"This Harbeth User Group (HUG) is the Manufacturer's own managed forum dedicated to natural sound from microphone to ear, achievable by recognising and controlling the numerous confounding variables that exist along the audio chain. The Harbeth designer's objective is to make loudspeakers that contribute little of themselves to the music passing through them.

Identifying system components for their sonic neutrality should logically proceed from the interpretation and analysis of their technical, objective performance. Deviations from a flat frequency response at any point along the signal chain from microphone to ear is likely to give an audible sonic personality to the system at your ear; this includes the significant contribution of the listening room itself. To accurately reproduce the recorded sound as Harbeth speakers are designed to do, you would be best advised to select system components (sources, electronics, cables and so on) that do not color the sound before it reaches the speakers.

For example, the design of and interaction between the hifi amplifier and its speaker load can and will alter the sound balance of what you hear. This may or may not be what you wish to achieve, but any deviation from a flat response is a step away from a truly neutral system. HUG has extensively discussed amplifiers and the methods for seeking the most objectively neutral among a plethora of product choices.

HUG specialises in making complex technical matters simple to understand, getting at the repeatable facts in a post-truth environment where objectivity is increasingly ridiculed. With our heritage of natural sound and pragmatic design, HUG is not the best place to discuss non-Harbeth audio components selected, knowingly or not, to introduce a significantly personalised system sound. 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 offerings there. There is really no on-line substitute for time invested in a dealer's showroom because 'tuning' your system to taste is such a highly personal matter. Our overall objective here is to empower readers to make the factually best procurement decisions in the interests of lifelike music at home.

Please consider carefully how much you should rely upon and be influenced by 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, loudness and room treatment, not necessarily leading to appropriate equipment selection and listening satisfaction for you. Always keep in mind that without basic test equipment, subjective opinions will reign unchallenged. With test equipment, universal facts and truths are exposed.

If some of the science behind faithfully reproducing the sound intended by the composer, score, conductor and musicians over Harbeth speakers is your thing, this forum has been helping with that since 2006. If you just want to share your opinions and photos with others then the unrelated Harbeth Speakers Facebook page may be for you. Either way, welcome to the world of Harbeth!"

Feb. 2018
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The Absolute Sound and Paul Seydor review: M40.2 "Masterpiece" Product of the Year

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  • The Absolute Sound and Paul Seydor review: M40.2 "Masterpiece" Product of the Year

    Good morning HUG!

    I'm thrilled to share that the M40.2 has been awarded a Product of the Year 2016 accolade by The Absolute Sound. Not only that, in the January issue of the magazine is a fantastic review of our flagship written by Paul Seydor.

    Due to copyright reasons we're unable to publish the entire review here however, I thought I'd give you some highlights!

    Paul begins by saying that he - "had a sinking feeling from the moment the speakers were delivered and I started listening, that it was going to be extremely difficult to part with them."

    "The M40.2 is a masterpiece..."

    "Despite the full, deep and powerful bass response, the Monitor 40.2, like other Harbeths, is easier to place for optimal performance in ordinary rooms than almost any other full-range dynamic speakers in my experience."

    "All Harbeths shine on voices, this one such that you feel you're hearing voices the way they really sound in reality."

    "Perceived levels of coloration and distortion are astonishingly low on this speaker..."

    "....this is one of the very few loudspeakers in existence that can without crossing your fingers behind your back be called a true full-range monitor ... a testament to the fanatical care Shaw has lavished upon the crossover."

    "...This is the one reason why so many people who hear this speaker are struck by the beauty of the reproduction."

    "....the Monitor 40.2 possesses that difficult to define but instantly apparent impression of authority ... truthfully, beautifully, and faithfully to the source as the current state of the art will allow."

    Paul concludes by saying that -

    "... my recommendation in the here and now would unhesitatingly be the Monitor 40.2"

    "The Monitor 40.2 is now my reference loudspeaker, and so it shall remain for a long, long time to come..."

    If you'd like to read the review in full a digital version of the magazine is available to purchase on The Absolute Sound website

    A great read!

    Emma Click image for larger versionName:	TAS_269_Cover.jpgViews:	1Size:	72.1 KBID:	69570
    Harbeth Audio Ltd. news section.
    Emma Smith
    Brand Manager
    Harbeth Audio UK

  • #2
    I haven't received my copy yet of The Absolute Sound yet but if Paul Seydor doesn't mention it the room he uses is 22x15x8 feet for anyone who is interested. Great praise indeed for the 40.2 - Paul's references in the past has been Quad electrostatics - he has owned the 63's, 988's and 2805's in the past.

    Happy Xmas everyone,

    Jim Birch
    Melbourne, Australia


    • #3
      Thanks Jim. A very Merry Christmas to you too!
      Emma Smith
      Brand Manager
      Harbeth Audio UK