Bose 161 Bookshelf Speakers Reviews
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Bose 161 Bookshelf Speakers

33 ratings (8 Epinions reviews)
Epinions Product Rating: Excellent
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Where Can I Buy It?

$149.00
+$22.00 shipping eBay
$149.99
+$9.99 shipping eBay
$158.99
Free Shipping Crutchfield

Great Value By Bose

Mar 4, 2004
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review
  • User Rating: Excellent

  • Ease of Use:
  • Durability:
  • Flatness:
  • Imaging:
  • Overall Sound:

Pros:Great value, balanced sound, speaker mounts, great surrounds.

Cons:Longer installation screws to set the speaker in a vertical locking position. Disappointing imaging.

The Bottom Line: These are solid BUY for a variety of consumers. They make great surrounds AND great mains! Their unique design conjures many possibilities of placement and mounting. Audiophile stuff? Close!


I have been putting together my home theater system for quite awhile. I am a deal hunter. I am like those "weather chasers" that spend months tracking tornadoes... I have eternal patience to wait for the right deal to come along.

After I tested the Bose 161s at the Bose Store near me in NJ my interest was piqued. They were new, well priced, and offered a very complete array of sound on everything I tried on them.

Then they went on sale and that's all I needed! I paid $129 for the speakers. They speaker mounts they come with (a plus by itself) are top notch (an even bigger plus). The hardest part was deciding their exact placement... placing them... leveling them... then moving them around until I was satisfied (nothing a little spackle can't fix!).

First a note about me: I am not a Bose fanatic. They make nice products. But they are a brand just like anything else. And they can make mediocre products as well as great ones. This just happens to be one of the great ones!

Let's get to the sound. I found that I needed to give these more power than my Yamaha receiver fed them initially. I am using them as rear surround speakers. I turned up the power to them by 6dB on the receiver unit and ever since then they have broken in and only sounded better and better and better.

They did not have the articulation in imaging that I was imagining them to have though. But that can be played with. The speaker mounts can move vertically any way you choose. If you get them to reflect off of bare walls (def. turn up power then) they actually image quite well. But not out of the box however.

Overall you get a speaker package that is just as good with music as it is with movies, that provides surprisingly good bass and mid-range clarity along with some decent higher frequencies. I would have jump at the chance to use these as main speakers on a stereo system in a workspace, basement, or other casual listening area too. They are great for music. The sound is also anything but flat. It must be their design; the sound dispersal is really very impressive. I can sit anywhere in my room (fairly small room) and get the same level of sound and surround sound feeling as in the measured sweet spot. I really appreciate that.

I put this in the same category as their VCS-10 center channel. It’s a great deal for some great features that you won't get with other speakers. A very great value indeed!!


Recommend this product? Yes


Amount Paid (US$): 129


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