A soundbar is a comprehensive single-unit speaker system. It houses tweeters, woofers and midrange drivers in one compact enclosure. A soundbar improves your TV’s sound profile and performance. It provides custom-made drivers for processing different frequencies of the incoming audio. As a result, every little nuance of sound is highlighted, making TV-watching a pleasurable experience.
There are two types of soundbars: passive and active. A passive soundbar does not have an onboard amplifier and therefore has to be powered by an AV receiver or amplifier. An active or powered soundbar comes with its own onboard amp and is self-sufficient.
Our recommendation for a good passive soundbar is the Mythos SSA-42 from Definitive Technology. It is a slender 40-inch soundbar for flat panel TVs with a screen size of 42 inches. Its sound performance is almost at par with its high end cousin, the Mythos SSA-50, which is for larger TVs. Let us now analyze the sound and design features of the Mythos SSA-42 passive soundbar.
Complete Review Of Definitive Technology Mythos SSA-42 Passive Soundbar :
Sound Quality :
The Definitive Technology Mythos SSA-42 is a robust 5-channel 175W passive soundbar. It is the perfect solution for your TV’s frail tinny-sounding speakers. The soundbar is fitted with Solo Surround Array Series loudspeakers that have Spatial Array technology, Definitive Technology’s signature sound technology. Spatial Array is a mechanism by which the soundbar generates 3D surround sound without relying on the size and layout of the room it is in. The speakers do not depend on the room’s walls, floor and ceiling to reflect its sound waves for the purpose of producing surround sound. Instead it uses driver spacing and crosstalk cancellation to generate home cinema-like surround sound. Spatial Array uses sophisticated techniques to trick our brain and ears into believing that sound is coming from five high performance loudspeakers from five different directions. The result is never-before-like immersive audio that’s not only crystal clear but stunningly life-like too. The biggest advantage of having Spatial Array is that you can use the soundbar in any room. Sound is so clear, you can literally pinpoint where it is coming from. For instance, if a gun is fired by a man standing on the left hand corner of the screen, the sound of the gunshot will also emanate from the left. If a car revs up its engine and races from the right side of the screen to the left, the sound you hear will also move from right to left in tandem with the speed of the car. This is the power of Spatial Array. Another unique technology used by the Mythos SSA-42 is Balanced Dual Surround System (BDSS). Five of the soundbar’s speakers work on BDSS technology. Under this technique, rubber surrounds are added to the inner and outer edges of the speaker cone for greater sound accuracy and clarity. The surrounds support the cone at two critical points, improving its mechanical stability. It also increases the driver’s output without increasing the size of the soundbar enclosure. BDSS technology minimizes cone resonance, improves damping and ensures longer, more linear excursion. You get highly detailed and realistic sound with plenty of nuance and impact. The waveguide of the driver smoothens out off-axis response to achieve a wider dispersion of sound with better imaging. No matter where you are seated in the room, the audio will have the same intensity and detail. The Mythos SSA-42 passive soundbar features mineral-filled polymer cones designed using 3D modeling techniques for greater tonal accuracy. The speaker bar has nine high definition drivers. Five are front-firing BDSS mid/bass drivers for the front soundstage (left, right and centre channels) and four are full range rear channel mid/bass drivers. The front drivers are 3.25-inch high output drivers while the rear drivers are 3-inch drivers with butyl rubber surrounds. Three of the front drivers have a 0.75-inch ferro magnetic fluid damped pure aluminum dome tweeter positioned in front of the corresponding driver. This special arrangement accentuates the higher frequencies making them more well-defined. Definitive Technology calls this midrange-tweeter arrangement ‘Axially Arranged’. These axially arranged drivers are tonally more balanced and capable of better sound imaging and precision. The Mythos SSA-42 sounds better after a few weeks of use as the material surrounding the woofers becomes loose enabling freer driver movement.
Product Design :
The Mythos SSA-42 is a slim low-profile soundbar for flat screen TV. It is meant for TVs with a diagonal measurement of 42 inches or more. It can be mounted on walls, shelves and table tops. The soundbar is unobtrusive and fits comfortably under your TV. With a depth of a little over 4 inches, it remains close to the mounting surface, blending in seamlessly with the room’s décor. If you need a space-efficient solution for your 42-inch TVs unsatisfactory sound, the Mythos SSA-42 is what you need. Since it is wall mountable, it does not require a table or console for installation. Plus, its slender minimalistic design frees up precious space and helps keep your room neat and organized. The soundbar has five pairs of five-way binding posts. Its cabinet is made of premium aircraft-grade extruded aluminum. It has a width of 40 3/8 inches, height of 4 3/8 inches and depth of 4 1/8 inches. It is black in color and sports a smart glossy finish. A removable cloth grille covers the front panel of the soundbar. The gadget is accompanied by a complete set-up kit which includes wall mounting brackets, screws and rubber-tipped threaded leveler feet. The Mythos SSA-42 can handle up to 175W. It is a non-powered speakerbar and therefore must be used with a receiver or amplifier. It has a frequency response of 60Hz to 30kHz, impendence of 8 ohm and sensitivity of 89 dB. It weighs 30.9 lbs.
Key features :
- 5-channel passive soundbar for flat panel TVs with a screen size of 42 inches.
- Solo Surround Array Series loudspeakers with Spatial Array technology.
- Balanced Dual Surround System (BDSS) drivers.
- Five front-firing 3.25-inch mid/bass drivers for left, right and centre channels.
- Four 3-inch mid/bass drivers for rear channels.
- Three of the five front drivers each have a 0.75-inch pure aluminum dome tweeter in front of it.
- Aircraft-grade extruded aluminum speaker body.
- Wall and shelf mountable.
To know about the most recommended passive soundbar Definitive Technology Mythos SSA-50, read our detailed review. You can also choose Klipsch Gallery G-42 as a good passive speakerbar option for your audio setup.