Majority’s Teton Plus raises the bar for what an entry-level home AV system should aspire to
Can a £100 soundbar and subwoofer combo actually be good?
Majority Teton Plus
⊕ Easy plug-and-play set up br>
⊕ Powerful subwoofer br>
⊕ Good overall performance br>
⊖ Materials feel cheap br>
⊖ No WiFi Direct or app controls br>
⊖ No upgrade path br>
Cambridge audio company Majority is shaking up the budget end of the consumer tech market with the Teton Plus, a ‘bar and wireless subwoofer combo priced at the £100 mark.
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Aimed at buyers on a budget who aren’t bothered about niceties like Dolby Atmos and 5.1 surround, the Teton Plus is a straightforward 2.1 system with an attractive price tag. If your TV needs a boost in the sound department, but you have neither the spare cash, patience or space for tiny side speakers to be dotted all around your living room, Majority is hoping that you’ll take a shine to the Teton Plus.
There’s no upgrade path here, so don’t look at the Teton Plus as a stepping stone to 5.1, because that’s not what this is – what you see if what you get. That’s how it measures up on paper, so how does a £100 system actually perform?
Design and dimensions
The Teton Plus is about 80cm wide and 10cm tall, so that’ll just about fit underneath most TVs and TV stands. There are two hooks on the back, so it can be mounted on a stand or wall bracket. The body is made from shiny black plastic and painted metal, and the grille covering the speakers is a fine metal mesh. On the right hand edge of the bar are a number of controls for power, input/source, volume, and Bluetooth pairing – all of these controls can also be found on the remote.
The shiny plastic does’’t look like it’ll weather scratches well, and the grille feels flimsy. The unit we were sent even had a minor dent in the centre, which we hope is a one-off. Either way, you will want to handle the Teton Plus with care. It feels churlish to point out, given the Teton Plus’s price, but there’s no kind way of saying it – it looks and feels cheap.
The subwoofer stands 28cm tall, has a cone mounted on the right hand side, and a circular port on the front, and four rubber feet on the base. This looks and feels a bit more reassuring.
Setting up the Teton Plus is easy. It’s a case of plugging the ‘bar into your TV – you’ve got the option of HDMI, optical, or RCA – and then connecting it to the mains. No connection to the Internet is required.
You’ll need to cycle through the various source options on the remote in order to establish a connection. It didn’t automatically detect that I’d connected it to my TV via HDMI, and so we had to keep tapping the ‘Input’ button until the status LED changed to light blue before it started working.
Pairing with the subwoofer is no trouble, once the soundbar is set up. Simply power on the sub and press and hold the ‘pair’ buttons. The wireless connection has an effective range of 10 metres, so keep this in mind.
Sound quality and speakers
The soundstage generated by the Teton Plus has a surprising amount of height and breadth given that there are only two front-firing mid-range speakers. Generally, sound quality is very good, even if low end noises tend to be a bit exaggerated by the sub.
The Teton Plus has a few presets designed to enhance TV and movie watching and music listening, some of which can be customised.
The ‘Dialog’ preset as you’d expect raises voices in the mix, while keeping everything else low. ‘Movie’ appears to do the same, but accentuates bass frequencies. This makes for mixed results – when watching Bodies on Netflix for example, speech was sometimes drowned out by background noise. Football matches also sounded strange, with the crowd noises sometimes threatening to overwhelm commentary.
The ‘Music’ preset lets you raise and lower treble and bass levels between 0dB and +8dB, while ‘Flat’ resets everything to default settings, and lets you adjust levels between -8dB and +8dB. This gives you plenty of room to tweak things to suit.
For TV and movies, we would stick with ‘Dialog’, or switch to ‘Flat’ and kick the bass up by a couple of increments. For music, the ‘Music’ preset is generally best, but you may prefer to use ‘Flat’ here as well.
On either mode, good separation between the kick drum, bass guitar and lead guitar on Yes’ Heart of the Sunrise is noticeable. Even at high volumes, everything sounds nicely spaced during the thundering intro, and when the track gives way to just lead vocals and guitar, everything sounds pristine and clear.
That said, distorted bass and kick drums on both Radiohead’s The National Anthem and Dead Prez’s Hip-Hop tend to merge when the volume is raised above the 20th increment.
High pitched details like the percussive hits, reverb trails and lead guitar on Talking Heads’ Once in a Lifetime and I Zimbra respectively stand out clearly with the volume turned up, but snare hits in Dave Brubeck’s Take Five — a clean track we use in testing — start to sound distorted at similar levels.
Despite low tones sounding overly aggressive at times, you’ll only ever notice this if you’ve got the system cranked up to loud, anti-social levels – we’d say that you’re unlikely to encounter any distortion 90% of the time.
As there’s no Wi-Fi unit in the Teton Plus, music streaming options are limited to Bluetooth, which is all well and good when streaming from your phone, until you have to take a call. That’s the only real drawback of the Teton Plus, which is an excellent value for money option.
If you’re not interested in a system that you will one day want to expand with side speakers, and you just want a simple soundbar and sub, at present, the Teton Plus is hard to beat on price and performance.
Alternatives to consider are the Denon DHT-S517, another soundbar and sub combo which is a little more expensive, but features a wider soundstage, and the Polk React, a soundbar which costs a little more, but can be upgraded with side speakers and a sub, and features Wi-Fi.
- Power: 100 Watts
- Speakers: Two mid-range speakers
- Frequency response: 30Hz – 20KHz
- Inputs/outputs: HDMI In (with ARC), RCA, 3.5mm headphone jack, Type-A USB (for services/updates)
- Dimensions: 102 x 812 x 96 mm
- Weight: 1.62kg
- Power: 80 Watts
- 5.25” (13.3cm) speaker
- Ported cabinet
- Dimensions: 150 x 280 x 382 mm
- Weight: 5.9kg
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