If you are looking for a high-end sound system to equip your living room, Harman Kardon’s Citation Soundbar will help you. The soundbar boasts crystal clear audio technology, giving you the entertainment experience you need to enjoy movies, music, and more.
Although the soundbar is medium-sized, it does a great job of filling up a room and delivers excellent sound and clarity. Recently, Hooke Audio has been allowed to give the Harman Kardon Citation Soundbar review. Let’s explore it now.
Pros & Cons
- Amazing sound quality
- Google Assistant built-in
- Multi-room capability
- Attractive and well-made
- Audio is not object-based.
- No separate subwoofer
- These lacks can make it expensive.
Harman Kardon Citation Bar, a 3.1-channel soundbar that forms part of their collection of Citation sound products, is available. The bar is stylish and modern, thanks to its lifestyle-friendly design. It also features built-in Google Assistant voice control, which allows it to double up as an intelligent speaker.
The Citation Bar is a single unit with a subwoofer and an attractive full-colour LCD touchscreen.
Although it has many great features, the soundbar costs PS899, which is relatively high considering that it does not support object-based audio such as Dolby Atmos and doesn’t have a separate subwoofer.
The Polk Command Bar is a better-specified competitor at this price, but the optional Citation sub offers a higher level of sound quality.
Harman Kardon Citation Soundbar Review
- Measurements: 1150x64x115mm / Weight: 4.1kg
- Finishes available in grey or black
The Harman Kardon Citation Bar features a sophisticated design that emphasizes a wool blend fabric covering the soundbar’s front, top, and rear. It is available in black or grey and is both fire-resistant and dirt-repellant. The overall appearance is elegant and will blend seamlessly into modern living space.
Metal end-plates give the product a premium feel and are of excellent quality. It’s the full-color LCD touchscreen, which draws attention (even though it isn’t visible from the ground – but that’s okay). You can select features, control playback, or choose outputs, and it even displays album art, if available.
- 3.1-channel configuration
- Decodes: Dolby Digital and DTS
- Google Assistant built-in
Harman Kardon Citation Bar features a three-channel layout with a 20mm tweeter and two 100x50mm racetrack woofers per speaker. The three speakers have 150W of the amplifier, which gives them a good amount of power. The great sound bar provides excellent stereo separation while the dedicated centre speaker allows for clear conversation.
This 3.1-channel layout does not support object-based audio formats such as DTS:X and Dolby Atmos. However, the Citation Bar can handle both Dolby and DTS multichannel audio. Harman chose not to use psychoacoustic to create immersive audio illusions by omitting upward-firing drivers.
The Citation Bar cannot reach sub-sonic depths due to the lack of a separate Subwoofer. However, the optional wireless Citation Sub can be purchased for PS699. Harman also sells the Citation Surround wireless speakers for PS399. However, a basic 5.1-channel system will run you nearly PS2,000.
Google Assistant is the main feature of this soundbar, which transforms it into a fully functioning smart speaker. You can use Google Assistant to control the soundbar hands-free and enjoy all the benefits of an AI-enhanced intelligent speaker. This means that you can ask Citation Bar questions, play music, organize your day, control smart home devices, and much more.
Connections and Controls
- 3x HDMI input; HDMI out with ARC
- Optic digital audio input; optical analog input
- Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Chromecast
There are three recesses located at the rear of the Harman Kardon Citation Bar that contain a good selection of physical connections. The first recess includes an Ethernet port to make a wired connection.
There is a connector for an included IR repeater and two HDMI inputs in the second recess. At the same time, the last cavity has a third HDMI input and an HDMI output that supports ARC (Audio Return channel).
It is a pleasant change to review a soundbar with a significant number of HDMI inputs. All the HDMI ports have version 2.0 support for 4K/60p and High Dynamic Range (HDR10, Dolby Vision, but not HDR10+), as well as HDCP 2.2 (to ensure 4K broadcast compliance).
The Citation Bar supports both Wi-Fi or Bluetooth wireless connections. You can stream music from a connected Bluetooth device or your local Wi-Fi network via Chromecast.
The LCD touchscreen can control the bar and two buttons below that adjust the volume. Four LEDs are located at the front to indicate the status of Google Assistant. White and slow flashing means Google is listening, white and fast flashing means it’s responding, and amber indicates that the mic is muted.
Harman Kardon includes a remote control that is intuitively designed and available in black or grey to match the soundbar. The inputs are located at the top. They have the volume up/down and mute. At the bottom, playback controls surround sound, night, and buttons to adjust the bass and audio sync.
It is straightforward to set up the Harman Kardon Citation Bar. You have to download the Google Home App (iOS/Android) and follow the instructions. In no time, you’ll be able to set up the wireless connection and have Google Assistant talking to your phone.
It’s then a matter of connecting any physical source via HDMI, optical digital, or 3.5mm analog inputs and pairing any Bluetooth devices. Connect the Citation Bar via HDMI-ARC to your TV using the Harman Kardon high-speed HDMI cable.
I connected several devices to the soundbar using the HDMI inputs to test. These included a Panasonic DM-UB820 UHD DVD player, an Apple TV 4K set-top box, and a Humax VF-5000T set-top box.
I also tried HDMI-ARC (Audio Return Channel) capabilities by sending audio via the LG 65C9’s built-in tuner and video streaming apps back from the soundbar. I used Bluetooth to pair an iPhone X with my Wi-Fi network and stream music via Chromecast.
When you connect to Google Assistant via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi, either talk directly to the soundbar by using the normal wake-up commands like OK, Google, and Hey Google, or press the designated button on your remote.
If you connect via AUX or optical digital input, Google Assistant will not activate. Instead, four amber dots will appear on the soundbar’s front. To speak to Google Assistant in this case, you will need to press the designated button.
To listen to music via Google Chromecast, you will need to open a Chromecast-enabled app on your smartphone, press the Chromecast icon, and then select Citation Bar. You can then press the play button in the app to get started.
Chromecast allows you to access over 300 music services as well as high-resolution streaming music. Chromecast can play music from multiple speakers in different rooms by creating groups with Google Home.
Six sound modes are available. You can also adjust the brightness of your LCD. Finally, once connected to your Wi-Fi network, the bar will automatically update the firmware whenever a new version is available. You can also restore factory settings and view system information, such as the current firmware version.
The Karman Kardon Citation Bar, a three-channel unit with a separate subwoofer, is a great choice. The soundbar has a stylish look, and the audio is sophisticated. It sounds great with music.
Listen To Music
The Citation Bar offers impressive stereo separation with stereo imaging. This delivers stereo soundstages that are large and clear and precise placement of instruments. Thanks to well-specified speakers with plenty of amplifiers, the result is genuinely musical.
The mid-range sounds beautifully rendered. Vocals are clear and crisp. Higher frequencies sound sharp but not harsh. It is clear and detailed, making it easy to listen to all types of music.
This soundbar has one downside: it doesn’t have a dedicated subwoofer. This limits the soundbar’s ability to produce a wide range of frequencies. If you prefer heavy music, this soundbar might not be for you. The Citation Bar is an excellent addition to a multi-room audio system of music.
Watching Movies And TV Shows
The Citation Bar works well for most TV programs. It makes full use of all three front channels to create a large soundstage. It makes use of its musicality and width to reproduce background music effectively. It also includes its center channel with skill. This ensures that dialogue stays clear and on the screen.
This makes shows like news and sports broadcasts, which are less demanding, sound great. The narrators and commentators come across well. The Citation Bar can add depth and clarity to music and maintain clear dialogue. It can also place effects precisely across the room for more complicated mixes like TV dramas or movies.
Harman has six sound modes to improve the overall performance:
- Standard (uses original sounds).
- News (emphasizes dialogue).
- Music (optimizes both two-channel).
- Night (reduces volume using Dolby audio).
- Movies (enhances all channels).
- Night (creates surround effect using the standalone soundbar).
- Virtual Surround mode (creates surround effects with the standalone soundbar).
The Standard mode is the most effective, keeping the original sound quality, but music can also be helpful. If you have difficulty hearing what others are saying, the News mode can help you hear better. The Night mode will not disturb other people in the house.
Virtual Surround and Movies modes don’t seem to offer much in extras. The Citation Bar’s biggest weakness is its inability to deliver any genuine surrounding presence. Although no soundbar can create surround effects without rear surround speakers, it is still surprising that the Citation Bar does not offer object-based audio support.
A separate subwoofer is not available, which limits the soundbar’s low-end. This is less noticeable with TV and music, but it is evident in movies. Although there is some bass presence, the Citation Bar fails to produce the sub-sonic impact that modern blockbusters demand. Avengers: Endgame is far from epic.
Buy the Harman Kardon Citation Bar If…
A soundbar that is smart and powerful is what you want
Harman Kardon Citation Bar, a smart soundbar with a smart design, is smart to use. Google Home also offers multiroom capabilities.
You want a bar that is both attractive and has a great sound.
This model is high-end and features a striking touch screen, three HDMI inputs, an effective remote control, and a built-in Chromecast. The model also sounds great with its three-channel speaker layout and many grunts.
You shouldn’t buy the Harman Kardon Citation Bar if…
You desire an outstanding bass performance.
The bass is minimal because it does not have a separate subwoofer. The Polk Command Bar is another option. Although it might not be as impressive acoustically, it has superior bass thanks to its separate subwoofer. You can also get Amazon Alexa.
A compact bar is better.
The Sonos Beam, designed for smaller spaces, is priced at PS399 and does not include a sub. However, it sounds fantastic with movies and can stream music.
A complete 5.1 system is what you want.
A complete Citation 5.1-channel system costs nearly PS2000. The Samsung HWQ950T soundbar system is worth looking at, which currently retails for PS1399.
How can I disable Harman Kardon Citation One?
Press and hold the RESET button for 5 seconds on your Citation speaker to restore factory default settings. The factory setting will be completed, and the Citation speaker will turn off automatically.
Is Harman Kardon a developer of an app?
You can stream your music from any room in your house using your smartphone or tablet and Harman Kardon Controller App (available on iOS and Android).
In our opinion, the Harman Kardon Citation can do everything you’d need from a home audio system. Whether you’re watching TV shows or listening to music, the soundbar is sure to please.
If you are looking for a suitable all-around device, pick up the Harman Kardon Citation Soundbar. Hope you enjoyed the review of the Harman Kardon Citation bar. Would you please leave us your comment? We hope you have a wonderful day.