Stands and science
I wish someone would tackle this subject by measurement - that is, objectively - to reach a definitive position on the light/massive stand issue. Personally, I find it hard to believe that there is sufficient energy at the point of interface between the stand and the speaker cabinet to couple them together such that the stand can make a big difference. So what else could be happening? How about vibration not by the direct coupling to the speaker cabinet but by virtue of the sound wave from the bass/mid drive unit flowing across the surface of the stand (as it does every other object in the room) and setting-off sympathetic vibration in the stand. It's possible - especially so if the stand is tubular and not filled; the same situation as blowing across a wine bottle compared with stuffing it with some absorbent material.
Originally Posted by EricW
To quote what we say in the Basic Facts section:
I have also said that a pile of telephone directories can be used, although cosmetically and from the point of stability are a poor idea.
"7. Harbeth speakers do not need exotic stands
. You can use wooden stands or metal or plastic
stands. We use them all through development and critical listening. Distrust rumours that 'Harbeth's only work with 'xyz stands'. It is entirely your
free choice, what takes your fancy, fits in with your furnishings and budget. If all you have available to get you going is something as basic as the IKEA plant pot stands (even used during the design
of the Compact 7ES3 - see picture) or house bricks or telephone directories. The key point is to raise the tweeter to about ear level.
The Skylan stands are an excellent value-for-money choice that we have used at exhibitions ourselves. Filling stands is your choice".
Suggestion for applying some science, measurement and analysis: does anyone have an old pick-up cartridge that they'd be willing to sacrifice as a point-contact transducer? Then it would be possible to actually listen to the 'sound' of various stands. Of course, it would be essential to ensure that the same contact pressure and alignment was applied to every stand under test i.e. to remove variables associated with the measurement process itself.
Alan A. Shaw
Harbeth Audio UK