Harman Kardon Onyx Studio Review


Introduction


Harman Kardon, it’s a name that both hardcore audiophiles and general consumers are familiar with. Many of us know them simply for their home and car audio equipment, but they have presence in nearly every audio spectrum – including mobile as well. Exclusively sold through Sprint and anticipated to pair nicely with the carrier’s new special edition HTC One (M8) smartphone, the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio is a portable Bluetooth speaker that’s hoping to be something you’ll want to carry around with you when you want to share your tunes when you’re out of the house.

The package contains:


Design

With its disc-like shape, the speaker exudes a modern design, but it’s not as aggressive or stylish.

Being doused in all black isn’t too surprising here, more so considering it’s fashioned after an onyx stone. Unlike the polished look of black onyx, the casing here on the speaker is outfitted with a soft touch matte material – giving it a clean look that’s resilient to being dirtied. Accentuating the entire thing are chrome-like accents treated to the speaker’s legs, and a silver plate in the rear. Flaunting a modernistic design, a disc-like object to be exact, it’s undeniably catchy, but hardly as aggressive or stylish in comparison to stuff we’ve seen lately.

Marketed as a portable Bluetooth speaker, one of our biggest complaints with the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio is its bulky size. Sure, there’s a handle in the rear to indicate its “portability,” however, it’s far from being travel-friendly speaker, weighting 7.7 pounds (3.5 kg)!. Then again, the weighty feel of the speaker lends in cementing its sturdy and solid construction.

Covering the frontis a fabric mesh grill, which so happens to tuck away its 4 speakers and dual passive radiators. Specifically, its 4-speaker configuration breaks down to 2 x 3-inch woofers and 2 ¾-inch tweeters – complemented by those 2 passive radiators. The entire configuration delivers a total of 60 watts of power (4x15W), allowing for up to 95 dB at 1 meter, but we’ll talk more about its quality later on in the review.

Lining the outside trim of the speaker, we have its power button, volume controls, and dedicated Bluetooth buttons. They’re actually flush to the surface, but at least they exhibit some moderate responses when pressed. In the rear, there’s only a microUSB port used to just update its firmware, and its power port. Unfortunately, the Onyx Studio is lacking the additional ports found on other comparable speakers to extend its worth – they include things like an auxiliary jack for a hard wired connection, or a full-sized USB port to charge our devices.



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4 Comments

1. DonkeySauce

Posts: 194; Member since: Dec 03, 2011

Most Sprint store's have been bundling this with another small bluetooth speaker and selling the pair for $250. Absolutely worth if for that price!

2. JEverettnow

Posts: 228; Member since: Mar 11, 2013

The onyx sounds amazing! DonkeySauce is right, the JBL/onyx bundle is an awesome deal!

3. Voslo

Posts: 1; Member since: May 19, 2014

Voslo.com is selling this for just $229 with Free shipping. Oh and they accept Bitcoin :)

4. imasnk

Posts: 1; Member since: Jul 29, 2014

now it's only 100usd at online promo in indonesia, and local shop retailer sell it at 150usd

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