HUG - here for all audio enthusiasts

Since its inception ten years ago, the Harbeth User Group's ambition has been to create a lasting knowledge archive. Knowledge is based on facts and observations. Knowledge is timeless. Knowledge is human independent and replicatable. However, we live in new world where thanks to social media, 'facts' have become flexible and personal. HUG operates in that real world.

HUG has two approaches to contributor's Posts. If you have, like us, a scientific mind and are curious about how the ear works, how it can lead us to make the right - and wrong - decisions, and about the technical ins and outs of audio equipment, how it's designed and what choices the designer makes, then the factual area of HUG is for you. The objective methods of comparing audio equipment under controlled conditions has been thoroughly examined here on HUG and elsewhere and can be easily understood and tried with negligible technical knowledge.

Alternatively, if you just like chatting about audio and subjectivity rules for you, then the Subjective Soundings sub-forum is you. If upon examination we think that Posts are better suited to one sub-forum than than the other, they will be redirected during Moderation, which is applied throughout the site.

Questions and Posts about, for example, 'does amplifier A sounds better than amplifier B' or 'which speaker stands or cables are best' are suitable for the Subjective Soundings area.

The Moderators' decision is final in all matters regarding what appears here. That said, very few Posts are rejected. HUG Moderation individually spell and layout checks Posts for clarity but due to the workload, Posts in the Subjective Soundings area, from Oct. 2016 will not be. We regret that but we are unable to accept Posts that present what we consider to be free advertising for products that Harbeth does not make.

That's it! Enjoy!

{Updated Nov. 2016A}
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SHL5 grille - off or on?

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  • SHL5 grille - off or on?

    Hi again,

    i'd like to ask you if Shl5's grill affect the overall sound of speaker and should take off.


    {Moderator's comment: GrillE not grill}

  • #2
    No difference on or off

    no difference..

    more push than pull, i prefer to keep it on as it is so difficult to remove ...


    • #3
      Air flow through port?

      In my experience, the bass seems fuller without the grille. I suspect that the presence or absence of the grille affects the airflow through the port, altering the bass loading.


      • #4
        More open with grille off?

        I feel that my SHL-5 sounds a tad more open & transparent without the grille. Most of the Harbeth users that i know listen to their spks without the grille too.


        • #5
          Grilles on in the tropics?

          A simple test that you can try it yourself then you can conclude.
          As for the grille on the bass sound fuller is, I guess, because of effect of lesser high energy pass thru the cloth?
          I know Harbeth is designed with grille on but in some area like here, Singapore/Malaysia, high humidity do not allow with grille on that trap same moisture that can grow mould or fungus unless the listening room can air conditioned all the time, In addition, color of the wood will remain lighter compared to top/side wood because of exposed to light.
          "Bath with Music"


          • #6
            Grilles off/on same effect as toeing-in

            Leaving the grilles on or off gives me the same effect that I can achieve by toeing in or out the speakers to adjust the brightness. As much as I like to leave the speakers without the grilles to expose the beautiful wood work , a large gecko seen near the speakers made me to leave the grilles on. I do not want it to start a family in the speakers' ports.


            • #7
              Grilles off/on - why bother?

              I've owned my C7ES-3's for two months and I've never removed the grilles. Why? Because I don't want to go through what your contemplating. It would drive me nuts and I don't want to handle the grilles too often, if ever.


              • #8
                M30 - best with grilles on

                On Monitor 30's, the sound becomes a little more 'spot lit' (NOT a good thing in my opinion) with the grilles off. Also, the bass is less damped, more 'woolly'. I like the tighter bass the speaker gives with the grilles on and also like the better homogeneity in the sound that way.

                With the grilles removed, I can more easily discern the contributions of tweeter and woofer separately, also with my eyes closed, but I do hear a little more detail. For me, grilles on gives the best balance.

                {Moderator's comment: which is, of course, exactly how we recommend they are used. We do know a thing or two here you know!}


                • #9
                  Grilles in the tropics?

                  I have tried number of times listening with and without the grilles on my C7ES3, and in the end I still prefer the sound of my Harbeth with grilles off. Like others have said, it gives a tad livelier and transparent sound which is audible. With the grilles on, the staging becomes shut-in and a little too smooth. Maybe it is not suitable to hot tropical weather.


                  • #10
                    Can't hear the difference

                    I can't hear the difference. I just leave them on, they look great that way and it's recommended by Harbeth themselves..