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HUG - here for all audio enthusiasts

INTRODUCTION- PLEASE READ FIRST TO UNDERSTAND THIS FORUM!

"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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Harbeth HL Compact 7ES-3 specific

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  • The C7ES-3s are a revalation

    I've owned many speakers in my long 'career' in hifi. The C7ES-3's I've had since Feb 1st have been a revelation. 'Balanced and Natural' are the key for me. They have taken a little time to become accustomed to their unassuming nature but well worth the wait.

    I too find that I can listen at higher levels as no area of the sound is 'obvious' i.e. beautifully balanced. Having said that listening at low levels is still very beautiful.

    I hope you enjoy your new purchase as much as I.
    Mazeltov!!

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    • A much more important upgrade than I expected...

      Originally posted by AlanBstone View Post
      I hope you enjoy your new purchase as much as I.
      Mazeltov!!
      Thanks AlanBstone, I hope you enjoy yours as much as I already enjoy mine !

      I received them last Thursday evening and I have been away from home during the weekend but I loved what I heard during the too few hours I have listen to the music with them. That's not a surprise since I have auditioned them twice and decided that they will be my next speakers. I am still beginning to really discover them but one thing is already crystal clear; they are a much more important upgrade than I thought they would be.

      I will write several lines once I'll experience them more. My biggest difficulty right now is to listen to how they sound and stop trying to remember how such and such piece of music sounded with the Saras.

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      • Relax and enjoy - cease to compare ....

        Hi Ummaya, just sit back, relax & enjoy the beautiful music that your new C7 makes & in no time, you'll forget about the Saras.

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        • Listening and learning

          Originally posted by ummaya View Post

          I will write several lines once I'll experience them more. My biggest difficulty right now is to listen to how they sound and stop trying to remember how such and such piece of music sounded with the Saras.
          That is only natural. It isn't YOU doing the comparison it is your EARS and AUDIO MEMORY. Don't forget they require a bit of time to burn in.....and your brain to burn in to the new sound. Think of them as a musical instrument.

          As my signature is on another forum

          Harbeth is for life - yours and the music

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          • The difficulty of explaining audible differences

            I really can understand the tricks that ones audio memory can play on you. But the core issue is that audio reproduction at home is nothing more than an illusion. Whilst you listen you (hopefully) allow yourself to be drawn into an enjoyable trance, overriding the logical part of your brain which says 'these performers just can't be here in front of me, in my room!'.

            INHO to begin to make any sort of credible comparison between two speakers that create an entirely different listening experience - especially if you have been seduced by one for 27 years! - you'd need a whole vocabulary of words to describe to yourself, and then others, just what you are hearing. How the colours in the new dream differ from those of the old one. And that's the sort of self-taught vocabulary that a speaker designer develops over a working lifetime. You are really going to struggle to shorten that learning curve to days and weeks. I just wouldn't strain yourself: both are wrong; both are right. Neither is reality - both create an illusion. You know what we hold dear and the target of neutrality that we aim for because we've spelled it out for 30+ years. Other brands doubtless would have entirely different and equally valid objectives for their target users. But if the broadcast/monitoring market is not their business you would expect a significantly different 'take' to ours. Plus of course, bought-in drive units perform up to their potential and no more.

            The really challenging task, even for someone who works on loudspeakers as a designer, is teasing out level differences from coloration or quality differences when listening. They may in fact have the same sort of sonic signature. But the designer can play around with the levels, up or down, but he's really stumped by latent coloration issues. Even an experienced listener may mistake one for the other. I recall that during the design of one speaker I just could not decide what was troubling me. Eventually, after throwing every sort of music and speech I could think of at the design, I began to home-in on a problem in a certain sonic band. And once my audio palate was sensitised to this issue I could hear it every time, after just a few seconds of exposure. So it was a real issue in a specific audio band for sure. But was it something to do with the loudness in that band? Too loud or, believe it or not, too quiet? Or was it a quality issue due to some mechanical resonance perhaps deep within the drive unit(s)? This tail-chasing went on for several days until I conceived a way of isolating one issue from another: I hooked up a very fine-band digital graphic equaliser and applied massive boost in and around the problematic band until the sonic issue was painful to listen to. Then, when I'd narrowed down the problem to a very precise and well defined frequency band I sucked out the energy. My reasoning was that if the issue significantly audibly diminished then it must be a level inbalance - if the effect was still troubling then a coloration problem. In fact, it was a level issue and reworking the crossover in that region (actually to fill an energy hole - the audibility problem was not too much but too little energy) solved the problem.

            I'm fairly sure that I video'd this whole graphic boost session and it's in the archive - I'll look for it.

            So, in short, if I sometimes struggle to separate-out the wheat from the chaff and I'm paid to do it, what chance have you!?

            P.S. We've talked many times about making instantaneous A-B speaker comparisons using a relay change-over arrangement. It is the best solution to exploring differences between speakers because we humans are fairly good at side-by-side comparisons but almost useless at absolute comparisons over a period of time. Has anyone's wife bought a dress, shoes or handbag only to find when home the colour doesn't exactly match some pre-existing item of clothing? And yet, in the store they were certain that the shade was exactly correct!

            P.P.S. Just to remind newer readers that we've looked at speaker comparisons before here and explanation of the different 'projection' of sound you'll typically hear in a hifi store. And video here and here, how I use an instantaneous foot-operated switch over when comparing and the listening process [Sorry! I can't remember which video showed that - anyone remind me?] . The video has sound: can you here the difference in tonality between the A and B speakers?
            Alan A. Shaw
            Designer, owner
            Harbeth Audio UK

            Comment


            • I'm enjoying the learning process!

              Originally posted by Gan CK View Post
              Hi Ummaya, just sit back, relax & enjoy the beautiful music that your new C7 makes & in no time, you'll forget about the Saras.
              The music coming out the C7 is indeed beautiful. The Saras...well, as AlanBstone said that's not ME thinking about them but my audio memory, but it seems that this happens less and less.

              Originally posted by AlanBstone View Post
              . ..and your brain to burn in to the new sound.
              That's a wonderful process.


              Originally posted by A.S. View Post
              Whilst you listen you (hopefully) allow yourself to be drawn into an enjoyable trance, overriding the logical part of your brain which says 'these performers just can't be here in front of me, in my room!'.
              I close my eyes, let myself to be drawn into an enjoyable trance and after several minutes the C7 disappear and it seems like the performers are in my living room playing only for me.

              Originally posted by A.S. View Post
              You are really going to struggle to shorten that learning curve to days and weeks.
              The truth is that I do not struggle to shorten the learning curve; I do not look forward, do not try to achieve anything but simply tremendously enjoy the learning process.

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              • my Harbie just arrive


                Hi-Fi by jerrylimlee, on Flickr

                Harbeth C7-ES3 Speakers, Luxman L-505U integrated amps,Rega Saturn cd player, Rega P3-24 turn Table w/PSU, Benz Micro Cartridge ACE, Phono pre-amp Graham Slee ERA Gold 5, Auditorium 23 speaker cable,Vodoo power cable (Mirage for amps,Mojo for cd), and Purist Audio inter connect.

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                • It's not often we see hi-fi systems in a Greek temple and very nice it looks too.

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                  • Is that a can of beer on the Rega?

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                    • I believe that is the Furikiwi stray impulse soakaway and re-generator non abrasive top notch gizmo. It's made from re-cycled nuclear submarines and costs a mere 2599 for the family size. No CD player should be without one !!!

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                      • A bottle of a good wine does a better job!

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                        • Aids in getting more intoxicated with the music.

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                          • Originally posted by Drdennis View Post
                            Is that a can of beer on the Rega?
                            No Sir, it's a can of meat sauce, just put it their to add weight to the front end of the cd player. With 3 symposium rollerblock series 2 under the cd plus the vodoo power cable, the rear end of the cd has more weight. That's why the meatsauce can. thanks for looking.

                            {Moderator's comment: ............. }

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                            • sweet set-up sweetsound. the luxman looks like it could benefit with a bit of ventilation, or is the cd player used to weigh it down as well. :-)

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                              • Originally posted by sweetsound View Post
                                No Sir, it's a can of meat sauce, just put it their to add weight to the front end of the cd player. With 3 symposium rollerblock series 2 under the cd plus the vodoo power cable, the rear end of the cd has more weight. That's why the meatsauce can. thanks for looking.

                                {Moderator's comment: ............. }
                                that ought to put more meat into the music :D sorry can't help it

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