Important Specs Overview
Speaker type: Passive, 2 way, back ported
Continuous power handling: 75 W
Sensitivity: 85 dB/W/m
Frequency response range: 60 – 20k Hz
Unit weight: 4 lbs
Unit dimensions: 6 x 7 x 10 inches (width x depth x height)
Warranty: 1 year
Review And Discussion
Micca’s MB42X are an upgrade upon the older MB42s with an actual crossover (hence the appending “X”) that properly dedicates the correct frequencies to the tweeter and woofer respectively. The result is a much improved budget-tier bookshelf speaker that is performant across the entire range.
The MB42Xs seem to be intended for near/mid-field listening, where it’s no so important that the speakers get as loud as possible, but moreso that the sensitivity remains within a low variance (3 dB is the generally accepted standard), meaning the highs and lows don’t suddenly get quiet and make the overall sound unbalanced. Various sources have shown with tests that the MB42X’s do indeed have a nice and flat efficiency curve. The speakers can get quite loud though, and 75 W of continuous power handling is very solid for how cheap these speakers are.
The design is pretty plain-jane, but, that’s always a forgivable concession with budget-tier speakers. They’re kind of bulky, but light for their size so placing should be easy enough. Micca offers a 1 year warranty on its passive speakers which is pretty bare minimum, where 3-5 years of coverage is more the norm, even among cheaper passive speakers.
Our Overall Take, As Compared To The Competition
If you’re looking for a pair of inexpensive near/mid-field table top bookshelf speakers that sound solid, the MB42X is a much improved upgrade to its older version, and a solid choice.
Having said that, if you’re looking for traditional home-theater speakers, you’ll probably want to add in a subwoofer – the bass on 2-way bookshelf speakers is typically lacking because they’re not really designed for such.
Also note that the MB42X is passive and will thus require a receiver to power a pair. If you’re looking for something that you can just plug in and play, you’ll need to make sure they’re powered. We recommend Edifier – they make a number of really nice powered bookshelf speakers, not to mention they also come with a better 2 year warranty, which is quite good for inexpensive powered speakers. Our current favorite is the 1280T (reviewed here).