Opinions on 19 Speaker Harman Kardon sound system

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Rherman1

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I have a problem with mine HK 19 speaker system as well. I have had it to the dealer and he checked the latest software load was loaded. I have a 2020 Longhorn with what I thought would be a knock out sound system. Boy was I wrong. My 1996 cummins had a better sound. It's just that it doesn't have any bass at all. I have the equalizer bass all the way to the max setting and still don't have enough. The system sounds tinny. Any ideas?
That is how mine was, I changed all my speakers out all 4 doors and the 3 dash, much better sound but it really needs an amp, a good one. I think these are hit and miss with this system.
 

Fredro Starr

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I have a problem with mine HK 19 speaker system as well. I have had it to the dealer and he checked the latest software load was loaded. I have a 2020 Longhorn with what I thought would be a knock out sound system. Boy was I wrong. My 1996 cummins had a better sound. It's just that it doesn't have any bass at all. I have the equalizer bass all the way to the max setting and still don't have enough. The system sounds tinny. Any ideas?

FWIW, the system sounds best when not listening to Sirius/XM because that signal is less than optimal.
 

OC455

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I think the HK system in my Longhorn sounds good. I think mine may have had an over the air update, don't know if that is how it is supposed to work. I know when they did an update with my Big Horn it was over the air and that was the one that messed up the sound quality of a bunch of members trucks here.
 

Hunter7389

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This is wild.

The H/K in my 2020 Rebel is far and away the best I have had, and I was/still am a car stereo lover. I've had Alpine, MB Quart, Focal, Hertz, MTX, etc in multiple cars. This truck is the cleanest, clearest, most balanced system. No harshness, no enhanced boomy bass, plenty of volume. My wife now wants a setup in her jeep :D
 

Rherman1

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This is wild.

The H/K in my 2020 Rebel is far and away the best I have had, and I was/still am a car stereo lover. I've had Alpine, MB Quart, Focal, Hertz, MTX, etc in multiple cars. This truck is the cleanest, clearest, most balanced system. No harshness, no enhanced boomy bass, plenty of volume. My wife now wants a setup in her jeep :D
I have all the stock speakers if you're interested?
 

malzm3

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10 days with my H/K in my 2020 rebel .... I think it sounds great! SiriusXM is not the best quality... need to have something played from your phone.

IMHO my 2011 Outdoorsmans with the Alpine upgrade might have sounded just as good... but it has been over 5 years since hearing that.. I'm biased tho, it was my first and fave truck :)
 

Diesel762

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I just picked up a Laramie with the HK 19 speaker system. It does have a 10" sub with it. It is the best stock system i have run into for a truck.
 

quietpeen

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I just picked up a Laramie with the HK 19 speaker system. It does have a 10" sub with it. It is the best stock system i have run into for a truck.
where is the sub?
 

RHeller

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behind the rear passenger seat.
 

BNeal

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Have had my 2021 Limited for 3-weeks and this system is amazing. Based on the complaints in this thread, they had to have fixed something. The bass thunders and the highs are crisp and clean. I love this HK system!
 

SkeeterBait

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This audio system in my 2020 Power Wagon is KILLER!! I have professional experience with home theater systems, and my humble opinion is that for the small closed environment of an automobile, it's very well designed and placed. The excellent sound deadening of the cab and the noise canceling abilities of the system make it sound very accurate.
 

Patriot_66

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I agree with the positive reviews on the HK system.

I have it in my 2021 RAM 1500 L and have really enjoyed listening to a range of different music over the past week.
Depending on the mood I listen to Country, Rock, Reggae and sometimes some Classical. The highs are very crisp and the bass is tight and more than adequate. For very diverse types of music, the system recreates how the music was meant to be played and enjoyed.
 

Micaelmm

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I guess I fall into the audiophile crowd who is disappointed with the Harmon Kardon. I’ve had my 2020 Laramie Longhorn for about a month and from day 1 I thought the sound was bad, specifically the bass.

Mine is thumpy and muddy, more pounding than musical. In my last Ram with the Alpine (factory sub and amp under the rear seat) the lower register instruments were obvious, a bass guitar sounded like a bass, a bass drum, or upright bass etc were all easily identifiable as to what they were. In my new Ram it’s just thumpy noise, you cannot hear instruments and the bad bass is annoying.

I just drove on a 900 mile trip and ended up using Apple wireless ear pod pro buds for most of it because the sound in the cab was so bad.

I drove my 33 year old son to lunch and had music playing and he asked me why is the bass so bad? Without me bringing it up. He had the same comments, it was better in my last Ram with the Alpine and that this one is more noise and unidentifiable bass with no clarity or tightness.

perhaps I have a lemon? I hated the idea that I may need to change subs and the amp after how expensive this Ram is.
 

Park

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Screenshot_20201231-164132_Chrome.jpg
I'd agree. This is the worst stock system I have ever heard in a truck. Now I am an audio snob (my 18 Ram I just traded in was running an active 3 way system) but I would say the Alpine sounded one million times better than the HK. I hated the fact that the night edition locked you into this system. Thin sounding with very distorted tinny sounding midrange. Imaging of course is non existent. Bass also is anemic and very bloated.

Don't get me wrong; I'm not expecting audio nirvana from a stock system; but I can't believe this one ever left the factory sounding this way. Clearly, the sound designer for Rams audio systems, is deaf.

Ram owners who are hearing terrible sound coming from their HK sound system are correct. Stereo is bad because it needs a software update. This has been an issue since the new generation came out. There's a service bulletin as outlined in this post that will fix the problem. I couldn't copy and paste the URL since it was on a competing forum so I will copy and paste the contents of the fix and give credit to the author Agustinacosta.

"Well here it is. I took the truck to the dealer. As our friend 202snowman did. I mentioned the issue of low volume level and they had no idea what I was talking about, but they called Detroit and the confirm there was an amplifier update which they download (truck spend 10 hours at the dealer) and they performed the update, Believe it or not it improved not just the volume but also sound quality overall. There’s still a lack of bass response compared to my old Laramie but I think it’s because woofer location. So I’m more than happy now. Here is the picture of the paperwork."
 
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Bison41187

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Regarding the amplifier update.

I took my '19 Laramie with the HK to the dealer. After they tried to tell me my balance and fade was messed up and thats what caused my volume issue (total ********), and I told them about the TSB regarding the amp for the second time, they attempted the update on the amp. They tried 3 times and it failed to take the update. Anyone run into this before and/or know what may cause it to fail?

it is a Canadian truck and but I doubt that should have anything to do with the amp being updated.
 

Micaelmm

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I have the 2020 Laramie Longhorn with the Harmen. Previously I had the Alpine in my 2017. The Alpine sounded far better to me and anyone who has ridden in both vehicles comments that the old truck had better sound.

2017 had the factory sub under the read seat. It was a tighter and more musical bass, you could identify bass instruments instead of just thumpy loudness. Compared to the Harmen which is thumpy and not really what I would call musical, all the bass notes sound the same, just louder than the rest even when you dial it down and thumpy without tone.

If you like your sound the way some people listen to rap where the car is doing more vibrating than actually playing musical sound then you'll like it. If you are more accustomed to a bass that has nuances, smooth and musical where the bass notes and instruments have distinctive quality, tone and dynamics then you may not like the bass. The rest of the system is fine.

My wife points out that the bass seems to align better at really loud volumes but can't cut it at lower volumes and falls apart.

I'm told there is a firmware upgrade for the amp but most dealers won't install it because Fiat thinks that is like admitting they did something wrong. I asked my dealership about it and they told me they can only do the firmware upgrade if the amp is failing to work and not simply sounding bad even though lots of people are complaining about it. They suggested I go to a stereo shop in town that has a standing replacement kit for the amp and the sub to fix the problem.

But as others have said, some people can't hear it so they won't know the diference.
 

CrispyBacon

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Quality speakers really sound like crap with low-quality sources.... Spotify vs Amazon Music is huge. Amazon has lossless audio while Spotify is still mp3 quality.

I have the HK speakers and the difference between the two streaming services is night and day. Too bad the Amazon app is so awful to use.
 
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