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Bowers & Wilkins A7

Powered speaker system with Apple® AirPlay® wireless streaming

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  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    Front

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    (iPhone not included)

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    A7 in living room

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    A7 on a shelf

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    AirPlay lets you stream to multiple A7s simultaneously.

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    Back

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    Back

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    Front view

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    Left front view

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    Port detail

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    Remote

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    Top view

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    Wirelessly stream from your computer (laptop not included)

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    Wirelessly stream from your iPad (iPad not included)

  • Bowers & Wilkins A7

    With remote

 

Our take on the Bowers & Wilkins A7

by Ralph Graves
Bowers & Wilkins
Bowers & Wilikns A7

The Bowers & Wilkins A7 wireless speaker system uses Apple AirPlay technology to let you stream music from your iPhone®, iPad®, iPod touch®, or computer. And it delivers that music with amazing clarity and accuracy, filling your room with full, natural sound.

Advanced acoustics for extraordinary sound

The system features audiophile-grade electronics and high-performace drivers to reproduce sound far better than what you might expect from such a compact system. A pair of tube-loaded tweeters— an innovation from Bowers & Wilkins' flagship Nautilus™ speaker — ensure the highs remain clean and clear, without sounding strident.

Bowers & Wilkins A7 Flowport detail

The dimples on the Flowport reduce air turbulance for smoother bass.

The two midrange drivers deliver full, natural detail, while the Kevlar™-reinforced  six-inch woofer raccurately eproduces low frequencies. The rear Flowport™ has dimpled holes to reduce air turbulance (much like those on a golf ball), further ensuring that the bass sounds musical, not harsh.

Each of the five drivers is powered by its own amplifier to maximize responsiveness and accuracy. Bowers & Wilkins' propietary Digital Signal Processing circuitry continually analyzes and adjusts the audio signal. This keeps your music balanced, clear and distortion-free at all volume levels — even when you crank it up to maximum volume.

The AirPlay advantage

You can easily play music from you computer wirelessly on the A7 system through iTunes®. You can even stream to multiple A7s (or other AirPlay-compatible systems like the Zeppelin Air) to simultaneously play your music in different locations throughout your home. And you can control the volume levels of each connected player individually or jointly through your computer's iTunes program.

Bowers & Wilkins A7 Airplay

Stream music wirelessly from your computer

With your Apple portable — iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch — you have even more options. Stream music wirelessly directly from your device to the A7. Or use your portable as a remote to control your computer's iTunes library. Through AirPlay you can select songs and playlists, and adjust the volume level of the system as well.

Making the most of other music sources

An Ethernet jack lets you make a wired connection to your home network. Or play music from other portable devices through the system's stereo minijack input. And there's an optical digital inputfor compatible components, such as a CD player. The A7 has a built-in audiophile-quality 24-bit/96kHz upsampling digital-to-analog converter (DAC) that helps this system deliver the best possible performance from wireless and wired digital music sources.

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Highlights:

  • AirPlay lets you stream music wirelessly from your iPod touch, iPhone, iPad, or computer
  • two 1" tweeters and two 3" midrange woofers
  • internal 6" subwoofer
  • 25 watts x 2 for tweeters, 25 watts x 2 for midranges, plus 50 watts for subwoofer
  • frequency response: 40-36,000 Hz
  • high-performance Class-D amplifiers
  • minijack auxiliary input accepts both analog and optical digital connections
  • USB port allows audio playback from your computer and enables firmware upgrades
  • Ethernet port for connection to your home network
  • built-in 24-bit/96kHz upsampling DAC handles wireless and wired digital audio sources
  • remote control
  • AC power cable
  • 14-3/16"W x 8-11/16"H x 8-1/16"D
  • weight: 12.5 lbs.
  • warranty: 2 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • AirPlay powered speaker
  • 6.5' AC power cord
  • Remote control (CR2032 3V battery)
  • A7 Brochure booklet
  • AirPlay Setup booklet
  • Safety Instructions/Warranty
  • Safety Information
  • Battery removal/remote control diagram

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Features

B&W A7 Wireless Music System: The Bowers & Wilkins (B&W) A7 is a wireless powered speaker system that employs Apple's AirPlay technology. Apple's AirPlay technology offers high-quality wireless audio streaming from your iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad; as well as your Windows or Mac computer with iTunes. The A7 uses audiophile-grade Bowers & Wilkins audio technology for a high-fidelity sounding music system that can handle the broadest range of frequencies. The Bowers & Wilkins A7 works great in "out-of-the-way" spaces where it won't be noticed, such as on bookshelves or against walls.

High Quality Audio Design: The Bowers & Wilkins A7 wireless music system is equipped with a Class-D amplifier and digital signal processing (DSP). The Class-D amplifier provides 25W x 4ch (tweeters/mids) + 50 x 1ch (subwoofer). The B&W A7 features two 1" Nautilus tube aluminum tweeters, two 3.0" midrange drivers, and one 6" subwoofer. The wireless music system's enclosure is made from glass-filled ABS and feature's Bowers & Wilkins proprietary Flowport technology. The Bowers & Wilkins Flowport technology dramatically improves the system's overall bass performance. The unit's rear-firing port is dimpled to improve air flow, reducing turbulence. The result is less chuffing noise and less compression at high levels; which means better bass no matter how loud you like your music.

Apple AirPlay Technology: Apple's AirPlay technology allows music, downloaded to iTunes, to be streamed (wired or wirelessly) from your Mac or PC to the B&W A7. You can even bypass the computer entirely, and stream high-quality audio directly from your Apple iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad (all without the need to dock the device). The A7 supports Apple Lossless and MP3 audio file transfer. The B&W A7 and your AirPlay audio source must be connected to the same wireless network via a WiFi (802.11g/n) router or hub.

  • iTunes Streaming: The B&W A7 is able to wirelessly play audio from your computer's iTunes account either wirelessly (WiFi) or via a wired (Ethernet) connection using AirPlay streaming technology. When connected to the same network as a computer running iTunes, the A7 can appear as an output option in the pop-up menu at the bottom of the iTunes window. You can then browse your iTunes collection on your computer and stream music to the A7. To use the AirPlay feature you need a Mac or Windows-based PC running iTunes (10.2.2 or later) connected to the same wireless (WiFi) network as the A7.
  • Apple Device Streaming: AirPlay also lets you wirelessly stream your iTunes music and a variety of music apps (such as Pandora, iHeartRadio, etc) stored on your iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad to the A7. So there's no need to dock your Apple device. The Bowers & Wilkins A7's AirPlay feature works with iPod touch (2nd/3rd/4th/5th gen), iPhone (3GS/4/4S/5), iPad (1/2/3/4), and iPad mini with iOS 4.4.3 or later; connected to the same wireless network.

Simple Setup: In order to connect your Apple device to the B&W A7 wireless music system, you will need to download the Bowers & Wilkins AirPlay Setup App to your iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad (running iOS 4.4.3 or later). The Bowers & Wilkins AirPlay Setup App is also available to download for your Mac computer or Windows PC from the Bowers & Wilkins Support Site, allowing you to set up and manage the wireless music system from your computer.

Auxiliary Input: The rear-panel 3.5mm auxiliary input accepts an analog stereo minijack cable or mini-Toslink digital cable from your external analog or digital audio device. The A7 is able to play stereo digital audio up to 24-bit/96kHz resolution (not compatible with surround-sound encoded 5.1 channel digital audio).

USB Audio Streaming: The A7's USB (type-B) port can be used to stream and playback music that is stored or being streamed on your Mac computer or Windows-based PC. It can also be used for firmware updates.

Remote Control: The supplied wireless IR remote offers Power, Volume Up/Down, and Playback controls. Playback controls include Play/Pause and Previous/Next Track. The remote is powered by a single CR2032 3V lithium battery (pre-installed).

AC Power: The Bowers & Wilkins (B&W) A7 operates off of standard household AC current, using the supplied 6.5' AC power cord. The A7 will automatically enter Sleep mode if left inactive for more than 30 minutes.

 
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Bowers & Wilkins A7 Reviews

Average Customer Review:

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5 out of 5

Great sound from such a small package

Written By Cartman, Houston, TX on Monday, August 04, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Easy to setup. Plug in, download IOS app, and follow instructions. Vocals sounded great. Bass is sufficient. It really depends on where you place the A7 for strength of bass. If you are closer to walls, you'll hear more bass. Mid-range and highs are well balanced.

This unit is not for people listening to heavy bass pounding music, even if you intend to place it in a small room as the size of the sub woofer is the limiting factor.
Pros:
Extremely clear vocals. Small and compact. Well built. Good bass.
Cons:
Unable to use iPhone usb cables to connect to A7.
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5 out of 5

Great Overall Wireless Sound

Written By MikeJ, Houston, TX on Tuesday, June 17, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Love overall punch n clarity in this wireless speaker
Pros:
Love sound, great range and power Good clarity and wireless setup is easy
Cons:
Trouble shoot removing Bluetooth devices which are easy with B&W site to enhance connectivity
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5 out of 5

Perfect Sound

Written By Kurt, Concord MA on Saturday, April 12, 2014
 
Perfect sound. Clear, strong, precise. Simple set up. No regrets.
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3 out of 5

A7 - not for Samsung Galaxy owners

Written By Anonymous, Los Angeles on Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The speaker sounds nice. However, the wireless link gets dropped too frequently. Maybe it's not the speaker's fault but it would have been nice to have the Bluetooth connection as well. My gf has Samsung Galaxy, so she's only able to play via Aux cable. She's not too happy that she can't link wirelessly.
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5 out of 5

Bowers & Wilkins A7

Written By Ken, Maryland on Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
This speaker sounds amazing! Truly fills the room with great sound, worthy of the B&W name. Once set up, so easy to connect you will listen to your music more than ever!
Pros:
Sound
Cons:
Price, but worth it!
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

B&W A7

Written By GregG, Houston, TX on Friday, October 11, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Speaker sound is excellent. Fills up my large living room and is absolutely superb for it's size
Pros:
Sound, Size
Cons:
Airplay cuts out intermittingly at times. I'm working with B&W to optimize some of my router settings to mitigate this. So far their customer service is very timely and helpful.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

B&W A7 wireless speaker

Written By Anonymous, Fulshear, TX on Friday, September 27, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Very good sound, base is excellent and is great even in larger rooms
Pros:
The best wireless speaker
2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

B&W A7 The Best - Awesome Sound

Written By KraigM, West Des Moines,Ia on Saturday, August 10, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Outstanding sound. The sound is clear, clean, dynamic and detailed. You can hear every instrument. Tight bass. You get a wall of sound out of a small box. You can't get a lot of stereo effect from a box that is 14 inches wide. It is there but not real noticeable. Not big deal for me. Very pleasing and accurate sound. Great looking speaker. People are having problems with set up. They need a better router. I too could not get the A7 to connect to my wireless system. I wanted the A7 so I purchased new router to see if it would solve my problem. I bought a stronger router that was good for networking. With the new router my wireless was connected to the A7 n less than 60 seconds. B&W says you need a wireless "N" router. My new router had "B", "G" and "N" signals. The " N" did not work but the "G" signal did. The connection/sound has not failed one time. No loss of signal or drop outs. I just purchased a 2nd A7 to put in my kithchen. It too connected to my wireless system in less than 60 seconds. No loss of signal or drop outs. So maybe people should not blame the B&W app but instead make sure they have a good wireless router. I am totally pleased with the B&W A7 wireless speaker. It is kind of expensive but worth the price. With the sound it gives I would give more than $800 for it. Also Crutchfield is a great place to buy audio equipment. Good prices and fast shipping.
Pros:
Awesome detailed, dynamic, clean sound. Great looking. B&W quality and design. Easy set up. Wide, accurate sound stage
Cons:
None
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5 out of 5

Worth the money

Written By Keith, Alabama on Saturday, August 10, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Sound is great, simple set up. Nothing on the market is close to this unit.
Pros:
Small footprint for the sound quality and the design blends in well with any decor.
Cons:
Have had to reset it a couple of times because it dropped off the wifi network.
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Great musicality, frustrating setup

Written By utekai, chicago, il on Sunday, June 30, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I'd give it 5 stars if they'd just have a single simple little bit of paper that says the two things you need to know to set this up. Without those two little items of info, it can be a frustrating experience.

I got this at the same time as a Marantz Consolette and Denon Cocoon and only kept the A7. But the others looked like they came from the same company with similar build materials, operations and packaging. The Consolette is way too expensive as the best part (the nice looking back) is usually hidden and the Cocoon seems quite adequate in sound. So if you're only looking at those two the Cocoon easily wins.

Bring in the A7 though to compete. It's got a playback musicality that just is simply pleasing to the ear. You can listen to it for long periods without fatigue. Also it's small and the sound dispersion is good giving you lots of placement options. It's got pretty good base, not as booming as the Cocoon, but no less impressive and very clear (not the cardboard-like boom re-creation as the Cocoon gives which lacks musicality though it is a loud bass sounds maker).

So I tried these three devices and the A7 came out on top for a number of reasons beyond just musicality (which frankly should trump all other reasons anyway when you're buying a speaker). Anyway in addition to it's simplistic and small size and fairly good design, it seemed to just stayed better connected to Airplay. The Cocoon seemed to drop offline some and it's remote interfered with the A7.
Pros:
Size, design, looks, operation. Excellent musicality, and this is it's strong point. B&W really designed a musical speaker.
Cons:
Initial setup.
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4 out of 5

A7...A+

Written By Erasdil, Nerw york, NY on Thursday, June 27, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Excellent product. Performed as promised. Great sound quality with little to know distortion. Was worried about it dropping the airplay connection after reading reviews prior to purchase, but I experienced zero complications in the set up (maybe it's b/c I have an all Apple configuration). My only complaint is the price; I still think it's a bit north of where it should be (thus the 4 stars out of 5)
Pros:
Sound Quality Easy Set Up
Cons:
Price
3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

B&W A7 powered loudspeaker

Written By ReidP, Reidsville, NC on Wednesday, June 26, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
This speaker meets every need I had for music reproduction. It is crystal clear, with powerful yet unobtrusive sound. It's small size belies what emanates from it. Makes me wish I had one for every room. Highly recommended.
Pros:
Disappears until turned on.
Cons:
none
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

B&W A7

Written By Jose B, Mayaguez, PR on Tuesday, June 04, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
B&W A7 does justice to the legendary audiophile speaker manufacturer. The sound out of the A7 is just awesome when you compare it with others like the Samsung, Bose Airlink, etc. The bass goes a bit heavy and placement is critical in order to get a balanced sound. Corner placement is not recommended, but placement on a speaker stand about a foot off the room's short wall is great. This is a great audiophile product. Highly fecommended.
Pros:
Great presence, beautiful design, loud as it can get....
Cons:
Too much bass and little stereo effect.
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great speaker!

Written By STran, Pasadena, MD on Friday, May 31, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Great sound. Highly recommend the product.
Pros:
Great clarity.
Cons:
Pricey.
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5 out of 5

B&W A7

Written By EliH, Philadelphia on Thursday, May 30, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Great Sound especially for acoustical and classical music. No surround sound sensation but I guess that is to be expected as it is one box but I may try it in a different location. I wish I has some guidance on adjusting the EQ from iTunes as that changes the sound a lot but that may be a personal preference issue . No connectivity problems. Great Look
Pros:
Sound, simplicity, appearance
Cons:
I like it a lot and would get again - but I was not "blown away" though my wife tells me to turn down the volume so I have not put it to the " final test" yet
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5 out of 5

Fantastically Magical

Written By Bobby W, San Antonio, TX on Sunday, March 24, 2013
 
I've had this speaker for a little over a month and did an extensive amount of research prior to purchasing. I wanted to free myself of hiding wires and found that Bluetooth, while decent, didn't provide a way of using more than one unit at a time. The A7 is eloquently understated, while sonically very pleasing to the ears. I have purchased two, along with the Z2 and can use them to fill my home with clear, wireless sound. All of the units seem to disappear in the various rooms of my home until I use my iPhone, iPad, or Mac to command them into action. I have received nothing but compliments on their clarity.
Pros:
Beautiful styling
Cons:
Pricey
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Sounds incredible, looks beautiful, works seamlessly

Written By Scott F, Atlanta, GA on Monday, March 11, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I've owned two different sets of Bowers & Wilkins speakers over the years. We couldn't deal with the wires anymore, so I was excited to find the A7.

I put one A7 in our master bedroom and a second in our main area. It's a gorgeous unit and it sounds incredible. The sound is clean and crisp, easily filling a decent-sized room and with power to spare.

(Side note: I also was pleased to find the Panorama 2, which complements the A7 speakers well and does a great job with surround.)

My only A7 complaint is the use of 2003-era 802.11g Wi-Fi. I live in a loft building, and my neighbors' devices (microwaves, other Wi-Fi networks, etc.) interfere with one of the units, causing sound to drop out frequently. This is a known problem with 802.11g and its use of the 2.4GHz band. It's 2013 and this is an expensive device, so it doesn't seem unreasonable to expect 5GHz 802.11n support.

I "fixed" the problem by buying an Airport Express, setting it to Client Mode, and connecting the unit to it via Ethernet. This effectively converted the device to use 5GHz 802.11n, which is far less interference-prone (and is much faster). It seems to be working, but I shouldn't have had to do it.

I love these units and would buy them again in a heartbeat. However, this review would be five stars, shorter, and sweeter if the Wi-Fi support was better.
Pros:
Beautiful device Incredible sound
Cons:
Use of 802.11g Wi-Fi
9 out of 10 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

B&W A7

Written By RKY, Middleburg, Fl on Sunday, March 10, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Nice clean sound & easy to connect (link).
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4 out of 5

You pay a premium for this wonderful sounding device

Written By layline, New Bern, NC on Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Using the ihpone app, the initial sync was very easy. Bass is a little boomy but can be tweaked with source equalization or stuffing a small sock in the rear reflex port. It's luggable: just unplug, slip your hand in the reflex port, and plug in the power at the new location of your choice. The sound is terrific, but you'll hear the lossage if you have a low-fii source like 128bit MP# or the hackneyed engineering you find on most popular music destined for the car radio. It's great for background music where you'd still like to be delighted by musical colors and nuances. I had little trouble with dropouts when playing sources on my home network. The dropouts I've experienced all occur with internet music sources. But I haven't pushed the range - it works just fine wherever I've wanted to place it within my Wi-Fi network.
Pros:
Wonderful clarity you'll hear every instrument - that's what it's about, right? The music holds together well at higher volumes. The unit is readily luggable and designer handsome.
Cons:
Boomy bass, Airplay lags, the small black remote is readily misplaced and likes to stay hidden. As expected for such a narrow unit, there's no soundstage. A similar great sounding system can be built with an Apple Airport Express and smaller quality monitors for several hundred dollars less. You pay a premium for the designer look and luggability of the A7. There's several seconds of internal buffering so Airplay lags.
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

I was skeptical at first...

Written By Nick, Bayshore, NY on Friday, February 08, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
As I un boxed the unit I asked myself how is this little box going to fill my room with hifi sound. But to my surprise it sounded great! The air play is not so hard to set up as some have stated, just follow the steps and you should be fine. I set my unit up in about 4 minutes . I am truly amazed by the crystal clear audio . If your looking for something with blue tooth this Is not the unit for you. Bluetooth is inferior compared to air play that's why B&W went with air play. You will not find anything at or under $800 that sounds better than the A7.
Pros:
Crystal clear audio, multiple ways to control A7, small foot print, deep bass , long ac cord.
Cons:
None
5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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3 out of 5

horrible app

Written By Rodriguez, Miami, FL on Saturday, February 02, 2013
 
The sound is really good, but the fustration of the software / app to connect and control the device is beyond believe. I can not understand how you spend this much on a quality wireless speaker, only to have to set it up every other time you use the device. Is one of the worst users experiences i have ever had. I know the sound quality is really good, but the user experience is horrible. Please, B&W, fixed the software!!!!
Pros:
sound quality
Cons:
app not working, device disconnecting all the time
6 out of 6 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

QUITE AMAZING

Written By ELMO, NYC on Friday, January 25, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
You must have a working Wi-Fi network and download the B&W app in order to get connected. It took about half an hour of hacking around but I managed to pull it off.

This sound is quite remarkable. It compares favorably with my very expensive living room stereo/hi-fi set up. In fact, I think I will replace my existing speakers with B&W at a later date. It surprised me to find out that I can use the A7 directly from my iPhone/iPad/AppleTV. It really is very handy to keep the iPhone next to my bed and crank up some music before bed and while getting dressed in the morning.

Pros:
wonderful sound; connection to wi-fi
Cons:
a bit tricky to set up
1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Bowers & Wilkins A7

Written By jay5r, New York, NY on Saturday, December 29, 2012
 
I almost returned the A7. When I sent music to it using AirFoil it was out of sync with the other speakers in the house. But after a day it mysteriously starting being in sync with everything else. I also had some problems with the music cutting out when I ran it over WiFi, but since I plugged it into Ethernet that has stopped being a problem. But getting Ethernet to work was horribly confusing. You can't just choose the Ethernet connection from the setup app. You have to press the buttons on the remote in a special combination. The feedback from the A7 is confusing. I never was sure it was working until I unplugged the Ethernet cable and the music stopped.

Sound-wise I'd say it's "good", but not great. At this price I was hoping / expecting "great" - so that was a disappointment. It has a bit too much bass for my tastes. It would be nice to be able to adjust the bass level - but that's not something that's possible.

In the end I kept it because 1) it looks great, 2) it's the perfect size for the location I want to have it in, and 3) most people who come over won't mind or notice the extra bass.
Pros:
Great design, compact, powerful sound.
Cons:
Expensive, a bit too much bass for my tastes, remote control is confusing (can't figure it out by touch alone).
3 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Fantastic Sound, Easy Setup

Written By Flurane, Battle Ground, WA on Sunday, December 23, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Have owned this product for a week. I needed an airplay-compatible sound system for my great room, and I wanted excellent sound without taking up a lot of space. This speaker fills that niche perfectly. Setup with the downloadable app was simple. The sound is fantastic and this small unit fills a large great room with 10 foot ceilings without sounding strained. No discernable stereo separation, but that was expected given the size. Overall, a solid performer. I have only used it with apple devices, but it has worked without issue with both iOS 5 and Macs running mountain lion.
Pros:
Easy setup; large sound from a small and inconspicuous box.
Cons:
Limited stereo separation.
5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great compact sound system

Written By Matt, O Fallon, IL on Sunday, December 23, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I purchased the A7 as a Christmas gift for my wife. She had purchased a bose Bluetooth soundlink for me for Father's Day, and we have both loved it. I was looking for something with higher sound quality that didn't need to be portable, and initially thought to try the bose sounddock 10. I got it home and auditioned it, and was underwhelmed by it overall. It can go very loud, it had ok bass, but it just didn't impress. I started looking for something else, and came across the a7. I purchased it and auditioned it head to head with the bose sounddock. I have a good ear (used to be a professional musician), but I don't know much about the technical aspects of digital music. My initial impression was that as soon as the A7 came on, it was as if a door opened up into a live performance, while with the bose, it was flat, and sounded as if it was a loud version of my mac speakers. I think this has to do with better Digital to analog conversion in the A7. Also, my impression is that the A7 has much better high frequency reproduction, and this lends to creating a more realistic reproduction of the recording environment. I was playing apple lossless files at first, but where the magic really happened was when I played FLAC files. There was a definite improvement in quality in both units, but it felt as if Diana Krall was in the room with the A7. Then, I cranked both up and played "Pines of Rome", FLAC file (recorded in the 1960's). Tears came to my eyes with the A7, not with the bose.
Pros:
Great high frequency reproduction; very good bass response.
Cons:
Occasional wifi dropout, but overall this is rare.
7 out of 7 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Small Box / Great Sound / Convenient

Written By glennyb, Hollidaysburg, PA on Monday, December 17, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
My wife's been after me to "put speakers" in the kitchen for about three years now . . . you know, tear up the ceiling run wires to an amp . . . $$$$$$. I'm glad I'm a procrastinator. First, the sound that comes out of this little box is incredible. Extremely clear and crisp with excellent bass response. Next, connecting them was easy. I did have a little trouble with the initial software setup, but after about a half hour things were up and running. (Most other reviewers had no trouble with the setup, but I went through the typical computer setup routine of trying it four or five times until it worked.) Three, the wireless connectivity is incredible. You can play music from your computer or an iPhone (and probably other phones). It is so simple to use and all of your (and your wife's and kids') music is easily piped into this speaker no matter where you are in your house. It's really incredible. I initially balked at the $800 price tag, but I have some other full-sized B & W (wired) speakers that I bought about ten years ago, so I decided to try this one. The A7 isn't going to produce that big sound you get from a pair of big stereo speakers, but I was really impressed with how spatial the stereo sound was coming from just a single box. The stereo effect is clearly noticeable. I placed the speaker in a corner of our kitchen and I haven't even felt the need to even try it in another location. The sound is really, really good and the clarity is phenomenal.
Pros:
Sound quality, wireless simplicity, convenience
Cons:
Only a small hitch in the setup, but that was probably just me
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Bowers-Wilkins A 7

Written By Anonymous, Corvallis, Oregon on Sunday, December 16, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The A 7 is a wonderful speaker. There is an amazing amount of sound from such a small box. Especially pleasant is the amount of bass from the A 7.
Pros:
Wireless connection gives a lot of flexibility in placement. Great sound. Surprisingly stunning bass sound.
Cons:
For a non technical person, the set up was a little confusing but one call to Crutchfield solved my confusion.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

VERY Happy!!!

Written By E. B, Cambridge, NY on Wednesday, December 12, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Arrived from Crutchfield in bulletproof packaging. Downloaded the B&W app and set the device up using my iPad. Installation was quick and easy-I just followed the app directions and was listening to music in less than 5 minutes. The device COMPLETELY exceeded my expectations which were high to begin with. I already own B&W MM 1 speakers for my desktop so I was already a fan. Clarity, presence and sound rival full blown systems without all the hardware and works flawlessly with all my devices. Blends right in to my decor. Sound fills my very large living space (14 x 32) and is full and loud enough for any party or gathering with no detectable distortion or dropped connection. Works great with my five year old Apple router. Most of my music is Apple Lossless files. While I am not a hard core audiophile, I can tell you this will please even the most discriminating listener for most music. Obviously, there is not the kind of stereo separation you'd experience with a set of separate speakers (the "Little Bird" cut on Annie Lenox's Diva sounds a little confined) but Eric Clapton's "Layla" and "Pretending" sound like he's in the room with me--it's THAT good. It's pricy but in my opinion it just blows the competition away. I purchased here at Crutchfield because it gives me 60 days to try it and they have a great return policy; I think they'll be prying the A7 from my cold, dead hands. If that changes I'll update my review but for now, it's highly recommended.
Pros:
Easy set up, GREAT sound, airplay works extremely well, blends into most decorating schemes (Very unobtrusive but attractive) and easy to use. An easy choice over the A5 because of the DAC, 6" Sub and lots more punch for $300 more.
Cons:
On the pricy side but you get what you pay for. Made in China but so is all my Apple gear. Always "on" so there is a small but ongoing electric use. Will spoil you for less expensive alternatives.
2 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Worth it

Written By Carolina, Miami, FL on Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The A7 is a great buy. If I use airplay from my computer I get complete uninterrupted sound. When I use my iPhone I have gotten some skips in the music but only after gently throwing my phone on the sofa. I like that you can have these speakers throughout the house and stream music to all of them at the same time or choose which speakers to stream to. I use a N wireless router.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

very good but not perfect

Written By tennisfreak, Chicago, IL on Thursday, December 06, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
setup can be a little finicky with no real documentation describing exactly what the apps are supposed to be doing (i.e., changing the device ip address to be reachable on your local subnet). i finally got the Windows app to work after giving up in frustration with the iOS version, but even then it took 2 or 3 tries (with at least one paper clip hard reset of the A7) before things worked as they should. amplifier is powerful and the sound is quite good in a large bedroom. airplay now takes a couple of seconds to connect but is acceptably reliable.
Pros:
compact and attractive system, very good sound quality
Cons:
setup glitches, occasional airplay dropouts, lack of true stereo separation
2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Loving It!

Written By Stormy, Pennsylvania on Thursday, November 29, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I really love the B&W A7. It looks great...very stylish and sounds amazing! I've tried it with several genres of music and have no complaints thus far. The only problem I've found is the set up wasn't as easy as I had anticipated and I consider myself technically savvy. B&W could improve on their set up instructions. Other than that, I would highly recommend this product to anyone looking for a nice bookshelf system....though I think it's much more than that.
Pros:
Stylish, amazing sound
Cons:
Set up instructions need more detail.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Awesome A7

Written By Jerry L, NOVA, VA on Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Thoroughly impressed by the sound quality and clarity. Everything sounds great through the A7 but instrumental music is amazing. Again, the clarity is beyond anything I have heard through any other wireless or powered speaker option. Currently own a Bose also set in the basement and enjoy it but the B&W is in a different league. The wireless option through AirPlay is the ultimate way to use the A7. With multiple phones and iPads in the house the A7 is in near constant use with just a touch of the screen. Really nice !!
Pros:
Sound style functionality. Amazing. Top of the class.
Cons:
Price.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Awsome sound, setup shortcoming

Written By Gabor, Los Altos, CA on Saturday, November 17, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The A7 has an excellent sound! Having the left and right channels in the small footprint close by diminishes somewhat the feel of stereo experience, a price for compactness. The setup has issues thought! B&W currently does not support network passwords containing #,&,@ ... This might become cumbersome and challenging, when you have to change your network password. I strongly feel for the price the setup should not have such shortcomingns. Newertheless the sound quality is awesome...
Pros:
Sound quality
Cons:
Stereo experience is limited with the compact design Software setup has issues due to limited network password character support!!!
4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

LOVE IT!!

Written By Skye C., San Francisco, CA on Monday, November 12, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Not sure what all the negative comments are about the airplay....Plugged it in, downloaded B&W app to my iphone, followed the apps instructions, and BAM music was playing. And the sound is beautiful!
Pros:
Sound quality, ease, and beauty
Cons:
None so far
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4 out of 5

BW great sound, drops sound more than I would like

Written By Bob A, Pittsburgh on Sunday, November 11, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The sound is great and they are very pretty. Set up is easy and naming intuitive For some reason, however, Airplay does go in and out more than I would expect given the price. It may be that I need to move the router around but there are not great instructions bout how to do this and it is as common for the zepplain in the next room as the speakers downstairs. I think that is the biggest downside
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Awesome :)

Written By KeVo, E-P, Texas on Wednesday, November 07, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Future recommendations for B&W - It would be great if they sold a cable you can connect your iPod/iPhone via the Apple 30-pin/Apple lightning to the back USB input in order to pull music from iPod digitally, like the B&W zeppelin air. This would require new internal software but I'm sure it's do-able for them.

WiFI only G band- I had to relocate my apple extreme router to keep the audio stream from clipping. My Wi-Fi signal would travel across 3 drywall walls and a distance of maybe 40 feet. My iPhone has 2 out of 3 bars, my MacBook has full bars and the B&W shows only 2 out of 5 bars and it would clip/hiccup sometimes, not a lot, but enough to get a little annoying. Once I moved the router closer however I haven't had that problem. Also make sure to set it up using a static ip address on your router settings to avoid any total loss of connection.
Pros:
Excellent detail in music, I think my tastes in music have even shifted now because of it. Thanks B&W. I can go on and on here but I'm sure you'll read about them elsewhere.
Cons:
This is a dedicated wireless music system, shouldn't it have Wi-Fi 802.11n technology that's 3 years old already, especially considering the price? Sadly it has only 802.11g. Made in China? How come that's not shown in the promo video? Jk. I'm sure they make a lot of money on this thing.
10 out of 16 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Awesome Speaker

Written By Casey D., Crystal River, Fl on Saturday, November 03, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Speaker has unbelievable sound! The Airplay set up is a pain and pretty tricky. I thought the unit was actually bad out of the box. Luckily I found the small reset button on the back of the speaker. I reset the unit and luckily the set up worked for me the second time around. I'm glad it worked too because this B & W speaker has great sound! It has great low end sound! The low end audio is where a lot of these wireless speakers or docked speakers miss out on. This is the best sounding speaker of this type I have heard, and I have heard most of them!
Pros:
Great sound! Great low end audio (has a good thump)! Only cable is the one that plugs in to the wall.
Cons:
Airplay set up is complicated. I had to use my reset button a couple times and delete the app and reload it.
6 out of 6 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Unbelievable Sound

Written By Davbo, Tampa, FL on Monday, October 29, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
This thing sounds amazing! The only tricky part was setting up Airplay. Your network password can only be letters and numbers. No spaces or special characters. Weird requirement but that's the way it has to be to work. It is truly amazing the beautiful sound that this relatively small unit can produce. Blows away every other powered speaker system that I've listened to. There is no sound degradation using Airplay (unlike Bluetooth)...at least to my ears. Awesome Crutchfield customer service..
Pros:
Awesome sound from such a small box Beautiful design
Cons:
Network password format restrictions are odd and not listed in the instructions that come with the unit
13 out of 13 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Best B&W

Written By Alqassimi, Houston, TX on Sunday, October 28, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I have order B&W A7 over night because I cannot wait for it and I want to try it! This is the best speaker for iPod, iPad, iPhone, the sound very nice fill my big living room and the bass is perfect and it's perfect for jazz and not just jazz for all kind of music! If you want to by speaker for any apple product this is the best of the best and worth every penny. I have high end speaker from B&W 800D with classe amp and there is nothing better thin this brand because they just make speaker that mean they are very Focus in there job!
6 out of 26 people found this helpful
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1 question already asked

I'm living outside of the US at the moment and want to know if the A7 that ships within the US works for both 110 & 240? Panorama 1's didn't but panorama 2's do... Thanks [ David  Jan 19, 2014 ]
3 answers
  • I HAVE NO KNOWLEDGE ON THIS EXACT PRODUCT I WAS IN THE US ARMY AND I KNOW THAT THER IS ALOT OF THING,S THAT DONOT WORK OVERSEAS OR HEAR THER TV WAS CALLED PAL WILE OURS IS NTSC ATSC. [ ROBERT P   Jan 27, 2014 ]
  • My A7 is for 110V USA use only, but in their safety instructions they mention some products come with more than one power cable for use in other countries. You should contact B&W and see it they have such a cable. It would be worth your trouble. The A7 sounds gooood! [ DAVID M   Jan 19, 2014 ]
  • Yes, it's multi voltage. It works with both 110 and 240v. Yought also try attaching an optical video out fr [ BURNS   Jan 19, 2014 ]

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Compare with other Bowers & Wilkins models

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