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With the 40.2, prices are going up again. At one time the Canadian list price was thousands less...is this still true?
While I realize that a twin is impossible, is there a N. American aproximate clone?
Edits: 04/18/17Follow Ups:
As much as I like DIY, you are not going to get close to the Harbeth 40.2 with a DIY speaker. However, if you want to get something similar and spend a fraction of the retail cost of the 40.2, look for a used pair of Spendor SP-100 or the earlier S100. They don't come up all that frequently but when they do the price should be around $2000 to possibly $2500. The later models like the SP-100R and R2 are not the same speaker. I never compared them side by side but there are reports that the original S100 and SP-100 sound better. The earlier models will certainly cost less on the used market just due to age.
You're kidding me right! A DIY speaker can't come up to that level. What magic are you brewing into the hype of those speakers!
I would say let the experts design them and you build them after the bugs are worked out.
A speaker company does and has to make compromises in building and buying parts. A TOTL DIY project doesn't. It uses what is needed.
I'm not sure what your point is. When I said a DIY speaker was not going to come close to a Harbeth, I meant close like a clone, which is what the OP was asking. I did not mean that a DIY speaker could not exceed a commercial speaker in sound quality. My homemade speakers sound better to my ears than the Spendor SP-100 which I happen to own, and more to the point they sound better to my ears than the Harbeth 40.2. But nobody would call them a clone of the Harbeth.
Yes, I did reread that post and realized the OP was trying to actually build a set. And you are correct - that won't turn out well.
I apologize for misreading your reply and getting "snappy". I was incorrect and assumed the wrong thing.
Visit all your local dealers and audition anything and everything that
you think might sound like the Harbeths that's within your budget!
I bet you'll have fun doing it. And, you'll become semi-conversant with
lots of different speakers.
But don't listen to any Avalon speakers. They'll ruin you for any other
Not if you want it to sound like the Harbeth. You could use similar drivers but to get them close to the Harbeth you'd need to use a computer so each driver in its enclosure and with its crossover(s) have the same transfer function) not just the same frequency response of the 3 drivers together. That's complex and needs a good designer with a good computer program and it will probably only get close.
You might try other British BBC type speakers like the Spendor SP100R2 but you may spend as much or more and the sound will still only be in the family but not the same.
Another guess is a cheaper 2 way Harbeth with a Sub woofer that has similar bass response and crossed over low. That may give you the Harbeth mid range and treble for less money.
And finally you could try to find a well cared for used one.
Just to add to your excellent advice, even if the OP could replicate drivers and crossover he would also have to build an enclosure in BBC damped thin wall fashion. Knowing the dimensions and materials used is not sufficient as, for example, the way that the panels are fixed to each other or to a frame also affects the resultant sound. In any case one of the major ingredients in the Harbeth sound is the use of their proprietory " Radial" coned drivers. Not available as OEM or hobbyist items AFAIK.
As I mentioned in a thread on a similar subject recently, he could check the UK price and fly to the UK from USA, buy a pair, given a willing dealer, and return home with them. He would get the VAT refunded on departure and the cost of whole trip plus speakers may possibly still save him money. Trouble is although I know that this has been done with bookshelf sized speakers the Harbeth 40s are big and heavy.
If he ran into trouble though a further consideration is whether or not the local Harbeth distributor would then honour the warranty.
Still it might be worth looking into if the price differential is sufficient. It is after all the same in essence as his thought of buying a pair from Canada (if he were to ship them to USA - I think he may also have a Canadian domicile) but with the possibilty of greater savings.
OP is never going to replicate them "at home".
For one thing the drivers are usually custom ordered. Then getting the time alignment, phase and transfer function correct is sometimes tweaked more to a taste then a perfect chart function.
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