...Oh, and he has NOT seen my basement.
Well... that's your problem right there.
I went to a birthday a few months back and made a new acquaintance; the gentleman is a musician, vocals as well as guitar. At some point during the dinner we started talking about audio gear at which point my new friend said: "There is Bose and then there is everything else." I too bit my tongue; but I invited him to my wife's birthday.
Fast forward a few weeks; I got the guy in my basement and we listened to some music (his choices). I gave him the remote and encourage him to raise the volume at whatever level he likes.
Long story short, it's been more than 6 months and never heard that phrase: "There is Bose and there is everything else."
As I suspected, he never actually had a chance to listen to a decent system before; his claims where simply based on his system which compared to a $200 HTIB was
a lot better.
Lesson learned for him and for me as well: don't make claims about audio unless you heard the gear first hand.