Bose SoundTouch 300 review On Black FRiday & Cyber Monday 2021
Sound bars are popular than ever before, but high-end versions have a concern: their small size means they battle to contend with traditional, larger loudspeakers. Companies such as for example Yamaha, Sony, Sonos and Bose, however, have discovered how exactly to use your room’s boundaries as their own private playgrounds. Black friday offers are great to way to save some bucks.
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With its “bigger than life” sound, the Bose SoundTouch 300 is not a traditional hi-fi component, but given the proper room conditions the sound it’s with the capacity of is gorgeously enveloping. It has among the widest sound stages we’ve have you ever heard and yet continues to be capable of reproducing the best possible of details. In comparison to its closest competition, the Sonos Playbar, the Bose pulls ahead regarding both sound stage and “you is there” detail.
Assuming you have no intention of shopping for a subwoofer, though, don’t buy this sound bar. Just like the Playbar, the SoundTouch is actually is a complete system that will come in “two easy payments of $699.” It could sound fine alone, but you’ll skip the deep hurty notes that the optional Acoustimass 300 sub may bring — for a supplementary $699.
As of this price level there are a good amount of options, like the excellent Sony HT-NT5, which includes a sub. But if you want a speaker that performs well with out a subwoofer then you might save yourself a couple of hundred bucks and get the Zvox SB500 instead.
The Bose SoundTouch 300 costs $699 in america, £599 in the united kingdom or AU$999 in Australia.
The SoundTouch 300 may be the prettiest sound bar we’ve observed in the CNET labs because the Definitive Technology W Studio. It has a tempered glass top and an understated mesh front with input LEDs in the very best left corner. The bar was created to be utilized on a tabletop or mounted on a wall and measures 38.5 inches wide by 2.25 inches high and 4.25 inches deep (97.8 by 5.7 by 10.8 cm). One potential way to obtain frustration is that the SoundTouch lacks any controls on the machine — neither power nor volume controls. The Sonos Playbar puts these buttons privately.
The remote that ships with the SoundTouch 300 is large and comprehensive, and somehow avoids “scientific calculator” syndrome. You need to be aware that some functions require the remote to work — including adding a subwoofer. If you lose your remote with this Bose you’re just likely to have buy a fresh one. For a linked device this inability to utilize the application rather than the remote puts it behind nearly every competitive product.
The SoundTouch 300 is a 3.0-channel sound bar that promises “bigger than life” sound because of its widening PhaseGuide technology. It posseses an onboard “QuietPort” that’s made to give better-than-normal bass regardless of the lack of another subwoofer.
The sound bar includes Bose’s SoundTouch Wi-Fi stereo system, which enables you to stream Spotify, Pandora and other services with out a loss in quality. SoundTouch is Bose’s undertake multiroom sound and works with using its standalone SoundTouch 10-and-up speakers. If you wish to go the Bluetooth route, the sound bar has that too.
The SoundTouch 300 includes HDMI in and an ARC-enabled output offering 4K pass-through, furthermore to both Dolby Digital and DTS decoding. Other ports include optical digital and a 3.5mm subwoofer out. Sadly there is no room for the 3.5mm input or a headphone connection.
The Bose Acoustimass 300 can be an optional wireless subwoofer made to accompany the SoundTouch 300 sound bar.
If you want an external sub, Bose also manufactures the matching Acoustimass 300 ($699/£599/AU$999), which include wireless pairing and a concise 12-inch square footprint.
Like its competition, Bose also enables you to add wireless surrounds for $299, £299 or AU$429 per pair. Bose calls them Virtually Invisible 300 speakers plus they are quite small — about 2 inches square. They feature a power brick/amp that connects without wires to the soundbar. You will have to run wires (included) between your brick and the speakers behind the room.
The SoundTouch 300 has hands-down the weirdest setup routine we’ve ever experienced — even managing to top the “Touch your Phantom” urgings of the Devialet speaker.
Like most receivers nowadays the SoundTouch includes a calibration microphone. Nothing weird there — except… it’s a headset. This headband device includes a microphone at the very top and is linked by an extended, thin wire to the trunk of the sound bar. To calibrate your device you must press a preset key and sit very still as tones play through the machine (trust us, it’s tough never to shop around at the sounds whizzing about your room). Then you’ll sit through this five times, in a different position every time, or it scolds you to go to somewhere new.
We tested the Bose SoundTouch 300 with and without the separate Acoustimass 300 and Virtually Invisible 300 speakers. As a primary comparison we used the Sonos Playbar with the Sonos Sub and a set of Play:3s as rears. We fed them both signals from the brand new Oppo UDP-203 Blu-ray player.
The Bose is with the capacity of very good sound quality, and its own standout characteristic is a superwide sound stage. When you wouldn’t expect this to be appropriate for music replay, it sounds equally as good with indie rock since it does with a revisionist western. Music and movies sound suitably immersive, particularly if you add surrounds and a sub.
We started things rolling with just the sound bar alone. We popped “Avatar” in the disc tray and pressed the Go button on the Thanator Chase. As Sam Worthington wanders through the underbrush of Pandora’s jungle we hear flies buzz about him as the scientists he’s sworn to safeguard bicker in the backdrop. When compared to Playbar, the Bose could better communicate dialog while also making an improved sense of the ambience of the alien world. But as the scene progressed, neither sound bar made enough bass to be convincing after the beastie attacked.
As a way to see just what a single (subwoofer-free) sound bar was with the capacity of, we then linked the rival Zvox SB500. It could also lack a sub nonetheless it subsequently destroyed both Bose and Sonos with a remarkably visceral performance. The Zvox’s bass had slam where in fact the others didn’t, but however dialog was properly elevated from the sonic background. As the Zvox doesn’t do wide effects — though it includes a fake surround mode — it wasn’t even missed in this comparison.
We then proceeded to attach the sub and rears of both Bose and Sonos systems to observe how they could handle the lobby sequence from “The Matrix.” While we enjoyed the width of the sonic image, in each case it had been the rears that basically tied both systems together. Both times we appreciated to be able to hear the bullet casings fall away in the trunk speakers. It really contributed to the sense of envelopment. Which was better? It had been too near call, but again it had been the Bose’s greater ambient detail that won through.
Comparing sub against sub here we discovered that the Acoustimass 300 was a bit more agile delivering the boom of the shotguns and the synth bass line that underpins the action. The Sonos sub was just a little tardy in comparison rather than as punchy or deep.
Nearly every sound bar can do home entertainment, however, so that isn’t really a challenge. To be able to really test the SoundTouch 300 we moved onto music. We tried the larger-than-life track “Yulunga (Spirit Dance),” which true to create filled the area with the sound of Lisa Gerrard’s alternately chanted and soaring vocals. With the Bose we felt that the shakers were from the walls themselves — even though we considered look at them.
Of course when you have stuff lining your own walls it’ll interfere with the result. We also discovered that moving back to the CNET listening room created an extremely phasey, confused sound.
With the Sonos, we also got wall-bouncing effects but needed to be very near to the machine — about 4 feet — and the consequences lacked the same occurrence and didn’t adhere to the walls when you considered look at them. Whenever we moved to a sensible 8 feet away — or in the same seated position as the Bose — they almost disappeared.
Most material, however, isn’t as extreme using its usage of hard left/right effects. Keeping the Sonos, “Frankie Sinatra” by The Avalanches sounded almost mono compared. Although the tuba’s bom-bom bassline sounded deep and full, and Chris Brown’s wilfully obnoxious rapping came through clearly.
The Bose wasn’t as overwhelming in the bass department, but MF Doom’s turn at the microphone was a bit more discernible compared to the Playbar had managed to get. Where on the Sonos the sound was one-dimensional the Bose made effects result from everywhere — mariachi horns out from the left wall, waves from above us and on the proper. It almost sounded just like a different song. We’d to check on that the surrounds have been turned off and even these were. Again not hi-fi but immersive in a brand new way.
The bottom line
The SoundTouch is a likable product with an enormous sound and attractive design, and it provides a amount of insight into material that the Playbar can’t. Having said that, it generally does not break sonic ground in the manner that others did before it. Yamaha’s YSP-1600 may also do room-filling effects, nonetheless it costs less and carries a sub. Furthermore, so far as “bass with out a sub” can be involved, the $400-$500 Zvox SB500 runs subsonic rings around the Bose.
As we said with the Sonos Playbar before it: This sound bar is very for individuals who curently have (Bose) products and want to increase multiroom hearing the living room. But anticipate to pay $1,700 to achieve the sound you want