Harbeth C7ES-3 XD review by Tone Publications
Having owned the original and the anniversary version, the current “XD” series is the best yet – at least for most of us. If you’re the person that always likes the original version of something, claiming all subsequent versions to not only be rubbish, but not “the real example,” you might be a little put off by the extra resolution served up by this model. As they say in business school – “you’re not the right customer.”
Comparing these speakers to another British favorite, the Quad ESLs, the Harbeths reproduce so much music perfectly through the midband (a testament to owner Alan Shaw’s loyalty to the BBC ethos and the RADIAL™ driver technology unique to Harbeth) you forget that they don’t have enough resolution to kill flies at 20 paces, and low frequency extension to loosen your dental work. And that’s just fine. Tracking through the Rolling Stones’ “I’m Just Waiting on a Friend” is absolutely lovely. Jagger and Richards’ voices occupy their own personal space, with the background vocals slightly off in the distance, yet Charlie Watts drumming is anchored solidly, and you can follow every note in the bass line precisely. The Brits call this “pace and timing.” This is what will keep you in the listening chair all day – this lifelike quality that the Harbeths present.
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