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3·2·1® home entertainment system

Sold from 1970 – 2006

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Disc compatibility charts

Find out which types of audio and video discs can be played by this system.

Audio Disc Compatibility

CD CD-R CD-RW MP3 CD MP3 DVD WMA CD AAC CD Super Audio CD DVD-Audio DualDisc (CD side)
Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No

Playback homemade burned media can vary.

Homemade media formats (i.e. DVD+R/-R, DVD+RW/-RW, Dual Layer DVD+R/-R, SVCD) may or may not play in your system. Playability can vary with different factors (i.e. disc brand, burning software, disc burner, etc.). If a disc doesn't play, try another disc. For disc that do play, determining the brand of disc and how they were burned could help to determine other media that will play successfully.

Playability of DVD-Audio discs

Some DVD-Audio discs contain Dolby Digital tracks that all DVD players (including Bose DVD-based systems) can play. Bose DVD-based systems only play the Dolby Digital audio track. Some DVD-Audio discs have the Dolby Digital tracks on the opposite side of the disc; others have the option in the disc setup menu.

Note: A specifically dedicated DVD-Audio player must be used to play the DVD-Audio format. An external DVD-Audio player may be connected to a Bose system, but only its stereo output can be used. Bose systems do not have multi-channel input jacks to accept the multi-channel output from a DVD-Audio player.

Playability of Super Audio CDs

The system plays only standard CD audio tracks on a hybrid SACD disc. Hybrid discs contain both the SACD and standard CD formats.

If the SACD disc is not a hybrid, you need a dedicated SACD player. Connect this player to the Bose system using the stereo inputs or AUX IN. Since the Bose system does not have multi-channel input jacks, the sound from the SACD player will be delivered in stereo.

Playability of DualDisc CD/DVDs

The CD side of a DualDisc does not conform to the Phillips and Sony Red Book audio CD standards. DualDiscs are not allowed to display the CD logo. The CD side of the DualDisc may not play consistently or at all due to the fact that the CD layer is thinner than the standard. Most DualDiscs contain one of two warnings:
  • "This disc is intended to play on standard DVD and CD players. It may not play on certain car, slot-load players and mega-disc changers"
  • "The audio side of this disc does not conform to CD specifications and therefore not all DVD and CD players will play the audio side of this disc"
The DVD side of a DualDisc conforms to DVD Forum specifications. DualDiscs are allowed to display the DVD logo.

The 1.5 mm-thick DualDisc is .3mm thicker than a conventional CD, which may not load or eject properly in a slot-loading CD player.

Video Disc Compatibility

DVD DVD-R DVD-RW DVD-R Dual Layer DVD+R DVD+RW DVD+R Dual Layer DVD-RAM
Yes No No No No No No No
 
Video CD Super Video CD Photo CD Photo DVD DualDisc (DVD side) Blu-ray HD-DVD
Yes* No No No Yes No No

*Video CDs are compatible with systems running software version 010301 and later.

Playability of MiniDVD discs

A MiniDVD is a disc that is 80-mm in diameter. The format is also known as a video-single, or DVD single, similar to the CD single (miniCD). This single music video format may also be called a "3-inch DVD," its approximate diameter in inches

Single Sided Dual Layer DVD+R and DVD-R versions of this media are available. To determine MiniDVD compatibility with the system, check to see if the MiniDVD is a DVD+R or a DVD-R, and reference its larger 120-mm counterpart in the above charts.

MP3 compatibility requirements

Bose systems do not play MP3s recorded at rates lower than 64kbps. Audio quality is very low below that point. Bose systems may have problems reading MP3s recorded at a variable bit rate. The track may play, but if the bit rate falls below 64kbps the decoder does not have enough digital information to play audio.

MP3s created with a volume-leveling feature are not compatible with Bose systems. (Current versions of MusicMatch, a CD-ripping software program, have a volume-leveling feature, which, when enabled, creates a consistent volume level for all tracks.)

MP3 filenames should contain only one period (.). The system looks for the .MP3 extension to identify the file type. For example, the system would be unable to interpret a filename with two periods such as "HILL ST. BLUES.MP3" because it would be seen as a ". BLUES" file.

Information, such as graphics and song lyrics, may not be recognized by your system. (The latest CD-ripping programs can help you differentiate ID3 Version 1 and 2 tags and may also allow you to convert Version 2 to Version 1.)

Do not use software such as Direct CD which uses Microsoft Internet Explorer to drag and drop files from a hard drive to a CD. This CD burning method generates CDs that are incompatible with your system. Use a software program that displays an actual user interface.

MP3 tips

  1. Rip CDs between 128 and 256kbps, with a 44.1khz sampling rate. iTunes is recommended
  2. Burn (and finalize) the CD in one session only. A multi-session disc may play, but it is not always compatible, and may result in intermittent audio

A Blu-ray disc player must be used to play a Blu-ray disc.

You can use the audio output from a Blu-ray disc player and connect it to the Bose system or you can use the audio output from the connected TV

Playability of HD-DVD discs

An HD-DVD disc player must be used to play an HD-DVD disc. The audio output of an HD-DVD player can connect to the Bose system, or to a TV whose audio output is connected to the Bose system.

Recording video to DVD-R or DVD+R discs:

Your system cannot read files burned directly to a disc. Instead, create a DVD video disc from the files using disc creation software. (Tip: You can check if a disc was created as a DVD by inserting it into a computer DVD drive and viewing the contents of the disc: Discs that contain VIDEO_TS and AUDIO_TS files are DVDs; discs that contain other files—like .avi or .mpeg—are not.)

Recommended MP3 formats

Bose systems are compatible with single and multi-session discs, including single-session mixed-mode discs. CDs must be finalized to play on Lifestyle and 321 systems. Wave music systems and TriPort CD systems will play CDs if they are not finalized, though they must be burned at a speed of 8x or less; Higher burning speeds may make the disc unplayable depending on the disc manufacturer. These formats are recommended:
  1. Linked and unlinked sessions
  2. International (non-English) TTAG and ID3 Tag (version 1.2, 2.2, 2.3) information
  3. Compatible with UDF formats:
    1. Fixed or Variable packet
    2. Version 1.5 or 2
    3. UDF with ISO bridge
    4. Easy CD Format (that uses a different method)
  4. Mode 1 and Mode 2 (Form 1 and Form 2)
  5. Disc format ISO9660 Level 1 (not Level 2) with or without extended Joliet
  6. Macintosh burned disc via ISO image
  7. MPEG 2.5 Layer 3
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