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Rating and Reviews: Bose L1 Model II and Bass

A slim, vertical array of 24 speakers, the Bose L1 Model II is a complete PA system. This package includes a Bose B1 bass module and T1 ToneMatch mixer.

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"Solo Acoustic/Vocal Artists - do yourself a favor and buy an L1 system today!" submitted November 2, 2010

By a customer from knology.net
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Musical Background: Solo Acoustic Guitar/Vocals
Music Style: Beach/TropRock, Country, Acoustic Rock
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
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Sound: Awesome - crisp, clear, precise. Great vocals and acoustic guitar sound. Some venues require you to crank up the bass, but easy to do with the T1. Feature: Love the built-in effects on the T1. Used to have to carry an acoustic guitar floor box modeler/tuner -- no longer needed since the T1 has a tuner and effects. The compact and lightweight system is great for a solo acoustic guy like me -- easy to carry around. Since I can set it close by - no need to carry a monitor. This system makes load in/out a breeze compared to the traditional amp/mixer/speaker/speaker stands/monitor/guitar effects, etc... setup. Ease of Use: Takes me about 5 minutes to load in, about 3-5 minutes to set up the L1, then about another 5 minutes to set up my mic and guitar, and 5 minutes to sound check and tweek. Can't imagine how it could be any easier. The T1 was really easy to learn. Would be nice if the tuner was a separate button so you didn't have to go around the dial every time you needed to check tune, but otherwise, easy to use. Quality: Still kind of new, but appears well built. I carry my own gear, but if other people might be handling/loading your gear, night want to invest in the SKB cases. Ordered a T1 Power Supply to use as a back up should my T1 ethernet cable get damaged or if I use my T1 with another system other than the L1ModII --- the first one I got didn't work right (T1 display flashed on/off rapidly and never powered up), but exchanged it and works fine now. Value: Yes - Bose is a little pricey. It took me a few months to make the decision, but well worth it for the sound and ease-of-use. As a solo artist, I don't bust my back hauling stuff around. I was having problems with my shoulders from carrying stuff and lifting speakers onto stands with the old system, but no issue with the L1. Maybe I can write it off as a medical deduction? Also, the T1 packs a lot of features in for the money. I added up the cost of all the gear I used to carry and compared it to the L1 Model II with T1 and the difference is only a few hundred bucks -- well worth it. Manufacturer Support: So far, so good. The Bose tech responded fairly quickly to my User Forum Posting regarding the T1 Power Supply issue described above (in the Quality section) and advised me to exchange it with my vendor. I also check the User Forum now and then to see if I can learn anything new, or offer advice to other users. The Wow Factor: It is really cool looking. First-time audiences can't believe the kind of sound that comes out of such a compact system. Even though the L1 tower system has been out a few years, it still draws lots of attention for its modern, non-traditional looks. Overall: As a solo acoustic artist/vocalist, once you try the L1, you'll never go back to the traditional PA system, at least not for small/med venues. I am hanging on to my traditional mixer/amp/speaker/monitor system for large/festival type venues, but for what I do most - small clubs, back decks, house parties -- the L1 is all you need.
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"L1 Model II - big sound, small frame." submitted July 7, 2010

Jon from zZounds
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Musical Background: Active Musician
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ZZOUNDS CREW REVIEW
Sound: With all the options available for eq'ing and voicing by channel, as well as the small profile of the system, you might be tempted to think that this system requires a lot of work to sound good. Well, you can rest assured that the technnology included in the ToneMatch engine is not necessary to make just about anything you send through it sound great (though it helps!) I would recommend additional bass modules to people planning to send low end-heavy sound sources through here. At the show we used it for, though, it was primarily for acoustic guitar, vocals, and an mp3 player between sets, so we were just fine. Feature: This is an area where Bose really shines. The ToneMatch system is, basically, an extremely compact mixer designed to help you get the right sound for every instrument in short order. With preset profiles for many of the most popular instruments out there, it was trivial to find the right mix for everything we plugged in. The Shure SM58 we use for vocals had its own preset, and though our singer's Martin guitar did not have its own profile, there was a similar model available to switch to. It was a big help in getting set up quickly. Beyond the profiles, the ToneMatch system also has onboard effects, so we could get just the right amount of reverb on vocals, and one-touch per-channel mutes, for easy transitioning between playing a show and between-set music. Ease of Use: Extremely simple to assemble - I left the stage for about 7 minutes between load-in and performance, and by the time I got back, our singer (who'd never seen the thing before) had the thing assembled and ready to go! As far as getting the mix proper, I could see it taking a little bit longer for somebody who's never seen the ToneMatch system before. However, as I've seen the manual and been talked through it before, it took no more than a few minutes to get the mix from from turn-on to show-ready. As with anything as technical as a mixer, there's just a little bit of time necessary to get used to the buttons and dials, but the ToneMatch is exceptionally easy to learn. Don't worry, you don't have to be a professional soundman - I'm certainly not! Quality: I can't quite give this a 10, as I don't own the system, and borrowed it to use at a show. However, despite its slight frame, the components all seem quite sturdy, and other sources I've read indicate that it's as reliable as it seems. Manufacturer Support: I personally have not dealt with Bose's support team for purchased products, so I can't give a numeric rating here, but every time I've had to contact Bose to ask them a question, they've been nothing less than stellar in their ability and willingness to help. I've got to believe this dedication carries over to their technical support. The Wow Factor: PA systems don't really get more attractive than these Bose systems. At an outdoor performance I brought these to, everybody from band members and former music retail workers to vendors and old-folks audience members commented on the sleek looks. When you show up at a gig with this system, people know you mean business. Overall: From what I've read about Bose, they seem to be a company that takes an unorthodox approach to common problems, and this tends to set their products apart from others. The L1 Model II system is definitely no exception, and offers a fuller array of features and controls than any all-in-one PA solution I've seen before.
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"Bose...as advertised!!!" submitted May 1, 2012

By Todd W in Iron Mountain, MI
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Musical Background: Acoustic and electric 6 & 12 string guitars; Acoustic guitarist/lead vocalist professionally
Music Style: 60's-2010's Pop/Rock covers
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VERIFIED BUYER
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Overall: I am an acoustic performer who performs a wide variety of music onstage and I am thrilled beyond belief to be playing through the Bose L1-II Sound System. I play out every weekend in a variety of acoustic settings and this system is phenomenal!! First, the sevice and ease of ordering through zZounds was awesome. Knowledgeable and friendly assistance provided me with a quick but thorough ordering experience. Then on a Saturday morning of a gig, my system arrived. Four boxes of pure heaven. Super easy to assemble, a little tweaking of the eq's and effects and I was ready for some fun hours of playing. Sound coverage was unbelievable. People who were accustomed to seeing me play with two mains on stands, marveled at the simplicity of a single 7 ft. tower radiating my vocals and guitar playing. I ordered the single Bass pack and there is more than enough low end vibe for me and my percussionist with a kick pedal on a world beat kit, let alone when i am just solo. Playing my Taylor 814 through it is sweet. I tweaked the sound somewhat although, you may be satisfied with the auto settings for individual guitars and microphones. To each his own. All in all, my experience has been nothing short of true musical bliss. Quality all the way through. Aesthetics and performance, in my opinion, is unmatched. Another superior Bose product!!
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"Very Clean" submitted December 20, 2012

By Tim O'Donnell in Stuart, FL
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Musical Background: The Nouveaux Honkies
Music Style: Americana
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VERIFIED BUYER
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Overall: Ordered the L1 model 2 for duo gigs. 2 vocals, guitar and violin. Used it on our first live job last night and it was great. Until that point we have used all QSC and presonus gear for the last three years. When i got the system i set up a single QSC K10 through a Presonus 16:0 and the Bose with its tone match. Both flat EQ. The sound of the vocal was basically the same from 30 feet away. The volume was set at the same DB. Both very clean. The clear difference was the coverage. The bose shined at the amount of coverage and the the amount of drop off in volume was also noticed in the QSC. I sat in front of the Bose 5 feet with no feedback. I didn't get feed back in the QSC but with it on a stand at 7' up it sounded muffled when i was sitting down and would prefer to have a monitor. As for acoustic guitar, the sound was rounder, fuller and not as harsh on the bose. I think it is a great product. Right now for our full band i will still use a presonus 16:4 and either QSC KW 153 with subs or our K10 set up with sub because it sound great, but i will be exploring the options of getting another Bose system. I would love to hear a full band set up with the bose. I think a drum set with earthwork mics would be great. My wish list would be a lo pass filter on the tonematch. 4 xlr inputs and an rca in for an ipod. On the power base it would be nice if the analog in was also XLR. I plugged my presonus board into the bose and have to say i like the Presonus preamps better and the detail of EQ of the presonus is better that the tone match. For a duo or single it sure is nice to have that tiny tonematch mixer mounted on the pole or a mic stand. The effects in the tonematch are great. All in all this is a killer system. 2 k10's, speaker stands and a mixer that will sound as good as the tone match will run around the same money. The bose is super dynamic, clean and the sound envelopes the player. It sounds big even at lower volume. We play a vast mixture of music from early blues, oldtime country, western swing, and a ton of original music. We don't just need loud, We need clean sound, dynamics, and vocals heard and understood. This thing does a great job.
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"THE BEST. Look over my spelling errors, my spell check isn't working." submitted June 2, 2010

By a customer from embarqmail.com
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Musical Background: Active Musician
Music Style: Southern Gospel
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VERIFIED BUYER
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Sound: As I got older, equipment was harder to handle. I bought this unit and nothing weighs over 26 lb. I went from a bus to a Honda CR-V. I have two guys that sing with me so I had to get the ToneMatch. You couldn't ask for a better sound. If I do a large outside event, I take along a Active speaker and it fits into the CR-V also. Feature: You can tweek each imput to get what you want the sound to be with the ToneMatch or if you have a board, you can plug it into the L1 Model 11. If you use a mixing board, make sure it has all the plug-in already in it like reverb, etc. The ToneMatch already has all of these. Ease of Use: Setup is fast. You can save sceans and simply recall them. I use this mostly in churches and if a church is like another one that you have saved a scean, one button has you ready to go. Quality: The best system you can buy and I've had them all in the 50 years of playing Southern Gospel Music. Value: A little pricey, but worth it. Manufacturer Support: I'm just guessing the best as I have never had to use this service. The Wow Factor: People are blowen away when you bring this system into a church. Everyone is used to big speakers and roll around board systems. They are not expecting to big sound to come from this system. But you must get the bass subwoofer to go along with the L1. Overall: This is the last system I will have to buy.
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"Changed my whole business overnight!" submitted October 13, 2009

By a customer from marcoleary.com
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Musical Background: Professional Mobile Entertainer for 20+ Years
Music Style: Dance
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VERIFIED BUYER
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Sound: I have been running Pro Sounds in Kansas City for some time now. This PAS system decreases my load in time and increases my impact. Feature: Great for small or large venues. Need more umph? Just add a second or third base cabinet... Ease of Use: Can be a learning curve, but you'll get the hang of it within a gig or two. Quality: I beat mine up as less as possible, but it happens. Made from high quality materials that were designed for mobile applications and the wear and tear that accompanies it. Value: You have to gauge this one for yourself. You could probably buy 4~5 small powered speakers for the price of this unit. It's definitely worth it if you charge for your performances correctly. Manufacturer Support: My buddy bent a part, BOSE cross shipped him a new one next day. He paid for shipping only. The Wow Factor: Small, thin, geek`y, but in a good way! Overall: You just can't beat em!
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"Very Happy" submitted December 17, 2013

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Overall: I purchased a Bose L1 II system with double bass a couple of years ago. Did not get the tonematch. We use this system for band performances and set it up right behind the band. (We use an unpowered 12 channel mixer for five instruments: guitar, fiddle, upright bass, piano and drums). The system will fill the room with sound but, unless I really crank it, there is no feedback. Understand that I am talking about setting it up RIGHT behind us (less than five feet to the closest mic) and turning it up loud enough to be heard in a club with 150 people talking and drinking. The amazing thing...and I swear this mystifies me...is that we can be heard clearly at the far end of the room, but we are not blown out by the sound on stage. I'm not sure how that is possible, but it works. The system thus is our monitor as well. The stage is flooded with sound. We can all hear the music very well. The system is not cheap, but it does a very good job. I recommend it to everyone. Oh, and it is light and sets up quick.
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"Absolutely Perfect" submitted July 14, 2014

By Adam B in Bradenton, FL
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Musical Background: 35 year veteran in music industry, 4 Top 50 songs to my credit. Vocals/guitar.
Music Style: originals, "classic" country, rock, AC
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Overall: I am a professional singer/songwriter, and have been performing for more than 30 years. This BOSE L1 Model II system w/ B1 Bass and Tonematch is absolutely perfect for any gigs that I do, from 50 to 500 people. The sound is clear, effects are outstanding, and the Tonematch system is a real time saver. two enthusiastic thumbs up!
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