HUG - here for all audio enthusiasts

At its inception ten years ago, the Harbeth User Group's ambition was to create a lasting knowledge archive. Knowledge is based on facts and observations. Knowledge is timeless, independent of the observer and can be replicated. However, we live in new world in which objective facts have become flexible, personal and debatable. HUG operates in that real world, and that has now been reflected in the structure of HUG.

HUG has two approaches to contributor's Posts. If you, like us, have 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 Science of Audio sub-forum area of HUG is your place. The objective methods of comparing audio equipment under controlled conditions has been thoroughly examined here on HUG and elsewhere and can be readily understood by non-experts and tried-out at home without deep technical knowledge.

Alternatively, if you just like chatting about audio and subjectivity rules for you, then the Subjective Soundings area 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. From Oct. 2016, Posts in the Subjective Soundings area will not be spell checked or adjusted for layout clarity. 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.

The Moderators' decision is final in all matters and Harbeth does not necessarily agree with the contents of any member contributions and has no control over external content.

That's it! Enjoy!

{Updated Jan. 2017}
See more
See less


  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #16

    I don't know about other Harbeth users but my wife and I set up an HT system in a family room addition built 4.5 years ago. Used it a few times and both agreed the rear channel speakers had to go. I mean, this is our home...neither of us appreciated stuff blowing up near the patio doorwall behind our heads. We are both much happier with just two fronts, a center, and small subwoofer. I like the Harbeths all alone in a room by themselves for Mozart, Monk, and Miles. Oh yeah, and the real Fleetwood Mac (with Peter Green). For a superb live recording check out Fleetwood Mac "The Boston Tea Party, Part 1" recorded in January of 1970.


    • #17
      Re: Home AV system v. home two-channel

      First let me say that I'm a video watcher and music listener, and not a audiophile or videophile. My primary interest is 65% audio / 35% video ... though I have to admit that recently I found myself building a library of "concert" dvds. I became tired of trying to have a "one system does it all" that really worked for me. I'm not enough of an equipment junkie to deal with so much gear all trying to be tied into one system. I guess as I have gotten older I seem to have less patience in dealing with connectivity problems, etc.

      Since I was going to do some long overdue upgrading (finally got daughter's college and wedding paid off), I decided to separate the audio from the video. I'm going to put together a very good, but very simple new 2 channel audio system from the ground up and leave older equipment in the video system. I started the audio system with my existing Thorens turntable, have purchased an Ayre 7e redbook player on A'gon, and am now strongly considering Harbeth Super 5s for speakers and then will search out a good integrated amp.

      When I'm done there, I'll look to simplify the HT system. It's somewhat ironic that at a time/age when I have more disposable income and can afford more "stuff", I find I have a strong desire to simplify things. I think age often brings a need to simplify one's life.


      • #18
        Re: Harbeth center speaker

        I am absolutely a stereo fan,but I built a HT system for 6 years. last year I replaced my old Avance 960 loudspearks with a harbeth nrg-4 that may be designed for AV systems, Now I am enjoying nrg-4's great sound in both 2 channel or multichannel . though I just watch DVD a few times in a year,but I think a compatible system will be fine , right?


        • #19
          Re: Harbeth - AV centre?

          Originally posted by A.S.
          Commercially, I'm not as convinced as I was a year or two ago that there is a worthwhile market for Harbeth in AV. There is a market, but it appears to us that most Harbeth customers seem to be disinterested in AV and are more than delighted with the pleasure their two channel systems bring them. I for one have an AV system at home; in the last year I have half-watched one film. Am I typicial?
          Alan, I have the pleasure of owning M30 and M40 speakers so I have 2 separate systems. If I am going to watch a film, I take one of my M30's and use it as a center channel speaker with my M40's being the L&R main speakers. It really sounds great having a Harbeth M30 as the center channel speaker, of course in an ideal world I would have three M30's or M40's up front.

          Alan, Is it possible to purchase just one M30 or one M40 speaker?


          • #20

            Hallo everybody. I recently purchased one pair of SHL5 of which - guess - I shortly felt in love. My system is in a small room, surrounded by a bookshelf, of about 3 by 4 meters. Speakers are along the smaller side. On top to music, I enjoy movies a lot and I own more then 300 quad Lps. So I'd like to set up a multichannel system around the SHL5.

            In my view the rear channels are just giving some spatial information and - anyway - I have no option but to place the speakers above the top of the bookshelf which is about 2 meters from the floor. So I would go for a small - not disturbing - 2 ways system. I don't think such application is justifying any Harbeth speakers. The critical point is the front center channel which - as any films lover knows - is reproducing many of the dialogues from the movies.
            So I wonder which center channel is - to anyone experience - giving the same (?)voice quality of my SHL5 ?

            The center speakers in my system can only be just below the LCD panel, where I have available an height limited to 25 cm, a depth of about 40 cm, while the width is more then 1 meter.

            Many thanks, Ciao from Italy,


            • #21
              Harbeth speakers in a 5.1 system ?

              Dear Alan and all,

              This may have been covered before (sorry if it is the case)... but did anyone hear a multichannel system with Harbeth loudspeakers? Does this make sense? I'm asking because I'm equipped with C7s since 1995 with in a good musical system and enjoy a lot of course. On the other side, I also have one of these cheap 5.1 kits for the home cinema around my flat screen TV, which is not very musical I'm afraid (not ideal when a movie has a nice musical track). I'm thinking about upgrading both systems separately (new amp to replace my old valve amp that drives the C7s and a better home cinema kit). Alternatively, would it make sense to try to integrate my C7s in a multichannel sytem? What about adding a central front P3 and two rear P3s, all driven by a good multichannel amp (I hope some are really musical?).

              Thanks for any feedback, Philippe

              PS: great paper on Harbeth and Alan Shaw in Hi-FiNews... I strongly recommend !


              • #22
                Re: Harbeth speakers in a 5.1 system ?

                I have Compacts 7s at the front, and P3-ES2s at the rear and another as the centre channel - it sounds awesome. I did invest in a sub-woofer, but find I hardly ever bother to switch it on, there is just so much clean bass without it.
                Harbeth PR,
                Harbeth UK


                • #23
                  Re: Harbeth speakers in a 5.1 system ?

                  Thanks for sharing this experience of a multichannel system with Harbeth's. Which amp do you use for this?


                  • #24
                    Any AV amp as good as a hifi amp?

                    I have an entry level HT setup that serves our family needs and I do enjoy my SACDs & DVDAs multichannel listening.

                    I like listening to serious music in stereo. I recently used a vintage Pioneer SA 9100 to the speakers (response 20Hz to above audibility) and liked the sound very much with well controlled bass which I do not get via my AV receiver.

                    Can any of you suggest/recommend an AV processor that would be as good as a HIFI amp?



                    • #25
                      AV v. hi-fi amps

                      Having sold Megabuck AV systems in the past, I can say 'no' but it all depends on the budget applied.

                      Hopefully, many thousands of Pounds worth of AV will sound as good as a budget Hi-Fi system but if the budgets are equal, the Hi-Fi in stereo wins hands down. IMHO.

                      If the budget is modest I would always take the stereo route for music reproduction.