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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good, with obvious reservations
Before I bought the A5 I had spent far too much time reviewing other products, on various sites, and had almost made up my mind to buy other products on a number of occasions.In the end, having argued with myself for long enough, I went for the A5. I bought this fully aware that it would probably be a pain to install, that it was very expensive, that it was not as good as...
Published on 24 Jan. 2013 by JAD

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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully built BUT...
This is a beautiful thing but it is also a REAL pain. We have a BT Internet account ( as do MILLIONS of other people) but I have been told by B&W themselves that this speaker "doesn't get on too well with BT routers", so what keeps happening is the speaker is frequently losing connection with our internet, not great for a wireless speaker. So instead of the ease...
Published 23 months ago by Mr white


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully built BUT..., 20 July 2013
This review is from: Bowers & Wilkins A5 Wireless Music System B&W (Electronics)
This is a beautiful thing but it is also a REAL pain. We have a BT Internet account ( as do MILLIONS of other people) but I have been told by B&W themselves that this speaker "doesn't get on too well with BT routers", so what keeps happening is the speaker is frequently losing connection with our internet, not great for a wireless speaker. So instead of the ease of just effortlessly flicking your music straight through your speaker you find yourself having to get up, switch your speaker off (via the button on it) to reset it and mess around until in works again.... Until the next time your router drops connection... Which with BT is quite frequently.

Yes I know you could argue that it's BT at fault but this speaker should be better sorted to deal with these potential issues, after all it is a WIRELESS speaker and LOADS of people use BT.

In fairness when it does work the sound quality is nice but that too is a bit dependant on where you are in relation to the speaker (as will all speakers I guess) and where you position it in our room. It seems to like being used next to walls or alcoves.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good, with obvious reservations, 24 Jan. 2013
By 
JAD "JAD" (East Yorkshire) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Bowers & Wilkins A5 Wireless Music System B&W (Electronics)
Before I bought the A5 I had spent far too much time reviewing other products, on various sites, and had almost made up my mind to buy other products on a number of occasions.In the end, having argued with myself for long enough, I went for the A5. I bought this fully aware that it would probably be a pain to install, that it was very expensive, that it was not as good as it's bigger siblings the Zeppelin and the A7, that I really should be buying a good quality micro system and running it off an airport express and above all that I would forever regret not buying a Zeppelin because they are just so cool.
Having said that I am really pleased with this little bit of kit. It was simplicity itself to install, having first down loaded the B&W installation App from itunes onto my Mac Mini, i simply followed instructions on the App. They worked instantly and were incredibly easy to follow. I operate the A5 with an Iphone5 and a mac mini via a Netgear router through my home wifi network. I have to say air tunes is incredibly responsive and the A5 easily keeps up, a small volume change on either the mac mini or the iphone results in an instantaneous response from the A5.
My A5 sits on the counter top in my kitchen in between the kettle and the tea and coffee jars and invariably has to compete with the washing machine, dishwasher, extractor fan, fan oven/grill and general kitchen hub bub. It is so small ( its face is smaller than a sheet of A4 paper) it is most unobtrusive yet is capable of easily handling its own against any background noise.
The sound from the A5 is impressive, with its small size it has a surprisingly good soundstage and lovely bass. It copes well with really complex layers of sound (such as My Bloody Valentine or The Joy Formidable) and is a step up again at dealing with "acoustic" or less complicated music (such as Nick Drake or Agnes Obel). However it really shines when dealing with the more traditional sounding bands: The Stone Roses,The Smiths, The Rolling Stones etc. It is the eager way the unit deals with the punch and depth depth of these recordings whilst being abel to keep the sound of each instrument distinct from the others that made me fall in love with the A5.
It is not as cool as the Zeppelin, but the Zeppelin is much too big and even more expensive. It is not as good as an equivalently priced Micro system from Richer Sounds etc , but it is much smaller and much cooler and only has one cable (power) and the sound really is excellent. I am very glad I stopped arguing with myself and decided to have an A5.
Two notes of caution however: 1, it requires a really strong wifi signal, otherwise it drops out and 2, it requires a decent running in period to sound at its best. Like all top quality speakers its sound should not be judged until it has been played for a good 30 hours or so to bed in.
Also having heard the Bose kit, which is of similar price, the A5 is better as it retains its quality at really low volumes.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply mindblowing, 14 May 2013
This review is from: Bowers & Wilkins A5 Wireless Music System B&W (Electronics)
Do not be fooled by the size of this until. This will fill a large room with music. The sound quality is fantastic. It's very cool looking and will fit into any modern home. Setting up this device is simple with the app. It took me 2 minutes using my i pad. I own the Zeppelin air that is more time consuming to set up. The sound from the a5 seems to be louder than the zeppelin if you play them together on the same volume setting. I would say you do need to have good wi fi. I have 100meg speed. So I have no problems at all. I can play both the zeppelin and the a5 together using mac book pro. A multi room system. The a5 and a7 are much more improved for wifi use than the zeppelin. I was surprised how good the a5 is if you plug in an I pod classic into the back. You can still use the a5 by doing this and get good results.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb audio and build quality... A+, 16 Dec. 2013
By 
JT (Worldwide!) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Bowers & Wilkins A5 Wireless Music System B&W (Electronics)
I had done extensive research on a number of Airplay speakers from Sonos, Bose, B&W and others and ended up deciding on a Bowers & Wilkins A5 and A7 for my house - mainly to stream music through Airplay to both at the same time.

After an initial and very easy setup on my iPhone (which then also automatically setup on my PC and iPad) I had a little trouble in picking the A7 up through wifi (the A5 was fine). After searching on the internet I discovered problems with Airplay devices can occur due to the router settings (so if you have problems check if your router is "n" and "g" compatible and also firewall settings etc), however once that was solved I was able to be fully blown away by the audio quality of these devices.

I had already heard them in a busy shop but once they had the acoustics of my rooms at home they sounded ten times better still. I used to have Bose Soundocks but in all honesty these eat those for breakfast!

The build quality is just as good as the audio quality and personally I really like the design as they look inconspicuous yet stylish.

The balance of bass, middle and treble is perfect. Very deep bass (especially the A7) pounds the airways with crystal clear trebles and everything in between. To say I am impressed is an understatement and considering the size of these devices I think B&W should be commended on the quality they provide.

Of course the A5 and A7 are not cheap but I believe they are well worth the money. My only negative other than the price is that there is no instruction manual included in the box, however this can be downloaded in pdf format from their website so it's no big deal.

To get the best quality sound from any device, you should use high bit rate mp3's. The best is 320kb and are CD quality. Most tunes you download from iTunes etc are lower quality so if you can burn your CD's to your PC and change the burn settings to 320Kb. This will ensure you get the most from your Bowers & Wilkins. Low quality mp3's will still sound ok but if you're spending good money on devices like these you owe it to yourself to get the most out of them!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply WOW, 1 Jan. 2013
This review is from: Bowers & Wilkins A5 Wireless Music System B&W (Electronics)
I have just bought the Bowers & Wilkins A5 speaker and it has blown my mind. I was about to by the Bose Sound Link Airplay but once I heard the A5 it was a simply decision, the sound difference was incredible. Added is the fact that the A5 is sleek and stylish compared to other products in the market. I have owned the speaker for a week and already my friends are planning to purchase their own after listening to mine.

I found the Airplay setup super easy once I downloaded the Bowers & Wilkins Setup app, took me 2 minutes to complete. The Airplay connection to my iPhone is very consistant and I am able to connect from anywhere within my 2 story house.

If you are in the market for an Airplay speaker then you have found the best for its size in the market, 5***** from me.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great style, superb sound and easy setup., 23 Mar. 2013
By 
A. Davis (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Bowers & Wilkins A5 Wireless Music System B&W (Electronics)
I got this to replace my broken Bose Soundock and wanted something that supported AirPlay.

The A5 was a breeze to setup, and app on my iPad had it configured and ready to use in just a few minutes.
Connecting to it from an iPad, iPod or iPhone is simple and connections were made in a few seconds.
The sound is superb and has good detail, volume is more than I will need.
I have listened to a wide range of music and also used it to listen to TV and film, and I have always been pleased with the results.
After 2 months of use I am very pleased I chose this model.

I would definitely recommend this wireless speaker, it's not cheap but it is very good.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning, 20 Jun. 2013
By 
C. S. Redford (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Bowers & Wilkins A5 Wireless Music System B&W (Electronics)
I was lucky enough to receive the A5 as a 40th Birthday gift. I had been umming and aahing for quite a long time as to which wireless speakers would best suit, to the point I stopped looking (hence the gift I guess!). The sound is amazing - I listen to a wide range of genres and all were flawless...... I wish I could do into a diatribe about bass/treble levels & vocal clarity, but thats not really how I listen to music. In very simple terms this is a great speaker, the sound is crisp, the set-up easy and there is never any connection issues..... Great piece of kit, worth the money - its up to you!
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tremendous!!!, 12 Dec. 2012
This review is from: Bowers & Wilkins A5 Wireless Music System B&W (Electronics)
I was recently in the market to update my Bose SoundDock. After doing some research on the net I read a lot about wireless speakers. As I am an Apple fan and have a variety of Apple products I often look on the Apple forums for advice and it was clear that the majority of people were recommending AirPlay products.

The AirPlay market is a minefield as there are dozens of speakers out there. I have a friend who has a B&W Zeppelin which sounds amazing so I decided to take a look and see what they had to offer.

The A5 seemed like a perfect match for me as I needed something small enough to be placed on a coffee table but I didn't want to compromise on sound quality. After seeing a lot of positive reviews on the A5 I decided to take a punt and purchase one.

The gamble paid off! I'm really impressed with this speaker. Setting the speaker up was a doddle. I downloaded the B&W AirPlay setup App on to my iPhone and followed the prompts on screen, I had the speaker setup wirelessly in a matter of minutes. Streaming is so easy, you simply press your music icon, select a track then hit the little AirPlay icon and away you go. The sound quality is the thing that impressed me the most. There is so much clarity and detail, far more than I ever got from my Bose. I can hear things in my music that I never knew existed in the past. The bass reproduction is also fantastic and not over exaggerated like a lot of systems I have listened to.

My dad has also recently just purchased his own A5 as he was so impressed with mine.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great sound. No use for Airplay., 25 Aug. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Bowers & Wilkins A5 Wireless Music System B&W (Electronics)
In our house, we also have a B&W A7, a very high end streaming separates system and a UE Boom. I also had a Sonos system for about 6 years, so I have quite a bit of experience to compare with. Of the lot, this is the one I am least satisfied with, and when you see what a UE Boom is, that should surprise you.

The purpose I bought this for was to play the audio from iPad video while avoiding wires. It was not very good at that for two reasons:
1. Wifi range for these seems to be way below all the other devices I have, as it is not wireless-N. I was getting dropouts.
2. The Airplay latency is intolerable. Lip sync is way out. Even worse than with Sonos (which is why I switched from Sonos to Airplay/AppleTV and Bluetooth).
The UE Boom, while nowhere near the sound quality of B&W, actually works because it is Bluetooth.

I now have it set up in another room where it has an analogue feed from a cheap DAC with the optical out from an AppleTV. The network/Airplay on it is not set up at all. The sound quality is not quite as good as using Airplay and the onboard DAC, but it works, and I don't have mode issues switching between line-in for TV and Airplay for Audio. Just so you know, the unit will switch on automatically and switch to Airplay automatically, but if Airplay has been selected, it can't auto sense the line-in. In other words, it gets stuck on Airplay, and you have to push a control manually.

So with it used as a dumb active speaker, I am very happy with it. The audio quality and bass is excellent. Not as good as the A7, but still excellent. But I have no use for the networking "feature".
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars B&W A5, 18 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Bowers & Wilkins A5 Wireless Music System B&W (Electronics)
This is a great little product from B&W. I recently bought an iPhone5, which unfortunately made my Klipsch speaker dock redundant, and so i had been on the look out for a new Airplay speaker which would allow me to wirelessly stream my music from my iPhone to the new device. I read a several reviews on the A5, compared the A5 to the A7 in John Lewis (the A7 is too expensive and large for my requirements) and went for the A5. Setting it up was a piece of cake, the instructions that came with the A5 made it all very straight forward and easy. Switching between the sound coming from the device or through the A5 is also very easy to do. The A5 looks fantastic, with a very high quality look and build. The sound does not disappoint. At all. So rich and clear with great bass. It fills my 13 feet by 10 feet kitchen easily with sound, with a quality that does not disappoint. So I'm very happy with my purchase (thought I don't think my neighbour in the flat below would completely agree with this statement :)
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Bowers & Wilkins A5 Wireless Music System B&W
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