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INTRODUCTION - PLEASE READ FIRST TO UNDERSTAND THIS FORUM!

"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 an audible sonic personality in what you hear. That 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 on the face of it, any deviation from a flat response - and the frequency balance of tube amplifiers are usually influenced by their speaker load - 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, 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 and pragmatism, HUG cannot be expected to be a place to discuss 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 faithfully reproducing the sound intended by the composer, score, conductor and musicians in your home and over Harbeth speakers is your audio dream, then understanding something of the issues likely to fulfill that intention is what this forum has been helping to do since 2006. Welcome!"


Feb. 2018
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Reviews

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  • Reviews

    Perhaps you didn't know it, but at the bottom of each Hi-Fi speaker page on the main Harbeth site (www.harbeth.co.uk) there is a list of reviews of the relevant speaker. These reviews are magazine or e-zine reviews. Many of these reviews are re-presented on another Harbeth page:

    http://www.harbeth.co.uk/sales/countries/USA.php

    ========

    User reviews are also found on the Harbeth site at:

    http://www.harbeth.co.uk/library/our...peak/index.php

    ========

    Beyond the Harbeth site, highly complimentary user reviews can be found at:

    http://www.audioreview.com/mfr/harbe...6_1594crx.aspx

    To date on audioreview.com, the P3's have garnered an average of 4.87 from 15 reviewers; the Compact 7's ... 4.87 from 30 reviewers; the Model 30 ... 4.75 from 4 reviewers. These scores are out of a possible 5.

    No other Harbeth model has been reviewed on audioreview.com

    For some reason audioreview.com classifies Harbeths as "floorstanders".

    =======

    If you know of Harbeth reviews posted beyond the locations cited in this reply, please report them in this thread.

  • #2
    Test Super HL5

    A rather complimentary review of the Super HL5 from "image hifi". Unfortunately it's in German but it does contain some nice pictures.

    http://www.inputaudio.de/inhalt/medi...image_hifi.pdf

    Comment


    • #3
      Hello friends, Alan,
      I don't speak or read German, but it seems they put it at a very high level of quality, in every field. Anybody to translate and briefly describe?
      An audiophile friend in Switzerland told me that Swiss "experts" believe that Harbeths aren't worth a penny for what they claim they can do...
      Well, USA, UK, China, Japan, East Asia, Europe, Greece (that's us) and a hell of other countries, we are all stupid amateurs, with so poor listening qualities! So are internationally acclaimed reviewers -and above all- so are the BBC people, aren't they? That was my reply...
      Nevertheless, let the Swiss engineers build a Swissarbeth costing less than 3.000 euros (ex. SHL5), and probably it won't sell even one pair...
      Come on guys, lets be serious and mature listeners... England always supported its products. Ok, might be there some "colour" in this, but, when the whole world is crying "this is in every respect an excellent product", then the Swiss audio industry or audio experts should baptize their tongues into their brains before stating something. Except if they come from Mars or Venus...
      I hope the (probably) one only person who said this was a narrow minded merchant who tried to sell his own staff, nothing more.
      This message is to remind to everybody the difference between criticism (with purpose) and mature judgement (with common sense).
      Thanks,
      Regards from Greece,
      Thanos

      Comment


      • #4
        Swiss cuckoos?

        To my less than perfect knowledge, I don't think there is one pair of Harbeths in the whole of Switzerland.
        Alan A. Shaw
        Designer, owner
        Harbeth Audio UK

        Comment


        • #5
          Hi again, Alan and friends.
          I'm posting from my second mail adress.
          I was almost sure about Alan's answer... Of course they don't have Harbeths there... All my wristwatches are Swiss. So far, so good. Positively thinking, I really wish they should start distributing and buying Harbeths. It's gonna help them. When you build Revox, and Rolex, and Omega, and fine chocolate (after Cadburry-my personal choice), you ought to have wider knowledge of serious Audio, especially of suberb quality at such modest prices, don't you?
          Anyway, Thank You Alan for the clarification. Sometimes you are too good, too polite, too democratic and cultured to be properly appreciated by some kinds of people... But, I am perfectly certain that everyone in the Harbeth society -and not only- faithfully believes and supports you. Don't change. Never.
          Best regards from Athens, which (to your envy I hope) stands below bright sun and at 20 degrees Celsius... Wish you were here (not Pink Floyd).
          Thanks again,
          Thanos.

          Comment


          • #6
            Mass again

            Ths stand has 40 pounds of weights in it. The review says that the HLP3 needs Mass to perform well.

            What about it Alan? This is the second time in 10 days i have been confronted with the argument that one needs "lots of mass in the stands" for HLP3s.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Frihed89
              Ths stand has 40 pounds of weights in it. The review says that the HLP3 needs Mass to perform well.

              What about it Alan? This is the second time in 10 days i have been confronted with the argument that one needs "lots of mass in the stands" for HLP3s.
              Who says the stands need to be heavy? Not me. Once again, one has to tease out the position as we, the designers/manufacturers see it, and as the media see it. There is personal opinion, and there is the manufacturers opinion: both are equally valid (I suppose) but if only the manufactuer's opinion was in red type and the reviewer's personal opinion was in blue type then you really could extract maximum value from a review.

              Remember: very few reviewers contact us at any time during or after the review. As a general rule, and a matter of long standing policy, we are not on familiar terms with reviewers so the first we hear is when the magazine hits the shops. Take the SHL5 review in HiFi Choice: there are several trivial factual errors which we could have put right and saved much confusion - for example the sensitivity was erroneously quoted as 90dB.

              There are exceptions: Dr. Robert Greene of TAS is a shining example of how a reviwer with both rare fundamental technical knowledge (which far exceeds mine) and the personal integrity and curiosity will check the details of a review for accuracy before hitting 'print'.
              Alan A. Shaw
              Designer, owner
              Harbeth Audio UK

              Comment


              • #8
                I believe it

                I wont name brands, but every mini-monitor i have tried on the Lak stands sounds just fine to me - some better than others.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Compact 7 review

                  Here's a link to a very positive review of the Compact 7s:

                  http://www.positive-feedback.com/Issue1/tangdsd.htm

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Frihed89
                    Ths stand has 40 pounds of weights in it. The review says that the HLP3 needs Mass to perform well.

                    What about it Alan? This is the second time in 10 days i have been confronted with the argument that one needs "lots of mass in the stands" for HLP3s.

                    I'm listening to my HP3s on granite stands. Can't get much greater mass than that! This is not through design: they're what I had available. The 'speakers sound very, very good indeed. Now I'm wondering: if Alan suggests that they don't need heavy stands, is he suggesting that they DO need less hefty supports to perform at their best? Unfortunately there is no Ikea in South Africa. No Harbeth, either, for that matter, alas.

                    Best

                    David

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Stto much ... too little mass?

                      Originally posted by David Schalkwyk
                      I'm listening to my HP3s on granite stands. Can't get much greater mass than that! This is not through design: they're what I had available. The 'speakers sound very, very good indeed. Now I'm wondering: if Alan suggests that they don't need heavy stands, is he suggesting that they DO need less hefty supports to perform at their best?
                      Ummmm. Now let me check. I think what Alan is saying is that in the great scheme of things (life, the universe ... that sort of thing) that whether the stands are made of San Torme silver, Tropical Belt coal or woven from reeds hand picked and platted by beautiful Polynesian girls, probably - just probably - doesn't matter one jot! "It's the music that matter, man".

                      But Alan has been wrong before. Many times.

                      A
                      Alan A. Shaw
                      Designer, owner
                      Harbeth Audio UK

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I'm headed for Paarl/Wellington next week

                        Beautiful country to work in. Don't know about hifi there. Table grapes are the best in the world.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Frihed89
                          Beautiful country to work in. Don't know about hifi there. Table grapes are the best in the world.

                          There's plenty of "hi-fi" here. But no Harbeth or Ikea. Maybe you could bring me some Lak stands? ;-)

                          Enjoy the visit. I'm in the Cape Town telephone directory if you'd like to make contact.

                          Best wishes

                          David

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Swiss cuckoos?

                            Originally posted by A.S.
                            To my less than perfect knowledge, I don't think there is one pair of Harbeths in the whole of Switzerland.
                            A very good day to Alan and mates!

                            And, according to my information with late last night's call, a very close friend of mine, permanent resident of Zurich, has just ordered his (replacing old equipment) SHL 5s from Germany! He listened to them at my home during a short visit to Athens (he's of Greek origin living in Switzerland for more than 30 years), and didn't think twice... He is -since his early youth-a dedicated fan of Jazz & Classical.

                            So, in answer to any possible blind arrogance, WE STEPED INTO SWITZERLAND! Alan, I think I see you smiling, as usually with a cool-Brit peaceful expression, isn't that so?

                            Warm regards from Athens,
                            Thanos

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Swiss cuckoos?

                              Originally posted by Mank
                              Alan, I think I see you smiling ...
                              Wrong! I laughed out loud when I read that! That's great news.
                              How I wish I could escape from this tricky development stuff to a secret hideaway somewhere in Greece.
                              Alan A. Shaw
                              Designer, owner
                              Harbeth Audio UK

                              Comment

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