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Nice I'm really enjoying my 40.2's - took awhile to get the placement right in the room but once you get them dialed in they're fantastic.
They seem to play well to all genres of music better than I expected and I really like the way they portray the size and weight of a kick drum or bass guitar amplified or acoustic. Vocals of course are exemplary on this speaker as well.
What amp are you using? I was a bit concerned that my LFD NCSE wouldn't be able to drive them properly but it drives them great.
Harbeth seem to suggest that break in is a myth but I did find that mine opened up a lot after a couple hundred hours and the bottom end in particular changed a lot over the first few weeks.
Fellow 40.2 owner here....surprised you guys having success with moderate power amplification as I did not find the 40.2 could play full range sound on broad spectrum of rock music until I went from integrated pass labs 250 and vac integrated to pass labs monoblocks....now it can play non audiophile modern rock loud and well...I guess every room has different acoustics explaining differences...
Harbeth are one of my favorite speakers (I owned the SuperHL5plus for a while). I’ve heard the 40.2s a couple times and recently got a nice audition of them at a store (in a big room).
Before I put on my tracks they played a track with a female singer accompanied by a muted trumpet (and I think maybe some light drums?). I was taken aback! It was probably THE most 3 dimensional, corporeal imaging I’ve ever heard! The singer seemed way back in the "stage" but fleshed out, properly sized and, well, corporeal and dense. When the trumpet entered off to the side, same thing. This big round, tonally convincing trumpet just appeared. The Harbeths have a way of making many other speaker imaging sound flattened and lightweight.
When I threw on a bunch of my tracks there was more excellent soundstaging/imaging - a really big sound. Though I was finding the bass a little pudgy. (Maybe the big room worked for the big soundstaging, but somehow against the bass control?).
Generally it all had the nice Harbeth richness, roundness and weight, with nice accurate-sounding tonality. Though for whatever reason I wasn’t finding myself totally seduced by what I was hearing. There was a bit of a polite, reserved quality to the sound, where it sort of "sat back behind the speakers" in terms of staging and not being tonally forward.The Thiel 3.7s I owned (and to some degree my 2.7s) gave me a lot of what I heard with the Harbeths in terms of image size/weight (though not as much), but with a bit more energy and toe-tapping quality.
My current Joseph speakers also do a great job with bass-driven music, with a reach-out-and-grab-you bass quality.
Still, the 40.2s are one of those speakers that I want to spend more time with some day. Ultimately they don’t really fit my room aesthetically and practically. But they sure have some special qualities that separate them from the pack (in terms of what interests me sonically).
Sorry for the delay. It took me a while to get the speakers and set them up. Holiday madness delayed things a bit.
Here are some initial observations of mine:
Hooked up the new speakers yesterday.
Unpacking these speakers is a chore, and best done by two people, but I didn’t have anyone around to help when I opened mine, and honestly I prefer to do it myself so I can give 100% focus to it and block out the noise. Moving them is also a chore. I did have a friend help me with this and I’m glad I did. It's nice to have the grunt work done and be able to relax and spend time with them now.
I have Tontraeger stands for them, which are perfect IMO.
At first listen they sounded tight and bright. Really harsh is the only way to say it. Not good.
30 minutes later they began loosening up and sounded much better.
Five hours of listening on them now and they are starting to produce their magic.
Absolutely love them!
They already sound better than the 40.1’s, and that is really something considering how good those speakers sound.
I think they need several more hours of break-in. Some people have said as much as 200 hours. Not sure but I guess I’ll find out.
Just took the grilles off, and can honestly say I think they sound better with them on, but the olive wood finish is just too beautiful to cover up!
Feeding them a steady diet of analog and digital music, ranging from folk to classic rock to classical and loving it all. The best way to describe the sound is that the music just sounds "right." The sound is so natural and easy on the ears that it calms me to just sit here and play them all day, which is what I plan to do today (it's Saturday and there is freezing rain outside - no need or desire to leave the house).
I played the new Mofi UH1S copies of Blood On The Tracks as well as SRV's first album last night. Holy Schitt was that a treat! This morning it's digital versions of Wilco's library that are providing the magic.
The Tontraeger stands are amazing. Expensive but they look and sound great. You can add Blue Tack under the speakers but I never have and they stay put for me. I do not live in earthquake country. I used to live in Japan and had Sound Anchor stands with B&W 805 speakers. I never had the speakers fall off the stands but sometimes noticed they were a bit off kilter, probably caused by minor seismic activity. I added Blue Tack and that solved it.
Yes, as far as I can conclusively say right now.
It's too difficult to say I'll be happy with them forever. Someday I might hear something I like better and switch them out. Maybe the next gen of 40's will outdo these. But it's safe to say I will be hanging onto these for a good while.
I'm very interested in the Tannoy line of speakers, particularly the Westminster and Canterbury models. I once had the pleasure of hearing Westminsters while I lived in Japan and to this day I've never heard anything so transparent and real.
I can see buying a pair of them someday if I ever have the perfect room for them. I can see putting them in a common living area where they don't look out of place. They are so large they really do require the right size room. And they are works of art in themselves. The cabinets are beautifully made. Very intriguing to me.
I'm seriously considering following in your footsteps and upgrading my trusty 40.1's to 40.2 Anniversaries. I'm assuming you still have your 40.2's and still consider them a sizable improvement over the 40.1's? Just want to make sure I'm not simply changing flavors for the sake of change.
@pdreher Yes I still have them and am completely satisfied with them. No plans to change them out anytime soon, if ever. I think you will be happy with the upgrade if you decide to go for it. The improvement over the 40.1's is not small.
@mapman The 40.2's have all new drivers and tweeters, and the crossover has been redone.
@pdreher I promise you won't regret it. I felt the same way as you do now but once I got them I realized what a big upgrade it is. Let me know your thoughts once you've spent some time with them. You should know that the first hour or so of listening is pretty awful. Once they loosen up though, they are magical from the first day and only improve with time.