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NHT Classic Absolute Tower

Floor-standing speaker

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  • NHT Classic Absolute Tower

    Angled view with grille off

  • NHT Classic Absolute Tower

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  • NHT Classic Absolute Tower

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  • NHT Classic Absolute Tower

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  • NHT Classic Absolute Tower

    Front - Grille on

  • NHT Classic Absolute Tower

    Left side

  • NHT Classic Absolute Tower

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Item #: 228ATB
 

Review Summary

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Our take on the NHT Classic Absolute Tower

by Kristen Schaub

Floor-standing speakers — still standing tall

Sure, floor-standing tower speakers buck the industry trend toward smaller, visually inconspicuous speakers, but they're hard to beat if great sound is your primary goal. Tower speakers produce powerful sound with excellent bass, making them a great choice for serious music lovers and for folks who want high-impact home theater.

Slender looks, full-bodied sound

NHT's sleek Classic Absolute Tower isn't just another pretty face — its high-performance sound will make your ears perk up and your mouth say "wow." Whether you're listening to a Chopin nocturne or watching the latest action flick, you'll hear wonderfully open midrange and crystal clear highs, complemented by tight, tuneful bass. The Classic Absolute Tower is a great choice for high-end home theater surround sound systems on a budget.


Solid design keeps sound-muddying vibrations at bay

grille off shot

The Classic Absolute Tower features a 5-1/4" midrange and dual 5-1/4" woofers to separate the mid- and low-frequencies. It allows this speaker to produce beautifully natural, dynamic mids and well-controlled bass. The sophisticated 1" aluminum dome tweeter contributes crisp, articulate highs to the mix. The Tower's narrow front baffle allows the tweeter and woofers to be placed very close together. The result is exceptionally even on- and off-axis response, so everyone on your couch can enjoy the same clear sound.

Like all of NHT's Classic series speakers, the drivers are housed in a computer-modeled acoustic suspension (sealed) enclosure that's heavily braced. It provides plenty of strength to let the woofers rock out without adding any sound-coloring resonances to your music and movie soundtracks.

Classic looks help create a Classic system

This speaker's curvaceous cabinet is made of dense, rigid MDF. It's covered in eight layers of high-gloss paint and two layers of clear coat that are hand-polished between each layer for lasting beauty. Place the Classic Absolute Tower on the included weighted base, and use either the rubber pads for hardwood floors or the steel spikes for carpet.

It's perfectly matched to the rest of the Classic line, so you can create a high-end audio system to meet your needs. Use two Classic Absolute Towers with the Classic Absolute Center center channel speaker in the front of your room, and place a pair of NHT's Absolute Zero bookshelf speakers on the side walls or in the back of your room for a stunning surround sound system. And don't forget to add one of NHT's B-10d or B-12d subwoofers for room-thumping bass.

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Highlights:

  • frequency response 58-20,000 Hz (±3 dB)
  • sensitivity 86 dB
  • 6-ohm impedance
  • handles up to 200 watts
  • 1" aluminum dome tweeter
  • 5-1/4" polypropylene midrange
  • dual 5-1/4" polypropylene woofers
  • 5-way binding posts
  • acoustic suspension (sealed) enclosure
  • high gloss black finish
  • included base measures 10-5/8"W x 2"H x 12"D
  • 5-3/4"W x 37-15/16"H x 7-1/4"D (without base)
  • weight: 35.6 lbs with base
  • warranty: 5 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Features and Specs
General
Enclosure
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Acoustic Suspension
Finish
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MDF/Lacquer
Color
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High-gloss black
Tweeter
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Dome
Tweeter Size (inches)
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1
Midrange Size (inches)
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5.25
Woofer Size (inches)
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5.25
Woofer Composition
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Polypropylene
Woofer Surround
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Rubber
Built-in Powered Sub
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No
Video-Shielded
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Yes
Connector Type
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5-way post
Bi-amp Inputs
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No
Parts Warranty
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5 Years
Labor Warranty
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5 Years
Specifications
Power Range
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25-200
Frequency Response
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58-20k Hz
Sensitivity
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86 dB
Impedance (Ohms)
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6
Amplifier Power
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---
Height (inches)
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37-15/16
Width (inches)
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10-5/8
Depth (inches)
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12
Weight
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35.6 lbs
Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • Floor-standing loudspeaker
  • Detachable grille
  • Base
  • 4 Machine screws
  • 4 Lock nuts
  • 4 Metal spikes
  • 4 Spike cups
  • Setup Guide
  • Product Registration Card

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Driver Technology
Enclosure Design
Connections
Mounting Options

Driver Technology

Overview: The NHT Absolute Tower loudspeaker is the sleek and affordable floor-standing speaker solution for high-performance music & home theater systems. The Absolute Tower has surprising bass and can be used alone without a subwoofer in small to medium size rooms for both music & movie systems. The sound from the Absolute Tower is tight, controlled, articulate, fast, spatial, and dynamic.

3-Way Design: The NHT Absolute Tower employs a 3-way speaker design. The NHT floor-standing speaker is equipped with a 1" fluid-cooled aluminum dome tweeter (with neodymium magnet structure), a 5.25" polypropylene cone midrange (with separate chamber), and two 5.25" polypropylene woofers. Using a 3-way design increases detail, reduces distortion, and allows the woofers to concentrate on bass reproduction.

Acoustical Waveguide: The Absolute Tower's tweeter utilizes an acoustical waveguide to deliver, more even high frequency response, no matter what part of the room you're in.

Crossover Network: The Absolute Tower uses a sophisticated crossover network that was developed using computer (and human ear) aided design to carefully split the frequencies between the woofers, midrange, and tweeter at just the right spot.

  • 3rd order low pass & high pass at 450Hz
  • 2nd order high pass & low pass at 2.2kHz.

Huge Soundstage: The Absolute Tower has a huge soundstage either out into the room or near a wall. This is due to the narrow baffle design; there is a high-ratio of speaker surface area to baffle area. This significantly reduces diffraction (which creates irregular response in room) and helps the speaker disappear in use.

Voice Matching: The Absolute Tower can be matched with any NHT speakers as the same design goals and protocols are used in developing every product. The speakers that are sized the same and share common output capability would be the Absolute Zero satellite speakers  (228AZB, sold separately) for the surround channels and the Absolute Center center-channel speaker (228ACB, sold separately), and the Classic B-10d subwoofer (228B10D, sold separately) for a seamlessly matched home theater system.

Enclosure Design

Acoustic Suspension: The NHT Absolute Tower features an Acoustic suspension design (sealed enclosure with no ports or holes in the cabinet).  The acoustic suspension design utilizes the air that is trapped in the cabinet to control and damp the woofer cone motion.  The result is significantly lower distortion, especially in the critical midrange for a fatigue-free listening even for extended periods at higher volumes. The impulse response is also improved significantly which allows for better dynamics and subtle details to be revealed, making everything sound incredibly real. The acoustic suspension design also allows for incredible power handling. The Absolute Tower can be powered with as little as 25 watts per channel yet can be used with amplifiers and receivers with plus 150 watt ability without strain.

MDF Cabinet: The Absolute Tower's floor-standing cabinet is beautiful and delicate, yet incredibly robust. The Absolute Tower's cabinet is extensively braced and acoustically inert; unwanted cabinet vibrations will never be added to your music. The floor-standing speaker weighs in at a bit over 35 lbs. and are constructed of medium density fiberboard (MDF) milled on CNC (computer numeric controlled) routers and lathes to insure high precision and lasting quality.

Weighted Base: The gently sculpted base puts the Absolute Tower on stable footing and is weighted with a hidden steel plate to provide mass where it is acoustically desirable, further reducing cabinet-born resonances.

High-Gloss Black Finish: A hand-painted finish with 2 primer coats, 7 color coats, and 2 clear coats producing a beautiful piano quality high-gloss, black finish.

Connections

5-Way Binding Posts: The NHT floor-standing loudspeaker is equipped with one pair of sturdy, nickel-plated brass 5-way binding posts to ensure a secure connection to many types of speaker cables and connectors. The binding post terminals will accept banana plugs (dual/single), pin-connectors, spade-connectors, and bare wire (up to 10AWG).

Color-Coded: The 5-way binding post terminals are color-coded so you can easily indentify positive (red) and negative (black).

Mounting Options

Placement: The Absolute Tower loudspeaker is designed for easy placement. They can be placed  near a wall or set out into the room.

Magnetically Shielded: The Absolute Tower is magnetically shielded so placement next to that vintage CRT television isn't a problem.

Spiked Feet (with protective cups): The NHT Absolute Tower loudspeaker includes spiked feet when placing the floor-standing speaker on carpet for added stability. Protective cups are also included for use when placing the floor-standing speakers on wood or tile floors.

 
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NHT Classic Absolute Tower Reviews

Average Customer Review:

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5 out of 5

WOW!!!!

Written By Joanie, Hendersonville,NC on Thursday, February 28, 2013
 
This is the first time I have ever written a review for anything so please bear with me- My husband, over the course of the past 40 years, has been deeply involved in his music- Every few years he replaces his speakers, along with other components, with a new set- When he told me that he ordered another five piece loudspeaker ensemble I nearly went through the roof- What again?!! It seems everytime he orders new ones they get bigger, uglier and I have a hard time fitting them into my decor- So, you can imagine the thrill when these arrived and he took them out of the boxes- These units are just beautiful- I do not believe that he has ever owned such a classy looking pair of stereo loudspeakers (and the rear on wall speakers are just perfect, but that is another review)- I then thought, "There is no way these boys can sound as good as they look!". But, I was totally wrong- To me, and I am no expert on sound reproduction, they sounded every bit as good as some of the $10,000 to $15,000 speakers he has dragged home- I can honestly say that these speakers make the music we hear and the movies we watch much more enjoyable- These are a winner in every respect to me, the wife who has to look at them every day- Wives, if you are reluctant to to those big, clunky monsters that are so prevalent in audio stores, take a look at these- I am now hoping that these will be the last speakers my husband will ever need!!
Pros:
Beautiful, easy to decorate around, and they sound fantastic!!
Cons:
Absolutely none!
Was this review helpful?    Yes | No
 
5 out of 5

Champagne on a beer budget

Written By Captain Beach, Bradenton. Fl on Thursday, December 27, 2012
 
Over the past fourty years I have owned some of the greatest loudspeakers thatb the industry has offered= AR LSTs, Klipsh Cornerhorns,. JSE Infinite Slope, Martin Logans, Mirage and Infinity Kappa 9s to name a few- Yes, they were all superb loudspeakers but they came at a great price- That is exactly what makes these babies so satisfying- Great sound at a terrific price!! As a matter of fact, I would venture to say that the low price will deter many from purchasing this line of speakers- After all, how can a thousand dollar pair of speakers compare with those costing up to three times this amount- All I can tell you is you have GOT to give them a listen- The money saved can go toward upgrading the equipment that needs it- Bottom line is this: Before you buy a new pair of speakers, give NHT a hear- Dollar for dollar, they may be the best buy available in audio!!
Pros:
Great looks, wife friendly; very neutral, soft extended highs and excellent mid range response
Cons:
Sensitivity a bit on the low side at 86 db (not really a complaint but felt I had to offer something here)
3 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

good value

Written By brady, denver, co on Tuesday, September 06, 2011
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
very good, handles extreme bass with no buzz. Very sharp and clear , clean. my experience is with peachtree inova, using digital optical cable from, marantz cc4003 cd player.
3 out of 9 people found this helpful
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For a more in-depth review and enhanced detailed information on the NHT Classic Absolute Tower, please visit the Crutchfield website product page (/ISEO-rccbcspd/p_228ATB/NHT-Classic-Absolute-Tower.html ).