Hard to sell my Klipsch Heritage Speakers for a possible Harbeth upgrade.


I have both Chorus 2s and Cornwall with Bob Crite upgrades.  I was contemplating selling my Chorus 2s and decided to hook them up - LFD integrated AMP with phono stage, Crimson Audio cables, Schitt DAC and Thorens TT.  I am amazed how well the Chorus 2's sound.  Long term I plan on selling both the Chorus 2s and Cornwalls to fund a Harbeth purchase.  However, when I hook up these speakers I get cold feet.  Can the Harbeths really sound that good?

I have friends over and they think I am crazy.  And I have to tend to agree.  I cannot find a music genre that doesn't sound good through these speakers. 

As far as what I like better?  Hard to say - some days it is the Cornwalls and others the Chorus 2s.
mindlessminion
so keep them....i have a pair of Cornwalls w Crites tweeters and better crossovers, some damping on the mid and Hf horn throats....they are great garage rockers....


If you like your system change nothing .
Upgrade should be done only if you are not satisfy from something or if you want to get better level of performance.
I heard many cases of ones who change their speakers and regret it and in some cases even bought the same speakers which they sold before.Don't go to unnecessary risky adventures.
If you like those speakers so much why would you change them? What model Harbeth are you looking to get? Harbeth and Klipsch are apples and oranges!
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Yes I know how it goes.  Whenever I get urge to try something different these days I listen to what I have and ask myself why and no good answer. 
@donvito101 looking at the 40.1s.  Been reading reviews and Monitor Audio looks interesting.   However for a used price of 6K+ it makes me wonder.  

@mapman sometimes there is just a itch that requires scratching. 
OP,

Not sure why you would do that at all. I would spend some serious time listening to Harbeth before that decision. The reviews sound great, but you might like the speakers less than the reviews.

If possible buy a used pair at a good price so you can resell without significant loss in case you don't like them.

That is what I did and was very happy with my decision.
Hello OP,
No doubt that these 2 brands will sound different. Is the Harbeth clearly superior? To some yes and to others no. Each will offer particular strengths, and each will have inherent compromises.

What type of sound and music presentation are you truly trying to achieve ? You could very well prefer the Harbeth depending on your objectives and long-term outlook.

The Chorus/Cornwall on the other hand may have certain virtues and attributes that the Harbeth cannot equal or perhaps even come close to.

So the ultimate question is what is it you really want from a speaker ?
Charles
To the OP, try to get a listen to the Harbeths, or any model of similarity. As already mentioned, they are quite different. As a listener, as Charles so elequantly stated, you need to determine what it is YOU want, in a system. I have heard many systems , and I owned quite a bit of everything, and I have determined two things. ( 1 ) I know I am listening to recorded music through my systems, and trying to pretend they are not recordings, is ultimately rediculous. ( 2 ) I have determined I like good horns, as they give me attributes that I like. Detail, dynamics, effortless momentum of the musicianship, good tonal rendition, coherence between drivers, believable imaging and spatial presentation, and ultimately, the ability to recreate musical peaks without the common signs of compression. I also achieve all this with high quality smaller wattage amplifiers, as they always sound better to me than larger similar designs. I own Klipsch, and I am an expert of modifications. I prefer your Cornwalls, and if you dampen the horns, as mentioned by tomic, and further brace the cabinets, you will take them to another level. Btw, the Chorus is not part of the Heritage series, as an fyi. Over at the Klipsch site, you can get a lot of information if you decide to stay with them. However, only your ears will tell you what you want. Not reviewers, not other posters, including me, no one, but you. Trust your ears. Enjoy ! MrD.
d2girls, 
that is a fictitious ‘consensus’. Unless you’re some savant that has tallied every opinion from every thread about all those speakers (and I think the outcome would still be different)...I’m guessing you’ve read a few threads since being here for only a year now and you may *think* that but it is flat out false. I know plenty that would say different. Me included, and I’ve heard all those but Proac... It’s best to stick to opinions and observations from personal experience and let a researcher/reader come to their own consensus instead of telling them what most of us think. 
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@d2girls,
Your intention was lost and came across as an odd blanket statement. I’m certainly not going through all your post but am glad I posted so you could have a chance to explain your ‘joke’. Thanks. 
@mrdecibel thank you.  I will read about dampening the horns on the Cornwall’s.  I currently prefer the chorus 2s over what Klipsch I currently have (Cornwall, Forte, and chorus 2s). 

As to what I like....detail, warmth, and a speaker that can do all genres well.  I have this perception Harbeth might fit the bill.  And if not, Harbeth tend to keep their value and selling shouldn’t be at a huge loss.

Again, I will read about additional Klipsch mods.
If your room will support such a venture, find a pair of klipschorns. This will be your endgame speaker.

Oz



I've bought and sold three sets of Snell Type B's due to sellers remorse. Speakers, especially large ones, are the most difficult of all components to sell (and sometimes replace).
Harbeths depending on model are pretty good mostly in the mids 
they are many other choices justdepending on yourequipment and tastes , way over priced considering they use cheap xoverparts 
I have modded for years on a speaker this expensive at least give upper quality Clarity capacitors and 1% resistors  andgood ahantzen inductors .inthe SE model better wiring and hopefully 
Xover upgrade for well over $1k more . That’s just My opinion .
@analogluvr thank you sir. @mindlessminion, at least you determined which you prefer between the 3 pair of Klipsch. Dampen the horns of the Chorus, if those will be the ones to keep. I have bought and sold so much in my lifetime, I would never tell anyone not to do it. Get the Harbeths. @ozzy62, I certainly miss my Khorns, and, the room I had them in ( long story with that house ). My Lascala pair and a pair of powered subs ( yes, I found a pair that blends well and keeps up with the bass horns ), does a great job of feeding me my audio pleasures, but if I had my druthers, I would be back with the khorns. What I will say, however, and I have said it before : To each his / her own. No one is right or wrong about any of this. It is all personal, and, we all have our opinions. Enjoy ! MrD.
Ah, the Harbeth Kool Aid strikes again. I can’t say I didn’t drink it at one point. It’s hard to ignore the devout following of the Harbeth cult.

Unless you find your Cornwalls and Chorus’ to be "hard" or fatiguing, IMO, the Harbs (somewhat dependent on model) could very well be a step backwards. I AM NOT SAYING THEY ARE BAD SPEAKERS (sorry, one has to tred lightly around the children of the Shaw). I am only saying they’re very different from Klipsch Heritage and not necessarily better in the typical audiophile sense. They definitely won’t yield greater dynamics, and not very likely to be an upgrade in terms of resolution or imaging. I’ve had the Harbeth C7es3s and IME, the cheaper Klipsh Heresy 3s are more resolving and far more dynamic. They also perform the disappearing act a little better. For light jazz, acoustic, small ensemble, and solo vocalist music, Harbeths can be excellent, but they won’t rock your world like a pair of Cornwalls. They also lack the sensitivity that allows Klispch Heritage speakers to remain very dynamic at low volumes. As far as bass impact and depth, you’d definitely have to get the M40.1s to get anywhere close to matching Cornwalls.

IMO, the Klispch models are the more versatile speakers and I happen to be a big fan of BBC-lineage designs.
Regardless, I'd still encourage an audition of the Harbs.

You might find this review interesting:
http://www.stevehuffphoto.com/the-klipsch-cornwall-iii-speaker-review-by-steve-huff/

Obviously a little hyperbole, but he’s had some very nice gear over the years.


I agree with ozzy62. If your looking to up grade get a pair of k horns. I have a pair and my systems has reel to reel,hi res and, vinyl. The k horns had all three extremely well. There is a reason they are the oldest continuously produced speakers in the world!
sell the collection and invest in K horns and a proper room, then work excellent tubes into the equation......my left and right brain opinions merged to provide you this single personality consensus view...
 Based on what you were saying you like, I would also check out Tannoy's 
+1 for checking out the revived Tannoy Legacy models.
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If you care most about speakers presenting the music closer to what is actually recorded, then the Harbeths are the only choice. I’ve had several model of Klipsch and they all pale in comparison to my SHL5 Plus Harbeths. 

Not even close.
Been a Klipsch fan since I bought my first pair of Heresy's back in college in 1978. Fantastic speakers you could drive with just about anything. Kept them until I traded for a pair of Forte's in 1988. Still have those. Also had a great home theater system with Cornwall's as the mains, a Heresy as center and my Forte's as surround. Talk about watching movies and feeling like you were there. Made the walls move. Since then I have moved 4 times and never really had a dedicated space for that kind of set up. Sold everything but my Forte's. Ended up with a small space and bought some fantastic Mirage Nanosat's and a sub. Still longing to get my Forte's back in the game. Finally moved again to a larger home with space and hooked up my Forte's as a 2.1 system with my TV and as a 2 channel music system. Had a nice Harmon Kardon receiver but it seemed no matter what I played or what source I listened to, it just didn't sound right. Brought two of the Nanosat's in and set them on top of the Forte's and I couldn't believe it, but they sounded better than the Forte's. No, they didn't have the bass response and they couldn't match the volume, but damn, they were so clear and clean on the top end. Put the Forte's in the garage and started looking for my new speakers. Ended up buying a used system by Salk Sound. I got 2 Veracity HT3s, an HT2 Center and a 15" subwoofer which is really a highly modified Rythmic Servo sub. The difference is night and day. I have the bass, I have clean and accurate mid range and those Raal ribbon tweeters are just great. Yes, I had to invest in better electronics as well since the Salk's are not very efficient, but to me, it was worth it. 

I said all of this to let you know, until you try something really different, you will never know what you really like. Some like the Klipsch sound. I know I did for a long time. But once I heard the Salk speakers in my home, I was blown away. Find a way to listen to some really different speakers and you will be able to tell what is best for you. I would suggest some KEF's, Focal, Revel and if you can find a place, demo some Salk's. Listen to as many different speakers as you can. You might find something you love or you might find you love your Klipsch's. Good luck to you!!
I like the Cornwalls too.  I've always had a weakness for tube amps and horns.

My horns are in storage now.  Maybe someday I will fix them up and use them, but I currently do not have the space.

I'm using the Harbeth P3esr speakers now, and I think they are great!

Note:  I did not need to drink any Kool-Aid.  I walked into an audio store and listened to them.  I went back a few times and listened to them again with a few of my CDs and records and I ordered a pair.  I listened to a lot of speakers before I bought the Harbeths.  I like the way they sound.  I learned about Alan Shaw and the "cult" of Harbeth after I had the speakers in my home.
Keep one of the Klipsch and sell some other hifi and/or other crap you have gathering dust and buy the Harbeths ....different sound...many of us have several systems and several sets of headphones because we like to have several different sounding systems on hand to fit different moods....
I like the new Heritage line of Klipsch. Not quite my first choice in loudspeakers, but quite good none the less. I almost bought a new pair of La Scalla II's for a second system but couldn't get past the lack of real low bass (anything below 45hz) in such a large cabinet. that said, liked the mids and highs even though the soundstage lacked some depth. Very dynamic too. 
I have not ventured into higher priced speakers until I bought a pair of Harbeth  7ES-3 right here on the Gon maybe 2 yrs ago at the most.   I have had what I thought to be all good sounding speakers except for a pair of Monitor Audio I picked up 7 or 8 years ago.  Maybe a system mismatch but I resold them shortly .  I also had a pair of Fortes and liked them very much.   Had the Crites crossovers as well.   Early Decware radials ,  Pi , and others that I can't recall .  I hesitated on the Harbeths a bit because had been keeping with higher efficiency ratings although a long time player in the electrostatic market --Roger Sanders had been very gracious in communicating with me online re/efficiency ratings and how they can be misleading esp with 4 ohm speakers.  Thats another story.  At any rate,   I just bought  a Modwright LS100 (USAudio mart) and put it in my main system which normally runs a SF Line 1 with upgrades (just the first level--volume control and some caps) .  Granted the Line 1 is not really a tube preamp per se --its a hybrid..  Its a great preamp esp for build quality ,  6922 tube rolling,  great hockey puck aluminum remote,  and  all the functions it provides  and it certainly provides a black background and sounds good  although   I immediately noticed an obvious difference putting the LS 100 with the Harbeths as compared to the Line 1 with the Harbeths..  Immediate improvement across the spectrum..  Detail for days.  I had thought that the Modwright would maybe tone down detail although I think the Harbeths are a master at what they do in that dept.  Im still checking all this out and need to set it up where by I can A/B the Harbeths  with my  Martin Logan Aerius although I think I know already that the Harbeths are much better by just manually changing the cables over  --loss of some detail with the ML's..  But again,, need to A/B and do that as well with the Line 1 vs the Modwright.   This is all taking place so far with a pair of what I think is one of the best deals going in power amps..  The Emotiva XPA 100 Mono's.     I havnt even got to my Pass amp yet to compare.    I had recently moved so my system had lain mute for quite awhile--listening to internet radio for months.   Yikes.   Not so bad though if one can find the station with the music they want.  Obviously not going to get the quality as from a cd or vinyl but  can come very close or even sound almost as good  depending on a number of factors.      I did have to give up my analog tuner set up when I moved out of signal range of some of the best FM available in the country which resides in the bay area.   The internet does have some  lifesaving qualities.  I will though at some point set up my analog tuner with a rotatable unobtanium  APS13 and see what I can dig up on the air.   
If you want a more "Harbeth" sound from your Klipsch get some variety of ALK crossover. They will sound substantially  smoother and richer and you will have control of relative mid and tweet levels. The upper mids and lower treble will never have the finesse of the big Harbeths however. Audio note might bridge the gap, too. 
Don’ sell them.
I have both Klipsch corner horns & Harbeth 30’s- different rooms, in-wall wiring, purchased used (on Audiogon) over the years.
Very different sound.
Love the K-horns for that “in your face” live sound w rock, prefer the Harbeth for jazz, classical guitar, piano, various instrumental.
I wouldn’t give up either.
It’s like flavors- nobody else can tell you chocolate or strawberry is better.
Good luck in your journey!




I ran ALK crossovered Cornwalls for many years in a rotating system. Also had fantastic results with the Decware 6 watt el84 "Taboo" amp. Amps make a difference  with these speakers. ALK difference  night and day. 
I have never used a high quality tube amp with the Cornwalls - I only used a Fisher 400.  I found the bass withe Fisher to be extremely sloppy.  Today I am using a Class A 50 watt amp - Clayton s40.  I might have to find a good quality tube amp.  

Update - I sold my Chorus 2s and now looking for Harbeth - most likely the SHL5+.  I see a pair of Devore Nines currently on Audiogon I am mildly interested in, but I think the Harbeth fan club is greater in number and the Harbeths are easier to flip if I do not like.

I am not using 'fan club' in a deragotory manner, but merely stating Harbeth has a loyal following and that following hasn't seemed to wane over the years.  Typically hype dissipates and people loose interest, but not with Harbeth.  Where there is smoke there must be fire.  Hopefully, I will like too.