Bowers & Wilkins has introduced a new “better sounding” and “better looking” version of its iconic Zeppelin speaker for the streaming age. The airship-shaped speaker is available now in either the darker-toned midnight grey or lighter pearl grey color schemes, each for $799.

B&W calls the new Zeppelin “a complete stereo system in one component” as it includes dedicated left and right speaker assemblies around a central, large subwoofer, all powered by a claimed 240W of amplification. The components are mounted in a rigid enclosure with minimal material around driver edges to improve audio dispersion. Furthermore, 90mm midrange cones use B&W proprietary fixed suspension transducer (FSTTM) tech found in the company’s premium floor-standers, such as the 800 Series Diamond. A 150mm subwoofer is centrally located and designed to avoid unwanted “rocking” of the cabinet for cleaner bass delivery.

The Zeppelin supports AirPlay 2, aptX Adaptive Bluetooth, Spotify Connect and B&W’s proprietary Music App which allows access to Deezer, Last.fm, Qobuz, Soundcloud, TIDAL and TuneIn. The company says more services are being added regularly.

Voice control is care of Alexa built-in with no need for external components, so song commands can be directed to the unit. Alternatively, the Zeppelin can be operated by physical buttons on the top of the enclosure. The speaker manufacturer ensures us that the speaker is “built to last” and an onboard digital “brain” can be upgraded over time, with multi-room capability slated for early 2022. A multi-room system based on B&W’s Formation range wireless speakers can also be assembled.

 

 

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Martin Dew

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