Sound is HARMAN’s lifeblood. From the car to the office, the living room to the gym, the stadium to the theater and everywhere in between, HARMAN’s mission is to ensure that people of all ages, of all walks of life, get the most out of every moment they spend listening. Founded by sound pioneers, HARMAN and sound have evolved in symbiosis, shaping and influencing one another over the course of nearly eight decades. At every step of the journey, HARMAN has sought to capture and convey sound at its purest and most authentic through unceasing research and development by generations of talented engineers and visionaries who have made sound quality a veritable science. This science of sound is what makes HARMAN both unique and uniquely capable of creating listening experiences that are truly exceptional.
While the pleasure of listening to music is universal, that enjoyment can be heightened or hindered depending on the quality of the audio equipment used. According to Dr. Sean Olive, Acoustic Research Senior Fellow for HARMAN International, the right equipment allows listeners to hear all the notes of their music by accurately reproducing it with correct spectral balance and dynamic nuances. More and more, listeners are aware of the difference that high-quality equipment makes in their listening experience. The pandemic played a key role in this increased awareness; millions of people turned to music as a source of comfort and connection during lockdown, resulting in greater appreciation and awareness of sound quality. In the post-pandemic world, this newfound hunger for superior sound continues to grow. In a recent Futuresource study on Global Trends and Market Dynamics in audio, 54% of respondents placed audio quality in the top three most important factors when buying an audio product, and 24% said that it was their #1 consideration. The research is unequivocal: people are passionate about audio quality, and recognize it when they hear it.
Profound history in superior sound
HARMAN is perfectly poised to meet today’s quality-focused listeners, thanks to a remarkable ability to meet people right where they are with products and solutions that deliver the immersive listening they seek. Over the course of its long and rich history, HARMAN and its family of audio brands including JBL, Harman Kardon, AKG, Mark Levinson and Revel has set standards in audio quality over and over. To name a few,
- Harman Kardon released the world’s very first stereo receiver in 1958
- JBL sound equipment delivered at the first Woodstock festival in 1969
- George Lucas chose JBL to develop the first THX-licensed theater audio system in 1983
- JBL developed the first professional speaker to use a neodymium magnet in its 1991 Array Series
- HARMAN won its third Grammy in 2014
- In 2020, JBL Professional equipped the SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles, and JBL leveraged the power of proprietary spatial audio algorithms to create the most accurate sound in gaming with its JBL Quantum headsets.
And this year’s CES is no exception: Leading the way is the Tour PRO 2, JBL’s most powerful and feature-rich headphones yet, with audio quality so good that some consider this model to be the best-sounding JBL TWS headphones ever. There are several stunning new additions from the luxury division as well, with the JBL Classic Series components, a respectful update to the golden days of high-end luxury audio separates, including the SA550 Integrated Amplifier, MP350 Classic Media Player, CD350 Classic CD Player, and TT350 Classic Turntable and two recreations of iconic JBL speakers, with the JBL L82 Classic MkII and the JBL L100 Classic MkII as well as the JBL 4329P powered Studio Monitor for the audio pros.
HARMAN’s approach to creating exceptional audio equipment is both rigorous and led by science. With passion and talent, HARMAN’s designers and engineers set ever-bigger, ever-better standards to develop the best-sounding audio equipment on the planet. Nowhere is this approach better illustrated than at the Global Center of Acoustic Excellence in Los Angeles, the place where HARMAN’s elite engineers develop and test the proprietary and patented technologies that determine the current and future innovations of JBL, Harman Kardon, AKG, Revel, Mark Levinson, and more. This merging of experience and expertise lies behind the proprietary and patented technologies that have been bringing the highest quality sound to stages and living rooms, recording studios and movie theaters for more than 75 years. In the words of Sean Olive, “There are literally only a handful of companies on the planet with this level of expertise, and the capability to turn it into real products … today we have the best technology, the best audio quality, stunning design, and a team of passionate audio professionals who bring it all to life.”