The Bowers and Wilkins 800 series has always been a leading light in high end speaker manufacture. In this month’s blog we thought we would whet your appetite for a high quality stand mount loudspeaker and take a closer look at entry point of their flagship 800 series, the B&W 805D3.
Let’s get stuck into the nitty gritty of what makes these small but impressive stand mount speakers sing! As the world’s only diamond equipped stand mount loudspeaker the 805D3 is packed with cutting-edge technology. The 2 way vented box design delivers phenomenal performance. The diamond dome tweeter is encased in a solid aluminium body and just like the predecessors to the 805D3 it has that unmistakable look with the tweeter separated and situated on top of the cabinet. This separates it from the main cabinet allowing for a spacious and lifelike reproduction of the music.
The B&W 805D3 diamond dome tweeter is now complimented by the new Continuum cone bass midrange driver. Eight years down the line of research and we have a progression, or a “continuation” of the well known yellow woven Aramid Fibre drive unit found in the older 800 diamond series. The new Continuum cone delivers a pristine midrange and bass performance and the new technology has been designed to eliminate the break up behaviour that can really affect the response in this part of the frequency spectrum. We would like to elaborate more on the continuum technology but B&W are keeping their cards close to their chest on this one.
The revised cabinet for these small but impressive loudspeakers are described as a metal-reinforced Matrix. This structure provides incredible internal bracing ensuring that the sound we hear is produced by the drivers and not influenced by the cabinet. The cabinet construction consists of layers of wood ply with metal reinforcement. This construction teamed with the curve of the cabinet makes for an incredibly rigid platform for the bass mid-range driver to operate. The 805D3 cabinets are available in three finishes, gloss black, satin white and rosenut, which are featured in these pictures.
What do they sound like I hear you cry! Well, we have been getting to grips with the 805D3 since they arrived at Audio T Cardiff this summer. They definitely need a good amplifier to keep control of them. The combinations we most like is on the end of a Naim NAP300DR which offers plenty of grunt and a smooth but upfront presentation. However, the NAP250DR and NAP200DR have what it takes to keep them under control. The midrange frequency performance is stunning and you can kick back and listen to these loudspeakers all day long. At this level of speaker things can sometimes sound too clinical and the detailed presentation can lack musicality. The 805D3 does not have this problem. The mid range and treble performance is spatial, transparent and full of the accurate details we have come to expect from Bowers and Wilkins 800 diamond series.
Team the B&W 805D3 up with the FS-805 stand and you have the basis for a world leading stand mount loudspeaker. You have probably seen the recent release of the new Naim UNITI range, such as the ATOM, STAR and NOVA. Well, a demonstration of any of these streaming amplifiers is a must with the 805D3 before making your final decision on what to partner them with.
In their own words, "B&W have been dedicated to helping listeners get closer to the music they love for 51 years." All of the 800D3 series are designed and hand built in the Bowers & Wilkins factory in Worthing in the UK. Bowers & Wilkins have kindly invited us to their factory in January 2018 so we can bring you first hand information on the design and manufacture of the 800D3 series.
We will be showcasing the 800D3 range at an event in Cardiff in early 2018, so keep your ear to our blog for details of the date and location for this event.
Bowers & Wilkins loudspeakers are available at the following branches of Audio T:
Brentwood, Brighton, Bristol, Cardiff, Enfield, Manchester, Oxford, Portsmouth, Preston, Reading, Southampton, Swansea and Swindon. Bowers & Wilkins 800D3 series are only available from Audio T Cardiff.