B&W 704 S2 vs other speakers.

Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
Here’s an subjective review about the B&W 704S2 floor standing speakers. First the speakers in red rosewood finish is absolutely gorgeous! The sound here it goes. I am no B&W fan per say. Still if the speakers are well designed it doesn’t matter if it’s KEF, B&W etc. Listed to the B&W 704 S2 before but they didn’t impress then. Hegel amp was used then. Not the best match. Today at the store NAD M10 were used. Source was Tidal MQA.

First sound impression is not as forward sounding as the 606/607 stand mounted speakers, much more musical sounding. The 603 floor standing speakers are fine speakers but compared to the 704 S2, this have more air in sound. The bass response is quite deep. But not as deep as other speakers with larger cabinets. But the bass is super precise. Not the most dynamic speakers you’ll hear though. They lack some rhythm, this is more finesse sounding speakers. Don’t get me wrong they can rock, just not good enough.

The midrange is where the magic happens. Voices are incredibly nuanced, not so nasal. It can be at times, making voices sound off. But surprisingly easy to listen to. But in the end the midrange can become too sterile. Great for jazz, acoustic but so much for rock, pop. Whether this is because of the Nad, the store demo room is not easy to tell. Treble is quite detailed, but it’s bit bright at times. The treble is not super upfront, but cymbals can sound strange at times. The 603 are more rolled of in the treble.

After listing to this speakers for awhile at the shop the big question is this speakers I can live with? Difficult to say. I need to try them in my listing room. I have good feeling the Marantz PM8006 might sound better then Nad M10. I’d say if you are after airy speakers which lets you pin point every instrument in the mix then this speakers are perfect for you! Compared to Dali Oberon 5, the Oberon 5 is fuller soundIng from the bass, treble. Fuller voices, although the midrange lacks some air. The bass response on the Oberon 5 goes deeper. So it’s not always the more expensive speakers which are the best. Much more dynamic too. Last up we’re the Dali Opticon 6 MK2. This are large floor standing speakers compared to the other speakers mentioned. The Opticon 6 MK2 is lot more refined then the Oberon 5. Not exactly the same as 704 S2 but different. Overall the Option 6MK2 have the classic Dali sound. Very wide sound, open full midrange, great bass slam. Bass is deeper then both Oberon 5, 704S2. Again the Dali’s are more dynamic. B&W puts the band, vocalist in front of you. Dali little more back in concert hall.

Is the 704 S2 bad speakers? No they are not. Are they better then the Oberon 5? It depends what you are after. For me they fall short, since they are much more expensive speakers then the Oberon 5. The Oberon 5 can hold its own against the 704 S2. For me its rather the Opticon 6 MK2. But they are too large for my room. I well perhaps have the opportunity to borrow the 704 S2 this weekend, perhaps this tread we’ll be updated then. Conclusion perhaps I’ve been to naive about B&W. They are quality brand, but some speakers from B&W sound to forward.

Update. Listed to the B&W 704 S2 again today. Most likely is going to borrow them this weekend. Does anyone own this speakers? Thanks.
 
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Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
Went back to the shop and listed to 704 S2 again. I believe I’ll skip them for now and just keep the Oberon 5 speakers. I have to consider It throughly.

Still speakers are where you’ll hear the biggest difference. I’d love to own pair of Spendor speakers, unfortunately they are too expensive for me.

I also have my eye on QA speakers. Epically the 3050i or Concept 40.
 

acgingersnaps

Well-known Member
If you have a smaller room and want a floorstander, the Neat Motive SX2 is an excellent choice.
Super throughout the sound range and a really engaging listen. Cheaper than the 704 too.
 

Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
I found one Neat hifi dealer here in Norway. But! The SX2 cost around 1900 pounds here in Norway. The XS1 cost around 2400 pounds.

There’s so way I am going to spend so much money for speakers which were released in 2012.

The 704 S2 cost around the same as the XS1.

Why is Neat speakers so expensive? They are old speakers....
 

acgingersnaps

Well-known Member
I found one Neat hifi dealer here in Norway. But! The SX2 cost around 1900 pounds here in Norway. The XS1 cost around 2400 pounds.

There’s so way I am going to spend so much money for speakers which were released in 2012.

The 704 S2 cost around the same as the XS1.

Why is Neat speakers so expensive? They are old speakers....
Speaker tech hasn't changed that much in that time. I'd have a listen, if you can, before discounting. I l9ve their sound and they were only bought last year.
 

svx94

Novice Member
The 704 S2 and Hegel H120 is a wonderful match for me. Don't know why do you think otherwise. As for the other speakers you mentioned, I won't be able to contribute. Let your ears pick the winner. I was comparing 704 with 705 and KEF R3...
 

TB Rich

Active Member
The 704 S2 and Hegel H120 is a wonderful match for me. Don't know why do you think otherwise. As for the other speakers you mentioned, I won't be able to contribute. Let your ears pick the winner. I was comparing 704 with 705 and KEF R3...
Absolutely, let your ears pick the winner.
This really shows how subjective Hifi is though (although of course room acoustics plays a very big part also), as I compared 702 S2 against KEF R5 and for me it wasn‘t a competition, B&W sounding edgy and borderline harsh.
 

ashenfie

Well-known Member
I think if you listen different amps and speakers and then only change the speakers your are going to be left wanting. I am in the Kef camp with R700 in the B&W vs Kef debate, unless you stick with the amp and can stretch to some Focal kanta which would take you to the next level, but budget is always the issue here.
 

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