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Definitive Technology BP-9040 Bipolar floor-standing speaker with built-in powered subwoofer

Item # 735BP9040

Lots of speakers can fire sound at you, but very few can project sound  all around you, as well as...

Lots of speakers can fire sound at you, but very few can project sound  all around you, as well as...

Item # 735BP9040

About the Definitive Technology BP-9040

Dave Bar

Big sound from a slim powered tower

Lots of speakers can fire sound at you, but very few can project sound all around you, as well as Definitive Technology's high-performance BP-9040 bipolar floor-standing speaker. It uses a special driver configuration with both front- and rear-firing speaker arrays to surround you with rich, lifelike sound. This tower also adds a built-in powered subwoofer to the bottom of the cabinet for intense bass. Even in large rooms, every listener will experience a huge, three-dimensional soundstage with both music and movies. Plus, this speaker's sleek, modern look and cloth grille-wrapped enclosure make it a welcome addition to just about any space.

Big sound from a slim powered tower

Lots of speakers can fire sound at you, but very few can project sound all around you, as well as Definitive Technology's high-performance BP-9040 bipolar floor-standing speaker. It uses a special driver configuration with both front- and rear-firing speaker arrays to surround you with rich, lifelike sound. This tower also adds a built-in powered subwoofer to the bottom of the cabinet for intense bass. Even in large rooms, every listener will experience a huge, three-dimensional soundstage with both music and movies. Plus, this speaker's sleek, modern look and cloth grille-wrapped enclosure make it a welcome addition to just about any space.

Bipolar speaker technology immerses you in detailed sound

Definitive Technology BP-9040

A built-in powered sub delivers deep bass. (The woofer fires to the left only; no mirror-image version.)

Here's how it works: direct sound from the front two midrange drivers and tweeter arrives at your ears first, to provide clear, focused imaging. That's followed by sound from the rear mid driver and tweeter to enhance spaciousness. The combination creates a lush, seamless soundstage that's more like the way we hear sounds in real life. And thanks to Definitive's Balanced Double Surround System (BDSS) drivers, your music and surround effects will sound clear and accurate, allowing you to pinpoint the soloist in a band or the direction of a jaguar's call in the jungle.

Powerful bass built right in

At the base of the speaker is an 8" side-firing subwoofer coupled to two 8" passive radiators. This trio creates the total radiating surface of a much larger woofer, but with better bass control, speed, and detail than a single huge driver. (Note: when you're using a pair, the subwoofer will fire to the left on both speakers, and the bass sounds well-balanced.) A built-in 300-watt amplifier powers the subwoofer, delivering deep, hard-hitting bass that eliminates the need for an external sub. And because a subwoofer is built into the cabinet, bass output is already perfectly blended with the mids and the highs. All you have to do is set the bass volume to match your room and taste, then sit back and enjoy your music and movie soundtracks.

Dolby Atmos® ready

If you're looking for an easy way to seamlessly integrate Dolby Atmos surround sound into your home theatre, the BP-9040 is ready to go. Underneath this tower's handsome, removable aluminum top plate is a built-in docking port made exclusively for Definitive's optional A90 Atmos enabled speaker module.

Simply remove the plate, attach the A90 module to the port, and you're ready for an intense home theatre experience. The hidden integrated connector port terminates at the base of the tower with a pair of binding post speaker terminals for connection to your Dolby Atmos compatible receiver's "Height" or "Top" outputs.

Don't have a Dolby Atmos capable receiver? Check out our selection.

Build a complete Definitive Bipolar home theatre system using perfectly matched centers (see the CS-9040, CS-9060, and CS-9080) and bipolar surrounds (see the SR-9040 and SR-9080).

Did you know?

Your new speakers will probably sound better after several weeks of use than they do right out of the box. That's because the material surrounding the woofers will loosen up, allowing the drivers to move more fully. Definitive Technology estimates a break-in period of 24 to 48 hours of playback before the speakers will deliver optimum sound quality. For more information and helpful tips, check out this article from Definitive's website about conditioning your speakers.


Product highlights:

  • Forward Focused Bipolar Array™ technology for lifelike imaging and greater speaker placement flexibility
  • built-in powered subwoofer with volume control
  • Intelligent Bass Control provides precise bass level adjustments while maintaining accurate midrange tonal balance
  • Dolby Atmos® and DTS:X™ ready with optional Definitive Technology A90 add-on speaker module (sold separately)
    • built-in docking port with speaker connector plug for A90 module under removable aluminum top plate
  • Balanced Dual Surround System (BDSS) driver technology places rubber surrounds on both the outer and inner edges of each speaker cone for improved control and clarity
  • front speaker array: dual 4-1/2" BDSS midrange drivers and 1" annealed aluminum dome tweeter with silk surround for smooth, extended highs
  • rear speaker array: one 4-1/2" BDSS midrange and 1" annealed aluminum dome tweeter with silk surround
  • 8" subwoofer with built-in 300-watt Class D amplifier
  • two 8" passive bass radiators for enhanced output
  • bass-reflex (passive radiator) cabinet design
  • frequency response: 22-40,000 Hz
  • recommended amplifier power: 50-300 watts
  • sensitivity: 92 dB
  • impedance: compatible with 8-ohm outputs
  • cloth grille-wrapped enclosure with anodized aluminum top plate
  • cast aluminum base plate with adjustable knurled carpet spikes and floor glides (for placement on hardwood and other hard surface floors)
  • two sets of 5-way binding posts (one set dedicated for optional A90 Dolby Atmos add-on module)
  • LFE line-level input (optional) for subwoofer
    • speaker-level-only connections recommended for optimum performance
  • LED illuminated front "D" logo (with rear-panel defeat switch)
  • 11"W x 39"H x 13"D (with included base)
  • warranty: 5 years speakers, 3 years electronics
  • MFR # IECA-A

What's in the box:

  • Tower loudspeaker
  • 6.5' AC power cord
  • Top-plate (installed)
  • Stabilizer base
  • 4 Floor guides
  • 4 Carpet spikes
  • 4 Screws
  • 4 Nuts
  • Owner's Manual
  • "What Obsession Sounds Like" card

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More details on the Definitive Technology BP-9040

Stacey B.

Features & specs

Enclosure Passive Radiator
Finish MDF/Aluminum/Cloth
Color Black
Tweeter Hard-Dome
Tweeter Size (inches) 1
Midrange Size (inches) 4.5
Woofer Size (inches) 8
Woofer Composition Polypropelene
Woofer Surround Rubber
Built-in Powered Sub Yes
Dolby Atmos Drivers Optional
Connector Type 5-Way post, RCA
Bi-amp Inputs No
Parts Warranty 5 Years
Labor Warranty 5 Years
Power Range 50-300
Frequency Response 22-40k Hz
Sensitivity 92 dB
Impedance (Ohms) 8
Subwoofer Amp Power 300
Height (inches) 39-1/16
Width (inches) 11-1/16
Depth (inches) 13-13/16
Weight 36 lbs

Product Research


Tower Loudspeaker: The Definitive Technology BP9040 tower speaker is the answer for remarkable, immersive, room-filling sound so you can experience every detail of your home theater soundtrack. Its patented Forward Focused Bipolar Array (FFBP) will expand your room's entire soundstage for an enveloping sound. An aluminum dome tweeter, high-performance midrange/midbass drivers, and an integrated powered subwoofer with Intelligent Bass Control let you hear and feel every note as the artist intended.

Forward-Focused Bipolar Array (FFBP): The Definitive Technology BP9040 tower speaker utilizes powerful, Forward-Focused Bipolar (FFBP) speaker array for wide and immersive sound dispersion. Forward Focused Bipolar (FFBP) Array offers the ultimate balance between room-filling sound and a precise center image, while giving you total placement flexibility. The FFBP array consists of a 1" aluminum dome tweeter and two 4.5" midrange/midbass cone woofers on the front and a single 1" aluminum dome tweeter and one 4.5" midrange driver on the back. By radiating sound both forward and rearward, the speaker produces sound as it is in real life, with improved pinpoint localization of soloists, greater placement flexibility, and superior intelligibility.

Aluminum Dome Tweeters: The BP9040 tower loudspeaker features two 1" aluminum dome tweeters (one on front/one on back) for crystal clear highs that bring the most demanding audio soundtracks to life. The Definitive Technology tweeters are designed to play higher in frequency than what is heard by the human ear, creating an authentic reproduction of sound as the artist intends in the studio or concert hall.

BDSS (2nd Gen) Drivers: The Definitive Technology BP9040 employs three 4.5" midrange/midbass cone woofers (two on front/one on back) with patented Balanced Double Surround System (BDSS) technology (2nd generation). BDSS technology improves driver excursion which results in the selected driver producing bass output usually associated with a larger driver, while retaining the improved dispersion and midrange definition of a smaller driver.

Integrated Powered Subwoofer: The BP9040 contains a integrated powered subwoofer that consists of a side-firing 8" woofer and 300 watt amplifier designed to extend the frequency response and dynamic range of the tower speaker. The best loudspeaker is one that reproduces balance between the highest highs down to deepest lows as accurately as possible. The integrated powered subwoofer offers deeper, more impactful bass from the tower speaker without the need to add a separate powered sub. The benefits of a built-in subwoofer include -

  • Eliminates the need for a separate subwoofer that takes up additional floor space.
  • More bass output from two subwoofers, compared to one.
  • Two subwoofers reduce standing wave room resonances and dead zones.
  • The subwoofers are perfectly integrated and blended with the mids and highs, eliminating the crossover and phase controls of a separate subwoofer.

Intelligent Bass Control: Intelligent Bass Control is Definitive Technology's latest advancement that offers enhanced bass while maintaining overall mid-range tonal balance. Intelligent Bass Control gives you the ability to modulate deep bass up or down in level while simultaneously maintaining optimal mid-range clarity regardless of where the bass control is set. Simply rotate the dial on the back of the loudspeaker to your preferred bass setting and the speaker will do the rest. Definitive Technology recommends starting at the mid-point and then adjust to your preference from there.

Dual Passive Radiators: Definitive Technology has paired its integrated powered subwoofer system with two opposite side-firing 8" passive radiators for even bigger, deeper, louder bass that you can hear and feel.

Acoustically Transparent, Resonance-Free Cabinet: The Definitive Technology BP9040 uses a resonance-free, one-piece cabinet for high performance, distortion-free sound. The speaker cabinet's maximum rigidity with strategically placed bracing improves imaging while reducing resonance, further reinforcing the speaker's clean and powerful sound. The BP9040 loudspeaker's cabinet is wrapped in an acoustically transparent cloth grille for unaltered sound. Thanks to the speaker's acoustically transparent grille, you'll enjoy the subtle elegance of the speaker design without having to remove a speaker grille to enjoy natural, uncolored sound. On the top of the cabinet is a brushed aluminum, acoustically-treated magnetic plate that finishes off the speaker cabinet nicely.

Speaker & Line Level Inputs: The Definitive Technology BP9040 tower loudspeaker is fitted with both speaker-level (binding post) and line-level (LFE/mono-RCA) inputs for its built-in drivers, plus speaker-level (binding post) inputs and a proprietary connector for when adding Definitive Technology's Dolby Atmos speaker module (sold separately).

  • Binding Post Terminals: The speaker terminals are 5-way binding posts that will accommodate spade connectors, single or dual banana plugs, pin-connectors, and bare wire up to 10 gauge. By connecting the tower speaker's binding post terminals to your AV receiver's front speaker terminal outputs, the BP9040's internal crossover network distributes all frequencies to their intended drivers, and the integrated subwoofer works harmoniously with the mid-range array. In your AV receiver's menu, set the Front speakers to "Large" and Subwoofer to "No". 
  • LFE/mono-RCA Input: For those you demand greater customization, the BP9040 also features an LFE/mono-RCA input. In this setup, your AV receiver's front speaker outputs still connect to the BP9040's binding post speaker terminals, but also requires that the AV receiver's LFE/mono-RCA output to be connected to the tower speaker's LFE/mono-RCA input. This type of setup gives you the ability to control the amount of low frequencies (those below the crossover point set in your receiver) sent to the integrated subwoofer. You will need to set front speakers to "Small", subwoofer to "Yes", and the crossover point in your AV receiver to 80Hz or below to avoid disturbing the delicate blending between the subwoofer and midrange. In addition, careful balance between the subwoofer output level of your receiver and the bass control on the back of your speaker should be considered (Definitive Technology recommends starting with the bass control at 12 o'clock).
  • Optional Dolby Atmos Elevation Module: The BP9040 features an integrated, hidden connector port that fits Definitive Technology's A90 Dolby Atmos elevation speaker module (sold separately) seamlessly. Simply remove the magnetically-sealed, acoustically treated aluminum top panel from the BP9040 tower speaker and firmly align and place the A90 elevation speaker module within the top of  the tower speaker to hear and feel Dolby Atmos multi-dimensional sound. There are dedicated binding post terminals (labeled "Height") to connect the "Height" channels of your AV receiver to the BP9040.You will also need a Dolby Atmos-enabled receiver and Dolby Atmos-encoded source material.
Note: Definitive Technology recommends that you do not use your receiver's auto setup functions, as they can be ineffective in setting up and adjusting speakers with integrated powered subwoofers. Configure tower speaker into your home theater system using your AV receiver's manual setup menu.

Cast Aluminum Base w/ Interchangeable Feet: The BP9040 tower loudspeaker is supported by a sturdy, cast aluminum base. The cast aluminum base's wide footprint increases overall stability of the tower speaker, while the addition of spikes or floor glides help keep your speakers firmly in place whether on carpet or other solid floor surfaces like hardwood or tile. The floor glides add approximately 0.4375" to the overall height of the tower speaker, while the spike feet add approximately 1" to the overall height of the speaker.

Note: The tower speaker must be used with the cast aluminum base for maximum stability.

Placement: The BP9040 tower speaker offers bipolar sound, meaning they will reflect sound off the back and side walls to create an incredibly broad and engaging soundstage no matter where you sit. The BP9040 tower loudspeaker is very flexible in terms of positioning and placement. To optimize performance, please follow these simple placement guidelines -

  • Setup a pair of tower loudspeakers and the main listening position in an equilateral triangle for the best stereo imaging.
  • Position each tower speaker at least 4" away from the back wall to maximize its bipolar sound.
  • Toeing the tower speakers in slightly, if possible, toward your viewing area will also provide a stronger center image.

AC Power: Because the BP9040 features a built-in powered subwoofer, you will need to connect the tower speaker to an AC outlet. The tower speaker's built-in amplifier will automatically turn-on once it's receiving an active signal from your AV receiver, and will automatically turn off after 20 minutes of no active signal.

Front-Panel LED: There is a front-panel LED "D" logo which illuminates when the BP9040's built-in amplifier is on, and turns off when the built-in amp is in standby mode. The LED "D" logo can be deactivated entirely.

BP9000 Series: The BP9040 is part of Definitive Technology's BP9000 series line-up of speakers. Definitive Technology's BP9000 series loudspeakers is its 4th generation of bipolar tower speakers, matching center channels, surrounds, and a height speaker module, designed to offer true, full-range performance for listeners seeking the highest quality audio reproduction. The BP9000 series of loudspeakers consists of the BP9020, BP9040, BP9060 and BP9080X bipolar tower speakers; the CS9040, CS9060 and CS9080 center-channel speakers; the SR9040 and SR9080 surround speakers; and the A90 elevation speaker module supporting Dolby Atmos.

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Customer Q&A

7 questions already asked

would the sound stage be confused with this speaker, in a room with hardwood flooring acoustics, more so than a conventional speaker tower without the bipolar functionality ?
david  Dec 13, 2020
2 answers
I have mine on tile flooring with 10 foot ceilings and they sound fantastic.
james  Dec 28, 2020
We have a small room with hardwood floors 12 x 18' running in stereo mode on receiver. Even in this small space the sound stage was very distinct, even when the speakers were brand new. Running with the A90 height speakers, center channel and super cube the sound is immersive and clear. Running on a Yamaha RX 3080 Advantage. Hope this helps
robert  Dec 28, 2020
I Am thinking of upgrading slowly only buying 2 at a time can I temporarily link these with 4 infinity primus towers and a infinity primus center ? Or will it not sound right if I do ?
justin  Aug 29, 2020
2 answers
Definitive Technology speakers are not a timbre match for Infinity Primus speakers. They will be able to play together with those Infinity speakers as part of a theater system but people's voices may not sound the same when jumping from one speaker to the next.
jason  Sep 15, 2020 (Staff)
I see no problem as long as these are your front right and left. I love mine and highly recommend them.
perry  Sep 10, 2020
I am thinking about purchasing these speakers but what I read there have been a few complaints about a slight popping noise when either they turn off after 20 minutes or when they turn on has anyone having this problem?
bill  Aug 08, 2020
10 answers
There can be a subwoofer thump at the speaker's automatic 20 minute power-down (if no signals are received from your home theater receiver), especially if you leave the system on at higher sound output levels. If you have a pair or more of the BP9040s and either a CS9040 or CS9060 center, the thump can be quite noticeable. You can easily avoid the thump/pop by routing incoming power to the built-in subwoofers through a home theater power management unit having circuits which include a power on/off delay. No more thump when you use the power management unit to power down the AVR and speakers. I have never noticed any pop or thump at power-on.
glen  Aug 10, 2020
Yes there is a popping noise shortly after the speakers are powered off. I called Def Tech and they are aware of it. The popping noise is something I had with some of my other speakers in the pass too.
ron  Aug 10, 2020
I have not had any issues regarding popping noise with my speakers.
ron  Aug 10, 2020
Yes I hear it when they turn OFF, not ON. But I don't know if it's a "problem" or not though. I'm curious to see what other owners have to say who have more experience with speakers like this. It's not terribly loud but it might make you jump if everything is quite and its bedtime 20 minutes after the sound is off. Again, looking forward to hearing some other answers here I hope. All in all, you most likely won't hear it during the day, and depending on how often it's dead silent in your house 20 minutes after you turn your tv off would determine how annoying it may be to you. I'm sticking with them. They sound amazing. I just hope that popping noise isn't damaging something. Would be a pain in the rear to return... and awfully quiet around here without them.
brian  Aug 09, 2020
No issues as such. Great buy!
harbir  Aug 09, 2020
They do make a crackling noise when they turn off. Mine do not make any off noise when they turn on. I think it is just the internal amplifier powering down. The sound when they are on is very crisp, clean and vivid. I have been very pleased with them despite noise on power down.
justin  Aug 08, 2020
When I shut down for the night, the D on the speaker front remains lit and only sometime afterwards do they power down though Im not around to hear the pop. Ive heard it but it doesnt bother me considering the pop doesnt extend into my entertainment time. In all the time Ive had them in the last year I can count on 2 hands when the pop happened. Ive enjoyed the speakers. The pop isnt to the detriment of the sound enjoyment.
geoffrey h  Aug 08, 2020
I have not had this problem. The only time they "popped" was when the power went out to the house or the surge protector shut the power down to the system. These are great speakers that are wife approved by getting the sub woofer off the floor. FANTASTIC BASS reproduction for music and movies when set up correctly. A true joy to own.
david  Aug 08, 2020
Yes when you turn off the speakers after awhile you hear a thump sound that's just the power subs turning off no problem great speakers enjoy
steven  Aug 08, 2020
Yes, I have noticed this sound. If the speakers are in a main area of your house it might bother you. I would love to know if DT is planning to address the issue - shouldn't be happening on speakers of this caliber. They sound amazing though.
david  Aug 08, 2020
Has the 9000 series ever had less powerful subwoofers? I recently visited a local store carrying Def. Tech. and was shown spec sheets showing less powerful subs for the entire line ( eg 80 watts for the 9020 ).
james  Mar 08, 2019
1 answer
Not that we've seen. You can download the owner's manual (which also provides the Spec Sheet for all of the 9000 series models) by clicking the link for it under the "What's in the Box" heading on the speaker's main webpage.
ryan  Mar 13, 2019 (Staff)
If you have a Yamaha receiver w/ YPAO automated room optimization, should you elect not to use it with the 9000â??s?
james  Mar 05, 2019
2 answers
Sorry Jim I have a Denon InCommand series. I don't know about the features on the Yamaha. I can say that I am glad that I went with the Definitive Technology speakers. I'll have to leave your question to the experts at Crutchfield.
todd  Mar 05, 2019
I have a Marantz r6012 receiver with microphone optimization and it worked fine so I believe using your YPAO mic should work for you as well with these speakers.
ron  Mar 05, 2019
I have the bp9040 s but I noticed that the subwoofer is on the right side of both speakers shouldn't one of them be on the left so that when you're placing it from the cabinet and the wall everything is more balanced. Also what is the recommended distance from the wall and cabinets?
darryle  Jan 05, 2019
2 answers
I've been standing on both sides of the sound stage and I don't notice any lack in bass on the sides of the room which the subwoofers do not face. I think Def Tech's plan was for the buyer to put 4 tower speakers all around so the subwoofer pumps bass around in a circle... and that's what I'm about to experience next. BP9060's on the way and the 9040's will be used as surrounds. Then there will be 4 subwoofers putting out bass in both directions on both sides of the room. It's a big apartment and just the 9040's alone are filing it up evenly with bass. They sound amazing. And if you go big and get the CS9060 or 80 then you have another subwoofer right in the middle. It's a total system meant to work together. I think Def Tech knows what they did here... and that's make you spend a bunch of money, that you will not regret.
brian  Aug 09, 2020
The company designed them that way to stop confusion when setting them up. But I agree that it would be better if one was on the left. I don't know what the recommended distance is from the wall. Ikeep mine about 7 inches and the sound is great.
joyce  Jan 12, 2019
Should the subwoofer be oriented towards the walls or the tv stand?
joseph  Mar 12, 2017
1 answer
Joe. The subwoofers are much less sensitive to direction than the mids and tweeters. So I would position such that the woofers project left to right and the tweeters and mids are front to back. The 9040s produce great sound so you can't go wrong. Try a few different orientations and let your ears determine. Good luck and enjoy.
brian  Mar 13, 2017

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