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Are Bose speakers good? - Page 2

post #16 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mischif View Post

 

 If you see a graph of the FR it drops at 250hz and well below 20khz and still manage to sound shimmery and bloated at the same time :)

 

Must have been the room mode/s in his apartment. Now that I think about it, since his idea of a car audio set-up was to put two JLW6V1's in the trunk powered by a 1,000w JL amplifier, a touchscreen receiver, and stock front speakers, that's probably how he liked the sound when it was set-up (sub smack next to the wall, etc).

post #17 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by daniel521 View Post

I know their headphones aren't good but are their speakers good? Im looking for a good surround sound equipment to put in my room. If bose isn't good, which one should I get? (I heard dolby is pretty good)

How much are you looking to spend here? For the $2000-$4000 that a Bose Lifestyle system will run you, you can probably do better (but we'll get to that), but for the $200-$400 that their stereo speakers cost, especially if space is at a premium, you're probably not going to find much better without spending substantially more time (and as small speakers go, Bose does sit above all of the clash-makers like Klipsch (Micro-Tractix is horrible), and various blatant rip-offs of Bose/Klipsch designs (Jamo, Polk, Infinity, etc)).

As far as doing good or bad goes - it depends on the room the speakers are going into. A lot of claims related to sound quality of speakers and the equipment behind them usually ignore that by and large, the LARGEST CONTRIBUTING FACTOR to how a speaker system sounds is the room it is placed within, and how the speakers are placed in the room. This doesn't mean buy crap gear, but it does mean that you need to spend some time considering speakers relative to your room and placement options. If you have a very small room and cannot place floor-standing towers appropriately, they are a bad idea, for example. If you have a very large room, any "small speakers" will probably be a bad idea. Etc.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GREQ View Post

Speakers being good or not is rather subjective as every ear and peoples needs are different - Bose have made a market for super tiny speaker systems with a "wow" sound (a lot of shiny treble and PHAT bass) - but for audio quality (bigger uglier sized systems included) you can do better for the money.

I would very strongly disagree with this. Apart from the re-enforced LMS equipment that they sell for churches and shopping malls, most of their systems run fairly lean on the low-end, and don't have tons of top end glare (the same cannot be said for many cheap horn speakers, unfortunately). I'm not saying they're the best ever, but this sounds like blatant stereotyping.
Quote:
Dolby is just a company that is an audio industry technology 'standard' like THX, which also has a rating system of audio quality. I don't think they actually produce their own loudspeakers. 

Dolby and THX are nothing alike. Dolby is a research lab/company that develops and markets encoding/decoding products as well as other processing and enhancement suites. THX develops and publishes calibration standards and manufacturing guidelines for professional and consumer cinema equipment. Dolby is not a "standard" - it's a series of data formats; THX as a standard is generally impossible to truly meet in the consumer space (there are no turn-key solutions).
Quote:
I think even a cheap set of Creative/Logitech 5.1 computer speakers can sound more neutral than a low end bose system, but I wouldn't get those either. 

I would strongly disagree here as well. It's been a few years since Creative has released a truly high-end multi-channel setup, and their current high end speakers look like clones of the Bose Companion systems - Logitech equipment is notorious for muddy boom-boom midbass and zero extension (mostly because most of their "subwoofers" use 4-6" drivers hidden behind a big passive radiator with a massively over-rated amplifier).

 
Quote:
If money is no object then I'd look into getting a decent 5.1 or 7.1 AV receiver amp (good 2nd hand ones can be had for less than 100 euros) and pair them up with a half decent set of speakers like Wharfedale DIamond 10 and an SW150 subwoofer. That'd be a good entry level cinema system - anything cheaper just isn't 'audiophile' wink_face.gif

If money is truly no object, contact a CI and tell them you want a theater that will meet JBL Synthesis Platinum (http://www.jblsynthesis.com/Info/Story/51) and (consequently) pass THX Ultra2 with ISF calibrated video. Expect to start at around a half million dollars and include new construction in the budget accordingly.

More realistically - as I said above, if we're talking the $2000-$4000 Bose HTIBs, I would steer elsewhere, but if we're just talking the straight speakers, depending on the room and placement, it can work pretty well. But that's how I feel about most HTIBs - they all fall flat somewhere. So I agree with your argument up to a point - separate AV equipment is probably the best performance/price offering, but Bose speakers may be a realistic consideration (depending on personal tastes and room size/placement). To be completely honest, many Bose speakers stay far closer to the ideal way we'd like to see speakers designed than a lot of more esoteric audiophile designs (e.g. wrt phase interference/propagation, axial response, MR, etc).

Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post

Dolby is a set of specifications standards for A/V but certification doesn't mean every gear will have the same performance and tolerances. In short, it's a bare minimum for "good" sound with a DVD or BluRay. It's good in so far as you think of "what kind of gear can't get a Dolby certification these says?!", but then again there's that (previously*) ridiculously low-price HLLY 5.1 decoder that can be paired with 5 monoblock T-amps, 5 speakers and an active sub and I don't think the HLLY (or maybe it does) doesn't have Dolby or THX certification. Plus surely the T-amps don't, but the one thread on it somewhere said it was an amazing and cheap (then, at least) combo.

Dolby is not a certification standard, and THX is not a certification standard that relates to quality or fidelity (per se - THX is an opt-in badging kind of thing, so only manufacturers who pay to participate will have badging, generally this only means manufacturers who care about home theater explicitly). Dolby is a set of container formats and encoding methods (and the company that developed them) that are licenced and required to support DVD and HDTV (the AC-3 codec), as well as Blu-ray and HD-DVD (the MLP and EAC-3 codecs) (among other things (Dolby also provided technology for VHS, Laserdisc, and provides IP for PC software and the cinema industry)), along with DTS (Coherent Acoustics and Master Audio). THX specifies baselines for cinema design in terms of A/V processing routes, power handling, and other design guidelines, but falls far short of "ideal" in the consumer segment in the name of aesthetics. Amplifier classing and other things are completely irrelevant in the face of THX certification (and many Class A, Class AB, and Class D amps hold equivalent THX certifications).

If a system has a Dolby or DTS badge, it absolutely will have the same abilities as any other device with that badge - it must meet the encoder specifications to wear that badge. However beyond the encoder, neither of those companies cares, and that's where you get into massive disparity between products and their abilities. Since Dolby Digital is required for DVD and HDTV support, it's probably one of the most common digital formats that decoders support, after PCM bitstreams.

More about Dolby, THX, and DTS:
http://www.dolby.com/us/en/about-us/who-we-are/landing.html
http://www.thx.com/consumer/thx-technology/thx-reference-level/
http://www.dts.com/consumers/sound-technology/home-surround-sound.aspx


Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post

Must have been the room mode/s in his apartment. Now that I think about it, since his idea of a car audio set-up was to put two JLW6V1's in the trunk powered by a 1,000w JL amplifier, a touchscreen receiver, and stock front speakers, that's probably how he liked the sound when it was set-up (sub smack next to the wall, etc).

Room design/layout and speaker placement are key here - there is no one-size fits all approach to placement or treatment either. Anyone who's selling you a prescriptive methodology is suspect.

Regarding the FR claims related to Bose speakers directly, I've seen some pretty wild variation in "published measurements" on the Internet, which leads me to believe nobody with a proper measurement environment has ever taken them to task. Simply close-mic'ing your speakers with an uncalibrated mic/preamp stack into your laptop is not suitable for making arguments about the system's actual response. rolleyes.gif

Again, I'm not trying to champion Bose as the best thing since sliced toast, I simply find the blind and misplaced vitriol directed at them (likely just because they're popular and their HTIB equipment tends to run on the very expensive side)...unsophisticated. Their "small speakers" are fairly suitable in a small space, like a bedroom, if placed well and hooked up appropriately (another fun thing I've observed over the years - most people who scream that Bose speakers are "shrill" and "over bright" or have "boomy bass" never even hook them up correctly!), but they are not suitable if your goal is a large multi-row custom theater with a huge projection screen and the ability to meet THX Ultra 2 or Dolby Reference output levels. For that, you need much more specialized equipment, and I'll point at Klipsch, Definitive, and so on (companies that design equipment for that very purpose). Most audiophile speakers will fall short of meeting that goal too, FWIW. HT and 2-channel serve different Gods.

So overall, my response to the OP would be: we need more information to give you informed advice (and it doesn't matter if that advice is coming from a subjective or objective camp).
post #18 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post

...

That's nice of you obobskivich to read the whole thread and reply to so many :)

A intresting read aswell I'd say.

 

Cheers!

post #19 of 29

Is Bose still doing that thing where they don't publish frequency response or other specs for their speakers?

post #20 of 29

find a nice set of yamaha 3 ways with fluid tweeters

post #21 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Penarin View Post

Is Bose still doing that thing where they don't publish frequency response or other specs for their speakers?

Bose publishes some FR data depending on the speaker, and provides specs to inform amplifier decision, but otherwise does not publish huge sheets of numbers. I would also add that most manufacturers blatantly lie and cheat on those numbers, so it's not like you're missing anything (usually their "measured data" is at -10 or -20 dB or some other claptrap, or it's smoothed like 1/3rd or something, it's all fabricated and fantasy island numbers). There is nothing to be gained from being a specophile. redface.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by n3wdisea5e View Post

find a nice set of yamaha 3 ways with fluid tweeters

What is a "fluid tweeter" confused_face_2.gif And which Yamaha are you suggesting? (They have like 4-5 product lines from cheap junk to fancy kit).
post #22 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post

 I'm not saying they're the best ever, but this sounds like blatant stereotyping.

Please don't make my opinions seem less valuable. These are my opinions based on my experiences as a musician of over 15 years. I have yet to hear a bose system that I liked because nothing sounded real (good timbre). 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post

I would strongly disagree here as well. It's been a few years since Creative has released a truly high-end multi-channel setup, and their current high end speakers look like clones of the Bose Companion systems - Logitech equipment is notorious for muddy boom-boom midbass and zero extension (mostly because most of their "subwoofers" use 4-6" drivers hidden behind a big passive radiator with a massively over-rated amplifier).

 

It sounds like you've never heard their systems. If you take EQ and timbre into consideration, the multimedia systems win easily. Bose just add this horrible V-shaped EQ to everything making double basses sound like you've got your ear pressed up to the string and cymbals sound like they're made of rocket fuel powered tin foil. Even the cheap Creative stuff at least tries to make things sound more natural. I've heard a number of logitech subwoofers and their timbre is boomy and blouted on high volumes - but at the lowest volume their timbre is much more acceptable (to my ears) than comparable bose systems.

post #23 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by GREQ View Post

Please don't make my opinions seem less valuable. These are my opinions based on my experiences as a musician of over 15 years. I have yet to hear a bose system that I liked because nothing sounded real (good timbre).

I'm disagreeing with you, not attacking you.
Quote:
It sounds like you've never heard their systems. If you take EQ and timbre into consideration, the multimedia systems win easily. Bose just add this horrible V-shaped EQ to everything making double basses sound like you've got your ear pressed up to the string and cymbals sound like they're made of rocket fuel powered tin foil. Even the cheap Creative stuff at least tries to make things sound more natural. I've heard a number of logitech subwoofers and their timbre is boomy and blouted on high volumes - but at the lowest volume their timbre is much more acceptable (to my ears) than comparable bose systems.

Bose does not add a V-shaped EQ anywhere, nor do they have EQ in any of their equipment beyond the 901 system, which is a corrective EQ, not an exaggerative EQ (I'm not sure if ADAPTiQ applies a weird house curve, given that everyone else does, I would assume it's a safe bet though - but none of the (fairly unreliable, admittedly) measurements of Bose equipment agree with that claim, at all). And I've heard every production Bose speaker to date except the 10.x (but I can infer based on the 301 series) and early generation 901 and 601 models; this also includes the DSP controlled Panaray CI stuff, home cinema CI stuff, and all of the table radios. I'm familiar with the house sound. They do a lot of polar play and tend to concentrate on flat/clean mids with rolled highs and subdued ULF impact. It suits many domestic settings imho.

Placement and set-up is king though - again, a lot of Bose speakers are improperly deployed by end-users and the end result is usually a muddy, clashy, mess.

I also don't think there's really any "win" between speakers - there's just preference. You like it or you don't. I dislike the Logitech subwoofer approach, because they're all muddy boomboxes or bass bazookas, which is the result of under-sized drivers feeding large and cheap PRs in inadequately damped or designed boxes. The satellite speakers are generally fine though, same goes for Creative. The only multimedia speaker system that has ever had respectably smooth low end imho came from Monsoon; sometimes Altec would get lucky back in the day too, but on the whole, they're a mess.

The reason I say it sounds like blind stereotyping is that we have, in the same thread:

- Bose applies a nasty V-shape EQ to everything with boom-boom bass and shrill highs.

- No highs, no lows, must be a Bose.

It cannot be both ways.
Edited by obobskivich - 8/14/12 at 11:21pm
post #24 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post

The reason I say it sounds like blind stereotyping is that we have, in the same thread:
- Bose applies a nasty V-shape EQ to everything with boom-boom bass and shrill highs.
- No highs, no lows, must be a Bose.
It cannot be both ways.

 

You said what I wrote "sounds like blatant stereotyping" - perhaps better wording would have been "I think this sounds like... or it is in my opinion that..."

Otherwise on my end it came off as a strong attack on my words.

 

The second part about no highs and lows wasn't me!! frown.gif I think they've got bucket loads of both high and low.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post

Placement and set-up is king though - again, a lot of Bose speakers are improperly deployed by end-users and the end result is usually a muddy, clashy, mess.
Couldn't agree more. This is a big killer of most sound systems anywhere. 
post #25 of 29

Are Bose speakers good?

 

 

 

Ahhhhhhhhhhh...........................................................................................No

 

enough said.

post #26 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by GREQ View Post

You said what I wrote "sounds like blatant stereotyping" - perhaps better wording would have been "I think this sounds like... or it is in my opinion that..."
Otherwise on my end it came off as a strong attack on my words.

The second part about no highs and lows wasn't me!! frown.gif  I think they've got bucket loads of both high and low.

I was responding to about a dozen comments all at once. redface.gif

I'm also fairly curious about the "bucket loads of both high and low" - which models have you heard or is this in relation to? (Especially when you say Logitech is more neutral). "Back in the day" Bose would publish LF extension values for the Acoustimass units, and ~40hz was a common F3. The 901 have a stated F3 of something like 35hz in-room (and my understanding is that to even see this, you either want their old-school amp, or something equally beefy (their 450wpc rating isn't a joke)). Everything else is substantially less bassy (e.g. the 161 or 201 can sound thin in most rooms); I'm not sure I can see where you're coming from. On the top end, tmk the Twiddler drivers cannot break 16k without massive EQ assistance, and the 901 drivers do a little better (I've got models for those too!). Panaray and L1 can take your face off, but it's all DSP driven. They're really about the least offensive house sound I think you can find in a consistent product - they're dead in the water compared to something from Klipsch, Vienna, etc.
post #27 of 29

I was actually thinking about picking up a set of bose speakers - for that very reasons that they sell very small speakers that seem to have a pretty good sound. But after reading this thread I may be thinking other wise.

 

My parents have had the 321 system for years and its pretty great for movies - to sum that it up - small speakers that sound pretty good with a big sub woofer that is can be overpowering. It does the job for movies, I guess.

 

I have a computer set up that I use for all my media. Mostly watching movies in a smaller room and listening to music.

Any ideas on a better, much cheaper alternative to the bose 2.1 desktop system?

post #28 of 29

short answear is NO,  theyre humh crap is overhyped from their marketing, Ive heard decent sound from some bose  earphones and speakers but youll be paying too much for those prices you CAN get much better quality from other mftrs.

post #29 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by daniel521 View Post

I know their headphones aren't good but are their speakers good? Im looking for a good surround sound equipment to put in my room. If bose isn't good, which one should I get? (I heard dolby is pretty good)

Two of the worst sounding surround sound systems I ever heard were Bose.

As it relates to home theatre surround sound: Dolby is a surround sound encoding protocol.
Many DVDs and Blu Ray discs have the surround sound audio encoded in Dolby Digital.
A lot of discs are also encoded in another protocol known as DTS.
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