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The Honest To God Truth About Bose Speakers, AMEN !!!

Bose speakers are very heavily advertised in all types of media. This company spends many times more on advertsing than any other audio/video company, it is not even close. The results are very effective. Ask anyone who is a newbie or only casually experienced in home theater and they will express the opinion that they have heard that Bose is the best. This is not surprising, the name is still ringing in their ears.

The emphasis at Bose is on marketing and the illusion of quality sound thru subjective techniques. They use low quality drivers and enclosures. They try to limit dealers to demonstrating their speakers under controlled environments that do not allow objective comparisons to other brands. They push the simple operation and lack of technical functions to those that are intimidated by complicated systems. It is all very effective.

Of those people who buy Bose there are two camps.

First are those who are objective and fair minded people. Eventually they realize that they paid a very high price for a comparatively mediocre speaker system. See the consumer reviews for example at You will hear of many disatisfied owners at a far higher level than any other well known brands.

Second are the group who either never fairly compare to different brands or are the type who can never admit than anything they have purchased is not the best.

This is the only well known brand that is in the same class of marketing and pricing overkill. Those who are knowledgeable are negative about Bose because they are trying to save others from making a poor choice.

There are many systems in the $500 -$2500 range. We all have an opinion as to which ones are slightly superior to the others. It is usually a matter of well thought out investigations and audible differences through auditioning.

I highly recommend in this price range speakers from Athena, Axiom, JBL, Definitve Tech, Paradigm, NHT, Energy, Monitor Audio, Klipsch, Infinity, Polk, Atlantic Tech, just to mention a few. I have purposely tried here to keep with fairly well known brands and away from the "audiophile brands." We could discuss forever the differences among these fine speakers. What we would all agree is that Bose is not anywhere near these other speakers in sound quality per dollars spent.

Home Theater Magazine and and others have given Bose speakers the lowest ratings I have ever seen in pro reviews.

Some here will post again complaining about the "Bose bashing." I for one will repeat my opinions as long as I continue to read threads that ask, "is Bose really the best."


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Bose is overpriced

Bose has good quality, but it is not worth the price they are demanding. There are better systems out there.

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At last, someone said it very well. Bose is just one of those companies that use subjective marketing tactics to get you to buy their stuff.

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In Fact, Here Is A System That Sounds 5 Times As Good As....

.....Bose systems costing way more.

Axiom is one of those direct from factory to consumer companies that gets everything right. An outstanding system for just over $1300. I might consider soon, 3 of the M2i's for the left, center and right and 2 of the QS4's surrounds, plus a sub for a new system. Very fine speakers.


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Bose is geard to "Suckers"

by "Suckers", I mean those people who become interested in "Home Theater Audio" but they don't really know anything and are fearful of doing any research. So they read the hype or walk into a Bose outlet store (the latter is what my father-in-law did) and they see the "all-in-one" solution that Bose offers and it seems great. They've neve spent the time comparing other systems so they don't know how bad the Bose sounds. When they hear a Bose setup and hear the salesman's hype, it's a convincing pitch. The "sucker" buys the Bose because it just solved the "mysterious" home theater audio confusion. Rather than expend the effort to learn, the "sucker" figures that Bose must be the answer because he/she has seen all of the advertising in PC magazines, in money magazines, in home gardening magazine, etc. They've never heard of Aziom, Energy, Infinity or any of the other much better audio speakers. And they neve heard of receiver brands like Yamaha, Denon, etc, either. Any of these other brands will blow Bose away. Bose simply does what any person (company) does when selling their "snake oil". They advertise the heck out of an inferior product, and when the "sucker" comes wandering by, Bose sounds so good.

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The Honest To God Truth About Bose Speakers, AMEN !!!

Well said!!!!!!!
Bo$e F.U.D. is pounded into consumers heads!

"If you can't dazzle them with brilliiance, then baffel them with Bull."
PT Barnum is correct!!!! John

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Quit beating around the bush

If you don't like Bose, just say so.

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(NT) (NT) so
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A Few Kind Words about Bose

My wife and I have a number of Bose products in our home. I will be the first to agree that Bose is relatively expensive and there are higher "sound" quality options available. Having said that, though, Bose has developed products that are attractive to a significant percentage of the market. Its products attract a number of market niches. These include people who don't want to see speakers (e.g. the small cubes), people who do not want to have to spend the considerable time necessary to investigate and decide upon multiple brands in order to have one overall system that works, etc.

I want to mention one other aspect of Bose. Several times, I have needed technical support to make something work properly. I have received such help from both the local Bose store near where we live as well as from their technical support people. The latter I communicated with both by phone and email. I have seldomm seen such high quality service and concern that our products work correctly. Clearly, Bose has excellent leadership that inspires in its people a consistently high quality of customer service.

To sum up, Bose may not be selling the highest "sound" quality product on the market, but they are selling a package of design and service which is important to a significant percentage of the market.

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Lots of equipment over the years

I've bought LOTS but not much recently. My old quality equip still runs though I've had a few repairs. Speakers in particular can be very tricky to buy. Even when you have many models and brands to A-B test. In recxent years I've only seen Bose in Bose stores where there is nothing to compare with. Or at warehouse stores where copmparing is just not in the cards. Ther are very few "stereo stores" where one can do comparing, but lots of high end magazines espousing $50,000 home systems. So it is very hard to pick out the equipment that suits your budget and taste anymore.

As for me, I'll stick with my old Dahlquist DQ10 system with active subwoofer, and with a few mods. I bought those after comparing them to many good speakers (including the orig Bose 901) in a real stereo store; the Bose didn't compare well then and I'll bet they don't compare well now. I do like their woofer system in principle, but it is too easily overdriven into distortion.

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Bose products especially there acoutimas system is mainly for people who live in apartments with limited space.Big city like NY where everyone is living on top of one another.You can't expect those little cubes to sound as good as a full size speaker do you?????????. They are good at what they do provide good to excellent sound in a limited space.

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Speakers In Small Rooms

There are many speakers brands that make relatively small satellite/sub systems (I'll admit that they are not quite as small as the Bose cubes, but close, except maybe the Def Tech Pro Cinema 60). See the list of some of the brands on the first post in this thread. All of these brands make speakers that are small, sound excellent and cost less than the overpriced sytems from Bose. Anyone who thinks only Bose makes speakers for small rooms hasn't looked around.

If you don't think there are relatively small systems that sound as good as ''full size speakers'' you also need to do some looking around. The secret is in the quality powered sub that many times is out of site. In the case of the Outlaw Audio LFM-2 sub, it is small, sounds superb and looks like a fine piece of furniture, all for $299.

Jeff1947 makes a good point. Many buy Bose because it is simple to set up and operate. I sure hope they give good CS with the price they charge.

If you really want great CS, great prices plus superb sounding systems (small and large) look here:

If you want an excellent Bose tower speaker don't look here:


PS I owned the original Bose 901's. They were not a good choice for the regular consumer with a receiver. They were reasonably well built and sounded fairly good (however, lots of room blending problems due to their design), but needed a huge amp. Bose has gone downhill very fast since then.

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Dahlquist DQ10s were a fine chioce

They surely bettered the Bose 901s you compared at that time. Enjoy! Good speakers aren't too subject to tech improvements, a chioce of oldies but goodies are enjoyable for decades and needn't be fodder for replacement.

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Bose Bashers

I bought my Bose AM 5II in 1990 they were the rear speakers to my sound system.At the time I lived in apartment so space was limited.They are now the side surround to my 7.1 system in my basement.They did the job then and they do a good job now 16yrs later.No they are not the best but when I bought them, the market was not flooded with competitors. I still stand by my statement that the little satellite speakers do a good job for their size.I thought the purpose of this forum is to enlighten through constructive dialogue not make a person feel like a jerk because his knowledge of speakers may not be as extensive as yours.AS far as there advertisements that what the free enterprise system is all about market your product.If they fooled me back in 1990 that they had a good product then they also fooled alot of car manufactures who include bose system in there high end cars LEXUS for example to this day.
FYI they are now making a car shock system that is suppose to be light years ahead of any shock system.

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Correction: Lexus Does Not Use Bose....

...They use Mark Levinson.

One of the all time great marques in high end.

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If there were more salespeople like you everyone would own a home theater system period. In closing I sure hope the big wigs at Bose never check out this chat room. call me stupid but when I see half the ads on t.v. are Bose ads I know half the money I spend on there speakers are going to be wasted on ads stewart

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Bose is used by Acura

Acura includes a Bose system in some or all of its cars and SUVs.

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buddyluv, You Misunderstand The.....

.....reason for all the Bose bashing on this and other Home Theater/Audio & Video forums. Notice, you will not see this for any other brand of speakers except for some individual comments between posters.

There is no intention to bash you personally or make you feel like a jerk. We are talking about Bose speakers not you. Don't take it personally. I have made a number of mistakes over the years. I try to learn from others previous mistakes so that I do not make the same ones myself. I admit it was a mistake to have bought the original 901's. Am I trying to make myself into a jerk, of course not. If I hear of someone today who is interested in buying the current 901 I will explain to them why I think it is not a good value and the inherent problem with the 901 design for most home placement.

What I and others who point out the over-pricing/over-advertising problem with Bose are trying to do is to warn those who might consider buying Bose. We are not trying to embarrass those who have already bought them.

We have no problem with advertising within our great free enterprise system. What we object to is the ''business model'' of Bose with the high percentage of their manufacturing budget that is put into advertising as a ratio to their expenditures into product build and sound quality.

It is obviously very effective. Those that have very little knowledge about speakers have heard the name Bose so often in every type of media, that the name association sinks into their head. They think, I hear the name so much it must be the best.

We have no problem with advertising, but we choose to buy speakers that put a much larger percentage of the actual cost into the product. Bose is the only speaker company whose advertising budget is so way out of wack.

Auto makers put Bose speakers in their cars not because they are the best but because of the name recognition. If Acura said they had Paradigm speakers in their cars most people would say ''huh?''. I'll guarantee you they don't overcharge the auto makers like they do the consumers.

BTW, all your speakers including the side surround and rear surround should be the exact same make and model or the same series. They should also match the fronts in the tweeters and ideally the mids. This is not advice to bash your Bose, it is a great tip that gives the best surround effect and is very obvious in the smooth surround blend it produces.

If this was a vacuum cleaner forum you would probably hear us bashing the Oreck Vacuum (or Kirby).


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Roadrunner6, you speak well

Roadrunner6, you speak well. Thank you for your further explaining.

While I again will not dispute the relative quality of the speaker sound (something that frankly I'm not capable of doing at my advanced age), I do believe that Bose is a very well run company...albeit a company with a "mission" that evidently focuses on a market other than audiophiles. Through its product design and marketing, it applies to the relatively large market of affluent consumers who either choose to not learn about other alternatives or who just want a one vendor system that plugs into the wall without much further effort. And that market is large. The other point I previously made in an earlier posting was that my experience with Bose personnel (both sales and technical support) has been outstanding. They go far beyond what you normally find in sales and tech support personnel at other consumer product companies. That implies to me a very customer focused central leadership within the company.

A couple of other thoughts, partly to add to the above and partly for amusement.

I bought my first Bose productsin 1978 when I was living in Hong Kong. It was a set of 901s. After they'd sat in storage from 1986 through 2001, I gave them to my brother...who was overjoyed to receive them. As they didn't sound to good, I called Bose and they admitted that there was some problem (somethiing that ate the insides of some material now no longer used). So, if we sent back the 1978 purchased speakers, they would send out a new set for $800. We did that and my brother is now really overjoyed.

My brother is just turning 64 this month. I'm now 58. In maybe 1985 when I was a little shy of 40 and my wife was maybe 30 (but looked 18...she's of Chinese background from Singapore), we went to buy our first CD player. At the store, I asked the clerk what made the $400 model worth $200 more than the $200 model. He looked at my wife and me and said in roughly these words: "You already over the hill with deteriorating ears. You won't be able to tell the difference. Buy the $200 model." My wife was appropriately insulted at being thought to be so aged. The point, of course, is that Bose has a very significant market of baby boomers with deteriorating (or maybe deteriorated is a better word) ears...and other body parts as well. They're not going to run out of customers anytime soon.

All the best,


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I can relate

I am in my mid 50s and also over the hill. I have been in emergency service for 27 years and listened to too many sirens. I just spent a lot of money to get my eyes fixed but my ears may never be the same. My priorities are probably different than some and thats ok. Enjoyed the discussion.

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Bose bashing on this and other Home Theater/Audio

I still do live sound and Bo$e has meesed up that market also. I know of Churches that have spent large sums of money on Bo$e speakers and have a terrible sounding system beacuse of it.
The artist that I work with did a concert in a Church that had just spent $20,000 on a new sound system with Bo$e speakers. I got to the Church and listned to the Bo$e system and then set up our $5000 sound system and blew the $20,000 Bo$se system away!!!!!!! What is the Bo$e statment that it sounds as good as systems costing 5 times as much???? BULL FEATHERS!!!!! John

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Dahlquist DQ-10....

...One of the all time greats!

Pretty much started the modern age of high end. Great speakers. There are whole message boards devoted to those beauties. Many have modded them and gotten them to really "sing."

They are a bit bass shy and always did benefit from a good sub.

Comaring them to Bose is like comparing a classic Mercedes to a broken down Yugo.

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Bose are just after one thing Money

I have been a Bose fan and customer for many years and like your self have several Bose speaker systems around the house even have the headphones.
I have a high regard for Bose until 6 week ago when my bose acoustimass 15 gave up on me.
I rang Bose who said they would pick it up fix it and send it back. Free of charge. What a service I hear you say!

Well 1 week later I get the sub back to find it hasn't been fix?
When I rang Bose to inquire why it hadn't been fixed they informed me it due to the fact they do not have the spares to fix it?

Why did thy say they would pick it up and fix it if they knew they didn't have the parts?

I then asked could I buy another sub to power the cube speakers. If you do not know, you need the sub to power the cube speaker. An amp could well blow them and or not but it well not sound to great.

Again No from Bose.
So I have a sub that's not working and 5 cube speakers sitting on the sands in the corner of the room doing nothing.
Bose have let me down.

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Here is a great bose story.

At my store costumers would always wanted to here the bose AM123456 system, So I would take them In our speaker room and turn on the Infinity TSS system, and let them enjoy for a minute, and then half way through the demo Ill stop and say, OH Wrong speakers sorry let me turn the bose on for you.

It amazing they always want me to go back to the infinity system for a second time, and I tell them hey these are half the price, and the spare money you can get a better reciever and Install.

I like to call it a trade off my company makes more money, and the customer get a better system and its hooked up correctly.

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(NT) (NT) Good for you!!!!! John
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Nothing wrong with Bose

Lets see. I read stereophile for years, know all the top equipment, have
top equipment as a sound system in my home, know what top equipment
sounds like, know soundstaging & other fancy stuff about critical
listening. Yet I just bought a Bose Lifestyle 235 system for my new 50"
TV. Oh my gosh! I got ripped off! Nope, not even remotely. Bose bashers,
suck on this.

Bose uses paper cones and foam surrounds, how can I take it?!! Ever see
their voice coils or magnets? Yeah, didn't think so. I like the $ they
spent on those instead of plastic cones. By the way what does plastic do
over time - oh yeah degrades.

Does your home theater system upgrade suitable video to 1080p? Darn.

Does your system sit unobtrusively in your room, yet filling it with at
LEAST much better than average sound, that no one but critical listeners
even realize is not the VERY BEST? Shoot!

Does your system allow you to wirelessly listen to audio in up to 14 other rooms in your house? Argh!

Did your system come with a remote (worth about $300 by my research)
that controls every single component you have? Both IR & RF? With an
IR emitter included if needed? Rats!

Does it have onscreen navigation, literally telling you how to turn
stuff on & off if you need a little help? 3D capability?
Automatically adjust itself to your room acoustics and seating
positions? Uh oh....

Shut your pie holes and admit what they do, they do well. And do you
really believe they sell their stuff for an exorbitant amount of money,
thereby making some mammoth profit. If so you are an economic moron. Oh
yeah, I have an MBA too so I can lecture you on that if necessary, but I
am done. Enjoy your bashing, I will enjoy my new system.

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Considering the price or not Bose is very average

Let's get one thing out of the way.... The following is based only on one factor... "Fidelity" ie: the sound quality... isn't that all that matters?
The truth is taking price into consideration or not Bose is mediocre, it's not that the sound quality is not good for the price! It's not good period
Who cares about the menus and the remote etc..etc... it's a sound system, it has to sound good!
Why is it that Bose does not allow you to test their speakers with your own material? They always have some crude preloaded material like "toy story" on their systems.. to cancel out the noise(THD) from their speaker. Why is it that no store is allowed to hook up the Bose speakers to the an A/V receiver in an audioroom with sound isolation and more importantly allow you to compare them to other speakers???
Unlike you my friend I took 6 months to put my sound system together! I don't know how much it ended up costing and quit frankly I don't the heart of it is an Onkyo 7.1 (only 75 wattsX8 which is enough, 40Hz to 20kHz,THD of 0.08 and Signal to noise ratio of 105) and then every piece was selected separately over time as I compared tons of speakers to select my center piece, my fronts, the surrounds and then the backs and the Sub! still afterward made more adjustments!

I know all the specs on every single piece and more importantly I made my final decisions using my ears!!! And that is how my friend you put together a sound system! Any audiophile out there with agree with me on this....yes your MBA serves you well as far as figuring out that Bose makes a lot of profit!! Have you ever wondered why is it that there is so much Bose advertisement for Bose and almost none for any good audio brand???

If you really care about sound, (and not showing off to your friends) go to an audioroom and try some of the following brands...PSB, B&W, B&O, Infinity, Mirage and Energy, these are some of the few brands that do not make Garbage, just about anything they make is good or great depending on where it falls in their range.... There are still some very good JBL, Klipsch and Polk Audio speakers out there...but it's a mixed bag! And by the Definitive Tech also sucks bigtime, you can find that out for yourself also!

Don't take my word for it "trust your own ears"

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Bose bashing

I agree with the apparent Bose bashers. Your opinion is very slanted in by opinion against Bose as I have had a lot of speakers over the years (in my 50's) I played in a rock band back in the 70's and have had a lot of different speakers over the years such as JBL, Altec Lansing, Klipsch, a Kustom, Orange, Fender, Marshall, etc. and have found the Bose overall to be the most superior even though they tend to be pricier like anything else you get what you pay for. As I am writing this I am listening to my Bose sound link wireless which has a better sound than any other wireless I have listened to other than the Marshall which has to plug in and is twice the size for $100 more.

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Deaf and misinformed

Sorry, but that's what I am mostly hearing here.

Truth be told, you can do better for less. Bose are marginal quality and are overpriced.

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Good but NOT worth the prices!

Oh my goodness!!! Could not have said it better myself! Bose is SO over-rated! Wish I'd checked C-Net before I purchased my $1200 soundboard! ....but sometimes you have to see for yourself. Because of their advertising technique ANNND the controlled environment that the dealers use (YES! THAT IS VERY TRUE!), and the pricing, you would expect top notch from Bose. With high end pricing you expect high end quality. The soundbar I purchased does sound good but severely overpriced! NOT worth $1200! $700 or $800 at most. Mayyyybe even $900 but definitely NOT $1200.

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The Honest To God Truth About Bose Speakers, AMEN !!!

Bose is famous from their 901's, which are great speakers IF used properly, with the right EQ, amp, placement, etc. They know how to maximize a 4" full range driver. no crossover, time and phase coherent, (but only from 50-13k, 95% of music is in that range anyway) Everything else they make is overhyped junk, headphones included. They simply ride on the laurels of their 901's, that's it, done!

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