Powerful control with the Sound Touch app for your smartphone or tablet
The Bose SoundTouch 520 is our favorite small, portable home theater system because it offers the most features, sound quality, and value. And it's small enough to fit in most family rooms, offices, and bedrooms. It's also the only system in our test group that is compatible with Amazon's Alexa voice service, so you can control it with your voice. It's also the only system in our test group that includes Amazon's Prime Music service, and features six preset radio stations (including Amazon Music, iHeartRadio, and SiriusXM). The SoundTouch 520 also has Bluetooth, so you can play music from an Android or iOS device. And, like the rest of the SoundTouch family, it's voice-controlled. The SoundTouch 520's seven-inch, color touchscreen makes it easy to navigate through the system's features. And its rechargeable batteries provide up to 15 hours of playtime, so you can play it all day without worrying about plugging in a power cord. The SoundTouch 520's sound quality is top-notch, and the system's 2.1-channel speaker system does a great job of filling even large rooms with sound. The SoundTouch 520 has a 30-watt, five-band equalizer, so you can tailor the sound to your preferences. The system's two 1.5-inch tweeters and two 3.5-inch passive bass units produce crisp, clear sound, and the system's sound is impressively balanced, with crisp highs, deep, rich bass, and well-balanced midrange. The Bose SoundTouch 520's controls include four buttons on the front, a volume and power button on the right, and an Alexa button on the left. The Alexa button allows you to control the system using voice commands. The SoundTouch 520 supports Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, so you can connect it wirelessly to your home network or Bluetooth devices. The SoundTouch 520 is small enough to fit in most family rooms, offices, and bedrooms, and it's loud enough to fill most rooms with sound. The Bose SoundTouch 520 is a top-notch, portable home theater system.
Remote control: Compact TV speaker comes with a remote control that enables a dialogue mode to further enhance speech or add a bass boost for more depth.
The Bose TV Speaker is a surprisingly good-sounding small soundbar. Its 2.1-channel design uses 2 angled full-range drivers, and it's able to replicate the spacious, wide sound of a home theater system. The TV Speaker is compact and easy to place in front of your TV, and it sounds great for movies and video games. It also sounds great when playing music from your mobile device. (The TV Speaker is also compatible with Bose's SoundTouch wireless music system.) The TV Speaker's bass, however, is a little lacking, and it struggles to reproduce the rumble of explosions and gunshots. The TV Speaker is easy to set up, and it comes with an optical audio cable and HDMI cable for connecting to most TVs. The TV Speaker's remote control is easy to use, and it supports voice commands via Amazon Alexa. The TV Speaker's battery life is about 6 hours, depending on volume levels, and the speaker can be recharged via the USB port on its back. The TV Speaker's Bluetooth connection is fast, and it's compatible with most devices, including Apple and Android phones, as well as Amazon Alexa. The TV Speaker is also a great value, and it's our top pick for a small soundbar.
The best performing sound bar from Bose, featuring an unmatched combination of sophisticated design and exceptional sound
With stunning visuals, great sound, and support for Amazon Alexa voice control, the Bose 5.1 Home Theater System (Black) is a well-priced home theater package that delivers a rich audio experience. The Bose system delivers deep, rich bass, with truly impressive dynamic range. It also has excellent clarity and separation, and it's a pleasure to listen to. The Bose system's remote (the microphone and speaker are built-in) is simple to use, and it supports Alexa. The Bose 5.1 system offers WiFi connectivity and Bluetooth for playing media from your smartphone, tablet, or laptop. It is also compatible with AirPlay (requires an Apple TV), Spotify, Google Play Music, Pandora, and iHeartradio. The Bose system's alexa integration is also excellent, with voice control that's as responsive as it's ever gotten. The Bose 5.1 system also has USB, optical, and HDMI inputs for connecting media sources. The included subwoofer has dual ports, so you can connect a bass amp for extra power. The Bose 5.1 system's speakers are a substantial investment, but we think they're well worth it.
Single sound bar provides better sound quality compared to your TV.The Solo 5 TV sound system is an easy solution, with advanced technologies that deliver the clear audio your TV cant.
The Bose Solo 5 TV Soundbar is as good a soundbar as we've ever tested, with top-notch sound quality, great sound dispersion, and wireless bass. The Solo 5's audio performance is on par with that of the Polk PSW Series II Speakers (which we tested last year), and it's also the best sounding soundbar of this size that we've tested. The Solo 5's soundbar design is simple and elegant, and it's easy to set up. It's also reasonably priced, and it's among the few soundbars we tested that offers a Bluetooth music streaming option. The Solo 5's remote control is responsive and easy to use, and it's color coded to match the soundbar's color. The Solo 5's wireless remote control also has a built-in infrared receiver, so you can use it with radio frequency remotes. The Solo 5's soundbar's Bluetooth connectivity worked well with all of our smartphones and with an AppleTV, but we didn't test it with other devices. The Solo 5's optical and coaxial audio inputs worked well with all of our tested TVs, and the audio output was loud enough to fill our 25- by 25-foot listening room. The Solo 5's remote also includes an IR repeater, so you can use it to control your cable or satellite box. The Solo 5's wireless remote control also offers volume controls, a headphone jack, and a removable headphone jack cover. The Solo 5's remote has 12 infrared codes, so it should be compatible with most TVs. The Solo 5's remote also has audio mute buttons, so you can use it to control your TV's volume and mute button. You can also control your TV's power button on the Solo 5's remote. The Solo 5's wireless remote has a battery, and the battery lasts about 2.5 months. The Solo 5's remote also has a battery life indicator light, so you can tell when the remote's batteries are getting low. The Solo 5's remote has a power button. The Solo 5's remote has a reset button.
Sleek design: This wireless soundbar is just over 2" tall for low placement in front of your TV or wall mounting (wall brackets sold separately). Overall dimensions are 2.21" H x 26.58" W x 4.02" D.
The Bose Smart Soundbar 300 offers an outstanding combination of features and support. Not only does it deliver excellent sound quality, with rich, powerful bass, but it features built-in Amazon Alexa voice control, Apple AirPlay 2 and Spotify Connect, as well as Bluetooth connectivity for streaming your favorite music. The Bose Smart Soundbar is also compatible with other Bose products, so you can expand their sound quality and functionality. The Bose Music app makes it easy to set up, stream music, and control volume and other settings, and it's compatible with both Android and iOS devices. The Bose Smart Soundbar 300 is an attractive, high-quality soundbar with great sound, excellent features, and built-in Alexa support.
Simplified setup, with only a few connections to make. Ideal for small- to medium-sized rooms.
The Bose CineMate GS Series II home theater speaker system provides powerful, room-filling audio from your TV, game console, Blu-ray player, and other devices. The CineMate system connects directly to your TV and soundbar or AV receiver via a set of included cables. The included remote controls the system and most other connected components, and the system's microphones and speakers let you control your TV's volume. The sound quality was excellent, and the CineMate's speakers delivered clear, distortion-free sound even in larger rooms. The speakers are compact enough that they can easily be mounted on your wall, and the included wall-mount brackets make it easy to position them. The CineMate's digital signal processing (DSP) technology enhances the audio from your video sources, and the system's 2.1-channel design provides ample audio to fill a large room. The CineMate comes with everything you need to set it up, and the system is easy to set up and use. The system's remote is large and nicely designed, and it works well. The CineMate's included cables were too long for our TV, so you have to unplug them and plug them back in each time you watch TV. The CineMate's remote isn't waterproof or compatible with Amazon Alexa, so you can't use it with your Fire TV or Echo Dot. The CineMate's 120v, 60-watt power supply is large and noticeable. This power supply must be plugged into an outlet, and using it is not uncommon for home theater systems. The CineMate's 6.5-foot power cord is also large, which can be annoying if you have limited outlet space. The CineMate's external subwoofer, which is sold separately, is large and relatively heavy. The subwoofer's power cord is very long, though, so it isn't difficult to set up. The subwoofer's remote control is large and works well. The CineMate's speakers are large and bulky, so they don't take up much room. The CineMate's subwoofer and speakers both add a good amount of weight to your system, so you'll need to account for the added weight when moving the system. The CineMate's speakers are relatively loud, though, so they're loud enough to fill a large room. The CineMate's speakers are loud enough to fill a large room. The CineMate's speakers are too small to overpower the dialogue in movies and TV shows, though, so you'll occasionally hear muffled or distorted dialogue.
The soundbar is designed for table-top placement only. There are no mounting features and/or wall bracket available for this soundbar.
The Bose CineMate 15 is perfect for smaller rooms or home theaters where space is at a premium. The compact soundbar is sturdy, easy to set up, and sounds great in small and medium rooms. The CineMate 15's 6.5-inch drivers deliver deep, rich bass, and the included amplifier adds even more bass. The 2-inch tweeters deliver crisp, clear vocals and high-frequency effects. The CineMate 15's built-in wireless subwoofer provides powerful bass that can fill a medium-size room. The remote is convenient for controlling the soundbar and the sub, and it includes volume buttons for TVs and sound bars. The CineMate 15 supports Bluetooth streaming, so you can play music from your phone or laptop. The CineMate 15 can pair with up to two other Bose home theater systems via Wi-Fi, creating a system that covers a large living room or small basement. The CineMate 15 includes a microphone for voice controls and a 3.5mm mic input for hooking up your TV or Blu-ray player. The CineMate 15 is easy to set up, and the soundbar comes with a handy remote control that makes it easy to control the soundbar and the sub. The CineMate 15 produces an impressive full, rich sound, and the included amplifier adds even more bass, so movies, TV shows, sports and video games come to life. The CineMate 15 is a great soundbar for small to medium-size rooms.
The Bose Wave Music System IV is a great-sounding music system, offering spacious, lifelike sound, and plenty of connectivity options including Bluetooth, AirPlay, and USB. Its features set this system apart from others in this price range, including a built-in CD player, dual alarms, touch-top on/off/snooze, and a slim remote with 12 presets. The Music System IV's sound quality is also its biggest selling point. It has better sound from the speakers than most other systems in this price range, and although it's less powerful than Bose's more expensive systems, the Wave Music System IV is plenty loud enough to fill a small to medium-sized room. The speakers are slightly ported, so the system sounds a little more open than some systems, and it gives the impression that the sound is coming from all sides. The Wave Music System IV also has better sound than most systems in this price range, thanks to the breakthrough waveguide technology. The waveguide system uses four speakers, two tweeters and two midranges, and, because of the way it's tuned, the Wave Music System IV produces sound that doesn't sound like it's coming from a single speaker. The speakers also perform better than some others in this price range, thanks to Bose's advanced waveguide technology. The Wave Music System IV also has a wireless option, so you can stream music from your smartphone, tablet, or computer. The Music System IV's CD/MP3 CD player is a feature that not all music systems in this price range have, and it's a great option if you like having the option of listening to music on CDs. The Music System IV also has good audio performance for AM/FM radio, and it offers more AM/FM presets than most of the other systems in this price range. Overall, this is a high-quality system that offers plenty of features for a great price.
Easy smart soundbar setup The Bose Smart Soundbar 900 uses a single connection to any TV. Choose from the HDMI eARC connection or optical audio connection (both cables provided), connect the soundbar to a TV, hook it up to power, and turn it on
The Bose Smart Soundbar 900 Dolby Atmos with Alexa Built-In is the most immersive soundbar we've tested, and it's a pleasure to use. This soundbar has no problem filling a small apartment or room, and it delivers astonishing amounts of bass, which feels punchy and real. The soundstage is wide, and it's particularly impressive in Dolby Atmos mode, which pumps out sounds from overhead. The Smart Soundbar 900 is wonderful to listen to, and if you pair it with one of our other picks, you'll get stereo sound in Dolby Atmos and stereo Bluetooth streaming. The Alexa integration is spotty: sometimes Alexa responds immediately, and other times it takes several seconds. But if you can live with that drawback, the Smart Soundbar 900 is one of the best-sounding, most immersive soundbars we've tested, and it's well worth the high price tag.
Control: Easily control your home speaker with 3 different ways to manage what you hear: your voice, the Bose Music app, or 6 1-touch presets on top of the speaker
The Bose Home Speaker 500 is a terrific-sounding smart speaker with Alexa voice control, and for folks with smartphones, it's the easiest speaker to set up (since all you need to do is pair it with the Bose Music app). Beyond its sound quality, the Home Speaker 500 has another advantage: it's extremely affordable. Our testing showed that this speaker is leagues better-sounding than Siri or Google Assistant on Apple devices, and it's more impressive than Google's own Home Max smart speaker. It's also more reliable when it comes to playback. Unlike Amazon's Echo or Apple's Homepod, the Home Speaker 500 doesn't suffer from random voice failure, and it never dropped the music we were playing. And it's easy to set up, with detailed prompts to guide you through pairing it with other devices. We liked that the Home Speaker 500 supports multiple input sources, so it can pair with other devices, like Apple Airplay 2 or Spotify Connect, and control multiple rooms. The Home Speaker 500 also has some very nice extras, like built-in Alexa and Google Assistant. You can control your Home Speaker 500 using an iPhone, iPad, or Android device (either through the native Alexa app or with Google Assistant), or by using the Bose Music app. The Bose Music app has tons of great features, like the ability to highlight certain songs or playlists, control playback on multiple devices, and stream music streaming services like Spotify, Pandora, and iHeartRadio. The Home Speaker 500 also has a built-in mic, so you can use it with Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant for voice control. And there's a noise-rejecting mic system, so your home speaker can hear you even if you're across the room. And you can control your Home Speaker 500 using the built-in buttons or the voice-assistant button.