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Monoprice Releases 3 New THX Certified Compact On-Wall LCR Speakers

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Monoprice Monolith THX On Wall Speakers

Monoprice Monolith THX On Wall Speakers

Summary

  • Product Name: Monolith M-OW1, Monolith M-OW3, THX Certified Compact Satellite Speakers
  • Manufacturer: Monoprice
  • Review Date: April 07, 2022 10:05
  • MSRP: $500/pair - Monolith M-OW1, $500/each - Monolith M-OW3, $250/pair - THX Certified Compact Satellite Speakers
  • First Impression: Gotta Have It!
  • Buy Now

Monolith M-OW1

  • Woofer Driver    4.5" polypropylene cone with NBR surround
  • Tweeter Driver    20mm silk dome coaxial with waveguide and neodymium magnet
  • Passive Radiators    2x 4.5" polypropylene cone with NBR surround
  • Frequency Response    70Hz ~ 20kHz ±3dB
  • Recommended Amplifier Power    30 ~ 100 watts
  • Sensitivity    84.4dB (2.83V @ 1m)
  • Crossover Type    Acoustic filter
  • Low‑Pass Filter    2.4kHz @ 12dB/oct
  • High‑Pass Filter    2.4kHz @ 18dB/oct
  • Cabinet Material    Medium density fiberboard (MDF)
  • Finish    Black matte
  • Input Connectors    5‑way spring‑loaded binding posts
  • Dimensions (each) (WxHxD)    7.0" x 16.1" x 3.5"
  • Weight (each)    15.4 lbs.

Monolith M-OW3

  • Woofer Drivers    3x 4.5" polypropylene cones with NBR surrounds
  • Tweeter Drivers    3x 20mm silk dome coaxials with waveguides and neodymium magnets
  • Passive Radiators    6x 4.5" polypropylene cones with NBR surrounds
  • Frequency Response    70Hz ~ 20kHz ±3dB
  • Recommended Amplifier Power    50 ~ 150 watts
  • Sensitivity    84.8dB (2.83V @ 1m)
  • Low‑Pass Filter    2.4kHz @ 12dB/oct
  • High‑Pass Filter    2.4kHz @ 18dB/oct
  • Cabinet Material    Medium density fiberboard (MDF)
  • Finish    Black matte
  • Input Connectors    5‑way spring‑loaded binding posts
  • Dimensions (WxHxD)    47.2" x 7.0" x 3.5"
  • Weight    23.1 lbs.

Monolith THX Certified Satellite Speakers

  • Woofer    4.5" polypropylene cone with NBR surround
  • Tweeter    20mm silk dome coaxial with waveguide and neodymium magnet
  • Enclosure    Sealed MDF cabinet
  • Finish    Black PVC
  • Frequency Response    80Hz ~ 20kHz ±3dB
  • Sensitivity    81.0dB ([email protected])
  • Nominal Impedance    4 ohms
  • Recommended Amplifier Power    25 ~ 125 watts
  • Low‑Pass Filter    1.7kHz @ 12dB/oct
  • High‑Pass Filter    1.7kHz @18dB/oct
  • Input Connectors    5‑way binding posts
  • Dimensions (WxHxD) (each)    6.0" x 6.3" x 5.9"
  • Weight (each)    4.2 lbs.

Executive Overview

In 2018 Monoprice wowed us with their endeavor into the world of THX with their Monolith 10” THX Select and 12” THX Ultra Subwoofers. They were well above competitors in their measurements for less money. Cabinet construction, driver build, and amplifier quality are of a level that one would expect to see in considerably more expensive subwoofers. They might not be the prettiest subwoofers out there, but are often characterized as "bulletproof" since they can be driven to earsplitting loudness levels without the fear of harm to the unit.

As seen in the measurements and analysis, these subwoofers have near perfectly-balanced performance within their operational bandwidths.

-Audioholics contributing writer James Larson

thx 365T

The Monolith line’s expansion into THX-certified products must have proven to be successful because Monoprice has then rolled out a set of THX-certified loudspeakers to complement their subwoofer line. The set was comprised of a bookshelf speaker, a ‘mini-tower’ (really just a large bookshelf speaker), and a center channel speaker. The results were similar to the THX subwoofers; bulletproof design with excellent measurements for a fraction of the cost of traditional THX speakers of similar size.

The overall story of the Monolith THX speakers is much the same as was told by the Monolith THX subwoofers: here, for maybe the first time, one can get THX Ultra certified components for a very affordable price. These are high-performance speakers for $500/ea (365T) and $400 (365C), respectively. I can’t remember any THX Ultra certified speaker that was priced so low; all of the ones that I can think of were at least four-figure items.

- James Larson

Now, Monoprice has completed the series with a set of three new THX certified onwall speakers. The Monolith M-OW1, Monolith M-OW3,  and THX Certified Compact Satellite Speakers. For full certification, THX must be consulted during the development stage so that the company can ensure that the methodologies and technologies being used meet its standards.

Whether it’s a basement or living room, selecting the right gear to create a great sounding home theater can be a daunting task, but our Monolith line makes it easy. We engineer our Monolith THX Certified speakers to the highest standards for quality and value, and design them to meet the strictest performance standards to ensure an optimal home cinema experience in rooms of all sizes. Achieving THX Certification validates our hard work and dedication to bringing great products to market.

- Hobie Sechrest, Monolith business unit manager

Monolith M-OW1: On-Wall LCR Speaker

THX satellite 1monolith THX

 

The M-OW1 features a slim cabinet design and could easily be used for front and surround-channel speakers or they could be used horizontally as a center channel. These 4-ohm on-wall speakers are said to deliver a surprisingly flat frequency response from 70Hz to 20kHz. The polypropylene cone has a thick NBR surround, while the silk dome tweeter is equipped with a neodymium magnet. The driver has been tuned by THX for maximum performance in a slim, small enclosure. In addition, the speaker has been outfitted with dual passive radiators to add depth and punch to the bass.

Monolith M-OW3: On-Wall Passive LCR Soundbar

monolith 3 THX

For those that like the clean look of a soundbar, but demand the performance of a true home theater speaker system, the Monolith M-OW3 combines front left, center, and right channels into a single thin wall-mounted speaker. Each of the passive soundbar’s three channels features a high-performance 4.5-inch concentric driver with an inset 20mm silk dome tweeter, an optimized waveguide, and two 4.5-inch passive radiators.

THX Certified Satellite Speakers

THX satellite

The THX Certified Satellite Speakers are compact speakers that feature a high-excursion 4.5-inch concentric driver with an inset 20mm silk dome tweeter and optimized waveguide. Though smaller in form factor than the on-walls, these MDF-encased, THX precision-tuned cube shaped speakers look like an easy way to add surround or height to your immersive sound listening area.

Monolith and THX are brands that stand for quality, and we’ve validated through rigorous testing that the new Monolith on-wall and satellite speakers from Monoprice truly excel. Meeting strict THX performance and listening standards, we’re pleased to announce that the M-OW1, M-OW3 and Compact Satellite Speakers from Monolith have earned THX Certification. Customers can be sure these speakers are capable of delivering spectacular performance for an optimal home theater experience.

 Steve Martz, global head of THX Certification, THX Ltd.

These new THX Certified Compact Monolith on-wall and satellite speakers all come with a keyhole mounting slot and spring-loaded wire terminals. Like other Monolith products, the three speakers are backed by a five-year warranty and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

What We Think

freq response

Frequency Response M-OW1 From Monoprice

Monoprice says that all three speaker designs boast a flat frequency response from 70Hz to 20kHz. Of course these measurements are coming from Monoprice, but from past products we can say that Monoprice is usually spot-on with their published results. However, frequency response may be one of the most misunderstood and frequently abused speaker specifications that any consumer has to deal with. To understand why Monoprice is touting the frequency response of their THX On wall speakers you can read our article on Understanding Loudspeaker Frequency Response.

The flat black finish and squared off boxy design is typical for Monolith speakers. We were happy to see a bit of a curved design with their Monolith THX-365T Dolby Atmos enabled speakers, but since the newly released products are designed to be wall mounted, the boxy design makes sense.

The M-OW3 passive soundbar is reminiscent of the RBH Sound Ultra-3 (MSRP: $1,200) which we reviewed in 2020 with one big exception. The RBH Ultra-3 CAN be used as a center channel and can be wired as such. A wiring diagram is included with Ultra-3 to make sure you get it right the first time.

When asked if the M-OW3 can be used as a center channel, Monoprice replied:

This is designed to be placed under your flatpanel as an LCR sound bar, not as a center channel. This is why is has a L/C/R speaker terminal.

THX certification requires hundreds of different tests to ensure the highest standards possible including vertical vs horizontal dispersion, axial frequency response, and output vs distortion. This brings us back to the idea of a THX certified soundbar. Can Monoprice (or any other company for that matter) actually get great results from a 4' wide LCR speaker and is the THX certification making this a special product? We will be able to answer that question in the coming months as we plan on reviewing the M-OW3 Passive LCR soundbar.

All Monolith THX Certified Compact speakers can be mixed and matched to suit your room or system needs. I could see combining any of the Monolith THX Certified Compact on-wall and satellite speakers with one (or more) of the Monolith THX Certified subwoofers, THX-365T Mini-Towers, and  THX-365C Center Speaker. All three THX certified speakers are currently available on the Monoprice website.

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

About the author:
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Tony is our resident expert for lifestyle and wireless products including soundbars. He does most of the reviews for wireless and streaming loudspeakers and often compares soundbars in round ups and helps us cover the trade shows.

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