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on June 29, 2013
Bose is known for expensive gear, so for $99, I would say these speakers give you the most sound for the money. Frankly I am astonished Bose could produce a $99 speaker that sounds so good, in view of their expensive speaker lineup.

A bit of background - I currently own the Bose Companion 3 series II, the Soundlink II and the previous version of Companion 2, the Series II. The Series III has better base than the Series II, and slightly better treble, but the Series II has better midrage. Both the Series II and Series III blows the Soundlink II (bluetooth speaker) out of the water. There is simply no comparison. The Series II is good for vocals, Jazz, Classical and the like. The Series III improves on this and sounds better on rock, pop and music with more bass. Of course none of these speakers can compare to the Bose Companion 3. The dedicated sub-woofer of the Companion 3 is orders of magnitude better in bass response, and the two satellite speakers has better high end as well.

Design wise it is very similar to the Series II with the same ports and controls, except it is now in black - which is good because it matches more laptops/PCs. The previous silver version is good but does look a bit out of place on an all black setup (I have black monitor, black laptop and black mouse).

The speaker cable length is just nice, as I do not want too long a cable length to clutter my desktop. Bose is designing this setup for laptops, not so much for desktop PCs.

Overall excellent product from Bose, and definitely well worth the $99!
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on December 4, 2013
I just installed these speakers on my HDTV, and they are outstanding. I have them in a 400 square foot room. The sound is outstanding! I am so impressed with them that I had to write my first ever review. They installed just like they would on my computer--very, very easily. I can't believe how amazing they are especially since they were not terribly expensive.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon June 28, 2013
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I've had a few different computer speakers over the years (HK soundsticks, Axiom Audiobytes, Logitech Z623, Audioengine A2) so I will do some comparisons later in this review. I spent some time with these Bose speakers listening to various music genres and TV programs.

SOUND QUALITY:
-Pretty good in all frequency ranges. There is a smooth sound quality when listening to music. They are not harsh or shrill. There is no overemphasis of treble or bass. Everything blends together well.
-There is surprisingly good bass for a 2.0 set. Nothing that will shake the room but enough to make a difference on your desk.
-The speakers are lacking a little bit of crispness and clarity in the high range where vocals and voices exist. But unless you are doing immediate A-B comparisons with other speakers, you would be hard-pressed to notice. They are not so lacking in crispness that you would call them muddled.
-You can play them loud enough to fill a large room without distortion.

DESIGN:
-These aren't showy speakers. There is no metal trim or glossy finish. They are minimalist with matte surfaces and look fine in an industrial, utilitarian sort of way. There is a slight upward angle of the speakers which helps direct the sound right at your ears and not bouncing off your desk.
-There is no on/off switch. You turn the volume dial all the way down which clicks to turn the speakers off.
-No LED's. That's a positive if you use these in a bedroom.
-No bass adjustments or any other adjustments for that matter.

CORDS:
-The computer audio out cable which connects to the right speaker is only 4 ft. A lot of people may need to buy a longer cable such as Cables to Go 3.5mm Male to Male Stereo Audio Cable
-The connecting wire between speakers is 6 ft.

COMPARISONS:
-I did A-B comparisons with the Logitech Speaker System Z623 which are priced in the same range. I was very impressed with the Logitech's and you can read my review there for more details.
-The Logitech's obviously have more thumping bass being a 2.1 system but you also have to deal with a big subwoofer. The Logitech high-end vocal clarity was superior to the Bose. But this difference is not huge and is only readily apparent if you are switching back and forth between the speakers. Overall, I prefer the Logitech's but would have no qualms with the Bose if I was looking for set without a subwooofer.
-The Bose are significantly superior to the Audioengine A2 and significantly inferior to the Axiom Audiobytes.

CONCLUSION:
-I've always cast a skeptical eye toward Bose products given their history of over-marketing. I was happy to find that Bose has delivered a nice, solid set here at a reasonable price. They sound good but not great and will be perfectly fine for most people as computer speakers. If you are looking for something of significantly better sound quality, you are probably going to be spending a lot more or going with a separate component setup.
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on October 31, 2014
After having tried several speakers for my iMac, I got my senses back and went ahead with the Bose. I'm not disappointed as always! Great rich sound, adequate bass, elegant design, and most importantly no distortion no matter how loud it gets. If you want a decent set of speakers for your computer and your budget is not that great, go ahead with these, you can't miss!
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Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Only two small complaints: there is no on/off light - and the power cord has a VERY large brick. I find the cords to be long enough; the power cord is 5 feet long and the cord joining the left and right speaker is 6 feet long. The audio cable can plug into either the audio jack on a desktop, or the headphone jack on a laptop. At first I thought they were bass-heavy until I adjusted the Audio Manager on my computer; I find the "Concert Hall" Environment and the "Club" setting on the equalizer (via ReakTek HD Audio Manager) to be the perfect balance of bass and treble. I notice minimal distortion even when the volume knob is cranked up as far as possible, which is amazing.

I've also used these completely separate from my computer; just plug your iPod, any MP3 player, even an old Walkman CD player into the Aux-In connection using the included audio cable and you can enjoy these outdoors as long as you have an electrical outlet.

These speakers have very good build quality just as other speakers in the Bose line. Highly recommended.
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on June 21, 2013
it is amazing how you got a very deep and balanced sound without a subwoffer. perfect for desktop even a low volume
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on June 7, 2014
UPDATE 7/19/2015 - After over a year with the speakers they are still going strong! Yet, I found myself in a Bose store the other day and purchased the more expensive Companion 20 speakers. Look below for my comparison of the two.

ORIGINAL REVIEW

I own a pair of bose QC 15 headphones which have spoiled me and made me discontent with the mediocre sound systems around my house. So, I wanted some bose speakers to connect to my wireless network at home via my airport express and airplay. Well, I am happy to say that these $100 Bose speakers sound GREAT! The sound is spacious, deep and CRISP. The high notes sing and one can feel the base.

ARE THEY LOUD ENOUGH?

Some reviewers complain that they do not get loud enough. I thought the same at first and then realized that my music was turned down at the source. Now, I have the volume all the way up on my iPad and then adjust the volume on the speakers themselves. I have to tell that they get extremely loud with no distortion. The volume only needs to be up half-way on the speakers for the volume to shake the room and tickle my eardrums.

ARE THE MIDS DECENT?

Just to clear-up another misconception - the highs and lows are reproduced extremely well. Both the high notes and the bass are VERY pleasing. Ragtime Piano, for example, sounds excellent on the speakers. The weakness is indeed with the mids. Nothing bad, but the speakers do seem to equalize (True Space technology) in such a way where the mids do suffer. For example, Josh Groban's incredible voice looses some of its magic on these Bose. The same is true on my QC 15 headphones, by the way. For me, this is a minor thing that I immediately tolerate because the other sound strengths more than compensate.

SHOULD YOU PURCHASE THESE?

Indeed, buy these now. You will not regret your purchase and will feel that they are well worth $100. Especially if you are new to Bose, then you will love this entry level product.

_________

BOSE COMPANION 20 vs COMPANION 2 Serries III

The wonderful Bose Companion 2 Series 3 computer speakers have graced our home ever since they first came out. We have really enjoyed them. Not at the computer but instead for inconspicuous bookshelf speakers in a small room. the Speakers were souced wirelessly via an Apple Airport Express router and AirPlay. Though they were great for this function, recently I have been itching for an upgrade. So, the other day I visited a Bose store and came home with the larger and more expensive Companion 20 speakers. So, how do they compare? Here are some detailed impressions...

SOUND QUALITY OVERVIEW

The less expensive Companion 2 held up pretty well when first compared side-by-side with the 20s. In fact, at lower volumes the two speakers sounded nearly identical. After a while, the supiorority of the Companion 20's became clearly evident. They are much more rich and crisp than the 2s. After hours of listening to the new speakers I switched back to the 2's and they sounded tinny and shril. Especially at moderate and higher listening volumes.

HIGHS and LOWS

First about the lows. Again initial impression led me to think the base sounded nearly identical on both speakers. It wasn't until I played bass heavy music that I noticed the difference. The 20s bass is much tighter and gives a cleaner thump. In their promotional material Bose states that when one walks into a room where 20's are playing they will look around for a base module. This is true. Especial when the rear of the speakers are placed near a wall or a corner. My Companion 2s are spread nearly three feet apart on a bookshelf. Each speaker is slightly angled towards eachother with the backs up against the corners of the shelf. This is the sweet spot for the room. As to the high, the 20s are also the clear leader. Female voices SHINE on these silver speakers. High notes on the 2s by comparison sound like they are distant as though the singer is behind a closed door. In general every musical detail (highs, lows and mids) are better detailed and distinct. Play a song with complex instrumentation, for example, and you will distinctly hear most every nuance of each instrument. On the Companion 2 speakers similarly complex tracs sounded blended together where the details were muted or lost.

BUILD QUALITY

I thought the 2s were well built but, oh my goodness, they look like toys next to the aluminum 20 speakers! The quality becomes especially apparent when you feel the weight and heartiness of the build. This is best showcased by just the control module on the 20. The knob feels substantial and turns smoother than any dial I have ever used. Really, you must try it!. This buttery smoothness is balanced absolutely perfectly with proper resistance and responsiveness. The module further boasts a touch sensitive on/off "button" which is also amazingly responsive and instant. In short, looking at the Companion 20s and controlling them are just as pleasant as listening to them! The 2s are solidly built but their look and feel is only average.

FURTHER COMPARISONS

I own several othe Bose products including he Bose sound link mini, the QC20 in-ear headphones, and the Bose QC15 over-the-ear headphones. So, how does the sound of the Companion 20s compare to these other products?

Soundlink Color - The 20s win easily. This is remarkable because I think the Color sounded better than the Companion 2's eventhough the it is a small Bluetooth speaker compared to a wired 2 speaker system. The color has better clarity than the 2s and overall boast a higher fidelity. The 2s did have better stereo separation (obviously) and can play at a higher volume. On the other hand, my new Companion 20s just sound better than the Soundlink Color in every single aspect.

Quiet Comfort 20 - The similarity between the Quiet Comort 20 headphones and the Companion 20 computer speakers comes in warmth of sound. Both boast a warmth that is very pleasing and Senheiser like. This is where the comparisons end. The QC headphones win in the area that they sound a little more natural and balanced. Though, the Companion 20s beat the QC20s in crispness and detail. When I have a choice between the two, I enjoy listening to the speakers over the QC20 in-ear headphones.

Quiet Comfort 15 - Now, here is where the Companion 20s begin to fall short. The best sound I have ever heard comes from my QC15 headphones. They are astonishingly impressive. These companion 20's get me much closer to that great sound quality. In fact, the Companion 20s sound warmer and a tad richer than the QC15! Unfortunately, the music is not as detailed nor crisp. I do find myself debateing whether or not to enjoy music via the QC15 headphones or via the Companion 20 computer speakers. By comparison the Companion 2's always sounded decent but I never purposely chose to go listen to them over any of the other Bose products that I own.

CONCLUSION

Though Companion 2s have seen series of re-iterations through the years, the Companion 20s are still the original speakers first introduced in 2011. To me, the fact that a Companion 20 series 2 does not yet exist hints that there is not much to improve with the current speaker. Give these speakers a serious try and I think you will agree.

PS - A note about source volume. The manual for the 20s instructs to place the source volume at a maximum of 80 percent. This is key! Use the control pod to crank up the volume. There will be no distortion not even when turning the dial all the way up. With the 2s the sound the sound improved with the source volume at 100 percent and the knob on the speakers at slightly over half. All this to say that the more expensive 20's do a better job of signal processing and improving the source signal into that distinctive rich and Bose sound. By the way, the 20s top volume is about twice that of the 2s.
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on April 8, 2015
I'll just come right out and say that I'm disappointed in these speakers. I read the reviews and paid particular attention to the bad ones before I purchased. It's my experience that people will often give a bad review without giving a product much of a chance. I took this into consideration and weighed the good with bad. This time, I was wrong to do that. I'll be up front and tell you that I own a air of Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 THXs with a sub, and they're phenomenal. I wasn't expecting the Bose to keep up with Klipsch with a sub, but I was expecting a decent sound at low to medium volumes. Particularly, low volumes. Unfortunately, these are not good at any volume. Yes, there's plenty of bottom end, but no matter how I eq these speakers, they're muddy sounding. I bought these to replace a pair that came with a desktop that I purchased (probably a $35 to $45 pair), and the only difference I can hear is that there are more highs and more bottom end. In this case, more is not better. I never thought the day would come in which I could honestly say that a pair of Bose speakers (at any price) would be muddy. I don't know what the specs on the amp in the laptop I'm using are, but it's powerful and clean enough to drive the crap out of my Klipsch system. That leaves the blame for poor quality sound directly on the speakers. That also means that I'm sending these back and the hunt continues. I gave these 3 stars because I know that I have an extremely critical ear and someone else my not find these to be as bad as I've stated. However, I have definitely heard no name speakers in Wal-Mart for $30 that sounded every bit as good. Stay away.
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on September 11, 2013
I have a pair of Logitech Z320 speakers I was looking to upgrade. I did some research and decided to give these a try. Here is my comparison between the two.

Bose Companion 2 series III: More bass and treble. They had a weird almost reverb type of effect that almost muddied the sound some. Not really noticeable for an untrained ear but I noticed it. I like the headphone jack in front. The 1/8" cable to go to the computer is way short. If you have your computer on the left side then this cable is way too short (the right speaker has all the hookups in the back so your pc would have to be on your right side for it to reach). Why they could not make it a little longer I don't know. They seem well built for being plastic. When the volume gets past 3/4 the music cuts out in a strange way,it doesn't distort but cuts out. No light on the front to let you know if its on or not.

Logitech Z320: More mid range,less bass and treble. 1/4 the price of the Bose. No weird reverb effect. When the volume gets past 3/4 it distorts and does not cut out. A little less loud then the Bose,the Bose are not way louder as you might expect. Orange light on front when on. Headphone jack on the side of the right speaker. A little cheaper made plastic.

Sound wise I would give the Bose the edge but not for 4 times the price. Its only $100 but you can get the logitech for about $26 and they are not that much worse. I have some studio monitors that cost $500 each so I have a pretty good reference.

MY vote? Logitech Z320 overall

Update. I ended up getting the creative T20 speakers. They are much better overall speakers. Good balance of bass and treble without the weird reverb effect or cutting out. I still have my Z320's and use them for outside mp3 player listening.
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on August 25, 2013
Have been using the companion 2 series 2 speakers for several years and was very happy with them. When I saw the series 3 at a local store I decided to see if they were any better than the series 2. They are exactly the same size. They are now black, rather than gray. I like the black more than the gray. The input jacks are now mini jacks rather than the RCA jacks on the series 2, which is an improvement. The series 3 can be turned off with the volume control, the series 2 had no on/off control. It was on all the time. The series 3 draws so little power I leave them on all the time anyway. NOW THE BIG QUESTION: DO THEY SOUND BETTER THAN THE SERIES 2? In my opinion, they sound exactly the same as the series 2 they replaced. So unless you want any of the features new to the series 3, I would recommend saving your money. The series 2 was a great product, and so is the series 3. Bose makes outstanding products.
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