Kharma embodies the seeking to ultimate beauty, where Kharma converges audiophile excellence with aesthetic beauty. A genuine approach to reveal the most subtle musical experience and to unlock immeasurable aesthetic joyful inner experiences in the listener. Like a piece of art in painting can evoke feelings of beauty and excitement in the viewer, the Kharma products are pieces of art in audio vibrations and they will evoke the highest feelings of beauty and wonder in the listener. The recognition of beauty and excellence is actually very easy. One just has to listen to a Kharma product once to be convinced. Please indulge, please let go, please enjoy,… in the endless journey with Kharma, a journey Beyond Imagination. Yours in audio, Charles van Oosterum Founder Kharma International
In 1982 Charles van Oosterum founded O.L.S. Audiotechnology, also known as Oosterum Loudspeaker Systems. Charles founded O.L.S. while he was still studying electronics and in particular electromagnetics and electromechanics at the University of Technology in Eindhoven. Although Charles began with no other goal than to finance his experiments with different designs and driver concepts, word of his talent spread and he was soon sought by individuals and other companies for his design skills. By 1984 O.L.S. was a successful manufacturer of loudspeaker systems for consumer and professional use. That same year Charles introduced the now familiar concept of Satellite subwoofer speakers systems to Holland, which made O.L.S. the first company to do so. During the years O.L.S. was expanding and in 1992, one of the best known audiophiles invited Charles to listen to some music on his existing system. After many hours of listening, this gentleman turned to his guest with a challenge. Although his existing system was good, he wanted something perfect. It just so happened that Charles had a computer design of a system that was “in the works”, but when asked about it Charles had to explain that it only existed on disk. Intrigued, the gentlemen commissioned him to build the system, with one important provision: if he liked it, he would pay for it, if not he wouldn’t. Undaunted, Charles went ahead and built what was to become the Grand Enigma Reference System – with a weight of 12 ton this is one of the largest and most exclusive high-end consumer loudspeakers ever made.
After O.L.S. has gained a reputation for affordable high performance speakers, and spurred on by the success with the Grand Enigma Reference System, Charles launched a new international oriented high-end brand in 1993, named Kharma. Kharma was the first to work with Ceramique drivers, which resulted in 1998 to the similar named Ceramique line consisting of three models. That same year Kharma had several reviews by Soundstage and held several shows in the United States, including San Francisco Hi-Fi’97 Standout Rooms, a launch of the Exquisite Reference 1A during the C.E.S. in Las Vegas and the Hi-Fi’99 show in Los Angeles. In 2001 Kharma introduced the Diamond Tweeter in the Exquisite line, which increased the sound performance in a whole different dimension. The Exquisite Reference kept improving over time and still nowadays exists, but has earned his new name Exquisite Classique. At the same time Kharma kept upgrading and improving the Ceramique line. These upgraded versions of the Ceramique were very popular among customers, companies but also reviewers, which rewarded Kharma with a Golden Ear Award and The Absolute Sound Award for Upper End Loudspeaker in 2002 both for the Ceramique 3.2. Moreover, the Ceramique 3.2 won another Golden Ear Award in 2003, together with an Absolute Sound Award Golden Ear Award for the Enigma Cable series. Kharma couldn’t be more proud.
Charles was still very busy with designing new models and improving the already existing product lines within Kharma, expanding his own knowledge and gathering new technologies. Therefore in 2005 Kharma introduced its first in-house developed electronics, the mono power amplifier titled the Matrix MP150. After receiving the Blue Moon Award for the Matrix MP150, Charles thought it was time to expand the Kharma electronics, and he did so with the launch in 2008 with the pre-amplifier Matrix P150. Because the Kharma brand had now a whole range of successful products, O.L.S Audiotechnology was renamed into Kharma International in 2006. The drive to create electronics that match the quality of the loudspeakers leaded in 2009 and 2010 to the introduction of the Exquisite MP1000 Power Amplifier and the Exquisite P1000 pre-amplifier, which eventually got a full upgrade in 2012 that ran a world-premiere at T.H.E. Show in Las Vegas. Off course this new standards weren’t only set for the Kharma electronics, earlier in 2012 Kharma introduced a whole new product line in 2010 called the Elegance line, which is the successor of the Ceramique line. The believe that a better driver could be developed for the famous Ceramique driver, became a reality by the in-house developed Kharma Composite Driver, which form the base of the new Elegance line. However, as eager Kharma is, even these drivers were further refined to create the superior Omega 7 driver, which is the new standard in the Exquisite line.