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Well here's my first post so please don't burn me at the stake for asking this. I got the bug again after 20 years (I'm now in one place longer than 2 years, used to travel a lot) to put together a really decent listening room. I remembered Bose speakers being really good. After picking up several current product related magazine I started noticing no reviews of Bose speakers.

After finding this forum and seeing some of the really good post I thought I might ask these question here, so if this is not the place let me know. I also noticed that Classic speaker doesn't support or I didn't find anyone asking too many questions about Bose but did notice that it was being slim'd down to only New England makers. I also noticed some of digs about Bose sueing everyone.

Are Bose still good speakers for the money?

Why doesn't anyone review them any longer?

I was looking at sitting up a classic system which would include a set of older 501's should I seek something better?

Mainly looking for some random opionions on Bose in general...

Thanks to all who reply.

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Well, it's not a bad question; I predict it will bring you various answers that express a wide degree of opinions.

On the one hand, if you search the audio sites, you will find plenty of "audiophiles" who will make negative comments about Bose. Most of these opinions will be directed at the 901's (which I believe have gone thru 6 series), but to some degree they will also apply to other models such as the 501's. These comments will say, in so many words, "yes, Bose produce a big sound, but they are not "accurate", etc. etc.

Another set of replies will tell you that various owners have never enjoyed a speaker more; that they (Bose 901s) play extremely loud without breaking, and they produce a very "big sound" and an "exciting sound."

What is interesting is that Bose elicits such a diverse set of opinions (almost from "junk" to "the best").

Personally, I think that there are several types of users.

Most users want a moderate amount of volume that sounds "good enough" and mostly they don't want to spend "too much"; they just want to enjoy their music. In most cases, for these users hifi is not a hobby; it's just something you buy once or twice in a lifetime, you listen to it, and you don't think twice about it. The buying and ownership experience is almost like that of a TV; it's just a way to get a form of information - video (and a little audio) for TV, and audio/music for hifi.

Then there are users who want the most "accurate", "detailed", "high definition", "open", "airy", "spatially correct depth and width of sound stage", etc, etc. For these people, figuring out what causes what sounds, ie, the hobby of hifi, becomes an important objective and often an end in itself. Generally, these people want a moderately good amount of volume, but they are into the details of the sound more than the last dB of volume. Sometimes they also want systems that play extremely loud, in which case they might conclude they need two systems - one their exquisitely accurate, critical listening system and one their "head banger" - but even the head banger system components are selected in pursuit of "accuracy, detail, etc."

Then there are the users who mostly like to listen to very loud music and who want to fill the room with a "big" sound. This would be, if we were stereotyping (no pun intended, but that was pretty good, huh?), your Bose 901 user, and your big JBL user, and maybe your Klipsch user, etc. These users would not by any means concede that anything (detail, accuracy, definition, etc.) is missing from their systems, they would however not worry overly about such critiques, they would just enjoy cranking up their systems and getting into the music. (The audiophiles will tell you that they love their music too... and they would focus completely on their music, if they could just get their system to sound the way they want it to sound; at which time they would start thinking about how to get a new system with still better sound. Occassionally, you will find an audiophile who is just plain happy and content with their system, but generally this is rare.)

In the end, the speakers (especially), along with the entire system, should produce a sound that is right for your budget and your listening preferences.

Personally, I fall largely into the audiophile camp that mostly values "subtle detail, high definition, etc." (which I generally don't ascribe to Bose), but at the same time, I have heard some Bose systems that made me want to party. In fact, I've been watching eBay for a pair; I think 901s and a Phase Linear 400 could be a blast, figuratively and literally. I think there is a role and no doubt, a big market for systems such as Bose; it's just a matter of what you are trying to accomplish.

But in any event, check it out; I predict you are going to find a wider spectrum of opinions on Bose than almost any other speakers. If this is correct, just rely on all the info you take in, including your own listening, and then trust your instincts.


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Guest rickcee

Hi I just read the rant that was linked in previous post. Interesting. I suspect the guy is correct as to the 'theater systems' . . . The old 'Hi Fi' systems ( 301, 501 , 601 ) got good tests in the stereo mags. (High Fidelity, St.Review ) as far as the frequency response graphs show. Problem - the foam rot which is not in any way only a Bose company problem - If you get speakers more than 10 years old, foam surround replacement will be necessary ( imagine that on the 9 speaker 901's). A couple years ago, I got new bass speakers from Bose for my sisters 301 's ($62. each.)

I'd say Bose's STEREO speakers are good but somewhat overpriced.

Anyway, I'd say get what you want. If you really want some Bose, Get them. I also agree with the poster who suggested that a large % of people just want 'casual listening' and a few will be never satisfied 'audiophiles' And a third group will just want 'good sound for the $'. Perhaps with strong favoritism for one brand or another. For me, the late '60's AR 6 , Dyna 25, EPI 100 were at the point of maximum bang for buck. and if new, would be excellent sounding speakers today. (and I srongly prefer real wood finish to vinyl.That's my 'thing') Enjoy Rick

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Regarding Bose, I personally feel they fall into the "least amount of performance, for the most amount of money" camp. There are less revealing speakers, and some may even cost more than comparably performing Bose offerings. Without reading any of the links, I feel that people who ARE offended by Dr. Bose' offerings, would be less offended if Bose didn't tout them as the "end all" in speakers, and charged a bit less for them. I give the company a solid "A" for advertising, and that's about it. But in 2002 America, that "it" carries a lot of weight. People can't be bothered doing the legwork/research, don't seem to trust their own ears, and just go with the advertising and hype. The guy DOES sell a lot of speakers.


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I saw this at http://www.audioasylum.com; they have lots of "regular" hifi Q&A, and they seem to have their share of WAF discussions; after watching this Bose thread here on arsenal, I couldn't resist adding the post from over there....


Posted by jackrandom ( i ) on August 28, 2000 at 09:18:41:

In Reply to: "Babe Magnet" speakers? posted by gibbs on August 26, 2000 at 20:38:53:

Funny you should mention it. My wife had a group of women friends over and they all asked what my Martin Logans were. When my wife told them they were stereo speakers, they then asked if they were Bose ;-0

Oh, the humanity!!


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