Definitive Technology Mythos ST Loudspeakers Page 4

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Is there any bad (or, at least, less-good) news with the Mythos STs? Well - yeah. With their powered woofers, they really are the epitome of a full-range speaker pair. This means that they impose conflicting needs for placement: The spot(s) for the best imaging and the smoothest in-room bass response are almost never the same. Subwoofer/satellite systems, which allow individual placement of the bass and higher-frequency elements, have an advantage here.

All rooms are different, and as mentioned already, I had to pull out the STs well into mine to smooth output through the middle-bass. But I was never 100% satisfied with my setup in this respect. I frequently found myself tweaking the woofer-level knobs by tiny amounts or walking the speakers a few inches closer to or farther from the wall, to vary the balance and linearity of deep-bass and upper-bass - both of which the speakers clearly reproduced in ample measure, and with great control. How much of this is room-related, I can't reliably say - our measurements later showed the ST to be essentially flat by design but subject to the usual floor-bounce notch in the upper-bass that you get with any tower in a real room (see Test Bench). But either way, I don't want to overstate the case; these are subtle adjustments I'm noting.

Stride-for-stride down to about 35 Hz, the DefTechs' woofer sections matched my everyday sub (a 12-inch Velodyne priced somewhat north of two grand). Below that, the STs fell off, but not too precipitously; in my room, they still produced meaningful output at about 28 Hz, but not as much below 25 Hz. Clearly, the hot setup here would be to run the STs as "large" front left/right speakers, with bass from the LFE (and other channels that need it) diverted to an honest 18-Hz subwoofer.

Of course, I couldn't resist testing how the Mythos STs worked for home theater, so I threw them into a 6.1 array with my everyday Snell center and surrounds and with my Velodyne sub handling bass for those speakers plus the LFE channel. Wow! The system literally shook the building on the avalanche sequence from xXx, yet it also delivered balanced, wonderfully detailed playback from my best multichannel music discs. I have little doubt about the impact and detail that would be delivered by an ST pair set up with its Mythos family mates.

BOTTOM LINE The Definitive Technology Mythos ST loudspeaker isn't cheap, but it's an impressive reproducer capable of true audiophile-quality two-channel sound and highly detailed, room-rattling home theater. Its height and somewhat elevated image location, and (possibly) away-from-the-wall placement, may need to be considered. But it's hard to imagine anyone feeling shortchanged. Two-channel, five-channel, more-channel: This is a terrific design, period.

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