When Bose announced this week it was about to reveal " a game-changing new concept in home entertainment", it started tongues wagging.
But even the revealing of a Yahtzee-playing orangutan would've been less surprising than the idea that Bose was moving into the TV marketplace.
Bose just doesn't make TVs. Well, it does now. For $5349 a pop.
But then, the 46 inch VideoWave is technically NOT a television. Not only does it lack a tuner, it also sports a standard CCFL-backlit LCD panel, rather than the LED-lit equivalent popular with most manufacturers these days.
Bose's latest offering should be seen as an all-in-one sound system that -- that happens to have a screen.
There are no external speakers… but they have to be somewhere, right?
Well, a side view tells you where they're tucked. In fact, its footprint might confused for Sasquatch. But then, when you cram six subwoofer drivers and seven mid-range surround sound drivers -- 16 speakers total -- a tiny waistline just wasn't in the cards. Make no mistake, there is some serious air being pushed out of this monster.
When Bose executives demonstrated the new system to the consumer electronics press, bass notes from timpani in an orchestral recording shook the large room. In a jazz recording of a duet with a clarinet and a trumpet, the two instruments seemed to be in different places.
While its picture quality isn't going to rival the Panasonics or Samsungs out there, neither brand has anything quite like it. It's most likely to appeal to those who want robust audio performance, but don't have the space for a world-class 5.1 system.
Another demographic sure to love it are the tidy-types that cannot abide having a home theater system cluttering their living rooms with the multiple speakers and wires that such a set-up requires.
It even comes with in-home installation included.
Of course, I don't need to tell you how much of a TV and a speaker system you could buy for $5349 if you don't mind actually seeing those speakers.
The new televisions will be sold exclusively through Bose's own stores. They go on sale Oct. 14.