Zeppelin flies again as B&W relaunches wireless icon

posted on Wednesday, 13th October 2021 by Steve May

Multi-room  Wireless  Streaming  Bluetooth 

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Bowers & Wilkins has relaunched its iconic Zeppelin wireless speaker, now fully adapted for life in the streaming era. The shape may look much the same, but this is a radically re-engineered model to what we’ve seen before.

The original Zeppelin rocked an iPod dock back in 2007, but this time around it uses aptX Adaptive Bluetooth. it will also gain multi room functionality with a firmware update in 2022. Users will be able to link multiple Zeppelin speakers, as well as integrate it with B&W's Formation wireless speaker range.

Amazon Alexa is built-in, so there's no need to rely on connected Alexa components.

Behind the grille is a stereo speaker array, comprising 89mm FST (Fixed Suspension Transducer) mid-range drivers and a pair of 25mm Decoupled Double Dome tweeters. These are mounted at the far edges of the enclosure, isolated from vibrations running through the cabinet generated by other, larger drive units.

This speaker tech uses technology tricked down from the brand’s 800 Series Diamond, as used in Abbey Road Studios, and 600 Anniversary Series loudspeakers. These are bolstered by a 152mm bass driver, positioned centrally.

Zeppelin Pearl Grey Drive Units White Background (1)
The speaker assemblies are mounted in an ultra-rigid, FEA-optimised enclosure sculpted, we’re told, to ensure the best possible acoustic performance, with minimal material around the edges of each drive unit for improved sound dispersion. Total power output is rated at a beefy 240W.

There are no physical inputs, unsurprisingly. The speaker supports Bluetooth v5.0, with aptX Adaptive. Apple users can take advantage of Airplay 2. Spotify Connect is built-in, while the B&W Music App will offer up Tidal, Qobuz, Last.fm, Deezer and TuneIn.

The all-new Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin comes in Midnight or Pearl Grey, and boasts a switchable, dimmable 'halo' light that illuminates the speaker's central stand.

Available now, it sells for £699.

Steve May

Inside CI Editor Steve May is a freelance technology specialist who also writes for T3TechRadarHome Cinema Choice, Trusted Reviews and The Luxe Review.

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