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Speaker & Amp; Earbud Knowledge | What Speakers Work With Google Home

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Google Home is a fun and useful tool for searching for information, controlling your smart home devices, and streaming music. You are going to want to get the most out of your music streaming experience, so you will need to find a compatible speaker that delivers the right punch for the right price. You are going to want to find what speakers work with Google Home along with other devices to get the best value from Google Home

Comparison Table

Getting Started

The Google HomeGoogle Home Mini, and Google Home Max are the search engine and smartphone giant's answer to Amazon's Echo series of smart speakers. As such, they come ready to stream audio right out of the box. But there are ways to enhance the experience with better speakers and additional smart home gadgets and devices.


The power behind the Google Home is the Google Assistant technology, and that comes built into several types of smart speakers besides Google Home. If quality audio is your thing, then you may want to consider one of those devices to improve your aural experience. Look at what speakers work with Google Home or Google Assistant to get your money's worth.


Smart home devices compatible with the Google Home/Google Assistant technology range from simple entertainment devices to thermostats, door locks, and appliances. If you are looking to get the most out of your Google Home device, consider adding some of these gadgets to your home network.

Smart Speakers

Smart speakers come with the Google Assistant installed, so there's no need to purchase a Google Home device and separate speakers. The Google Home speaker is itself a top-rated design with high-quality audio, multiple colors, and a pair of finishes for the base device (fabric covering or metal). The Google home can be bought online or at local retailers.


If you want something a little more portable with the battery life to take your audio on the go, you may want to consider the JBL Link 20. While it's a little more expensive, it can hold a charge for up to 10 hours, comes with Chromecast built in, and is even waterproof, the JBL Link 20 might be ideal for that backyard barbeque or pool party you are planning.

 Hard Travel Case For JBL Link 20 Voice-Activated Portable Bluetoot Speaker

Hard Travel Case for JBL Link 20 Voice-Activated Portable Bluetooth...
  • Hard Travel Case for JBL Link 20 Voice-Activated Portable Bluetooth Speaker by co2CREA
  • The case is shockproof dustproof and water resistance, protect your favorite device from bumps dents and scratches
  • Material: EVA, Color: Black

Google likes its hardware almost as much as it does its software, and it makes an impressive entry into the super-sized smart speaker market with the Google Home Max. If you want the all-in-one design and can afford the higher price tag, the Google Home Max has all the functionality of the original Google Home but packs a much bigger audio punch.


For a mid-sized alternative, you could also consider the Onkyo Smart Speaker G3. With full bass tones and crisp, clear vocals, the compact G3 delivers high-quality audio for about half the price of the Google Home Max. The only downside is that--like all other third-party speakers--it cannot make phone calls using the Google Assistant.

Chromecast Entertainment Devices

Entertainment gets a strong boost from the pair of Chromecast devices put out by Google itself. The Chromecast Audio streamer is a dedicated device for streaming Google Play Music and other music services like Pandora and Spotify. When connected to your existing speaker setup, the Chromecast Audio pairs with the voice control of Google Home to create an affordable, wireless multi-room Wi-Fi audio system. Use multiple Chromecast Audios to synchronize audio playback throughout your home.


When paired with the original Google Chromecast video streaming device, Google Home acts as a powerful, voice-activated remote control. Simply tell your Google Assistant to stream a favorite show on Netflix or to play that funny video on YouTube you love, then sit back, relax, and enjoy. You can even use it with a smart TV like a Vizio M-series that has Chromecast built in.

VIZIO M55-E0 SmartCast M-Series

Your Smart Home

smart home

image source: pixabay.com

Nest


The Nest company is one of the best-known manufacturers of smart home devices. These self-learning, Wi-Fi enabled devices include thermostats, smoke detectors, and security devices. Want to raise or lower the temperature in your home? Tell your Google Assistant to adjust the thermostat. Turn lights on or off, lock or unlock your doors, all with simple voice commands to Google Home.

Phillips Hue & LIFX

Philips Hue Smart Hub (Works with AlexaÃÃà Apple...
  • VOICE ACTIVATED: With the Philips Hue Smart Hub, add up to 50 Philips Hue smart lights of your choice with this...
  • CONTROL YOUR SMART LIGHTS FROM ANYWHERE: The heart of your Philips Hue system, this hue hub also enables you to control...
  • FULLY AUTOMATE YOUR SMART HOME: Enhance your Philips Hue system by setting timers and alarms, connecting to a variety of...

Hook up over fifty lights in your home to a Phillips Hue Bridge, then control them with your Google Home or smartphone app. Voice commands run from basic lights on and off to adjusting lighting levels for just the right amount of brightness. Install LIFX Smart Lights to get millions of options in color and hundreds of shades of light. All with just a few simple vocal commands.

Smart Home Hubs


Want a smart home but don't have smart devices? A converter by TP-Link or a Wink hub is the answer. With switches and plugs that transform your devices, you can take control with Google Home and the power of your voice. Lamps and other devices will switch on and off whenever you tell them to. Dim the lights or lower the air conditioner with these devices.

Home Security

secure

image source: pixabay.com

VIVINT Smart Doorbell Video Camera Pro

Although Vivint Security's primary interface for their total home automation and security systems is the home's main console, the company has recently integrated with Google Home to allow you to control security functions with voice commands. Set your alarm, turn on lights, lock your doors, and set your cameras to record all with your Google Home voice interaction.

Smart Locks From August

August Smart Lock - Keyless Home Entry with Your Smartphone - Silver
  • Add an August Connect Wi-Fi Bridge (sold separately) to remotely lock/unlock and monitor your door as well to integrate...
  • Secure, keyless entry for your smart home. Lock and unlock your door, control keyless access and keep track of who comes...
  • Keep your existing lock and keys. Easily attaches to your existing deadbolt, so everyone can still use their keys.

Smart locks from August keep your home secure and do not require a key. Use your app or voice commands to ensure your doors are locked or to unlock just the front door when you get home. Check in with Google Assistant to verify your doors are locked when you are away.

Appliances

Neato Bot Vac Connected

Neato Botvac Connected Wi-Fi Enabled Robot Vacuum, Compatible with...
  • Works with Alexa for voice control (Alexa device sold separately).
  • Wi-Fi connected for ultimate control - use the Neato app to clean your floors from wherever you are and receive...
  • D-Shape design with CornerClever technology cleans close to walls and into corners. Long lasting Li-Ion battery.

More and more home appliances are automated and integrated with smart technology to increase efficiency. From the Neato Bot Vac Connected, a voice-powered smart vacuum cleaner, to the Smarter iKettle and Smarter Coffee Maker, kitchen devices controlled with a smartphone app or Google Home voice commands, appliance makers are making the voice-controlled future of science fiction a reality today. Even GE is making voice-controlled washing machines and dryers.

So Much More Than Speakers

Google Home is more than just a device for listening to music or getting search results, so knowing what speakers work with Google Home is only the first step in taking full advantage of Google Home and Google Assistant. Almost any speaker will work with Google Home devices, but there are numerous options for devices powered by Google Home and Google Assistant.


The first step is finding the right Google Assistant-powered device. Whether it is from the Google Home line of devices or a third-party device, choose the one that is right for you. If you want the full range of Google Assistant features, Google's proprietary devices are the way to go. If you do not care about making calls with Google Assistant, a robust third-party option may save you some money and bring you better sound quality.


If you really want to take advantage of your Google Home device, start looking at other compatible devices. Set up your home to be a voice-powered paradise.

 

Chromecast Audio from Google creates a wireless home audio experience for a relatively low cost. Chromecast video streaming lets you watch your favorite shows just by telling Google Home what you want to watch.


Get even more out of your Home and your house with a full line of smart home devices and appliances. Protect your home with voice-powered smart locks, lights, and security system. Save money on heating and cooling costs with a voice-controlled smart thermostat that can learn how hot or cold you like the house at certain times.

Order up a cup of coffee like the captain from Star Trek with a coffee maker that responds to your voice commands. Simplify your laundry with a voice-activated washing machine. The possibilities are endless, and the convenience is hard to beat.

Why Find What Speakers Work With Google Home?

Google Home, Google Home Mini, and Google Home Max are so much more than just music devices. It may be very simple to find what speakers work with Google Home, but you owe it to yourself to investigate everything you can accomplish with a Google Home device.


Search for recipes, preheat the oven, turn the lights down low, and set the mood music for a night in with just a few simple voice commands. Google Home is a powerful device to help you get your life just right. While knowing what speakers work with Google Home is a great starting place, knowing what devices work to make your home a better, and more efficient is even better.


While it can't do everything for you, Google Home and Google Assistant can help you do anything you can imagine. All you have to do is ask it. "Hey, Google!" is all it takes to get started.


featured image source: pixabay.com

Speaker Doesn’t Work – Here’s What You Need To Do

speaker doesn't work that needs repair

Image from Amazon

So your speaker doesn't work. Something that needs to be taken into account when discussing sound devices, is that they have revolutionized the way we listen to things today. From radio to television, to cellphone devices, speakers and headphones have transcended the way we listen and communicate.

Speakers and headphones have been around doing their job since they were created. Back in the 1920's horns were used for music and performances as speakers. They also created headphones around the same time, and serve a different but similar purpose; it was less for performances, and more for a person to hear a message like a radio transmission.

The Scoop on Speakers

Evolution of the Speaker

Records of the first speaker ever made dates back to 1861 where German scientist and inventor Johann Philipp Reis installed an electric loudspeaker in a telephone prototype. Fifteen years later, Alexander Graham Bell got a patent for his first electric loudspeaker which, unlike Reis's, could reproduce intelligible speech as part of the telephone he was inventing.

In 1877, Bell's design became the catalyst for the creation of an improved electric loudspeaker from someone else - a German scientist that goes by the name of Ernst Siemens. At first, the sound quality was bad, and amplification was almost impossible at low volume. Loudspeakers were driven by compressed air, which moved a thin vibrating membrane across a metal horn. Not the ideal thing to use when you're looking to broadcast a sound signal.

various electronic gadgets

image source: www.unsplash.com

In 1937, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer introduced the Shearer Horn, which became the first two-way loudspeaker system that was designed for use in the film industry. It was made of eight 27-inch low-frequency drivers, and was designed by noted audio electronics, acoustics designer, and engineer Rudolph Bozak.

He was the Chief Engineer for American speaker company Cinaudagraph. As everyone began to see the difference between the two, people chose electric loudspeakers over their old Victrola-style acoustic gramophones.

The U.S. Navy then assigned an engineer, Arthur Janszen, a research project to figure out a way to change the way prior speakers were working. He believed the cone speakers available then were too non-linear in phase and amplitude. That made the speakers of the time poor in dealing with sound quality, so he built an electrostatic model of his own and created the electrostatic speaker.

Over the next half-century, advancements in the field of an electrostatic loudspeaker design resulted in the formation of a competitive and rapidly evolving market consisting of products that provide a better and more refined listening experience.

Why Is Having Speakers Important?

a girl lying down with a vintage radio

image source: www.unsplash.com

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you need to have the best music playing for yourself or your guest? Whether it's at home, outside, or someplace remote there are speakers designed just for you.

Main Types of Speakers

Home Indoor Speakers

Indoor speakers can come as a simple stereo pair, or they can be as comprehensive as a multi-unit home audio setup. They are designed to deliver amazing sound and provide the optimal audio output for indoor use.

Outdoor Speakers

Most outdoor speakers today are Bluetooth or NFC-enabled, allowing you to use your smartphone or tablet as a portable audio source. They are meant to be used in even the most extreme environments since the sound quality usually takes a backseat to rugged design and portability.

Car Speakers

The main specifications to consider when buying car speakers are power handling and sensitivity. These can either be full-range or component speakers, and are made from a different woofer, tweeter, and surround materials.

Home Theater Speaker 

Home theater speaker systems are available in various configurations; the most common of which are the 5.1- and 7.1-channel systems. When positioned correctly, these speakers produce a sound image that mimics that of a cinema or movie theater.

How to Install Speakers

One of the most commonly asked questions when purchasing a pair of speakers is how to install them. There are safety tips you should follow to make sure that wherever you place these speakers, you or nobody else gets hurt and that the product doesn't get damaged.

1

Setting up Your Equipment

Most outdoor speaker systems run off an existing indoor receiver. Since the receiver is a sensitive piece of electronics, you usually want to set the receiver up indoors. A multi-zone receiver allows you to have music playing outside while something else plays inside.

2

Install a Volume Control Box Outside

Make sure it is in a sheltered location. You will run the speaker wire from the receiver to the volume control box, and then from the volume control box to the associated speakers. Most volume control boxes can be easily mounted on an outdoor wall.

3

Install a Multi-Channel Amplifier

When running multiple pairs of speakers, each pair you add increases the chance of overloading the receiver's built-in amplifier. You can install the amplifier right next to the receiver and then run the speaker wire out of the amplifier.

4

Obtain Enough Speaker Wire

16-gauge is fine for less than 80 feet (24 m), but longer wires should be 14- or 12-gauge. If you don't use the right gauge for your speakers, your audio quality will suffer. With the longer the wire, the more degradation will occur. Run your speaker wire from the receiver to the outside area.


Drill a hole low in the wall to run the speaker wire from the inside to the outside. Seal the hole with silicone to maintain your house's insulation. Run the speaker wire to the volume control box and then run a second wire from the box to the speakers.

Speaker Doesn't Work - Diagnosis

Like any other product or appliance, speakers run the risk of being damaged and not working. There are a few things you could test out for diagnosis when your speaker doesn't work. Many times, it's something simple, other times not so much.

How to Troubleshoot Speakers

modern look speaker

image source: www.unsplash.com

Measure the Speaker Impedance

One way to troubleshoot when your speaker doesn't work is to check the speaker's impedance with a multimeter. Speakers always come with an impedance rating. You can find the impedance rating written on the back of the speaker.

When measuring the impedance of the speaker using a multimeter, place one probe on one terminal when your speaker doesn't work and the other probe on the other terminal of the speaker. A good speaker will have an impedance at just about its impedance rating. If the impedance is at the speaker's rating, the speaker normally is good.

Checking for a Shorted Speaker or Speaker Wire

When the speaker doesn't work, it may be disconnected at the far end of the wire. Just recheck the wire to make sure it's connected. A common problem with speaker wires is that the bare copper ends of the wire sometimes touch other speaker wires or other metal parts.

It's best to strip only 1/2-5/8" of insulation and twist the protruding copper strands tightly together before connecting them to the receiver or amplifier. Be sure to do the same at the speaker end of the wires.

Figuring Out Which Speaker is Broken

Turn the volume up loud enough to be heard without having the speaker shut itself down. Then listen to each of the speakers. When the speaker doesn't work, it may be the bad one. If the unit shuts down with no speakers connected, then it will need repair.

Speaker Doesn't Work - Repair

marshall speaker

image source: www.unsplash.com

Eventually, you will blow a speaker out, or a part of the machine will eventually stop working. The first thing that will come up is how do I fix it? The first step in trying to repair when the speaker doesn't work is to make sure it's plugged in correctly. This ensures you waste little time figuring it out before messing with anything on the inside.

If your speaker isn't working, or it has a hole in it, you can try to sew it shut.

The First Thing You Would Need is a Thread And Stitch.

Tie a big knot at the end of your thread if this is your first time sewing anything, otherwise, use whatever fastening method for which you're comfortable. Push your needle through the cone, approximately 1/8" to 1/4" from the outer edge. Pull your thread tight, and then push down through the ribbing, near the inside edge. Keep the stitch tight. Repeat this until you have gone all the way around your cone or have run out of thread.

Next Use Glue And Wait.

Add a second layer of structural integrity to your speakers by using the glue. Run a semi-consistent bead over your stitched area. It doesn't have to be thick. Use your glue and spread it to cover your thread evenly, taking care not to wipe too much glue off.

And Last But Not Least, Install And Test The Speaker.

Now that the glue has dried install your speaker and give it a test, and you're all set!

Conclusion

Like any other product or appliance, a speaker runs the risk of being damaged and just not working. There are a few things you could test out when running into problems with your speakers. Many times, it's something simple, other times not so much.

Top Speaker & Earbud Comparisons | Anker Soundcore Vs Soundcore 2

Anker soundcore wireless speaker

There are very few people in the world who don't enjoy music. For the vast majority of us, music is there with us through it all. Traveling by car or plane as a passenger, having a fun get-together at the beach, by the pool, or by the campfire, music is there for us motivating us, driving to inspire us into productivity and innovation, and entertaining us. Today we're going to compare two great portable speakers: the Anker SoundCore vs SoundCore 2.

Comparison Table

Gray mini speaker and a smartphone near white wall

Image source: pexels.com

We take pride in the music we listen to, and most of us seek out the perfect technology engineered by the very best manufacturers who will do justice to the themes of our lives. Luckily for the common consumer, there are endless options out there for high-quality speakers to suit every need and personality, every genre of music and any place one may want to listen.

With such an enormous selection of audio playing devices, there are countless brands that claim to have the best durability, the sleekest design, the longest battery life, the highest sound quality, and the greatest of anything else an audiophile could possibly want. There are also plenty of speakers brand names that go head to head with their products, closely engineering their speakers with the most professional technology, one brand always attempting to one-up the other.

For the consumer who wants a portable speaker that can offer all of the above and more while still standing on its own platform in aspects such as quality, looks, and design, the Anker brand is the answer to their prayers. Anker does not need to push itself against any other brand name to claim its spot as one of the most trusted and formidable brand names on the market, it stands alone as a quality brand with not only a huge selection of speakers for every need, but manufacturers at Anker persistently strive to better each new product as an improvement from the last.

What Are The Anker SoundCore vs SoundCore 2?

The Anker SoundCore vs SoundCore 2 are portable Bluetooth wireless speakers. These speakers are designed to easily hook up to any audio playing device via Bluetooth, which is a wireless connectivity output, so that there are no annoying wires that can get tangled up involved. There are countless models out on the market today that boast impressive specs for hundreds of different speakers, but Anker is a brand name one can trust with years of innovation and careful manufacturing under their belts.


The SoundCore line of portable speakers specifically is a line of music playing devices that promises top quality, durability, long-lasting battery life, and all this and more for the most affordable prices on the market. We and many other reviewers are proud to say that Anker and the SoundCore line absolutely meets and exceeds these promises; a lot of their speakers are considered a steal for the specs relative to the low prices!

​Anker SoundCore Specs

Right off the bat, the Anker brand has a few promises they feel confident enough to make to any curious consumer viewing their items. Anker wants consumers to join the other ten million plus people who are currently powered by their leading technology. Anker calls this the Anker Advantage. Additionally, Anker promises superior sound quality through full-bodied stereo speakers with dual high-performance drivers in each of their products.


Anker has patented a unique spiral bass port for bass frequencies that can not be rivaled, and also offers a guaranteed less than 1% total harmonic distortion in each and every model that will deliver enhanced clarity and audio crispness that will not be heard elsewhere.


The first generation Anker SoundCore vs SoundCore 2 is impressive for being the first of its kind. Right out of the box, this speaker delivers an impressive and noticeable bass, and the sound quality holds up without muffling, crackling, or distorting even at the highest volumes.


The physical design and looks of the SoundCore are best described as minimalistic. With a slim, sleek, black build with mesh speakers and a hardened silicone outer shell, this speaker feels substantial and built to last in the user's hand. The volume, power, and Bluetooth control buttons are on the top of the speaker, the same black as the body with slightly raised outlines of each button.


Perhaps the biggest claim to fame from the manufacturers at Anker is the supreme battery life of their products. The SoundCore speaker will play for a guaranteed twenty-four hours straight at a constant 80% volume. This playtime is also measured by about 500 songs, and the impressive high capacity Li-ion battery within is the result of Anker's "industry-leading power management technology." The SoundCore comes equipped with Bluetooth 4.0 technology and automatically reconnects to the last device used for further ease of use. The Bluetooth can keep signal up to 66 feet away. The SoundCore also comes equipped with a  3.5 mm auxiliary input for non-Bluetooth devices.

​Anker SoundCore Boost Specs

To put our Anker SoundCore vs SoundCore 2 argument into better perspective, we decided to compare them both to the SoundCore line Boost portable speaker. This speaker chronologically comes next in the design order after the SoundCore 2, and consumers often pit the two against one another to compare quality-to-price ratios.

By appearance, the SoundCore Boost is almost indistinguishable from the previous generation SoundCore 2. Both speakers sit as long thin rectangles with front facing mesh speakers and a slick-looking smooth rubber black outer shell. The buttons on the Boost almost exactly match the ones on the SoundCore 2: black on black with raised bumps for a discreet minimalist design. Both speakers even weigh the same at 1.29 pounds!


The Bluetooth capabilities of this speaker are easy to use, simple to hook up, and have the same range of capabilities as the SoundCore 2 of up to 66 feet away from the audio device. The Boost also comes equipped with a 3.5 mm auxiliary input for non-Bluetooth devices, just like the SoundCore 2. The micro USB charging port and the auxiliary input are covered by a thick rubber gasket to keep water and dust out.


This speaker has a built-in microphone so that one can take calls via the speaker. The Boost is rated IPX5, which means it can handle some splashing or rain, but is not meant to be completely submerged. The internal battery power of this speaker allows one to continuously listen to music at moderate volumes for around twelve hours.


The Boost gets its name from the "bass up" button featured on the top beside the volume control and Bluetooth buttons. This bass boost is made possible by Anker's "patented BassUp technology" although some users note that the natural sound of the speaker can seem thin and flat when compared to the improvements of the boost function.


The treble, however, was not forgotten during manufacturing and does not fall short. Audiophiles report that the treble frequencies are accentuated just enough so that they are noticeable but do not cause the music quality to have a harsh edge to it.

​Pricing

The SoundCore 1 is listed as a #1 best seller on Amazon and can be purchased for pretty cheap. It has received a rating of 4.6 stars out of five from 11,851 customer reviews. The SoundCore 2 is listed as Amazon's Choice and can be bought for a bit more. It has received a rating of 4.6 out of five stars from 2,413 reviews. 

All Anker products come along with a worry-free 18-month warranty.

​How They Compare

To make this information comprehensible at a glance, we have rated the different aspects of our reviewed Anker products in a chart form. We hope you look these ratings over and gain some insight on which portable speaker is best for you.

​Anker SoundCore

Anker Soundcore Flare Mini Bluetooth Speaker, Outdoor Bluetooth...
  • All Round Pounding Sound: Intense 360° sound drops from back-to-back 5W (10W total) neodymium drivers for stunning...
  • Audio Fireworks: Watch a halo of LEDs phase, pulse, and glow with the rhythm of your music for a next-level listening...
  • Pool Party Proof: No matter where the times go, Flare Mini is an outdoor Bluetooth speaker that is suited up and ready....

Ease of Use

Assembly Time

Design Quality

Warranty

Pros

  • Durable
  • Sleek, subtle, professional looks
  • Twenty-four-hour battery life
  • Flawless Bluetooth signal
  • 3.5 mm auxiliary input for non-Bluetooth devices

Cons

  • Not splash proof or waterproof
  • No back button
  • Buttons can be difficult to locate
  • Outdated Bluetooth version (4.0 where SoundCore 2 has 4.2)
  • A light bass response

​Anker SoundCore Boost

Bluetooth Speakers, Anker Soundcore Boost 20W Bluetooth Speaker with...
  • Boost Your Bass: Enhance your audio at the press of a button with patented Anker BassUp technology. Make your music...
  • Superior Sound: Dual drivers and twin subwoofers deliver 20W of powerful, high-fidelity audio. Boasting room-filling...
  • Play and Charge: Listen for up to 10 hours / 210 songs, and power external devices with a USB port packing Anker's...

Ease of Use

Assembly Time

Design Quality 

Warranty

Pros

  • Bluetooth capabilities of up to 66 feet away from the audio device
  • Simplistic professional black design 
  • Thick rubber gasket covers USB, micro USB, and 3.5 mm auxiliary port 
  • Built-in microphone
  • Splash proof 
  • Anker patented BassUp technology 
  • Trebles, mids, and highs are well-balanced

Cons

  • Prone to fingerprints and grime
  • Buttons can be hard to locate 
  • Built-in speakerphone sounds crackly 
  • Splash proof but not waterproof 
  • Only a twelve-hour battery life 
  • Speaker's audio quality can sound thin and flat 

​Anker SoundCore 2

When one first takes a glance at the SoundCore 2, it does not look like there is much difference between it and the previous generation SoundCore. When one more closely inspects it, lo-and-behold the Anker SoundCore vs SoundCore 2 has made improvements on almost every aspect across the board from its previous version.

The slightly smaller and more dense version of the SoundCore 2 offers a body that is slim and small enough to fit in one's pocket or purse for on the go listening. Despite its underwhelming size, the SoundCore 2 packs a surprising sound punch that holds up against portable Bluetooth speakers twice its size and price. The basic, minimalistic black design is something iconic for the Anker SoundCore line and manufacturers decided to honor this tradition with the SoundCore 2.

Woman reaching for black speaker on white table

​Image source: pexels.​​com

The outer finish of the body of this speaker may be a magnet for fingerprints and dirt, but this speaker can withstand a shower. A brand new IPX5 rating, that was nowhere to be seen in the original SoundCore, has made a proud appearance for this second generation and this speaker has been put to the test by many consumers, putting it out in the rain, in a steamy shower room, by the poolside where it can be prone to splashes, and the SoundCore 2 passes each test with flying colors without skipping a beat.

Manufacturers made sure to pay extra attention and effort to the sound quality of this next generation speaker. The improvements in deeper bass and louder sound are evident as soon as one hears the first notes. The professional sound remains clear, distinctive, and no distortion is present through all types of media such as Spotify, YouTube, and even gaming.

The ease of Bluetooth pairing was a formidable aspect of the first generation SoundCore, and manufacturers kept this function and made small improvements. With an updated Bluetooth version, the pairing function is quick to work the first time, and no problems, distortion, or cut-outs in the audio are present unless one moves beyond the recommended 66 foot parameter.

Despite its improved sound quality and lower bass frequencies, this speaker keeps its iconic stellar battery life of twenty-four hours or 50 songs of playtime on one battery charge. The Anker brand is best known for its quality Li-ion batteries, and many users put the SoundCore 2 to the test with challenges such as weekend camping trips on one battery charge. Audiophiles are happy to report that the SoundCore 2 passes each test without breaking a sweat.

​Anker SoundCore Boost

[Upgraded] Anker Soundcore 2 Portable Bluetooth Speaker with 12W...
  • Tom's Guide calls it "The Best Bluetooth Speaker Value".
  • Unbelievable sound: 12W of pure audio power with enhanced bass Thunders from dual neodymium drivers. An advanced digital...
  • Outdoor-proof: IPX7 protection safeguards against rain, dust, snow, and spills. Get incredible sound at home, in the...

Ease of Use

Assembly Time

Design Quality

Warranty

Pros

  • Dense and slim model
  • Can withstand splashes, rain, and other inclement climates
  • Deeper bass and bigger sound
  • Updated Bluetooth version
  • Twenty-four-hour play time on one Li-ion battery charge

Cons

  • Magnet for fingerprints and dirt
  • Some deeper bass frequencies can cause the speaker to warble and distort at higher volumes
  • Splash proof but not waterproof 

Conclusion

There are many choices out there for one who is seeking out the perfect speaker for their music. We hope we have made this search a bit less overwhelming with these amazing options. The Anker SoundCore vs SoundCore 2 brands should absolutely be considered if one is looking for a durable speaker with a simplistic, non-flashy design, a durability that will last them years, and a fierce battery power to match as well as top quality professional sound that is balanced with deep bass, accented mids, and punchy highs.

If you are someone who wants to spend as little as possible on a speaker while still getting a sleek, professional design, formidable durability, a long-lasting battery, and high-quality sound, then the Anker SoundCore is the perfect choice at under thirty bucks.

With its substantial, tough, built-to-last model, supreme above-average stellar Li-ion battery, easy-to-use Bluetooth capabilities with an impressive range of up to 66 feet, and professional sound that holds up for elongated periods of time at high volumes, the SoundCore is an absolute steal.

If you are interested in the amazing specs of the SoundCore and are willing to spend a bit more money for improvements on those specs, the SoundCore 2 is the way to go. This speaker has twice the wattage for twice the power, an updated Bluetooth version, a new water resistance rating of IPX5, and deeper, bigger sound. All of these amazing improved specs can be yours for only around fifteen dollars more.

If you are someone who enjoys all of the above and has a love for booming bass, the SoundCore Boost, and its bass boost function will be an attractive choice for you. At twice the price of the SoundCore 2, your ears will be blessed with bigger, fuller, deeper sound that becomes deeper still with the Anker patented BassUp technology.

No matter what you choose, though, the Anker SoundCore vs SoundCore 2 argument should be taken into consideration, and the Anker Advantage is always a good option to go with. So join the ten million plus individuals who are powered by Anker's leading technology and let yourself experience their superior sound quality through their dual high-performance drivers and less than 1% total harmonic distortion today!

Top Speaker & Earbud Comparisons | Bose Solo Vs Solo 5

bose solo vs solo 5

As our televisions keep getting slimmer and our video quality keeps getting clearer, the factory speakers that come with our TV's seem to fall by the wayside. Video and esthetically pleasing aspects of the television models will keep improving but manufacturers pay almost no attention to sound and speaker quality. Those who take pride in their living room setups will seek a formidable sound companion for their TV's.

Ever the consumer demand pleaser, Bose has got you covered. Besides manufacturing countless models to suit every dynamic need of its customer base, Bose also takes pride in improving upon older popular models. With their sleek, slim designs, balanced sound, and multiple listening room display/mounting options, it's no wonder Bose is such a revered and trusted brand by professionals and novices alike.

In this article, we will explore the ever-popular Bose Solo vs Solo 5. We will get a better understanding of how Bose improves its products and keeps itself at the top of the best-known speaker brands. We will also compare it to a few other popular competitors so we can see how Bose holds up.

What Is The Bose Solo / Bose Solo 5?

bose speaker on table

Image via Unsplash

The Bose Solo series is a television sound system that hooks up directly to the TV to improve its sound and range. This Bose sound system takes the form of a sound bar that can be positioned below their television or can be mounted on a wall. The Bose Solo 5 is a step up from the Bose Solo because manufacturers tweaked it with comfortability and convenience in mind.

The well-received and carefully created Bose Solo speaker system has become the Bose Solo 5 with the ingenious addition of a universal remote and a wall bracket. Since the remote is universal, it can also control most video sources connected to your TV for added convenience, and the added brackets give the sound bar additional versatility in that it can now be mounted to the wall.

What Is The Benefit Of Using A Sound Bar?

letters forming word benefits

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When making consumer products such as televisions, manufacturers focus on the quality of the image and the looks and design of the model itself. Since TV's are becoming increasingly slimmer, this leaves little room for the factory speakers. Manufacturers rarely give the speakers that come with televisions priority and these speakers end up failing to meet the quality standards of the video quality they are producing.

Since TV's are so slim nowadays, the internal speakers need to maintain a certain level of flatness to fit. The lack of dynamics in a speaker take away from its ability to perform at top quality and range. A top quality television is much more admirable with a sound to complement it.

Any high-quality speaker will improve the sound in your listening area, but sound bars specifically are a top choice because they are an all-in-one. In one bar, these speakers contain the tweeters, sub woofers, and bass, treble, and mid balance with desirable clarity. Most sound bars come with two or more internal speakers offering surround sound from a single unit. Music aside, sound bars can vastly improve the sound of regular TV and movies with an added dialog mode. This mode amplifies voices for crisper clarity. It's a lot similar to having a movie theater right in your living room!

Bose Solo Series Specs  

black speaker

Image via Pexels

As far as Bose Solo vs Solo 5, the speakers themselves are the same. The real difference between the two models is in the accessories that come with the Bose Solo 5. The Solo 5 comes with a bracket for wall mounting capabilities and the universal remote for added peace of mind. 

The Bose Solo vs Solo 5 comes jam-packed with features, including a dialog mode, Bluetooth capabilities for syncing your smartphone or other audio device to the speaker wirelessly, and a single-cord television connector to make setup a snap. The remote offers additional bass adjustment settings to further enhance dramatic and suspenseful scenes in your favorite shows and movies. Manufacturers engineer the sound quality itself to reproduce the dialog, all ranges of tones, and every detail the way it was meant to be heard. 

The sound bar itself weighs only 3.73 pounds and is 2.6 x 21.6 x 3.4 inches. This is on the smaller side for most sound bars, and, far from letting its size hinder its performance, the lightness of the bar only adds to the versatility. You can mount it anywhere, including under your television, on a shelf, or even on the wall. 

The manufacturers offer a one-year warranty on the Bose Solo product as well as a free 60-day technical support policy.

Pricing  

human holding red sign

Image via Pixabay

Though the Bose brand is so trusted and revered, it has a price to match its quality. One can purchase the Bose Solo 5 speaker system online for around $$$. The price is on the higher side, but consumers generally agree the price is worth it for the product. It is listed as Amazon's Choice, and one can also purchase it for the same price directly from the Bose manufacturer website.

How it Compares

We picked a couple of similar products available on the market to see how they compare. 

Bose Solo 5 TV Soundbar Sound System with Universal Remote Control,...
  • Single sound bar provides better sound quality compared to your TV.The Solo 5 TV sound system is an easy solution, with...
  • Dialogue mode to make every word and detail stand out
  • Bluetooth connectivity to wirelessly stream music from any of your devices

Price

Ease of Use

Assembly Time

Design Quality

Warranty

Pros

  • Small, sleek, versatile design allows the listener to mount it anywhere
  • Superior Bose technology ensures a balanced and formidable sound
  • Single cord installation makes setup stress-free
  • Dialog mode to enhance voices

Cons

  • Lack of subwoofer
  • Higher price range
  • Small design limits overall power; highs are not as clear; lows are not as booming
  • Bass, volume, and dialog mode have no on-screen indicators; you must look at the LED indicators on the soundbar itself

The long, thin design of the Samsung HW-F355 soundbar is the perfect fit for televisions of 40 inches or above. The sound bar can sit directly beneath the television blocking no receivers, can fit on any open-ended shelf, and one can even mount it on the wall with the included wall mount brackets. The bar comes along with a wired subwoofer, completely in charge of handling the bass frequencies and it includes a remote. This sound bar comes equipped with Bluetooth connectivity for playing music from your streaming device with the click of a button.

This sound system has an impedance of 8 ohms, and a crossover frequency of 25kHz, meaning the speaker can flawlessly represent the full sound spectrum by splitting frequency bands to the appropriate drivers specifically for those bands. The warranty on this product offers a free 60-day technical support. One can purchase this item from Amazon for around $$$.

Price

Ease of Use

Assembly Time

Design Quality

Warranty

Pros

  • Separate subwoofer ensures high-quality bass capabilities with an extra punch capable of handling the lowest frequencies
  • The thin lengthened design works with TVs 40 inches or above; slim enough model to put right below a TV without covering receivers
  • Crossover technology splits sound to specialized drivers to maximize the full range of sound and help with surround sound effects
  • Included remote allows the listener to adjust the bass as well as volume and Bluetooth controls
  • Advanced listening presets such as sports, drama, gaming, and news adjust the speakers to enhance listening experience no matter what genre you are listening to
  • The built-in equalizer adjusts the volume of different media files to avoid severe jumps in volume

Cons

  • Smaller TVs will not work with this model
  • The soundbar only has one optical, one USB, and one audio jack and some consumers may be off-put by the limited connectivity options
  • The LED display on the front of the bar is too small for the relative size and length of the  bar itself
  • Bulky subwoofer and wired connection can look unsightly  and hinder the possibilities of where to display the bar in the listening room
  • Bass at 2 or 3 can lose balance and become muddled/overpowering

Yamaha YAS-203 Sound Bar with Bluetooth and Wireless Subwoofer
  • Length & Power Output: 34.9-inch 200 W (7.1 channels) - ideal for 40-inch and larger TVs
  • Subwoofer: Wireless
  • Connectivity: Wired, bluetooth

The Yamaha YAS-203 sound system is perhaps the most robust and high-end sound bar on this list. Heavier and bulkier than some other sound bars we've seen, the YAS-203 is the perfect addition to any television measuring 40 inches or more. The pride and joy of this soundbar is its wireless subwoofer that one can place anywhere for a true surround sound effect and amplified bass. The subwoofer itself features a large magnet, a linear port for producing smooth bass, and a front-firing configuration. All the subwoofer needs to function is a quick plug-in to an outlet.

This sound bar also comes with a remote and a bracket for wall mounting, but the soundbar itself features a learning function that allows the user to train the bar to respond to the same signals as the television remote. The remote control that comes with this soundbar also has additional bass and volume functions. A free smartphone app is compatible with the sound bar, and it offers even more customization options and surround modes. The sound bar comes equipped with a TV remote repeater just in case it blocks the receiver, and the bar will signal the TV on its own.

The Clear Voice setting equalizes the volume of dialog and narratives so one can hear better it, and UniVolume ensures that different media files will play at around the same volume. The Yamaha-exclusive AIR SURROUND XTREME technology reproduces a virtual 7.1 surround sound experience and gives out a realistic and impressive sound. Bluetooth capabilities further increase the versatility of this soundbar. One can purchase the Yamaha YAS-203 sound bar on Amazon for around $$$, and the warranty includes a free 60-day technical support.

Price

Ease of Use

Assembly Time

Design Quality

Warranty

Pros

  • Wireless subwoofer adds versatility and additional options for setup
  • Learning function will program the soundbar to your remote for ease of use
  • Advanced audio profile settings offer maximum customization to get desired sound
  • Convex shape of the model centers the sound to create a surround sound experience

Cons

  • No HDMI controller
  • Speaker cord is short which   limits where one can place it
  • LiNo display for the volume on-screen, LED light indicators   onlyst Element
  • The manufacturers do not label indicators and looking at the manual is required to learn how they function

VIZIO SB3821-C6 38-Inch 2.1 Channel Sound Bar with Wireless Subwoofer
  • Enjoy 100 dB of room filling, crystal clear sound with less than 1 percent total harmonic distortion*
  • Wireless subwoofer adds rich bass from anywhere in the room**
  • Built in Bluetooth lets you lose the wires and listen to your music with a tap of a finger with built in Bluetooth

The VIZIO S3851w-D4B sound system offers perhaps the most unique setup on this list. The soundbar comes with a wireless subwoofer and two satellite rear speakers. This is a true 5.1 system for a real home theater experience with left, right, and center channels on the bar itself as well as the wireless subwoofer and the rear speakers.

This speaker has by far the most room-filling capabilities with 100 dB of sound and less than 1% total harmonic distortion to match. Even when the television is off, this sound bar offers Bluetooth capabilities that can connect to any streaming audio device. The VIZIO S3851w-D4B is jam-packed with superior audio technology, such as Dolby Digital and DTS Digital Surround decoding, DTS Studio Sound, DTS True Volume, and DTS Circle Surround Audio post processing.
Manufacturers have designed this sound bar to be compatible with any medium-to-large sized television, and it is 38 inches of sleek design will look good with any TV. One can place the wireless subwoofer and rear speakers anywhere in the listening room for desired surrounding effects. This sound system is available on Amazon for around $$$, and the warranty is a full year with 60 days of free technical support. Because of the additional parts, the setup can be tricky: an expert setup option is available upon purchase for an additional $$.

Price

Ease of Use

Assembly Time

Design Quality

Warranty

Pros

  • Crisp audio makes ambient sounds and small details like paper crinkling and shoes on gravel more noticeable
  • 100 dB of sound and multiple units offer the best surround sound experience on this list
  • TV remote compatibility option available for free setup to avoid the hassle of two separate remotes
  • Excellent value for the price
  • The soundbar itself is big enough to pack a decent punch but is light enough and can still look good mounted on the wall
  • Five inputs for variety include two analog stereos, one digital, one optical, and the Bluetooth

Cons

  • LED lights rather than visual screen show different functions  of this bar and can be difficult to understand without a manual
  • No on-screen displays of volume or settings, the LED lights are  the only indicators
  • The bass can underwhelm on its own and may not be what some audiophiles are looking for
  • Many consumers report that this product is not built to last and can cease functioning after only  a few months of use

Conclusion - Bose Solo vs Solo 5

There are endless possibilities when it comes to choosing the correct sound system to enhance one's factory television speakers. Any choice can be the right choice depending on the specificities of the user's needs and desires.

If you are someone who is looking for a true surround sound experience with rear speakers and a subwoofer to put you in the center of a symphony of balanced tone ranges, the Vizio S3851w-D4B sound system is an optimal choice for you. Someone who is looking to get equalized audio and a deeper bass who is also wary of how much they spend should like to go with the Samsung HW-F355 sound bar and subwoofer.

An audiophile who is willing to make an investment to get a top of the line product carefully designed with room-filling sound, superior technology, and maximized customization options will most likely make the robust, long-lasting model that is the Yamaha YAS-203 their top choice.

If you ask us, however, we believe the Bose brand offers all you could desire and more at a good price for such a revered and trusted brand. It has the same remote functions/capabilities and wall mounting options that the Yamaha has at half the price, and it also boasts Bluetooth capabilities, additional bass adjustment settings, and a single cord installation to make setup user-friendly. The impressive sound the Bose Solo 5 can produce is comparable to the Yamaha, and its light, single-unit system doubles the convenience, especially for those who do not desire bulky hardware such as a separate subwoofer.

When choosing your next sound system, we hope you'll think of the Bose Solo vs Solo 5 scenario and remember that the Bose brand offers not only a wide range of speakers and sound systems to suit every need, but it constantly improves upon popular models. Bose will keep manufacturing products with comfortability, compatibility, convenience, and, most importantly, professional audio in mind. When it comes to Bose Solo vs Solo 5, I give both products five stars and highly recommend them both for audiophiles and casual listeners alike.

Speaker & Earbud Reviews – Bose 901 Speakers

Bose 901 Speakers

If you like listening to music from the side speakers in your car door or through a subwoofer, you've got Bose to thank. The company has more than pulled its weight in the R&D department and is responsible for a whole range of other audio technologies. It was the first brand to think of putting side speakers in high-end vehicles, which has since trickled down to a whole generation of audio-fiends. Even older products, such as the Bose 901 Speakers still hold their ground.

Bose understands that innovation doesn't come cheap, and whatever else their competitors say they have to admit, a lot of what the industry is turning out today owes its existence to research done by Bose. While I believe in giving props where they're due, it doesn't mean that Bose deserves praise just because they've made an effort.

Speakers and Earbuds are a competitive field where it's all about the latest and greatest innovation. So why did we choose the Bose 901 speakers to review? They've certainly been around the block once or twice. In fact, you might have even walked past a broken pair of them once or twice sitting disused on the street corner.

Well, don't count these speakers out just because they've been on the scene for a while. Many after-market units can be snatched up for a bargain and you know they're made to last. So should you consider seeking out a set of Bose 901 speakers? Do these old-timers have a chance of keeping up with the young'uns? Read on and decide for yourself.

Comparison Table

What are the Bose 901 Speakers?

The Bose 901 hasn't been in production by Bose since 1983, according to their website. So you can forget about getting any kind of warranty when you buy it. Assuming that you can find one online, and it shouldn't be too hard if you're motivated, you'll have to take it or leave it based on the condition you find it in.

This model can definitely prove it's got some staying power, but I'd argue that the quality falls far short of "top-notch," and that was true even when it was new. That said, Bose certainly did make a statement with the 901. It became well-known the world over. Famous? Infamous?

Product Specs

Bose 901 Direct/Reflecting Speaker System - Walnut

Image via Amazon

The drivers, where the noise actually comes from, each have one ohm of power flowing through them. This means they can get loud enough to fill the room and scare two rather panicky dogs upstairs. You won't see the drivers themselves unless you take off the beige-colored tweed front grills.

There are five drivers inside the cabinet, and these small drivers should actually be directed not at the center of the room but at the wall. That way, the sound can bounce off the wall and spread around the room. If you've ever put an iPhone inside a plastic bowl the effect is fairly similar. That's not to say the Bose 901 is comparable to an iPhone in a bowl; just that it uses unique sonic qualities.

The Bose 901 is without any tweeters or woofers anywhere in the drivers. This means that neither the very high nor the very low frequency notes can be played without creating distortion.

If you're looking for the terminals at the back of the unit, and that is a perfectly reasonable place to expect them, then you'll be surprised to find they aren't there. There is a logic to the terminal's placement. It's to make it easier to thread the cord through the stand. The hourglass-shaped stands look nice enough, assuming they come with the after-market model you buy.

One thing you realize fast is this: it's basically impossible to get the stand to balance perfectly. This is because the speakers need the wire to operate, and that wire is fed through the stand. But since the wire has to pop out of the base of the stand in order to plug into the wall, the stand has to sit on top of the wire. If you're especially handy, you can make a little hole the wire can slip through.

If you don't want to bother with the stands at all, or you simply don't have them because they didn't come with the used set you bought, then you can probably find a spot for the speakers to sit somewhere in the living room. They're meant to be directed at the wall, but you can look around to find the best place for them. For this review, that place was right on top of my coffee table.

Altogether the unit weighs 7 pounds and the dimensions are 21.1 x 21.1 x 12.8 inches. They're available in brown and black, though I've mostly seen the brown units as I think these were more popular when they were still being manufactured.

How it Compares

We picked a couple of similar products available on the market to see how they compare.

Bose 901 Direct/Reflecting Speaker System - Walnut
  • Flagship Bose speaker delivers legendary performance from stereo components
  • Direct/Reflecting speaker technology reproduces much of the impact of a live performance
  • Nine full-range drivers for each speaker

Pros

  • Reasonably-priced
  • Time-tested
  • Can do well at mid-range

Cons

  • Power is lacking
  • Stand sits slightly wobbly
  • It has heavy distortion, especially at high and low decibels
B&W (Bowers & Wilkins) Bookshelf Speaker 606MB (Matte Black)...
  • Technical Features: Decoupled Double Dome Aluminium Tweeter / Continuum Cone bass / Midrange Flowport / Description:...
  • Frequency Range: -6 dB at 40 Hz and 33 kHz / Frequency Response: 52 Hz ~ 28 kHz ± 3 dB / Sensitivity: 88 dB spl...
  • Dimensions: (H) 345 mm 13.5 in) × (W) 190 mm (7.5 in) × (D) 300 mm (11.8 in) Cabinet Only / Net Weight: 6.9 kg (15.2...

I've seen the Bowers & Wilkins 606MB listed at around six times more expensive than the 901. That makes them far more expensive than the Bose 901 speakers, but I have to say, they blow away the competition in terms of quality. The sound has the quality of dark roast coffee. It's deep and dark but also somehow sharp.

I tested these out by playing "Chelsea Dagger" by The Fratellis, and the drum beats absolutely exploded out of the drivers. It gave the feeling of being in a raucous club in some brick basement with great acoustics. More impressive still, I found the sound quality changed as I moved around the room. I could pick up different instruments depending on where I was standing.

From an aesthetic point of view, the seamless beechwood cabinets look just gorgeous. The slightly rounded corners are a product of pressure. They're durably built and there's something about the streamlined wood looks somehow organic. Of course, it's the drivers flower out of the middle of the cabinets that matter.

The speakers themselves produce plenty of power, 8 ohms collectively. Still, on especially bass-heavy songs, like those you put on specifically to get thrashed by bass, the Bowers & Wilkins 606MB  came up short. It's not that you don't get excellent fidelity, but I think there are models available that can outdo the 606MB, especially ones with subwoofers.

Pros

  • Rich, deep tones
  • Sleek cabinets
  • Sturdy construction

Cons

  • Bass leaves something to be desired
  • Relatively high-priced
  • No subwoofers
Pioneer SP-BS22-LR Andrew Jones Designed Bookshelf Loudspeakers(7-1/8"...
  • 80 Watt Power Handling, Nominal Impedance 6 ohms
  • RF Molded Curved Cabinets to reduce internal standing waves
  • 4 inches Structured Surface Woofer with oversized magnets and vented pole piece for improved bass response

The Pioneer SP-BS22LK is a low-cost speaker system that gives you everything you need in a home theatre. It boasts "Thunderous Bass" from the SW-8MK2 subwoofer, and I honestly think the bass quality stands up well, especially for a low-priced unit.

It was a challenge trying to find space for all five speakers. It's just a rather bulky setup that requires some fine tuning to position the center channel somewhere that it won't get in the way. If you've got a flat screen and no display case to put the center channel and the bookshelf speakers on, then you'll probably need to get one in order to tie the whole thing together aesthetically. 

Like Henry Ford quipping about the Model-T, you can get the Pioneer SP-BS22LK in any color you like as long as it's black. This might not be a problem for some living rooms, but one does always wish for options.

The most important takeaway though is that the Pioneer SP-BS22LK speakers really do sound good. Really good. Not just for the price, though that is impressive enough, but compared with much more expensive units.

Though it's cheap, Pioneer didn't skimp on quality when designing these speakers. Yes, it's a pain to set up so many different speakers, but the crossover effect when they're working together is outstanding. There's a clarity of sound quality which is hard to match even among high-end speakers. For a test, I'd recommend listening to "Rhapsody in Blue" by George Gershwin.

Pros

  • Low price
  • High-quality sound
  • Includes a subwoofer

Cons

  • Hard to place in a room
  • No alternative color options
  • You need somewhere to put the center channel
SVS Prime Tower Speaker (Single) - Premium Black Ash
  • The Prime Tower is a reference-grade loudspeaker with pinpoint accuracy, exceptional tonal balance, effortless bass...
  • Cone material is extremely light and rigid and maintains a flat frequency response with excellent handling across the...
  • A proprietary SVS SoundMatch 3.5-way crossover enhanced by expertly refined topology ensures accurate frequency response...

The SVS Prime Tower shares a lot of similarities with the Pioneer SP-PK52FS. Both have the same two towers and a center channel, but the Prime Tower has no bookshelf speaker on each side and no subwoofer. The whole unit takes up a lot of space. Its dimensions are 36.6 x 8 x 11.6, so you might want to do some measurements before deciding to take it home.

Both the SVS Prime Tower and the Pioneer have a 1 inch tweeter, which is the component responsible for creating high-frequency sound waves. That probably doesn't sound terribly big, but since many other speakers try to get away with a 1/2 inch tweeter you'll notice the difference when you listen.

Both at mid-range and at higher decibels the Prime Tower performs well, with little or no distortion, and you won't get any screeching, nails-on-the-chalkboard high notes either thanks to the tweeter. You don't have much choice in terms of color, though you can choose between an ash finish and what they call "piano gloss." Both are more or less black, but piano gloss is my favorite. 

The SVS Prime Tower and Pioneer are also in the same price range. I'd say that for the money it's a great value, but the fact that it doesn't come with a subwoofer makes the Pioneer still come out ahead. The Bose 901 on the other hand? Not in the same category.

Pros

  • Competitively priced
  • 1" tweeter
  • Great range at high volumes

Cons

  • No subwoofer
  • No bookshelf speakers
  • Takes up a lot of space

Conclusion

While Bose has certainly given the world some outstanding audio achievements, the 901 speaker set just isn't one of them. Not only are they completely blown out of the water by more expensive models, but pound for pound they can't stand up against some cheaper alternatives either.

Audiophiles have often razzed the Bose 901s due to their lack of power and quality sound. In fact, they were panned by reviewers in their own time, and that time has now long passed. Since they've been improved upon by successive generations, you're probably better off going with another set of speakers that are still in production today.

Overall, the Bose 901 gets a rating of just two out of five stars. They aren't without their charms, and some aspects of the design are clever and innovative, but they probably aren't going to be worth taking home unless you can find an outrageous deal from a motivated seller.

If, for some reason, you're especially nostalgic, there's bound to be someone who'd be happy to let you take these speakers off their hands. Otherwise, if you do ever get the chance to listen to them, go ahead and judge the sound quality for yourself. You may come to a different conclusion or be forced to admit times change and that there are better speakers out there for less money.