B&W Introduces 700 Series Speaker Range With Studio Grade Sound Enhancements
Bowers & Wilkins introduced Wednesday its all-new 700 speaker series featuring eight-models of floorstanding, stand-mount and center-channel loudspeakers, designed to bring studio-quality performance to the home.
The new B&W 700 Series incorporates many of the same technologies used in the company’s flagship 800 Series Diamond range used in leading recording studios.
The new 700 Series adds a variety of design choices to help fit the décor and preference of the home designer.
The series was developed through a three-year program that updated nearly every element of the model range from cabinet design and finish to key new acoustic and mechanical improvements, the company said.
The new 700 Series is comprised of three floor-standing speakers, three stand-mount speakers plus two dedicated center channels. This design iteration introduces slimmer cabinets with curved front baffle and drive units mounted in external “pods” that “form a direct visual and technical link to the 800 Series Diamond range,” the company said.
This is said to “dramatically reduce the impact of the loudspeaker baffle on sound quality by minimizing the cabinet diffraction effect.”
B&W said the result allows the speakers to “disappear” acoustically, to put the focus on the music instead of the loudspeaker’s cabinet.
The cabinets are more svelte than prior series and available in more color options including a new Mocha finish, described as including a highly grained wood that perfectly complements the detailing of the 700 Series cabinets.
The Mocha option is added to choices of Gloss Black and Satin White finishes that will be available in most regional markets. A fourth Rosenut finish will also be offered exclusively in the Asian and Pacific markets.
To further enhance acoustic performance, B&W offers its iconic Solid Body Tweeter-on-Top technology in four series models including the 702 S3 and 703 S3 floorstanding loudspeakers, the 705 S3 standmount model and the HTM71 S3 center channel loudspeakers.
The Tweeter-on-Top for the first time in a 700 Series range, owners have the option of building a complete 700-Series home theater system featuring Tweeter-on-Top throughout.
The latest implementation of the Tweeter-on-Top design has been re-engineered in the new range. B&W continues to machine the component from a single, solid block of aluminum with the enclosure significantly lengthened to reduce distortion and ensure improved clarity. The new form introduceds improved two-point decoupling to better isolate the assembly from the loudspeaker cabinet for a more free and open soundstage, the company said.
The Tweeter-on-Top diaphragm retains the B&W Carbon Dome tweeter, “with its 47kHz first break-up performance, coupled to improved, vented voice coils with new, upgraded magnets. Even models that feature tweeters mounted in the baffle – 707 S3, 706 S3, 704 S3 and HTM72 S3 – benefit from all these changes, alongside a significantly elongated tube-loading system that, as with the Tweeter-on-Top, works to reduce distortion and ensure a cleaner sound,” according to the announcement.
B&W adds its “Biometric Suspension” technology to all three-way loudspeakers in the new range. This was first introduced last year in the new 800 Series Diamond range.
According to B&W Biometric Suspension replaces the conventional fabric spider found in the suspension of almost all loudspeakers built over recent decades to dramatically reduce unwanted noise from the output of the spider as the midrange cone operates.
To deliver even greater midrange transparency, B&W said this comes alongside all of its other proprietary midrange cone technologies including decoupling for the entire midrange assembly, an aluminum drive unit chassis featuring tuned mass dampers for reduced resonance, FST surround-less suspension and Continuum cone material.
Models with mid/bass drive units – 707 S3, 706 S3, 705 S3 and HTM72 S3 – also have been upgraded with new motor systems and improved chassis that promote cleaner output.
Bass performance is supported with the latest generation of B&W’s Aerofoil Profile bass cone technology comprised of a “composite sandwich” of materials with a carefully formed variable profile intended to present cleaner, lower bass distortion.
For stable and substantial connectivity, B&W has included in this series speaker terminals inspired by the 800 Series Diamond line. These are said to be
The cables feed upgraded crossovers that continue to use Mundorf capacitors as before, enhanced with multiple bypass capacitors and improved heatsinking for cleaner performance.
All models in the range offer larger diameter Flowports for more substantial output and thus more expansive sound. The 702 S3 floorstander model re-orients its port to fire downwards on its integrated plinth, as found in the new 800 Series. B&W believes this yields more powerful sound and easier integration into home placements.
B&W said all of the new floorstanding models also add significantly upgraded spikes to anchor them firmly to the floor.
The 704 S3 and 703 S3 models feature stainless steel M6 spikes included with their integrated plinths: on 702 S3, heavy- duty M10 spikes are provided.
Stand-mount models in the range will benefit from similar mechanical upgrades, thanks to the FS-700 S3 floor-stand, which has been visually upgraded to match the slimmer, curved profile of the new cabinet design, while also offering acoustic improvements from the stiffer M6 spikes.
B&W said the new 700 Series range will be available starting today at the suggested retail prices listed below:
- 702 S3 floorstanding speaker with Tweeter-on-Top — $7,000 pair.
- 703 S3 floorstanding speaker with Tweeter-on-Top — $6,000 pair.
- 704 S3 floorstanding speaker — $4,000 pair.
- 705 S3 standmount speaker with Tweeter-on-Top — $3,400 pair.
- 706 S3 standmount speaker — $2,200 pair.
- 707 S3 bookshelf/standmount speaker — $1,800 pair.
- HTM71 S3 centre-channel speaker with Tweeter-on-Top — $2,500 pair.
- HTM72 S3 centre-channel speaker — $1,500 pair.
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By Greg Tarr
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