Review: Harman Kardon Citation 100

Looks Fantastic

This is probably the prettiest speaker we've seen in its class. However, the Harman Kardon Citation 100 fails to take sound advantage of its larger exterior.

Harman Kardon Citation 100

Our verdict

The speaker has a beautiful finish in wool, and looks fantastic. Google voice control makes it speak Norwegian, and the sound is very clear and pleasant.
Does not play as big and powerful as the size gives hope for.
  • Type: Wireless smart speaker
  • Management system: Google Home
  • Wireless: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
  • Connection: –
  • Speaker element: 102 mm bass, 20 mm treble
  • Dimensions: 17.2 x 27.5 x 16.3 cm
  • Colors: Gray or black
  • Other: Two can be connected in stereo
  • Web: harmankardon.com
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Price: £ 199

The cylindrical Harman Kardon Citation 100 is truly a sight, compared to the usual other speakers in this class. Our copy came in gray wool, and is so tasteful that even the wife could imagine having one.

The user experience is the same as with other Google speakers. Which means that it both understands Norwegian, can connect and speak to many products, and that it also has some flaws that allow you to give the exact same command from one day to the next, but suddenly the assistant does not understand you (“Hey , Google, change the color of the ceiling light to red ”). But the assistant has quite just learned Norwegian, we expect this will only get better.

The sound of Citation 100 is good. Partly very good. Acoustic music is played with more weight and bass than with both Google Home, Amazon Echo, Kygo B9 and Libratone Zipp Mini 2. Female vocals have crisp, nice overtones, and the bass appears clearer and deeper than the smaller speakers in the field. It is a bit slim down in the middle tone of deep male voices, but more airy female vocals are clear and nice. News readers are also much clearer than with Google Home.

The problem arises when you pull on a little. You should not play very loud until everything flattens out. The bass is almost gone, and the sound becomes flat and tame. You can connect two in stereo, then it will fill the room better, but you can not do anything with the dynamics.

Conclusion

Harman Kardon Citation 100 is the finest speaker we have come across in its field, with a great wool finish and an appealing shape. The user-friendliness is very good, and the sound is clear and nice. In addition, there is more body in the bass than on the smaller speakers.

When you turn up the volume, however, it loses important bass, and the sound sounds significantly flatter. And it is not very high, no more than it should be able to cope. Thus, it can not replace the stereo system anyway.

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