New B&W Zeppelin Smart Speaker Arrives With High-Resolution Sound
Renowned U.K.-speaker manufacture Bowers & Wilkins is now selling its newest Zeppelin smart speaker offering more detailed high-resolution sound with expanded smart capabilities.
The new B&W Zeppelin is available now at a $799.99 suggested retail price, supporting a wide range of popular streaming services using the Bowers & Wilkins Music App. Furthermore, the speaker will be firmware upgradeable to support new capabilities like multiroom audio, going forward.
First introduced in 2007 as the ultimate iPod dock, the Zeppelin is returning in 2021 with a better-sounding, better-looking speaker “that is smarter than ever,” the company said.
The Zeppelin smart speaker offers stereo channel driver separation inside a single component, using Bowers & Wilkins’ reference quality acoustic technologies arranged in dedicated left and right speaker assemblies around a central, large subwoofer. This is driven by 240-Watts of amplification, sufficient to fill a room in a way that “no single-box rival can match,” noted the acclaimed developer of Nautilus studio monitors used in the legendary Abbey Road.
The new Zeppelin combines the speaker driver units with a new high-resolution streaming platform designed to present high quality musical performance whether from a wirelessly connected source or via a streaming service.
The form factor offers new variations on the distinctive Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin design, with a shape defined by the advanced acoustics it was built to emit.
B&W is offering the speaker in two finishes, one dark (midnight grey) and one light (pearl grey – pictured at top), while the new design now includes switchable, dimmable ambient lighting that creates a “halo” effect around a metal pedestal stand.
Streaming from a mobile device, tablet or computer is supported with the new Zeppelin through the inclusion of both Apple’s AirPlay 2 and aptX Adaptive Bluetooth — enabling wireless connectivity through both iOS and Android devices, respectively.
Streaming services are supported via the B&W Music App which affords access to Deezer, Last.fm, Qobuz, Soundcloud, TIDAL and TuneIn. The popular Spotify service is enabled via Spotify Connect, that is said to ensure both high-quality sound and convenient, easy operation.
Users can access favorite services and selections and perform other functions via built-in Alexa voice control. Users need only ask Alexa for a song to hear it played on the high-end Zeppelin drivers. Those who favor more tactile control will find the Zeppelin also has physical buttons on the top rear of the enclosure.
Constructed for many years of use, the new B&W Zeppelin can be upgraded with new features and capabilities into the future. For example, the company said multiroom capability is planned to be introduced in early 2022. This is expected to enable connectivity with Zeppelins in multiple rooms around a house or office, for a multiroom system based on Bowers & Wilkins’ Formation range of high-resolution wireless speakers.
“We are so proud to be able to introduce the all-new Zeppelin,” stated Giles Pocock, Vice-President of Brand Marketing, Bowers & Wilkins. “It’s the best-sounding, best-looking and smartest Zeppelin we’ve ever created. It really does mean that you can have the audio performance our fans have come to expect from Bowers & Wilkins, plus all the intuitive features and ease of use they demand, in one beautifully designed package.”
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By Greg Tarr
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