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Latest post 05-22-2008 6:21 AM by j0hnbarker. 16 replies.
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  • 05-21-2008 11:40 AM

    Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Ok - the worst B&O product post made me think about getting a Beosound 2, as I've been looking to replace my iPod Nano for a while now, and some of the positive comments made me think again about getting one. I'm well aware of some of its drawbacks with regard to the lack of display interface etc., but at the end of the day every piece of AV equipment I own is B&O now (iPod excepting) and I've always liked the looks of the BS 2. Also, I'm hopefully about to take a different career direction that will mean that I might have time to fill on journeys by listening to some music, so I quite fancy a new MP3 player to listen to (but not a Beosound 6).

    What I'd like to know is:

    1) What would BS2 in good condition with A8s and a decent SD card be worth?

    2) Is there any noticeable difference in sound quality over an iPod?

    3) Will the BS2 integrate with iTunes? I'm a Mac user, so would value keeping this, unless B&O has a good workable proprietary package for managing music collections?

    4) Am I mad?

    TIA

    John

    President, Beomaster 8000 Appreciation Society

  • 05-21-2008 11:56 AM In reply to

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    1) What would BS2 in good condition with A8s and a decent SD card be worth?

    i sold mine for 200 usd w/o the headphones

    2) Is there any noticeable difference in sound quality over an iPod?

    yes, the bs2 is better

    3) Will the BS2 integrate with iTunes? I'm a Mac user, so would value keeping this, unless B&O has a good workable proprietary package for managing music collections?

    yes and no, and the main reason i sold it. it was very akward to me w/ little patience.
    perhaps someone could be more specific... sorry.

    4) Am I mad?

    nope, 'cuz now i am thinking the same thing! lol -maybe i should have kept it!
    just before i sold mine -i was considering rigging it into a cupholder on my a8l -as it is a bose car ;-(

    ...back to the future for me, d'oh -now i need to find another one!

    • B&o bottle opener
  • 05-21-2008 11:56 AM In reply to

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Hi, i have owned the Beosound 2 three times now, i always end up going back to it, i think the reason is the superior sound quality, the fact i can use it in my pocket and its sturdiness.

    To answer your questions :

    1. i would expect to pay around £120 - £150 for a good condition one - make sure the A8s are real though as some of the ebay listings are including fakes at the moment. (look at the case , it should be thick leather, the A8s themselves are harder to spot - check the ends of the ear hook , they should be black , not silver)

    2. Yes, the internal amplifier in the beosound 2 is the best i have heard , its dynamics are amazing. I havent found a better sounding player and i have had a LOT.

    3. I dont use Itunes , i believe it integrates fine. I use drag and drop, with the latest Beosound firmware you press a couple of keys and it rescans the player after you have updated the contents.

     

     

    Doomlordis Scottish B&O Fan , Father , Husband.
  • 05-21-2008 12:37 PM In reply to

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Hi John,

    I'm glad to hear you are considering a BeoSound 2. I have had mine for 5 years, bought from the great dealer in Boston and still use it as my current MP3 player. Only recently I have thought about sending it to B&O for a replacement battery. I have also used the same pair of A8s which came with my BeoSound 2.

    I've seen a BeoSound 2, with A8s, a 1GB / 2GB SD card, docking station, BeoPlayer software, original box & manuals, and the B&O leather case sell on eBay UK for £80.00 - £110.00 including delivery. I think this is a fantastic deal and I'm sure BeoSound 2 will become a B&O classic in time. Unlike BeoSound 6, the BeoSound 2 is all B&O and it shows.

    The BeoSound 2 and A8 combo is the best sounding MP3 player I have heard. iPods have very poor sound in my opinion, even with the A8s let alone the rubbish earphones Apple provide you with, however I have heard a high bit rate track on an iPod Touch and the new iPod Nano which has been an improvement to my ears.

    As for iTunes, I'm not sure whether BeoSound 2 can work with it or not, but I have never tried because I have always found BeoPlayer very simple to use and therefore didn't feel that I needed to try different software to upload my music to BeoSound 2.

    For some, it's impossible to have an MP3 player without a screen and I can understand. I wasn't put off by no screen when I bought my BeoSound 2. I saw it as an advantage to its battery life which of course it is, and more importantly now - without a screen, it hasn't dated! I used to ask friends what they thought it was when they saw it for the first time. Now I prefer asking how old do you think it is. The answer is always brand new or no less than a year. So with an undated and stylish design and amongst the best sound you'll get from an MP3 player, I would certainly buy one if I were in your shoes!

    There is a disadvantage with BeoSound 2, which is quite a big deal. BeoSound 2 runs on the ancient USB 1.1, instead of USB 2.0 as you will certainly be used to with your iPod. It doesn't take a night and day to upload an album, but it will take about 5 minutes. The largest sized SD card you can use is a 2GB and I wouldn't try using a bigger one because it would then get a little tricky to skip to the album or playlist you're after. I have the B&O brown leather case which has two pouches, one for BeoSound 2 and the other I use to pocket 2 other SD cards.

    Yes, yes I love BeoSound 2, so let us (or atleast me) know if you choose to get one! Cool

  • 05-21-2008 1:20 PM In reply to

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Thanks guys - your experiences mean a lot to me. Am definitely on the look out for one now. I guess eBay is the best place, unless anyone has a good one they want to part with?!

    John 

    President, Beomaster 8000 Appreciation Society

  • 05-21-2008 2:58 PM In reply to

    • Affineur
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 04-27-2008
    • United States
    • Posts 90
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    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    I agree with the previous posts. I have owned the Beosound 2 since the introduction and have been completely satisfied with the performance. I currently own 3 (one for travel, one for my main residence, and one for the secondary residence). The traveling unit has seen extensive use (daily in my office for 4-8h, 200-250 days a year) and was entirely refurbished by B&O US two years ago due to a worn out key pad and increasingly short battery life. The technicians at B&O indicated that they had never seen a Beosound 2 that had been so "used". It is a beautiful, iconic, and rugged design. I have dropped mine innumerable times (including to the street in NYC as I was getting out of a taxi and down a the staircase at the Lincoln Memorial!!) with nary an issue (although it does exhibit some scratches and dents). The design is as appealing as in 2002.... perhaps it will be a classic and displayed at MOMA some day. The tactile nature of the controls and the fit in the hand are marvels.

    It works well with iTunes (as this is my operating environment) however the recent addition of firmware to support the transfer of music via a separate card reader has substantially increased the flexibility of the device. I now use the (also beautiful) charging station for charging only as the card reader solution for filling SD cards is excellent.

    As far as the (lack of a) display, my solution has been to have cards dedicated to "genres" and this is sufficient for me to navigate through the content. I do not need to have my entire music library with me at all times and indeed I have found that I have developed greater appreciation for certain works due to the fact that I had to listen to them, in contrast to moving on to some other "shiny bright" work readily available in a larger extant library.

    Finally, just as is the case with much of the B&O experience, wanting to be different while being focused on design is a core attribute to long term ownership. Due to my father's devotion to the brand (and his extensive buying habits) I was infected early in life and my extended family has a peaked appreciation for B&O as we have many older pieces still in circulation and still being enjoyed as much as 40 years later. I expect the Beosound 2 to be one of these.

    Seek simplicity and distrust it. Alfred North Whitehead
  • 05-21-2008 3:50 PM In reply to

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Isnt it amazing how long the battery in the beosound is good for , 5 years and mine is still 80 -90% of its original capacity. My ipods battery died completely in 2 years!

    I have a plan to try to replace it with a higher capacity battery, looking at the battery unit it should be easy i just need to find out the capacity and voltage of the original first.

     

    Anyone know? 

    Doomlordis Scottish B&O Fan , Father , Husband.
  • 05-21-2008 4:40 PM In reply to

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Thanks Affineur

    It's really pleasing to see how many people have taken the time to praise the Beosound 2 - it must be a special piece of kit, in spite of some of the more obvious omissions when compared to the plethora of alternatives out there. I guess sometimes the simple things just work the best!

    One thing I did pick up on: am I right in thinking that if you use a card reader you can get a quicker file transfer rate than using the dock? Henry did point out that the file transfer was slow using the dock and the older USB format. Does this get around it, and is it easy to upgrade the firmware?

    President, Beomaster 8000 Appreciation Society

  • 05-21-2008 5:05 PM In reply to

    • Jandyt
    • Top 10 Contributor
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    • Joined on 04-01-2007
    • Clitheroe, Lancashire, UK
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    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Thanks for starting this thread John.
    Up until now, I had no intentions of ever having a Beosound 2. I see those that do have them, enthuse greatly, I will get one shortly.

    Andy T.

    Poor me, never win owt!

  • 05-21-2008 5:19 PM In reply to

    • Puncher
    • Top 10 Contributor
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    • Joined on 03-27-2007
    • Nr. Durham, NE England.
    • Posts 9,588
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    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Jandyt:

    Thanks for starting this thread John.
    Up until now, I had no intentions of ever having a Beosound 2. I see those that do have them, enthuse greatly, I will get one shortly.

    Andy T.

    I can understand an enthusiast having a BS2 but, with any degree of practicallty, surely a big(ger) iPod wins the day! - more songs, at a higher (even lossless) resolution, wins the day. (I like to cart my whole catalogue around with me - you never know when the urge strikes)!

     

    Generally speaking, you aren't learning much if your lips are moving.

  • 05-21-2008 5:25 PM In reply to

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Puncher:
    Jandyt:

    Thanks for starting this thread John.
    Up until now, I had no intentions of ever having a Beosound 2. I see those that do have them, enthuse greatly, I will get one shortly.

    Andy T.

    I can understand an enthusiast having a BS2 but, with any degree of practicallty, surely a big(ger) iPod wins the day! - more songs, at a higher (even lossless) resolution, wins the day. (I like to cart my whole catalogue around with me - you never know when the urge strikes)!

     

    No probs Andy. I'm genuinely surprised by how much people love them, in much the same way as I was about Avants until I got my RF earlier this year. I'm definitely getting one now!

    Puncher - if you're used to a 2Gb Nano like I am, it's no problem to have to be selective about what songs you carry with you. I really don't rate the sound quality of my Nano at all, so am swayed by the promise of better quality from the BS2 :) 

    President, Beomaster 8000 Appreciation Society

  • 05-21-2008 5:25 PM In reply to

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Puncher:
    Jandyt:

    Thanks for starting this thread John.
    Up until now, I had no intentions of ever having a Beosound 2. I see those that do have them, enthuse greatly, I will get one shortly.

    Andy T.

    I can understand an enthusiast having a BS2 but, with any degree of practicallty, surely a big(ger) iPod wins the day! - more songs, at a higher (even lossless) resolution, wins the day. (I like to cart my whole catalogue around with me - you never know when the urge strikes)!

     

    No probs Andy. I'm genuinely surprised by how much people love them, in much the same way as I was about Avants until I got my RF earlier this year. I'm definitely getting one now!

    Puncher - if you're used to a 2Gb Nano like I am, it's no problem to have to be selective about what songs you carry with you. I really don't rate the sound quality of my Nano at all, so am swayed by the promise of better quality from the BS2 :) 

    President, Beomaster 8000 Appreciation Society

  • 05-21-2008 5:52 PM In reply to

    • Affineur
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 04-27-2008
    • United States
    • Posts 90
    • Bronze Member

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    j0hnbarker,

    Yes, and I clearly did not state the obvious. My experience is that it is much faster. Also, the independence from the BS2 base with respect to music management allows you to put the base anywhere you want since you do not have to get to the USB plug. Mine now sits in a spot where it can nicely display the BS2.

    As I understand the workings, the new firmware allows the BS2 to scan a SD card that has been "filled" with a card reader (scan operation on BS2: hold the two "down" buttons down for two seconds and wait for an audio feedback). The card reader and your USB type will control the speed at which files can be transferred. Unfortunately the B&O site link to a supplementary guide on how to use the card reader with a BS2 is not active at this time. However, after querying on this board about some issues I was having elicited an immediate response from Keith on the essential verbiage from that supplemental guide (see thread "Beosound 2 and card readers").

    Seek simplicity and distrust it. Alfred North Whitehead
  • 05-21-2008 6:20 PM In reply to

    • Stan
    • Top 150 Contributor
    • Joined on 04-17-2007
    • Posts 593
    • Gold Member

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    j0hnbarker:

    Thanks Affineur

    It's really pleasing to see how many people have taken the time to praise the Beosound 2 - it must be a special piece of kit, in spite of some of the more obvious omissions when compared to the plethora of alternatives out there. I guess sometimes the simple things just work the best!

    One thing I did pick up on: am I right in thinking that if you use a card reader you can get a quicker file transfer rate than using the dock? Henry did point out that the file transfer was slow using the dock and the older USB format. Does this get around it, and is it easy to upgrade the firmware?

    I, too, am a fan of the BS2.  A couple years back, it seemed like I was the only BS2 defender on this forum... even Peter eventually turned on it... It warms me to see this swell of support. Smile

    To echo the others:  Sometimes simple is better...  If you don't need/want to carry your entire collection, and you don't need/want to listen to a specific song *right now*, but rather prefer a stream of songs that you've personally selected, it is very nice.  No screen to scratch, break or eat batteries.  Timeless design...

    The card reader support does get around the slow file transfer of the older USB.  It is a little bothersome to hunt through the iTunes directories to find the files to copy onto the SD card, but this is not something I do daily or even weekly. 

    It is easy to upgrade the firmware, but you probably will need to consult the manual to get the secret sequence of button presses that make the BS2 receptive to firmware downloading.  You will need a computer with working BeoPlayer (PC) or iTune plug-in (Apple) to load the firmware.  Also beware that not every version of iTunes has been compatible with the BS2 iTunes plug-in...  I don't use the plug-in anymore (just card reader) so I'm not sure if the current release of each works together or not.  Personally, I'd go the BeoPlayer route (just to load the new firmware) if I had a choice.

    Stan

    P.S.  I happen to also like my BS3 and BeoPort as well (others voted as worst in this thread).  I also think my BeoCom3 is great phone - I'm glad I bought one while it was available.

  • 05-22-2008 3:02 AM In reply to

    • Jumbo
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on 05-21-2007
    • Posts 14
    • Founder

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Hi John,

    I purchased a BS2 a couple of years ago but found Beoplayer impossible.

    It took me 3 months to get 6 albums on a 1G card and i just gave up.

    I purchased an iphone 3 months ago and managed to get 80 albums on over a weekend.

    I use my A8's with my iphone and i personally can't notice any sound difference between BS2 and iphone.

    Having said that, i will still keep my BS2 even though i don't really know why!

    Jumbo

  • 05-22-2008 5:54 AM In reply to

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    j0hnbarker:

    One thing I did pick up on: am I right in thinking that if you use a card reader you can get a quicker file transfer rate than using the dock? Henry did point out that the file transfer was slow using the dock and the older USB format. Does this get around it, and is it easy to upgrade the firmware?

    Hi John,

    Yes the transfer speed of your card reader should be much faster. I have just got used to using the docking station and BeoPlayer so I doubt I'll change that routine, however it might be best for you to use a card reader from the go if you can. Depending upon how new or old your BeoSound 2 is you might not need to upgrade its firmware, but it's an easy job if necessary.

  • 05-22-2008 6:21 AM In reply to

    Re: Beosound 2 - Any Good?

    Henry:
    j0hnbarker:

    One thing I did pick up on: am I right in thinking that if you use a card reader you can get a quicker file transfer rate than using the dock? Henry did point out that the file transfer was slow using the dock and the older USB format. Does this get around it, and is it easy to upgrade the firmware?

    Hi John,

    Yes the transfer speed of your card reader should be much faster. I have just got used to using the docking station and BeoPlayer so I doubt I'll change that routine, however it might be best for you to use a card reader from the go if you can. Depending upon how new or old your BeoSound 2 is you might not need to upgrade its firmware, but it's an easy job if necessary.

    Great - thanks Henry/everyone. I do like the idea of using the docking station, but as I'm used to a quick file transfer rate, I'll probably go with a card reader and keep the docking station for charging/displaying the BS2 if I can.

    It seems there's a real hardcore following for the BS2. Now all I need to do is find a good one so I can join the club!

    John

    President, Beomaster 8000 Appreciation Society

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