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Harbeth Speakers Owners & Discussion Thread


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I'm quite surprised there is no Harbeth owners thread so here it is. I'm looking at buying into the Harbeth family over the next 12 months, maybe sooner. I'm looking at the SHL5P 40th Ann. or the Monitor 40.2 40th Ann. I've heard the SHL5P and loved it but have yet to hear the 40.2's. I've read the SHL5P's have a unique sound compared to other models. Is this true? My idea is to match one of these models to a pair of Earle Weston's Tempest Duo KT120 monoblocks (120w/ch) and a Time Machine pre-amp. Types of music will be R&B, jazz vocals, and some older bands like Pink Floyd, Dire Straits, and such.  Anyone own these models? Room size will be quite large, maybe 10mx7m.

 

Blake.

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As an owner of all Harbeth models over the years, except the P3SRs, my experience is that Harbeths like power, and plenty of it.  I run my 40.1s with MF  750K Superchargers fed by a BAT VK 55 SE valve power amp (55 wpc).  The improvement in dynamics and general authority in the sound is quite noticeable.  If I didn't have the Superchargers I'd go for an SS power amp of at least 250 wpc fed by a valve preamp.  Don't forget that the 40.2s are about only 85/86 dB sensitive and appreciate a bit of welly to get them going.

 

Your room size should be ideal for the 40.2s.  Don't be misled by their seemingly compact dimensions - they put out an awful lot of energy with that 12" woofer, especially when driven properly.  However, your room is probably a little on the large size for SHL5+s.

 

PS: I shall be listing my 40.1s in the near future, with original boxes and the correct Skylan stands.

Edited by Bronal
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  • 2 weeks later...


Ive just recently purchased a pair of SHL5+ in Tiger ebony and absolutely love them, yes they do take about 4-5 weeks to break in, if you listen to them all day.

But wow, the sound stage is amazing and you really can hear the subtle differences in recordings.

My budget couldnt stretch to the 40th annivaersay or the 40.2 so Im running two subs at very low volumes to give it that extra at the bottom end.

 

I to listen to a lot of pink floyd and similar music to you, and took home lots of speakers to demo. 

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  • 3 months later...

Hi,

I became the proud owner of a pair of M40.2 Anniversaries a few weeks ago, and am now a Harbeth convert.

 

I know that they have a reputation for being "warm" but I find that they are simply reproducing the accurate sounds of real instruments and voices. 

I used to play in bands so have a number of CD's that I am playing on and was there from start to finish when they were recorded (including some direct from the master) and it is uncanny listening to these as it takes me back to being in the studio with the band.

 

They have no nasties anywhere in the frequency bands, and everything sounds really enjoyable through them. This is not because they are warming everything up and smoothing over missed detail - it is because, unlike many speakers , they don't have irregularities in their response or crossover effects between drive units.

 

The bass initially sounds warm but has tremendous detail resolution and dynamics  - bass guitars sound stunningly real and full scale, with detail and sustain that I have never heard before, some on tracks I have been listening to for a very long time (40years!)

 

In fact, dynamics something that the M40's excel at - it is very easy to hear when one note (I am not just talking about bass here) has been played louder than the next / preceding note -  I totally get why professional sound engineers use them as studio monitors.

 

They make me want to listen to music and forget about the equipment - I can't rate them highly enough.

 

These shouldn't be compared to other speakers, they should be benchmarked against the live sound of real instruments and voices, which is where they excel.

 

Having heard the M40's I think that the money that the BBC spent of loudspeaker research in the 1970's was money well spent.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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16 hours ago, seadog said:

Congrats ! What’s the rest of your system if I may ask ?

Hi,

the rest of the system is project CD transport, Prima Luna Evo 100 valve DAC, Supratek Cortese preamp, Cymer M160 valve monoblocks (upgraded with KT120's - approx 200wpc), and my analogue front ends are Linn Lp12 / Technics SP10mk2 / Technics SL10 turntables when I can get them set up).

 

cheers

Cameron

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi,

once the Harbeth sound is heard it is difficult to listen to anything else - so replaced the speakers in the living room system (Goldenear Aeon 2's)  with a set of Harbeth C7 ES3's on Extrema stands.

The system is a Pro-ject CD transport, Pro-ject Maia DS amplifier, and will shortly include a Gieseler Kompact DAC (when I set it up)

Had a listen this afternoon for the first time (just streaming some music over Youtube so not really testing them out ) and the same magical accurate musical sound - music becomes the focus rather than the gear - really wrapped - my speaker search is over.

These are speakers for music lovers - you get so involved in the songs -  can't recommend them highly enough.

 

cheers

Cameron

 

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