22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on August 2, 2010
It was a risk to spend this much money on a pair of speakers that I have never heard and never seen, would cost over $200 to return with restocking fees and shipping, and this company has recently suspended operations (and I think moved to China). However based on my previous experience with 15 year old NHT Super Zeros, I when ahead and bought these. Fortunately NHT seems too have kept it's original quality, designs, and great sound. I'm keeping em. Here's my experience.
1. They are very heavy, and extremely solid. At high-end show rooms I could touch the top of various tower speakers and feel the vibration - I can't with these. That has got to affect distortion somehow.
2. They look very classey - deep piano black finish, not cheap looking Chinese stuff.
3. Very accurate bass sound. As with most Acoustic-Suspension designs, the first impressions are that they lack bass tones, however when playing music with actual base content, these NHT'a come through with very strong and solid bass. Not booming, as with Bass-Reflex (ported) designs. I find that most all other speakers (at any price) tend to color all content with more bass, and it seems that most ported speakers try to compensate for small size by adding ports to increase the bass. These recent trends, make those speakers have "rich and powerful first impressions" but the distortion is very tiring to listen to after a period of time. These NHT's do not have the phase and 'peaky' distortion of ported designs.
4. Midrange and high frequencies are exceptionally good. I find that while watching movies I do not need to turn the volume up to understand the verbal portions. And I do not get "ear tired" after extended listening to classical music. Crystal clear - just like my old NHT Super Zero's.
Overall, there are so many parameters involved that I find it impossible to determine sound quality by listening for 5 minutes or by limited technical measurements - it can only be determined by listening to high quality content over a long period of time. I have owned these speakers for one month now and have grown to appreciate the quality (and high price!). I was worried about the company transition (as with most companies selling their name, lowering the quality, and increasing profit margins, until they go out of business), and they are made in China...but I am pleasantly surpised to see that NHT has maintained their quality. It appears that they are back in mainstream business again. You do need slightly more amplifier power to drive these speakers, and if you really need rumbling low frequencies of many action movies, it is better to buy a sub-woofer than distort the overall sound. I normally don't take the time to write review, but I like to support high quality/value whenever I can.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on June 14, 2013
I've used NHT SuperOnes (large bookshelf speakers) for years as my fronts and an NHT SuperCenter for center duties. I recently bought a pair of these NHT Absolute Towers for front duty and moved the SuperOnes to the rear (5.1 system). I'm also using an SVS 20-39 PCi subwoofer. The combination of these speakers and subwoofer is ridiculous! They are incredibly precise and clear with great audio for both music and 5.1 sources like movies and concerts. I'm extremely happy with this setup and can wholeheartedly recommend the Absolute Towers for anyone who wants super-clean and precise sound as long as you intend to pair them with a good subwoofer. The other advice I would give is to be sure you have an amplifier/receiver with good power as the sensitivity level isn't high, relative to other speakers. This is likely a purposeful design choice or possibly a consequence of them being sealed, not ported, speakers (so-called "acoustic suspension" design). NHT says this about acoustic suspension:
"Acoustic suspension designs utilize nature's perfect spring force, air, to damp and control the speaker motion like high performance shocks on a sports car. This significantly lowers distortion for long, fatigue-free listening and improves impulse response allowing subtle detail to be revealed, making everything sound more real. Acoustic suspension designs also allow incredible power handling."
The last thing I'll mention is how the speakers look. Beautiful gloss piano-black (something like 7 coats of paint and 3 or 4 of lacquer) and they look amazing with the grill covers off. Just keep kids and pets away from those cones.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on January 13, 2013
These are likely the best kept secret from the mass markets of buyers who flock to highly marketed brands such as Polk, Klipsch, JBL etc...all of which are fine product. However, if you want world-class quality, looks, sound, service, and value then buy NHT speakers.
1) I've been buying speakers, receivers, Hi-Fi gear for the past 35 years and have had the typical lines and as the wallet allowed I would upgrade. Crutchfield carries this speaker line as well and frankly that is how I found their website and spoke with the founder, Chris Byrne. Well, that did it as how often can you speak with someone who knows the supply chain from start to finish...Never. These folks are quality people and provide world-class service and product.
2) The Absolute Towers are a glossy black, 10+ coats of piano black, acrylic etc...gorgeous...solid, look better than anything I've seen. These feel and sound like they should be $1,200-1,500 each!
3) Sound: phenominal, and certainly what you drive them with will make a difference along with the music source: turntable-excellent, Yamaha higher end CD player-excellent...warm, crisp, excellent sound field,
4) Value/Service....cannot be beat. This is a California based company, quite small so you get the personal touch. You will end up at some point, if you like, speaking or emailing with Chris or John (both founders of the company). Briliant guys, know their product and respond in minutes via email, maybe an hour if they are tied up...World class service, advice and people and product...
No, I don't work for the company. I'm a white collar guy from Chicago who wants to share a great story about a company that earns it everyday. Spend your money with them and step up to world class speaker quality for mass market pricing. Seriously...I don't write review hardly ever...but these guys deserve the press for what they deliver.
BTW...I started with "trying" the Absolute Towers after speaking with Chris, was very impressed with our honest/sincere conversation and decided on the $400 center...Then two weeks later bought the Absolute Wall mount speakers and in spite of having 3 subwoofers already, bought the b 12-d subwoofer...so now I have the complete 5.1 system driven by a new Denon 1713, LG BluRay, Yamaha CD (higher end) CD player, with a Vizio 50' plasma...
The sound will make you smile once you put on your favorite album, movie, CD...kick back with a cool one and enjoy the great decision you made....60 day return policy so you have nothing to lose...buy them. [...]
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on March 14, 2012
I must be honest with you that I was very hesitant to purchase these Towers due to the relatively low price- I knew that this would in all probability be the last pair of floor standing speakers I would ever purchase- I have in the past owned 'Corner Klipschorns', 'B&K's', 'Mirage', upper end 'Infinity's', and as such they have replaced upper end 'JBL's' in my music and home theater set up- I wondered, how could any such highly applauded loudspeakers come at such a moderate price- But not to worry- These acclaimed beauties would be a bargain at two or even three times the selling price- The mid and upper end are as well established in these NHT Towers as those loudspeakers that I have owned that were priced at up to five times of what the NHTs cost- You may need a little help with the extreme low end if your musical and home theater tastes dictate such, but I guarantee that anyone hearing this pair will be absolutely delighted with the results- I have now owned my pair for a couple months and I must say they get sweeter and sweeter with every use- They are so good, I am awaiting the 'Absolute Wall Speakers' to be released to complement them in my Home Theater setup- In conclusion, you would be remiss if you were in the market for new loudspeakers and didn't give these babies a listen- You'll be glad you did, I guarantee it!
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on May 4, 2013
Recently retired at 65, like many of my generation I grew up addicted to good sound and live music. I had forgotten how much I love my tunes. These speakers and the Harman/Kardon receiver paired with a Yamaha CD player have helped me recapture a long lost love. I've had reasonably good equipment in the past but this system just blows me away. I've had it up and going for about 4 months now and honestly, I think it sounds better every time I play it. It covers such a wide range of response. My taste runs from pop to rock to classical. It's all good. My friends are astonished by the sound and the appearance of these speakers. Cocktail hour at Johnny's place is on the map.
In a world where it often seems you don't ever "get what you pay for," my new sound system rewards me 10 times what it cost. This is the best bargain for reasonably priced sound equipment on the market. You will not be disappointed.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on February 5, 2011
I bought two of these speakers and a TwoC Center speaker to replace NHT Super Ones and a NHT Center speaker. These speakers are a definite upgrade.
The glossy black finish helps the speakers blend into the background and the job is finished by the excellent sound stage produced by the speakers. Imaging is very precise and the sound is crisp and natural. I have a powered subwoofer as well to fill in the bass, so I don't have an opinion on the bass response of these.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on April 25, 2014
I ordered these due to the recommendation by the Wirecutter, and I've loved them ever since.
I do recommend tuning the phase matching in your receiver, as I experienced fatigue while listening to the speakers the first few days I had them. After I had tuned my receiver more, and enabled phase auto-matching, I was much happier with their performance. That, and the speakers take a little time to "breathe" and warm up properly. Give them at least 40-60 hours of play, as they continually get richer during the early phases of ownership.
A very solid set of speakers to buy, even if they seem expensive for your first purchase. I say this because everyone has dreams of owning a 5.1 system right off the bat, when you frankly don't need one right away. You can also save money if you play your cards right.
I will eventually be pairing this with a 12" sub from NHT, and probably the Classic Two Center. That being said, I'm in no rush, because these speakers already crank out such great audio.
In short, if you are just getting started in your speaker setup, and love good fidelity audio, which still watching your budget, I'd certainly recommend these speakers.
on December 30, 2014
I don't watch much television, so I would not be a good barometer; however, I bought this for my husband, and he abso-LOVES it! He thinks the only improvement would be if I had bought two for greater surround-sound.
2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on January 24, 2013
I did a lot of research trying to find great small tower speakers. The build of the speaker is very good. the sound quality for music on this is very good. I highly recommend these speakers.
3 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on May 2, 2011
Very clear, not as confident as I would have hoped. For the price, and given the size, I recommend them.