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Feb. 2018
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Harbeth M30.1 in a really small room?

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  • Harbeth M30.1 in a really small room?

    I have a nr.2 stereo-system in a small room of 2,5 x 4,0 meter. I am now considering to upgrade from Rogers LS3/5A to Harbeth M30.1. Will M30.1 be too big for this small room and give a boomy bass?

    {Moderator's comment: that is not a really small room as far as we are concerned! That's considerably bigger than a typical UK "back bedroom" which plays a part in the design of smaller Harbeth speakers}

  • #2
    Very typical room size

    You should be OK with the size but the final result will also depend, somewhat, on the furnishings. Half of the M30.1s I have sold have been destined for use in similar size rooms and they work very well.

    Best bet is to borrow a pair from your dealer and then you will know for sure.

    Comment


    • #3
      Rooms and absorption

      I had rogers ls 3/5a in similar room size. Check the setup picture thread. After changing to 30.1 i had to fight with room modes. Placed on the long wall and some acoustic treatment it works perfect.

      Without and less furniture i recommend to stay with your 3/5.

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      • #4
        Are 40 year old shoeboxes better than M30.1?

        Thanks for reply. Does this mean that Rogers LS3/5A are very close being as good as M30.1?

        Comment


        • #5
          It's just a cult - the reality is different

          I doubt that is what tcb meant. The LS3/5a, Rogers or otherwise, is no match for the M30.1.

          I actually did a demo a few weeks back, with a pair of Rogers LS3/5a against the P3ESR. In comparison the LS3/5a was less sensitive, sounded smaller, thinner, less dynamic and with a dramatic loss of bass and presence. They might have 'cult' status now but they really don't stand up to their modern cousins.

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          • #6
            A cult

            Originally posted by hifi_dave View Post
            I doubt that is what tcb meant. The LS3/5a, Rogers or otherwise, is no match for the M30.1.

            I actually did a demo a few weeks back, with a pair of Rogers LS3/5a against the P3ESR. In comparison the LS3/5a was less sensitive, sounded smaller, thinner, less dynamic and with a dramatic loss of bass and presence. They might have 'cult' status now but they really don't stand up to their modern cousins.
            Maybe you're right, but IMO Rogers LS3/5A are not only "cult speakers" and better than you describe them. I have compared them also against Merlin, Sonus Faber Cremona Auditor and Dynaudio Special 25, and I think they sound great in a small room. That is also the main reason why I still have them after 8 years. I also had Rogers LS3/5 A back in late seventies, so you're right; they are cult for me. That said, I now consider to try something else, but they have to be good.

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            • #7
              Big differences

              Yes, I was thinking about saying exactly the same, having just recently done an AB comparison between my 11 ohm LS3/5As and the M30.1. Using a level-matched AB instantaneous comparison switchbox, the differences really leap out at you.

              I still like and respect the LS3/5A design, and struggle to imagine a time when I'll eventually part with mine - they are undoubtedly very endearing and easy to listen to. But if dynamics, transparency and neutrality are the goal, there are better options out there today.

              Oh, and my room is fairly small (3.6 by 3.3 metres), and bass boom is not an issue with the M30.1 - far from it. I have them about 8 foot apart on the long wall, either side of the chimney breast, and no special acoustic treatment beyond a carpet and the usual soft furnishings. The M30.1 does seem to be fairly unfussy about placement.

              Mark

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              • #8
                Room modes in small rooms

                Of course modern Harbeths are superior to their BBC ancestors of a few decades ago. The question here is if it also pays to go one model size up, given the small size of the room. In my view, this is a seriously small room, and I would not want to buy a proper full range speaker like the M30.1 without auditioning at home.

                Room modes are very unpleasant. Room equalization with something like the DSpeaker Antimode 2.0 might help, but in a small room room modes are in a relatively high frequency band. Correcting those frequencies only works for a fixed listening position.
                Willem

                {Moderator's comment: have you seen the pictures of Alan working on the prototype C7ES3 in a small bedroom at home, some years ago? We are very much aware of achieving a great sound in a small space, very typical for our oriental users set-up}

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                • #9
                  LS3/5a OK, until you hear Harbeths

                  Originally posted by Ketil View Post
                  Thanks for reply. Does this mean that Rogers LS3/5A are very close being as good as M30.1?
                  No, that's not what i wanted to say. I meant that if you put to much energy in your room you may get problems listening with higher volume. That's not a matter of quality or better/worse, it's physics. I prefer the "right" size.

                  I had the Rogers LS3/5A 15Ohm and the SHL5 (which i really loved in my bigger living room) so i decided to try the P3ESR. The Rogers have a certain mid-magic and some other qualities, but compared to the new P3ESR there was no reason to keep them. The P3ESR is the same concept but does everything, i mean each discipline (stage, details, vocals (!)) better than the Rogers. If you don't compare you can live happy many years with the rogers, but the moment you listen to the P3ESR there's no way back.

                  If your room can do the 30.1, got for them!!! Get both from your local dealer and try at home. It depends on you room situation (acoustic, furnishing, distances) and the type of music and your listening volume which suits better to you. I liked to have a little more reserve, so i decided to go for the 30.1. But it was a 55/45 decision, also because of the price and invest in room treatment (absorbers, basstraps, diffusors). Without them i would have stay with my P3ESR. Hope this helps.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Ordered M30.1

                    Ok, Harbeth-friends, I have decided to give M30.1 a chance and have ordered a pair. Thanks for help.

                    Regards
                    Ketil Hansen
                    from Norway

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Ordered!

                      Good choice.

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                      • #12
                        Do it

                        You won't regret it.

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                        • #13
                          Update?

                          Hi Ketil,

                          How did the M30.1 work out for you?

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                          • #14
                            Too much bass?

                            Originally posted by ccyork View Post
                            Hi Ketil,

                            How did the M30.1 work out for you?
                            Hi.
                            At first I found they had too much bass, but after a while I thought/hoped this was coused by some problem with my vinyl set up. Anyway; I have now realized that M30.1 is not the right speakers for me and they are sold. At the moment I'm back on Rogers LS3/5A ...

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              A vinyl issue not a speaker one?

                              If you use vinyl only, I'm not surprised at your findings in all honesty, as treble dynamics are hardly a vinyl strong point. This, coupled with a tendency to thicken bass frequencies (it takes a VERY dedicated vinyl setup to minimise this), may well have given you this impression. Such a shame.

                              If vinyl is the only source (I don't know what you use), then a leaner-toned and 'crisper' style of speaker may well be better for you. I can think of a few UK made models from NEAT and Kudos to name but two and these have a far more 'assertive' and 'energetic' character rather different from Harbeths and are well liked in vinyl circles.....

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