• 3.0 out of 5 stars

    Mac laptop speakers do a better job on low quality audio

    • Written by from Washington

    I purchased a pair of these after reading all the positive reviews and checking with an audiophile friend who has a pair. On the positive side the speakers create a reasonable sound stage and they seem to do well with the types of music I listen to (classical and popular). They are not amazing, but do a good job for their size. They are compact and portable, but on balance I probably would not travel with them and would prefer noise canceling headphones for that use. I can't comment on their performance for base heavy music as I never listen to it, so I would accept other reviewers comments. I do find the base satisfactory, but a bit attenuated.

    Where these speakers fall down for me is in some movies, Skype, podcasts and streaming video. In many of these cases I actually prefer the sound from my laptop speakers. As an example I have a digital version of BBC's Ocean Planet and, apart from the sound stage and some detail, the narration sounds clearer on the laptop speakers. Skype does not sound great and a bad connection will sound awful through these speakers, but somewhat better on the laptop speakers. With poor quality audio feeds, especially with voice, it is often clearer through the laptop speakers.

    It does appear that there is a reasonable amount of variation between different movie recordings. On some other BBC productions the MusicMonitors do a fair to good job. Star Trek into Darkness is nice and the base is more than adequate for my taste. I still miss some clarity in the voices though, but there is a lot of detail and a very nice sound stage. I don't have a good explanation for the variation, but it is there. I imagine that the laptop speakers are better at filtering out rubbish in bad recordings. I have played the MusicMonitors on Partita for solo violin No.3 in E major and was impressed with the sound reproduction.

    So why the three star rating? All-in-all for the money I think the MusicMonitor's should consistently do a better job than my laptop speakers and I don't find that to be true. If I only listened to music I would give them a four star rating (classical and modern), but 50 percent of my usage is not music, but video, podcasts, and Skype. This means I have to accept a lot of variation in quality for the advantages of portability and small footprint. To my mind if you have a library of good quality video and audio and want a minimal footprint these little speakers are worthwhile considering. If your primary use is Skype, streaming movies and podcasts with some music then I would also want to audition some alternatives.

    I want to love these speakers for their elegant design, compactness, and reasonable musicality. However, their sensitivity to source and, to some extent, placement is frustrating. I keep disconnecting them for Skype and for any low quality audio and then reconnecting for listening to music.

    1 of 1 people found this useful

  • 3.0 out of 5 stars

    Just OK (overpriced)

    • Written by from Alameda

    These speakers have excellent sound quality for their portable size. I highly recommend them for laptop users who want to be able to hear some bass. I also enjoy using them for music editing/mixing because the bass is fairly well balanced for most headphones and other speaker setups.

    If you are a gamer, avid movie-watcher, or dance partier, I would not buy these. If you want to blast sound into a room, these speakers will not cut it. There are much better speakers out there for a quarter of the price that include external sub-woofers and adjustable bass/treble. I have compared the MusicMonitors with the Creature 3s for watching movies in my living room, and the Creature 3s are much better in sound quality, flexibility, and volume.

    The MusicMonitors are pretty sweet, but they are definitely not worth the $400 price point. If you want real sound, go for an external sub-woofer setup.

    39 of 43 people found this useful

  • 3.0 out of 5 stars

    NIce.. but rather have...

    • Written by from Sherman Oaks

    They are good, great sound but I rather buy Bose® Companion® 5 Multimedia Speaker..
    Have them both and Bose® Companion® 5 Multimedia is better priced and deeper bass.

    21 of 30 people found this useful

  • 3.0 out of 5 stars

    Really wanted to like these Bose Speakers.

    • Written by from La Verne

    Pros: Small footprint (I was surprised by how small these speakers were when I took them out of the box. From the pictures online I was expecting something bigger, but was nicely surprised.)
    Aesthetically pleasing and well built. These speakers are very solid considering their small size.
    Bose name on the front of the speaker to impress my friends :)

    Cons: Sound was very tinny when compared to my old 12 yr old computer speakers. (Granted my speakers are larger and have a base module, but they came free with my 1st PC and still fill my living room with great sound, but will not look right next to my new iMac. The Bose are $400 so I expected them to at least match the sound of my old speakers.)

    I really tried to like the Bose MusicMonitors. They would have looked really nice next to my new iMac, but when you listen to them it sounds like something is missing - you know that rich fullness sound that you expect from expensive speakers. If you listen to them long enough you will get used to the sound and train your mind to think that is what music should sound like (Maybe that is why they put "Hear the quality. It takes only about four minutes to listen" on the cover of the Demonstration Disc)

    Call me an audiophile, but I will continue to look for nice looking and sounding speakers to go with my new iMac.

    51 of 61 people found this useful