Bose Videowave first look

It's meant to be the 'best sounding TV' ever... but is the cost worth it?
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Bose VideoWave
Price $7999
3 stars out of 5

It may sound good… but 

CHOICE testing over the last few years has shown TV audio quality is decreasing because thin TV panels leave little room for good sized speakers. The new Bose VideoWave reverses this trend with the best audio we have heard come out of an LCD panel. So far so good... 

At the centre of the Bose VideoWave is a HD quality 117 cm (46-inch) LCD screen which our testers rate as good overall for picture quality, but not as good as some of our What to buy models that cost a quarter of the price. Surprisingly, you will need to add a PVR or HD set top box to the mix if you want to watch TV as it doesn’t include a HD tuner - so technically it’s an LCD panel rather than a TV.

An external control box accepts inputs from various devices and the remote control is easy to use and controls a wide variety of devices such as a PVR, games console or DVD player, with onscreen menus for each one. There’s also an iPod dock with support for both audio and video playback.
The VideoWave incorporates 16 small speakers and a subwoofer at the back of the panel, operating in a similar manner to a sound bar to create the impression of sound coming from different points in a room. This speaker system adds to the size of VideoWave - at 48kg it’s more than double the weight of some 46-inch TVs currently available.

The surround sound audio setup is simple and effective, taking approximately 15 minutes to calibrate the system to your room, with adjustments made based on echoes. Our listening panel found that overall it performed well in creating the impression of surround sound, although not as convincing as a good home theatre system with separate speakers.

CHOICE verdict

You may be surprised at the star rating as there is no denying that the unit performs well and delivers on the promise of 'best sounding TV'. We had no reservation taking a star off, however, as the asking price of $8000 seems to be a few thousand dollars over the mark for a good quality 46-inch TV with integrated speakers and sub-woofer - even after taking into account the undoubted appeal the Bose name carries for some people. Interestingly, the same product is available on the US Bose site for $5000. 

For more Visual options, see Entertainment.




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