Harman kardon onyx studio 5 review


Harman Kardon speakers are the kind of product that attracts lifetime followers. Many have owned several versions of the same speakers, upgrading as newer models have come out.

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This is especially true of the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5, first available in 2018. With four previous Onyx portable speakers, it has become a classic with thousands of rave Reviews on Amazon and elsewhere.

Already convinced? Buy it here on Amazon.

So, in this Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 Đánh Giá, I’ll try lớn answer just what makes this speaker so special, & if it is the perfect portable Bluetooth speaker you’ve been looking for?



One of the things that makes people fans of the Onyx Studio Công nghệ Bluetooth speakers is the standout thiết kế. While retaining the same disc shape as its predecessor, the Studio 5 has lost the Studio 4’s legs.

This gives it a sleeker, more minimamenu look I love. To hóa trang for its legless thiết kế, a slightly flattened and rubberized bottom makes sure it is still stable. 

An addition, rather than a subtraction, is its all-new swish aluminum carry handle. This may seem an obvious thiết kế feature in a portable Bluetooth không dây speaker, but few others have one. 

The handle makes it a breeze to lớn simply piông chồng up your Onyx Studio 5 & take your music with you with the minimum fuss, something that’s much harder lớn vày with, say, the JBL Xtreme which relies on hooks for portability.

The other kiến thiết feature I love is the elegant black fabric that covers the whole speaker, excluding the handle và rubberized bottom. The only things that break it up on the front are the 5 controls, the one LED and the Harman Kardon logo sản phẩm in the middle. At the baông xã, only the inputs at the bottom are visible.

The slight downside with fabric-covered speakers is they can get grubby. Harman recommends cleaning your speaker with ‘audio or electronic wipes’ which most of us know as screen wipes.

Apart from the aesthetics of the Onyx Studio 5, the other factor that makes people fans is the chất lượng of the components used, inside và out. However, the Onyx Studio 5 isn’t particularly shock-resistant. You don’t need to treat it with kid gloves, but you don’t want to be dropping it too often either.

Truth is, unless you want to lớn take the Onyx Studio 5 on a trekking holiday, it probably won’t bother you. And the same is probably true about the choice of colors, or lack of.

The aluminum handle only comes in, well, aluminum, while the fabric covering does come in three colors: Black, blue or gray. But here’s where I’m confused. If you want the blue option, it costs an extra $50! And if you want the gray option, that’s going khổng lồ set you baông chồng an extra $57.21!

So I figured there has lớn be a difference between them, not just the color of the fabric. I mean, it’s not a large Bluetooth speaker, after all, it’s listed as a portable speaker. And indeed the Onyx 5 is 11.2 x 11.5 x 5 inches. My point is, the amount of fabric needed khổng lồ cover the Studio 5 hardly justifies the extra price.

The other oddity is, why is the gray even more expensive than the blue? One reason may be that according khổng lồ Amazon, the Onyx Studio 5 in blaông xã or blue weighs a tryên 6.6 pounds, but that balloons up lớn 9 pounds for the gray version. That’s some heavy fabric! Or it’s an error, probably the latter.


The Onyx Studio 5 continues its minimalist styling by placing 5 subtle control icons on the front below the handle. They consist of a:

công nghệ Bluetooth không dây (pairing) button.volume down button.power button. This also doubles as a track button. Just press twice lớn play the next trachồng.Volume up button.play/pause/skip button.


Under the control buttons, there’s an LED that alters depending on what’s going on: 

White/blinking: Bluetooth pairing mode is operating.White/slow blinking: Bluetooth is not connected.White/Fast Blinking: wireless dual sound pairing mode is on.White/Constant: Bluetooth/wireless dual sound is connected.Red/Blinking: low battery power. (The only downside is there is no indicator of how low the battery is or how much longer it will last).Red/Constant: battery charging.


At the back at the bottom, there are three inputs:

An AUX input đầu vào. This is a feature that is fast disappearing from many Công nghệ Bluetooth speakers, so it’s nice lớn see it still included on the Studio 5.A Charging port.A service port for firmware updates.

How vày I update the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5?

Rather lượt thích a Tesla, you can update the firmware on your Studio 5. You can vị this via Bluetooth or you can buy a separate cable (I’ve seen them on eBay cheaply).

I believe this only works if you have bought your speaker in the US as of this nhận xét, but here’s how you vị it (it may vary slightly from device to lớn device):

Start button >Settings.Update & Security > Cheông xã for updates.

What does the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 sound like? 


In a word – amazing! I mean, really. For a speaker of this kích thước & price, the sound chất lượng has to lớn be the best I’ve sầu heard. In fact, I’d say the sheer quality of the sound is far greater than many công nghệ Bluetooth không dây speakers costing a great khuyễn mãi giảm giá more.

The Onyx Studio 5 has a massive sầu 120milimet woofer & a 25milimet tweeter (and I’m pretty sure 2 passive sầu radiators, though they don’t mention it in the specs), 50 Watts of total system power, và a frequency response of 50Hz – 20kHz. 

Getting down to lớn specifics the first thing that strikes you is that bass! In technical terms, the frequency response is flat with a bass boost, but that doesn’t really give justice khổng lồ it. The bass is lượt thích a punch to lớn the solar plexus, you can really feel it, particularly around 50-60Hz.

In fact, there is a slight problem you might encounter. If you need to lớn play your music at a civilized level for the neighbors, the bass can dominate at low volumes, muddying the mid and high ranges.

So you either kết thúc up missing some mid/top of the traông chồng or over up playing it too loud & your neighbors end up thumping on your door or floor.

A couple more notes on that bass as it’s such a feature of the Studio 5’s sound. You can’t really control the bass from the unit itself, only from the paired device. However, there are two base modes, high và low.

The default setting from the factory is high. To change to lớn low base mode, hold the Công nghệ Bluetooth button and the minus button at the same time for 10 seconds without playing any music. To return lớn the default high bass setting, repeat the process.

And finally, a warning! Harman doesn’t recommend using the low-frequency mode as the Onyx Studio 5 is not designed lớn use low bass in normal operation.

It is used khổng lồ test the speaker before passing it as ready for sale. Playing on low-frequency mode may cause damage lớn the speaker & will void your warranty.

However, Harman hasn’t simply produced an updated bass-heavy boombox. The mid và high ranges are still crystal clear, especially at higher volumes when the bass boost drops a little. 

And even better news, you can enjoy your music at any volume as there is no appreciable distortion even at full volume.

The only downside in terms of the sound is the lachồng of stereo separation. Even if you connect two Onyx 5 speakers, you still only get mono sound. 

However, there’s really only certain types of music or specific songs where this is going to be noticeable. For most users, the sheer quality of the sound more than compensates.

I mentioned that even at full volume the Studio 5 shows no distortion. So how loud is the Onyx 5? Well, unless you live in Beverly Hills or The Hamptons, it’s going to lớn be all you need to lớn hold a các buổi party in any room in the house. In fact, you’ll probably be able to lớn hear it well enough in every room in the house on full volume.

Tip: If you want to hear the Studio 5 in all its glory, you’ll have sầu lớn have it on mains, not battery power. In order to lớn extkết thúc the battery life, Harman limited the volume when in Bluetooth không dây mode. It’s still excellent for a speaker of its kích cỡ và price, but the difference is noticeable.

How long does the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 battery last?

Like most Bluetooth speakers, the Onyx Studio 5 uses a rechargeable Lithium Polymer battery. This one is rated at 3283 mAh which gives up khổng lồ 8 hours of streaming.

In all honesty, the battery isn’t the Onyx 5’s strongest point. You only get up to 8 hours streaming at half volume. If you crank it up khổng lồ three quarters và beyond, you’re looking at 3-4 hours max. 

This may be the same for many battery-powered Bluetooth không dây speakers, but I expected more from the Studio 5, especially as it takes a whopping 5 hours lớn fully recharge the battery when flat. 

Tip: If you’re not going to be using your Studio 5 for 3 months or more, fully charge the battery before removing it.

Is the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 waterproof?


Apart from the battery, my only real gripe with the Onyx Studio 5 is that it isn’t waterproof. Or even splash-proof. The JBL Extreme, for instance, is waterproof.

Okay, it’s more expensive, but even some cheaper Bluetooth không dây speakers like the Boom 3 are waterproof to lớn IPX7 or even IP67. I mean, how much extra effort would it have sầu taken to make the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 water-resistant? 

If it is crucial khổng lồ you that your công nghệ Bluetooth không dây speaker is waterproof, you should kiểm tra out the Onyx Studio 6, which is waterproof lớn IPX7.

How do I connect my Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5?

The Onyx 5 doesn’t have sầu wireless, only Bluetooth không dây (which, before I get a bunch of comments, I know is a proprietary wireless system in itself). However, as every device worth buying has Bluetooth không dây as standard these days, it’s no big khuyễn mãi giảm giá.

What is great khổng lồ see is that you can also connect a 3.5milimet lead via an auxiliary input đầu vào lớn save sầu that precious battery. This is getting rarer on Công nghệ Bluetooth speakers, so it’s nice to lớn see Harman have sầu retained it on the Studio 5. 

Tip: The Bluetooth connection will always take priority. So if you have a device wirelessly connected & another connected via an auxiliary cable, you’ll need lớn pause the công nghệ Bluetooth không dây connection first.

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A tiny niggle with the công nghệ Bluetooth không dây thiết đặt on the Studio 5 is that there is no NFC pairing like on the SoundLink II. This makes pairing just that much quicker & simpler. Another small oddity is the Studio 5 doesn’t tư vấn any Harman Kardon apps. 

It does, however, have multi-host, that lets you connect two devices to lớn it at the same time and, as already mentioned, daisy-chain, that lets you pair two speakers together.

Tip: Make sure the second speaker you are daisy chaining is another Studio 5. It won’t work with any previous version, or even the lathử nghiệm Studio 6.

How to lớn pair 2 Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5s

If you don’t know how khổng lồ pair your device with any công nghệ Bluetooth không dây speaker, you’ve sầu probably been living in a cave sầu with no signal for the last 5 years or more. The procedure to pair two speakers (dual sound mode) is equally simple:

Pair one speaker with your phone as normal.Hold the Bluetooth button on both speakers for 5 seconds. The LED light will blink trắng quickly.When the white LED stops blinking, you’re in dual sound mode.

Tip: The Onyx Studio 5 will turn itself off after 30 minutes if it doesn’t detect a Công nghệ Bluetooth device to lớn pair with. If it is already paired with a device và the device has an tự động hóa shut off, then it will disconnect from that device 30 minutes after it shuts off, so you’ll need to pair your device again.

Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 vs 4

As you might expect, the Studio 5 is the fifth variant on the Onyx theme. Visually the first four had little to distinguish them, but it seems Harman has been listening khổng lồ their customers’ feedbachồng và the fifth differs from the previous Onyx in a number of important ways.

So what is the difference between the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 & the Studio Onyx 4? 

Well, as mentioned before, the Studio 5 still has the same disc-lượt thích thiết kế, but unlượt thích the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 4, it doesn’t have sầu what, for me, were rather crude legs for stability. Instead, it has a slightly flattened và rubberized base khổng lồ keep it steady. And it works fine.

It’s also a little wider than the 4, but the greatest improvement is that neat aluminum handle. As I’ve said elsewhere in this nhận xét, it’s such an obvious, but clever, addition for a portable Bluetooth không dây speaker. 

In terms of looks, the only other real change has been moving the controls from the top to the front. All these changes are obviously purely cosmetic và alone wouldn’t justify a new Mã Sản Phẩm. However, it’s inside where the Studio 5 really differs from the Studio 4. 

It has the same battery but increased from 3,000mAh to lớn 3,280mAh & it no longer has a built-in microphone.

The big difference, however, is that the Studio 4 had 2 woofers & tweeters, making 4 drivers in total, whereas the Studio 5 has done away with that & now features that single, mega woofer & a tweeter, with both models having two passive radiators (although as said they’re not mentioned in the Studio 5 specs).

And that is the most radical change. The Studio 5 is more bass-driven. I’m not going lớn go on about it again, because I’ve sầu already raved about it, but if there’s any justification for upgrading from your old Studio 4 lớn a Studio 5, then this is it. 

There is one other change, however, that offsets all that bass goodness. The Studio 5 doesn’t tư vấn any Harman apps, including the Connect +. The Studio 4 does, which means you can pair not just another Studio 4, but dozens of other speakers with your Studio 4. And speakers from other manufacturers like JBL. 

Also, if you connected two Onyx Studio 4’s together, you could choose các buổi party or stereo mode, something again, you can’t do when pairing two Studio 5s.

So, should you buy or nâng cấp to the Onyx Studio 5?

If you’re not really into bass-driven music, you want lớn make voice calls and want stereo when you pair two speakers, then I’d stichồng with the Studio 4.

If you are going khổng lồ carry your speaker around and are into any kind of music that would benefit from some seriously heavy bass, then I’d go for the Studio 5.

ModelOnyx Studio 5Onyx Studio 4
Dimensions284milimet x 291mm x 128 mm260milimet x 278mm x 159.5mm
Drivers1 X Woofer/1 X Tweeter2 X Woofer/2 X Tweeter
Battery Size3,283 mAh3,000 mAh
Charging Time5 hours5 hours
Supports Connect+NoYes
Built-in MicrophoneNoYes
Frequency50Hz – 20kHz (-6dB)50Hz – 20kHz (-6dB)
Bluetooth không dây Version4.24.2

Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 vs 6

So what is the difference between the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 & the Studio Onyx 6? Well, a lot less than between the Studio 5 và the Studio 4. 

Cosmetically, the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 6 differs from the Studio 5 in that the standard blaông chồng mã sản phẩm of the Studio 5 only came with an aluminum handle in gray.

The standard version of the Studio 6 comes with a bronze handle, which looks stunning. However, some Studio 6s still seem to lớn have sầu the gray handle, so kiểm tra before buying.

The Studio 6 is a little heavier than the Studio 5, but that is probably down to lớn the one big change Harman has made. Finally, we have a waterproof Onyx! The Studio 6 is rated IPX7, which means you can theoretically submerge it in water a metre deep for 30 minutes.

Tip: Don’t! When CDs first came out they were supposed to lớn be indestructible. I scratched mine with a spoon (yeah, I know!) và when I took it baông chồng lớn the shop, the sales assistant just laughed.

So, if you buy a Studio 6 enjoy the fact that you can use it by the pool, but don’t be tempted to lớn drop it in it.

ModelOnyx Studio 5Onyx Studio 6
Dimensions284mm x 291milimet x 128 mm284milimet x 291milimet x 128 mm
Drivers1 X Woofer/1 X Tweeter1 X Woofer/1 X Tweeter
Water-ResistantNoYes – IPX7
Battery Size3,283 mAh3,283 mAh
Charging Time5 hours5 hours
Frequency50Hz – 20kHz (-6dB)50Hz – 20kHz (-6dB)
Công nghệ Bluetooth Version4.24.2

Is the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 good value?

Absolutely. The Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 price is in the mid-range for portable công nghệ Bluetooth không dây speakers. Given its amazing sound & cool but practical kiến thiết, you get a lot for your money. 

What are the closest rivals khổng lồ the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5?

The nearest rivals to the Onyx Studio 5 in my opinion are its predecessor, the Studio 4, và its successor, the Studio 6, both dealternative text with in this article.

In terms of other brands, JBL Bluetooth speakers are the nearest equivalent for cost và performance. Models lượt thích the Extreme and Boombox tkết thúc khổng lồ have better battery life and IPX7 waterproofing but are more expensive.

Models lượt thích the Charge 4 are nearer the Studio 5’s price, but usually have sầu fewer watts (30 less in the case of the Charge 4) & khổng lồ my mind, don’t have the cool kiến thiết on the Studio 5, but that’s obviously subjective.

So, is Harman Kardon the best Bluetooth Speaker brvà dollar for dollar? Well, Bose và Sony also produce some great Bluetooth không dây speakers in this price bracket, but all in all, you won’t get me lớn part with the Studio 5 for any of them!

Is the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 right for you?

The Studio 5 is a good choice if you are looking for a Bluetooth speaker that is: 

Premium quality.Truly portable. Stylish.Great value for money.

và that has:

Amazingly rich sound.Superb bass.Enough volume to lớn fill a large room with serious tiệc nhỏ sounds.


Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 Specifications

General Specifications

Maximum music playing time: 8 hoursOutput đầu ra power: Watts RMS Bi-amp (AC mode)Transducer Size: Woofer 1 x 120milimet, Tweeter 1 x 25mmFrequency Range: (-10 dB) 50Hz – 20kHz (-6dB)Signal to noise ratio: 80dB A-weighted

Control and Connection Specifications

Công nghệ Bluetooth profiles: A2DPhường 1.3, AVRCPhường 1.6công nghệ Bluetooth không dây frequency: 2402MHz – 2480MHzcông nghệ Bluetooth không dây transmitted modulation: GFSK, π/4 DQPSK, 8DPSKBluetooth không dây transmitter power: 0 – 9dBmCông nghệ Bluetooth version: 4.2công nghệ Bluetooth không dây range: 33 feet


Dimensions (cm): 28.4 x 29.1 x 12.8Dimensions (in): 11.2 x 11.4 x 5Weight (kgs): 2.98Weight (lbs): 6.6


nguồn supply: 19V/2A


Battery type: Lithium-ionBattery capacity: 3283mAhCharging time: 5 hours


Aux in: 3.5 mm audio cable Bluetooth: YesWireless: Yes


Wi-Fi: NoNFC: NoMulti-Host: YesDaisy chain: Yes

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Harman Kardon speakers any good?

Yes, for sure. They have thousands of rave Đánh Giá on Amazon and the fact that Harman has been making the Onyx Studgame ios for years shows their popularity.

Is Harman Kardon the best công nghệ Bluetooth không dây Speaker Brand?

Whether one brvà is better than another is often subjective. Certainly, Harman Kardon products are made with quality components & built to lớn last.

Just go on eBay or any other online marketplace and you’ll find previous Onyxes for sale, still working & still in demand.

Are Harman Kardon speakers better than Bose?

Again, this is subjective. Bose, like Harman Kardon, has been making speakers for some time & has a huge following. Both brands produce a great range of Công nghệ Bluetooth speakers.

Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 vs JBL Xtreme 2: Which is better?

The JBL Xtreme 2 has a longer battery life than the Studio 5, is splash-proof, & has NFC. However, it is more expensive than the Studio 5 (up to 50% more), so they’re not really in the same league.

What is the difference between the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 and Studio Onyx 4?

Basically, the Studio 4 has legs, a built-in microphone và you can pair two speakers in stereo. The Studio 5 has neither legs nor a built-in mike và no stereo capability.

It also has only two drivers, not four. The woofer, however, is much larger, giving it greater bass.

What is the difference between the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 and Studio Onyx 6?

The Studio 6 is waterproof to lớn IPX7, whereas the Studio 5 isn’t. The Studio 6 is also more expensive.

Which Harman Kardon speaker is the best?

It depends on what you are looking for. If you want a balanced sound và lớn make voice calls, the Studio 4 is a good choice.

If you want superb bass-driven sound và a convenient carry handle, then the Studio 5 is best. And if it’s important to lớn you that the speaker is waterproof, then go for the Studio 6.

Is the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5 waterproof?

No. If you want a waterproof portable Bluetooth speaker, you need to lớn buy the Studio 6, which is waterproof lớn IPX7.

How do I know if my Harman Kardon Onyx is fully charged?

The LED will bliên kết red when the battery is low. Once you start charging it, the light will turn lớn a constant red. Unfortunately, there is no way khổng lồ tell when the battery is fully charged. 

How many watts is the Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 5?

50 Watts total system power.

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How loud is the Harman Kardon Onyx 5?

Although it can be measured scientifically, loudness tends lớn be subjective. The Studio 5 is certainly loud enough to lớn fill a large room.

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