Check out our review of the Bower & Wilkins A5 wireless speaker system.
It’s been a busy week for new speaker announcements and Bowers & Wilkins has made things a bit busier by launching its Wireless Music Systems, a duo of Airplay-compatible wireless speakers set to compliment its award-winning Zeppelin Air.
The speakers are dubbed the A5 and A7 and their aim is to marry Bowers & Wilkins’ established audio expertise with emerging tech. The company believes it can deliver wireless capabilities without compromising on sound quality. Given the strong performance of the Zeppelin Air, we’re inclined to believe it, though we’ll reserve our official opinion until we’ve had a chance to audition the speakers for review.
The A5 is the smaller iteration and zeros in on convenience and minimizing visual impact, a design approach which is far cry from the rather bold styling of the Zeppelin speaker. Versatility is this speaker’s strong-suit, but if you believe its manufacturer’s claims, it has the audio chops to punch above it’s weight.
The A7 on the other hand, is billed by Bowers & Wilkins as “the ultimate Wireless Music System.” This model was built more for horsepower and sports a six-inch bass driver and DAC’s capable of up-scaling audio to 24bit/96kHz. The A7 it seems, is pure speaker; it forgoes both docks and control panels in pursuit of streamlined power. If you’re looking to have your hair blown back, this version might be more your speed.
Neither of the new docks appear to support Bluetooth, meaning use is limited exclusively to iOS devices with AirPlay.
With more and more A/V equipment taking advantage of technologies like AirPlay, it seems it won’t be long before wires and physical docks go by the wayside. Both models will be available in October, with the A5 selling for $500 and the A7 going for a whopping $800.