Harman Kardon launches HK 990 stereo amp and matching CD player

Harman Kardon HD 990

First seen at the IFA Show in Berlin last year, the HK 990 amp is billed as "the most powerful amplifer Harman Kardon has ever built", delivering 150 watts per channel at 8 ohms.

An impressive spec sheet includes a choice of optical and digital inputs, or an analogue-only signal path, as well as fourth-generation Real-Time Linear Smoothing (RLS IV) digital-to-analogue conversion technology, 2.2 channel EzSet/EQ room optimisation, dual subwoofer outputs and an "audiophile quality" phono preamp section.

That not enough? Then how about high-quality stereo Analogue Devices AD1955 DACs, and Harman Kardon's High-Resolution Synchronisation Link (HRS) that allows compatible Harman Kardon CD players (such as the HD 990) to lock themselves to the external clock of the amplifier for a jitter-free connection.

Matching CD player
And if connections are your thing, you get plenty of those: six analogue stereo inputs, four digital inputs (two optical, two coaxial), two MM/MC phono inputs and two XLR inputs (the latter offering better signal-to-noise perfomance).

Naturally, you might want a CD player to match the amp, and Harman Kardon provides the HD 990.

It has a 24-bit/384kHz sample-rate converter, AD1955 DACs for each channel, a 32-bit digital processor and, like the amp, fourth-generation Real-Time Linear Smoothing (RLS IV) for "a more spacious, richly detailed sound".

The XLR balanced outputs can be used to connect the CD player to the XLR inputs on the HK 990 amp, and the player supports MP3, CD-R and CD-RW playback.

And yes, before you ask, we have already requested review samples.