Bose Wave® Music System Review

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  • Sound Quality

  • Features

  • Value For Money

Timmoss.'s review of Bose Wave® Music System

★★☆☆☆
Bose Wave® Music System

“My wife recieved a mail out for this thing, and...”

Written on: 25/07/2003 by Timmoss. (1 review written)

Good Points
Small, looks good

Bad Points
Sound quality, Price, poor value for money.

General Comments
My wife recieved a mail out for this thing, and decided to relegate the HiFi to the loft in order to tidy up the sitting room. The Bose arrived and sits in the sitting room looking tidy (the room does look a lot better. But the promises of beautiful clear sound have deffinately not been realised. The bass is muddy and one-note in character, the top end is hard and there is little depth to the sound, acoustic, single instrument recording such as solo piano or harp are listenable, but recordings such as The Orbs Little Fluffy Clouds and The Verves Weeping Willow where the bass either plays the melody or is used as a pad sound awful, it would be nice if Bose made a provision for turning off the loudness control they have buit in.

To be fair, for its size it is quite impressive, and it makes a very nice clock radio, but it is no substitute for a similarly priced HiFi system. I definately do not recommend this thing.

  • Value For Money

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Dr Rythm's Response to 118883_Timmoss.'s Review

Written on: 09/10/2003

It may not sound as good as a simililary priced hi-fi system but isn't that missing the point? Does it sound better than any other machine of the same physical size? If the answer is yes than that is what you have paid for.

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Zakezuke's Response to 118883_Timmoss.'s Review

Written on: 03/12/2004

The Bose Wave Radio/CD was obsolete in 2003 because it didn’t even offer the ability to play mp3. I don't see it on the Bose website any more but they do offer the Wave Music System for $500. Near as I can estimate from the website, it doesn’t CD / MP3 text nor radio station information (RDS). This is a feature you look for if you want your unit to display what song is currently playing. Neither the Bose Wave Radio/CD nor the Wave Music System has a subwoofer on board. The "SoundWorks" Radio CD 740 does.
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<br>Bose offers a 30 day risk-free trial according to the website. Cambridge SoundWorks offers a 45 day risk-free trial. The "SoundWorks" Radio CD 740 offers front and back aux jacks out of the box which are controlled by the remote. Let’s face it… if you are going to plop down as much as $500 on a stereo you are also going to have an iPod or other handheld music player. Bose offers only the one aux jack but offers a pedestal with three jacks for $100, none can be selected on the remote and no front input jack.
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<br>If you are going to advocate buying the Bose unit exclusively because you can return it if you don’t like it, why not order both? The "SoundWorks" Radio CD 740 is $300 and still offers more features than the newly released Wave Music System. Given the price tag, you can’t afford not to compare the Bose unit with something else. This way if someone claims you have an “acoustically bad room” you can honestly say you picked the unit that sounds best in your particular acoustically bad room. And who knows, there might be a good reason some people say, “No highs, no lows, it must be Bose.”
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<br>Neither unit supports DVD in upon them selves. Let’s face it, anyone considering either unit wants to save space. What better way to save space than putting all your music on a single DVD disk? One side of a single layer DVD holds 7.4 times more than a CD. Dual layer offers about 14 times more. Assuming you can fit 6 full albums on a single CD using .mp3 this works out to be 42 to 84 albums on a single DVD.
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<br>CDs will likely not become obsolete. Home CD-players are as DVD players do CDs very well. Why spend the extra money when you already own a CD player in the form of a DVD player. Consider saving by just buying the Radio edition and plug it into your existing DVD player. No extra space and you get to hear your DVDs on something other than TV speakers. The old Bose Wave radio is $350 on the website. Cambridge Soundworks offers both the model 730 without CD, or the model 88CD with CD for $200 presently. Either way you save money in the short term, and will save money when you upgrade to the latest and greatest DVD player.
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<br>But if you are looking for second unit for the Den by all means get one with a CD player.
<br>$500 Bose Wave music system (R) CD and MP3 support 1 aux jack 30 day risk-free
<br>$350 Bose Wave Radio (R) No CD 1 aux jack 30 day risk free
<br>$300 Cambridge "SoundWorks" Radio CD 740. CD/MP3 subwoofer front/rear jacks and song ID 45 day risk-free
<br>$200 Cambridge SoundWorks 88CD CD only subwoofer front/rear jacks 45 day risk-free
<br>$200 SoundWorks Radio 730 no CD subwoofer front/rear jacks song ID 45 day risk-free

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Bapowley's Response to 118883_Timmoss.'s Review

Written on: 02/12/2004

Got to agree with DGL, if the product was as bad as the first reviewer said just send it back. I'm more than happy - as for the comment about the bass I play Ladysmith Black Mambazo on it and you could say there is some bass in their music and it is superb - I can only assume that someone has an acoustically bad room - in my lounge it is superb. It has now been moved to my bedroom and is even better.

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Zakezuke's Response to 118883_Timmoss.'s Review

Written on: 16/01/2004

Additional....
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<br>If after my speech regarding jacking an amp/reciever and speakers into your existing DVD player to play CDs over speakers (no increase if footprint if you stack), perhaps I have another product for you to look at. It was a challange to find something that had the same footprint and relative size of the Bose wave radio w/CD without wires.
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<br>http://www.cambridgesoundworks.com/store/category.cgi?category=aud_radio&item=c174rczzz
<br> Cambridge SoundWorks "SoundWorks" Radio CD 740
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<br>I've only seen this once, but I was most impressed. Unlike the Bose Wave Radio, it has a subwoofer onboard, and says it supports mp3 on CD-r / CD-rw, RDS tags so you can see what song is playing on the radio or MP3, Front and rear auxiliary inputs/outputs (the wave radio only has back input out put, three with the pedestal). I have not played them side by side, so I won't cover the issue of acustics.
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<br>I believe that the design comes from the late Henry Kloss, my facts on that mater are limited to the older model with his name on it. If you talk to any person who's big on seperates, they'll know the names Acoustic Research, KLH Research and Development Corp., and Advent. [http://www.cambridgesoundworks.com/store/category.cgi?category=about_release39]
<br>I've owned two pieces he designed, the Advent loudspeaker, and two pairs of KLH model seventeen [circa 1966]. The Advents are still in service 100%, one pair of KLH needs a replacement cap (item bought for pennies), the other pair still 100% dispite being 35 years old. In otherwords, history has taught me to respect this man's design ability.
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<br>The Cambridge SoundWorks Radio CD 740 4 15/16" H X 14" W X 9 7/8" D 12 lbs.
<br>about usd $400 from the US website 219.166 GBP
<br>As low as US $300 from some sites for the older Henry Kloss model 88CD
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<br>Bose measures 4 3/8"H x 14"W x 8 1/2"D • (11.1 x 35.6 x 21.6 cm) 7.4lbs 3.4 kg. about usd $500 from the US website 273.976 GBP
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<br>The bose is slightly smaller without the pedestal and gives you 3 inputs, one output. With the pedestal it is slightly taller then then Cambridge SoundWorks Radio /cd
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<br>The Cambridge SoundWorks would need a switchbox if you need more two inputs.
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<br>If you are considering the Bose, do take the time to at least consider the Cambridge SoundWorks Radio CD 740 as well. More features, sub woofer, and slightly cheeper. In 1965, the KLH corp claimed to spend less then 1% in advertising, I suspect it's the came for Cambridge Soundworks and may account for the lower price.

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Zakezuke's Response to 118883_Timmoss.'s Review

Written on: 25/12/2003

Timmoss, the parent post, is really right on the money with his review. My first track on the Bose Wave Radio / CD was Simon and Garfunkle Cinselia and it seemed a bit one dimentional. I was NOT pleased to say the least. Roger Whitewater Calypso wasn't so bad with the vocals, but again... it sounded muffled.
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<br>dr rythm, a responce has a valid question... can one find something of similar size and get superior quality? I personaly feel that this is a yes. In fact, my test setup was with a sub $30 amp, a Cyberacustics PC speaker set... and subwoofer. With it's native speakers, which are just a pair of 2 inch tweeters I enjoyed better clarity with both a portable CD player, as well as direct from my PC. With a pair of pretty low end Jenson bookshelf two way speaker, roughly double the footprint, I was more pleased. With a pair of vintage small Ampex at roughly triple the footprint as the Bose wave radio... the sub $30.00 cheepo PC amp totally out peformed the Bose wave radio. But in all fairness one must consider the size.... so the native Cyber Acustic speakers with it's sub and amp, and a portable CD player on top offered superior sound even when the speakers were in the same relative position as the bose. I have not done a side by side by with some newer bookshelf single disk CD players, nor with some sub $100 boomboxes... but I feel the result would be the same.
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<br>DGL's responce I must disagree with, esp the acoustically challenged. Anything with more then one instrument that I listened to I found that I couldn't resolve some of the more subtle strums.
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<br>susabellasaspirella's responce I find to be the best of the pack with the only exception of the parent, dispite what I consider a moderatly sexist stance (jargon most of you boys spout about when it comes to hi-fi). While I am male, i'm not an audiophile in the true sence of the word, nor do I feel all men are tim allen. I don't know the genders of posters, nor does it mater unless I plan to use pronouns. The comment "this is more that made up for by the fact that there are not metres of cable wrapped around the living room" is most valid. While I happen to have metres of cable wraped via the walls, I can understand the feelings of some people thinking that cable on the floor looks sloppy and wish to prevent tripping on it and knocking down their audio hardware, and wall runs can be most difficult. This is a very valid reason to consider the Bose wave radio. While I feel it's quality leaves something to be desired, and a wise person would consider other options, this is a very valid design consideration. I will even concur with the statement that the parent is a purest, though I would choose the word picky. My vote would go with detached speakers for channel seperation, and i'd vote for wires (though in the walls). The most valid point here is "huge separates and speakers stands lying around" If placed in a similar situation where the significant other wishes more compact, i'd propose small wall mounted speakers running to the seperates, which would include PC, tape, vinyl player, DVD/CD/VCR. If still too bulky with all that and smalish speakers, i'd ditch the physical media players, rip all the music onto the PC, and put the library in the loft for safe keeping. If that's still too much space, i'd consider a similar cost home theater system as they provide better bang for the buck if greater in physical volume. While I can not expect everyone to see it my way, I would consider digital convergency to save volume over getting a bose wave radio cd.
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<br>The primary reason I disagree personaly with the seperates idea is the fact that the Bose wave radio / cd is only radio and CD, so that only covers two things you'll find in a stereo stack. I consider the cable box, the VCR, DVD/CD player all also to be seperates and should be placed in the stereo stack. I'm going to have a stack of stuff anyway... why not just add a reciever with radio onboard, jack all your stuff, hide the cables behind your stack, and declare victory.

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Susabellasaspirella's Response to 118883_Timmoss.'s Review

Written on: 30/11/2003

We have owned our Bose CD Wave for around five years and think it is wonderful. As a non-techie girl I have no idea of all the jargon most of you boys spout about when it comes to hi-fi but the Bose has never let us down whatever type of music we listen to -- and we have quite varied tastes. My husband, who loves his expensive separates was quite sceptical when I bought the Bose for him but thinks is just as fantastic as I do and if there is any loss of sound quality (which I don't there there is) this is more that made up for by the fact that there are not metres of cable wrapped around the living room and huge separates and speakers stands lying around. I think the original reviewer is just trying to be a purist and is upset that his very sensible wife put his monolith in the loft.

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Dgl's Response to 118883_Timmoss.'s Review

Written on: 26/11/2003

I can only think that "timmoss" is acoustically challenged. The Bose Wave Radio/CD is an absolute marvel and the depth and clarity of the sound is quite remarkable for a unit of it's size.
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<br>The review above is utter rubbish and I urge you to find out for your self as BOSE offer a 30 day money back guarantee with no strings attached.

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