Why Do Audiophiles Hate Bose?

2

2channel lover

Audioholic General
Ratings
560
#61
Hate is a really strong word and not really in play for me, I just don't think most of their speaker products are worth the money they're asking..

It's been close to over 20 yrs now, but when I bought my B&W speakers (another well branded company) I actually asked about a pair of 901s and the salesman kind of snickered a bit...you really don't want a pair of 901s and I'll show you why. For the next 30 minutes I got a down and dirty on why Bose speakers are not in the same class as B&W...drivers, cabinets, crossovers, etc. He said if you have time today, take the same demo CD you have heard here and go over to XYZ store...they have 901s on the floor and let me know what you think.

I did as he asked and I bought a pair a B&W 804m a week later....just no comparison.

While I will probably never own a pair of Bose speakers, there are some Bose products I think are actually pretty good...I just bought the wife a pair of Soundlink Headphones. They don't sound as good as my Hifiman cans but they sound good enough. They can connect via bluetooth or wired so she can use these for everything from watching TV (while I sleep),to listening to her ipad. One of their best features...comfort, she works from home 2 days a week and on the phone probably 50% of the day...she can wear these for several hours with taking them off.
 
A

andyblackcat

Audioholic General
Ratings
401 2 98
#62
Bose is just like Dyson, Sharper Image and others who promote their products as high end and price them as such. In reality they preform just a little better than the cheapest stuff. at least that’s the way I see it.

I had 901s and thought they were OK but that was long ago when I had very little to compare it to.
I use a Hoover vacuum cleaner it does the suction okay for what was it paid for it £50 under I think its small size enough for around the home. Its 85db the frequency of the sound it makes is nowhere near deafening like the other brand I used that was 109db with steep 400Hz peak that made me dizzy and earplugs didn't help much. I buy another Hoover when it breaks down. I find Dyson way too expensive. I know vacuum cleaners are inefficient in the electrical side that I don't think about. I'd buy another Hoover Spritz Cylinder Vacuum Cleaner, 1.5 Litre, 850 Watts.

11053512_10153255445530149_4783593228248021546_n.jpg


Now I know Bose don't publish specs I wonder if Dyson does?
11011885_10153255404125149_7455599105062580107_n.jpg

I had the mic and RTA TrueRTA running to see what the Hoover frequency response was like.
 
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panteragstk

panteragstk

Audioholic Samurai
Ratings
1,183 6 1
#63
I don't hate Bose, I just try to inform people that their products aren't worth the money for all the reasons stated earlier.

When I sold A/V people would always say how good the Bose demos sound. I always told them "well, it should sound good in a 10 square foot space since it doesn't have to do much". That usually got them to think a bit, but it still sounded "good" to them.

One day a customer returned a Bose 5.1 system. The one with the dual cubes for each channel. We're supposed to send them back to Bose, but my manager decided to set it up in the demo room so we could A/B it with the Klipsch setup we had.

People would go in after talking to me about the 10 square foot demo so I could show them what it would sound like in room. They usually came away thinking it was pretty good. Then we'd demo the Klipsch setup. Their mind instantly changed, and this wasn't even the Reference series. I'll admit for movies the Klipsch setup did sound pretty good for movies. Towers in the front with a 12" sub and dipole for the surrounds.

General consensus in our store was "Bose sucks for the price" which is why my manager was cool with it. Bose wasn't. Their rep came to our store and was PISSED that we had done a "non-approved" demo. Proved our point though...
 
BoredSysAdmin

BoredSysAdmin

Audioholic Overlord
Ratings
5,719 22 38
#64
I don't hate Bose, I just try to inform people that their products aren't worth the money for all the reasons stated earlier.

When I sold A/V people would always say how good the Bose demos sound. I always told them "well, it should sound good in a 10 square foot space since it doesn't have to do much". That usually got them to think a bit, but it still sounded "good" to them.

One day a customer returned a Bose 5.1 system. The one with the dual cubes for each channel. We're supposed to send them back to Bose, but my manager decided to set it up in the demo room so we could A/B it with the Klipsch setup we had.

People would go in after talking to me about the 10 square foot demo so I could show them what it would sound like in room. They usually came away thinking it was pretty good. Then we'd demo the Klipsch setup. Their mind instantly changed, and this wasn't even the Reference series. I'll admit for movies the Klipsch setup did sound pretty good for movies. Towers in the front with a 12" sub and dipole for the surrounds.

General consensus in our store was "Bose sucks for the price" which is why my manager was cool with it. Bose wasn't. Their rep came to our store and was PISSED that we had done a "non-approved" demo. Proved our point though...
I'm curious how that demo ended up after rep visit
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Overlord
Ratings
2,995 9 12
#65
my car has a bose system. It's terrible. I intend to replace it as soon as I can.
Most of the Bose car systems I heard when I was doing car stereo weren't really bad, they just didn't have much output. Fortunately, the signal from the head unit was usable for driving other equipment, so we were able to make the system sound MUCH better. This was mostly late-1990s Corvettes, though.
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Overlord
Ratings
2,995 9 12
#66
I use a Hoover vacuum cleaner it does the suction okay for what was it paid for it £50 under I think its small size enough for around the home. Its 85db the frequency of the sound it makes is nowhere near deafening like the other brand I used that was 109db with steep 400Hz peak that made me dizzy and earplugs didn't help much. I buy another Hoover when it breaks down. I find Dyson way too expensive. I know vacuum cleaners are inefficient in the electrical side that I don't think about. I'd buy another Hoover Spritz Cylinder Vacuum Cleaner, 1.5 Litre, 850 Watts.

Now I know Bose don't publish specs I wonder if Dyson does?

I had the mic and RTA TrueRTA running to see what the Hoover frequency response was like.
I bought a new vac because the one I had been using, which is the one I mentioned before, was just old and tired & didn't have any attachments, so I went to the closest Sears store to look for the model I have seen several cleaning services using. They had it on sale, but only for the one that's an ugly light green. Not so ugly that it kept me from paying $79.95 vs $229 for the other colors, though. Has a HEPA filter as well as a bag and the thing picks up a lot, even if the carpet looks clean.
 
O

olc

Enthusiast
Ratings
1
#67
In the early Seventies, I had an audio store, that carried from budget entry level stuff (university town) to Audio Research. I loved Bose. They marketed 901s like crazy, because that what Bose is good at and people walked in or called asking for Bose so we got the line. We sold none. We demoed them and said they are $500 and need a lot of power so a pricey receiver. Then we demoed Large Advent speakers and jaws dropped, The universal comment was that the Advents were a lot better so how much more do they cost? The answer was $178 and a cheaper receiver. I love Bose because they sold tens of thousands of dollars worth of systems for us. And yes we sold the Bose to someone who insisted on it. We dropped Bose and went out and paid retail for another pair for demo.

Later I had Bose in several cars because I couldn't get the model I wanted without it. I listened to it to see if it was good enough just to use in the car and then drove to a car stereo dealer to get it replaced.

Bose is great at hype and marketing, but he bottom line is it doesn't sound good at all, and the prices for plastic basket, paper cone speakers stamped made in China is simply a rip off. It's easy to get better sound than Bose, and for a huge amount less.
 
O

olc

Enthusiast
Ratings
1
#68
I use a Hoover vacuum cleaner it does the suction okay for what was it paid for it £50 under I think its small size enough for around the home. Its 85db the frequency of the sound it makes is nowhere near deafening like the other brand I used that was 109db with steep 400Hz peak that made me dizzy and earplugs didn't help much. I buy another Hoover when it breaks down. I find Dyson way too expensive. I know vacuum cleaners are inefficient in the electrical side that I don't think about. I'd buy another Hoover Spritz Cylinder Vacuum Cleaner, 1.5 Litre, 850 Watts.


Now I know Bose don't publish specs I wonder if Dyson does?

I went to check out Dyson at the local shop that sells vacuums and services most brands. They said that don't sell them or service them because they break and are very hard to fix. Other vacuum shops concurred. One said it wa the Bose of vaccums.
 
JerryLove

JerryLove

Audioholic Samurai
Ratings
661 1
#69
I went to check out Dyson at the local shop that sells vacuums and services most brands. They said that don't sell them or service them because they break and are very hard to fix. Other vacuum shops concurred. One said it wa the Bose of vaccums.
I had that position at one point.

At least their cordless vacs, which are the ones I looked into, appear to actually out-perform their competition. They are "we are different" like Bose, and feel overpriced like Bose, but don't seem to meet the "cheaply made" like Bose, nor the "inferior to their competitors". In that regard they seem more like Monster.

Why don't audiophiles like Bose? Depends on the audiophile. Either they are too popular (not elite enough: from the $500-cable audiophile),or they are too popular (from the hipster audiophile),They are too poorly constructed (aesthetic audiophile),or they color sound and make false claims, and are generally cheaply built (empiricist).

I definitely think Audioholic's comparison to Rolex was way off base. Even if overhyped or overpriced, Rolex is an incredibly well-made timepiece. The clear audio-equivalent is McIntosh.
 
Bucknekked

Bucknekked

Audioholic Field Marshall
Ratings
1,293 7 34
#70
I definitely think Audioholic's comparison to Rolex was way off base. Even if overhyped or overpriced, Rolex is an incredibly well-made timepiece. The clear audio-equivalent is McIntosh.
Bose compared to a Rolex? Nope. That doesn't work for me. Owned several Rolex and they are indeed excellent timepieces . They hold their value and even horologists that have very high and snooty standards will give Rolex its due. The compare with McIntosh is pretty good.

There's a common thread that runs throughout these last 4 pages of posts. Many of us learned to dislike Bose from others in the hobby and not from our own experience. Then, when experience with the product came along, we were all set and ready to dislike them. And we did dislike them. The guys with the prior experience were right: you can buy better sound for less money.

The WAF factor is pretty extreme with Bose however. I don't have any stats, but, I have to believe the number of Bose systems that go out the door correlates directly with how many wives walk in the door.
 
Ridire Fáin

Ridire Fáin

Audioholic Intern
Ratings
12 1
#73
Bose is one of most recognized brands in the world. Ask anyone on the street who they think makes the best audio products, and you will likely hear Bose as their answer. So why is it that most audiophiles HATE Bose? This YouTube attempts to answer that question to give you a better perspective on the company and people’s expectations of them. We go over the history of their products and "research" discussing everything from their home speakers, headphones, soundbars and more...


Tell us your thoughts on Bose and if you own any of their products.
I do not mind them. To my ear the sound is fairly clean and unobjectionable. That is their point, hide in room and be boring as milk toast. Small size, high potential for spousal acceptance, not much of a hassle to set up.

IMHO the reason they are so popular is most people are not interested in something that faithfully reproduces sound, but are quick and easy to use. Their genius is, that they require so little effort to set up and get going, that people consistently choose them over much better sounding and less costly systems.
 
VonMagnum

VonMagnum

Audioholic
Ratings
129 1 41
#74
It's not that I find their products terrible, it's more like they tend to be overpriced for what you get compared to other (often better) brands. (e.g. The wave radio a family member bought sounds 'good' for its size, but then it's pretty pricey for a freaking clock radio and a set of Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 speakers connected to an Airport Express blows the pants off it for half the price). There's also nothing at the top I'd consider for a stereo or home theater setup.
 
davidscott

davidscott

Full Audioholic
Ratings
165
#75
In the early Seventies, I had an audio store, that carried from budget entry level stuff (university town) to Audio Research. I loved Bose. They marketed 901s like crazy, because that what Bose is good at and people walked in or called asking for Bose so we got the line. We sold none. We demoed them and said they are $500 and need a lot of power so a pricey receiver. Then we demoed Large Advent speakers and jaws dropped, The universal comment was that the Advents were a lot better so how much more do they cost? The answer was $178 and a cheaper receiver. I love Bose because they sold tens of thousands of dollars worth of systems for us. And yes we sold the Bose to someone who insisted on it. We dropped Bose and went out and paid retail for another pair for demo.

Later I had Bose in several cars because I couldn't get the model I wanted without it. I listened to it to see if it was good enough just to use in the car and then drove to a car stereo dealer to get it replaced.

Bose is great at hype and marketing, but he bottom line is it doesn't sound good at all, and the prices for plastic basket, paper cone speakers stamped made in China is simply a rip off. It's easy to get better sound than Bose, and for a huge amount less.
Yeah I got into audio back in the late 70s while in the USAF. I had a Kenwood 40wpc amp with some unknown Electro Voice 3 way 12 inch speakers. All the audio mags at the time praised the 901s. When I moved back home I visited a friend who had at the time a system with 4 large Magnepans run through a GAS high powered amp with very good source components. Long story short he told me forget the 901s (he called them birdcages) and buy some New Advents (saving big money). I did and was very glad I did.
 
killdozzer

killdozzer

Audioholic General
Ratings
631 6 11
#76
This is my "Bose setting"! ;);)
1551695201217.png


And really, as warm as a LCD screen showing a recording of a fireplace.:D
 
markw

markw

Audioholic Overlord
Ratings
3,707 5 160
#79
I think they resent the fact that so many people are willing to gladly spend big bucks on a stylish, small, and simple to operate system that puts out decent, but not outstanding. sound. ...and they love them!
 
Sef_Makaro

Sef_Makaro

Audioholic
Ratings
60 1
#80
I think Bose puts out great products for the people they target, sadly that isn’t likely to be anyone who frequents forums like this one. When all you’ve heard is tv speakers and stock audio systems in cars, Bose sounds fairly good. Their headphones seem pretty good and their radio sounds decent for the size.

That said, I hate Bose because I once bought an Acoustimass 10 system and thought it sounded “off” immediately. I tried to convince myself it sounded good because I didn’t want to admit I wasted money. As many have said, it’s missing highs and lows. Plus there’s a gap between the bass module and cubes. The lack of highs I could get over but not the lows. It never felt like it had any real authority in the bass department. The worst part was how it sounded like half the vocals were coming out of the bass module which I had stashed in the corner.

I won’t ever tell anyone they’re wrong if they like Bose but I will encourage them to try out other speakers.

On the bright side, I was able to sell that set for 80% of what I bought them for so I could reinvest it new speakers. Hearing the difference between the Bose I sold and the Polks I bought started me down the road of pursuing better audio. I guess you can call Bose my gateway drug.
 

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