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Thread: Harbeth at the New York Audio Show

  1. #1
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    Default Harbeth at the New York Audio Show

    I just noticed that Harbeth will be showing in NYC next week. Now, I'm going :)

    I was wondering who from Harbeth will be there. Also, will any HUGgers be attending?

  2. #2
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    Default New York show report April 2012

    Well... got back from the big show. I hope no one else here went there to listen to Harbeths - I really wanted to hear a pair of C7s, to compare to my P3s, but the presentation was pretty terrible. First off, it took a while to find the room - Fidelis was showing another brand in their main room - I had to ask them where the heck the Harbeths were and finally found them. There was a nice man running the room, but this was not going to ever be a good demo for the Harbeths. I learned a bit of audio show etiquette - first ask which gear the host is showing. After a couple of songs, I finally went up to him and started to talk about the C7s - his reply: "Never heard these before, they just lent them to me to play my equipment." To make matters worse, he played some terrible demo music - I came back to the room a bunch of times, hoping for better tracks, but it didn't happen.

    I guess it was kind of funny that the point of his whole demo was this crazy D/A converter that he was showcasing. He kept switching between different filters, blah blah blah - ironic that he's conducting this through a pair of Harbeths, whose designer could care less about things like uber fancy D/A's... Oh well. Overall, the whole show was a bit of a disappointment. I've only been to one other show, back in 2005. It was also in NYC, and it was much better. A lot more vendors, and designers - talking to the designers is the best part, and I couldn't find any here.

    {Moderator's comment: I'm really sorry. We have no direct control over overseas shows. We will immediately refer your comments in the spirit of improving future shows. Thanks for taking the trouble to feed-back.}

  3. #3
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    Default From our side - update on New York April 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by cornelius View Post
    Well... got back from the big show. ... I really wanted to hear a pair of C7s, to compare to my P3s, but ...
    I just finished my Sunday lunch with the family and called Harbeth USA. They were just preparing for another day exhibiting at the New York show. I have some feedback for you.

    • This is the first show by new organisers and there are quite a few rough edges. For example, the opening times are not printed on the catalogue!
    • Many room numbers (incl. ours) have been mis-allocated, and the catalogue listing and the actual rooms are not in agreement. Incorrect door signs have by now been (mostly) corrected.
    • The Harbeth rooms have been far better attend than the exhibitors (and we) expected. Consequently there are periods when rooms become overloaded with visitors and extremely stifling
    • The rooms are of poor acoustic performance, and many exhibitors are doing what they can (without physically interfering with the rooms) to tune an acceptable sound
    • The room sound dramatically alters depending upon the density of visitors in the rooms
    • Harbeth USA is appearing in three rooms, but assisting in the management of six rooms
    • There has been an unexpected (and most welcome) turn-out of Harbeth owners. Several have affirmed their intention to upgrade to C7ES3 from what they've experienced at the show
    • Yes, you are right: once we have loaned speakers to co-exhibitors we have no control over their (unusual) musical choice. The DAC in question is, I'm told 'the hottest DAC on the market' so it must be good .....
    • No public exhibition can do more than hint at a product's potential, and none are a substitute for a proper appraisal in a dealer's listening room designed to make listening enjoyable

    That doesn't help you directly. This may though: Walter at Harbeth USA has told me to say that our New York dealer Sound by Singer would be very pleased to audition the C7ES3 to you in-store at your convenience. It that is not convenient, we will find a way to bring the C7ES3s to you. You just have to advise Walter at Fidelis (Harbeth USA) what is better for you.

    Best wishes
    Alan A. Shaw
    Designer, owner
    Harbeth Audio UK

  4. #4
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    Default Fidelis helpful

    Thanks for the reply, Alan. I'm sure these events are difficult to handle, on many levels. I will say that the people from Fidelis were helpful and very nice. I had the same experience with them over the phone when I was looking for a pair of P3's to buy.

    One thing I didn't mention from my prickly review: I still really enjoyed the C7ES3. I saw Andy at the show but he was pretty busy, so I didn't chat with him about Harbeths. I'll get in touch with him when I'm ready for the move up.

    Thanks again - Neil

  5. #5
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    Default A no in New York

    This is about 2012 New York show, the 2013 New York show was worse! 30.1 I heard were dreamy, but there was no one to talk to other than hostile rep from another line, sounds like a photocopy of last year.

    I'm a serious potential customer, but finding a dealer, asking questions and planning purchases is like shadowboxing. Don't know what the issue is, rave reviews followed by indifference and absence of dealers, maybe Harbeth would prefer to not have North American business, they certainly don't want New York customers.

  6. #6
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    Default Intervention

    Quote Originally Posted by charlesny View Post
    This is about 2012 New York show, the 2013 New York show was worse! 30.1 I heard were dreamy, but there was no one to talk to other than hostile rep from another line, sounds like a photocopy of last year.

    I'm a serious potential customer, but finding a dealer, asking questions and planning purchases is like shadowboxing. Don't know what the issue is, rave reviews followed by indifference and absence of dealers, maybe Harbeth would prefer to not have North American business, they certainly don't want New York customers.
    I am surprised and disappointed. As a matter of fact, NA business is one of the largest components in our network.

    Did you make yourself known to whoever was there? Unfortunately, staff do have to multiplex between rooms (we often lend speakers to other exhibitors) and of course, they need to eat and take comfort breaks. If you would like me to follow this up for you to a satisfactory solution, please do drop me a line privately through HUG here.

    We value all and every customer, and Walter Swanbon of Harbeth USA (Fidelis) is a truly empathetic human. I'm sure that you'd have got along famously.
    Alan A. Shaw
    Designer, owner
    Harbeth Audio UK

  7. #7
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    Default Harbeth availability in New York

    Sir,

    I've not heard from you so I thought I'd take the initiative. I called Walter Swanbon, President of Harbeth USA, and we discussed this situation at length. The bottom line is of an unfortunate coincidence of timings in an arena where a few staff are trying to cover as many tasks as possible in the interests of efficiency. However, Walter's mobile number was known, and he could have been summonsed back to any room in under five minutes from the furthest corners of the show.

    Walter has asked me to convey to you that we do have an excellent dealer in New York, details below, who normally carries the full Harbeth range and is able to make demonstrations by appointment to suit. He has been retailing quality audio for a generation.

    In NY we suggest:

    Andy Singer
    242 West 27th Street
    New York

    Phone: 212 924 8600

    I admit that I have not called Mr. Singer, but his sales record speaks of long-term customer care. I am sure you will be welcomed.

    If you have any further concerns, please do let us know. We are here to help.
    Alan A. Shaw
    Designer, owner
    Harbeth Audio UK

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