Bose's SoundDock 10 iPod speaker measures 17 inches wide by 9.6 inches deep by 8.7 inches high, and weighs 18.5 pounds. Although the Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air (*Est. $600) is wider, at 25.2 inches, the SoundDock draws far more complaints about its size, perhaps due to its blocky design. One expert speculates that this unit may be intended as an answer for people who are put off by the radical designs of some of its competitors, including the Zeppelin Air. Another reviewer likes the design, saying it gives the whole system "a classy look." The SoundDock 10 has absolutely no button controls; instead you either use a remote -- which can't navigate your iPod menus -- or navigate directly from the iPod/iPhone.
Although the SoundDock 10's sound is good, playing clear and loud at high volumes, with nice treble and restrained base, this unit draws several rounds of criticism for not supplying what it should, given the price. For example: Jeremy Horwitz, editor-in-chief of iLounge, calls the features on the similarly priced Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air "steps up over Bose's design," and declares that the SoundDock 10 lacks the "wow" characteristic that speakers in this price range should have. If you're willing to spring for what one reviewer calls a "ridiculously overpriced $150 insert," you can use the SoundDock 10 for Bluetooth streaming audio. The reviewer couldn't bring himself to purchase the insert, but tested it in a store and deems the performance "acceptable."
We found the best review of the SoundDock 10 on iLounge.com, where the editor-in-chief compares it to other speakers in multiple price ranges. CNET and What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision magazine both provide detailed reviews, while a short mention in Esquire provides a somewhat dissenting expert opinion. Amazon.com, the Apple Store and BestBuy.com both offer a substantial number of user reviews.
Jeremy Horwitz, iLounge's editor-in-chief calls the SoundDock10 "somewhat of a curiosity" and recommends it, but not as highly as other models. He compares the SoundDock 10 to lower-priced models with similar performance, and to same-priced models, which outperform the SoundDock.
Review: Bose SoundDock 10, Jeremy Horwitz, Nov. 6, 2009
2. What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision
What Hi-Fi? originally ranked the Bose SoundDock at 3 stars out of 5 because of its high price; a price drop earned it the current 4-star rating. Unlike most reviewers, What Hi-Fi? editors feel the SoundDock is a decent value, and call its sound "big and powerful, but lacking a touch of finesse." They like the SoundDock 10's Bluetooth capability, but don't mention the extra cost of purchasing the Bluetooth receiver.
Review: Bose SoundDock 10, Editors of What Hi-Fi?, Not Dated
In this lengthy, multi-page review, CNET's David Carnoy declares that he likes the "classy look" of the speaker system, and notes that the SoundDock 10 doesn't distort when played loudly. However, he says that this unit is "not for everyone," and feels that at this price point, the $150 Bluetooth transmitter should have been included for free.
Review: Bose SoundDock 10, David Carnoy, Oct. 2, 2009
4. Esquire magazine
Unlike most reviewers, Sonnenfeld seems to like the SoundDock 10's weight, and feels that the heavier speakers contribute to a better sound. He very briefly praises the SoundDock 10 for its "big, loud, impressive, undistorted music" before moving on to discuss other models, although he doesn't make any direct comparisons.
Review: The Best Places to Dock Your iPod, Barry Sonnenfeld, April 13, 2010
More than 75 Amazon.com user reviews give the SoundDock 10 a 4.5-star average rating. One user calls the SoundDock "very, very nice," while another puts the Bose SoundDock 10 through a "blind listen" test against the Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin; his wife, who couldn't see either speaker system, preferred the Zeppelin every time.
Review: Bose SoundDock 10 Digital Music System, Contributors to Amazon.com
6. Apple Store
More than 35 reviewers contribute to the Bose SoundDock 10's overall 4.5-star rating. Most reviewers rave about the sound quality and feel the unit is pricey, but mostly worth it. A few wish they could turn off the "overexaggerated bass," and one reviewer who owns both the SoundDock 10 and the Bose SoundDock Portable (*Est. $350) says he prefers the Portable model.
Review: Bose SoundDock 10 Digital Music System, Contributors to the Apple Store
About 30 BestBuy.com users are uniformly thrilled with the SoundDock 10, giving it an overall 4.9-star rating. They love the unit's sound, but one user warns that the audio quality suffers in tiled rooms, adding that, "If you don't have a good room to allow for good acoustics, this would be a colossal waste of money."
Review: Bose - SoundDock 10 Digital Music System for Apple iPod, Contributors to BestBuy.com