• 1.0 out of 5 stars

    if only I'd read the reviews

    • Written by from wotton-under-edge

    If only I'd read the reviews before I spent £700+ on the A7. I so much wanted it to work. It sounds great... yes we all know that, but it just fails to stay connected. 2 years or so I've had it now. It works wonderfully for a week or two then... gone. drops off the network, won't reset, nothing to do.. then miraculously there it is again. talk about frustration!!! Every Time I got the box out to return it it started working again... I know.. that sounds stupid. Please Mr B+W do something to stop us regretting our major cash outlays or take this product off the market.

    1 of 1 people found this useful

  • 1.0 out of 5 stars

    sound is amazing, connectivity is inexcusable

    • Written by from Palm Beach Gardens

    I'm joining the chorus here. Gorgeous sound until it drops out and the speaker needs a hard reset.

    The speaker is not far from the AirPort, nor are the MacBook and iPhone I've used to play music. I've never had problems with any other wifi or AirPlay devices but this one just won't work consistently. The longest I've gone before a total ker-splat is maybe four songs.

    Help! Isn't there some kind of firmware update that can solve this? I'm obviously not the only one having this problem.

    1 of 1 people found this useful

  • 1.0 out of 5 stars

    Great sound when it works

    • Written by from Toronto

    Constant source of frustration. I have spent hours and hours trying to get this speaker to work consistently but it continues to drop signals and require hard resets. I have tries everything, complete waste of money

    6 of 7 people found this useful

  • 2.0 out of 5 stars

    impossible to connect

    • Written by from San Diego

    I just bought this today so take my reivew with the appropriate grains of salt. I have connected and reconnected this thing to airplay over and over again for about 3 hours. the one time it stayed connected, I heard the best portable speaker ever. sounds great, I just can't get it to stay connected, and I have perfectly fine internet that gets up to 30mb.

    I haven't given up on it yet, but I am understanding these other reviews...

    6 of 7 people found this useful

  • 5.0 out of 5 stars

    Great big sound and sophisticated looks

    • Written by from Brooklyn

    After buying this 2 years ago I haven't a bad word to say about the, albeit, expensive, but worth it, A7 speaker. While I bought it to augment my "main stereo", *it* soon became "my main" stereo because it sounds better than my Onkyo (which I love BTW) and I've never had an issue streaming to it. Also, everyone who hears it loves it, without any prompting from me. If you have the money, you couldn't do better than the A7.

    0 of 1 people found this useful

  • 2.0 out of 5 stars

    Your connection will be dropped. No matter what you do.

    • Written by from Calgary

    No doubt about the exceptional sound quality of this speaker.
    High frequencies are crispy and bass is impecable.

    But, it's very frustrating listen to a song and get your connection dropped.
    Often the led goes blinking purple and we need to re-setup the Wi-fi, or, wait a long time until it works again.

    I work with IT and I didn't give up right of the bat. I troubleshooted it with all my heart to make worth my 800 bucks. Connected it to the wired network, cleaned up my iPhone, closed all applications, updated to the latest and greatest, even upgraded my Wifi to Airport Extreme, but even the six antennas in it didn't do the trick.

    It's a beautiful speaker, as long as you're wired.

    I'll give it two stars, for all the annoyance it caused me.

    10 of 10 people found this useful

  • 2.0 out of 5 stars

    The best letdown by AirPlay

    • Written by from Honley, Holmfirth

    The Bowers and Wilkins A7 is without doubt a 5 star product unsurpassed in terms of sound refinement and quality but its one great achilles heal is its reliance on AirPlay. Whether you choose wireless or ethernet connection makes no difference you will suffer the occasional dropout to a greater or lesser degree while ever AirPlay acts as the control. You may be able to live with that but I cannot. Apple's AirPlay is robust when coupled to its own AppleTV but it is anything but rock solid with the A7. The only guarantee that no dropout will ever occur would be to connect your Apple device with a Lightning to USB converter then USB to the A7 making a direct non wireless link - but that rather defeats the object of a wireless device. For those doubters out there having read all the reviews (like me) my wifi signal is very good and suffers no dropouts at all in any other situation, so after various patient scenarios in trying to get AirPlay to play ball without issues (dlan adaptor, even a new router) I reluctantly had to return the A7 even though it wasn't faulty. A shame. Maybe B&W are working on an alternative approach to reliable hq streaming without using AirPlay - I hope they are.

    21 of 22 people found this useful

  • 5.0 out of 5 stars

    A7 USB in Connects Directly iPad USB out

    • Written by from Glen Gardner

    I just discovered that My iPad air connects directly to my B&W A7 Via USB. I use the apple Lightning to USB adapter ( part of the camera connection Kit) This way you get much better sound than going in aux since it goes in digitally and uses the internal D/A convertors. The sound is phenomenal but I guess most of the folks are busy trying to connect this system to bad wifi networks and aren't to bright

    I have no problems with wifi connectivity. it is average performance and does drop out once in a while but no more or less then my apple tv or airport mini airplay.

    The important thing of a speaker is the sound and this is the most tonally accurate and pleasing I have heard in this size. This is comparing it to the Bose sound touch 30, Sonos and some others in the price range. The Bose sound touch 30 was very good too and has some advantages in wifi over this one, though the sound was like watching a TV where the color, contrast sharpness were tuned up all the way lacking in Midrange.

    0 of 2 people found this useful

  • 5.0 out of 5 stars

    Fantastic Quality and sound

    • Written by from Birmingham

    This is one fantastic product, supper quality and unbelievable base and clarity from such a small box. If you want the flexibility of having this unit positioned in various places around the house, the airplay is a great option. I have a robust wifi system and the whole setup was straight forward. I get the odd dropout or break in a sound for a second but soon comes back. I've read other people have had real issues with airplay but it is dependent on a good wifi signal. Wifi will never be 100% reliable and is always susceptible to interference and dropout. Depends what's important to you, you'll never beat a piece of wire for reliability but it has it's limitations.

    So if you want a great sound and the freedom to utilise the device all over the house, then this is ideal. If you want 100% uninterrupted music then you need to invest in some wire. The most important thing is, they sound fantastic and would recommend one if you have the cash

    cheers

    Chris

    1 of 3 people found this useful

  • 5.0 out of 5 stars

    Music is not where you Compromise

    • Written by from Surrey

    I am sure that if you are at this level of your research for a music system ,your must be a music lover.If you really love Music then do yourself a favour. Get A7. No doubt it is expensive but do not compromise with Music. Voice quality is so rich it can make you move automatically. No doubt streaming is an issue here but at the same time you are having some portability. Listening takes more energy than talking in that sense A7 is an energy saving device as well. I felt relaxed even after long music listenings.

    3 of 5 people found this useful

  • 1.0 out of 5 stars

    Wifi updates that never works!

    • Written by from West Hollywood

    Very disappointed with this product!

    10 of 38 people found this useful

  • 4.0 out of 5 stars

    Sound Quality is Great, Airplay is Not

    • Written by from Brooklyn

    I have 3 of these throughout my home. I started off setting them up wirelessly, through Airplay. Sound quality is incredible for the size and the ability to place them freely. However, the overarching problem is that the wireless connection is unreliable. You'll see many complain that they cut out, lose their connection frequently, or have lags in the ability to control them. They are all true and you'll find yourself getting annoyed and the sound quality will matter less and less.

    The B & W machines probably don't have a great wi-fi antenna, but I don't know technically what they use. What I do know is that I set them up as passive speakers by plugging them in either via ethernet cable directly to my router or to Airport Expresses via optical mini, and this is MUCH more reliable. Basically use the Airports you have to manage the data portion and just use them for the amazing speakers they are. If you want a great speaker that is beautiful then these are for you. But be prepared to be disappointed with the wireless aspect and plan accordingly. Spending $800 bucks is a lot for a speaker; you may as well put up the extra $100 for the airport express and $8 for the cable so you aren't completely let down.

    18 of 19 people found this useful

  • 4.0 out of 5 stars

    Wonderful

    • Written by from Toronto

    I purchased the A5 and A7 and played them side by side, the same song, to compare.

    The A7 did have a richer sound (quite reasonable as it is quite larger and heavier) – I returned the A5. Hey, I figured if I’m going to splurge on a great unit I may as well go all the way.

    The setup was relatively painless. The app didn’t seem to realize the setup was finished and froze, but once the purple light on the unit was no longer flashing, I shut off the crashed app and the A7 was setup and played.

    Luckily I have not had the serious connection problems that others have reported. It’s not perfect – some dropouts - but not enough to regret my purchase.

    The sound is beautiful. Songs that I know well reveal details lost on my previous speakers. The only thing missing is stereo separation, but of course it’s a single unit, not two speakers in opposite corners of my room.

    The generous amount of free music to download is an unexpected present from the trial membership to the Society of Sound.

    Purchasing the A7 was a fine decision.

    2 of 2 people found this useful

  • 4.0 out of 5 stars

    Finally a great speaker

    • Written by from New York

    I have not been lucky with B&W speakers. Last year I bought the Zeppelin Air. Sound is really great but the connectivity drops out way to often. Having that experience I still decided to buy an A7 for our library because I really like the good sound. A7 we bought was remarkebly easy to set up but the sound was terrible - the bass speaker indisde was not functioning. After exchanging it for a new A7 from the store I can truely say this one is great. Have not had a single connectivity issue and the sound is amazing.

    3 of 4 people found this useful

  • 2.0 out of 5 stars

    Awesome sound, terrible wireless connectivity

    • Written by from Toronto

    The A7 sounds better than any sound system I've ever owned. Period. However the wireless connectivity is very unstable and is a real pain. To try and address the problem I even purchased an Apple AirPort Extreme, which is an amazing router, but the A7 still drops the wireless connection atleast once a week. So frustrating! Certainly you can hardwire it to an iPod, but that kind of defeats the purpose of having Airplay and multiple devices. I'd think twice about purchasing an A7 if you plan to use it wirelessly.

    13 of 14 people found this useful

  • 1.0 out of 5 stars

    Garbage product!!

    • Written by from New York

    This is is most amazing sound, piece of garbage money can buy. It sounds great, if it decides to work. 9 times out of 10, it doesn't work. At first, I thought it was my Apple router and so I went and bought a newer router, but no difference.
    As such, I then thought I had a defective A7 so I returned it and came home with another brand new one.
    Still worthless. It's a shame Apple sells this piece of trash because it clearly doesn't measure up to the B&W reputation, so it's very perplexing.
    Again, do not buy garbage...even if it's at a 90% discount because it is still garbage. I paid full price at the Apple store, however, Money really not the issue here, so long as I could get the B&W sound. Unfortunately, not available for this particular piece of junk called A7.

    18 of 27 people found this useful

  • 4.0 out of 5 stars

    Exceeded my expectations

    • Written by from Santa Monica

    Great system. Worth the price.
    + Handles deep bass from my hip hop without becoming muddy.
    + Articulates the bass from my classical selections
    + Clear highs
    + Full, warm sound.
    + No ear fatigue

    Don't expect the spatiality of separates.

    4 of 4 people found this useful

  • 5.0 out of 5 stars

    LOVE IT!!

    • Written by from Ottawa

    Super easy to set up with Airplay. I live in a two bedroom brownstone walkup, and if i wanted, the whole building could hear it. But unlike other speakers, it sounds amazing even at lower volumes (which is important); all the instruments and voices coming through as though live. There is more than one speaker in the thing - I don't remember the exact number.

    The whole range of sounds is soooo crisp and accurate from each guitar to the tiniest bell; you don't lose anything through these speakers. I can move it from room to room and it picks up the signal again in seconds.

    I shopped around for the right speaker(s) to use and after having listened to others and finally this one, I just had to spend the bucks on this one because it really is the next best thing to being next to the music as it was recorded in the studio. Their website explains more. Plus it's a beautiful thing that takes up surprisingly little room considering the huge amount of pristine sound that it gives. I would definitely say this thing is worth the money!!

    5 of 5 people found this useful

  • 5.0 out of 5 stars

    Bowers Wilkins a7

    • Written by from Cardiff

    Purchased my a7 yesterday an easy set up had no problems whatsoever sound is quality good base crisp highs if you closed your eyes you would think the speakers were seperate Tried the bose soundtouch 30 not a patch on the a7 if your thinking about buying one don't hesitate you won't be disappointed

    6 of 6 people found this useful

  • 2.0 out of 5 stars

    Needs Volume Control

    • Written by from Winnetka

    I recently purchased the A7 to use as my Airplay speakers for the AppleTV. Recently, the AppleTV added the ability to specify AirPlay speakers. The problem is it is not very easy to change volume. (It can only be done with the IR remote for AppleTV, and then only by pausing and adjusting. Very awkward.)

    Other AirPlay speaker manufactures--I won't mention names--have fixed this by adding this volume controls to their respective Apps.

    This seems like an essential feature for the A7. B&W should develop an App to replace their IR remote control, thereby providing a true network experience.

    As I purchased my A7 at the Apple Store, I have two weeks to decide to return the A7 and buy another AirPlay speaker. I really like the sound, but without volume control for AppleTV, it's not enough.

    I give five stars to the A7 sound quality, but 0 stars to the B&W App.

    6 of 10 people found this useful