B&W Zeppelin Has Landed

Discussion in 'Headphones, Earphones & Portable Music' started by Crustyloafer, Jan 24, 2008.

  1. Crustyloafer

    Crustyloafer
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    It would now appear that most of the Hi-Fi dealers are receiving their first deliveries of the new B&W Zeppelin iPod Speakers, ours just landed yesterday.

    I thought it would be a good opportunity to start a new thread for specifically discussing this new product.

    For those that are not familiar with it, you can find all the info you need here at B&W's site:

    http://www.bowers-wilkins.com/display.aspx?infid=2466

    Here is an image to give you a taster too.

    [​IMG]

    First things first, it's £399 so those of you looking for a cheap and cheerful solution better look elsewhere.

    First Impressions: Packaging is excellent and very well designed with all the accessories in their own separate box inside the main box. Each accessory has its own little recessed section to sit in so that they don't all rattle about together. Build quality and aesthetics are also superb, although I think I would have preferred that the power indicator LED was on the thin central metal console near the volume controls.

    Soundwise, everything pretty good also, with reasonable stereo separation which is helped by the tweeters being located right at the two outermost points on the unit. Bass is good quality for the size being reasonably fast and tight, with the high frequency detail being the standout feature, very clear and crisp without sounding shouty or edgy.

    All in all, highly recommended and puts pretty much every other iPod speaker dock to shame in both the styling and sound quality stakes. This is going to sell very well indeed.
     
  2. Ed Selley

    Ed Selley
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    Do you get an aux in as well as the dock? Whilst its not really my thang, I've got a colleague who's interested.
     
  3. Crustyloafer

    Crustyloafer
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    Yes it has a 3.5mm jack input which will accept a standard analogue signal as well as a digital optical signal.
     
  4. wicker_man

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  5. Crustyloafer

    Crustyloafer
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    I would recommend you visit a smaller specialist dealer to listen to it. You are likely to get a much more effective demonstration and in a better environment to listen to it than a large department store.
     
  6. Autopilot

    Autopilot
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    Dont flame me, im not criticising your choice... But why spend so much money on an iPod dock? Does it still use the iPod's DAC?
     
  7. Crustyloafer

    Crustyloafer
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    Go and listen to it.

    Yes it does, that would be the same DAC that is made by Wolfson Microelectronics of Edinburgh who also happen make the DACs that go into all Arcam CD players. Different DACs true enough, but don't be so quite so quick to judge.
     
  8. Autopilot

    Autopilot
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    Blimey Mr Sensitive, i was just asking :rolleyes: I was only wondering in-case someone has managed to get a digital out from the iPod classic yet.

    I'm sure it sounds very good, not to my taste but it certainly looks well made and distinctive :)

    The faults with the iPod's sound quality are not directly related to the DAC anyway, it's the crammed in circuitry sounding it that people complain about. It's not Sony sound quality, but I'm quite happy with my iPod's though sound TBH (if a little flat).
     
  9. trailer

    trailer
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    Check out the Wadia base station.
     
  10. Crustyloafer

    Crustyloafer
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    Ha, you beat me to it. I am aware of that product also.
     
  11. stebbo

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    I am wondering why Apple havent produced a Dock with Digital out yet?
    They have had an good business opportunity here and have not taken it up. Which is strange for them as they are a very savvy company.
    :cool:
     
  12. John G

    John G
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    I bought the Zeppelin last week. I am amazed at the quality of the sound reproduction given that the source is just an iPod. I have found it sounds even better if you use the 'Bass reducer' feature in 'settings'. I would say it compares favourably with any 'midi' system I have heard in the past.
    Cheers, John
     
  13. matt3568

    matt3568
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  14. Ed Selley

    Ed Selley
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    The design is interesting and I have no doubt it will sound pretty good- big AAC files or LAME encoded MP3 can raise a few eyebrows amongst the sceptical.

    Only catch for me is that for the same money, I can buy a reasonable standalone dock and bolt it to this;
    [​IMG]
    The overall footprint is about the same and the build is going to be as good as the B&W. Under nearfield conditions it isn't just good for an "MP3/PC speaker"- its genuinely marvellous full stop.
     
  15. spl23

    spl23
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    The 6G iPods (the classic and nano) no longer use the Wolfson DAC - this decision has come in for a lot of stick, and there are those who allege that the replacement part does not sound as good. (Although the headphone amp in the 6G has a lower noise floor than on the 5G, so it's swings and roundabouts...) See http://homepage.mac.com/marc.heijligers/audio/ipod/comparison/measurements/measurements.html

    The Wadia dock is the first product that actually bypasses the iPod's DAC - on the 6G products, the same authentication chip system that broke non-Apple video output products has enabled a proper digital output via the dock. It relies, however, on having an authentication chip in the dock that enables the digital output, and Wadia are at present the only company to have the relevant chip.
     
  16. Crustyloafer

    Crustyloafer
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    Thanks for letting me know, I wasn't aware of this myself. Either way, the Zeppelin sounds pretty good as most of the owners on here have testified also.
     
  17. Falp

    Falp
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    Does the digital output of the Zeppelin work as the Wadia iTransport or the DLO Homedock HD?
    Perfect digital out? :)
     
  18. dun_buyin

    dun_buyin
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    It's digital in not out. The only output on this is an svideo and composite output to allow 4G and 5G ipods to output video or photos.
     
  19. Falp

    Falp
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    Sorry, so I was confused...:thumbsup:

    But that means that the Zeppelin has built in DACs...;)

    So for the iPOD music what DACs does it use? :confused:
     
  20. dun_buyin

    dun_buyin
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    Presumably it will be using the iPod dac. Note that the Zeppelin is not fully compatible with the new ipods (classic, touch, iphone and 3G nano) it will be fine with analogue sound from the dock connector with them but will not output video/photos. Don't be put off by that though as it sounds fantastic.
     
  21. Falp

    Falp
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    Wasn't the Zeppelin the first Ipod accessory with an Authentication Chip?:confused:
     
  22. trailer

    trailer
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    That was the Wadia wasn't it?
     
  23. dun_buyin

    dun_buyin
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    I would have thought that if it had the authentication chip it would have also have had component video out rather than svideo and composite. In that respect it is the same as the Arcam rDock that you were asking about on the Arcam owners forum.

    I would have thought that taking a digital out for the iPod would only be of real use if you were using a separate dock and connecting that to a full hi-fi system, the zeppelin is just an integrated speaker system and as such the small improvement in sound quality that could have been had probably isn't worth worrying about.

    For a system in the bedroom/study/kitchen this is a fantastic piece of kit though. Sounds excellent and is very well made. Well worth £120 more than the Bose sounddock.
     
  24. mpurves

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    I had to turn my Zeppelin bass settings down to -3 to stop the walls from shaking! Highly impressed and money well spent for me.
     
  25. Type-r

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    Hi,

    Just wondered if anyone listened to tried or even bought the KEF's Picoforte 1 or 3.

    Would be interested to see how it weights up.

    Base model around 250, with version 3 around 400'ish

    Opinions would be very much appreciated

    Cheers
     
  26. Kerfuffle666

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    I bought one yesterday. Saw it, wanted it, got it.

    Carrying it out of the Apple store in Manchester, the weight is surprising - this is no lightweight bit of an accessory.

    The remote IS a little sparse, but spending a few minutes on iTunes sorting out what you want to listen to that day/night will overcome the lack of options.

    The sound is awesome, and not just for it's size. Totally filled the room in vivid, rich sound - and could put some more traditional systems to shame. It also looks beautiful... let's face it, most AV equipment is bloody ugly as sin compared to this!

    If you can afford it, and you carry your music around in an iPod, buy it.
     
  27. Type-r

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    had mine delivered on Saturady - Wonderful piece of kit, rich and deep sound

    If you can afford one you won't regret it ever - throw away your cd players/ mini systems !!

    Looks fantastic too
     
  28. PJTX100

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    Alpine have.
     
  29. sofasurfer

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    It's my birthday today and the other half has bought me one of these. I have just set it up and very very impressed with it. It sounds fantastic providing you have encoded your mp3s at a decent rate. I hate to think what itunes downloads sound on it.

    The packaging is a bit special too. The whole thing just reeks class.

    I think I might be busy all day playing about with this :thumbsup:
     
  30. Socrates

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    Now thats what you call a GF/Wife:clap:
     

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