Two years ago, Bose released one of the best onboard TV sound systems I’ve ever heard in the flesh. The Bose VideoWave used sound “cannons” to shoot sound out of the sides of the TV to produce eerily realistic surround sound — all while mounted on the wall. A similar technology developed by the military sends out two ultrasonic waves which when mixed create a loud sound at the point of impact.
For the first VideoWave, while the sound system was cutting-edge it was designed around the TV panel available at the time, which meant that by the time the product was released the panel was potentially out of date. I never got an opportunity to review the unit properly, but even on casual inspection during the demonstration the black levels were fairly average.
The VideoWave II resembles the original version, with a simple remote control and separate breakout box that incorporates an iPod dock. The breakout includes four HDMI ports and two component inputs plus two USB ports.
Bose doesn’t include any specifications for the sound system — power output and such — but if the system is anything like the original, the onboard, transmission-line-style subwoofer puts out a lot of hurt and the system should go plenty loud for most living spaces.
While the TV does come with a stand, be aware that if you are mounting the 120Hz TV the sound system necessitates a thicker cabinet than most, with a depth of 6 inches.
Of course, the system is a Bose and priced appropriately, with a retail price of $4,999 for the 46-inch and $5,999 for the 55-inch.