"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. Deviations from a flat frequency response at any point along the signal chain from microphone to ear is likely to give an audible sonic personality to the system at your ear; this includes the significant contribution of the listening room itself. To accurately reproduce the recorded sound as Harbeth speakers are designed to do, you would be best 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 will alter the sound balance of what you hear. This may or may not be what you wish to achieve, but any deviation from a flat response is a step away from a truly neutral system. HUG has extensively discussed amplifiers and the methods for seeking the most objectively neutral among a plethora of product choices.

HUG specialises in making complex technical matters simple to understand, getting at the repeatable facts in a post-truth environment where objectivity is increasingly ridiculed. With our heritage of natural sound and pragmatic design, HUG is not the best place to discuss non-Harbeth audio components selected, knowingly or not, to introduce a significantly personalised system 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. Our overall objective here is to empower readers to make the factually best procurement decisions in the interests of lifelike music at home.

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. Always keep in mind that without basic test equipment, subjective opinions will reign unchallenged. With test equipment, universal facts and truths are exposed.

If some of the science behind faithfully reproducing the sound intended by the composer, score, conductor and musicians over Harbeth speakers is your thing, this forum has been helping with that since 2006. If you just want to share your opinions and photos with others then the unrelated Harbeth Speakers Facebook page may be for you. Either way, welcome to the world of Harbeth!"

Feb. 2018
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New Harbeth P3ESR

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  • P3 is beautiful in any veneer

    The Rosewood finish looks stunning, I say so as a proud owner. I think the Cherry finish looks very nice too, though. It's a tough choice!


    • Well then ... my jaw dropped at C7ES2

      Got the C7es2 today, had a little play in my den, I have Proac D15 at the moment which I think are fantastic speakers, so played a lot of my fav tunes for a few hours and loved every minute of it....flicked through somes songs....then replaced them with the 7's . Jaw dropped. Didn't flick through any songs, they all played from beginning to end

      Originally posted by scottc1968 View Post
      I went down and measured, they are actually 2.2 metres apart so not much in it. Thanks for all of your comments, I pick up some C7ES2 on need to get some cheapish stands.........any ideas?


      • P3ESR - vocals in the room not next door

        I guess you are particularly appreciating the mid-band. Where the ProAc's dip, the Harbeth speakers are flat and this has the effect of placing the vocals right there in the room with you instead of being next door !!!


        • My P3ESR's have arrived-Pics inside

          I received my pair 2 weeks back.

          I will be updating impressions shortly.

          For now enjoy the pictures.



          • Beautiful P3ESR pix!



            • Stands?

              What kind of stands are those? They look great.


              • Soundstyle xs 122

                I'am glad you liked the stands,they are the Soundstyle XS 122's


                • Some More Pics of P3ESR


                  • P3ESR user report ...

                    I listen to them is with my eyes closed,but for the first time I'am enjoying listening to the music rather then analyzing it.

                    The mini monitors themselves bring out this accurate image of every instrument and voice,that every time something move you can tell that it is the mixing that altered the placement.

                    I have been listening mainly to vocal jazz,and mind you Norah Jones's voice just floats out of the rest,I cannot believe the reality aspect of the sound.

                    I had heard about the awesome mids of these {BBC Licensed Design} but this is ridiculous what I'am hearing.

                    The soundtstage is not very huge but enough to make it appear natural.

                    The ultra low freq suffer a bit but then,these speakers were never meant to play house music and there is no problem in reproducing the Cello to the right timbre.

                    The highs are crisp and extremely detailed,didn't expect that with the Grille on.

                    There is no sibilance whatsoever with what I have heard so far.

                    The speakers do play loud at about 10 pm on the Leben.I couldn't ask for more from these beauties at this stage,Shaw delivered as promised.

                    {Moderator's comment: no, these have no connection with BBC design. They are entirely Harbeth UK design}


                    • Laptop source?

                      Very nice! Is the laptop the principal source? What DAC and amplification are you using?


                      • Leben?

                        I think I see a LEBEN amp behind the laptop!


                        • Harbeth P3ESR and Leben - both small but perfectly formed

                          Originally posted by Takis View Post
                          I think I see a LEBEN amp behind the laptop!
                          Yes, that is a Leben hiding in the corner. I use a Leben pre/power with my Harbeth P3ESR and they are both miniature items of superb quality. They're both a bit like expertly tended bonsai treesin that way!


                          • Beautiful cabinet workmanship

                            Harbeths may be simple rectangular boxes, but you've got to hand it to their cabinet makers - the workmanship is just beautiful.


                            • My laptop sources

                              Originally posted by Labarum View Post
                              Very nice! Is the laptop the principal source? What DAC and amplification are you using?
                              Coming from a headphone background,I'am guilty of having Foobar 2000 as my primary source.We somehow stick to laptops when it comes to sources.I've even put my CD player for sale. I know it is not ideal.
                              But the flexibility makes it worth.

                              The Laptop runs into audio-gd Digital Interface which is a USB to SPDIF Converter. That then runs into audio-gd DAC-19 DSP wwith the version 3 software upgrade on the DSP.

                              Which is then connected to ,yes you are right the Leben CS-300X which I purchased NOS not long back.

                              Thanks for appreciating my setup.


                              • More pictures

                                Some more Pictures