England-based audio model Bowers & Wilkins is providing audiophiles one other trip on its Zeppelin, however this time, there’s a brand new pal on board. The Zeppelin speaker that was introduced on Wednesday marks the primary new addition to the sequence since 2015. It is flying into the brand new age by integrating Amazon Alexa and a few newer applied sciences for decreasing wi-fi latency.
Bowers & Wilkins’ Formation sequence of wi-fi audio system obtained Alexa in 2020, however that is the primary time the good assistant will get a ticket for the Zeppelin. For individuals who would like to not communicate to Alexa, the speaker has bodily buttons, too.
The newest Zeppelin continues the sequence’ flight towards going utterly wi-fi. Bowers & Wilkins’ authentic Zeppelin in 2007 was an iPod dock, whereas the 2011 Zeppelin Air nonetheless had a dock however added Apple Airplay. In 2015, the Zeppelin Wi-fi dropped the dock however supplied a 3.5 mm connection. Immediately’s Zeppelin has no wired choice, apart from a USB-C port that is for service solely.
Bowers & Wilkins is counting on a few of the newest wi-fi tech to assist guarantee this determination does not lead to lag-laden jam periods. iOS customers can join through AirPlay 2, which additionally gives multi-room assist. For individuals who do not use iOS, there’s the aptX Adaptive Bluetooth codec. Unsurprisingly, the aptX Lossless extension for aptX Adaptive is not current, as Qualcomm solely introduced it in September.
The model says the brand new Zeppelin is all concerning the “streaming age.” Just like the prior Zeppelin, the brand new rectangular speaker helps Spotify Join. Downloading the Bowers & Wilkins app allows you to management the speaker and use different music-streaming companies, together with the hi-res-focused Tidal and Qobuz.
Bowers & Wilkins additionally plans so as to add multi-room assist for non-iOS customers in “early 2022″ and prompt that it’s going to proceed to replace the speaker’s software program over time.
Bowers & Wilkins has outfitted the speaker with a pair of 1-inch double-dome tweeters, two 3.5-inch midrange drivers, and a 6-inch subwoofer for low frequencies. The speaker helps a frequency response of 35–24,000 Hz. In accordance with the corporate’s announcement, the drivers are “organized in devoted left and proper speaker assemblies round a central, giant subwoofer” and are pushed by 240 W to be able to fill a room.
Bowers & Wilkins thinks that is sufficient to justify a worth enhance to $800—$100 greater than the prior Zeppelin, the Zeppelin Wi-fi. In fact, there are many Bluetooth audio system for less expensive that additionally supply Alexa, Airplay 2, and the like. Bowers & Wilkins must show its price with sound high quality (particularly round hi-res) and performance.