Does HK stink?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Jeff:L, Jul 12, 2004.

  1. Jeff:L

    Jeff:L Auditioning

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    I bought a refurbished Harman kardon AVR-430 direct from harman kardon. I have had to have it replace once already & the second one I have is not working correctly either. It will turn itself off. I have the connections right & it is in the open, so it should not have heat problems. Is HK unreliable/ Bad quality? I am upset! Should I give them another try, or go with a different brand? What would you guys recommend?
     
  2. JackS

    JackS Supporting Actor

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    Jeff- When they don't work, they all suck. If your choice was HK, give them another chance. Plenty of happy HK owners should give you some confidence that HK can really get it right most of the time.
     
  3. Scott Oliver

    Scott Oliver Screenwriter

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    I will never touch their stuff again.

    Let's see I used to own three pieces:

    HK FL8550 5 disc CD changer $375 - shipped worldwide broken, eventually a chip inside would overheat and burn itself out and you could no longer get it to read any discs, so the tray would just spin around and around until it finally gave up and give you an error. Thankfully this one reared its ugly head under warranty.

    HK Signature 2.0 pre/pro $2500 - Thankfully when I purchased this I added the circuit City extended warranty and after all my problems they just gave me a full cash refund. With this piece of crap in a ten month period I was actaully able to use it for about 5-6 of those months as every unit I tried continued to fail in the exact same way. I had three fail to where they would no longer accept any digital signals, I assume it was the DAC that kept blowing up or something. One of them actually failed after about ten hours of use, great reliability. After the fourth one cam in and they had shipped me the wrong unit, thats when I had to throw my hands up and try to walk away from this piece of garbage.

    HK Signature 2.1 amp $1500 - This is the only piece that was at least reliable over the years to a degree. However when I went from 8 ohm speakers to my current 4 ohm speakers and I decided to hook it up with the new speakers just to see how it sounded even though I had another much better amp to use. Well as soon as I reached those thunderous peaks of 70dB, boom there went one of the amp channels. This amp is rated at being able to provide 150 watts into 4 ohms, yet my very easy to drive speakers had just overloaded it. I have powered my speakers with an 8 watt amp and suffered no clipping on music in the 80-90 dB range, just to prove to you that my speakers are not hungry beasts.

    Then to add to my wonderful HK experience, I discovered during my ownership years that my local HK warranty repair center dropped HK because, one they kept getting so many units to work on, and then HK either wouldn't pay them or delayed the payment and made the process as long as possible.

    Doesn't all that make you wanna go out and buy an HK?[​IMG]

    Of course I have to thank them because these experiences have led me to only buy from small quality high-end operations whose products I have never had an operational problem with and whose owners are a pleasure to chat with.
     
  4. Andy_R

    Andy_R Stunt Coordinator

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    FWIW, I bought a refurbed 430 a short while ago, and so far it is working fine. Time will tell, but at least I can sleep well at night for the next 2 years while it is under warranty.
     
  5. Jeff:L

    Jeff:L Auditioning

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    Well I got 2 bad ones which really leaves a bad taste in my mouth. The HK rep says instead of sending a refund, he would like to send another refurb to try. Thing is that my 30 day refund period os almost over! what should I do? I have read quite a few horror stories about HK on these forums, more so than other makes it seems... I have spent a lot of time & $ on this whole HK fiasco, I just dont want to get stuck with a dud...

    Which receivers are in the same league (price & performance) as HK? Of course, I love the HK styling...
     
  6. ColinM

    ColinM Cinematographer

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    My AVR110 = 3.8 years old, used every day, never a problem.

    DVD 5z from Harman Ebay, 1 year, no problems.

    Buddy's AVR-125z blew 4.2 days after install. 3 days in the shop, and nearly a year later all is well.

    66% satisfaction.
     
  7. Robert Hoffman

    Robert Hoffman Stunt Coordinator

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    I've only ever bought one HK item, an AVR-230. 7 months after purchase it still works fine.
     
  8. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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    HK sounds great but its QC has always sucked. If only they would fix their QC issues they could stand up against the best receivers.

    My two cents.
     
  9. JackS

    JackS Supporting Actor

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    Scott- I also have the 8550 changer. This is the only HK product I've owned since the 2 channel days. This player is stayed in the pause mode for five years now with the power only turned off during extended vacations. This player did have a terrible rep but is also proof that HK's can work and stay active for very long periods of time. Instead of buyer beware ,maybe a better comment might be buyer be "aware". This is not a reccomendation for HK. There is a slight risk whith any brand and with HK ,it might even be a little higher. Your choice.
     
  10. Nigel Hooper

    Nigel Hooper Stunt Coordinator

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    I hate to put any manufacturer down but it seems like since about 2000 their QC has gone all to hell. I've had 4 of their receivers since then and all have passed away long before their time. I'll not be buying one again.
     
  11. Scott Oliver

    Scott Oliver Screenwriter

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    Jack, I know they fixed the problem on the 8550 after about 6 months or so they had so many complaints and repairs on their hand that they soon fixed the problem on the player and issued a repair procedure to all the repair stations with a press release that was basically the equivalent of a product recall. So units produced after a certain serial number were free of the defect.

    I had mine repaired, but had already moved on past the HK level of products and sold it to someone for a 75% loss. I assume the player may work fine even today, never heard back from him, but to me releasing a product with such a huge defect is ridiculous especially at a company that brags about their wonderful research and testing facilities.

    The fact that my Sig 2.0 broke down in the exact same way on three consecutive units also shows another built-in design flaw, and this one is really riduculous considering the price they used to charge for it.

    Haven't looked at AudioReviews.com in quite some time, but it used to be that about one out of every three HK review posted was a problem report. Pewww Weeee, that stinks to me!
     
  12. StephenHa

    StephenHa Second Unit

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    I love my hk stuff, and sold a few things and the only problem we had was with cd players and that was the laser mechanism that was sourced from sony. Keep in mid when buying refurbed stuff that it has broken once in someone elses house, it could have been abused or hit by lightning you don't know
     
  13. Wayne Ernst

    Wayne Ernst Cinematographer

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    Well, when new, they do stink a little bit when the chemicals are burning off the chips.



    Sorry ... I couldn't resist. [​IMG]
     
  14. BurtS

    BurtS Stunt Coordinator

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    I had mines go to repair twice and sent me another new refurb and all of them were bad and still is bad. Turns off after some seconds
     
  15. wes18

    wes18 Agent

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    Co-worker went the refurb route directly from HK. First one was DOA. Second one was DOA. Asked for, and received, a refund.
     
  16. Kincade

    Kincade Second Unit

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    I've had 1 AVR525, 1 year, never a problem; now using an AVR7200, never a problem either.

    Brother has an avr525, no problems in 1 year.

    Father has an avr325, never a problem.

    EVERY kind of mass assembled part will have defects. My buddy has been through 3 denon 3803's, and is now on a 3805...
     
  17. Sen

    Sen Auditioning

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    Went thru two AVR-525 refurbs (from Harmanaudio.com) recently - both played good for 1 day.

    I was not able to power on the first one (even without any connections) and the second one started to give a loud buzzing sound.

    Have asked for a refund.
     
  18. Scott>G

    Scott>G Agent

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    Bought a new AVR 325. I have used everyday for over 1 year. Never one problem.
     
  19. Pus Suchre

    Pus Suchre Stunt Coordinator

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    Well my ex-cat peed on my HK 7200. It stinks pretty bad. When I get it back from the repair shop, hopefully it will stink a little less. And when I plug it in and it heats up (like the space heater it is)- it will no doubt have a "warm" stink about it.

    Other than the cat pee problem- I like HK very much.
     
  20. Jeff:L

    Jeff:L Auditioning

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    I am sending it in for another one. Third time is the charm right? We'll see what happens. By the say, Harman Kardon has one of the most courteous, prompt, and plesant customer service that I have ever dealt with. Lets see what happens. Whish me luck!
     

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