HUG - here for all audio enthusiasts


"This Harbeth User Group (HUG) is the Manufacturer's own managed forum dedicated to natural sound, realisable by controlling the confounding variables between tthe microphone and the listeners' ears.

For example, the design of and interaction between the hifi amplifier and its speaker load can and potentially will alter the sound balance of what you hear. To reproduce the sounds captured by the recording microphones, as Harbeth speakers are designed to do, you would naturally select system components (sources, electronics, cables and so on) that do not color the sound before it reaches the speakers.

Identifying components for their system neutrality should, logically, start with the interpretation and analysis of their technical, objective performance, as any and every deviation from a measurably flat frequency response at any point along the serial chain from microphone to ear is very likely to cause the total system to have an audible sonic personality. That includes the contribution of the listening room itself.

HUG specialises in making complex technical matters simple to understand, aiding the identification of audio components likely to maintain a faithful relationship between the recorded sound and the sound you hear. With our heritage of natural sound, HUG cannot be really be expected to guide in the selection, approval, endorsement or even discussion of equipment that is intend to introduce a significantly personalised sound to the audio signal chain. 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 electronics offered there. There is no on-line substitute for that time investment in a dealer's showroom.

If you desire to intentionally tune your system sound to your personal taste, please consider carefully how much you should rely upon 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, listening loudness and listening room treatment, not necessarily leading to appropriate equipment selection and listening satisfaction for you.

Alternatively, if faithfully reproducing the sound intended by the composer, score, conductor and musicians over your speakers is your audio dream, then understanding something of the issues likely to fulfill that objective is what this forum has been helping with since 2006. Welcome!"

Jan. 2018
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Adjusting Room sound using material damping methods (not DSP)

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Bruce
    The reason I'm asking is I was looking at the Super HL5's but I think the Compact 7-ES2 might be a better choice for my room size and the 40 wpc tube amp I plan on driving them with.

    Anyone have any links or suggested resources discussing room size parameters?
    I had a pair of Compact 7-ES2's a few years ago and sold them when moving to a new house. Big mistake. I ran into a good deal on a pair of M30's and really like them a lot, that's what I'm listening to now in a medium-sized room. But in a smaller room, the 7-ES2's are wonderful, just wonderful. They really are a terrific 'domestic' speaker. I still miss mine.


    • #17
      am looking in to a few amps before jumping on to the wagon. i heard so many good recommendations of pairing harbeth and plinius.

      china made amps are no doubt making a big scene in hi fi world. and not forgetting these are reasonably priced. thus, i wanna make some pairing in order to get the best out of it. need not exactly to be premium price.

      in this country i am staying, prices for hi fi items tend to be little over-priced mainly due to taxes. however, hifi items still we have other options.....

      will post more when i make my selection of amps and harbeth soon.

      thanks everyone for such constructive comments.



      • #18
        Originally posted by tomryan
        I'm thinking of selling my C7s and getting M30s for the 10.5 x 13ft room being used. I'd thought that since the M30 is smaller than the C7 it might work better in a more confined space. Any ideas as to why the M30 would sound bass heavy? The C7s certainly don't.

        By the way, I use an EAR 890 70 wt tube amp and it makes great music with the Harbeths. Prior I had a Plinius SA50MKIII which also worked well but didn't have the scary lifelike presentation. It actually was, though, the best SS amp I've owned and very reasonably priced. Also had an Air Tight ATM2 (80 wt tube) and it was very good. Tried my AMT300 (9wt 300B SET) and it couldn't get the C7s up and running.

        I have owned C7 ES-2's and currently own M30's. Do not be confused by the fact that the M30's are slightly smaller than the C7's. The C7's work much better in smaller rooms, IMHO.


        • #19
          Common errors in room set-up

          What are the biggest (most common) mistakes people make when it comes to setting up a system in a room?

          I suppose some of these mistakes relate to the units placed in the room. Thus many mistakes relating to purchsing decisions.
          Last edited by A.S.; 14-03-2007, 11:17 PM.


          • #20
            I'd say not paying attention to speaker postioning and some basic room treatment. Then when bass is unbalanced and the highs glare etc.....deciding that an amp, cable (or whatever) upgrade is going to be the 'magic bullet'.


            • #21

              Hello Tobes:

              Please tell us how you added that little footer ("System Details") to your post.




              • #22
                If you go into the 'User CP' then 'Edit Signature', you can add some signature line to the end of your posts.
                I used the 'Insert Link' feature to link to my system web page.
                Cheers, Paul


                • #23
                  Thank you


                  Thank you for that. I'll give it a whirl.


                  • #24
                    Hi Everybody,

                    My VU meters of a humble McIntosh MA 6500 (integrated at 120wrms/8ohms) simply won't go further than 20watts/4ohms or 10 watts/8ohms, playing so loud that you can't talk with your friends in the room...

                    So, I have to challenge -very friendly indeed- all the watt maniacs to commend... Alan Shaw perfectly knows why I always insist that power isn't such an issue, I mean in terms of quantity.

                    And, if I'm not an educated engineer or charismatic audiophile to say something really important, even Paul Klipsch himself used to say that 5 good watts will do the job.

                    Shall we get busy with the speakers themselves, or shall we get talking about amps? Nevertheless, Alan made these marvels to sing, not to behave like English old fashioned ladies that didn't find a husband (=amplifier) because all males didn't have "the exactly specified qualities"...



                    • #25
                      Originally posted by Thanos
                      ... because all males didn't have "the exactly specified qualities"...Cheers,
                      As I mentioned in the old Smartgroup, a Watt is a Watt is a Watt is a Watt.

                      100W of power when drawn by a light bulb is so much energy that you can't touch it. 100W of amplifier power is the very same amount of power delivered to the speaker's poor little voice coil. So it gets hot. And as it is glued to the plastic cone, the cone becomes hot.

                      Guess what? A 100W bulb will burn your hand. It will melt the speaker cone. And here are some pictures of just that effect ....

             (enlarge the image at the bottom of the page). Can you see how the voice coil has actually melted then punched its way through the cone?

                      You need far less power than you imagine to make a huge satisfying sound with your Harbeths.

                      {It is said that a prospective customer foolish enough to ask a Rolls Royce dealer about the horse power of a Rolls is politely told "Adequate, Sir".}
                      Alan A. Shaw
                      Designer, owner
                      Harbeth Audio UK


                      • #26
                        Ouch. I heard it from at least one person who i ordinarily trust. I have played the HLP-3 and the Compact-7 on my 50 W SS amp, without any difficulties, but avoided the HL-5 based on that advice.

                        Unfortunately, before I could make up my mind my hearing disease progressed to my inner right ear about 2 months after my operation and I am now 10 dB down comapred to m left ear. So all speaker decisions are again on hold. Maybe, it's fortunate. Maybe I should audition the HL-5 after all (if they have it here).


                        • #27
                          "ease of drive" - the truth, again

                          Originally posted by Frihed89
                          ... at least one person who i ordinarily trust. I have played the HLP-3 and the Compact-7 on my 50 W SS amp, without any difficulties, but avoided the HL-5 based on that advice.
                          This question is fully covered on another thread here.


                          At heart, the M30, C7 and SHL5 have virtually identical sensitivity and electrical load. They are so similar that if, say, the left speaker was, say M30 and the right speaker, say, SHL5 you probably wouldn't notice the difference unless you were listening most carefully.

                          So that puts the lie to the business of 'difficult to drive' in my book.
                          Alan A. Shaw
                          Designer, owner
                          Harbeth Audio UK


                          • #28
                            Speaker placement

                            I've always been of the school that believes that speaker placement is a pretty rough and ready process. Put the speakers where you think they should be in accordance with the manufacturer's specifications; move them around a bit while listening; and then leave them. Well, I came across a discussion on AudioAsylum the other day in which one poster gives a very specific set of directions for coupling the 'speakers to your room. Being very prone to work avoidance at the moment, I thought, "why not?" (Despite the fact that I have granite stands, which weigh a ton!) The difference has been quite amazing. Whereas I thought the HLP3s were wonderful before, they are now absolutely stunning. Bass, sound stage, musicality, involvement have all improved substantially. The web address is below. Try it, as they say, I'm sure you'll like it.





                            • #29
                              A really fatal mistake is to place the speakers so they have bass dips and then try to fill in the dips with eq. Sucks massive amount of power from the amplification.


                              • #30
                                Close to wall

                                My listening space is very limited, its one end of L shape living room, size 2.8m X 3.2m. The problem is I cant place the speaker well into room, only about 20-30cm.
                                Currently I'm using HLP3ES, but considering upgrade to Compact 7.

                                Would that plcement work for Compact 7?