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Jan. 2018
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Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

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  • New Skylan stand 'Oreo' spacer for Harbeth Monitor 40.1

    I have found that 'hard coupling' M40.1s to Skylan stands helps to reduce the M40.1's somewhat exaggerated bass. I have been using 3 of the large Acoustic Revive quartz disks between the stands and speakers and that seems to work quite well, but that is really not a practical solution for most people due to their high cost and slippery nature.

    A couple of days ago I got a new set of prototype 'Oreo' spacers from Noel to try between the stands and M40.1s, and I have to say I like them quite a lot. They behave sonically much like the quartz disks, and maybe a bit better. Noel designed the 'Oreos' with 2 layers of hardwood top and bottom, with a layer of softer material between the hardwood layers (based on the same principle of the isolation platforms Noel makes). There is also a magnet in the spacers that holds them in place atop each of the assembly rods on each of the 4 stand pillars so they don't slip around as you position the speakers - a nice touch.

    Noel also mentioned that M40.1 users might try using the Skylan stands without filling them with sand, as sand filling tends to pronounce the bass a little bit. I haven't tried that, but intend to. Included a couple of photos so you could see what they look like when in place between the speaker and stands. Best, Jeff
    Attached Files

    Comment


    • Re: New Skylan stand 'Oreo' spacer for Harbeth Monitor 40.1

      Sorry, the other photos didn't load due to an 'internal server error'. I'll try again later.

      Comment


      • Re: Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

        Has anyone tried any of the symposium products?

        I was looking at fat pads or rollerblock jr's. I was experimenting with room placement and switched cables from cardas NR to DNM speaker cable. It really helped tame the bass. Subtle but definitely better. DNM states that the increase in impedance helps control the amp. Not sure if thats the case, but I'm not changin back anytime soon.

        FYI, I'm using the sorbethane dots from sound anchor between the skylan stands and the M40.1's. I live in earthquake country so the extra bit of adhesion gives me a little confidence that the speakers will stay on the stands if we get a decent shake.

        Comment


        • Re: Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

          Originally posted by Jeff Day View Post
          I've had my Harbeth Monitor 40.1 loudspeakers now for a while, and have really been enjoying them.

          I have been having some problems with too much bass output with the majority (but not all) of electronics I have tried with them, and even with the ones that have been in the acceptable range bass balance is a wee bit more plentiful than I would like.

          I tried placing some wood disks between the speakers and my Skylan stands, and that helped with the previous electronics I was using - not perfect but better. Today out of curiosity I placed a combination of Acoustic Revive RIQ-5010 & RIQ-5010W Quartz Insulators between the speaker stands and speakers, which produced a noticeably more nicely balanced bass response, so I thought I'd pass that tip along to any other M40.1 owners that are experiencing similar issues.

          Also, if anyone has any tips to share in this department I'd love to know about them. Makes me lament the disappearance of tone controls from the world of enthusiast audio.

          Kind regards,

          Jeff
          Hi Jeff,
          I forgot to mention that you might want to consider using Cathedral Sound Room Damping Panels to alleviate your bass problem. I have found them to be very effective, easy to install, very unobtrusive and quite economical.
          They can be purchased from The Cable Company and on their web site you will find technical data and several reviews.
          I believe they currently have a sale if you purchase 4 panels.
          If you decide to give these a try, please let us know what your results were.
          Kind regards,
          Ron

          Comment


          • Re: Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

            Originally posted by Ron Herbster View Post
            Hi Jeff,
            I forgot to mention that you might want to consider using Cathedral Sound Room Damping Panels to alleviate your bass problem. I have found them to be very effective, easy to install, very unobtrusive and quite economical.
            They can be purchased from The Cable Company and on their web site you will find technical data and several reviews.
            I believe they currently have a sale if you purchase 4 panels.
            If you decide to give these a try, please let us know what your results were.
            Kind regards,
            Ron
            Hi Ron,

            Thanks for the suggestion - appreciated. I currently have 3 of the Acoustic Revive acoustic panels in my room, so the room is pretty well treated, and normally bass isn't an issue with the room per se.

            The problem seems to be more related to the speakers themselves, but I have had a couple of ideas on how to ameliorate the bass issues, and little by little I'm moving them the right direction.

            It is a bit of a pain to have to expend such effort to sort the bass out though, and I wish the speakers were a little more evenly balanced on the bottom. Hopefully I'll be able to get things in order, as I really like the speakers other than the bass issues, and I'd hate to think I'd have to part with them because I couldn't make the bass work acceptably in my room.

            Best,

            Jeff

            Comment


            • Re: Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

              Hi Jeff,
              Wonder if you tried your stand without sand? In my limited experience, sand fiilled stand tend to let bass, especially for speakers which need stand, to sound more solid or "obvious".

              Cheers...
              "Bath with Music"

              Comment


              • Re: Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

                Originally posted by keithwwk View Post
                Hi Jeff,
                Wonder if you tried your stand without sand? In my limited experience, sand fiilled stand tend to let bass, especially for speakers which need stand, to sound more solid or "obvious".

                Cheers...
                Hi Keith,

                Thanks for the reminder. I had intended to remove the sand and see if that would help, but got distracted and forgot about it. I'll have to do that soon.

                Best,

                Jeff

                Comment


                • Re: Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

                  Originally posted by keithwwk View Post
                  Hi Jeff,
                  Wonder if you tried your stand without sand? In my limited experience, sand fiilled stand tend to let bass, especially for speakers which need stand, to sound more solid or "obvious".

                  Cheers...
                  Hi Keith,

                  I removed all the sand from my Skylan stands, however, it didn't really make a meaningful difference, so I shall keep trying to figure out what to do.

                  Best,

                  Jeff

                  Comment


                  • Re: Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

                    Can you describe the furnishing, positioning and absorption of the room in which you have these speakers please? As you may have read, I started a thread here recently about optimising the listening room, and hence the listening experience.
                    Alan A. Shaw
                    Designer, owner
                    Harbeth Audio UK

                    Comment


                    • Re: Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

                      Originally posted by A.S. View Post
                      Can you describe the furnishing, positioning and absorption of the room in which you have these speakers please? As you may have read, I started a thread here recently about optimizing the listening room, and hence the listening experience.
                      Hi Alan,

                      Thanks for asking, I appreciate your thoughtfulness in trying to help me sort things out.

                      My listening room is approximately 20 feet wide, 29 feet long, and the ceiling is of variable height from about 10 feet to 20 feet. The floor is carpeted, and the room is treated with 3 Acoustic RWL-3 Acoustic Conditioner panels in the rear corners and one sidewall (http://www.positive-feedback.com/Iss...tic_revive.htm).

                      The speakers are about 110 inches apart, 55 inches from the side walls (measured at the speaker side), and about 55 inches from the wall behind them (measured at the rear of the speaker). The speakers were set up according the method described in Jim Smith's book Get Better Sound where you adjust speaker position to give the most natural string bass sound (Ray Brown's bass was used).

                      It's probably easier to show a couple of room photos than describe it, so please see the accompanying photos.





                      Best,

                      Jeff

                      Comment


                      • Rate your own room ...

                        Hello Jeff,

                        First I'd like to thank you for sharing your room with us and second, congratulate you on a generously proportioned, beautiful and inviting environment. There is a thread here, unrelated to your enquiry, which (when completed) may give some general pointers that could be useful to you and others. Please can I have some feedback from you: after reading the entire thread, could I ask you to rate your living room for acoustic absorption on a scale of 0-10, with 0 being a cave and 10 being an anechoic chamber.

                        I know your answer will be a generalisation, but I'd very much like to know where you put it on an acoustic scale. We're not concerned here about cosmetics (full marks for that!), solely acoustic absorption. You can get a good feel for the acoustics even with your eyes closed. What I do when entering an unknown acoustic environment is to walk around clapping my hands as loudly and crisply together as I can to get a real sharp sonic impulse. This builds a mental picture of the overall sonics of the room - at least in the middle and upper frequencies. Quickly evaluating the low frequencies is more tricky because there isn't enough energy in the hand clap to excite the LF: for that a starting pistol or large firework would be ideal! (Don't try that at home please!)
                        Alan A. Shaw
                        Designer, owner
                        Harbeth Audio UK

                        Comment


                        • Re: Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

                          Jeff,
                          Congrats on a beautiful room and setup! One thing I noticed is that your speakers are the same distance from the back wall to the side walls. Theoretically, at least, this could lead to Allison effects that may be causing the some of the boom you're getting. Just something to consider.

                          Eric

                          Comment


                          • Re: Rate your own room ...

                            Originally posted by A.S. View Post
                            Hello Jeff,

                            First I'd like to thank you for sharing your room with us and second, congratulate you on a generously proportioned, beautiful and inviting environment. There is a thread here, unrelated to your enquiry, which (when completed) may give some general pointers that could be useful to you and others. Please can I have some feedback from you: after reading the entire thread, could I ask you to rate your living room for acoustic absorption on a scale of 0-10, with 0 being a cave and 10 being an anechoic chamber.

                            I know your answer will be a generalisation, but I'd very much like to know where you put it on an acoustic scale. We're not concerned here about cosmetics (full marks for that!), solely acoustic absorption. You can get a good feel for the acoustics even with your eyes closed. What I do when entering an unknown acoustic environment is to walk around clapping my hands as loudly and crisply together as I can to get a real sharp sonic impulse. This builds a mental picture of the overall sonics of the room - at least in the middle and upper frequencies. Quickly evaluating the low frequencies is more tricky because there isn't enough energy in the hand clap to excite the LF: for that a starting pistol or large firework would be ideal! (Don't try that at home please!)
                            Thank you for the kind words, Alan, appreciated. I'm not so sure about a subjective rating, but before answering your question I evaluated my room using an RT60 analyzer via a signal played through the M40.1s, and got a reverb time in the mid 300ms range, which is a typical reading for a studio.

                            That surprised me a little, as I thought the room was more live than that. However, the acoustic panels in the room, combined with the wall fabric hangings, and the carpeted floor probably do deaden things quite a bit.

                            Best,

                            Jeff

                            Comment


                            • Re: Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

                              Originally posted by Eric Pitschmann View Post
                              Jeff,
                              Congrats on a beautiful room and setup! One thing I noticed is that your speakers are the same distance from the back wall to the side walls. Theoretically, at least, this could lead to Allison effects that may be causing the some of the boom you're getting. Just something to consider.

                              Eric
                              Thanks for the kind words Eric.

                              Hmmm ... interesting comment. I spent quite a lot of time moving the speakers around to different positions in the room using the afore mentioned Jim Smith method, and that particular placement position actually gave the most natural sounding bass, with the least amount of bass emphasis.

                              Like all things audio, it seems things can get inexplicably weird at times! :-)

                              Best,

                              Jeff

                              Comment


                              • Re: Harbeth Monitor 40.1 specific

                                According to the Allison theory, and assuming the centre of your woofer is 22" from the floor.

                                If you want to maintain your speakers 55" from the side wall the distance to the rear wall should be 138".

                                If you want to maintain your speakers 55" from the back wall then the distance to the side wall should be 34.79"

                                As I recall the formula is the square root of the product of the shortest distance and the longest distance calculates the other dimension. Usually the woofer to the floor is the shortest.

                                All measurements should be from the centre of the woofer.

                                Comment

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