Are Bose speakers worth the money?

There are many different speaker brands out there for us to deliberate upon and choose our favourite. One of the most well known and highly regarded brands is undoubtedly Bose, who have a massive marketshare in both the speaker market but also the headphone market too.

But if you’re looking for some new speakers, are Bose really worth the money? Or can you get the same experience for a cheaper price with another brand? That’s what we’re going to take a look at and find out.

Are Bose speakers worth the money?

The correct answer is that Bose speakers are definitely worth the money – but only for certain products. Whilst their portable Bluetooth speakers are definitely some of the best in the business, you might be able to find a better option for the same price if you’re looking for a home surround sound system.

This is, of course, all going to be opinion from working with speakers for years and owning many different sets, including the Bose brand. There are those that say they’re too expensive, which I’ll get into in a minute. But, let’s look at them a little closer to find out which areas they’re actually worth their cost.

Pros and Cons of Bose Speakers


Before deciding on your speaker system, check out this list of pros and cons to make sure that the brand is right for you.


One of the main advantages of opting for Bose speakers and headphones is that they’re a major brand, which means that your warranty is going to be in better shape than if you went for a cheap Chinese brand of speaker.
Bose generally have a wide variety of different options for you to choose from, which is one of the reasons why they’re so popular in the first place.
I don’t think that Bose speakers are bad quality! They’re definitely made to a good standard, so this is another good thing about them. But..


The main bad point about Bose speakers is, as you’ve probably guessed, they’re overpriced for what you’re getting. You just need to look at some of the other major brands out there to see just how expensive Bose are in comparison to their quality.
For audiophiles, the main problem with Bose is literally that they don’t sound as good as other speakers. Whilst they’re great at certain things, like design, the actual sound quality from the speaker isn’t great.
Generally, although Bose speakers perform fine, they don’t tend to use as high quality parts as other brands out there.

Areas Where Bose are Good

Whilst there’s a lot of criticism to Bose speakers in general, there are certain areas of audio that even the most knowledgeable audiophiles would say that it’s worth considering the brand. The main areas that I can think Bose excel in are;

Headphones – If you’re looking for a set of over-the-ear headphones, then it’s definitely worth your time checking Bose headphones out. They’re generally pretty expensive, but when you compare the sound quality to other options on the market, they blow many other brands out of the water (I’m looking at you, Beats by Dre).
Portable Bluetooth speakers – Although if I was looking for a full home theatre setup Bose wouldn’t be my first choice, there are some speakers that they make which are pretty good. Their portable Bluetooth speakers are a little bit more expensive than the cheapest on the market, but they tend to be of a decent quality. This is best seen with the Bose Soundlink series.
Docking Stations – Another area where I’d consider opting for a Bose branded speaker would be if I was looking for a docking station. These are designed with convenience in mind, and the sound quality is good enough in these sorts of devices.

Other Brands to Consider – Bose alternatives

Whilst I’m not out and out saying Bose speakers are bad (at all), they’re definitely pretty expensive for what you’re getting.

If you’re looking for a new home speaker setup, then here are some other brands that I’d definitely recommend that you check out;

  • Klipsch – If you want a full sound system in your home, then Klipsch is one of the first brands I’d look at. Their unique design ranges from fairly low budget all the way up to their Kilpschorn line.
  • Polk – On a tight budget? Polk is one of the bestsellers when it comes to low cost speakers. They’re inexpensive yet still of an above average quality.
  • Dali – This brand make some excellent bookshelf speakers and floorstanding speakers which can make up part of a home setup.
  • JBL –
  • Sonos – Probably the biggest competitor to Bose when it comes to full home theatre systems. They have the edge on Bose in some areas, especially their software, which is their best asset.
  • Yamaha – Another fairly reliable brand that has a wide range of speakers to choose from. They tend to range between a few hundred and a few thousand pounds in cost.
  • Axiom – A premium brand name that you won’t want to miss out if you’re looking for something powerful with high audio quality.

This isn’t an exhaustive list, and much of it really depends on exactly what you’re looking for. For a home theatre with good usability, then I’d tend to opt for a brand like Sonos, who probably has the best app for a home setup. See our Sonos vs Bose comparison for an extensive look at both brands.

In other areas, it might be worth checking out brands like Klipsch if you want higher quality. As always, Polk and JBL have some great budget friendly options.

Another brand that I recently reviewed and is really giving these other brands, including Bose, a run for its money is Edifier. They’ve been around in other markets for decades and are making fast inroads into the U.S., UK, and other western markets. I was really impressed by the sound of their Edifier R1700BTs bookshelf speakers, a sub $200USD speaker that punches above its weight class. Check out our detailed R1700BTs review if you have a moment.


All in all, nobody out there is saying that Bose speakers are bad (and if they are, then this isn’t strictly true!). All that most audiophiles are saying is that for the price that Bose charges, they aren’t quite good enough. And if you spent your money elsewhere, then you could likely pick up a far superior product.

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About Jon

Hey, I'm Jon. I'm an engineer by trade, so it makes sense that I'm obsessed with anything technology related! On the weekends, you can find me playing around with my computers or fixing something around the house. Feel free to leave a comment if you want to get in touch.

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