Bose 700 vs. Sonos Beam - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 24 Old 11-15-2018, 06:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Bose 700 vs. Sonos Beam

For marriage reasons, I needed small white speakers and a white soundbar for music primarily (I know, I know) and movies second. I have a large den with an open floor plan (den opens to dining room, foyer and kitchen). Budget was $2,000. My options were basically limited to Sonos and Bose.

I purchased the Bose 700 with 700 sub and surround speakers ($1800). I also purchased two Sonos Play:1 speakers, a Sonos Beam and a Sonos Sub ($1300).

I set them up, tuned them and played some tunes through them so I could have a side by side comparison (I did not do any movie or TV testing). Sub and speaker placement was identical and I switched between apps while listening to the same song to compare. The results were eye opening.

I fully expected the Sonos Beam to be noticeably worse due to size and price point. Not the case. I had two people listen with me and both preferred the Sonos over the Bose (in tests with and without the surround speakers).

The Bose could get louder, but at the volume I typically listen, the Sonos had a more accurate reproduction of the sound. The Bose soundbar just sounded like one big mid-range speaker and you could easily sense the sound was being manipulated by the software (DAC?). Also, the Sonos Sub was just as good, if not better than the Bose. Another surprise, IMO.

The one advantage the Bose had (aside from loudness) was that the soundstage was considerably larger, which may be a bigger deal for movies and surround effects.

One other thing I will say is that the Bose set up had some glitches (as is apparently typical with Bose) while the Sonos setup was quick and flawless.

The other notable thing is that the Bose could not handle Airplay. I've read that it will handle Airplay 2 in 2019 (via software update?), but I thought that meant that only Airplay 1 features would be supported. Apparently not. The only way to play music on the Bose is through TV, optical, or their limited music service offerings in their app.

Finally, I heard that the Sonos Beam is going on sale for Black Friday for $350 and that the Sub will be $600, so I will save another $150 when I ask Best Buy to price match in a week.

I am glad I did this test because I was leaning toward Sonos (due to price) but was going to go with Bose if the sound was MUCH better. I learned that it was Sonos that was actually better. Very happy with my purchase.

Oh, and for those wondering how my system compares to a real subwoofer and speaker setup (i.e. passive, wired, etc.), you leave a lot of sound on the table by going with small wireless speakers. But with the easy to use apps, quick set up and small, white speakers that the wife approves, its a compromise I can easily live with and still enjoy my movies and music.

Hope this helps.
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post #2 of 24 Old 11-21-2018, 09:18 AM
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FYI, Bestbuy will not price match any items from Black Friday whether you bought it prior to Black Friday or not. I tried to price match when Sonos Beam was on early access sale they won't do it. You would have to return it and re-buy it in with reduce price.
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post #3 of 24 Old 12-24-2019, 05:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dandaman19 View Post
For marriage reasons, I needed small white speakers and a white soundbar for music primarily (I know, I know) and movies second. I have a large den with an open floor plan (den opens to dining room, foyer and kitchen). Budget was $2,000. My options were basically limited to Sonos and Bose.

I purchased the Bose 700 with 700 sub and surround speakers ($1800). I also purchased two Sonos Play:1 speakers, a Sonos Beam and a Sonos Sub ($1300).

I set them up, tuned them and played some tunes through them so I could have a side by side comparison (I did not do any movie or TV testing). Sub and speaker placement was identical and I switched between apps while listening to the same song to compare. The results were eye opening.

I fully expected the Sonos Beam to be noticeably worse due to size and price point. Not the case. I had two people listen with me and both preferred the Sonos over the Bose (in tests with and without the surround speakers).

The Bose could get louder, but at the volume I typically listen, the Sonos had a more accurate reproduction of the sound. The Bose soundbar just sounded like one big mid-range speaker and you could easily sense the sound was being manipulated by the software (DAC?). Also, the Sonos Sub was just as good, if not better than the Bose. Another surprise, IMO.

The one advantage the Bose had (aside from loudness) was that the soundstage was considerably larger, which may be a bigger deal for movies and surround effects.

One other thing I will say is that the Bose set up had some glitches (as is apparently typical with Bose) while the Sonos setup was quick and flawless.

The other notable thing is that the Bose could not handle Airplay. I've read that it will handle Airplay 2 in 2019 (via software update?), but I thought that meant that only Airplay 1 features would be supported. Apparently not. The only way to play music on the Bose is through TV, optical, or their limited music service offerings in their app.

Finally, I heard that the Sonos Beam is going on sale for Black Friday for $350 and that the Sub will be $600, so I will save another $150 when I ask Best Buy to price match in a week.

I am glad I did this test because I was leaning toward Sonos (due to price) but was going to go with Bose if the sound was MUCH better. I learned that it was Sonos that was actually better. Very happy with my purchase.

Oh, and for those wondering how my system compares to a real subwoofer and speaker setup (i.e. passive, wired, etc.), you leave a lot of sound on the table by going with small wireless speakers. But with the easy to use apps, quick set up and small, white speakers that the wife approves, its a compromise I can easily live with and still enjoy my movies and music.

Hope this helps.
Thanks - that was a very informative review. I am surprised that we don’t get more talk of comparing the Bose 700 system to the Sonos Beam/Playbar systems.
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post #4 of 24 Old 12-29-2019, 04:03 PM
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Just bought a Sonos Beam & so far very impressed. Used a Amazon wall mount & looks great mounted under my tv.
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post #5 of 24 Old 12-30-2019, 09:43 AM
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Anyone else test test Sonos against Bose 700?

Sony A9G 77
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post #6 of 24 Old 12-31-2019, 05:53 AM
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Since there does not seem to be many comparisons or at least feedback of the Bose 700 system to the Sonos Playbar/Beam system, I ordered the Bose last night and will provide feedback to hopefully help others too.

It just amazes me there is not more talk about these two systems. Maybe there is and I just can’t find it. Strange...
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post #7 of 24 Old 12-31-2019, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GregF2 View Post
Since there does not seem to be many comparisons or at least feedback of the Bose 700 system to the Sonos Playbar/Beam system, I ordered the Bose last night and will provide feedback to hopefully help others too.



It just amazes me there is not more talk about these two systems. Maybe there is and I just can’t find it. Strange...


Keep us posted


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post #8 of 24 Old 01-05-2020, 07:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GregF2 View Post
Since there does not seem to be many comparisons or at least feedback of the Bose 700 system to the Sonos Playbar/Beam system, I ordered the Bose last night and will provide feedback to hopefully help others too.

It just amazes me there is not more talk about these two systems. Maybe there is and I just can’t find it. Strange...
Mainly bc they are both over priced and not much better then the comp
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post #9 of 24 Old 01-05-2020, 09:48 AM
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From a movie listening standpoint I think that JBL 5.1 and Polk Magnifi Max SR beats both of them...
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post #10 of 24 Old 01-05-2020, 03:10 PM
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Mainly bc they are both over priced and not much better then the comp
I ended up keeping the Sonos Beam, Sub and Sonos One Gen 2 speakers. Not sure why you think that whole combo is overpriced as total with tax was about $1050. I got the Black Friday Costco deal for the Beam, which was $192 (includes tax). Not sure how anything can come close to beating that, especially at that price...

Sub is great and well worth it and the rears make the system complete. Could not tell any difference compared to the Bose 700 system. Especially when it is at least $800 more. I will upgrade to the Playbar, if that ever gets upgraded, as I do think sounds some what better than the Beam, but with the old tech and more money, it was not worth it.

I agree the Bose is overpriced. Especially the 700 rears.

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post #11 of 24 Old 01-05-2020, 03:12 PM
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Originally Posted by blue comet View Post
From a movie listening standpoint I think that JBL 5.1 and Polk Magnifi Max SR beats both of them...

Have you heard the GBL 5.1 compared?


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post #12 of 24 Old 01-05-2020, 04:41 PM
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Not beam related but I"m impressed with my playbar and 2 play 1's

Sony 65inch 900F, Apple TV4k, Xbox one S, sonos 5.1,Marantz pm7000n, kEFLS50
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post #13 of 24 Old 01-11-2020, 02:58 PM
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I have a full atmos 5.1.2 setup however for general tv viewing the tv audio was just pants.

So I looked at both Sonos and Bose soundbar options and went for the 700 Bose with sub.

I thought both systems sounded clear and crisp with good tight base however for watching Netflix or prime as well as the news on tv1 the Bose provided a wider fuller soundstage. The Bose has two side firing speaker tubes which do a pretty decent job of throwing and mimicking a 3.1 system. They do have good left and right separation.

In addition the Bose linked in really well with my home HEOS set up and had Alexa... which amused the kids who love the beat box and chewie and also enabled my missus to listen to radio without hunting for a remote...

One month in and we love the Bose. Easy to set up and does exactly what it says on the tin. No need for surrounds and atmos etc on the bar as if we really need this then ...the home theatre is just a click away (as is our projector and 100” screen).

Only downsides are :

1) I had to ask Bose tech support to send me an IR blaster to communicate with my Sony tv through their universal remote. A known issue but the tech support sent me one overnight post for free. It works a treat now.

2) the remote backlight doesn’t stay on for very long and can’t be altered. It does however work really quite well and feels nice in the hand!

3) initial set up had some teething issues with CEC but then who doesn’t.. never been an issue since.

Overall for watching tv/ Netflix general use and casual radio playback or picking up music from my home NAS it’s pretty solid. As well as for PlayStation gaming. I give it a solid 8/10 and would recommend it to those that don’t mind the price tag. However if you are comparing Bose and Sonos then you don’t mind the price tags anyway.

If you want to turn this in to a 5.1 you can add wireless surrounds but from what I have seen and heard the surrounds kind of do the job in small medium sized spaces but I would rather stick with my B&W HT and marantz set up. My living room is 18’ by 18’ and we have our main sitting position some 12’ away using a 65” Sony Master series A9f. The Bose sits really well under the tv.

Just my2p
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post #14 of 24 Old 01-22-2020, 05:42 PM
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Hope you didn't purchase Sonos, should be an easy decision now.
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post #15 of 24 Old 01-23-2020, 05:22 AM
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Hope you didn't purchase Sonos, should be an easy decision now.
Considering Bose has had 3 different sound touch systems in the past 6 years that are not compatible with each other I’d strongly disagree.

Sonos connect and connect amp have been out forever and will still work and they will still support it. Meanwhile you will find Bose at your local garage sales.
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post #16 of 24 Old 01-23-2020, 06:05 AM
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Hope you didn't purchase Sonos, should be an easy decision now.
How long do you expect a manufacturer to continue supporting a product? I didn't get pissed when my Panasonic plasmas were no longer supported.
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post #17 of 24 Old 01-23-2020, 10:15 AM
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Bose >>> Sonos ....

Not even close ...

The 700 is the premier soundbar in the game ...

Now if you want Atmos you’re looking at a monstrous bar


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post #18 of 24 Old 01-23-2020, 02:42 PM
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Bose >>> Sonos ....

Not even close ...

The 700 is the premier soundbar in the game ...

Now if you want Atmos you’️re looking at a monstrous bar


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Completely Disagree. Op said that the beam was better at half the price. The Playbar blows the Bose 700 away if you compare them side by side, its seriously not even close.
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post #19 of 24 Old 03-24-2020, 02:04 PM
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Any updates on users of both side by side or updates on likes and dislikes? I am moving like next week and need a quick wireless setup for the wife in the main living room. Been leaning towards the Bose package (Bose 5.1 Home Theater Set (Black): Soundbar 700 + Bass 700 + Surround Speakers) but have been highly debating the Sonos setup with the Play 1's and Sub.

In the living room we watch a lot of netflix, movies, tv shows and general TV so need a variety of sounds + music when cleaning and just hanging.

Just trying to get some more feedback before I pull the trigger.
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post #20 of 24 Old 03-24-2020, 04:10 PM
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The Bose 700 is good it’ll challenge some true 5.1 systems.

The bass mod is amazing.


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post #21 of 24 Old 03-24-2020, 05:07 PM
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I wouldn’t buy either of them ...
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post #22 of 24 Old 03-24-2020, 06:16 PM
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This is it your typical BOSE bs - they hit a grand slam here ...




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post #23 of 24 Old 03-24-2020, 06:41 PM
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thanks for the update, will let you know which way i gooooooo
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post #24 of 24 Old Today, 09:42 AM
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I had the Sonos and the Bose 700 for a couple of weeks and was trying them both side by side (so to speak, I'd put them in the same location and swap them out using the same various source materials.)


My opinion after a couple of weeks of intensive testing:


The Sonus Beam sounded pretty good, especially for the price. But it seemed that it was really focused on being part of a multiroom setup which I don't need.


The Bose 700 sounded more spacious and at the same time more precise. It filled the room "better." The surround effects were more apparent. I used some other people to help me test, and did some blindfold tests. Out of 7 people of various sound "experience" (in terms of equipment they own) in a blind test, 6 preferred the Bose, 1 said no difference. 5 of the 6 said it was a clear difference (again, this was blindfold testing) and 1 said the difference was small but there.


This was without a sub or surrounds.



FWIW
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