Harman Kardon MultiBeam 1100 betters Sonos Arc in Dolby Atmos soundbar wars

The Harman Kardon Citation MultiBeam 1100 is an all-in-one surround sound soundbar package

Harman Kardon Citation MultiBeam 1100
(Image credit: Harman Kardon)

You don't need to look far to find an all-in-one soundbar with built-in Dolby Atmos surround sound decoding. A hotly contested market always brings out the best in companies wanting to rise to the top: and Harman Kardon's new Citation MultiBeam 1100 looks to take on the Sonos Arc in a head-to-head soundbar battle. 

This isn't a small soundbar to beef up the sound of smaller tellies, though, as its 1.15-metre length will attest: this is designed to be an all consuming soundbar to up the quality of even large panel tellies that don't have the internal space for ample speakers.

Citation MultiBeam 1100: Better than Sonos Arc?

So what does the MultiBeam 1100 offer? Principally it's all about top-end sound, from low-end (all the way down to a chonky 52Hz) to the sparkly top-end (up to 20kHz). 

But it's not just about frequency range, it's about sound distribution too: the MultiBeam 1100 comprises 11 speakers, including two dedicated upfiring ones. That's why it's Dolnby Atmos certified - you'll get the surround sound impact from the vertical channels. There's DTS:X decoding too, for relevant content mixed in that 3D format. 

Want even more still? Harman Kardon offers additional Citation products, including a subwoofer, so if you buy the extras then you can transform the MultiBeam into a multi-box 5.1.2 surround system (that's five channels across the front, one subwoofer, and two upfiring). 

For connectivity there's AirPlay, Alexa Multi-Room Music (MRM) and Chromecast all built into the system, while the eARC HDMI channel will play nice with TVs for easy audio passthrough (there's both an input and output channel to see to that, with support for HDR10 and Dolby Vision high dynamic range passthrough too).

So how much will you need to pay for this big ol' soundbar package? The Citation MultiBeam 1100 will be priced £799.99 when it goes on sale in the UK in May this year (it's €999 in Europe). 

As the Tech Editor at T3, Mike handles all things tech - from phones, tablets and laptops, to gaming and computing. Everything that's geeky yet cool. He's been working as a consumer technology journalist for the best part of 15 years, travelling the globe to attend all manner of industry events. You'll always find him setting up a new mobile phone or planning his next get-away.