HUG - here for all audio enthusiasts


"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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Cleaning and repairing vinyl records

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  • Cleaning and repairing vinyl records

    We've mentioned here and here about the surface noise problems that bedevil vinyl LP records. If we record from the LP into a computer i.e. we digitise the record, we can attempt to restore and repair problems with the disc.

    First we need to capture the audio from the turntable. Here.

    Then we can attempt to remove some of the defects of the vinyl disc. Here. You can see how a digital recording of an analogue LP has enough resolution so that even the clicks are well coded here. Zoomed-in, there are 44000 sample spots every second in a CD digital recording and these can be manipulated in a suitable audio editing program. Clicks can literally be painted out.

    Remember! Every time we remove defects (clicks, scratches etc.) we remove some musical detail. But if that musical detail is anyway obscured by surface noise then it has gone anyway. And gone means gone. Irrecoverable. All we can do is disguise the limitation of the gramophone record, not turn it magically into a super wide-band, pristine, high dynamic range CD digital recording. That would be impossible. We can't put back what is simple not there and never was.
    Alan A. Shaw
    Designer, owner
    Harbeth Audio UK

  • #2
    Digital Audio Editor - Magix Audio Cleaning Lab

    I received a mail shot yesterday from Magix, a German software company. As Magix have recently acquired the excellent Sony Vegas video editing source code and will now be the develeopers, my awareness of the Magix brand has increased.

    Magix Audio Cleaning Lab is on offer for the next few days at under half of its list price. Promo video here. Feature set here.

    The tools look like a modern super-set of Adobe Audition (3) at a fraction of the price, and Win10 compatible. I bought it. The facilities to clean-up and manipulate audio (including the Exciter 'which no audiophile should be without') are impressive. The license can be moved from PC to PC.

    It fits with my thinking that one thing we could do at the end of the day (or even off-site in the early evening) at the Bristol hifi show next February, is a simple hands-on audio "masterclass" (sounds ridiculously grand, but I can't think of a better name) where it's possible to demonstrate how the ear finds certain manipulation from 'flat' rather attractive. We see evidence time after time that listeners do not appreciate that as the ear is a level/frequency sensitive organ, the very first step in making valid comparisons is to be sure that level and frequency are being compared like for like, and if not, the sort of tricks the ear will play on the listener.
    Alan A. Shaw
    Designer, owner
    Harbeth Audio UK


    • #3

      Is it better than Audacity, in functionality or ease of use?