Just got my HTD Level III bookshelves...

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Frank_P, Aug 15, 2001.

  1. Frank_P

    Frank_P Auditioning

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    I just received my HTD level III bookshelf speakers today and, out of the box, I must say I am unimpressed. The bass seems decent but the highs are rather harsh and the midrange is muddled. Do these speakers improve greatly after a break-in period or is this as good as it gets? As of right now I am seriously considering sending these back.
     
  2. Due N

    Due N Extra

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    Did you check the review for these at cheaphometheater.com. I think they reviewed the floor standers and gave them high marks. They also compared them to the nOrh 4.0.
    A friend of mine has these. About his best remark was the finish on the speakers. (He's a Vandersteen fan) He ended up keeping them because he said for the price, he can't ask for much. [​IMG]
    You may want to keep them for a few days and allow them to break-in. If they're still not satisfying, you can always send them back.
    Btw, cheaphometheater.com will have a shootout of budget HT speakers. It'll feature the HTD, nOrh, Ascend Acoustics, Swan Divas. You may be interested in that as well. Good luck.
     
  3. Jeffrey Forner

    Jeffrey Forner Screenwriter

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    Frank;
    First of all, I say you should give the speakers a week or so before making a final decision. You have them and you get 30 days before you have to send them back. Why not keep them as long as possible?
    That said, I know how you feel. When I first got my HTD Level III bookshelves, they didn't sound quite "right" to me. I thought the highs were a little muddled and the vocals didn't sound as clear as I had hoped.
    The problem was that the HTDs sounded very different from my previous speakers, a set of Bose Acoustimass 10s. In fact, I had spent a whole decade listening to Bose systems almost exclussively and I had grown used to the type of sound they produced. When the HTDs didn't replicate that sound, I was disappointed and upset. However, after giving them some time, I warmed up to the HTDs. I began to realize that the muddiness I heard initially was just the absence of that harshness I had grown accustomed to with the Bose speakers. Once I heard it again, I couldn't stand it, and I kept the HTDs. I've been very satisfied with them ever since.
    I think sometimes it just takes a while to get used to the way a speaker or a subwoofer sounds. You buy them expecting one thing, when you really get another. At first you're disappointed that you didn't get what you wanted, but then you realize that what you did get is a whole lot better. I think this thread in particular wonderfully illustrates this phenomenon.
    Of course, you may be right. Maybe these aren't the speakers you're looking for. In that case, send the suckers back and get something more suited to your tastes. That's part of the process of buying speakers. The more you listen, the more informed you are, the more informed you are, the more likely you'll make the best decision.
    Happy listening!
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  4. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

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    Excellent advice Jeffrey... [​IMG]
    - Chip
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  5. Greg_Bedard

    Greg_Bedard Agent

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    I second Jeff's comments.
    I have the towers and bookshelfs and I think you'll be happy — after a break-in period. Even though if you had the towers as your mains, I know you would be dam happy.
    The bookshelfs are decent compared to the towers.
    You have 30 days, so just drive the crap out of them. Leave them on playing something while you go to work or something. Or play the constantly when you get home. In two weeks, then give it a listen.
    I know mine have definitely improved since the time I got them.
     
  6. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    i'd give them a few more days, but that's about it. if your first impression is negative, i suspect, no matter how long you keep them, you'll always have that in the back of your head.
    your ears are telling you something. no matter what you read or what anyone else says...your ears should be the final decision. why would you want to stick with something you don't like - regardless of price or reputation?
     
  7. Scott H

    Scott H Supporting Actor

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    My first response was what others have said... Run-in time. While we could argue such relevance with cables and other components, there seems to be little disagreement that speakers require many hours of run-in before sounding as they are intended.
    I would also point out contradicting opinions of their sound (from harsh to muddled) in this this thread... I have never heard them referred to as harsh, and I myself am getting a pair based on the expectation that they (with their silk tweeter) will be accurate if slightly warm, but definitely not harsh nor fatiguing.
    My strong recommendation is put music through them almost non-stop for a few days, then re-evaluate.
    Will you please tell us what reciever (or amp/pre) you are using and what speaker cables? Thanks.
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  8. Frank_P

    Frank_P Auditioning

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    I've been running them almost non-stop since I first tried them and they have definitely started to smooth out. Still, there is something about their sound that I personally don't care for. It's more a matter of personal taste then anything technical. I'm going to leave them running for a couple more days then make my final decision.
    Scott, to answer your questions I am using an Onkyo TX-DS484 receiver and some 14 gauge speaker wire I bought from Home Depot.
     
  9. Greg_Bedard

    Greg_Bedard Agent

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    Sounds like you just might not like the sounds.
    But if your budget allows, I would definitely swap them for the towers. They are really sweet and sound better than the bookshelfs.
    To help break in my HTD Level III bookshelfs that I use for surround, I brought them to the front and drove them for a whole day (I just didn't think they were getting used enough in the back to break-in properly). And I noticed the sound wasn't as full as the towers but it was still decent.
    Again, I would give the towers a try for the free 30-day trial if I was you.
     

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