Top critical review
5 people found this helpful
as they have a great sound for the price
on 15 December 2017
I bought these speakers to replace some H/K Soundstick ii speakers after they were damaged and no longer worked. I specifically went for another set of the same speakers, as they have a great sound for the price. Unfortunately after using them for a couple of weeks without issue, one day the Bluetooth paired with an unknown device, which could be in any of the 100 or so flats in my block.
Harman Kardon decided to install a completely unsecured Bluetooth receiver, that automatically turns on pairing, without a pass-code, the moment the device becomes powered up. I have spent the last 2 weeks listening to notification pings and can hear constant typing, gaming noises and on a few occasions I have even heard people in conversation. The system doesn't prioritise wired sounds over the Bluetooth, it just blends the two inputs, therefore music, video, games have a constant interruption of pings, clicks, beeps and talking has become so invasive. There is no option to turn off the Bluetooth, control its pairing, or even put a pairing pass-code to prevent access by anybody who feels like it.
To add salt to the wound they are not discovered by any of my own Bluetooth enabled devices (even from less then 30 cm away) whether it is my phone, tablet, or iPod. If you intend to use these primarily for your PC I would recommend the wired version, which do not have this seemingly last minute addition and left it with such an obvious design and security flaw. Even changing the volume output of the PC sound card to maximum and the volume of the PC to maximum and turning down the speakers themselves is not enough to block out the unauthorised paired device. It is now so bad that I am in the process of returning them and replacing them with the Soundstick iii without Bluetooth
In trying to find out how to fix this, I discovered that nothing can be done. Because of this, I don't feel I can recommend this specific product, although the sound is great, my experience has been soured by the lack of a simple Bluetooth on/off button, or some security or control.