September 04, 2009

Harman Kardon® AVR 360 and AVR 460 with Dolby® Volume: performance and high-grade flexibility in an attractive package

BERLIN – Harman Kardon® uses the IFA 2009 show as an opportunity to announce two new receivers that integrate advanced Dolby® Volume technology from Dolby Laboratories. Last year, the audio specialist already turned many heads as the world’s first manufacturer of AV receivers that incorporated this audio technology. Dolby Volume enhances the fine detail of the sound, significantly improving the overall performance of the system. Two 32-bit DSP processors are responsible for handling other indispensable Dolby and DTSTM technologies, including Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio™. In addition, both 7.1-channel AV receivers have the latest versions of the exclusive Logic 7® and Faroudja® DCDi cinema video processing systems, ensuring that the material looks as good as it sounds. The two receivers will be available in stores in September 2009 at a price of EUR 999 and EUR 1.299 respectively (recommended retail price including VAT).

The two AV receivers have been designed to produce the sovereign performance and excellent sound that people already associate with Harman Kardon quality: the high instantaneous current, discretely structured output levels with ultra-wide frequency response respectively generate 75 Watt RMS at 8 Ohm (AVR 460) and 70 Watt RMS at 8 Ohm (AVR 360) on each channel. The generously proportioned output transistors effortlessly produce current peaks of ±35 Amperes. Digital sound signals are converted by a high-grade 192 kHz/24 Bit D/A converter, while a Cirrus Logic® 32-bit DSP processor decodes surround signals. As well as Dolby Volume, the receiver can also handle all commonly used surround formats, including Dolby TrueHD and Dolby Digital Plus, and all current DTS variants, such as DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS-ES® and DTS Neo:6®. Naturally, Harman Kardon’s Logic 7 surround mode is also available.

High-end technology even for the AV neophyte
The AVR 360 and AVR 460 are both multi-zone 7.1- channel AV receivers, equipped with some of the most advanced technology there is for processing and reproducing sound and vision. Both receivers use the DCDi™ (Directional Correlational Deinterlacing) technology of the Faroudja processor to scale conventional video signals to high-resolution 1080p formats (upscaling and/or de-interlacing) and use the HDMI output with the latest V1.3a functions to transmit these to a corresponding television. The result: Whether they are processing digital or analog data, the AV receivers produce high-contrast, flicker-free images with no artificial intervention – in the highest possible resolution. Other technologies include HDMI repeater, EzSet/EQ™ loudspeaker measurement and Zone II and A-BUS (AVR 460) multi-room capability. These and many more functions and features enable the AV receivers to produce the ultimate in sound and picture quality, offering a whole range of applications but always with the same easy handling and installation.

Dolby Volume: solving one of the problems when watching TV
One of the typical problems encountered in home theater systems is the great variation in the dynamism of the program material: ads are mostly too loud, while the sound level of film they interrupt is often comparatively low. Another problem: Fine sound details that were perfectly mixed in the sound studio at full volume, are often lost on the untrained ear at lower volumes.
The AV receivers developed by Harman Kardon use two Dolby Volume methods to solve these problems: The leveler module compensates for volume variations from a source, for example when TV ads or music tracks are played back from a USB drive. The modeler module, on the other hand, tries to restore the sound quality created in the recording studio.

Impressive, unique design
Harman has already received several awards worldwide for the unusual shape and color of its AV receivers. The elegant, unique design of these devices makes them the perfect companions for the other audio/video components and loudspeaker systems from Harman Kardon, as well as for slimline back-projection TVs, as well as plasma and TFT monitors. The dominant feature on the front of the AV receiver is the illuminated white volume control. A blue, two-line dot-matrix display appears behind the discrete, black-toned acrylic cover on the front of the housing. The shimmering silver lower part of the front panel provides an elegant contrast.