Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless
Powered speaker with Apple® AirPlay® and Bluetooth® (White)
Our take on the Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless by Crutchfield's Ralph Graves
The best just got better
I've reviewed both the original Zeppelin and the Zeppelin Air — and was impressed by both. So I was glad to have a chance to check out the Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless. As expected, I found it to be an advancement over the previous versions, with upgraded speakers, electronics, and wireless options.
The Zeppelin Wireless' distinctive shape isn't just for show — it's designed to hold left and right tweeters and midrange speakers as far apart as possible, angled for optimal sound dispersion. The thick center holds a 6” long-throw woofer that delivers low frequencies with accuracy.
The Zeppelin Wireless' casing is 50% thicker than previous models, virtually eliminating vibration to ensure clean, accurate sound. Each of the five speakers is also powered by its own Class D amplifier, optimizing responsiveness. And the high-performance digital signal processor delivers a clean, accurate signal to those speakers.
The system features aptX® audio coding, an advanced type of Bluetooth wireless streaming that retains virtually all the detail of the audio signal it carries. The Zeppelin Wireless is also compatible with AAC Bluetooth, which enhances the quality of transmission from compatible devices such as Apple portables.
And if your Bluetooth device doesn't have aptX or use AAC Bluetooth, don't worry. The system is backwards-compatible with earlier forms of Bluetooth. So you can wirelessly stream your music from almost any portable device and still enjoy great sound.
Best overall combo of style, sound, and usability [of the speakers we tested]. If you're an audiophile or an Apple user, get this one. I would.
Dave Brown, A/V Writer and Editor, from our article Best of the Best Bluetooth speakers
The Zeppelin Wireless also has Apple AirPlay technology built in. This lets you wirelessly connect your iPhone®, iPad®, iPod touch® or computer running iTunes® to the system via your Wi-Fi® network. You can also stream audio from your Apple portable directly to the Zeppelin Wireless. Use your Apple portable as a remote to make selections, as well as adjust volume. (Requires Apple's free Remote app.)
Spotify Connect and more
You can also enjoy the convenience of Spotify Connect with the Zeppelin Wireless. Spotify Connect lets you play Spotify's streaming music library through your system via your smartphone or tablet (requires Spotify app and a premium subscription).
Want more? You can also play music from other portable devices through the system's stereo minijack input.
- built-in Wi-Fi for AirPlay streaming from iPhone®, iPad®, iPad mini®, or iPod touch®
- Bluetooth with aptX audio coding for greater sonic detail with compatible devices
- Spotify Connect lets you play Spotify's streaming music library via your smartphone or tablet (requires Spotify app and a premium subscription)
- two 1" Double Dome tweeters and two 3-1/2" midrange drivers with fixed suspension transducers
- internal long-throw 6" woofer with rear-firing ports
- each speaker individually driven by high-performance class D amplifiers
- high-performance digital signal processor
- frequency response: 44-28,000 Hz
- 25 watts x 2 for tweeters, 25 watts x 2 for midranges, plus 50 watts for woofer
- thick resonance-free MDF cabinet
- stereo minijack auxiliary input for connecting a portable music player
- USB port (for firmware updates)
- RJ-45 Ethernet port
- AC power required (power cable included)
- 25-15/16"W x 7-3/8"H x 7-3/16"D
- weight: 14.33 lbs.
- warranty: 2 years
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
What's in the Box:
- Wireless powered speaker
- AC power cord
- Quick Start Guide
- Safety Instructions/Warranty booklet
- Online Product Registration
- Bowers & Wilkins brochure
Beautiful! But sound - just ok- High volume distortion- Bass not that great - had the none wireless model before & it sounded much better! Bought this one for the wireless connectivity. If you want good sound by none wireless & get the adaptor.
Rick, Los Angeles, CA
Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless Reviews
Average Customer Review(s):
Thanks for submitting your review
2.1Ch Discrete Audio: The Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless features a 2.1ch speaker design with five speakers individually driven by dedicated class-D amplifiers totaling 150 watts. The high frequencies are handled by a pair of 1" double dome tweeters, while midrange frequencies are provided by two 3.5" FST (Fixed Suspension Transducer) cone drivers; each tweeter & midrange driver is powered by a discrete 25 watt amplifier. A single 6" woofer driven by a dedicated 50 watt amp delivers deep bass sound.
Digital Signal Processing (DSP): Zeppelin Wireless speaker's proprietary Bowers & Wilkins Digital Signal Processing (DSP) using double-precision processing and in-house algorithms optimizes speaker control. Simply put, this means Zeppelin Wireless performs like a considerably larger loudspeaker and produces room filling, controlled bass no matter how loud you like your music.
Wireless & Wired Network Connection: The Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless supports wired (Ethernet) and wireless (WiFi) network connectivity, so you can access AirPlay for Apple iOS devices & your iTunes account on your Windows PC or Mac computer; plus Spotify Connect for Apple iOS devices & Android smartphones/tablets.
- Built-in WiFi: The Zeppelin Wireless is equipped with built-in WiFi for a wireless network connection. The Zeppelin Wireless is compatible with the 802.11a/b/g/n IEEE WiFi standards, as well as 2.4Ghz/5Ghz bands. WEP and WPA/WPA2 personal encryptions are supported. WiFi setup can be configured through the B&W Control App on your Apple iOS device, Windows PC, or Mac computer.
- Ethernet Jack: The Zeppelin Wireless is fitted with a Ethernet (RJ-45) LAN jack, so you can connect to your home's network via an Ethernet cable (sold separately). A high-quality, shielded network cable (CAT5 or CAT6) is recommended. You will need a computer with an Ethernet jack and access to the internet to open a dedicated web browser (192.168.11.1) in order to setup this type of hardwired connection.
B&W Control App: With the B&W Control app, it's simple to set up the Zeppelin Wireless, manage your settings, and control what's playing from your Apple iOS (7.0+) device, Windows PC, or Mac computer. The Bowers & Wilkins Control app is not available to download on Android devices. Android users can either setup the Zeppelin Wireless via the Mac or PC version of the Control app, or via the dedicated web browser for Mac or PC.
AirPlay: Apple's AirPlay technology allows music, downloaded to iTunes, to be streamed wirelessly from your Mac or PC to the Zeppelin Wireless. You can even bypass the computer entirely, and wirelessly stream high-quality audio directly from your Apple iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad. The Zeppelin Wireless even supports Apple Lossless audio file transfer. The Zeppelin Wireless 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 Zeppelin Wireless is able to 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 Zeppelin Wireless 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 Zeppelin Wireless. To use the Zeppelin Wireless AirPlay feature you need a Mac (OS X Mountain Lion - up) computer or Windows-based PC running iTunes (10.2.2 or later) connected to the same wireless (WiFi) network.
- Apple Device Streaming: AirPlay also lets you wirelessly stream music and music apps stored on your iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad to the Zeppelin Wireless. So there's no need to dock your Apple device, unless you want to charge it. By downloading Apple's free Remote app onto your iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad you don't even need to be in the same room as the components or your computer to play, pause, skip, and stop the songs in your iTunes music library. The Zeppelin Wireless AirPlay feature works with iPod touch, iPhone, and iPad with iOS 4.3.3 or later - connected to the same wireless network. The Zeppelin Wireless will require a firmware update for Apple iOS (9.0+) devices.
- Multi-Room Streaming: If you have more than one Zeppelin Wireless, you can use them in an multi-room system. You can play the same music soundtrack from your computer's iTunes account on every Zeppelin Wireless in your home or select which Zeppelin Wireless you want to listen to from your computer. A maximum of three Zeppelin Wireless units are recommended. Multi-room streaming is not supported via your iPod touch, iPhone, or iPad.
Spotify Connect: Spotify Connect lets you play Spotify through the Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless, using the Spotify app on your Apple iOS (7.0+) or Android device as a remote. You'll need a Spotify Premium account to use Spotify Connect. Spotify is a digital music service that gives you on-demand access to one of the largest music libraries in the world (over 15 million tracks and counting). Spotify makes it easier than ever to discover, manage, and share music with your friends. You can browse music by artist, album, track, or most popular; and create your own music library with customized playlists.
Bluetooth 4.1 (A2DP/AVRCP): The Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless offers built-in Bluetooth (version 4.1) for wireless music streaming of stored music files and music apps on your Bluetooth-enabled Apple iPod/iPhone/iPad, Android smartphone/tablet, Windows PC/Phone, or Mac computer/laptop. You are able to control basic playback functions like Volume Up/Down, Play/Pause, & Previous/Next Track from the Zeppelin Wireless. Advanced navigation and song/artist information will still be done from your Bluetooth-enabled device.
- SBC, AAC, & aptX: In addition to support for the standard SBC Bluetooth audio codec, the Zeppelin Wireless offers support for AAC & aptX codecs for higher quality audio streaming from select Apple & Android devices. By supporting AAC, the Zeppelin Wireless offers better audio performance of the music streamed from your Apple iPod, iPhone, or iPad. aptX audio coding technology provides even better sound quality with lossless, CD-quality streaming for compatible aptX-compatible smartphones, like many Android smartphones with OS 4.0+.
- Multi-Device Pairing: You can pair up to 8 devices with the Zeppelin Wireless, but only one device can be active at a time. The Zeppelin Wireless will automatically connect to the last connected audio source device if the two are brought within range (up to 33') of one another, even if another paired device is also within range.
Note: The Zeppelin Wireless will wake from standby mode when a Bluetooth connection is made, but will not switch from an active stream to the Bluetooth audio device until an audio stream is initiated on the Bluetooth audio device.
Aux Input: The rear-panel stereo minijack (3.5mm) input allows you to listen to an external analog audio device that has a headphone jack or analog audio output. The Zeppelin Wireless will select its Aux input automatically when a cable is inserted and deselect the input when the cable is removed. When the Zeppelin Wireless is playing back another source, it will detect audio activity on the AUX input and switch to this input automatically.
Top-Panel Controls: On the top of Zeppelin Wireless are the volume and playback controls. These can be used to raise or lower the volume, to play or pause a music stream and to select the next or previous track. The Zeppelin Wireless is designed to be simple and convenient in operation and will automatically play the most recent audio stream or input signal it receives. There is no need to manually select sources or the AUX input.
LED Indicator: A status indicator is located within the Bowers & Wilkins logo on the front of the Zeppelin Wireless. The status indicator changes color and illumination pattern to indicate different operational states. The Zeppelin Wireless also provides some audible feedback during Bluetooth pairing and connection.
AC Power: The Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless speaker operates off of standard household current (100-240V; 50/60Hz) using its built-in power supply and detachable AC power cord. This speaker is not battery powered.
Auto Standby: If there is no signal or operation for approximately 20 minutes, the Zeppelin Wireless will automatically switch to standby mode. It can be switched back on by pressing the power button.
Mounting Options: The B&W Zeppelin Wireless speaker can simply be placed on a flat table-top surface, like a shelf, desk, stand, or end-table. The speaker can also be wall mounted using Bowers & Wilkins' proprietary wall-mount bracket (sold separately).
Firmware Updates: Firmware updates may from time to time be available for the Zeppelin Wireless. Firmware update notifications, download, and installation is managed using the Bowers & Wilkins Control app for Apple iOS, Windows PC, or Mac.
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 verify what’s in the box, 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.
Why did you buy this?
The quality. [ Sam Jun 05, 2018 ]
Recommended from friend! [ Adult Day Care Aug 14, 2017 ]
Best reviews and Design aesthetics. I wanted a Home WiFi connected speaker. [ John Apr 25, 2017 ]
I chose this because I have other B & W Products and the build and sound quality are outstanding. [ T Dec 19, 2016 ]
Positive reviews [ Dr David M. Sep 29, 2016 ]
Excellent Reviews [ Michael Sep 27, 2016 ]
Very good reviews throughout internet, met my needs for a wireless speaker that I can move around, and had the connectivity I needed for an upcoming event. Also, wanted to buy from Crutchfield based on my past experiences and their knowledge of the products. [ Christopher Apr 27, 2016 ]
I have one and ordered one as a gift for someone who enjoyed mine so much [ Terry Mar 04, 2016 ]
reviews on the Crutchfield and B&W websites. [ David Jan 09, 2016 ]
good quality prior experience with company [ B Sep 22, 2016 ]
3 questions already asked
I personally do not own the Sonos. However I do own the Bang & Olufsen Beolit 15, as well as the Peachtree DeepBlue 2. I must say that compared to these two speakers the Bowers & Wilkins is my favorite. [ JOHN M May 29, 2016 ]
I have no reference for the sonos 5. I'm very pleased with quality of sound with my Zeppelin. [ Steven May 28, 2016 ]
Sorry, have never had one This has airplay and bluetooth Robust sound Artistic eye catching design Happy shopping [ Jorge May 27, 2016 ]
I have no experience at all with the Yamaha, sorry. We have been very happy with the Zeppelin, however. [ Brent Mar 03, 2016 ]
They are two different products in a sense. The NX N500's are two individual speakers that can be separated and placed in spots where you might need them. The Zeppelin is much more portable and can't be staged nearly as well. However, the sound is very comparable to the Yamaha's. [ Terry Mar 03, 2016 ]
Sorry, can't give you an opinion as I haven't heard the Yamaha. This sounds excellent, don't hesitate to get it! Its sound fuller than the previous model and has better connectivity. [ JOSE Mar 03, 2016 ]
Thanks for your question. For information on comparing two or more models I would recommend reaching out to an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. They will be able to help determine the differences and help you make the best choice for your system and your budget. [ Krissy Mar 02, 2016 ] Staff