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The Hartge Experience
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Discussion Starter #1
Is it any good? What is the difference between this harmon kardon and standard?

many thanks,

rob
 

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RobHardyUK said:
Is it any good? What is the difference between this harmon kardon and standard?

many thanks,

rob
If you're the type that thinks no stereo from any factory is good enough, then save your $$$

But, if you've been satisfied with other factory stereos, the HK is worth every penny.

I have the HK and love it. I think the Bose is great in my Corvette. The HK is better!
 

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The Hartge Experience
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Hey thanks for that review there! The system looks good, I am not sure what i really want to do! any more opinions? all seem good!
 

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I got mine on Friday and think it's great. It's plenty loud enough. I had to turn the bass down a little but now it's perfect.

Try the Scissor Sisters album on the dealers demo model.
 

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The Hartge Experience
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Hmm, i might ask her if she has a tester model i can hear, i've heard harmon kardon are pretty good, and to be honist, most car stereos now days seem to be much better than yesterdays. Even my vans at work, the new vw ones, have pretty bassy decent setups in them!
 

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Best to do a search on this as you will find loads of discussions on this subject with a
split between the HK is great and the save your money and buy aftermarket camps. I
don't want to be negative about HK but your replies so far are positive and I know from
all the previous discussions opinion is pretty much split 50/50. Any dealer worth their
salt will have a demo with HK in it so take along your fav CD's and listen for yourself.
 

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Good advice... only your own ears will tell you what is right is for you... as Steve said take a CD or 2 with your favorite music and try it in on at your dealer... make sure the treble and base are set at netural or less and then try each of the sound stage modes...
I was chatting with someone with HK in their MINI cooper series out here who was saying that she was going to get a 'real' system as she did not like it... I went and reset her system to somthing that used the right mode ( her system was just as she had taken delivery except she had ramped up the base and trebble to near the top of their adjustment range to 'fix' it and I think it was set to festival) for her music I set it to Electronic and driver centric and she now loves it...

I like it set up with the driver centric sound stages and “ HK MINI, or “Instrumental” modes... depending on the music I am listening to.

see this part of the review I posted the link to above:

Quoted from Bob Womack's
The MINI Harman Kardon Stereo System;
A combined review and tutorial
at http://www.in2guitar.com/minihkreviewpr.html

>>>>>>>>>>>>>
SPACIAL CONSIDERATIONS
Point Source
If you wish to preserve the spacial integrity of the stereo signal, you should use the “H/K MINI”, “Electronic”, and “Instrumental” modes. These modes use the rear speakers as woofers and sub-woofers, and the front systems as full-range drivers. The result is a front stereo soundstage with exceptional left to right imaging and tonal clarity and strong, deep, and clear bass response reinforced from the back. Because bass frequencies are much less directional than mid and high frequencies, from the front seats, the bass is not perceived as coming from the back. Because the MINI interior is fairly small and because mid and high-frequency sounds reflect from hard surfaces, as volume comes up, the mids and highs spread throughout the cabin pretty well. At lower levels, however, the back seat passengers may not hear much mid or high-end sound.

The Point Source programs offer a further spacial enhancement, “Driver”. By employing minute delays and volume adjustments, “Driver” setting optimizes the soundstage for the driver, simulating the sound you would hear when seated centered between the speakers. To my ears, it appears to collapse the sound field a little towards the center a tad. You will have to decide if you like this mode for yourself.

Diffuse Field
If you wish to spread the sound around the cabin and create a “wash” of sound which surrounds you, or if you will be carrying passengers in the back who care about the quality of the sound, select the “Spacial” mode. This mode uses the two rear speaker systems as full-range systems and thus presents to the back and front similar material. Similar, but different, because the frequency response of the two systems is different. “Spacial” mode provides the basic four-speaker car stereo array with enhanced spacial spread added by surfing the tone differences between the front and rear speakers. To demonstrate this, with the car parked, the stereo playing, and you in the driver’s seat, turn your head to the right and look out the passenger window. You should be able to hear the front-to-rear spread. You’ll probably notice a little drop in bass and lower-midrange frequencies in this mode as the rear speakers are used as full-range systems. You can, however, adjust the frequency response of the system with the front-to-rear fader.

“Festival” mode blends delays into the front speakers and sends a reduced front signal plus reverb to the rear speakers to create a “concert hall” type of sound. You can hear the delays when transient sounds are played. During the silence while changing CD tracks you can hear the reverb ring out in the rear speakers. Oh, wow, man.

POINT SOURCE MODES AND TONE
Each of the point source modes offers a slightly different response curve. Of the Point Source Modes, “H/K” provides a smooth and open midrange sound with solid bass and crisp treble which makes it excellent for vocal music and a good starting point in experimenting with EQ curves. It also has a very natural but full bass response with plenty of dynamic range. As you raise the volume, the bass becomes more and more solid. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself adding a little treble. The better the recording, the better it will sound in this mode. Break out the wine and cheese, this mode has “audiophile” written all over it.

On the other hand, “Electronic” mode applies a generous Hollywood Curve, much like switching in a “Loudness” contour. Those who listen at lower levels may find this compensates for the ear’s non-linearity down there. At louder levels, you’ll find thick bass and sharper highs. Do you have any recordings that are weak in the bass and treble? Remember the ‘60s and early ‘70s? If so, were you really there? How about the boxy, electronic ‘80s? “Electronic” can make them sound more alive by bringing out the cymbals, bass, and kick drum. Make it jump off the speakers, man.

“Instrumental” mode seems designed with classical music listeners in mind, with very little “hype” and very flat response as its hallmarks. This lack of hype allows you to jack up the volume to hear low-level passages with little fear that a sudden swell will blow the speakers out of your doors. A recording that is too brittle on the high-end and too boomy in the bass can be mellowed out by this mode. The flat response will also minimize the little irritations classical recording can manifest (hall rumble, string razz from the violins, page turns). This would also reduce the problems in those PBS classical broadcasts. Put on your black tie and enjoy.
Point Source modes with “Driver” feature available:
Name.............Sound....................................Notes
H/K MINI.....Gentle Hollywood Curve.........Rear speakers used as subs
Electronic.......Generous Hollywood Curve....Rear speakers used as subs
Instrumental....Flat response..........................Rear speakers used as subs

Diffuse modes:
Name.............Sound....................................Notes
Spacial...........Gentle Hollywood Curve........EQ and slight delay (?) to rear
Festival..........Gentle Hollywood Curve.........Delays in front and reverb to the rear

>>>>>>>>>>>
 

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The Hartge Experience
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Discussion Starter #9
Hi guys, thanks for the really good advice!!! Does the new cd player, in the 05 spec (mcs in my case) come with a mp3 player?? built in like....?
 

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Yes it does Rob, though some very early build '05s CD Boost head units seem to have come through with the '04 version of the boost radio... you can tell if the boost radio is the new MP3 friendly sort by looking at the volume knob... the new ones have a larger knob.

Thanks to ian (GBMINI) at http://gbmini.net/ for the photo
 

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I know that some people dont like to listen to music at the volume level I do but I wasnt satisfied with my HK setup. Right now the only thing that I have left in the car is the HK amp and front components and tweeters. I changed the head unit to a quality Alpine, replaced the rear 6x9's with Boston Acoustic SL95's, and I added a JL Audio 12W6 powered by a JL Audio 500/1 amp. It just all depends on what taste in music you have and what sound quality you want. Some people like it, and others dont. I didn't.
 

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DRSmini said:
I know that some people dont like to listen to music at the volume level I do but I wasnt satisfied with my HK setup. Right now the only thing that I have left in the car is the HK amp and front components and tweeters. I changed the head unit to a quality Alpine, replaced the rear 6x9's with Boston Acoustic SL95's, and I added a JL Audio 12W6 powered by a JL Audio 500/1 amp. It just all depends on what taste in music you have and what sound quality you want. Some people like it, and others dont. I didn't.
You still have the HK amp but not the head unit? Are you still running the amp? If so, how did you trick it - is there a better way than my way?
 

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The Hartge Experience
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Discussion Starter #13
I just like the way the amber lit headunit matches everything, looks asthically pleasing. But, I have always used Alpine. So dont want to be dissapoited...
 
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