Definitive Technology Mythos XTR-50
All prices in US dollars.
Were impressed when designers find clever ways to
overcome the challenges increasingly presented to them in speaker design. The latest
challenge for the Definitive Technology team was to create an on-wall speaker to
complement the super-thin on-wall video displays now on the market, while still sounding
good. The result is the Mythos XTR-50 ($799/each), which is just 1.5" thick without
its wall-mounting bracket, or 1.56" thick with it.
This side view shows that the Mythos XTR-50 sticks out less
from the wall than the Samsung display its being used with. When we asked the Def
Tech reps if the Mythos is the shallowest on-wall speaker using dynamic drivers
thats being made by anyone today, they said that while they werent certain
enough of it to make that claim, they also hadnt seen any other on-wall speaker as
shallow. Neither have we.
The Mythos XTR-50s slick-looking gloss-black cabinet
is made from aircraft-grade aluminum. The front baffle is rounded to aid with dispersion,
and Def Tech says that the drivers couple to the cabinet in a way that makes the entire
enclosure act as a heatsink.
One of the ways the Definitive Technology engineers save
space is by having the drivers magnets extend through the Mythos XTR-50s rear
panel so that they, like the panel itself, are flush with the wall. When thin is
whats in, every 1/4" counts!
The tweeter is the same one Definitive Technology uses in
their Mythos ST and STS SuperTower speakers, but the midbass driver is not. The XTR-50 has
two newly developed XTDD dynamic drivers, which have convex cones and low-profile
surrounds. The drivers measure 3.5" across. By themselves, these drivers
couldnt generate the kind of bass needed to make the XTR-50 sound big and full, so
each dynamic driver is aided by two passive radiators that look identical to it but lack
motor assemblies -- the four radiators sole purpose is to work with the XTDD drivers
to augment the bass.
Weve reviewed a number of Definitive Technology
speakers and have come away impressed with how the speakers look and sound. To get that
balance right, you have to make deliberate and often clever design decisions, and the
Mythos XTR-50s innovative design elements seem like steps further along that path.
We look forward to the Mythos XTR-50s debut in the first quarter of 2010.