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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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Which Harbeth for this apartment?

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  • Which Harbeth for this apartment?

    I want to purchase Harbeths for an oddly shaped small studio apartment. Please see the inline floor plan below with approximate measurements. I'm thinking P3ESR or Compact 7es-3. Maybe Monitor 30s?

    Placements I'm considering (open to other suggestions also and I would consider moving furniture):

    1. On wall bracket platform thingies in the positions marked X. toed inwards and downwards, suspended at least 0.5m from the walls and maybe 0.3m from the ceiling.

    2. Similarly suspended in positions X.

    3. On the desk, toed inwards and upwards on recoil stabilizers in positions X.

    My initial preference is for (1). Will this work?

    I listen to classical, jazz, rock. For rock I'd like to hear at least some respectable bass. I particularly like sharp imaging when listening to eg small ensemble baroque or jazz trios. Amp is a Metaxas Ikarus mk2 (40W pc mosfet) which is an amazing amp. Metaxas recommended small BBC-style monitors for the Ikarus which is no longer made I think. Primary source will be a Sugden Optima CD player (mid-1990s) with the much-praised high end Philips CDM-9 Loader/laser and Philips dac and filter TDA1543 and SAA7220. Amp and cd player recently retrieved from storage.

    The floor is hard tiles and there are no curtains at present. The dotted lines represent concrete ceiling beams which hang about 45 cm from the ceiling.

    (Considering the possibility of adding a sub and/or integrating the amp and speakers into a theatre system by adding a second amp and more speakers but this is very much a secondary priority at present).

    Thoughts? All help appreciated.

    EDIT: I suppose the speakers could possibly go on floor stands in about position X if it doesn't matter that there's a sofa between them. Hoping to save floor space hence the bracket suspension idea.


  • #2
    Recommend C7ES3

    Hey, Phil.

    Given your taste in music, I'd consider the Compact 7 ES3's. I own ES2's, and while not as up to date as the 3's, they work really well with all types of music. And even when playing rock, I've never felt the need for a subwoofer.

    On the other hand, I also own Monitor 30's, which are, overall a superior speaker to the ES2's They don't work quite as well as the ES2's on rock, but are wonderful on jazz and classical short of large scale symphonic music.

    I'd seriously consider mounting whatever you decide upon on stands, and you will definitely need to tame what sounds like a fairly live room just a bit. Curtains would help for sure.

    I hope this is helpful. Whichever Harbeth you choose, it'll change the way you listen to music and will likely be your last speaker. The rest of your gear sounds as though it will work fine.

    Cheers!

    Bob LaBarca
    State College, PA
    USA

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    • #3
      Positioning C7ES3 in live room

      Thanks Bob. So: the Compact 7es3's should work in that relatively small area and stands would be better than suspended in mid air from the walls.

      The room is quite live (hand clap) but rugs and maybe some curtains are doable.

      Any ideas about positioning in this room? On floorstands in position X they will be firing into or just past furniture and will have a sofabed between them.

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      • #4
        Can your Furniture Move?

        Hello Phil,

        Challenging space you have there! There won't be a problem with the sofabed between the speakers; probably beneficial. I'd move the speakers closer together for practical reasons. Like Bob, I'd suggest using stands on the floor rather than ceiling or wall mounts. Position x looks best, but your sofa is the problem. Where will you sit? Can the sofa and/or desk move?

        Good luck, Ben
        Ben from UK. Harbeth Super HL5 owner.

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        • #5
          Feedback about your room ...

          Originally posted by BAS-H View Post
          Hello Phil,

          Challenging space you have there! There won't be a problem with the sofabed between the speakers; probably beneficial. I'd move the speakers closer together for practical reasons. Like Bob, I'd suggest using stands on the floor rather than ceiling or wall mounts. Position x looks best, but your sofa is the problem. Where will you sit? Can the sofa and/or desk move?

          Good luck, Ben
          Thanks. One thing about that desk - it's really a table with legs so it is not a fully solid surface right in front of the speaker. Position x for the speaker on a floor stand firing toward the larger sofa would have to be closer to the little sofabed, which would also be moved 20cm closer to the double bed than is badly depicted in my rough drawing - it should be placed centrally along that wall with the bathroom. The larger sofa will catch quite a bit from the other speaker, although if the stand is high enough (<72cm) it can fire over the sofa and into whoever is sitting on the sofa (which will mostly be me). How are stands about 72cm high or more likely to fly with the Compact 7es3?

          The sofa and desk could move.

          The challenging placement is one reason I've thought about P3ESR on recoil mats on the desk as per position (3) with possibly a sub under the desk. Then these are firing my way if I sit on the sofa. I've read people -including Alan - say C7es3 are also good for near field and this is a deliberate design feature of all Harbeths (http://www.harbeth.co.uk/usergroup/s...d-or-1.2m-away), though they might look a bit big on the desk.

          EDIT: and might I have problems "taming" the bass from C7es3s in my space?

          Comment


          • #6
            Bass issues solved with sealed P3ESR?

            Hey, Phil

            I agree with Ben on the furniture issues. as for stands, 72 cm, about 28 inches, is a bit high for the ES-3's. A 20 inch stand will get the tweeter at ear level. Perhaps you could mount the speakers upside down, tweeter at the bottom, Radial driver on top. This may help with bass response issues as well. I think bass issues are more likely with a ported speaker, and another reason you should keep the P3ESR on your short list. It's a sealed box, and I've always liked that "type" of bass.

            As a PS to your other post about audio mags, Paul Seydor's Harbeth reviews are on the ES-3's and the P3 ESR's-how fortuitous!

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            • #7
              Originally posted by KT88 View Post
              Hey, Phil

              I agree with Ben on the furniture issues. as for stands, 72 cm, about 28 inches, is a bit high for the ES-3's. A 20 inch stand will get the tweeter at ear level. Perhaps you could mount the speakers upside down, tweeter at the bottom, Radial driver on top. This may help with bass response issues as well. I think bass issues are more likely with a ported speaker, and another reason you should keep the P3ESR on your short list. It's a sealed box, and I've always liked that "type" of bass.

              As a PS to your other post about audio mags, Paul Seydor's Harbeth reviews are on the ES-3's and the P3 ESR's-how fortuitous!
              Thanks all. I might just have to take a stab and then try to rearrange things to get the best sound. There seem to be a number of posts saying C7es3 will still work in small and odd-shaped spaces. OTOH the little P3ESR might be safer. If I lived in some larger urban centre I could probably try both before buying, but not here.

              Comment


              • #8
                Harbeth - all witl work (bought without audition)

                Hey, Phil.

                Bottom line: you can't go wrong with either model. I've said this as well, to several other folks on this forum: I bought both my Harbeth models having never heard them before they arrived at my home. They are that good, man!

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