Bose cinemate 520 home theater system review

Nothing immerses you more into a movie on your TV screen like a room-filling surround sound! This is exactly what you get from a high-quality home theater system.

There are hundreds of home theater brands in the market, but I must say the Bose CineMate 520 leaves a good impression, especially for people looking to enhance the audio quality in their homes. 

According to fans, the sound system is designed to complement your movie and TV watching experience, but hearsay aside, let us put the Bose CineMate 520 in the spotlight with a comprehensive review of this product. 

 Bose CineMate 520 Home Theater System
our score
  • Stylish design with a jet-black finish
  • Compact build with a small footprint
  • Multiple connectivity options
  • Universal remote control
  • Unlimited music streaming

Last Updated: October 2023

Bose CineMate 520 home Theater System at a Glance: 

Specs and Features

  • Dimensions of the product: 16 x 20.19 x 21.5 inches
  • Weight of the product: 41.5 pounds
  • Stereo setup: 5.1
  • Wattage consumption: 50 Watts
  • Power Requirements- Acoustimass Module: 100 - 240 VAC, 50 / 60 Hz, 150 W
  • Power Requirements-Console: 100 - 240 VAC, 50 / 60 Hz, 60 W
  • Connectivity: HDMI, Bose Link, Stereo RCA, Digital Optical, Digital Coaxial
  • Warranty: 1-year for repairs or replacements

Bose CineMate 520 Review

The Bose CineMate 520 home theater system comes with several features that make it a worthy buy. 

It offers a packed performance, highlighted by a room-filling surround sound, a universal remote control, as well as the ability to connect via Bluetooth and WiFi for seamless connectivity.

But you need to hear it to believe it! We take an in-depth look into what you can expect from the CineMate 520. 

Bose CineMate 520 Design and Build Quality

The CineMate 520 home theater system comprises a 5.1 stereo setup that includes five small speakers and an Acoustimass module to deliver a sound that fills the room. The smaller speakers feature four slim-profile Direct Series II speakers to go with a single wider center speaker. 

Each of the slim speakers measures 7.5 x 3.3 x 3.3" and weighs 2.28lbs whereas the center speaker measures 3.4 x 7.3 x 3.3" and tips the scale at 2.2 lbs. All these speakers are fitted with two transducers that are set at customized angles for a surround-sound experience. 

Overall, the CineMate 520 boasts a stylish design, highlighted by a subtle black color. The slim profile of the speakers allows them to be wall hung allowing for easy installation. The subwoofer is decently sized, which enables you to set it up almost anywhere in the living room with little hassle. 

Meanwhile, the control console is slim enough to sit right under your TV set. It features a brilliant shine that helps to add to the overall décor of the space. Included is a universal remote control that is designed to be grippy and ergonomic in your palm. 

All the elements in the CineMate 520 theater system have a sleek jet-black finish, which blends easily with your room’s color scheme. The matte effect on the exterior, as well as the narrow strip of shine, makes them attractive.

 Bose CineMate 520 Home Theater System

The five smaller speakers are wired, so if you want to mount them on the wall or a stand, you will have to purchase the mounts separately. Unfortunately, this is a cost you’ll have to bear in addition to the already costly system. 

Despite the relatively small design of the 520, it still manages to deliver a great sound that will be suitable for movies and gaming. The Cinemate 520 wireless adapter proves to be a key selling point for this system. 

The wireless adapter lets you stream tunes from your music playlist or library via Pandora, Spotify, Deezer, iHeartRadio, and similar internet platforms. The adapter is also powered by Bluetooth or WiFi and you get to control your listening experience using the included universal remote from Bose. 

The Bose CineMate 520 home theater system comes with an ADAPTIQ audio calibration system. When you are done setting up your speakers, you can use the ADAPTIQ headset to personalize the response of the system to your room. 

This enables the 520 to adapt to and accommodate different sizes of rooms, as well as the acoustic attributes of the room with all its contents. When it comes to connectivity, you will find all the inputs and outputs on the control console. 

This features four HDMI inputs that link the system to other devices in your home theater set up. Other inputs included are a digital coaxial audio input, an analog R-L audio input, and a digital optical audio input. 

Furthermore, there is a single HDMI output for the television. Generally, you won’t have a hard time setting up and firing up the system; the user manual included is not only comprehensive but also easy to understand.

This is just one of the benefits of investing in the Bose CineMate 520 home theater system!

Bose CineMate 520 Performance and Sound Quality

Bose is known to produce audio equipment with great sound quality, and the CineMate 520 is no exception. The five speakers of the system create a wonderful musical experience that fills up the entire room.

The volume at a high range has negligible distortion levels. No matter how high you turn up the volume, the music plays clearly with impressive quality. Your listening experience will easily reach a next level with the 520.

The highs and mids sound great while the bass is solid. Thanks to the wireless Acoustimass module, the overall quality of the audio is greatly enhanced for the ideal home theater experience. This produces an impactful bass for the needed surround sound in the room.

It makes for the ultimate party experience and will come in handy when you have friends or family coming over. While the subwoofer may not deliver a roof-shattering bass response, the sound is strong enough to impress most users. 

This is especially true if you choose to install the system in a small to medium-sized room. Another great thing about this speaker system is that the Acoustimass module connects wirelessly to make for convenient placement. 

You can position it anywhere you want in the room. Nonetheless, you will still have to plug in the power cable for it to work. 

The ADAPTIQ autocalibration system incorporated into the CineMate 520 makes for high-quality performance in the home theater room you choose to install the unit. 

 Bose CineMate 520 Home Theater System

The technology serves to automatically optimize the sound system’s settings in line with the unique shape, size, and furniture inside your space to deliver consistently impressive sound throughout all the corners of the room. 

Each speaker is built to have a small footprint yet deliver big sound for your listening pleasure. The Direct Series II speakers can be mounted on the wall as the Acoustimass module tucks away behind the couch. 

You can still place it at the end of the table and the impact will still be compelling. Just remember to set the subwoofer on level ground and make sure that it is sturdy enough to keep the unit from vibrating and moving when the music is booming. 

Bose CineMate 520 Review: Weighing The Pros & Cons 


  • Stylish design with a jet-black finish
  • Compact build with a small footprint
  • ADAPTIQ autocalibration system
  • Wireless design and easy to install
  • Multiple connectivity options
  • High-quality 5.1 surround sound effect
  • No harmonic distortion at high volumes
  • Supports Dolby Digital sound
  • Universal remote control
  • Unlimited music streaming


  • Requires you to buy mounts separately
  • Slightly expensive
  • Takes time to connect wirelessly

 Bose CineMate 520 Home Theater System
our score
  • Stylish design with a jet-black finish
  • Compact build with a small footprint
  • Multiple connectivity options
  • Universal remote control
  • Unlimited music streaming


Overall, the Bose CineMate 520 is a good option for a home theater system! It has the design to enhance the look of your interior décor and the performance to keep the party going into the night. 

The system features a straightforward setup process that will have you enjoying the great sound quality in no time. If you like to watch movies or listen to music, this is the unit to make you feel right at home. 

Furthermore, included is a 1-year warranty when you buy the system that compels the manufacturer to repair or replace any defects free of charge. The only issue is that the CineMate 520 comes with a slightly hefty price tag. 

If you can find your way past the price, this is a nice unit to have in your home!

Barry Allen

About the author:

Barry Allen

I grew up to be a self-proclaimed stuck-up audiophile, and I – partially – blame Pinnacle Speakers for it.

The whole point of me starting this website was to keep the tradition going. Although the means have changed, the mission remains the same: Bringing „sterling sound“ as they once put it into home theaters and sound systems worldwide! 

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