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Bang & Olufsen, overrated?

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 

People keep telling me this is the best, overall I mean.

But somehow I doubt that, and I've already heard B&O having an "apple" like image in the audiophile world?

 

Any thoughts?

post #2 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by naike View Post

People keep telling me this is the best, overall I mean.

But somehow I doubt that, and I've already heard B&O having an "apple" like image in the audiophile world?

 

Any thoughts?


B&O is a long way from being the best, but it's not really overrated either, as long as you're clear about what you're getting ... typically, it's last-generation tech superbly packaged in a way that no one else in the world approaches.  Not really "Apple", either, in that it's not very innovative in a core sense.  Occasionally they produce something world-class - there was a belt-drive TT about 30 years ago, and the current big active speakers are interesting.

 

I have a Beovision 7 TV in my apartment (see my avatar) and it looks fabulous switched off (its normal state) and fairly acceptable switched on.  The sound is only OK at best.  It's a decor thing, with about 70% of the best available performance.

post #3 of 31
Thread Starter 

Ah, I'm not really good at audio stuff, and I only know a few mainstream manufacturers, but I like to research, I was just asking because a few friends have been speaking about them, and I just wanted to prove that there are many manufacturers, that do their stuff better, and cheaper I guess?

post #4 of 31

Yes, probably 75% of manufacturers do it better, and probably 99% do it cheaper.  There's a place in the world for B&O - my living room is one, for instance, but my music room isn't.

post #5 of 31

Yes, B&O definitely has a place in the world, but generally not considered an "audiophile" product.  You can get far, far better sound for a small fraction of the cost (but you may not get the nice "form" or architectural aesthetic -- although I'd argue nice tube equipment in a darker room is pretty sexy!).

post #6 of 31
I've got an old Beomaster 2400 in storage. Nothing groundbreaking electronically, but it is well made and beautiful. Eventually, I'll hang it on the wall and feed it with a DAC into audiophile speakers.

B&O is expensive and you can get excellent gear for less. However, if you want some beautiful gear that holds up, get some used B&O gear. A lot of it is affordable and still looks stunning 20 or 30 years out.
post #7 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Erik View Post

I've got an old Beomaster 2400 in storage. Nothing groundbreaking electronically, but it is well made and beautiful. Eventually, I'll hang it on the wall and feed it with a DAC into audiophile speakers.

B&O is expensive and you can get excellent gear for less. However, if you want some beautiful gear that holds up, get some used B&O gear. A lot of it is affordable and still looks stunning 20 or 30 years out.


 

Absolutely! I found an old B&O turntable in an old shop a short while ago, and it looked simply fantastic, even though it was easily 20 to 30 years old.

I do remember, however, to listen to a complete 5.1 system from them and thought it sounded good but not fantastic, and it retailed for 70 thousand dollars (mind you, this is the land of insane taxes). You can easily get a much better system for that sort of money, but probably none that comes close in looks and style.

post #8 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by naike View Post

People keep telling me this is the best, overall I mean.

But somehow I doubt that, and I've already heard B&O having an "apple" like image in the audiophile world?

 

Any thoughts?



There are already 2 threads in this forum dealing with B&O, its style, value and quality.  Try the search.

post #9 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by edstrelow View Post


There are already 2 threads in this forum dealing with B&O, its style, value and quality.  Try the search.


How exactly does it hurt you if someone starts a third thread?

post #10 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by InnerSpace View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by edstrelow View Post


There are already 2 threads in this forum dealing with B&O, its style, value and quality.  Try the search.


How exactly does it hurt you if someone starts a third thread?

 

 

 

 

 

So how many duplicate threads do you think is too many?

 

 


Edited by edstrelow - 12/3/10 at 8:53pm
post #11 of 31

I thouight b&o was like European Bose?

post #12 of 31

I have found that B&O equipment, while expensive, is usually exceptional - you get what you pay for (and that includes the steep price on their high end equipment)

 

Another reason B&O's stuff is so high is because, I believe, most of it is built pretty custom-like, in turn, because its not mass-produced, the price is very high

post #13 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Antony6555 View Post

I thouight b&o was like European Bose?


No, but yes ... no, there's no comparison at all between B&O's build quality and Bose's - B&O is genuinely high quality, very meticulous, very beautiful, and Bose is thrown together very cynically in the cheapest plants on earth.

 

And no, B&O's SQ is much better, even though it's not perfect in an audiophile sense ...

 

Because yes, I believe that both B&O and Bose trade on a psychoacoustic peculiarity, in that a small but significant proportion of people believe that audio "should" sound a little chesty.  It's as if there's a strand of audio DNA in people that comes from the earliest days of the mass market, which was dominated by big table radios in the 1920s and 1930s.  I remember my grandparents' house, with the warm, chesty thud of their radio ... my mother grew up with it, and to this day she thinks that's the ideal SQ for gear to have.  She's exactly the market that both Bose and B&O aim for, and I think they tailor their sound in that direction - Bose much more so, but it's there in B&O, too.

post #14 of 31

To appreciate the prices for B&O gear, you have to be ready to be paying a premium for the design portion of the components.  I find there are 3 versions of fitting gear into your living space:

 

1) No care for looks, just the best performance and/or price.  Most stereo listening rooms fit into this category, and some home entertainment systems.

2) Blend / Hide the gear in a more formal space - all the in wall speakers, A/V closets, etc.  This category is mostly for home entertainment systems in either designated rooms, or hidden in a living room or den.

3) Gear that is part of the decoration of the space (notably contemporary interiors in the case of B&O)  This gear is not specifically chosen for the sound quality or features, but rather for the appearance, and build quality.

 

When you are paying to decorate, you are paying money according to your desires, and budget.  Some people buy gear only for sound, and don't worry about the looks, but there are those that are paying for looks.

 

As stated previously, this gear is not terrible gear, but it has another point.  With my wife, I get to have my listening room look however I choose, but the movie system in the den has to be mostly hidden, or at least be subdued, and specifically have no wires showing.

 

As long as you take into consideration what B&Os point is in making/marketing this gear, it makes sense, and they have been around for several decades now, they are not a flash in the pan.  As I recall, they pretty much pioneered the class D amplifier (specifically the ICE module) to be able to fit a lot of watts to power small speakers in small (pretty) enclosures.

 

Is the price rather high for the sound quality? Yes.  But, people who choose B&O have another set of factors in consideration, a consideration that usually has little place here on head-fi.

post #15 of 31

I have some hard-won advice:

 

Used B&O gear, in my experience, comes DOA.  Not all, but most.

 

B&O dealers only service current production.  Read that again, and think the consequences through.

 

I currently own no B&O gear, having traded my 4004 TT off at a loss.

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