For quite some time, I’ve been in the market for a pair of speakers to match with my Mac(s). I don’t care much for speakers that take up too much room or have a separate bass unit, however; those are the main reasons why I left my SoundSticks back in New York. There are tons of speaker options out there, and I’ve tried many before retiring them.
Last week, I went to the local mall to pick up some stuff from Adidas and somehow ended up in the Bose store. And there I saw the new Bose Computer MusicMonitors — and was immediately blown away. Clean, crisp sound, thundering bass and a diminutive footprint (4.81″H x 2.5″W x 4.81″D ) — these speakers really give a big bang for the buck. And that’s a lot of bucks — $399 for a pair. Bose has apparently been selling a similar set of speakers in Japan for a while.
With a brushed aluminum finish, it seems they are purposely designed to match Macs (see photos), though Bose needs to improve its packaging if it truly wants to lure the design-conscious. Bose CMMs use the headphone jack for audio input; you can also use them as speakers for your iPod/iPhone. It comes with a tiny remote to adjust volume and shut off the speakers. Since they have a built-in amplifier, they need an AC input, which is my only complaint.
After mucking around with them at the store for about 30 minutes, persuading the guy to let me plug them into my Macbook, and trying different music combinations — jazz, electronica, blues and dub — I was satisfied enough to bring them home with me. As a caution, if you use your computer’s CD drive to listen to CDs, you might be disappointed by how the monitor delivers the low frequencies. I only listen to digital audio on my computers, so it isn’t much an issue. Of course, for my regular music consumption, I still prefer my Definitive Technology monitors.
Bottomline: If small size, looks and clarity of music are your primary goals from a pair of speakers for your computer, then Bose CMM should be your No. 1 pick. Now for me, it’s time to rock!