding speaker, the Ultima Salon2, with which I was familiar.
With the computer connected to the Rhythm2 via USB, LFO independently adjusts the sub’s low- and high-pass crossover filter settings from 50 to 100Hz, in 1Hz increments; selects among six filter slopes (first-, second-, fourth-, or eighth-order, Butterworth or Linkwitz-Reilly); and delays the subwoofer’s output (up to 631ms) to time-align it with the main speakers.As an alternate to all those knobs and switches, the Rhythm2 is controlled by Revel’s Low Frequency Optimization (LFO) software, installable in the buyer’s computer. LFO also manages the Rhythm2’s PEQ to precisely adjust the main speakers’ frequency response up to 300Hz, and “compensates for room-related regularities by applying a corresponding correction curve.”
Revel shipped me one Ultima Rhythm2 and two Ultima Salon2s. A truck with a lift gate arrived with two pallets: 417 lbs of Salon2 on one, 243 lbs of Rhythm2 on the other. The handlers lugged the reinforced cartons into my house, up the short flight of stairs to my listening room, unpacked all three speakers, and placed them in the middle of the room.
They also left a small pile of materials near my listening chair: the Rhythm2’s removable grille, detachable power cord, and 10-page quick-start guide. But where were the subwoofer optimization manual, the LFO software, and the CD-ROM full of test signals? It turns out that all manuals, test signals, target curves, and setup software can be downloaded from Revel’s website, where they can be updated as often as needed.
I busied myself with placing and connecting the three Revels. Following the quick-start guide, I slid the sub into the room’s right front corner, and the Salon2s into the spots usually occupied by my Quad ESL-989s. This put the Salon2s’ inner edges 7′ 6″ apart, their outer edges 2′ 10″ from the sidewalls, and their front baffles 7′ 2″ from my ears when I sat down. The Rhythm2’s front baffle was 4′ behind the right-channel Salon2, and 9′ 2″ from my ears when seated. I listened to the Rhythm2 without its grille.
I ran a pair of balanced interconnects from the outputs of my Bryston BP26 preamplifier to the Rhythm2’s inputs, and another pair from the Rhythm2’s high-pass outputs to the inputs of a pair of Theta Digital Prometheus monoblocks (review to be published next month). Pure Silver Cable R50 double-ribbon speaker cables connected the amplifiers’ speaker terminals to the Salon2s. I downloaded and installed Revel’s pink-noise test tones, target response curves, and LFO software on my Lenovo X220 laptop, which runs Windows 7, and used a 6′ USB cable from my printer to connect the computer to the Rhythm2. I started the LFO software, turned on the Rhythm2, and clicked the Connect button on the LFO main screen. The software’s connection-status indicator turned green and identified the sub as “Rhythm2,” telling me that LFO now controlled the sub. I then set the sub’s output level to 19dB, as suggested by the LFO manual.
The Master’s Calibration
Several days later, Kevin Voecks, Revel’s New Product Development Manager, arrived to optimize its setup for my room. This involved matching the sub’s frequency response to a series of proprietary target room-response curves that had been generated using JBL’s Adaptive Room Correction and Optimization System (ARCOS). Voecks stated that these curves provide the “key to good room integration” for the Rhythm2, and allow LFO to “behave like ‘ARCOS lite’ in some respects.”
To take his measurements for optimization, Voecks used my Studio Six iTestMic, a cost-effective, professional-grade test and measurement microphone that plugs directly into my iPhone 4’s 30-pin connector, and which John Atkinson also recommends. The combo has proven precise enough to accurately measure, optimize, and match subwoofers to main speakers. Studio Six’s Audio Tools app, available from iTunes, provides the Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) programming needed to compute and graph the mike’s output.
Fig.1 Revel LFO, display of target curve, equalizer inputs, and resulting FFT room-measurement curve for right-channel Revel Ultima Salon2 (range: +20dB to 30dB).
Fig.2 Revel LFO, display of target curve, equalizer input, and resulting FFT room-measurement curve for Revel Ultima Rhythm2 subwoofer (range: +20dB to 30dB).
Before taking any measurements, Voecks used the LFO software to set the Rhythm2’s internal crossover filters to 80Hz for both the high- and low-pass filters, and their slopes to 24dB/octave, based on his previous experience designing and optimizing the sub’s performance with the Salon2s. He also set the sub’s infrasonic high-pass filter to Normal, which rolls off the Rhythm2’s output below 20Hz. Because the sub’s intrinsic equalization boosts its amplifier’s drive as the audio signal’s frequency descends, large but inaudible woofer excursions below 20Hz can drive the sub’s twin amplifiers into clipping.
Voecks defeated the Rhythm2’s output-level adjustment in favor of the more precise and more reliable settings available via LFO. He later discovered that the rear panel’s manual output control shut off the sub when touched. He told me that, to fix this problem, the dealer would simply replace the rear panel and its electronics with a new assembly without having to ship the sub back to the factory.
Once he’d made all of the set-and-forget adjustments, Voecks played a digital file of uncorrelated pink noise (available from Revel’s website) that he’d burned to a CD-R, and matched the output levels of the satellite speakers to the Rhythm2 using Audio Tools’ SPL meter. Then he used the app’s FFT module to measure each speaker’s acoustic output for one minute at each of five different locations grouped around the top of my listening chair. These were then averaged, stored on my iPhone, and wirelessly imported to the LFO software.
Fig.3 Revel Ultima Salon2s, full range, no subwoofer or equalization, 1?3-octave response in LG’s listening room (5dB/vertical div.).
Fig.4 Revel Ultima Salon2s with Ultima Rhythm2 subwoofer, 1?3-octave response in LG’s listening room (5dB/vertical div.).
Voecks then displayed the averaged FFT room-response data on my laptop in LFO, which showed the results from 10Hz to 4kHz. Using LFO’s 10-band PEQ, he located the center frequencies of the room’s nodes, reduced the levels at those frequencies, then fine-tuned the quality factors (Qs) of those reductions. Using the PEQ, he matched the resulting curves to predetermined target curves (fig.1), then adjusted the subwoofer’s room response to better fit the specific target curve (fig.2).
When Voecks had gone, I checked the Salon2s’ full-range room response with Audio Tools’ Real Time Analysis (RTA) module by bypassing the subwoofer and its internal crossover. The RTA module is optimized for the range covered by subwoofers, and so is most accurate in the range of 20Hz1kHz, above which the mike’s response falls off. The Salon2s’ low-frequency room response, when the floorstanders were run full range, showed a small peak at 250Hz, a dip at 125Hz, another peak at 63Hz, and a gentle rise below 40Hz (fig.3).
I reinserted in the signal path the Rhythm2 and its optimized crossover and PEQ settings, then repeated the room-response RTA measurements. The resulting graph was much flatter from 25Hz to 1kHz (fig.4).
Over the next two months, I listened to many recordings of singers, pipe organs, and film soundtracks. I began by reducing the Ultima Rhythm2’s output by 2dB, to 21dB because I didn’t want to lose the inherent bass power and extension of the Ultima Salon2s. These full-range speakers have produced some of the best deep-bass extension and heft I’ve heard in my room, and it was unclear to me what more the Rhythm2 could add.
Because some internal crossovers produce audible effects, I checked to hear if the Rhythm2’s internal electronic crossover was altering the sound of the high-pass signal driving the Salon2s. Try as I might, I couldn’t hear the Rhythm2’s crossover. Whether I ran the Salon2s full range and used the Rhythm2 for reinforcement, or passed the audio signal through the sub’s crossover, the tonal characteristics of my system didn’t change. I heard no discontinuities between the speakers and the subwoofer even with solo-piano recordings. The light, lyrical quality of Keith Jarrett’s playing in “True Blues,” from The Carnegie Hall Concert (CD, ECM 1989/90), didn’t change when the subwoofer was added. Passing the audio signal through the Rhythm2 had no apparent impact on the Salon2s’ midrange and upper-bass response. All the things that make the Salon2s’ bass so engaging when played by themselves remained when the Rhythm2 was added.
Next, I checked the effects of different subwoofer-output levels. As noted above, I’d lowered the Rhythm2’s output from 19 to 21dB using LFO. The system’s musical balance was now more refined, but my bass-rich recordings had become less involving. I restored the sub’s output to the 19dB level Kevin Voecks had originally set. This produced an immediate and gratifying effect. Organ-pedal notes became powerful and stirring while continuing to be articulate, detailed, fast, and well defined. Subwoofer and main speakers played as one, with seamless integration. The Salon2s’ musicality that I had noted in my original review remained, but the Rhythm2 significantly increased room lock, sense of pressure, pitch definition, and stirring realism in the deepest bassall improvements I had thought not possible.
I checked the lowest-frequency bands of the half-stepspaced chromatic scale on John Atkinson’s Editor’s Choice (CD, Stereophile STPH016-2). These were sharply defined and clearly heard, as were the 40, 31, and 25Hz 1/3-octave warble tones on that disc. The 20Hz band was not only audible, it produced a strong pressure wave that seemed to overpower the room.
I love pipe-organ recordings, and began my listening sessions with one of my favorites: JA’s private digital recording of the Toccata of Widor’s Organ Symphony 5, played by Jonas Nordwall on the organ of the First United Methodist Church of Portland, Oregon (24-bit/88.2kHz AIFF file). I was not disappointed: the deepest pedal notes were reproduced with unexpected power and mass, stirring my emotions in new and unexpected ways. The 32Hz pedals had unusual weight, solidity, and room lock, lifting Audio Tools’ 25 and 32Hz display bars way over the other frequencies in an RTA room-response measurement. I held my breath during the thunderous pedal chords in Shostakovich’s Passacaglia, from Christopher Herrick’s Organ Fireworks IV (CD, Hyperion CDA66605), as they produced intense room lock and pressurized the air; was delighted at the heft and majesty of Walton’s Coronation March, “Crown Imperial,” from Scott Dettra’s Majestus: The Great Organ of Washington’s National Cathedral (CD, Loft LRCD-1114); and was thrilled and slightly frightened by the massive pedal note that concludes James Busby’s performance of Herbert Howells’s Master Tallis’s Testament, from Pipes Rhode Island (CD, Riago 101). I both heard and felt the different pedal ranks that underpin Gnomus, from Jean Guillou’s performance of his own transcription of Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition (CD, Dorian DOR-90117). The soft yet distinctly different organ notes played as the Turtle Creek Chorale, led by Timothy Seelig, sing John Rutter’s anthems Lord, Make Me an Instrument of Thy Peace and A Gaelic Blessing (CD, Reference RR-57CD), were revelatory. I delighted as I heard the single massive, sustained organ chord rumble below a three-dimensional sonic image of the chorus.
The lack of strain or distortion in the deep-bass notes allowed the Rhythm2 to maintain its superb pitch definition when reproducing the sounds of several different ranks of organ pipes. I easily was able to follow the different pitches in the descending scales at the end of the Shostakovich Passacaglia, and to distinguish among similar-sounding instruments (cello, synthesizer, contrabassoon) in “Caravan Moves Out,” from Philip Glass’s score for Kundun (CD, Nonesuch 79460-2). With the Salon2s, the Rhythm2 created the full dynamics of the swirling mix of synthesizer, bass drum, chimes, and blocks in “Attack on Ryan’s House,” from James Horner’s score for Patriot Games (CD, RCA 66051-2) while keeping the sound of each instrument distinct. I heard and felt each deep bass beat viscerally as a punch in the chest. The Revel sub let me follow Jerome Harris’s soft but careful electric bass as it weaves through “The Mooche,” from his Rendezvous (CD, Stereophile STPH013-2).
The Rhythm2’s crossover was extremely clean at low and high output levels, not detracting in any way from the Salon2s’ celebrated soundstaging, naturalness of timbres, clarity, or transparency. If anything, the Salon2s’ soundstaging and dynamics improved. Transients were faster and more lifelike. I played Stevie Nicks’s smoky rendition of “Silver Springs,” from Fleetwood Mac’s The Dance (CD, Reprise 46702-2)sure enough, her sultry voice was lifelike and three-dimensional, with no trace of upper-bass bloat. Lyle Lovett’s voice was completely natural, clear, and free of bloat or nasality in his cover of the Grateful Dead’s “Friend of the Devil,” on Deadicated (CD, Arista RCD 8689).
Recordings featuring electric bass and synthesizer became more involving than ever. Wes Phillips had taught me that the opening of “Deeper Wells,” from Emmylou Harris’s Spyboy (CD, Eminent EM-25001-2), is a torture test for speakers because the voices are so easily drowned out by the deep, swelling, rumbling, groaning electric bass. The Rhythm2 navigated this vortex with ease, letting the other instruments and Harris’s voice be clearly heard. The dense, throbbing heartbeat that surges under “Breathe,” in a DSD remastering of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon (SACD/CD, EMI 82136-2), was riveting. Michael Arnopol’s double bass in “Too Rich for My Blood,” from Patricia Barber’s Café Blue (CD, Premonition 90760-2), and in “Use Me,” from her Companion (CD, Premonition 90761-2), was driving and pulsatile.
Percussion instruments had snap and pace, and bristled with jaw-droppingly fast transients while retaining their musical integrity. Drum solos were reproduced with slam and momentum, and no sign of the compression or grain that can blur rim shots. In his review of Nola’s Metro Grand Reference Gold loudspeaker, JA found that Mark Walker’s driving tom-tom solo at the end of Patricia Barber’s “Too Rich for My Blood” is a good test of a speaker’s ability to reproduce the rich timbres of drums, and the Revel Ultima combo of Rhythm2 and Salon2s did a terrific job with this recording. The bass drum that punctuates John Williams’s Liberty Fanfare, from Lowell Graham and the National Symphonic Winds’ Winds of War and Peace (CD, Wilson Audiophile WCD-8823), had huge mass and vibrated the room, but remained tight and controlled. For the first time, I sensed that the bass drum may have been recorded in a different space from the other instrumentsit sounded somewhat more reverberant, with a distinct timbre to the drum head that I hadn’t noticed before. David Bowie’s “Putting Out Fire,” from the soundtrack of Cat People (CD, MCA MCAD-1498), played with full dynamic range extending from the singer’s opening soft whisper to the tear-the-house-down chorus. Bowie’s close-miked voice (left of center), the electric bass (center), and a rasping, cat-like scratching noise (right) all gave the music tremendous jump and pace.
Recordings of other instruments with prominent low-frequency content were stunning and exciting. The soft, slow, barely noticeable pulse of the bass drum in “Cosmo . . . Old Friend,” from Horner’s score for Sneakers (CD, Columbia CK 53146), took on sinister weight and solidity without blurring. David Hudson’s didgeridoo throbbed, burned, and rumbled in “Rainforest Wonder,” from his Didgeridoo Spirit (CD, Indigenous Australia IA2003D). I easily heard and felt dense pressure from the sustained low C that underpins the segment from Strauss’s Also sprach Zarathustra on Erich Kunzel and the Cincinnati Pops’ Time Warp (CD, Telarc CD-80106). It vibrated the floor, shook the room, and pulsed the air while giving no auditory clue as to its source. The next track on this disc, Jerry Goldsmith’s “Star Trek (The Movie): Main Theme,” opens with a bass-drum whack that rocked my room with a massive thud. Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring, performed by the Minnesota Orchestra under Eiji Oue (176kHz/24-bit file, Reference HRx-70), also showed the Rhythm2’s great dynamic range, intertwining the more delicate reeds with explosive bass drum and timpani in Adoration of the Earth and Dance of the Earth.
The sub also delivered the shamelessly excessive but hypnotic bass boost in electronic dance music. I identified my favorite DJ mixes and remixes from the Sirius XM Radio’s channel 53 (“Chill”), and then download them from Amazon or Beatport. These included: J Boogie Dubtronic Sciences’s surging mix of “Le Sangre;” and Mura Masa’s dense “Miss You” on Klangkuenstler’s Saint-Germain-De-Pres Café, Vol.16. The Rhythm2 alternated the raw, twisted growling midbass notes with thunderous synth pulses on Skrillex’s “Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites” mix on Srillex: Greatest Hits and Remixes (CD, Atlanti 1/2 4607147900000). I played these downloads at astonishingly high levels, but the system handled everything without distortion, producing clean, dense, massive beats that got me up and dancing.
I compared the Revel Ultima Rhythm2 ($10,000) with the Velodyne DD-18 ($4999), JL Audio Fathom f113 ($4300), and SVS SB13 Ultra ($1599) subwoofers. While all are different types of sealed-box design, only the Revel and Velodyne have built-in high-pass filters. Unlike the Revel, the JLA and Velodyne offer automatic equalization. All three comparison subwoofers cost considerably less than the Rhythm2, and come with more accessories.
However, the Ultima Rhythm2 excelled as no other sub has in my large listening room, delivering the music’s full dynamic range, producing the densest output, and causing pressure waves and definition of the deepest notes. Its room-optimization options were far more complete than any of the other systems, especially because its PEQ could simultaneously manage 10 different room-response peaks. A $12,200 system comprising two JLA Fathom f113s subs and a Bryston 10B-SUB outboard electronic crossover allowed my Quad ESL-989s to produce in my large room a wider, more three-dimensional illusion of a soundstage, and with deeper bass extension, than could a single Rhythm2but at greater cost and system complexity. Of these four models, only the Rhythm2 could produce a sensation of dense, turbulent air pressure from recordings of organ-pedal notes. I found myself more emotionally involved, more excited, more shaken by the Rhythm2 than by any of the other subs.
How did the Rhythm2 blend with the Quad electrostatics? I set the Rhythm2’s high- and low-pass filters to 80Hz, 24dB/octave, and reduced its output by 2dB. The Rhythm2 matched the Quads very well, the outputs of all three blending seamlessly. Relieved of low-bass duties, the Quads now produced a wider dynamic range before their protection circuits were triggered. As with the Ultima Salon2s, I couldn’t hear the Ultima Rhythm2’s crossover with the Quads.
The Revel Ultima Rhythm2’s musicality and power are exceptional, with a unique ability to deliver a powerful performance in a large listening room. Its deep bass has tremendous weight and slam, yet can turn on a dime. Its pitch definition and low distortion revealed important timbres in musical instruments and bass lines that greatly increased my listening enjoyment. Its internal crossover is the cleanest I’ve heard in a subwoofer, allowing the satellite speakers to play with no coloration or any diminution of their reproductions of the space, width, or depth of soundstaging. More than anything, the Rhythm2 increased my involvement in the music, made it more fun to listen to, and stirred deeper feelings than I’d felt before. It confirmed Robert Harley’s comment: “there is something about bass extensionwhen done rightthat opens up a whole new musical vista” (footnote 1).
The Rhythm2’s setup tools have a sophistication, flexibility, and precision that reveal its pro-audio origins. I found that its high-pass filter, crossover electronics, and versatile equalizer left no sonic fingerprints on the music as I successfully matched it with both Quad electrostatic panels and Revel’s own Ultima Salon2 dynamic speakers.
Any concerns? At $10,000, the Rhythm2 is the most expensive subwoofer I have reviewed, and brings to mind a comment by Harry Partch, the iconoclastic composer and instrument inventor, who wrote, in the liner notes to A Glimpse into the World of Harry Partch: 27 Unique Instruments (LP, Columbia MS-20576), “Adequate playback equipment is absolutely essential, which means that the poorer generally are not privileged to experience a rippling through their backsides by an art form.” For this nosebleed price, one could argue that Revel should include a printed LFO instruction manual, a USB cable, and an iTestMic, if not an individual optimization by Kevin Voecks. Others may miss the convenience of a handheld remote control or built-in automated room optimization. Then there are the sub’s size and weightit’s just too big to be shoved under a table to appease a spouse, and no decorator can make it disappear.
But when the Ultima Rhythm2 is set up correctly, its musicality, bass power, extension, room lock, speed, pitch definition, clarity, punch, and momentum are amazing. I heard deep-bass notes and felt pressure waves I never knew my recordings possessed. It stirred so many emotions because I felt the musicorgan pedals, double bass solos, film scoresas tremendously involving. If you buy a Rhythm2, be sure to invest some time in setting it up. But if you do, be warned: Once you’ve experienced its power and majesty, you’ll find it hard to do without. Highly recommended, especially for large listening rooms.
Footnote 1: From Robert Harley’s review of the Muse Model 18 subwoofer, in the July 1991 issue.
Sidebar 1: Specifications
Description: Powered subwoofer in aperiodic enclosure. Drive-unit: 18″, forward-firing aluminum cone with dual 4″-diameter voice coils, neodymium magnets, and cast frame. V-Max: 1.7″. Rear-panel inputs: R & L, balanced (XLR) and single-ended (RCA), USB, 12V trigger. Rear-panel outputs: high-pass output (XLR & RCA), 12V trigger. Rear-panel controls: Gain, Power Mode (Auto/On/Trigger). Low- and high-pass filters: adjustable, 50100Hz, in 1Hz steps. Slopes: first, second, fourth, or eighth-order Butterworth; fourth- or eighth-order Linkwitz-Riley, user-programmable with Revel software. True digital delay up to 631msec (217″). Built-in parametric equalizer: 10-band, fully configurable. Frequency response: 18100Hz, ±3dB. Peak acoustic output: 115dB, 105dB SPL at 30Hz at 1m at 100dB. Setup: personal computer via USB. Accessories: power cord, speaker grille, quick-start guide. Setup software (downloadable from Revel website): Revel Low-Frequency Optimizer (LFO) v.1.5, Revel LFO Pink Noise Test Tone file, target frequency-response curves.
Dimensions: 27.9″ (709mm) W by 24.6″ (625mm) H by 27.9″ (714mm) D. Weight: 196 lbs (89kg).
Finishes: High-Gloss Black, Mahogany Veneer.
Serial number of unit reviewed: C1297-00063.
Price: $10,000. Approximate number of dealers: 185. Warranty: 5 years, parts & labor, fully transferable.
Manufacturer: Revel, Harman International Industries, 8500 Balboa Drive, Northridge, CA 91329. Tel: (888) 692-4171, (516) 584-0300. Web: www.revelspeakers.com.
Sidebar 2: Associated Equipment
Analog Sources: Linn Sondek turntable & Lingo power supply & Ittok tonearm; Spectral moving-coil cartridge; Day-Sequerra 25th Anniversary FM Reference tuner.
Digital Sources: Bryston BCD-1 CD player, BDP-2 media player, BDA-1 DAC.
Preamplifier: Bryston BP26, Bryston 10B-SUB outboard electronic crossover.
Power Amplifiers: Theta Digital Prometheus monoblocks, Mark Levinson No.334.
Loudspeakers: Quad ESL-989, Revel Ultima Salon2.
Subwoofers: JL Audio Fathom f113, SVS SB13-Ultra, Velodyne DD-18+.
Cables: Digital: WireWorld Starlight Coaxial. Interconnect: Mark Levinson Silver, Red Rose Silver One, Totem Acoustic Sinew (single-ended), Pure Silver Cable, Bryston (balanced). Speaker: QED X-Tube 400, Pure Silver Cable R50 biwire double ribbon, Ultralink Excelsior 6N OFHC, Coincident Speaker Technology CST 1.
Accessories: Lenovo X220 laptop computer running Windows 7; Studio Six Digital iTestMic & Pro Mike1 Audio Analyzer; Apple iPhone 4; Torus Power AO24-ACB-A1AB Isolation Transformer.
Listening Room: 26′ L by 13′ W by 12′ H with semi-cathedral ceiling, moderately furnished with sound-absorbing furniture. Left wall has large bay window covered by Hunter Douglas Duette Honeycomb fabric shades. Rear of room opens into a 25′ L by 15′ W kitchen through an 8′ by 4′ doorway.Larry Greenhill