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Harman Kardon Onyx Mini Review - Sleek and loud!

Nova 2i
Last year, Harman Kardon made the Onyx Mini official, the company's 2017 version of the more portable version of the Onyx rounded loudspeaker line.
Harman Kardon Onyx Mini Review - Sleek and loud!
Meet Harman Kardon's Onyx Mini

Now's its time to check it out! Here's our review!

Harman Kardon Onyx Mini Specs

Drivers: 2x 45 mm transducer
Output: 2x 8W
Frequency Response: 75Hz - 20kHz (-6dB)
Sensitivity: 80dB
Battery: 3,000mAh
Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.1, 3.5 mm, USB input, microSD input, FM Radio
Others: Built-in microphone,
Dimensions: 145 x 158 x 95 mm
Weight: 587 g
Price: PHP 7,999

Disclaimer: This is a borrowed unit from Beyond Innovations Inc.

Unboxing / Accessories

Some of the accessories inside
Some of the accessories inside

Inside, the Onyx Mini comes with the speaker itself, 1x USB power adapter, 3x plugs, 1x USB cable, safety sheet, and warranty card.

The inclusions are nice, but it would have been better if Harman included a 3.5 mm to 3.5 mm audio cable in the package. It has no free case or carrying cloth for dust protection.

Build Quality / Design

Sub, headphone jack slot, and micro USB port
Sub, headphone jack slot, and micro USB port

Build is excellent. It's a combination of plastic, rubber, and some metal parts. It has a matter like rubbery like material behind, metal grill cover in front, and rubber materials on the top and below.
Buttons on top
Buttons on top

It feels sturdy and nicely crafted. But, you should still take good care of it to make it last. It no water and dust resistance as well.
Rubber stopper below
Rubber stopper below

Design-wise, it highlights the traditional rounded shape of the previous Onyx speakers. It's minimalist and compact enough. I also like that it has good type of rubber stopper below to prevent slippage.

Sleek build!

On top, you'll see the call, volume, keys, and Bluetooth buttons, and LED light indicator. At the back, there's the micro USB power and 3.5 mm aux slot.


View on top!
View on top!

The speaker is simple to use. Controls are basic. It has a power button in the middle that you just need to hold to turn the speaker on or off.

Connecting to Bluetooth music players is easy too. Just press the Bluetooth button and wait for it to blink then pair your smartphone or other Bluetooth capable music players. It is pretty stable as well. Personally, I can move around in our room w/ little to zero loss in signal.

It has a dedicated button to answer and drop calls as well. We also like that it still has 3.5 mm female port for wired connectivity.

The other great thing about this speaker is its Wireless Dual Sound mode where you can connect another Onyx Mini for a better and louder stereo sound.

You can even connect up to 3 smart devices at the same time and take turns playing music. 

However, it has no forward and rewind button.

Battery Life

The Harman Kardon Onyx Mini has a 3,000mAh battery capacity with a promise of 10 hours battery life. In our actual usage, we were able to use it in our 2-day trip in Baler and we still have a bar of battery life. That is excellent.

Charging time is average. You'll need at least 3 hours to fully charge this speaker.

Sound Quality

The Harman Kardon Onyx Mini sounded okay. It's designed for the casual bass loving crowd. It can deliver wide and big bass response with crawing like mini subwoofer effect.

Big bass for the size!

However, its massive bass can overpower the mids and make it muddy at times. On low volumes, there are some tracks where we can't properly hear vocals and instrumental separation of the song.

You need to crank the volume all the way up to around 80 percent to properly hear the separation and the treble. Highs is isn't that prominent, but it can deliver some sparkle and less hiss at times.

Soundstage is big for a speaker this small. It has minimal distortion even when you crank the volume all the way up to 100 percent.

Loudness is the key highlight of this speaker. It is very loud for the price.

Call quality and mic is good as well.

Pros - Sleek and portable enough design, stable Bluetooth connection, big bass response, loud sound
Cons - No 3.5 to 3.5 mm cable in the package, no water and dust resistance, no forward and rewind button, no FM Radio, sound quality should have been better for the price


The Harman Kardon Onyx Mini is not the most feature rich speaker in town, but it has one of the sleekest looking design around. Sound quality is alright, bass response is great, but we wished clarity is a bit better for price.

At PHP 7,999, the Onyx Mini is great for those who want a great looking small speaker with long battery life and big bass response.

Build / Design - 4.5
Features - 3.5
Battery Life - 4.25
Sound - 3.75
Average - 4 / 5
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