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"This Harbeth User Group (HUG) is the Manufacturer's own managed forum dedicated to natural sound, realisable by controlling the confounding variables between tthe microphone and the listeners' ears.

For example, the design of and interaction between the hifi amplifier and its speaker load can and potentially will alter the sound balance of what you hear. To reproduce the sounds captured by the recording microphones, as Harbeth speakers are designed to do, you would naturally select system components (sources, electronics, cables and so on) that do not color the sound before it reaches the speakers.

Identifying components for their system neutrality should, logically, start with the interpretation and analysis of their technical, objective performance, as any and every deviation from a measurably flat frequency response at any point along the serial chain from microphone to ear is very likely to cause the total system to have an audible sonic personality. That includes the contribution of the listening room itself.

HUG specialises in making complex technical matters simple to understand, aiding the identification of audio components likely to maintain a faithful relationship between the recorded sound and the sound you hear. With our heritage of natural sound, HUG cannot be really be expected to guide in the selection, approval, endorsement or even discussion of equipment that is intend to introduce a significantly personalised sound to the audio signal chain. For that you should do your own research and above all, make the effort to visit an Authorised Dealer and listen to your music at your loudness on your loudspeakers through the various electronics offered there. There is no on-line substitute for that time investment in a dealer's showroom.

If you desire to intentionally tune your system sound to your personal taste, please consider carefully how much you should rely upon the subjective opinions of strangers. Their hearing acuity and taste will be different to yours, as will be their motives and budget, their listening distance, listening loudness and listening room treatment, not necessarily leading to appropriate equipment selection and listening satisfaction for you.

Alternatively, if faithfully reproducing the sound intended by the composer, score, conductor and musicians over your speakers is your audio dream, then understanding something of the issues likely to fulfill that objective is what this forum has been helping with since 2006. Welcome!"


Jan. 2018
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Foundation and Skylan

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  • Foundation and Skylan

    I am currently in the process of acquiring a pair of P3ESR's (Rosewood), and have been reading what there is to offer about stands before purchasing. The Foundation stands retail for quite a bit more than the Skylan's.

    There has been a thread previous to this that mentions Foundation, however, I could not find an applicable response. The FAQ's section on the website clearly recommends Skylan stands, however, a quick trip to the Foundation website appears to reveal that they are produced specifically for Harbeths - their models being named after the speaker model they best suit.

    Does anyone have experience directly comparing the two? I just found it peculiar that Foundation seems to cater specifically to Harbeth, while Skylan seems a bit more generic. Yet, Harbeth recommends the latter. I figured they must be significantly better. Care to share?

  • #2
    Hi Haligonian:

    First of all, the premise of Foundation's design is that a light, open-frame stand will give better sound, particularly with Harbeths, than a design with one or more pillars that is intended to be mass-loaded.

    Whether that's true or not, I couldn't say, though some believe it is. But as far as the P3ESR is concerned, it really doesn't matter, because Foundation's design for that speaker is a completely ordinary, fillable, single-pillar metal stand. And according to their website, it's more expensive than either the Skylan single-post stand (under $200) or the Syklan dual-post stand (under $300), both of which are excellent and made specifically for the P3ESR.

    There might be more of a question if you were talking about another Harbeth model, but since it's the P3ESR, I'd go for the Skylans.

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    • #3
      Haligonian,

      I think EricW has given an excellent response. The Foundation stands seem to give the Harbeth speakers an airy, quick sound with seeming less emphasis on the bass compared to Skylan. However, that is latest version of the Foundation which is a welded stand. The stands for the P3ESR is much different.

      John

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      • #4
        Thanks for the response(s). I think you've answered my question. Although Mr. Shaw outlines EVERYTHING you need to know on the Harbeth website, some like myself will insist on making things confusing.

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        • #5
          Hi. FWIW, I have the Skylans for my Super HL5s. Skylans are designed to fit the Harbeth line, so you should have no worries there. I have not compared them to any other stands. I simply followed the recommendation of Harbeth on their website. By the way (don't laugh) but I mass loaded the stands with (clean) kitty litter at the recommendation of Skylan. HTH

          Regards from Chicago

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          • #6
            Originally posted by QChicago View Post
            By the way (don't laugh) but I mass loaded the stands with (clean) kitty litter at the recommendation of Skylan. HTH

            Regards from Chicago
            How is that working out for you?!

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            • #7
              It works great. Nice imaging and separation. I have not tried other substances so I can't A/B anything for you. However, as I said, I followed the recommendation of the Skylan Stand owner (forgot his name). He said he's tried / tested rice, sand, shot, and clay (kitty litter) and likes the litter. What can I say? LOL

              Honestly, I think stands matter but what REALLY makes a difference is room configuration and treatments. But, that's another ball of wax. :-)

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              • #8
                I also have a pair of Skylan stands to go with the Harbeth SHL5's. Not only are the stands an upgrade over the Foundation Stands that I had sonically, the build is absolutely first rate. Noel is very passionate about his work and it really shows in his stands. I have had the pleasure of meeting him a few times to purchase stands and he could talk about audio all day and night!!! Truly one of the outstanding guys in audio

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                • #9
                  I have the same stands and, at Noel's suggestion, I loaded them with (of all things) kitty litter. I'm curious to know what, if anything, you are using. According to Noel, the clay (litter) works as well or better than sand, shot or rice. PS, yes it's clean kitty litter. :-)

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