The Official H/K Citation Owners Thread

Discussion in 'Solid State' started by 4Play, May 5, 2015.

  1. 4Play

    4Play Super Member

    Messages:
    2,906
    Location:
    WV 25526
    It seems that every brand is represented on AK with the exception of one of audio's well known and most respected company that was founded in 1953 by the legendary Sidney Harman and Bernard Kardon... Harman/Kardon.

    The concept of the H/K Citation Owners Thread is a place where Citation owners can post pictures of their gems, and where owners can come together to discuss any/all topics related to Citation gear, i.e. tweaks, tips, issues that may arise, etc. Also, having one place for Citation related topics will make it easier to search for anyone who needs assistance.

    To those who own any Citation gear, post your pictures and tell us about about your gear... when did you acquire your Citation gear, any work you may have done, I think you all understand what this thread is about.

    Now is the time to show off your Citation gear. It is my hope that we have enough Citation owners who will help make this thread popular.

    Ok guys/gals, post 'em if you got 'em. :music:
     
    Roadrash likes this.

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  2. 4Play

    4Play Super Member

    Messages:
    2,906
    Location:
    WV 25526
    My Citation 19 Amp and Citation 17 Preamp

    I am the proud owner of a H/K Citation power amp and a Citation 17 preamp. I purchased both off the Bay from two different sellers. Before I used these, I decided to have both cleaned/serviced/repaired before using. Good thing I did because the 19 power amp had several issues that would've kept the amp from working.

    One of our members contacted me to offer his services. I sent the 19 first, and he just recently contacted me to let me know the 17 is ready to come back home. Once the 17 is back home, I will take pictures and post them in this thread.

    Not knowing what the sound quality was like before, I am anxious and excited to plug them in my audio system. :music:
     
  3. Blue Shadow

    Blue Shadow I gotta get me a new title

    Messages:
    19,396
    Location:
    SE PA
    WooHoo another OFFICIAL Thread.

    Sold my Citation Eleven years ago. Got a Citation 19 and it sure needed something. Didn't sound to good but it worked just fine. I believe it probably needed a full recap. Sold it overseas without the transformers. Still have the transformers.

    Picked up the 22,23,25 set cheap. Fixed the amp with the help of a long time AKer that had at the time ONE post in his years here. His post said change a cap, I did and the amp came out of protection. Not the best gear but the amp sounds decent, has power and the pre and tuner are remote capable. The pre has 4 tape loops, some video but I don't need to use the yellow inputs for stereo use.

    Now lets talk about those stupid speaker connectors on the amp. They use a bare wire which is pushed through a removable screw in piece and there is a pole piece on the unit so the strands separate. These are held down with those removable screws if they are not lost. What a stupid design and H/K was not the only company to use it.

    As long as we are talking stupid, the way to set bias is to hook up 4-100Ω resistors to 4 points per channel in two series pairs and measure between those two series pairs. Repeat for the other channel. What a goofy way to do that adjustment an the manual is NOT clear as to how much bias is needed. Then there is the heat this amp produces while just sitting there or powering an easy load to low or moderate volume. Seems way to high to me. Maybe we can have a discussion about this on this brand new OFFICIAL H/K Citation Owners Thread

    To fix the stupid speaker wire connections, I made a couple pairs of Banana plug accepting jumpers to make the amp more user friendly. I attached two banana jack to a chunk of big speaker wire a few inches long and these work great. The jacks were sourced from the bay and I like em a lot. I can dig up the link if I must.

    Pictures, maybe sometime. I didn't find any in a quick look of my pics.

    I've been told these are the last of the Citations and not the best but they work fine if you don't have bad solder joints in them. Last Citation because Harman International bought Mark Levinson and they are the high end manufacturer now.

    If I keep going, I'm going to add the Turntables to the list of stuff to talk about in this OFFICIAL THREAD. Well the straight line tracking ones, maybe. I liked the ST-7 that we used in college. That thing was a tank with all the folks that used it.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2015
  4. 4Play

    4Play Super Member

    Messages:
    2,906
    Location:
    WV 25526
    My Kenwood KA9100 had the same speaker connect. I bought some pin connectors and they did a great job. The downside to using pin connectors is they eventually limp, which could possibly affect the sound. You try that and see if that helps. You can get these at Parts Xpress and/or Monoprice. Blue Jeans Cable has some stronger pin connectors, but the pin could break.

    I hope this helps. Post some pics of your Citation series gear. Would like to see what you have/had. :music:
     
  5. Blue Shadow

    Blue Shadow I gotta get me a new title

    Messages:
    19,396
    Location:
    SE PA
    I do not believe the 9100 had those connectors. 9100 had normal connectors. the Cit 22 has stupid connectors. Hjames shows them on her amp in this thread:

    http://www.audioheritage.org/vbulle...2-Ripped-off-via-ebay-the-6260-Amp-Saga/page2

    See the wire going in the center? The screw down also comes out completely and there is a ring of metal in the connector and on the screw down.

    The 9100 uses bare wire accepting from above or below kinda normal screw down speaker connections.
     
  6. 4Play

    4Play Super Member

    Messages:
    2,906
    Location:
    WV 25526
    I'm sorry. You are right. However, you have a choice which speaker connects you want to use. You can use either the connects on the 17, which are similar to my McIntosh MA5100, or you can use the connects on the 19. Both are very different and I have no idea which would be the best to use.
     
  7. Blue Shadow

    Blue Shadow I gotta get me a new title

    Messages:
    19,396
    Location:
    SE PA
    I got some of these:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/20-pcs-Copp...002?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2a16912772

    and stuffed them with as big a chunk of wire I could and attached them to the amp. Banana plugs work great with these and I like dual banana plugs, Pomona mostly as there are some junk, off brand dual banana plugs out there.
    The big wire spreads out nicely under that screw down on the amp for a good solid connection. Pomona's make good solid connections inside those plugs which are silicone insulated and the metal part is completely inside the insulation. Solid place to solder on some wired, too.

    I speak so highly of these that I need to add: IAINWAWTL
     
  8. dshoaf

    dshoaf That high voltage buzz Subscriber

    Messages:
    9,995
    Location:
    Santa Cruz, CA
    My first HK Citation amp was a Citation V, the ~35 wpc tube amp - the little brother to the mighty Citation II. I paid $20 for it and fixed one leaky cap causing red plating. I drove a pair of Bose 901 Series II's with it while living in a mobile home in 1973 while in college.

    Subsequent Citations in the past decade or so:

    - Citation I pre
    - Citation II amp
    - Citation III tuner
    - Citation Eleven pre
    - Citation 17 pre
    - Citation 16 power amp

    Not all of these at any one time but a running series of gear for restoration and then finding homes for.

    I've always felt that the Citation gear took a backseat to McIntosh in its run of better than 25 years. The main reason, I believe, is the more industrial look rather than the luxurious presentation of the glass-fronted Mac gear.

    From a sonic standpoint, I believe they're on the same plane - not to say one or the other is any better. They were easily comparable at price points and competitive features.

    From a build quality standpoint, it is just as good as Mac gear, too. I have enjoyed learning about each generation's circuit topologies and approaches while stepping through restorations.

    For this reason, I've always like HK top of the line gear and have come to respect the design teams. They knew their stuff back then!

    Cheers,

    David
     
  9. Blue Shadow

    Blue Shadow I gotta get me a new title

    Messages:
    19,396
    Location:
    SE PA
    Their bottom of the line gear wasn't bad either. The 330 is a sweet unit in at least three iterations. But this OFFICIAL thread is about the Citation gear so back to that.
     

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  10. gslikker

    gslikker Super Member

    Messages:
    1,964
    Location:
    Close to Alkmaar, Netherlands
  11. 4Play

    4Play Super Member

    Messages:
    2,906
    Location:
    WV 25526
    David... You will be glad to know that the Citation series DID NOT take a backseat to McIntosh. I read an article that said the Citation series was meant to be comparable to McIntosh, and the series was considered high end audio. Look at the specifications on the Citation 19 (Black) compared to the McIntosh MC2105

    Power Output: 100 watts per channel into 8Ω (Stereo), 220W into 16Ω (Mono)
    Power Output: 105 watts per channel into 8 Ω

    Frequency Response: 5Hz to 50kHz
    Frequency Response: 10Hz to 100kHz

    Total Harmonic Distortion: 0.08%
    Total Harmonic Distortion: 0.25%

    Damping Factor: 125
    Damping Factor: 13

    Input Sensitivity: 1.25V
    Input Sensitivity: 0.5V

    Signal to Noise Ratio: 100dB
    Signal to Noise Ratio: 90dB

    Dimensions: 406 x 133 x 375mm
    Dimensions: 411 x 181 x 368mm

    Weight: 38lbs 13oz
    Weight: 65lbs 0.6oz

    Seems to me the performance/price ratio goes to the Citation.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2015
  12. sberger

    sberger Hard Core Geezer Subscriber

    I've been using a Citation 19 that I got on the auction site a couple of months ago and generally it's worked out very well. I find the speaker connections to be a hassle, in getting the wire to stay in the connectors(I'm going in through the front hole of the connectors, as opposed to trying to wrap the bare wire around the metal and screwing the connectors against it, which I've had no luck in doing). I assume I'm making a full connection by watching the front panel lights, and from what my ears tell me, but I can't be sure.

    I've had best success using the 19 with a Yamaha C-4 preamp. I also have a Citation 21 pre, but found the sound much to dry and thin. I've also tried it with a couple of different tube pre's and found they weren't the best match either.

    I'm using the amp to power Klipsch Cornwalls, and KLH 23 speakers. Great warm sound on both.

    Overall, quite pleased with the 19.
     
  13. 4Play

    4Play Super Member

    Messages:
    2,906
    Location:
    WV 25526
    Read post #7 and click on the link. These should help you out.
     
  14. 4Play

    4Play Super Member

    Messages:
    2,906
    Location:
    WV 25526
  15. bktheking

    bktheking Gitter Done!

    Messages:
    12,850
    Location:
    Ottawa Ontario
    One and only

    [​IMG]
     
    MarZutra likes this.
  16. 4Play

    4Play Super Member

    Messages:
    2,906
    Location:
    WV 25526

    BKtheking... Every time you post pictures of your receiver, I get the warm fuzzies. Yours is the first Citation receiver I have ever seen. I would be curious to know if there are many more out in the wild. Was the receiver considered rare in regards to the Citation series?
     
  17. bktheking

    bktheking Gitter Done!

    Messages:
    12,850
    Location:
    Ottawa Ontario
    Yes rare, the number is unknown but I have read ~750 units were built. It passed the run in test after rebuild so I put it into the rotation Monday- the 1280 is now in my work room. I want to listen to it on my tannoy's.

    [​IMG]
     
    MarZutra likes this.

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  18. sberger

    sberger Hard Core Geezer Subscriber

    Thanks. I tried flex pin connectors, but they weren't much of an improvement, but I'll give these a try. Once the the wire is in the connector everything sounds great, but I just have to be careful around them.

    Regarding the 21, I'd be interested if others have found it to sound as I described. I was hoping that it and the 19 would have some serious synergy, but I found the C-4 to have more of it(of course, could simply be my own preferences). Are there preamps in the solid state Citation line that are considered better than the 21?
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2015
  19. 4Play

    4Play Super Member

    Messages:
    2,906
    Location:
    WV 25526
    What Is "Twin Powered"

    I found this article that explains the concept of Twin Powered to be very insightful to those who are not familiar.

    The H/K Twin Power receivers were rather unique in that the left and right channels each had their own power transformer, rectifier circuit, and filter capacitors. This was somewhat common practice in the mid-and late 1970′s, but such a feature was only found on top-shelf integrated amps. Other companies, such as Marantz, touted “Dual Power” systems, but these were not fully twin powered like the H/K's. These “Dual Power” designs used two secondary windings on a common transformer core, negating some of the benefits of a truly twin-power design.

    The benefits of the design were numerous:
    • Double the current capability
    • Increased peak power
    • Incredible channel separation
    • High-dampening factor

    H/K receivers, especially the twin-power x30 series, are my favorite to listen to. They have a simple and understated sound that results in little or no listening fatigue even after several hours of moderately loud listening. The 730 is exceptional in all these regards. Background noise is almost non-existent allowing for a perfect canvas onto which to “paint” music. Bass tones are always satisfying, and midrange and treble are very clear. Clipping is graceful, resulting in slightly compressed sound, but no apparent DC nastys. The 730 also demonstrates extraordinary tonal balance. The bass and treble controls are virtually unneeded as the sound from the receiver is naturally so full and well balanced.
     
  20. 4Play

    4Play Super Member

    Messages:
    2,906
    Location:
    WV 25526

    FWIW, I am pairing my Citation 19 with the Citation 17. The tech who repaired both the 19 and 17 told me that my 17 was one of the best. He also upgraded parts on the equalizer board and phono stage. I am planning on using the phono stage, which is why I asked him to make sure it was working properly.

    You may want to try a Citation 17 to see if you get any improvements.
     

Share This Page