When the new 700 series debuted a few years ago, we were excited to say the least. The speakers were a massive upgrade and a breath of fresh air in a landscape with far too many speakers to choose from. Now the third generation is here, and the changes are so extensive that it’s actually a new 700 series, not just an upgrade.
The cabinets have become slimmer and with a curved front panel with better dispersion characteristics. The drivers are also new, and in this the 700 Series is now closer to the flagship 800 Series than ever before.
Bowers & Wilkins 700 Series
The smallest model is the 707 S3, and along with the 706 S3, 704 S3 and HTM72 S3 are among the newcomers to the 700 Series that don’t get the new tweeter tube on top of the cabinet. The floorstanding 702 S3, 703 S3, compact 705 S3 and centre speaker HTM71 S3, all get the new tweeter tube.
The tweeter is mounted in an even longer tube milled from a single piece of aluminium to attenuate distortion even further, with better decoupling from the cabinet. The unit itself is the same as we know from before with a carbon diaphragm, just with new vented voice coils and better magnets – and an upper cut-off frequency of 47,000 Hz.
The tweeter in the new 707 S3, 706 S3, 704 S3, and the HTM72 S3 centre speaker, have also received the same mechanical improvements.
The 700 Series midrange speaker features the same surrounds – Biomimetic Suspension – that Bowers & Wilkins uses in the recently launched 800 Series. The unit has the same FST surround around the grey Continuum composite cone that we know from the 801 D4, among others.
The smaller models with combined woofer and midrange have also been given new driver with new surrounds and an improved chassis. The woofers use Bowers & Wilkins Aerofoil Profile cones, made as a variable-profile sandwich.
Of other changes to the 700 Series we find new binding posts on the back; not unlike those used by the 800 Series; more efficient bass reflex ports, and the 702 S3 Series flagship has moved the bass port from the back to the bottom. Where you’ll also find a new and more stable platform with new M10 spikes and adjustable feet.
The 700 series also gets a new cabinet colour called ‘mocha’, and will also be available in black and white. Rosewood is reserved for the Asian market.
The speakers are available now.