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Downsizing to P3ESR, LS3/5A or similar?

Discussion in 'audio' started by novak, Jul 26, 2021.

  1. Old Shatterhand

    Old Shatterhand pfm Member

    I have had the SHL5 and the C7XD in the same room (3,155m x 4,49m) and the difference was huge. The M30.2 didn't excite the room modes as much as the C7XD because it rolls off earlier but the SHL5 was way more problematic.
  2. Komarfamily

    Komarfamily pfm Member

    Did you use any sub?
  3. Old Shatterhand

    Old Shatterhand pfm Member

    No, way to small room for a sub.
  4. Dave***t

    Dave***t Revolutionary relativist

    Interesting, that sounds like something I’d enjoy.

    I’m exceedingly sensitive to sibilance (possibly related to tinnitus) so even with gear that most people would think handled it very well - currently a valve amp and Harbeth 30.1 - I sometimes wonder if I could benefit from something a tad smoother still. But clarity still matters, all the same.

    So thanks for posting your thoughts. Shame it’s not easier to get a demo of the Stirlings round here.
  5. Old Shatterhand

    Old Shatterhand pfm Member

    @novak How big/small is your room?
  6. Martyn Miles

    Martyn Miles pfm Member

    I'm sensitive to sibilance in a different way.
    I do speech recording, and find some female voices very sibilant.
    It comes to choosing the correct microphone, and I have various types to choose from.

    Re. Stirling speakers, I do my best to promote his products but getting people to me so as to hear them has been difficult, of course.

  7. EPear

    EPear pfm Member

    the 30.1 are “smoother” or, if you like. less defined at the top than the Stirlings so you may be better off with the Harbeths the way you describe it?
    Dave***t likes this.
  8. Komarfamily

    Komarfamily pfm Member

    So far all the speakera i listened to that was the only reason why im sticking with Harbeths
  9. Ianp

    Ianp pfm Member

    To be fair if we own any of the LS3/5a derivatives we're pretty fortunate people.
  10. yunie_

    yunie_ pfm Member

    For OP.

    the q7 or ls6 is the way to go because of the bass extension it offered.

    If you must have it in ls3/5a size, I've owned Falcon ls3/5a silver and then gold, harbeth p3esr then 40th then XD.

    If you use it in the traditional hifi set up, then Falcon gold is as good as it comes. You can see zero fidelity review of several ls3/5a.

    What makes Falcon gold better than the rest? It has the best sound stage, best bass, and comparable mid range as the rest. Place it on very heavy stands, like falcon's own, and you have something with bass that seems to go to 40hz.

    However, Falcon gold is very transparent. If you listen to less than ideal recordings, then it will make it as bad as it is. Which is why Falcon gold is not as suitable as computer speakers as Falcon silver badge. It makes YouTube sounds like shit
    novak and Panderos like this.
  11. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    This is interesting as other reviews suggest the treble on the Gold Badge LS3/5A is smoother and more resolving than the Silver Badge LS3/5A.
    Panderos likes this.
  12. novak

    novak pfm Member

    I had a similar experience, only from the other direction. Originally a P3 owner, always happy until a move to a larger room got me thinking. I then upgraded to the SHL5+ and compared the two for a while. Yes, the bass and dynamics are better but it was more to do with the transparency and air the 5’s had compared to the P3, which sounded more veiled in comparison.

    From what I’m reading, I’m thinking the Falcon Gold Badge might be the way to go - they sound like they have a bit more insight into the recording perhaps, a bit more energy, and also something different to before.

    Unless, the new Harbeth P3ESR XD is a contender?.. Has anyone tried/compared them?
    Panderos likes this.
  13. ryder

    ryder pfm Member

    It sounds like P3ESR shares a similar resemblance to the Falcon silver as everything sounds good through the Harbeth. Such speakers usually show less clarity and detail as they smoothen the nasties in an attempt to make the sound smoother and more pleasant.
  14. Martyn Miles

    Martyn Miles pfm Member

    As a former P3-ESR owner, I moved on to a very transparent speaker.
    The Stirling V3.
    I won’t go deeply into it, as I’ve talked about it at length.
    Before I sold the Harbeths, I spent a fair amount of time listening to both the
    Harbeths and the Stirlings.

    My findings are included in ‘Stirling Broadcast LS3/5a V3 Review’ on PFM.
    Both speakers have their pros & cons, but it was the transparency of the V3 which won me over.
    The Harbeths are smooth, a little too smooth for my taste.

    I lived with the P3s in preference to some LS3/5as I owned, but when the V3s arrived it didn’t
    take long to realise the V3s were an advance on the Harbeths.
    Panderos and Gervais Cote like this.
  15. Panderos

    Panderos pfm Member

    I agree that the V3 is a wonderfully transparent speaker, having owned for a time; and the Harbeths, in my case the P3ES-2s, may fairly be described as smoother. But this issue arises in the process of recording and sound engineering as well; not just in the matter of playback. I was reading notes on some Baroque music recordings; the critic found the approach to recording refreshing, in that it gave more prominence to the music the composer presumably had in mind, less to the incidental noise associated with playing music. That is to say, a small chamber ensemble, just for example, generates the noise of calloused fingers squeaking on strings, the breath intake of a flautist, or singer. A live recording in a jazz club might add the noise of the audience, the shifting of microphone stands, etc. Some will find this sort of incidental noise adds life and excitement to a recording. Others might prefer the purity of the tones of the instruments as their parts were written by the composer, minimizing the incidental noise as much as possible. With recording styles, as with speaker reproduction, I’m not married to one approach or the other. Depends on mood and music…
  16. Scampy4

    Scampy4 pfm Member

    I'm one of those people who enjoy hearing the incidental noises of the musicians as they play their instruments. It makes me feel more in touch with an actual human being as I sit (mainly) in the dark listening as the music pushes through the air towards me. I even don't mind there odd conductor humming away as he/she conducts.

    I can't abide audience noise at a live recording of a classical concert, though. I definitely don't want to be reminded of other people listening to my music. I don't even liked the applause at the end.

    Sorry to go off topic on what has been an interesting thread.
    Gervais Cote and Panderos like this.
  17. novak

    novak pfm Member

    Hi all, thanks for your input so far... I decided to go ahead with the Falcon LS3/5A Gold Badge. Powered by the Jadis Orchestra Ref SE, Chord Qutest DAC, Lossless streaming.

    I have only had them for a few days. First impressions are good. Very detailed, and a little more lively and open than P3ESR. The latter are warmer with more body.

    Compared to the Harbeths (inc SHL5+), they seem more sensitive to what you feed them, which would chime with what I have read.

    Do they have any burn-in at all?
  18. NEWGUY

    NEWGUY Active Member

    The XT1 is easily the best sounding stand mount speaker I have ever owned, much better than , Revel,Sonus Faber, Harbeth, Focal I have owned. They sound huge and so open and revealing but natural with it.They play quite loud too. They need a sub but I’ve found them very easy to integrate with my ATC sub. They work superb in a small room and no, they don’t need to be 20 ft apart to sound superb! Yes they are expensive but both drivers are made in house with the mid bass unit taking days to produce due to the Sputtered Titanium coating. The Ribbon Tweeter is nothing short of a masterpiece! I have never been more impressed with a speaker before....
  19. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    Every new speaker sounds better after a while IME. Drivers are mechanical things and loosen up a little, capacitors reform electrically after maybe a long time sitting on a shelf etc. No magic.
    Gervais Cote likes this.
  20. Martyn Miles

    Martyn Miles pfm Member

    I doubt capacitors reform.
    Do you know the technicalities of capacitors ?
    The materials and construction?
    Mechanical aspects ( loosening suspension, etc. ) I would agree with.

    One of the problems with comments on capacitors, etc. is the almost complete lack of scientific evidence.
    This is especially so with the so-called cryogenic treatment.
    I worked on cryogenics at Oxford and colleagues were amused by the ‘cryogenically treated
    fuses’ etc.
    I’m not commenting directly to you, Tony, on these subjects.
    Only that you mentioned capacitors re-forming.

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