How to Install a Bose 901 Equalizer

By Andrew Tennyson

You’ve purchased a Bose 901 equalizer by itself or as a part of a Bose 901 speaker system, and now it’s time to set it up. How you go about connecting the Bose 901-series equalizer to your stereo system varies slightly depending on whether you intend to use it in a two-speaker or surround sound setup. If you're using earlier 901 speakers, check for possible compatibility issues with the 901-series equalizer you're using before you begin.

Things You'll Need

  • Stereo receiver or amplifier, speakers, Bose 901 equalizer

Step 1

Turn off the power to your stereo system and unplug any cables or devices currently connected to the Tape Monitor inputs on your receiver. These devices might include tape decks and other equalization or signal processing devices.

Step 2

Connect one end of the first set of twin cables that came with the equalizer to the “Amplifier Input” jacks on the Bose 901 equalizer, connecting the red side to the “R” input and the other to the “L” input. All jacks are located on the back of the Bose 901 equalizer.

Step 3

Connect the other end of the first set of cables to the “Out” or “Record” jacks on your receiver, again connecting right to right and left to left. If you’re using the equalizer in a home theater setup, connect this end of the cable to the “Pre Amp Out” jacks on your receiver or amplifier.

Step 4

Connect one end of the second set of cables to the “Amplifier Output” jacks on the Bose 901 equalizer.

Step 5

Connect the other end of the second set of cables to the “In” or “Tape” jacks on your receiver. These jacks may also be labelled “To Output,” “Play,” “Monitor” or “From Output” depending on the make and model of your receiver. If you’re using the equalizer in a home theater setup, connect this end of the cable to the “Main Amp In” jacks on your receiver or amplifier.

Step 6

Connect the Bose 901 equalizer’s power cord to one of the switched power outlets on your receiver or amplifier. Connecting to a switched outlet ensures the equalizer is turned on or off automatically whenever the receiver or amplifier is turned on or off.

Step 7

Set the “Monitor” button on the equalizer to the “Tape” position.

Tips & Warnings

  • Once the equalizer is set up, test it to make sure it is working properly. Play some audio through the system and press the “Tape” or “Tape Monitor” button on your receiver. All sound should stop when this button is pressed. When it does, switch the “Monitor” button on the equalizer to the “Source” position. The audio should start playing again. If it doesn't, check your connections and try again.
  • How the jacks on your receiver or amplifier are labeled will vary depending on the make and model of the device. Consult the documentation that came with the receiver or amplifier for more information about which jacks to use when connecting an equalizer.
  • Using the surround sound method ensures the equalizer only controls the Bose 901 speakers in your surround sound system.
  • Bose 901 Series VI equalizers can only be used with 901 Series V and VI speakers. The 901 Series VI active equalizer must not be used with 901 Series I, II, III or IV speakers.