"This Harbeth User Group (HUG) is the Manufacturer's own managed forum dedicated to natural sound from microphone to ear, achievable by recognising and controlling the numerous confounding variables that exist along the audio chain. The Harbeth designer's objective is to make loudspeakers that contribute little of themselves to the music passing through them.

Identifying system components for their sonic neutrality should logically proceed from the interpretation and analysis of their technical, objective performance, since deviations from a flat frequency response at any point along the signal chain from microphone to ear is likely to create the audible sonic personality that you hear. This includes the contribution of the listening room itself. To accurately reproduce the recorded sound, as Harbeth speakers are designed to do, you would be advised to select system components (sources, electronics, cables and so on) that do not color the sound before it reaches the speakers.

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. This may or may not be what you wish to achieve, but any deviation from a flat response is a step away from a truly neutral system. HUG has extensively discussed amplifiers and the methods for seeking the most objectively neutral amongst a plethora of available product choices.

HUG specialises in making complex technical matters simple to understand, such as the relationship between recorded sound and the sound you hear. With our heritage of natural sound and pragmatism, HUG cannot be expected to be a place to get deeply into discussing the selection, approval or endorsement of non-Harbeth system elements selected, knowingly or not, to create a significantly personalised sound. 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 offerings there. There is really no on-line substitute for time invested in a dealer's showroom because 'tuning' your system to taste is such a highly personal matter.

Please consider carefully how much you should rely upon and be influenced by 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, loudness and room treatment, not necessarily leading to appropriate equipment selection and listening satisfaction for you.

If some of the science behind faithfully reproducing the sound intended by the composer, score, conductor and musicians over Harbeth speakers is your thing, this forum has been helping with that since 2006. If you just want to share your opinions and photos with others then the unrelated Harbeth Speakers Facebook page may be for you. Either way, welcome to the world of Harbeth!"

Feb. 2018
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  • #16
    Originally posted by A.S. View Post
    One thing to consider with strip ribbon tweeters: they project sound in a vertical strip with far less sound radiated laterally. In that respect they are wholly unlike any musical instrument I can think of, so far from being a solution to natural sound, on the face of it, as a solution it is quite the opposite.
    Ribbon tweeters are usually mounted with their long axis oriented vertically. I think that what you meant to say was that they project more sound laterally than they do vertically. That is, the directivity pattern of the ribbon tweeter is more narrow in the vertical direction than in the horizontal direction.

    For example, the measured horizontal and vertical directivity patterns of the Visaton MHT 12 ribbon tweeter can be found here. Click on the "Enlarge image" button to see the plots in finer detail. It is evident that the horizontal (lateral) dispersion pattern is much wider than the vertical one.

    For comparison purposes, we can also take a look at the measured directivity patterns of the Visaton G 25 FFL 25mm fabric dome tweeter that can be found here. Being a dome tweeter, its dispersion pattern is the same in both the horizontal and vertical directions.


    • #17
      For those who want a floorstander, perhaps the Xtender - in a version to match the P3ESR - could be revived.