on September 20, 2012
Amazon - Very Easy to order, free and fast shipping!
BOSE - Great Sound Quality. Once you hear through BOSE, you cant really go back. Cons: Products seem overpriced and take advantage of brand marketing.
Companion 2 Speakers - Just the perfect set of speakers for my laptop. I listen to all my music on itunes and watch movies using this. I was deciding between this, Harmon Kardon Sound Sticks and Klpisch. Although this set does not have a subwoofer, it more than makes for for it in pure sound quality. I have been a big admirer of BOSE products and this is a solid product for the price.
IE2 Earphones - These have awesome sound quality and sturdy enough where the earphones do not fall out. Great for an active lifestyle. I have the QC15s and I will trade off between the two during my travels.
Overall Good quality product and fast shipping.
My current headphones are the Bose® QuietComfort® 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling® Headphones. The QC-15 headphones are very comfortable, the best I've ever worn and the noise cancellation is excellent. However, this is the first time I have owned Bose ear bud style headphones. Normally I don't like to wear in-ear headphones, but these have considerably better audio than the typical in-ear headphones. They supply two extra sets of what they call Stay-Hear silicone tips, which conform to the size of different people's ears. The set that came standard seems to conform to my ears just fine. One reviewer commented there wasn't much noise cancellation. I don't think that Bose even claims to provide noise cancellation or even noise isolation for that matter. But Bose does claim these ear buds provide deep low notes. I could not detect any low tones myself. Maybe they are comparing to other ear buds. But the mid-range is very good - in fact, excellent overall sound. The wires are just too short in my opinion. I'm sitting at my desk and I actually had to move the desktop speaker closer to me so that the ear bud cable could reach the front headphone output connector. It seems the cable length was designed primarily for a cell phone or MP3 player in your pocket.
The Companion 2 speaker system is quite compact, which is the Bose speaker tradition. The speakers have a very pleasing bright midrange sound characteristic of Bose speakers. I was using a pair of Monsoon ribbon speakers that I thought sounded good. But after a day of using the Bose speakers, I just cannot even imagine returning to my old speakers. One shortcoming is the Bose speakers are rather small and low end bass frequency response is largely absent.
To compensate, I connected a spare powered subwoofer I own. I used two RCA connector splitter cables to connect to the subwoofer. The supplied cable that connects the Bose speakers to the computer is way too short. I had to purchase an extension cable since my desktop computer needs to be on the left side of my desk and the right Bose speaker obviously has to be on the right side of my desk. However, the cable that connects the right and left speaker is actually quite long, plenty of distance between speakers. With the addition of the powered subwoofer, I now have full range frequency response.
Another nice thing about these Bose speakers is their size and weight. If you plan an extended trip somewhere, it is actually practical to pack these speakers in your luggage. The speakers support worldwide voltages and power frequency. So you can connect these speakers to your laptop computer and have great sound just about anywhere you go in the world. I am quite pleased with this combination speaker bundle. I believe you will be pleased, too.
on September 27, 2012
Bose has bundled two distinct products together in this deal. One set of Companion 2 computer speakers, and a set of IE2 audio headphones that come packaged separately in the box. Bose makes great sounding products, and these are no exception.
The Companion 2 Computer speakers are a great upgrade to any computer's internal speakers. They are small, and don't take up much space on my desk. I have them attached to my desktop iMac computer. You could also use them for a laptop, iPad or portable device, but they are not meant to be portable speakers. They must be plugged into an electrical outlet, and are very easy to setup. SImply plug into your computer (or other device) and they are ready to go. They have a separate volume control located on the right speaker, and dual ports to allow you to plug in two devices at once. The sound is clear, crisp and full. Amazing bass sound from such small speakers! I am very happy with the sound quality.
The IE2 "headphones" are meant to replace the earbuds you might use with an MP3 player, mobile phone, or other portable device. I got them to use with my iPhone, iPad, and MacBook laptop. Other reviewers mentioned a lack of "noise cancellation"... let's make it clear that these are NOT intended for that purpose. That is clearly stated on the package, and was NOT listed as a feature on the information page. If you need noise cancellation, these are not the headphones for you. But they are great sounding earphones with a great new design I haven't seen before. They have silicone tips that keep the "buds" in your ear during exercise. There are three sizes of tips included to fit different ears. It took me just a few minutes to become accustomed to the feel in my ear. They stayed in properly during a 90 minute brisk walk, without having to readjust at all... something I had to do often with my old earbuds. The acoustic design gives a rich sound with more clarity than I've heard in other similar products. These are a major upgrade in sound from the earbuds that came with my iPod. They also have a built-in mic for use with your phone when listening to music. Siri responded to my commands with the headphones in place, and I was able to make phone calls easily. The one drawback, no button built in to the cord to answer calls or initiate actions... you must access the phone to answer calls or give commands to Siri. A carry case is included, which some may like, but it's a little too big for my purposes.
If you need both products, this bundle is a great deal... if not, you can purchase them separately. I'm very happy with both!
I can't really write enough about what a good value this bundle is. I had always been one to discredit Bose products as nothing more than Logitech products with a fancier name slapped on them, but after using this bundle, my opinion of Bose has taken a total 360. The speakers are the best thing I've ever heard from speakers that size, and actually better than any bigger speakers that I've ever owned as well. They produce a very deep base, and unbelievably crisp sound, wayy better than anything I've ever owned in the past. I had to upgrade my Spotify subscription to Spotify Plus to get the upgraded sound, as I could actually tell the difference with these speakers. Another benefit is that they get so loud, that I can turn them all the way up, and have a party in any room of the house without having to move them. I was SHOCKED how loud they got.
As for the other part of the bundle, I basically just consider that a bonus as the speakers alone are worth the asking price. The headphones are not the best I've ever used, but are definitely not bad. The overall sound quality is superb, but the bass is a little lacking (in my opinion). Also, I prefer the traditional earbuds that go in your ears as opposed to this style. Nevertheless, they stay on very well, and do indeed sound good. They aren't anywhere near as loud as the speakers, but that's probably a good thing for your ears!!
Overall, if you're in the market for a nice set of computer speakers, I highly recommend these. It seems weird that there's no subwoofer, but after hearing them, trust me, no subwoofer necessary!! Feel free to post any questions on the product, and I'll get back to you as soon as I can!
on January 20, 2013
These were purchased as an x-mas gift to my sister. I've listened to the headphones and comp speakers and really enjoyed their sound. If you want a lot of bass, consider larger speakers or the ones that come with a powered sub.
Ordering from Amazon was quick and easy and will do so again.
I love these headphones! They are the most comfortable headphones I have ever owned. They don't block out outside noises as much as all the other ear buds I've used but I find that is a good thing so I am not totally unaware of what is going on around me. You have the option to chose from 3 different sized ear bud inserts. The inserts are pliable & gentle to the ears. The sound quality is great! I use the nice little carry case to store the headphones in when not in use to protect them & keep them clean. They have a great feature that not all ear buds have & that is a little clip to help contain the cord. It holds very well. I typically attach it to my collar. I noticed that If I do not use the clip, the slight weight from the cord tugs at my ears & it is uncomfortable, making the clip a must. Bose really figured out just what was needed to make using a pair of ear buds a comfortable experience. Finally I don't mind wearing my headphones all day long!
The speakers were a little bit of a let down. They sound really good, but not the kind of sound quality I expect from a Bose product. Also you cannot turn them off. You can only turn them down. This is the first set of computer speakers I've ever had that didn't have an On/Off. You need to plug the speakers into a power strip you can turn on & off or pull the plug on them or do nothing if you don't care about vampire loads. I am unsure if these are energy vampires, but suspect they might be because even when turned all the way down & not in use while plugged in to a power source they hummed. This was driving me crazy. I tried removing & reinserting the various connections to no avail. This went on for several weeks. Now it seems to have stopped. It's an oddity I cannot figure out.
This is my first Bose product and I have seen their commercials for the last 20 years. So, maybe my expectations were too high.
This is really two products bundled together. (When you open the package, you will see two distinct packages, the speakers in one box and the earphones in one of those frustating plastic boxes.) These are also available seperately.
I have had a chance to use the earphones the most so I will start with them. At first sight you will think that they look weird. These are not earbuds that rest in your ear canals. They have a special design that allows the earphone to "float" above the ear canal. Because of this each earphone (L and R) are specifically designed for side only. At first they feel a little odd but I got quickly used to that.
As for performance, that is where I have an issue. Since they do not fit into the ear but on top of the ear, there is very little noise cancellation. I first tried it with my PC with a movie. I had the TV on at normal sound level. When I started the movie on the PC, I heard very little of the TV. This morning I used it on with my portable DVD player on the train. This is where I was very disappointed. With earbuds, I normally only hear the stonger sounds - the train and the PA. But with these earbuds, I heard all ambient noises. Although I did clearly hear the movie I was watching. At lunch time I decided to test it at a restaraunt and again I could hear all the ambient noises around me. (With earbuds, most of the ambient noise is cancelled.)
I will admit, that from a health point of view, this is probably better for your hearing in the long run. Because of this I will give the earphones 3+ stars.
on January 16, 2013
The speakers are "Bose" that should say it all. The headphones also are wonderful- what is amazing is that they seem like just ordinary, nothing special ear buds until you put them on and then WOW! Shall we say they are just "music to your ears" The headphone case is excellent. I'd buy one for all my buds.
1. It's a Bose
2. Relatively easy to set up even for a non-technical person
3. As would be expected, great sound
4. I didn't expect the ear buds to be comfortable with that funny looking rubbery plastic thingy that fits into your outer ear, but I was wrong (using the smallest size - it comes with three sizes) Plus, they don't fall out of your ears if you make sudden movements.
5. Control for volume and the audio jack are on the same speaker, so easily kept within reach
6. Sleek modern look
7. Not designed for noise reduction, so you can still be aware of what's going on around you.
1. No "off" position - the volume can only be turned down, but not off
2. Speakers are a little on the large side if you're limited for space on your desk - just over 7" tall, 3" wide and just about 6" deep
3. Ear bud case is nice, padded and zippered, with Bose logo, but is too big to fit in your pocket. My iPhone actually fits comfortably inside the case.
4. Ear bud packaging requires a chainsaw and jaws of life to open
Overall, a good acquisition for me as my computer speakers went kaput some time ago, and this is way better.
Amanda Richards, January 1, 2013
The Bose Companion 2 Speakers may be compact in size but they are not lightweight. The Right speaker weighs 2 lbs and 2.5 ounces while the Left speaker weighs 1 lb and 13oz. The Right speaker is where everything connects to. These were weighted individually while connected together with all the cables connected at the back. The speakers are around 21cm at their tallest, around 8cm wide each, and around 15-16cm deep, without measuring any cables that might be connected at the back. Those add to the depth depending on what type of cables you use.
The Speakers have two sets of RCA audio inputs (red and white) at the back. They can play audio from both sources at the same time. If you are a mix-master, this may be a nice plus, for example, you can play an audiobook and soft classical music at the same time, as background music to the audiobook. You have to adjust the sound levels at the source, the speakers don't offer any individual source adjustments.
One word of caution when switching audio playback between two different sources - make sure you test the audio levels of each device you connect because the speakers do not automatically level the inputs. For example, I have an older DVD player that I use as a CD player, and the output from that one is much louder than anything else I have. So if I don't manually turn down the Speakers volume, the sound is likely going to wake up the dead (and the sleeping neighbors).
One strangeness with these is that there is no OFF button. You can turn the volume all the way down, but there's no on/off button. There are no lights on the speakers. These are AC powered only. There is no battery. No bluetooth.
The sound is much better than standard computer speakers, which is what one would expect considering the price differences. Obviously they won't replace a full audio system, but they can be a practical system, especially if space is at a premium. They are marketed as computer speakers, but you can connect anything you like that has RCA audio output or audio output that can be used with cables that convert to RCA output. In addition to Windows computers, using standard RCA red and white cables, I used it with a Blu-Ray player, DVD player, Cable/DVR box and the Roku box. The Roku box has various music channels, so you can use it in this fashion to play music without having a TV turned on. Using 3.5mm to RCA cables, I also used it with an iPod, mp3 players, various Android devices, Samsung Chromebook, the headphone output of a TV.
Speaking of space, the AC adapter is a hog, it takes up three slots in a standard power strip. It uses one slot, but it partially covers/blocks the slots to its left and right, making them unusable.
The speakers have an earphone output on the right speaker, below the Volume knob and the Bose logo. This is a standard headphone output and it works with the include headphones or any other. If you are using these late at night and don't want to unplug things from the computer or the back of the speakers, and don't want to wake up the sleeping, you can connect the base of a wireless RF headphone set to the earphone output of the Bose speakers and listen through those.
You can also adjust the volume of the Bose headphone output using the volume knob on the speakers. The speakers are typically louder than headphones, so if you are blasting music with the headphones, test/lower the volume when you unplug them.
The box includes the Speakers, the AC adapter, and a 3.5mm to RCA audio cable. Other 3.5mm to RCA audio cables and RCA cables work as well. All cables are removable except for the cable on the Left speaker that connects the Left speaker to the Right speaker. Everything on the Right speaker can be disconnected.
The IE2 earphones are very ergonomic. The webbed Stay Hear tips are very good at keeping the earphones on your ears without the earphones penetrating deep in your ears. This is especially good for prolonged listening sessions. The earphones don't need to get a seal. This for general purpose home and office use. I did not use these during exercise. The sound is pretty good for general purpose usage (music, audiobooks, podcasts). I am not an audiophile, so keep that in mind, but the combination of comfort and reasonably good sound is the plus for the IE2s.
The IE2 headphone cord has a couple of adjustments - you can adjust where the L and R cables split (about 10 inches of leeway) and you can optionally attach a clothing clip. Also included are Stay Hear tips in Small and Large (the Medium is installed) along with a Bose branded carrying case.
This is a bundle, so it might be of interest if you are looking for both a set of speakers and a set of earphones. The Bose price is at a premium compared to some other brands. Usability and flexibility is a plus for Bose, especially the webbed Stay Hear tips on the earphones. There are plenty of other brands out there, and I haven't compared them all, so, as always, it depends on what you want/need and what your highest priorities are.
The speakers and the IE2 earphones arrive together in a box, but the earphones are individually packaged in their own packaging, and wrapped in a see-through plastic. The IE2 packaging also has a dot seal at the bottom that has to be cut in order to open the IE2 package. The Speakers come with their own packaging as well. So if you are a gift giver, you could buy the bundle and turn it into two gifts for two different people. This is based on the packaging I received in the Fall of 2012. I don't know if it may change in the future.
Documentation-wise, there is a Companion 2 owner's guide with instructions in English, Spanish and French. There is also an additional sheet with corrections to the owner's guide, available in each of those three languages.