HUG - here for all audio enthusiasts

The Harbeth User Group is the primary channel for public communication with Harbeth's HQ. If you have a 'scientific mind' and are curious about how the ear works, how it can lead us to make the right - and wrong - audio equipment 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 should be accessible to non-experts and able to be tried-out at home without deep technical knowledge. From a design perspective, today's award winning Harbeths could not have been designed any other way.

Alternatively, if you just like chatting about audio and subjectivity rules for you, then the Subjective Soundings area is you. If you are quite set in your subjectivity, then HUG is likely to be a bit too fact based for you, as many of the contributors have maximised their pleasure in home music reproduction by allowing their head to rule their heart. 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 only, although HUG is really not the best place to have these sort of purely subjective airings.

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

That's it! Enjoy!

{Updated Oct. 2017}
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Close wall placement - Model suggestions

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  • Close wall placement - Model suggestions

    Hi I am planning on buying a pair of Harbeths for a 2 channel system.

    Would like to get a recommendation on which model to buy.

    I have a Macintosh MA6500 amp (2 x 120/200/250 watts (8/4/2 ohms)

    I will be using a Bluesound Hi Res streamer (mostly tidal) or an oppo for CDs.

    Room dimensions are 16 x 20 x 8 high

    The speakers will be placed on the 16 foot side

    one side has a corner - I can move the speaker 3 feet in from the corner

    The other side is open to the family room - 3 foot opening - I have a few feet in from the opening

    The speakers will be 6 to 10 feet apart depending on how far they are placed from the corner

    I don't have a lot of room behind the speakers - they will be 1 to 2 feet at most from the wall (WAF)

    opposite the speakers (at the other end of the 20 foot room) is an 11 foot opening to the dinning room

    the dining room is 10.5 feet wide

    Most listening is done in a group setting during get togethers or while sitting in the dinning room

    Which harbeth model would work best for the room size and being close to the wall?

    Budget is not that important but the 40.1 would be stretching my budget so I would prefer one of the others

    If the 40.1 is the only solution I could swing it

    Thanks in advance for any advice or suggestions

  • #2
    Regardless of which speakers you select, you might benefit from adding a room correction unit to your system.
    The McIntosh MEN220 is one such a device:
    Another lower cost solution is the DSPeaker Anti-Mode 2.0 Dual Core:


    • #3
      My experience is Harbeth speakers are less sensitive to close wall placement than most other speakers. I have the SHL5 + and they are less than 2 feet from the back wall and on either side of a sofa and they sound superb. I looked at the 30.1 and didn't notice room placement sensitivity differences so I went for the fuller sound I preferred with the SHL5 +. You have a good sized room so you can accommodate the larger end of the Harbeth range I think.


      • #4
        Of course, if your budget permits, then the 40.1 would be the best option. After that, the SuperHL5 Plus, possibly with subwoofers added for a little bit more bottom-end extension. The 40.1ís will like the power output of your amplifier and will put it to good use.


        • #5
          Your room is similar in dimensions to my demo room and I can happily demo all of the Harbeth range in there with no problems.

          I use all the speakers with a slight toe in and in that situation, the M40.2 is only around 10 inches from wall to rear edge of the speaker and they sound wonderful like that. The SHL5+ has around 13 - 15 inches from wall to rear edge with no issues. I would therefore advise that any of the range will be suitable for your room, depending on budget.