Ummm?-- no in my opinion they do not have the same qualities-- the Devores are rather "thick" sounding and closed in. They do not deserve the hype frankly.
Go with the Harbeths while not the most analytical of speakers the warmth and honesty of the delivery is captivating.
Unlike the Devores which are bland.
Ah, we all hear differently. Very differently.
I have not had the pleasure to hear speakers by Harbeth, but have read many fine things about them. I own the DeVore Silverbacks and have heard the DeVore 9's, Super 8's, 3XL's, & former 3's. I do not find them thick or closed in at all. Quite the opposite, actually, along with being the most musical and the best value at their respective price points, which includes many, many speaker offerings, but again, not any by Harbeth.
having owned harbeths & listened to devore speakers a few times around, i decided NOT to upgrade my harbeths to the devore.
I find the harbeths more musical in the end... yes, the devore can be a bit bland.
The only area i feel the devores are "better" than the harbeths is in the bass department. Its tight & well controlled.
The harbeths bass is more colorful but the midrange and up is something else.
Either the SHL:5s or the C7s would be good.
Although I owned both Harbeth and Devore speakers (at least for a few months), I'm afraid my experience might be too "apples to oranges" to be of much help. The Harbeths were the Monitor 40s (the big ones), which overwhelmed my room with bass, while the Devores were the much smaller Super 8s, which had to work a bit too hard in the same room. But I do think I learned enough about each speaker to devine the difference you might experience from a closer matchup--say, the SHL-5 against the Nines: the Harbeths offer to-die-for midrange while the Devores are balanced throughout the spectrum. Harbeths seem a bit "bendy" in comparison to, say, Thiel (I had a pair of Theil CS6 on hand when I owned the Harbeths) with a relaxed yet present energy. The Devores seem closer to Audio Physic --warm, but snappy, a more "audiophile" balance than Harbeth, but just as musical IMO.
I don't think "bland" describes the Devore sound at all--I'm sure I could happily ride a pair of Silverbacks into the sunset. And if my room were smaller, maybe the Nines would do too. But if it's midrange magic that really floats your boat, buy the SHL-5s and don't look back.
Just my HO.
I compared the Harbeth 7ES3 to my Super 8s using a 25W push-pull tube amp. With that one, the Devore's are tight, fast, very detailed, and even handed. The Harbeths were somewhat thick and slower in comparison with a fuller, warmer, less detailed sound.
I somehow got the feeling that the Harbeths would need a higher power solid state amp to move them to quicker and tighter spectrum.
"I somehow got the feeling that the Harbeths would need a higher power solid state amp to move them to quicker and tighter spectrum."
As I have followed this thread, Restocks statement has been my very thought. The Harbeth's are generally quite a bit harder to drive than the DeVore's. I own the Nine's, and they are easier to drive than any speaker I have owned. The 25 wpc EL-34 mono's I own drive them w/o breaking a sweat. I suppose if the OP is willing to go w/ a medium power amp for the Harbeth's, than it's fine. As far as what has been said so far, Team 212's statement that the Nines are "Thick" sounding perplexes me. I am no reviewer, but can say with confidence that the Nines are NOT thick sounding. If someone called the Verity Parsifal Encore "Thick sounding,I could see where they were coming from. Not the Nines.They just take on the character of what is front of them.The Nines are certainly the most open sounding speaker which I have owned, save perhaps the Kharma's. Perhaps Team
212 heard the Nines w/ a thick sounding amp.
Hi, I listened to both brands extensively and the Devores were very much the winners.
From the Harbeths, I listened to Monitor 30s and the Compact 7es3...they are both very nice speakers but in the end found them a bit slow, coloured and with a not so precise bass. Very musical however.
From the Devores, I listened to the Super 8s and Nines. The Super 8s were too small for the room and were struggling a bit but the Nines were magnificent. I bought them and love them ever since ...thats 2 years now.
In my opinion, the Devore Nines are in a different class to the Harbeths. The Nines are fast, open, detailed, extended, honest and very musical... similar to live music in a concert hall. It is also hard to believe how smooth and untiring they are to listen to.
Hope this helps.
My situation is this, main system upstairs, Audio note SEP amp w/coincident peII's. Devore would work well there, if I wanted to change. 2nd system is HT system in basement with a big SS amp...Harbeth would work there. I had C7es3, liked them, but the lack of bass was a concern. The musicality is something I can not forget. The devore idea is more a of an upgrade thought, the Harbeth would be a replacement upgrade so when I get "sent to the basement" I like what I hear. I agree with other thoughts about Harbeth's needing SS amps, they need some juice to sound their best. Defstathiou thanks for sharing.
"My situation is this, main system upstairs, Audio note SEP amp w/coincident peII's. Devore would work well there, if I wanted to change. 2nd system is HT system in basement with a big SS amp..."
Ok,let me understand this properly. You want to replace your Coincident Partial Eclipse's in your main system. Your amp to drive the speaker you are seeking would be a SE Audio Note amp. I am surprised you are not considering DeVore or Audio Note, instead of DeVore or Harbeth. The reason is simply because you already have an Audio Note amp that will likely drive either the AN or DeVore speakers.
"With that one, the Devore's are tight, fast, very detailed, and even handed."
I very much agree w/ Restocks comments here on the Super 8.
That is what the Nines sound like to my ears as well.
That's with my 25 wpc Push-pull amp anyway.
I can't speak to the DeVore's, but I think the notion that Harbeth's need to be driven with a high powered solid state amp is not accurate.
I've driven my Harbeth M-40.1's with the following:
1. Plinius SA-102 (class A SS @ 125 WPC)
2. Musical Fidelity Nuvista M3 (integrated SS @ 275 WPC)
3. McIntosh MC275 MKV (75 WPC tube amp)
4. McIntosh MA2275 (75 WPC tube integrated)
The lower powered tubed Mac gear bested the two solid state setups by large margin. Just my experience, YMMV.
Although, they do not have the same sound quality, they are both good speakers. It all comes down to personal preference. I would buy both if I had the choice.
Both are great speaker brands with one having quite a bit more heritage associated than the other - a newbie. My ownership of the C7 and gibbon 3 have more than concluded my taste of these makes. Harbeth house sound shines in the vocals and natural instruments. Devore house sound is a bit more lively, punchy and at times nasal. Take your pick depends on your type of music, source, listening space, electronics etc. In the end I got rid of both of these brands.