B&W A5 review | What Hi-Fi?

We came to the B&W A5 with prime hopes: finally we’re no strangers to playing what B&W does with regards to AirPlay audio system. After piling high praise at the Zeppelin Air in 2011, the minimalist A7 was once on the receiving end of a five-star review in our December 2012 issue, so we have been expecting just right things from the smaller, more cost effective A5

Out of the field, it seems similar to a miniature A7: a bit of of a departure from the attention-grabbing glance of the Zeppelin range, however the swish, unassuming design will supplement maximum rooms, and blend in moderately than stand out – no longer a bad thing at all.

B&W A5 review: set-up

With no dock connector interrupting its sleek lines, the A5 is dependent upon Apple’s wi-fi AirPlay generation to play song, even though there is a 3.5mm mini jack on the back to arduous cord the analogue output from a device, should you need it.

Luckily, putting in place AirPlay together with your iOS instrument is inconspicuous thanks to the free B&W AirPlay Setup app.

Once downloaded, it walks you thru steps that get you streaming your track in mins. AirPlay is notoriously fiddly to get running, so this is no mean feat, and something we wish all producers would consider as sparsely.

B&W A5 review: sound high quality

Intended for smaller rooms than its bigger brother, the A5 is an impressively powerful dock for its dimension, able to kicking out rich, detailed audio that’s easiest for a bedroom or kitchen.

It’s now not as expansive because the B&W A7, so won’t fill better rooms as convincingly, but for £three hundred less, that’s something we'd be expecting.

Listening to Gotye’s Somebody That I Used To Know, the A5 draws out the haunting vocal with beautiful readability, whilst the bass guitar punches manfully.

It tends to be a bit of vibrant for our tastes, and rather unforgiving of less-than-ideal recordings, however taking part in with EQ on our iPod touch goes a protracted method to softening it up (at the expense of somewhat transparency).

B&W A5 review: verdict

Put the A5 in an actual home environment and it is going to shine.

There are few AirPlay docks at this worth that can challenge it in design and function – B&W has any other celebrity on its arms.

MORE: Best AirPlay speakers to buy in 2014

See all our dock system Best Buys

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