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HUG - here for all audio enthusiasts

Since its inception ten years ago, the Harbeth User Group's ambition has been to create a lasting knowledge archive. Knowledge is based on facts and observations. Knowledge is timeless. Knowledge is human independent and replicatable. However, we live in new world where thanks to social media, 'facts' have become flexible and personal. HUG operates in that real world.

HUG has two approaches to contributor's Posts. If you have, like us, a scientific mind and are curious about how the ear works, how it can lead us to make the right - and wrong - decisions, and about the technical ins and outs of audio equipment, how it's designed and what choices the designer makes, then the factual area of HUG is for you. The objective methods of comparing audio equipment under controlled conditions has been thoroughly examined here on HUG and elsewhere and can be easily understood and tried with negligible technical knowledge.

Alternatively, if you just like chatting about audio and subjectivity rules for you, then the Subjective Soundings sub-forum is you. If upon examination we think that Posts are better suited to one sub-forum than than the other, they will be redirected during Moderation, which is applied throughout the site.

Questions and Posts about, for example, 'does amplifier A sounds better than amplifier B' or 'which speaker stands or cables are best' are suitable for the Subjective Soundings area.

The Moderators' decision is final in all matters regarding what appears here. That said, very few Posts are rejected. HUG Moderation individually spell and layout checks Posts for clarity but due to the workload, Posts in the Subjective Soundings area, from Oct. 2016 will not be. We regret that but we are unable to accept Posts that present what we consider to be free advertising for products that Harbeth does not make.

That's it! Enjoy!

{Updated Nov. 2016A}
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Amplifier selection for your Harbeths (general, not specific Harbeth models)

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  • Re: Amplifier selection for your Harbeths (general, not specific Harbeth models)

    Originally posted by Euler View Post
    I have been driving my new pair of C7s with a Nakamichi TA-3, which, being over twenty years old, is beginning to fail (mostly capacitors). I'm willing to spend up to 2.5K or so on a new integrated amplifier, but it has to have a remote -- with my hip bursitis, I can't be getting up every time I need to adjust the volume -- and it has to be able to drive a second pair of (smaller satellite) speakers simultaneously. These constraints rule out many excellent amplifiers.

    Any suggestions?

    And any thoughts in particular on the Creek Destiny integrated amplifier?

    Bruce
    Bruce:

    I agree with Thanos, the Simaudio integrateds are really good, but unfortunately I don't think they have the double-speaker capability you need.

    Here's another thought for you, though: the NAD 375BEE. Really powerful, very well reviewed (including by Sam Tellig in Stereophile, who also loves Harbeths), has a remote, will accept two pairs of speakers. People don't think of NAD as an "audiophile" brand but the upper end of the range in particular is excellent: I don't think too many people could tell it apart from more expensive gear if they were listening blind.

    And best of all, it's only half your proposed budget, so you'd have over $1,000 left in your pocket.

    Comment


    • Re: Amplifier selection for your Harbeths (general, not specific Harbeth models)

      or the Marantz PM5003? glowing review here...

      http://www.stereophile.com/integrate...ted_amplifier/

      this is the model currently being carried in Japanese shops, not the 6003. It takes 2 pairs of speakers.

      or the Yamaha 700's. Ive heard the 700's, not in an ideal situation, so won't comment.

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      • Re: Amplifier selection for your Harbeths (general, not specific Harbeth models)

        I'm powering my Compact 7ES-3's with a McIntosh MA6900 (2x200w) phenomenal sound... Neither the amp nor the speakers are going anywhere soon.

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        • Re: Amplifier selection for your Harbeths (general, not specific Harbeth models)

          Originally posted by EricW View Post
          Bruce:

          I agree with Thanos, the Simaudio integrateds are really good, but unfortunately I don't think they have the double-speaker capability you need.

          Here's another thought for you, though: the NAD 375BEE. Really powerful, very well reviewed (including by Sam Tellig in Stereophile, who also loves Harbeths), has a remote, will accept two pairs of speakers. People don't think of NAD as an "audiophile" brand but the upper end of the range in particular is excellent: I don't think too many people could tell it apart from more expensive gear if they were listening blind.

          And best of all, it's only half your proposed budget, so you'd have over $1,000 left in your pocket.
          Thank you, Eric and Thanos, for your suggestions. It was surprising to me how few integrated amplifiers have two speaker inputs. You'd think many folks would be in my situation: one pair of speakers for serious listening and a second pair to make music in other rooms around the home. I did seriously consider the NAD, but went with the Creek Destiny instead, which has received glowing reviews. Hasn't arrived yet -- ordered it in black which takes longer.

          Bruce

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          • Re: Amplifier selection for your Harbeths (general, not specific Harbeth models)

            Good luck with it, Bruce. I've considered the Creek in the past on the basis of good reviews, but never got to the point of actually auditioning one. I'd be interested (and I'm sure others would be too) in your impressions of how the Creek sounds with your Harbeths.

            Comment


            • Re: Amplifier selection for your Harbeths (general, not specific Harbeth models)

              My beloved SHL5 are driven by the Sonneteer Orton. The result is stunning.. absolutely the best sound I had in my house :-) No more upgrades for me.

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              • Re: Amplifier selection for your Harbeths (general, not specific Harbeth models)

                Originally posted by Euler View Post
                Thank you, Eric and Thanos, for your suggestions. It was surprising to me how few integrated amplifiers have two speaker inputs. You'd think many folks would be in my situation: one pair of speakers for serious listening and a second pair to make music in other rooms around the home. I did seriously consider the NAD, but went with the Creek Destiny instead, which has received glowing reviews. Hasn't arrived yet -- ordered it in black which takes longer.

                Bruce
                Yes Bruce,

                Please reply with comments on this combo. By chance, I had never had the opportunity to listen to any Creek driving Harbeths, so your experienece will be very helpful. Creeks have received very positive reviews for almost 20 years, I am very anxious to know if they do have so strong points. Theoretically, they must be excellent with Harbeths.

                Regards,
                Thanos

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                • I was told by a friend to try an Italian integrated, the REVO IPA 140 of NORMA AUDIO with my SHL5 and I would like to know if somebody knows something about the above integrated.

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                  • I am now driving my Monitor 30 with a pair of VALVET E1 Monos, I compared them to LFD, Lavardin is Ref, the big Audiomat and a C.E.C. integrated. This tiny amps got only 10 W but they work perfectly in my 35 sqm living room. They sound dynamic, natural and valve like. If you have a distributor in your country, it is worth to give them a try!

                    W.B.

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                    • The revealing nature of Harbeth enable us to cook our food according to our taste. Glad you found your best cook. Enjoy the music!
                      "Bath with Music"

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by keithwwk View Post
                        The revealing nature of Harbeth enable us to cook our food according to our taste. Glad you found your best cook. Enjoy the music!
                        talking about cooking, if someone from avondale is reading this, i'd like to eat at your table if i may. could you please cook up an integrated for a reasonable price ?

                        -something based on your existing technology - s200 power modules.
                        -similar bullet proof engineering, safety features etc
                        -simple - on/off, volume control with 3-4 inputs.
                        -speaker binding posts as per the current (no wierd speakon stuff)
                        -something which will keep running

                        im hungry.

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                        • Primare Amplifers.

                          Does anybody use Primare Amplifers with Harbeth loudspeakers?Any impressions?
                          Thank's.
                          Luca.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by macolive View Post
                            I am planning to order the SHL5 to mate with my VK-75. I borrowed my friend's Compact 7 and drove them with the VK-75 and they sounded great!!! So much so that I've placed an order with my dealer for the SHL5 right away.

                            The VK-75 is warm sounding so be careful. Everything else upstream of the VK-75 in my systems is very neutral.

                            If your front end is warm sounding then you may want to try the VK-75SE as I believe this has a more neutral sound. One more caveat with BAT, I am told that you must use a fully balanced pre-amp to extract the full potential of the amp.
                            How do you like the shl5 with the VK75? Are you still using this combo? Did you experiment with the speaker cable hook up at the back of the amplifier?

                            Comment


                            • Is there anyone driving SHL5s with ICE powered amps?

                              Comment


                              • Imho - a decent audio amp is pretty textbook

                                Major
                                - Not produce any perverse artifacts eg. excessive harmonics (rules out tubes) or have a “character” (rules out Naims, hee hee hee)
                                - Measures relatively flat 20 to 20 under a typical speaker load (give or take x db– dependent on cost). (rules out tubes)
                                - Must be quiet and have good s/n ratios (rules out Roksan)
                                - under no circumstances is there audible hissing, clicks, pops or hum when it leaves the factory. Quality is important.
                                - Must have good protection circuitry - dc, heat, clipping
                                - no sudden surprises at performance extremes (rules out some class d type amps which crumble)
                                - Environmentally friendly (rules out tubes) and not run hot (rules out full bias, eg Sugden)
                                - Basically plug and play, working with hardware store cables – 79 strand etc.

                                Minor

                                - Not too unnecessarily heavy and bulky. Can be picked up by non weight lifter
                                - Balance control will be nice
                                - sensible placing of speaker and input connectors
                                - If the preamp (non passive) is a good design, option to detach it from the power amp section
                                - Should have a selectable 110 and 230V mains input switch
                                - No sharp edges

                                My armchair recommendation (some of which may not fit all the criteria above) approximate highest to lowest which I have a feeling will work extremely well with any Harbeth and of course the larger ones will need more grunt. My feeling is that even if you start with something halfway down the list, there will be very minor differences.


                                Bryston BP6, 2B pre power
                                Marantz SM11S SC11S pre power
                                Yamahas AS 2000
                                Parasounds P3 and A23 pre power
                                Brystons B100
                                Marantz PM 11
                                XIndax XA8520 XA 8800MNE pre power
                                Avondale S200 power (you might want to wait for their preamp)
                                Dussun V8
                                Anthem I225
                                Rotel 1520
                                Denon PMA 1500
                                Marantz PM 15
                                Yamahas AS 1000
                                Marantz PM8003
                                Brystons B60
                                Marantz PM6003
                                Yamaha AS 700
                                Pioneer A9 or even A6
                                Marantz PM 5003
                                Dussun T6
                                Denon PMA 500/510
                                Rotel RA 04
                                NAD 315 BEE

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