HUG - here for all audio enthusiasts

At its inception ten years ago, the Harbeth User Group's ambition was to create a lasting knowledge archive. Knowledge is based on facts and observations. Knowledge is timeless, independent of the observer and can be replicated. However, we live in new world in which objective facts have become flexible, personal and debatable. HUG operates in that real world, and that has now been reflected in the structure of HUG.

HUG has two approaches to contributor's Posts. If you, like us, have 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 Science of Audio sub-forum area of HUG is your place. The objective methods of comparing audio equipment under controlled conditions has been thoroughly examined here on HUG and elsewhere and can be readily understood by non-experts and tried-out at home without deep technical knowledge.

Alternatively, if you just like chatting about audio and subjectivity rules for you, then the Subjective Soundings area 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. From Oct. 2016, Posts in the Subjective Soundings area will not be spell checked or adjusted for layout clarity. 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.

The Moderators' decision is final in all matters and Harbeth does not necessarily agree with the contents of any member contributions and has no control over external content.

That's it! Enjoy!

{Updated Jan. 2017}
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Cost saving digital system - put the money in the Harbeth

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  • Cost saving digital system - put the money in the Harbeth

    Digital electronics is very cheap these days.

    The big name HiFi manufacturers are coming up with custom solutions to streaming audio, but with a little research you can match their products and beat their prices. That leaves you more cash to spend where it matters - in the speaker. Using a streamer like the Apple Airport Express (80) with iTunes or a Squeezebox Classic (170) with its own software

    you can get a bitperfect stream to the DAC of your choice.

    With the Airport Express, unless you control from your Apple or PC, you will need a remote control - An iPhone will do it, and you may have one. The Squeezebox costs more, but comes with a remote and will replace your FM Tuner giving you access to high quality internet radio streams from all over the world. The Radio 3 stream on my Squeezebox (with my DAC) is better than my Quad 77 FM Tuner. So, bitperfect from a streamer by S/PDIF (Optical or phono lead) into a DAC.

    Here are some suggestions

    Cambridge DACmagic 230

    Beresford 7520 ( 140+VAT) or Beresford Caiman (200+VAT)

    TC-BMC2 (200)

    The Beresfords have four switchable inputs, a fixed line out and a variable line out controlled by an analogue volume control. Good 'phones amp. Will serve as "Pre-amp"

    The TC BMC-2 has 3 (?) switchable inputs, nice volume control and a good 'phones amp. Balanced outputs. Will serve as "Pre-amp"

    The other two have more limited facilities.

    I use a Beresford Caiman for its sound, its flexibility and because it looks the part in the lounge.

    So for about 200 you can get an extremely competent DAC and, provided you need no analogue inputs, a Pre-amp as well. Add the cost of your chosen streaming system - under 400 plus any old computer in the house, which you can still use for other things. That leaves a lot of extra cash for amp and speakers. Spend more if you like, but you will be paying for over engineered products that will sound very little better, if at all.

    Put the money in the Harbeth!

    Well, that's what I think.
    Last edited by HUG-1; 28-02-2010, 07:38 PM. Reason: Removed brand