NHT SuperZero 2.1 vs. Wharfedale Denton 85th

NHT SuperZero 2.1 Mini-Monitor Speaker Wharfedale Denton 85th Anniversary Bookshelf Speakers
$300 $1000
Dimensions (H × W × D)
9.00” × 5.50” × 5.00”
229mm × 140mm × 127mm
13.44” × 9.44” × 11.94”
341mm × 240mm × 303mm
Power Type
Passive Passive
Frequency Response
85-20,000 Hz 45-20,000 Hz
ASR Score
3.4 n/a
ASR Score w/Subwoofer
6.7 n/a

Key Takeaways

TLDR Summary: NHT's SuperZero 2.1 mini-monitor speaks to the purist audiophiles who crave a compact speaker that punches above its weight for clarity and precision. With its sealed box design, the SuperZero 2.1 offers tight, controlled bass and a transparent midrange. In contrast, the Wharfedale Denton 85th Anniversary bookshelf speakers are a nod to classic aesthetics and warm, rich sounds. They deliver a fuller bass response and a more expansive soundstage, thanks to their larger cabinets and advanced driver design. Choosing between them hinges on personal taste—clinical accuracy or vintage warmth, and room aesthetics.

Speaker Comparison

When it comes to high-fidelity sound, the landscape is vast with choices that can cater to the most discerning ears. At the heart of this sonic universe, the battle of bookshelf speakers presents a myriad of options for audiophiles. Today, we're comparing the NHT SuperZero 2.1 Mini-Monitor Speaker with the Wharfedale Denton 85th Anniversary Bookshelf Speakers, two seemingly disparate models that both offer a ticket to audio nirvana, albeit with different flavors and philosophies.

Design and Build Quality

The NHT SuperZero 2.1 stays true to its name as a mini-monitor, boasting a compact and unassuming form factor that easily blends into any room decor. Its minimalist design is constructed with a focus on functional simplicity, featuring a sealed box that eliminates the need for a port and the associated noise that can sometimes accompany it. In contrast, the Wharfedale Denton 85th Anniversary speakers are a tribute to traditional aesthetics, with a handsome walnut veneer and a quaint throwback to the golden age of hi-fi that is both visually and tactilely pleasing. Build quality on the Dentons exudes a sense of heritage and longevity.

NHT SuperZero 2.1 Mini-Monitor Speaker
NHT SuperZero 2.1 arrow (at Amazon.com)

Sound Character and Performance

The sonic character of the NHT SuperZero 2.1 is astonishing for its size. It offers an exceptionally clean and neutral soundstage, allowing for nuances in music to be heard with clarity and precision. However, its modest size does mean that it lacks some depth in the bass department, which can be mitigated with the addition of a good subwoofer. The Wharfedale Denton, on the other hand, brings warmth and richness to the table, with a sound that is lush and expansive. The midrange particularly shines on the Dentons, allowing vocals and instruments to bask in a velvety sonic glow. The bass is more pronounced than in the NHT, benefiting from the Denton's larger cabinet and well-engineered bass reflex port.

Imaging and Soundstage

Imaging is one of the most crucial aspects for audiophiles, and the NHT SuperZero 2.1 excels in this domain. These speakers can disappear into the room, leaving behind a holographic soundstage that can compete with more expensive models. The pinpoint accuracy of instrument placement is a treat for those who love a more analytical listening experience. The Dentons, with their old-school design, also provide an impressive soundstage, though with a more laid-back presentation. The focus here is on creating a broad and enveloping experience that is less about surgical precision and more about soaking in the atmosphere of the recording.

Wharfedale Denton 85th Anniversary Bookshelf Speakers
Wharfedale Denton 85th arrow (at Amazon.com)

Value and Versatility

The NHT SuperZero 2.1 speakers are, without a doubt, a fantastic value proposition. They represent an accessible entry point into high-fidelity audio for newcomers, or a satisfying addition for seasoned audiophiles looking for a secondary system. The necessity for a subwoofer to fill in the lower frequencies can be seen as an additional expense, or an opportunity for customization. The Wharfedale Dentons, while priced higher, offer a complete package with their full-range capabilities. They are less demanding in terms of additional equipment, though they would benefit from careful pairing with the right amplifier to truly sing.

Final Verdict

Choosing between the NHT SuperZero 2.1 and the Wharfedale Denton 85th Anniversary speakers ultimately comes down to personal preference and listening habits. The SuperZero 2.1 offers an almost chameleon-like ability to bring out the detail in recordings within a tight, controlled package, ideal for smaller rooms or as part of a larger multi-channel setup. The Dentons, with their classic charm, are geared towards those who prefer a more relaxed listening session, enveloped in warm, resonant tones that can fill a room with ease. Both are capable contenders in their respective rights, ready to bring joy to ears around the world.

Whether you gravitate towards the modern, crisp lines of the NHT SuperZero 2.1 or the nostalgic allure of the Wharfedale Denton 85th Anniversary bookshelf speakers, both stand as testaments to the subjective nature of sound. It's a beautiful reminder that in the realm of audiophile gear, the journey towards the perfect setup is as much about the emotion and experience as it is about the specifications and technology. As always, the most reliable metric for any listener is how the music feels in the heart and soul when played through these remarkable transducers of sound.

Check Current Prices:

NHT SuperZero 2.1 Mini-Monitor Speaker
NHT SuperZero 2.1 Mini-Monitor Speaker
Wharfedale Denton 85th Anniversary Bookshelf Speakers
Wharfedale Denton 85th Anniversary Bookshelf Speakers

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Disclaimer: the speaker data listed on this website are correct to the best of our knowledge, but we do not guarantee the accuracy of the data. Please double-check any measurements with the manufacturer before making a final purchasing decision.