Unveiling the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series: A Sonic Marvel in Hi-Fi Heaven
Unveiling the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series: A Sonic Marvel in Hi-Fi Heaven

Unveiling the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series: A Sonic Marvel in Hi-Fi Heaven


Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series

When it comes to high-end audio equipment, Bowers & Wilkins has consistently been a name synonymous with excellence. In the realm of speakers, they have consistently raised the bar, and their latest offering, the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series, is no exception. In this review, we will delve into the intricacies of this audio marvel, explore its specifications, and provide alternatives for those looking to experience audio nirvana.

A Legacy of Excellence

The Bowers & Wilkins Journey

Bowers & Wilkins, a British audio company with over five decades of experience, has garnered a reputation for crafting speakers that redefine the boundaries of audio quality. The 800 Series is the latest installment in a legacy of excellence, and it promises to deliver an unparalleled auditory experience.

Unboxing the 800 Series

Exquisite Craftsmanship

Upon unboxing the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series, one is immediately struck by the meticulous craftsmanship. Each speaker is a work of art, featuring luxurious materials and impeccable attention to detail. Whether you choose the 802 D4, 803 D4, or 804 D4, you can expect a stunning visual centerpiece for your audio setup.

Specifications that Impress

The Heart of the Matter

Let’s dive into the specifications of the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series and understand what makes these speakers so special:

801 D4

  • Type: 3-way vented-box system
  • Drive Units: 1x ø25mm (1 in) Diamond Dome high-frequency, 1x ø150mm (6 in) Continuum cone FST midrange, 2x ø200mm (8 in) Aerofoil cone bass units
  • Frequency Response: 18Hz to 35kHz
  • Sensitivity: 90dB spl (2.83Vrms, 1m)
  • Dimensions: 1162mm x 334mm x 465mm
  • Weight: 50.3kg

802 D4

  • Type: 3-way vented-box system
  • Drive Units: 1x ø25mm (1 in) Diamond Dome high-frequency, 1x ø150mm (6 in) Continuum cone FST midrange, 2x ø200mm (8 in) Aerofoil cone bass units
  • Frequency Response: 17Hz to 28kHz
  • Sensitivity: 90dB spl (2.83Vrms, 1m)
  • Dimensions: 1162mm x 334mm x 465mm
  • Weight: 50.3kg

803 D4

  • Type: 3-way vented-box system
  • Drive Units: 1x ø25mm (1 in) Diamond Dome high-frequency, 1x ø130mm (5 in) Continuum cone FST midrange, 2x ø165mm (6.5 in) Aerofoil cone bass units
  • Frequency Response: 19Hz to 35kHz
  • Sensitivity: 89dB spl (2.83Vrms, 1m)
  • Dimensions: 1040mm x 334mm x 407mm
  • Weight: 41.1kg

804 D4

  • Type: 3-way vented-box system
  • Drive Units: 1x ø25mm (1 in) Diamond Dome high-frequency, 1x ø100mm (4 in) Continuum cone FST midrange, 2x ø130mm (5 in) Aerofoil cone bass units
  • Frequency Response: 24Hz to 35kHz
  • Sensitivity: 88dB spl (2.83Vrms, 1m)
  • Dimensions: 942mm x 334mm x 400mm
  • Weight: 35.4kg

805 D4

  • Type: 2-way vented-box system
  • Drive Units: 1x ø25mm (1 in) Diamond Dome high-frequency, 1x ø165mm (6.5 in) Continuum cone midrange/woofer
  • Frequency Response: 27Hz to 35kHz
  • Sensitivity: 88dB spl (2.83Vrms, 1m)
  • Dimensions: 407mm x 238mm x 337mm
  • Weight: 14.5kg

These specifications alone tell a compelling story. With diamond dome high-frequency tweeters, Continuum cone midrange drivers, and Aerofoil cone bass units, the 800 Series is engineered for sonic perfection.

A Symphony of Sound

Immersive Audio Experience

The true magic of the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series lies in its ability to reproduce sound with unmatched precision and clarity. Whether you’re listening to the delicate pluck of a guitar string or the thunderous roar of a symphony orchestra, these speakers capture every nuance and deliver it with breathtaking accuracy.

Specifications That Dazzle

Before we dive into the auditory journey, let’s take a closer look at the specifications that make the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series a marvel of engineering:

1. Diamond Dome Tweeters: These speakers feature the iconic diamond dome tweeters, meticulously crafted from synthetic diamond to ensure exceptional rigidity and reduced distortion.

2. Aerofoil Bass Drivers: The Aerofoil bass drivers are designed with advanced materials and engineering techniques, resulting in greater accuracy and control over low frequencies.

3. Continuum Cone Midrange: B&W’s patented Continuum cone technology enhances midrange performance, ensuring clear and natural vocals.

4. Solid Body Tweeter Housing: The solid body tweeter housing minimizes resonance, preserving the purity of high-frequency sound.

5. Matrix Bracing: Innovative Matrix bracing within the cabinet reduces unwanted vibrations, providing a rock-solid foundation for the sound.

6. Decoupled Double Dome Tweeter: Isolated from the cabinet, this tweeter ensures precise and detailed high-frequency reproduction.

7. Optimized Crossover: Carefully designed crossovers guarantee seamless integration between different driver units.

8. Cabinet Design: The elegant cabinet design not only enhances aesthetics but also reduces unwanted vibrations and standing waves.

9. Finish Options: Choose from a range of exquisite finishes, including Satin Walnut, Gloss Black, and White. Each finish is a testament to B&W’s commitment to craftsmanship.

The Sonic Odyssey: How It Sounds

Now that we’ve explored the technical wizardry behind the 800 Series, let’s discuss how these speakers perform in the real world.

1. Crystal-Clear Highs

The diamond dome tweeters in the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series are nothing short of spectacular. They effortlessly reproduce the highest frequencies with a level of clarity and precision that leaves audiophiles in awe. Whether you’re listening to delicate piano notes or the ethereal shimmer of cymbals, the highs are impeccable.

2. Midrange Magic

The Continuum cone midrange drivers take center stage in delivering lifelike vocals and instrumentals. With these speakers, the midrange is where the magic happens. It’s as if the performers are right there in the room with you, their every nuance and emotion laid bare.

3. Powerful Bass Punch

The Aerofoil bass drivers deliver a powerful yet controlled bass response. Whether you’re enjoying a cinematic explosion or the deep rumble of a bass guitar, the 800 Series ensures that low frequencies are not just heard but felt.

4. Impeccable Imaging and Soundstage

One of the standout features of these speakers is their ability to create an expansive soundstage. Close your eyes, and you’ll be transported into the heart of the music. Instruments and vocals are precisely placed, allowing you to pinpoint every sound source.

5. Stunning Dynamics

The B&W 800 Series has a remarkable ability to handle dynamic shifts in music effortlessly. From the quietest whisper to the thunderous crescendo, these speakers maintain their composure, ensuring a thrilling listening experience.

6. Meticulously Balanced Sound

What truly sets the 800 Series apart is the seamless integration of its drivers. Thanks to the optimized crossover design, the transition between the tweeters, midrange, and bass drivers is imperceptible. This results in a cohesive, harmonious sound that is simply breathtaking.

The Pinnacle of Audio Fidelity

Imaging and Soundstage

One of the standout qualities of the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series is its ability to create an expansive and precise soundstage. Close your eyes, and you’ll feel like you’re sitting in the front row of a live concert. The speakers disappear, leaving only the music to envelop you.

Room Adaptation Technology

To further enhance the listening experience, the 800 Series features advanced room adaptation technology. This ensures that the speakers perform optimally in various room environments, whether you have a dedicated listening room or a more casual setup in your living space.

Alternatives in the High-End Speaker Arena

Expanding Your Options

While the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series is undoubtedly a sonic marvel, it’s essential to explore alternative options, especially if you have specific preferences or constraints. Here are a few alternatives worth considering:

1. Sonus Faber Aida

  • Type: 3.5-way, vented-box system
  • Drive Units: 1.1″ Beryllium Dome Tweeter, 7″ M15 XTR-04 Midrange, 3 x 9″ W22 XTR-08 Woofer
  • Frequency Response: 28 Hz – 35 kHz
  • Sensitivity: 92 dB SPL (2.83 V/1m)
  • Dimensions: 52.4″ x 61″ x 24.6″
  • Weight: 482 lbs

The Sonus Faber Aida is a masterpiece in its own right, featuring exquisite Italian craftsmanship and a unique design. Its warm, natural sound signature is perfect for audiophiles who prioritize a more organic sonic experience.

2. Wilson Audio Alexx V

  • Type: 4-way, ported system
  • Drive Units: 1″ Titanium Dome Tweeter, 7″ Midrange, 8″ Woofer, 12.5″ Woofers (x2)
  • Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 32 kHz
  • Sensitivity: 91 dB SPL (2.83 Vrms, 1m)
  • Dimensions: 70.25″ x 18.5″ x 29″
  • Weight: 535 lbs

The Wilson Audio Alexx V boasts exceptional build quality and a precise, detailed soundstage. It’s a speaker for those who demand nothing but the absolute best.

3. Focal Utopia Scala Evo

  • Type: 3-way, bass-reflex floorstanding loudspeaker
  • Drive Units: 1.1″ Beryllium Tweeter, 6.5″ W Composite Midrange, 3 x 8″ W Cone Woofers
  • Frequency Response: 29 Hz – 40 kHz
  • Sensitivity: 91 dB SPL (2.83 V/1m)
  • Dimensions: 55.75″ x 16.3″ x 27.9″
  • Weight: 198 lbs

Focal’s Utopia Scala Evo combines French elegance with exceptional sound. It’s an excellent choice for audiophiles who value both aesthetics and audio quality.

Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series

The Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series is a testament to the company’s unwavering commitment to audio perfection. From its exquisite craftsmanship to its groundbreaking technology, these speakers represent the pinnacle of what is achievable in high-fidelity sound reproduction. Whether you’re a music aficionado or a cinephile seeking the ultimate home theater experience, the 800 Series deserves your attention.

In a world where audio quality is often sacrificed for convenience, Bowers & Wilkins reminds us of the beauty of uncompromising sound. It’s a reminder that, in the pursuit of perfection, true artistry can be achieved. So, whether you’re listening to the haunting notes of a violin concerto or the thunderous explosions of an action movie, the Bowers & Wilkins 800 Series will transport you to a world where sound is not just heard, but felt.

Disclaimer: The links provided above will direct you to the respective manufacturer’s websites for detailed product information and purchasing options.

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