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Thread: Bose vs. Onkyo

  1. #1
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    Bose vs. Onkyo

    We recently bought a new plasma TV for our TV room and were looking to get a good audio system to go along with it. What I am currently looking at is the Bose Lifestlye 28 and the Onkyo HT-S780. Now I know that Bose is one of the best when it comes to home theater audio, but the only think scaring me away is the price. I have heard a lot about Onkyo recievers and it has only been good. Basically my question is that is it worth it to shell out that much money for a Bose or buy the Onkyo for a cheaper price and get better componet speakers. Thanks.


    Here are links:

    Onkyo-S780 http://www.us.onkyo.com/model.cfm?m=...ss=Systems&p=i

    Bose http://www.bose.com/controller?event...ls28_dvd_index

  2. #2
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Hi, welcome to AR,

    The Bose is good if you like to spend money and need to have tini speakers. But there are many systems you could put together for less that would sound better. Onkyo is just one.

    What kind of budget are you trying to work with?
    What will you need? (DVD player? Recorder? 5.1, 6.1, 7.1?)
    Will you only be using it for home theater or music too? How much of each %?)
    Do you have room for larger speakers?
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  3. #3
    Da Dragonball Kid L.J.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtymightymike
    but the only think scaring me away is the price.]
    And it should scare you. $2299 is waaaaay to much for basically a HTIB. You should take Bose out, keep Onkyo in and add Denon, Yamaha, HK and Marantz to the line up. Add some good speakers and you should be OK. How much of a budget you working with?

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    1)The budget would probably be between 1,000-1,500
    2) We have a DVD player, so basically all we need is a reciever and speakers. Looking at 7.1
    3) Mostly movies, so it would be 85% movies 15% music
    4) Not huge floor standing speakers, would learn towards shelf speakers though.

  5. #5
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Poke around in here to get a few ideas. Just as a starting point. Don't buy anything until you've had a chance to hear them.

    http://www.accessories4less.com/cgi-...gory/HomeAudio

    http://www.accessories4less.com/cgi-...RSR7400KEFPACK
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  6. #6
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Then maybe you can save a little cash and go with something like these:

    http://www.accessories4less.com/cgi-.../KEFKHT1005BLK

    and this:

    http://www.accessories4less.com/cgi-bin/item/MARSR4500

    They are many other systems available that are just as good or better. Try not to be in a rush (I know this is the hard part) but take your time. Go out and hear as many as you can before you make a purchase that will be with you for years. You want it to make you smile each time you turn it on, not upset you because you found something you like better, for less, a few weeks later.
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

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    I wish there was a place around my area that specializes in Home Theater Audio. That would be the only place I could probably hear some of these high end systems.

  8. #8
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtymightymike
    I wish there was a place around my area that specializes in Home Theater Audio. That would be the only place I could probably hear some of these high end systems.
    Where is your area? Someone here may know of a place you could go.
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  9. #9
    Suspended markw's Avatar
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    You're getting good advice but I have a question.

    Quote Originally Posted by mtymightymike
    Now I know that Bose is one of the best when it comes to home theater audio, ...
    No offense, but why do you say this? I'm just curious as to how and where these ideas originate.

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    In terms of the whole package I guess and the simpliness of it all. We have a factory direct outlet store of Bose and went there to see choices. They brought us in a theater and showcased their systems. I have decent knowledge when it comes to home audio, but nothing spectactular.

  11. #11
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by markw
    No offense, but why do you say this? I'm just curious as to how and where these ideas originate.
    Almost everwhere other than the real audio world calls Bose the best. Last year I went to Disney Land. While we were at Epcott I noticed a home theater exibit. It was billed as "the ultimate home theater experience." Guess what was inside. Bose! Bose cubes and Bose subs. They carefully explained to us how the tini cubes handle the highs and the sub (which can be hid behind things) would handle the lows. Took me a month to convince my wife that Bose was NOT the best.
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  12. #12
    Da Dragonball Kid L.J.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtymightymike
    I wish there was a place around my area that specializes in Home Theater Audio. That would be the only place I could probably hear some of these high end systems.
    Best buy carries Yamaha products and Circuit City carries Onkyo and HK. Your local Best Buy may have a Magnolia Hifi which carries Denon, Marantz and Pioneer Elite. This is where I purchased my Denon products.

  13. #13
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by L.J.
    Best buy carries Yamaha products and Circuit City carries Onkyo and HK. Your local Best Buy may have a Magnolia Hifi which carries Denon, Marantz and Pioneer Elite. This is where I purchased my Denon products.
    You left out Martin Logan. I almost fainted when I saw them.
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  14. #14
    Suspended markw's Avatar
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    Can't say I blame you here. They do make a stunning demonstration.

    Quote Originally Posted by mtymightymike
    In terms of the whole package I guess and the simpliness of it all. We have a factory direct outlet store of Bose and went there to see choices. They brought us in a theater and showcased their systems. I have decent knowledge when it comes to home audio, but nothing spectactular.
    These Bose stores are created specifically to show off Bose HT at it's best. Ideal conditions for their systems, ideal placement of those tiny speakers (stand right here now) , ideal source material which is selected specificallty show off their good points and sweep their failings under the rug.

    and, most important of all, nothing to compare it against.

    I will say, however, that their human engineering is second to none. I love that remote that comes with their most expensive HT. Now, if only Denon would take a gander.

    Seriously, it's the styling, human engineering, ease of setup and operation, size and mystique* you pay for with Bose. Nort the sound.

    *NOT that blue thing in the X-Men movies. If It was, I'd have several Bose systems myself

  15. #15
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    While I'm not a Bose basher...

    ...you will find that your better choice will be Onkyo, here's why:

    Bose is a closed-end system, you may be able to connect some auxl devices to it, but Bose, for the most part, uses proprietary connectors, ostensibly for simplified, fool-proof set-up...You MUST use the system "as is", the controller is virtually useless without the bass module which also contains the power amps that drive the speakers, which themselves can't be used alone without the potential for catastrophic failure if connected to conventional components. There is no room for real expansion and each component is useless without the others designed for that interconnection. It's a package deal.

    On the flip-side, set-up is relatively simple and the WAF is usually high as they certainly are "decorator-friendly" But it comes at a cost as you are very well aware. Plus (FWIW) there is the cache' of owning Bose...

    With the Onkyo (or nearly every other HTIB) industry standard RCA-type connectors and raw speaker wire, etc. etc. etc. expansion is a reality...different speakers, DVD players et al...of course if that's not in the long term plan, the point is moot. It would seem from your post that you are already considering an upgrade.

    You will have to weigh the various options or even consider going beyond HTIB, in which case the choices are nearly limitless, dictated to only by your level of involvement and wallet...WAF is not high which can be a problem!

    jimHJJ(...just some thoughts...oh, I see the lunchtime crowd is in...)
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    check this review about bose very intersting

    http://www.intellexual.net/bose.html
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  17. #17
    Forum Regular N. Abstentia's Avatar
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    I just wanna puke whenever I hear that somebody thinks Bose is good. I just don't understand it.

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    Best Buy advertised a decent 7.1 Denon package for around $700.

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    As you have seen here, mightymike, Bose isn't too respected. Many people here think they are way overpriced for an inferior product. Some others think that outside of this site as well. However, Bose does a fantastic job advertising and marketing their product- that's exactly why so many people think it is the highest quality HT/audio out there. I'm a corporate trainer and we talk about hobbies once in a while in class- whenever I say that a hobby of mine is HT/audio equipment, it's guaranteed someone in class mentions how Bose is top of the line. Or something like, "You must have Bose then."

    I personally don't think Bose products sound bad; I just think the prices are high for what you get.

    I recommend picking up a Onkyo, Denon, or Yamaha receiver in the $300-$500 price range. Then pick some speakers that are made by a speaker company who only make speakers- pick up 2 front bookshelf speakers and their matching center channel. You can also pick up the 2 surrounds at that time, too. Subs can be expensive, but they're very important in HT so do your research- about $350-$500 should get you a decent sub. No need for 7.1 right off the bat- there aren't even DVDs recorded this way yet (or at least I don't think there are)- some people like the 7.1 and how it fills in gaps in their room, but you need a decent amount of room for all those speakers, too.

    HTIB set-ups aren't all that bad, but it depends what you're looking for. If you want top notch sound, then don't get a HTIB. If you want okay/decent sound for next to nothing money-wise, then HTIB is for you. My brother got the Onkyo HTS770 or something like that a couple years ago and it's perfect for him because he's really not too much into audio/HT- he wanted 5.1 so he got that and it's honestly not bad at all- especially for $400.

    It all depends on what you want. The great majority here will talk so negatively about HTIB set-ups and they're talking negatively most likely because it's not for them- they are probably more into higher quality set-ups- makes sense- that's why they're visiting this site.

    Here's my $.02 -- if you spent a decent amount on the plasma, I'm think you want good or even great quality for sound. What's a movie that looks great, but doesn't sound too good? If you are going to spend more than $400-$500 for everything, get the HTIB out of your options and look at a receiver and speakers. Also, Bose is pricey so look at other combinations. Remember, pick a receiver that will do the job (like a Yamaha 657/5860 or Onkyo 603)- then get a couple front speakers from a good speaker company and be sure to get the center channel at the same time (much better if they match). You can always finish out your HT with surrounds and a sub later on. Many people are so into getting everything right away- then they regret not researching and putting enough effort/thought/money into it.

    Good luck and let us know what you decide.
    Eric

  20. #20
    Forum Regular Registered Member paul_pci's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by N. Abstentia
    I just wanna puke whenever I hear that somebody thinks Bose is good. I just don't understand it.
    Please, you understand it. Like the rest of us, you just hate to see people taken in by marketing schemes.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by paul_pci
    Please, you understand it. Like the rest of us, you just hate to see people taken in by marketing schemes.
    Yeah maybe that's what I don't understand!

    Bose salesman: "These speakers sound great because of the research!"

    Customer: "They don't really sound that great to me."

    Bose salesman "But they use a bass module that you can't even see! They sound fantastic, trust me. Even Paul Harvey said so!"

    Customer: "Okay, maybe they do sound good."

    Why people can't just at least turn around and go listen to other speakers first is beyond me.

  22. #22
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    wait...is this a real question?

    I think I would get the Onkyo just so it wouldn't say Bose on it.

    I went to a Nissan dealership a few weeks ago. I got into the new Altimaa SE-R and thought it looked not bad, quite improved from the past models. I saw that the Bose logo was a bit bigger as well...I got out of the car and left the dealership.
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  23. #23
    AR Member JeffKnob's Avatar
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    The most I would ever pay for that Bose system would maybe be $300. It isn't worth anything more than that. The bass module isn't a real subwoofer because it doesn't go deep enough, there is a gap in sound between the bass module and the other speakers, and the satelite speakers only go up to about 13Khz. That is not what I would consider a good system. You should go with the Onkyo or some of the other systems suggested.

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    Thanks for all the advice, I think Bose is out of the question. I will probably go with a decent Denon or Onkyo reciever and tack on the speakers and sub. Anything suggestions on speakers? I also live in Central New York between Syracuse and Rochester, so if anyone has a good place around those areas that specialize in home theater audio please tell.

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    Look for a Tweeter. Circuit City, and a Best Buy. I know they are in the Albany area, so they should be either in Syracuse, or Rochester. If anything, you can cross the boarder to Mass, and get to Springfield. These stores would have a good setup to preview.

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