View Full Version : Bang and Olufsen

25th Aug 2005, 18:22
I am considering buying some B&O Earphones. Does anyone know if they sell the earphones outside B&O shops?

Anyone own them?


25th Aug 2005, 18:43
Generally, I think you have to go inside.

I'll get me coat

barry lloyd
25th Aug 2005, 19:06
I used to have a set (to go with the rest of the kit). They performed excellently, and I would thoroughly recommend them. B&O are very fussy about their outlets, and I think it would be difficult to find any discounts outside of an official franchise or one of their own shops. Don't be afraid to go inside though, they're really quite friendly people. ;)
The usual suspects such as eBay may have some pre-owned ones on offer, if that's acceptable, or try the websites that deal in that type of thing - but don't hold your breath!

Cyclic Hotline
25th Aug 2005, 19:31
Are B&O really so distinctly special, or is it all an advertising ploy?

The advertising always insinuated that you were pretty special if you were smart enough to realise that paying 10 times more for some stereo was really worth it.

Frankly, I always thought it was the other way round, how little you could pay for some reasonably decent gear.

Can you really tell the difference? What is the difference?

Gingerbread Man
25th Aug 2005, 19:39
I think you have to pull up in a Bentley Continental GT or better for them to open the door to you :rolleyes: . Also, don't ask how much anything is! If you need to ask...
I think they make pretty quality stuff, but not sooo good that it justifies their snobbery.

Ginge ;)

tony draper
25th Aug 2005, 19:52
Try Ebay two minute search revealed

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Brand-New-B-O-Bang-Olufsen-A8-Headphones_W0QQitemZ5801425401QQcategoryZ3274QQssPageNameZWD 10VQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

Oops link dont seem to want to work, anyway go to ebay and type Bang and olfson into the search engine,they got more headphones there than you can shake a stick at


Cyclic Hotline
25th Aug 2005, 20:11
The rooms that they always show these items in always have the ambience of a railway waiting room, or a cave.

Maybe minimalism is just too sophisticated for me. Of course, its all minimal except the price!:eek:

I think you have it right ginge. Anywhere that isn't selling me on their competitive pricing, probably won't see too much of my cash. Amazing what you can convince people to buy, if it makes them feel good about the significance of them using your product.

Takes all types, I guess.

25th Aug 2005, 20:17
Buy Beyerdynamic headphones - they're dead good. The DT-100 has been braodcast standard for years (although they are slightly heavy.)

25th Aug 2005, 21:22
I have always found Yamaha to be good stuff, although still a bit pricey.

25th Aug 2005, 22:57
hmm....am still pondering :hmm:

Will have a look in the shop over the weekend me thinks!

barry lloyd
25th Aug 2005, 23:26
Like everything else in life, yer gets wot yer pays for. I've been buying their stuff for 25 years - never had a problem with it, and always sold the old stuff off quickly and at a good price . If you just want something that reproduces a noise in the background, then the other stuff is fine, but if you want to listen to the sounds, then it's a different story.
Elitist? - No. Some people spend a small fortune on top-of-the-range kitchens because they enjoy cooking, others on golf equipment because they love playing golf. It's a matter of choice.

26th Aug 2005, 00:31
I have long lusted after a pair of Bose QuietComforts. Maybe Santa will oblige this Christmas.

26th Aug 2005, 01:54
Do many recording studios use B & O audio equipment?


So, its all really a matter of appearance then. Functional Art as it were...

26th Aug 2005, 02:15
I have long lusted after a pair of Bose QuietComforts. "BOSE" is considered by some to be an acronym for "Buy Other Sound Equipment." :sad:

From "BOSE Acoustimass -- Better Profits Through Marketing" (http://www.intellexual.net/bose.html)

26th Aug 2005, 02:58
blacksheep's got it with the slightly tongue in sheep, sorry cheek, observation.

If you want professional quality find out what professionals use. Bang for the Buck as opposed to Bucks for the Bang.

Onan the Clumsy
26th Aug 2005, 04:27
Sheep AND deer in one post!

Cyclic Hotline
26th Aug 2005, 04:59

I guess it was always just the clinical environment of the homes they showed their gear in that turned me off. All those houses looked like laboratories, not homes. I really can't envisage laying around relaxing in the room above, I mean come on. There is something very offputting in these minimal designs - but I guess that is just personal choice.

But then again, maybe you need that basic space to get fabulous acoustics, so you can listen to the music?

I guess that after 30 years of listening to aircraft engines at close range, I am indeed looking for more of a noise generator, so I can get the vague intent of the musicians I am listening to.

I'll stick to my cheap and quite excellent system in the house, and my ass kicking (factory installed) system in the car! :)

26th Aug 2005, 06:19
Our first home looked like that until we could afford to buy furniture. As I recall it had no acoustics; only a weird echo effect.

Put in a bar and it'd be an ace room for parties though. So easy to clean up afterwards...

26th Aug 2005, 09:07
I guess Scandinavian elegance and quality simply is too much for some people to understand. Of course, we don't have carpets that doesn't match the rest of the decor all over the house, including the bathroom. Perhaps the absence of the busy look is what is putting some people off. But if you want looks, function and quality all in one package then go for B&O.

26th Aug 2005, 09:20
B & O is just a bunch of Philips components stylishly packed to gether at an outrageously price. Better buy some nice furniture for the extra bucks. Go for Sennheiser or Shure.

26th Aug 2005, 09:38
Scandinavian elegance and quality Ah, like Flaps, you mean... ;)

Echo Zulu Yankee
26th Aug 2005, 09:41
B&O Are spectacular.

If you have any doubts about buying the headphones then just go into the shop and listen to a pair, take your own CD's along if you wish - you even get a cup of tea and a free biscuit.

I bought a pair last year and they have the best sound quality I have ever heard. I also have a B&O stereo but the speakers were damaged in a move recently and so the quality is gone (as I can't afford the £18,000 it is for a new pair) as they are on Marrantz speakers now.

It truly is the difference between being able to hear the cymbals "crash" and "tshhh"

Just walk into the shop and try them, if you don't like them you can walk out empty handed....but you wont :E

26th Aug 2005, 09:51
Nah, she's more like a a bunch of Philips components stylishly packed .

26th Aug 2005, 10:05
Techman Nah, she's more like a a bunch of Philips components stylishly packed .
:ok: Yup - VERY stylishly packed !

26th Aug 2005, 11:48
I have always being a big fan of Bang & Olufsen, mainly because of the looks...after all that is the only reason most people buy it! I have the A8 earphones and I have to say they are great and I had no problems with them untill I ran them over with a 'wheely' chair...but this was not a problem as I went back to the dealership where I got them from and told them exactly what happened...two days later I had a brand new pair! Now thats good service!! :-)!

BUT as many of you may know the sound quality is really good from all of there products but its not the best money can buy...most of the drivers and amps are from various other companies and are tweaked in denmark by B & O to make them slightly better and as for there £13,000 plasma TV well thats just a Samsung plasma panel with a nice case...dont get me wrong though I am not saying that samsung dont make a really good quality panel for it I am just making a statement that B & O is bought for the style and the 'pride of ownership' in a way its like buying a Ferrari, there are faster and better cars out there for less money..but hey its got that badge and the hertiage that goes with it!

If you want some really good quality audio though look no further than Wilson Audio with the Alexandria X-2....
A bargain at $128,000 a pair ;)

And The Quad ESL that is known as a 'reference' speaker for all other speakers as it is works without the use of the traditional driver but electrostatically...gets rather confussing after that, but the sound pressure level is exactly the same wether your ear is right up next to the speaker or at the other side of the room! Not bad considering it is years old!


But on the cheaper side of things Linn, Tag Mclaren and Bose do some very nice products...dont look as nice as B & O but they sure do sound better...at the end of the day though if your not a sad ba*stad who looks for every little imperfection in everything go for the B & O, they look amazing and the sound quality is pretty bl*ody good still!!! :D

26th Aug 2005, 12:11
Aahh the Quad radiators, indeed the mother of all speakers (I'll never forget the sound of the Floyd's "Breathe" played on these electrostats at the local radio dealer at full blast) And so are the Quad amplifiers. 20 years ago when I bought the Quad amplifier, a Revox tuner, Thorens turntable, I had no more money left for the radiators, so after ample listening i choose B&W DM6. Still have the original set-up and works like a dream.

Bose (=Buy Other Sound Equipment) is buying like $300 stuff for $1200 and it doesn't even look good. Few people who pay this amount will ever admit that though...

Why Not Bose? (http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?threadid=343759&highlight=bose)

26th Aug 2005, 12:53
I have a pair of the legendary Bose 802's and if there home audio is anywhere near as good as the quality of sound that comes from these Pro audio speakers then I would buy Bose's....I dont think I have ever 'sat down' and listened to any of there home audio systems so I can only go on the quality of there professional audio equipment...this is why I recommended them but if it is really poor and from looking at what everyone has being saying on that forum it sounds as though they are not worth the money!

26th Aug 2005, 13:16
I'm surprised the epithet "yuppie" hasn't been raised yet. Perhaps the decade of greed superseded its use, but B&O were the archetypal "yuppie" accessory for donkey's years, dismissed by the serious as a triumph of style over substance. I've never heard them, but I would have run a mile rather than be seen with them in my house. The link posted by Capt Kaos provides plenty of examples of Bose being an even more egregious example to those in the know.

Most people don't know or don't care. If they want something that sounds better than their TV or transistor radio and image is important to them, B&O will fill the bill. Lots of companies make their money by pitching to that niche.

One of these days I'll get around to getting a decent home audio/video setup. The lesson I've learned is that when the time comes I'll be asking those who know rather than the salesmen. Not for the minute differences in sound, rather because it's quite obvious that almost indistinguishable sound can be obtained for a fraction of the price if you ignore the brand names with their huge advertising budget.

aerobat 1971
26th Aug 2005, 13:23
Alternatively, try a combination of true high-end components, for the same price as B&O you'll actually get world class sound. For example, Meridian, Krell & Mark Levinson make some of the best hi-fi on the planet, and it will cost about the same as B&O gear - it'll just sound around 10 times better. For speakers, look no further than Martin Logan - electrostatic technology brought bang up to date, and even looks stylish at the same time!



Cyclic Hotline
26th Aug 2005, 19:26

These are the last things I would want cluttering up my house, they look like one armed bandits, or Daleks!

in a way its like buying a Ferrari, there are faster and better cars out there for less money..but hey its got that badge and the hertiage that goes with it!

Precisely the reason that I have never yet met a Ferrari driver yet that wasn't a complete and utter ****** (apologies in advance to any drivers that are neither of the above, that I have never met). Who cares about the badge and heritage? Posers, thats who!

Capn Notarious
26th Aug 2005, 20:54
Well it is about time to mention Herr Willi Studers REVOX.

26th Aug 2005, 21:13
I was always told BOSE stood for "Better Off Somewhere Else" :-)

Dr Bose has been subject to numerous litigation attempts over the years - if you want to read the opinions of recording engineers check this Link (http://groups.google.co.uk/group/rec.audio.misc/browse_thread/thread/e224409f9771df42/7ed499b1984cc002?q=901&rnum=1&hl=en#7ed499b1984cc002)

Note the remark relating to Bose's discovery that it was cheaper to fit 6 mass-produced consumer-grade drivers than 1 pro-grade Volt / B+W/ ATC-type drive unit.

No1 Google hit on search term "Dr Bose Lawsuit": BOSE Acoustimass - Better Profits Through Marketing

Taken from first [email protected]
The ONLY reason that Amar put the single driver on the front of the 901 was to escape
prosecution for patent infringement by the guy he stole the reflecting sound idea from, Dan
Greenfield of Danby Radio in Philadelphia. As Dan would recite at the slightest hint of the
subject of Bose by a customer in his store, Amar walked in one day in the mid '60's to peddle
his quarter-sphere multidriver corner-box speaker, finding only Dan's wife in the store at the
time. Mrs. Greenfield, after hearing Bose's junk, said "I don't think your speakers sound
nearly as good as my husband's." She then played a set of Dan's reflecting speakers. Bose
immediately dropped his sales pitch & listened for a while, reputedly taking some notes.
Within a few months, he started marketing the 901. Shortly thereafter, Dan received a letter
from Amar's lawyer, stating that it was felt that the added front driver made the design
different enough to "escape Mr. Greenfield's patent umbrella". So, besides making some of the
worst speakers in history, Amar Bose is also a complete slimeball

B+O would be a similar case - nice casework, shame about the circuitry; open it up if you don't believe me - you'll note pedestrian-grade op-amps, "efficient" amplifier topologies and average grade passive components.


26th Aug 2005, 21:40
B&O should be thought of as artwork as much as performance audio. Like a Porshe 911 or a Harley Springer Softail, there are much better performance options available, but few so nice at which to look.

In 50 years, B&O stuff will be in the modern art museums, valued for their design more than their specifications. So if you have an original Miro in your living room, you really don't want anything but B&O occupying the space next to it.

The Bose wave radio is excellent sound from a very small package. It's not audiophile level, but I think for what it is, a table radio, it does the best job of anything I've seen out there. Way overpriced, though.

26th Aug 2005, 21:44
B+O strikes me as "off the shelf style" - un-individual, conservative and bland, but if you're happy that's all that matters I guess.

For Art, try this Link (http://www.electronluv.com/html/eluvlab/eluvlab.jsp) (It is pricey though...not wise if you have kids either...)


26th Aug 2005, 23:15
Would you turn a Ferrari down if someone gave you one? I bet you would keep it and drive it with pride as would most sane people...Also alot of Ferrari owners do not ever drive them but simply put them in a nice room and look at them...I know of a person who had an F-40 and one day he just sat infront of it for 5 hours solid...some may say thats sad some may understand why he just sat and looked...personally, I understand why!

26th Aug 2005, 23:33
many thanks for all the posts - much appreciated. off to the shop over the weekend or next week!


27th Aug 2005, 09:32
Make sure you get a free B & O bottle opener off them ;) !

27th Aug 2005, 11:31
Yaaaaahhhoooo...what about some of these??


:ok: :ok:

27th Aug 2005, 11:57
Whatever the general opinion of Bose hi-fi systems, I would recommend to anyone who travels a lot on long haul flights to buy a pair of Quietcomfort 2 headphones. Apast from making the inflight movie much more enjoyable, (unless it has Hugh Grant in it!), they cut down the background noise considerably.

(Much cheaper in the U.S than in the UK)

Cyclic Hotline
27th Aug 2005, 20:24
I would never turn anything down if it was free! I might drive that Ferrari for a bit, might even keep it, because if I didn't have to pay for it, I might be able to afford to insure, maintain and gas it! ;)

But then again, I would most likely sell it and do something more fun with the money. :ok:

Also alot of Ferrari owners do not ever drive them but simply put them in a nice room and look at them...I know of a person who had an F-40 and one day he just sat infront of it for 5 hours solid...some may say thats sad some may understand why he just sat and looked...personally, I understand why!

Yep, very sad. Very, very sad. If I sat down in front of any car for 5 hours and looked at a car (or anything for that matter), the next stop would be the funny farm! I can't even sit in front of the TV for 1 hour, let alone 5!

If I ever have the urge to put a car in a nice room in my house, I would anticipate the exact same outcome. If I ever tied up any colossal sum of money with something along those lines, then other than expecting a huge return on investment, it would be the same outcome.

In my opinion, most of the people that are so keen to own things of this nature believe that the item will make them something that they are currently not? This is the power of advertising, and I would have to admit to buying many products based on good advertising, but all it got the advertiser, was my attention to investigate the product.

Quality and value always drive my decision, not whether other peoples perceptions of me will be heightened, or if I will feel better about myself because I am driving a fancy car, living in a mansion, or worse still, living beyond my means!:ooh:

I guess you could call me cheap!:cool:

27th Aug 2005, 22:04
Well it is about time to mention Herr Willi Studers REVOX. I did Capn... this is my tuner, the A76. Over 2 decades old and working as good as new...


28th Feb 2006, 00:55
Forgot to say - bought a pair of Form 2 Headphones. Definately recommended :)

28th Feb 2006, 01:39
20 years ago when I bought the Quad amplifier, a Revox tuner, Thorens turntable, I had no more money left for the radiators, so after ample listening i choose B&W DM6. Still have the original set-up and works like a dream.

Now there's a thing! A man who knows quality! In 1970, when I got posted abroad, I bought a Quad 33/303, a Quad FM tuner, a Thorens turntable with an SME arm and a Shure V15 pickup, a Revox A77 tape recorder, and B&W DM3 speakers (they were the big ones at the time). I listened to Quad electrostatics but they were lacking in bass for the sort of music I like listening to.

Today, the same equipment is still in the lounge and used every day. The only changes since 1972 are that there's now an Arcam CD player connected to the "Radio 2" socket, and I modified the Quad tuner to provide "muting" between stations.

I don't think there's anything on the market to match that equipment, apart from the speakers, and comparisons with friends' equipment and frighteningly expensive speakers didn't make me want to upgrade.

Buy quality - it lasts!

28th Feb 2006, 04:29
I've always thought that you were paying a lot for the styling with B & O gear. I will second the Shure comment. If you are OK with in ear canal phones the Shure E 2 / E 3 are very good sound, although not cheap. They do block out ambient sound though, which is ok in a crowded cabin but you can't hear someone trying to talk to you if that matters.

28th Feb 2006, 07:23
Used to have a pair of Quad ELS years ago, had to sell them as they wouldn“t fit in the average RAF mess room. :{

Nowadays I make do with a Naim CD transport, Musical Fidelity A3CR pre & power amp and a pair of B&W 803s.

28th Feb 2006, 07:29
I used to have a B & O/Thorens/Shure/KEF setup that I took out of use when I needed something more compact. I finally got round to putting it in the local paper (pre - ebay) and the phone didn't stop ringing for days. There is a strong collectors' market for quality vintage hi-fi stuff, so you might have a few quid sitting in the attic that you had forgotten about.

Capn Notarious
28th Feb 2006, 09:17
I have one of these
This one sold for fifty pounds less, than I bought mine, all those years ago.
Now that my hearing is deteriorating with the dna chain, no point in changing for a new system cause I'd not appreciate the difference!