"This is an excellent, well-made and incredibly easy-to-use system": Bose S1 Pro+ PA system review

A slick, lightweight and powerful PA System with a hidden weapon

  • £699
  • €679
  • $499
Bose L1 Pro+ review
(Image: © Future/Dan Flitcroft)

MusicRadar Verdict

Beautifully small and elegant with enough power to impress the most cynical audiophiles. The Bose S1 Pro+ is a fantastic solution for solo vocal artists, acoustic duos and mobile Karaoke persons alike. The addition of the wireless transmitters is a game changer. The only shame is they are not included as standard.


  • +

    Truly wireless PA system

  • +

    Surprisingly full, rich sound

  • +

    Unbeatably portable and lightweight

  • +

    Long-lasting battery life


  • -

    Wireless transmitters must be bought separately

  • -

    No soft case included

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Bose S1 Pro+ review: What is it?

Bose L1 Pro+ review

(Image credit: Future/Dan Flitcroft)

The market for all-in-one portable PA systems has been hotting up of late. Bose released the original Bose S1 Pro in 2018 to a positive reception. I was impressed by the tiny footprint and weight, coupled with room-filling sound and versatility. I am pleased to report that the Plus isn’t just a remodelling of the successful predecessor, but an example of a company carefully listening to the feedback of their customers.

Shaving half a kilogram off the original weight may not sound drastic, but when you’re dealing with a PA system that is built to be carried, this is a welcome modification. The unit has been rounded off and feels suitably robust. The EQ and reverb controls are replaced with a single multi-touch knob for each channel. Additionally, they have added a bright OLED display which reorientates itself when the unit is placed in any one of the four listening positions available.

An 11-hour battery life makes this ideal for most busking situations. Three combination XLR/1/4” inputs give ample versatility for up to three-piece groups. The third channel includes Bluetooth connectivity for music and backing tracks, along with streaming and USB audio interface functionality.

The Bose can be positioned as a floor monitor, on its side, tilted, and mounted. A comfortable inset handle on the top makes it a dream to manoeuvre. The exclusion of a soft case or carry bag is disappointing, although bespoke cases can be bought online for a reasonable amount.

Perhaps the most exciting new feature is the inclusion of two spaces which can house wireless transmitters for XLR or ¼” Jack connections such as microphones and guitars. This inclusion elevates this PA system significantly above the competition, offering a truly wireless experience.

Bose S1 Pro+ review: Performance & verdict

Bose L1 Pro+ review

(Image credit: Future/Dan Flitcroft)

I can’t help but be impressed by this tiny powerhouse of a PA system. The sound is rich, punchy and clear, even when driven. This would easily be loud enough for a small pub or event. Having the option of running this off an included in-built battery makes this solution a shoo-in for buskers and street performers. Weighing a paltry 6.5kg means this can be easily transported on a bus, train or back seat of a car. 

Bose has clearly given this latest inception of the range some deep thought. Small additions, such as bright and self-orientating OLED displays, are welcome for low-light situations. Connecting to the system via the proprietary Bose Music App couldn’t be simpler. In many ways, this system shines as a very well-made and powerful portable Bluetooth speaker. The deceptively large sound would impress at a garden party. Particularly useful for when mains power cannot be easily sourced.

Vocals sound clear and punchy, with a comprehensive range of EQ settings and vocal presets to be found within the app. Instruments such as acoustic guitars sound equally vibrant, with no obvious compression or distortion on any of the channels when driven at a respectable volume. I did notice some slight feedback when positioned too close to the speaker, but nothing that would worry me in a live performance situation.

Bose L1 Pro+ review

(Image credit: Bose)
Also consider

Yamaha Stagepas

(Image credit: Yamaha)

Yamaha Stagepas: Two speakers, an abundance of channels, and increased power make this system suitable for most occasions. However, the lack of an in-built battery severely limits its scope.
LD Systems Roadbuddy: Battery-powered plus wireless microphones make this a contender. However, being restricted to using the included microphones may put some buyers off. It does not compete with the Bose for sound quality.
Electro-Voice Everse 8: Powerful and compact design. Sound quality is more suitable for music rather than microphones or instruments. 

The jewel in the crown for the Bose S1 Pro+ has to be the inclusion of two wireless transmitters which fit snugly into the rear of the unit. Available separately, the Bose 2.4 GHz transmitters offer a range of 30 feet, making this a truly exceptional wireless system. The fly in the ointment for me though, is that these are not included as standard. Of all the improvements made to the first iteration of the S1 Pro, it is only the wireless connectivity that would push me to upgrade to this new system. I cannot praise Bose enough for the foresight and ingenuity to include this option which increases the versatility of the PA system dramatically. But to not have this option as standard feels like a misstep. 

With the wireless transmitters costing around £165/$149 each, if you want this fully equipped functionality, you will be looking at over £/$1,000. This is not an insignificant amount of money for what is still a rather humble PA system.

Those minor gripes aside, this is an excellent, well-made, and incredibly easy-to-use system. It’s not often that a manufacturer makes such bold changes between models. Put aside the clear and obvious uses for singers, duos and small acts for a moment. Bose may have just created the smallest and most convenient mobile Karaoke system to date. Wedding venues would also be well advised to consider the Bose as a discreet and incredibly useful device for many scenarios. 

Bose S1 Pro+ review: Hands-on demos

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Bose S1 Pro+ review: Specifications

  • Built-in Mixer: 3-channel, digital
  • Effects: Reverb, EQ
  • Power Consumption: 108 W
  • Power Source: Rechargeable Battery or Mains
  • Battery Life: 11 hours
  • Frequency Response: 62 Hz - 17 kHz (± 3 dB)
  • Sound Output Level: 109 dB SPL peak
  • Speaker/Drivers: 3 x 2¼" HR drivers, 1 x 6" Woofer
  • Material: Aluminium and Polypropylene
  • Bluetooth Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.0, 100 ft range
  • Wireless Control: Via Bose Music app
  • Inputs: 2 x Combo jacks, 1 x TRS 1/4" Aux input, 1 x 1/8" Aux input, 1 x XLR Line Output
  • Dimensions (W x H x D): 238 x 279 x 332 mm
  • Weight: 17.7 lbs (6.5 kg)
  • Contact: Bose
Daniel Flitcroft

I’m a freelance contributor at MusicRadar, and I have a passion for great music gear and writing. I am also a professional touring and recording artist and have 25 years of experience working within the music industry. I own and run a professional recording studio in Bath as well as an independent record label. As a working musician, I am always on the lookout for tech that will benefit the live and studio environment.