Get Your Kit Out – Bowers & Wilkins A5
We were looking enough to get our sticky paws on the beautiful looking A5 speaker system from Bowers & Wilkins. Now, that statement probably sounds a bit indulgent or at best cheesy, but it honestly isn’t. Bowers & Wilkins has always been known for great sound quality and an understanding of how acoustics work.
The unit is effectively one speaker to the naked eye, but what a speaker it is. Full chrome feel with a lovely rounded effect to the finish. The look and feel just oozes quality and you can tell that some lovely creative people have spent a lot of time labouring over the look and its paid off.
Whilst B&W are known for their Zeppelin and the huge intimidating shadow it creates. The A5 is far more subtle. A great compact design and 5 speaker system, belies its capabilities as a first class music system.
The unit is built for sound. It is built for the discerning ear and consequently the main focus is on making sound quality a premium. The quality performs at both a low and high level and regardless of the music type delivers as you would want it to.
The main standout for me is that the music handles bass very well. So if you are in to your bass or beats then this will do your music justice. Turn the volume up and there is little to no distortion.
The range is huge thanks to its five speaker system. The sound is clear from even a long distance, proving the expert engineering put in to its creation. The fact that the system uses Wi-Fi rather than bluetooth is also a plus for me, both in terms of sound quality, but also from a technical aspect. WiFi is generally more, reliable, there is no deterioration of sound and it doesn’t half help the battery life of portable devices.
One of the gripes for the system was that it wasn’t particularly easy to set-up beyond the standard installation. Various issues around streaming music live and connecting your playing device to the speaker limit the initial enjoyment. Downloading the app from the iStore was ridiculously easy though, however the info and help beyond that is limited.
In fact for a long period I couldn’t work out how to make the AirPlay system work and then it decided to work itself.
The device appears on the face of it simple and easy to use, but at the outset of usage there were teething problems. Minor issues with connectivity could have been as much down to wi-fi connection slowing at peaks times as device related. Difficulties getting airplay to work made me cry out for bluetooth, but that has been described above and could equally be down to user error.
In the first few usages the device seemed to bounce in terms of sound quality with regular drops in volume. However, bizarrely like a friendship, my relationship with the B&W A5 improved and it was like it finally accepted me. It all came together and now it loves me. You know what, I am a little in love with it as well.
Initial problems from the Bowers & Wilkins A5 far outweighed by great sound quality. Great design means the device is an absolute enhancement to a room as opposed to an ugly speaker you hide away.
Rating 4/5 – A must have addition for any music lover.
Visit Bowers & Wilkins Online Shop to get your own now