Bose Out To Simplify Home-Theater Setup


Framingham, Mass. - Three new Bose Lifestyle home-theater systems are the company's first with onscreen displays to simplify setup and control sources.

They're also the company's first system to decode Dolby TrueHD and multichannel PCM soundtracks on Blu-ray discs. Dolby TrueHD is decoded via a TrueHD decoder, while Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS 5.1 are all decoded via Bose proprietary technology, a spokesperson said.

Two models are also the company's first with included iPod dock, which connects to a dedicated proprietary input. The dock is certified as Made for iPod, but it also works with iPhones placed in airplane mode, a spokesman said.

The two iPod-docking systems are the Lifestyle V35 and V25 system, retailing at $3,299 and $2,499, respectively. The third system is the $1,999 Lifestyle T20 system. All are available now at Bose-owned retail stores,

, and Bose's toll-free number. They will become available through authorized retailers in the next few weeks, a spokesman said.

All three feature RF remotes, amplification, 5.1 speaker system, ADAPTiQ automatic room equalization, and source switching that includes four HDMI 1080p inputs, up from two in the Lifestyle systems that they replace. The system's HDMI inputs and output do not support 3D passthrough.

All but the T20 comes with embedded AM/FM tuner and tethered iPod dock. None comes with embedded DVD player or Blu-ray player. All can be used with the separately sold SL2 transmitter/receiver package to make the surround speakers wireless.

 In carrying over its DVD-equipped Lifestyle 48 system at $3,999, Bose offers four 5.1-speaker Lifestyle systems, down from as many as seven in recent years.

 To simplify setup, the three new models feature Bose's Unify Intelligent Integration System, which walks consumers through set-up steps displayed on a connected TV screen. Bose said the instructions, written in simplified language, include pictures of the connectors to use and recommend the right cables to use. The control console senses when a connection is made, and the display confirms that the connection was made successfully.

 To simplify operation, consumers use Bose's own RF remote to control connected audio and video sources. To enable control of other-brand sources via Bose's remote, consumers point the source remote at the main Lifestyle control console, which incorporates a database of IR codes. The console identifies the type and brand of source, and after the consumer follows onscreen instructions, the connected source can be controlled from the Bose remote via the console's front-panel IR blaster, a spokesman said.

 Previous Lifestyle systems with RF remotes also controlled connected sources, but users had to manually enter codes into the systems, the spokesman said.

 The supplied Bose remotes feature buttons that control often-used functions, while functions used less often are controlled via an onscreen interface.

  To simplify source switching, the onscreen display lists connected sources by such generic terms as Blu-ray player or cable box instead of listing them by input, such as HDMI 1 or component 1.

  The Lifestyle V35 and V25 come with universal remote with two-line display to display the name of a song or the radio station that is playing. The V35 features four 4.5-inch by 2.25-inch by 3.25-inch D Jewel Cube speakers and a horizontal center channel speaker. The V25 system features larger 6.25-inch by 3-inch by 4-inch Direct/Reflecting speakers.

 The T20 system also features 6.25-inch by 3-inch by 4-inch Direct/Reflecting speakers but lacks AM/FM tuner, iPod dock, and LCD display on the remote.


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