EMP HTP-551T Speaker System Comparison & Conclusion
I can't work up a lot of enthusiasm for EMP's HTP-551T as a home-theater speaker system. That said, I admire some aspects of the design, the interchangeable baffles, and the speakers' ability to handle gobs of power without strain.
I enjoyed the HTP-551T system with CDs, so I can recommend it for buyers who listen more to acoustic and pop music than watch movies. But if you have an appetite for wham-bam special effects-laden movies, the HTP-551T might not be the best way to go. In my opinion, you can do better for this kind of money.
For example, Aperion Audio's 4T Hybrid SD tower and satellite package ($1560) sounds substantially bigger and more dynamic than the HTP-551T, and it costs less to boot. It's also worth mentioning that the Aperion system includes a remote-controlled dual 8-inch subwoofer with room-tuning equalization options. Oh, and the EMP's vinyl-wrapped cabinets don't hold a candle to Aperion's gorgeous real cherry-wood or piano-black finishes.
Then again, EMP regularly offers healthy discounts, and the HTP-551T's "on sale" price could change the equation. My review is based on the HTP-551T's full MSRP of $1733. A hefty discount might make the package a lower-cost alternative to the Aperion. Check the EMP site for the latest sale prices.
Sounds swell on CD
User-replaceable front baffles
14-day return policy
Wide open, yet highly focused imaging
Home-theater mojo in short supply
MSRP on the high side of reality
Sub-par satellite/subwoofer matching