It is pretty crazy how many times I have looked at the Bose Smart Soundbar 700. It was my number one soundbar for quite some time and more often than not it would come out on top whenever I did one of these VS style articles. Today though, it is going up against its replacement the Bose Smart Soundbar 900. I recently looked at the 900 in my Bose Soundbar 900 vs Sonos Arc which is a better soundbar? article that was a ton of fun to put together. Many people were torn between the 700 and the Sonos Arc as to which was the best soundbar, but that has not changed to the 900 instead.
The first round in our Bose Soundbar 700 vs 900 is looking at the price. These are much more evenly priced than you would think. Actually, I thought that Bose would have lowered the price of the 700 considerably when they released the 900. Anyway, let’s take a look at how much you are probably going to be spending on both of these soundbars.
Bose Smart Soundbar 700:
Bose really struck gold with the Bose Smart Soundbar 700. The reason I say this is that even after all this time and even after its replacement has hit the market it has kept its $799.99 price. Right now, on Amazon (as I write this of course) it is still priced at $799. If you head to eBay, you can find deals for this pretty regularly. This was not the case a year or so ago. However, now, I have seen this brand-new for around the 600 buck’s mark. There are even some refurbished ones on there that are closer to $500. I have a feeling that more deals will be coming for this, probably on places like Amazon too. If you asked me before the 900 was released if I felt that the $799.99 asking price for this was good, I would have said yes. However, now I do have to say that I feel you are way better off spending the extra 100 bucks on the 900.
Bose Smart Soundbar 900:
The current asking price for the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 is $899.99. For a Dolby Atmos capable soundbar of this quality, I do not think that is a bad price at all. Getting close to cinema quality sound for under a grand is pretty damn awesome in my book. As this does cost around 100 bucks more than the 700, is it worth it is the question you are probably thinking of right now. I can hands down say that yes, this is worth that extra 100 bucks. Even if you had to save up a little bit more and deal with your older soundbar or even your TV speakers, I would say it is well worth doing so. I have had a look online and as I write this the Bose Smart Soundbar is still pretty new so there are not many deals to be had on this floating around as of yet.
100 bucks is certainly not a small amount of money. Hell, you could probably get four or so 4K Blu-Rays for that! However, I just do not see any reason at all to spend 800 bucks on the 700 when for an extra 100 bucks you can get the 900 which supports Dolby Atmos. I would wager that going forward, all 4K releases are going to come with a Dolby Atmos track. With that extra 100 bucks you are spending on the Bose Soundbar 900, you are future proofing yourself.
Round two in this Bose Soundbar 700 vs 900 fight is looking at the design of these soundbars and these are very, very similar so it is going to be hard to pick a winner. It is like it is fighting a mirror image of itself. That was quite poetic, wasn’t it?
Bose Smart Soundbar 700:
I want to start by suggesting you have a look at this BOSE Soundbar 700 system: Full Review video that gives you a great look at just how cool the design of the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 is. I have talked about the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 so many times on this site that I am kind of at a loss for what new information I can give you guys about this. This is a pretty good sized soundbar as it comes in at 38.5” x 2.25” x 4.25. I like these dimensions as it means that it is not going to get in the way of your TV (well more than likely) when you have this in front of it. Overall, the build quality of the Bose Soundbar 700 is truly amazing. It just has a very premium and high-quality build to it that truly does blow you away the first time you take this out of the box.
The whole design of the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 is great. To start with the plastic, they use is nice and thick and it has a very durable feel to it. The grille though is what really blew me away the first time that I held the Bose Soundbar 700 in my hands. They have a metal grille here and it does not just cover the front, it also wraps around the sides and it just looks so cool! However, it is the top of the 700 that really does capture your attention. They could have just used plastic here and it would have been fine. However, Bose went that extra mile and they have a very sleek and stylish looking glass top on here. I cannot express how much I love the way that this looks. Now, as great as this looks, I can tell you from firsthand experience that this glass top is a magnet for fingerprints and dust. However, glass is also very easy to clean and a wipe every once and a while is all you need to do.
We do have to check out the back of the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 so we can get an idea of how you will be connecting this to your TV. You have your main HMDI Arc port on here, but you do also have another HDMI port. There is also an optical port on the back of here too. This could be handy as the 700 is not a Dolby Atmos soundbar, you could happily connect this with an optical cable and not lose anything by doing so. There is also the little port in case you wanted to add a subwoofer like the Bose Bass Module 700 for example. Oh, they also have a USB port on here for updating the firmware if that is ever needed. It is worth noting that this comes in white and black, although I have only checked out the black version for myself.
Bose Smart Soundbar 900:
If you want to get a good look at this, check out this Bose Smart Soundbar 900 – Unboxing + Setup video which is made by Bose by themselves. The Bose Smart Soundbar 700 is such a gorgeous looking soundbar that I am so glad Bose kept the design pretty similar to the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 The 900 like the 700 comes in both black and white, but I have only looked at the black version. The dimensions of this are 41,14” W x 2,29” H x 4,21 so it is a few inches longer than the 700, but the height and depth are quite similar. As is the case with any soundbar that is this long, you will want to make sure that your TV unit is going to be able to handle it, a soundbar hanging over the edge looks terrible! The overall build quality of this is incredible and I am 99 percent sure it is made with the same solid plastic as the 700.
Remember how I was so blown away by the glass top that the 700 had to offer? Well, the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 also has this and it is just as awesome here as it was on the 700, but there is a big difference here. The difference is that as the 900 is a Dolby Atmos bar, it has up-firing speakers so rather than the glass taking up the whole top area, each side has an opening where the up-firing speakers are located. This is covered by a metal grille and man does this look awesome! To be fair, I could see why some people would prefer the full glass top, but I like the extra metal grilles. Speaking of the grille, the 900 has the same metal grille as the 700. It covers the front and then wraps around the sides and it looks great in the process, plus it offers the speakers a great level of protection.
On the back of the Bose Smart Soundbar 900, you have the exact same hookups as the 700 has. There is your HDMI Arc and one other HDMI port. There is a USB for any updates and there is also a port if you want to connect a subwoofer like I mentioned with the 700. There is even an optical port on here which is handy, but you will lose your Dolby Atmos compatibility if you hook this up to your TV via optical cable.
This is so hard to call. Both the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 and 900 are great looking soundbars. I think if I had to do a top five best looking soundbars that both of these would be on it and probably 1 and 2! The thing is, I think picking a winner here comes down to if you want a full glass top or if you think the extra metal grilles on the top for the up-firing speakers are cooler. For me, I have to say I love the extra grilles on the top of the 900 just a tad more so that is why I am giving this round to the 900.
I usually say that sound is the main event of these VS articles. However, in the case of the Bose Soundbar 700 vs 900, we have a co-main event ( like in WrestleMania VIII) as I think that the design category we just looked at along with sound are both worthy of the top billing when it comes to these two soundbars. Of course, the big thing here is that one offers Dolby Atmos and the other does not.
Bose Smart Soundbar 700:
The first time I set up the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 in my home theatre, not just to test it, but this was going to be MY soundbar that I use all the time, I was blown away. If you want to get a rough idea about the sound capabilities of the 700, check out this BOSE 700 SOUNDBAR FULL 5.1 AUDIO TEST which shows it off a bit. My all time favorite movie is Terminator 2: Judgement Day and I have watched it with the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 probably at least five times since I got it. I can tell you that the Bose Soundbar 700 handles big blockbuster style movies phenomenally well. The way that this fills a room with sound is just so amazing and many other soundbars that were released after this and some that even cost more could not match what the Bose Soundbar 700 offered in this regard. There is no soundbar that actually does surround sound in my opinion, but this comes very close and it does make you feel like you are being blasted with sound from all angles.
While it is all well and good for me to be talking about Hollywood blockbusters. A huge reason that many people want a soundbar is because modern TV speakers are not all that great. I will say that they have gotten better the last couple of years, but for me, they are still lacking. With the Bose Smart Soundbar 700, the level of clear voice that this offers is truly amazing. I actually just recently watched through Revolution: Season 1 again after not seeing it for many years. First of all, this is such a great TV series and it is a damn shame that we did not get a third season of the show. However, what I want to highlight here is that the 700 manages to keep the dialogue very clear, even if there is a lot of action and other stuff going down at the same time. Once you have heard dialogue through the 700, there is no way you could go back to using your TV speakers.
The Bose Smart Soundbar 700 does not support Dolby Atmos. Do not get me wrong recent (well recent as of writing) 4K Blu-Rays such as Venom: Let Their Be Carnage and No Time To Die will still sound amazing pumped through the 700. However, I think that Dolby Atmos is 100 percent the way of the future, and my very picky ears could not go back to a non Dolby Atmos soundbar if I am being 100 percent honest with you and I say that as someone who absolutely loved the 700! The level of bass that this thing provides is great, it does not have a subwoofer built in, but for the most part, movies still have more than enough bass and most people will probably not feel the need to add a subwoofer. All though, if you did add a subwoofer and a set of satellite speakers for the rear, you would have a truly epic setup.
Bose Smart Soundbar 900:
If you want to check out a video about the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 that is straight to the point and lets you know how it offers you theatre like sound, check out this Bose Smart Soundbar 900 | Theater-like sound. At home. video from Bose. I do have to start by talking about Dolby Atmos and the Dolby Atmos that the 900 provides is great. It is one of the best I have encountered and I am not just saying that because I have this thing hooked up in my home theatre right now. Speaking of home theatre, my wife and I watched The Hobbit: Motion Picture Trilogy in 4K over Christmas break and found the Dolby Atmos track to be amazing. I would actually say it was as good as an experience as I remember having in the theatre when I watched these movies! It just comes at you right from above and it is done so well. The more I think about it, the more I think at under a grand there is no better Dolby Atmos on the market right now!
It is not just movies that have a dedicated Dolby Atmos track that sound great when played through the 900. A comedy that I adore is Hot Tub Time Machine, it is just so ridiculous, how can you not have a great time when watching it! Well, a movie like this that has a great variety when it comes to the sound truly does shine when played through the Bose Smart Soundbar 900. Any movie or TV show that has a great deal of dialogue is great through this as just like the 700, it makes sure that you hear every single word. No matter how quietly the actors are talking or if there is some big explosion happening at the same time.
Even though this does not come with a subwoofer, the bass you get here is pretty damn solid and more than fine. A movie like Transformers: Dark of the Moon which is probably the weakest of the series, has a lot of bass in it and that is not lost when you watch it through the 900. My lovely wife actually surprised me for my anniversary (after a few hints) and I now have the Bose Bass Module 700 to go along with this along with the Bose Surround Speakers 700. I know that these two things combined are well over a thousand bucks, but I can hand on heart say that the sound I now have in my home theatre is just as good as I get in my local cinema.
Before the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 came along the 700 was the best that Bose had to offer. Now though, I have to say that the 900 is the better option. The 700 still sounds great, but the fact that the 900 supports Dolby Atmos makes that the clear winner here. To be honest, there is not much in it when it comes to watching a regular movie or TV show between them. However, Dolby Atmos, especially for just an extra 100 bucks is more than enough reason to make the 900 the winner here.
The Remote Control
We are calming things down a bit here as we look at the remote controls that these soundbars come with. I know that not many people will have come to this Bose Soundbar 700 vs 900 contest to read about the remotes! However, if you have read any of my other VS articles, you know that I am a real sucker for a cool remote control!
Bose Smart Soundbar 700: I do not think I could tell you how many soundbars I have tested out since I initially had the pleasure to be acquainted with the Bose Smart Soundbar 700. Yet despite this, no other soundbar has offered me a remote control more awesome than the one that comes with the Bose Smart Soundbar 700. This is my favorite remote control; it truly is awesome and it gives you all the control you need over your soundbar. It has a ton of buttons, but it has these little LED lights that will highlight the buttons that work with whatever setting you have it on! This is so awesome and something I wish more companies would do. Sadly, this was probably the last great remote control before companies started cheeping out! Just like the actual soundbar has a real premium and high-quality feel to it, so does the remote control too.
Bose Smart Soundbar 900: The one disappointing area of the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 is the remote control. I really did think that Bose would just use that same awesome remote control the 700 had. Instead, we get this much smaller remote control that feels and looks way cheaper. It also only gives you the basic amount of control over your soundbar! If you want access to the full amount of features that the Bose Soundbar 900 has, you need to use the Bose app! In comparison to what other companies are offering these days with their soundbars, the remote here is fine. However, in comparison to what came before it, this is a real disappointment.
The Verdict: I was so disappointed with the remote control that came with the Bose Smart Soundbar 900. So much so I was even more devastated when I heard I could not just use the 700 remotes control with the 900. I feel that Bose really took a step back with the remote control that they gave us with the 900. It is not a horrible remote by any means, but it is not even close to being as good as the one that comes with the Bose Soundbar 700.
What Is In The Box?
The last category in our Bose Soundbar 700 vs 900 Mortal Kombat style mirror match (bonus points if you get that reference) is looking at what you will find in the box. Bose are one of the best companies around when it comes to making sure you have what you need when you buy one of their products.
Bose Soundbar 700: Bose always look after their customers in regards to what you get in the box and the Bose Soundbar 700 is a great example of that. You get that gorgeous soundbar and its power cable. However, you also get a set of batteries for that epic remote control which is something I really do appreciate. They also give you this thing called a Bose ADAPTiQ Headset so you can calibrate the sound perfectly for your room. I have said this before, but I threw the one I got on eBay and ended up getting a couple of movies with the money I got. You get both an HDMI and an optical cable here which is very unusual as most companies just give you an HDMI cable. The cherry on top is the little cleaning cloth they give you so you can keep the glass top fingerprint and dust free.
Bose Soundbar 900: Once again Bose pretty much has you covered. The Bose Smart Soundbar 900 comes with the actual soundbar and its best buddy, the power cable. Even though this is a Dolby Atmos soundbar, as well as an HDMI cable, Bose once again also gives you an optical cable which I do appreciate. There is the “amazing” remote control and a set of batteries and they also give you the Bose ADAPTiQ Headset as well. The only thing missing is that they did not throw in the little cleaning cloth like they did with the 700.
The Verdict: This is a very easy round, so even that it is actually coming down to a cheap little piece of cloth! That is right, I am giving this one to the 700 as for some reason, Bose decided not to include a cleaning cloth with the 900!
What Is The Best?
Sometimes when I do one of these VS articles, I never know which way it is going to go until I get all the way to the end. With this Bose Soundbar 700 vs 900 article, I will be real with you and say that I knew before I even started which was this was going. I have had the pleasure of using the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 in my home theatre for a very long time and I could not have been any happier with it. However, if you were to come to my home theatre to watch a movie with me (you bring the popcorn) you will notice that now I have the Bose Smart Soundbar 900. The Dolby Atmos factor is what makes the 900 the winner here, the 700 was and still is great, but there is no way that I could advise someone to get it over the 900. The difference is around 100 bucks and I personally feel that the Dolby Atmos functionality is well worth that extra 100 bucks. All movies going forward (well I think they will) are more than likely going to have a Dolby Atmos track and with the 900 that is something you are going to be able to enjoy.