Bose Companion 3 Review

Bose Companion 3

I got a Bose Companion 3 speaker system from my girlfriend yesterday and they’re hands down the best speaker system I’ve ever had. I used to have a pair of Logitech 5.1 speakers back in the day and they were mediocre for as many speakers as it came with (6…5 satellites and 1 sub. Hence the 5.1). The Companion 3 comes with 2 satellite speakers (2-channel, left and right) and a subwoofer.

I must say I was a little intimidated by the fact that it was Bose. Bose holds a reputation for making great sounding speakers (not entirely cheap either). My parents back in the day had one of the Bose Wave systems and loved it.

Setting up the Bose Companion 3 system is a breeze, just take a look at the diagram below.
Bose Companion 3 Diagram

So we set the speakers up and plugged it into the laptop. At first they didn’t work and that’s when we realized that the control-pod is touch sensitive. That is you can simply tap the top of it and it mutes it until you tap it again. The jog dial on the control-pod is a rubber coated pleasure-wheel. It’s completely effortless to turn and has an unbelievably smooth feel to it. The bottom of the little control-pod is rubber…but not just run of the mill rubber. It’s not sticky to the touch, but put it on glass or a similar smooth surface and it’s not budging without some brute force. Not sure how it does it, but it sticks in place amazingly.

Bose Companion 3 Pod

The satellites are as clear and crisp as one would expect from Bose. They stand about 6 inches tall on the stands and the speaker cubes themselves are only 2.5 inces tall and 2.75 inches across. They’re simple to plug in. Just run the wire from the speaker to the sub and plug it in. There’s no terminal connections on the sub, just an easy RCA-type connection. They have high highs, and the mid range is great. The sound can only be described as “silky”.

The subwoofer itself is about 8.5 inches high by 6.5 inches across and around 14 inches deep. The connections on the back are easy to read and understand. I had everything plugged up and turned on in about 2-3 minutes tops. I have it sitting under my desk so it is likely reverberating a bit more than it would out in the open, but the bass is superb. It’s tight and the timing and key is perfect. It has a 5.25-inch front-firing speaker (I haven’t found power levels for this system in the manual or anywhere else online) and a clean looking grille to cover it all up.

I wouldn’t say these are the loudest or bassiest speakers I’ve ever heard, but as far as a great overall package, they’re superb.
Link: Best Buy

10 Comment(s)

  1. My Klipsch ProMedia 2.1s would kill this system. Too bad they are broken.

    The bose speakers don’t get nearly as loud as the Klipsch. I won’t argue about size, ease of use, etc. I would definitely buy my Klipsch’s again and again before even trying anything else.

    Camp | Apr 11, 2008 | Reply

  2. I own the first series of the Bose Companion 3, as well as the Klipsch Promedia you mention, and yes the Klipsch are louder by a considerable amount, but the Bose speakers overall sound better. The bass is more resonant, never distorts, and the highs feel more realistic and natural than the Klipsch.

    Israel Lopez | Aug 9, 2008 | Reply

  3. a friend gave me just the sub of companion 3. he lost the satellites and the control pod, can I still possibly use the sub? please help

    robert | Oct 8, 2008 | Reply

  4. I have both Bose Companion 3 and Klipsch Promedia 2.1 THX. Bose is more on style and looks. Though my Klipsch looks ugly, overall it performs better in terms of power and overall sound quality.

    Dennis | Nov 11, 2008 | Reply

  5. My Companion 3 ser. II pod seems to have two options right now: red and yellow. I can’t get green, and I can’t get sound. Any suggestions? Please send copy of response to . Thanks!

    Allan | Nov 14, 2008 | Reply

  6. hi there

    did you get it to work without the control pod?

    I am in the same situation and just want to find out if the unit works or not.

    tim | Oct 18, 2009 | Reply

  7. You can order a replacement directly from Bose for $35 + Shipping. You can’t order online, however, you have to call customer service at 1-800-367-4008.

    I haven’t found the pin-outs for the controller. I’m not even sure if the connector is proprietary or not.

    Tim | Oct 22, 2009 | Reply

  8. The Klipsch Promedia 2.1 are all volume and power. Their build quality sucks (I had to replace the subwoofer and the speaker and bass volume control switch) and sound quality-wise they are good, but their bass distorts easily on the lowest frequencies if set to more than 30%, and the separation of highs and lows is quite noticeable, almost like there was a gap in between. That’s where the Bose Companion shines: Bass never distorts, and the sound is consistent and better balanced. As for damaged control pods, look on ebay or call bose and order a new one. These speakers are really high quality, so I assume you let the control pod fall a couple of times for it to become damaged. As for the question on using the subwoofer alone, yes you can, but you need at least the control pod to power it on and change the volume leve, and you need to figure out how to connect it to your receiver’s subwoofer out, or a secondary audio out on your computer, to be able to mix it with other speakers.

    Israel Lopez | Jun 11, 2010 | Reply

  9. Please email if you would like to sell the sub, mine went bad. Email is my user name | Mar 28, 2013 | Reply

  10. Just ordered the control pod today for $40 including shipping. I guess they charged me $5 for shipping even though they said it was free but if you see the comments it was $35. Its worked well for 2 yrs but the rubber was sticky. I love the speakers but why would Bose scrimp on the rubber quality. Bose, use plastic or metal but not rubber!

    Pinky | Jun 29, 2013 | Reply

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