NEWS: Bowers & Wilkins announces Formation Suite wireless system

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Speakers' started by Weetabix, Apr 22, 2019.


    1. Weetabix

      Weetabix
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      Hey guys,

      This looks very interesting....

      The just-launched Formation Suite by Bowers & Wilkins is setting a new standard in wireless sound.
       
      Last edited by a moderator: May 20, 2019
    2. Arcam_boy

      Arcam_boy
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      Definitely going to get a demo of these when there out!

      Lot of money but they tick nearly all the right boxes for me!!
       
    3. Flecky81

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      How do you reckon they will work as a home cinema package? I heard the sound bar can do optical out, how would that connect to a 4K Blu-Ray player? Cheers.
       
    4. Andy Bassett

      Andy Bassett
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    5. Flecky81

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    6. BlairH

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      There is none. A massive oversight in my view, as it’s a step back from their old Panorama 2 in this regard. It’s basically the old Sonos Playbar.
       
    7. meep

      meep
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      Yet another proprietary protocol engendering closed systems. When will this nonsense end and a reliable, robust, interoperable standard is implemented across brands?
       
    8. barwell1992

      barwell1992
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      Given the denon HEOS range works with almost every streaming service known to man not just Spotify, not to mention heos can handle 24/192 and can also integrate with Alexa’s eco system I think the B&O stuff will need to sound really really special to justify the price.
       
    9. scoc

      scoc
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      I know taste is a personal thing but that design of the active standmount is ugly. It’s clear what they’ve tried to do by making a modern stylish flavour of the B&W 805D3 ...but in my view they really failed.

      Now on the software side they were smart to support Roon out of the box so you can avoid their app when preferred.
       
    10. pressure

      pressure
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      Could be a very interesting new class of product, especially if it ever gets built in room correction ...
       
    11. Dunners

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      They aren't supporting Roon out of the box...
      They are simply Roon end points - meaning they will turn up as available speakers when you use the Roon software. Remember, this isn't special to B&W, any product with Airplay, Airplay 2 or Google Cast audio is a Roon end-point capable product.
      Effectively they have no streaming via their app, they just have Spotify Connect, Bluetooth and Airplay 2... adding streaming services appears to be their plan for the future, until then purchasers need to be aware that they won't be getting much in the way of 'special sauce', just B&W speakers and a new mesh network.

      The mesh network is the real piece of interesting tech, how well it works is going to be the making or breaking of the product. I guess this is where B&W will have put a majority of their resources during development.
       
    12. scoc

      scoc
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      Being a Roon end point (without relying on Airplay) makes them Roon-Ready out of the box. Like the Kef LS wireless.
       
    13. Sandyb01

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      Indeed, the Roon website shows the Formation products to be Roon ready network players. I believe this means a Roon Server / core will stream to it using RAAT (the Roon streaming protocol). That is different from the server streaming to an Airplay speaker, which it will be able to do too I guess (?).
       
    14. Mister_Tad

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      I'm not sure it will be able to use Roon->Airplay on them, not that you would want to.

      Bluesound devices for instance, appear as available only for RAAT, and not with the other Airplay devices as well.

      On the other hand, with Sonos devices that support airplay are available for either Sonos native, or Airplay.
       
    15. Mallardo

      Mallardo
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      What is the fig roll-off of that hi tech biscuit barrel?
       
    16. Phil Hinton

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      Had a demo of all of them today and was very impressed. Obviously manufacturer based demos, but looking forward to getting these in to test further and it is interesting that this is just the first wave of product.
       
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    17. Phil Hinton

      Phil Hinton
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      Video with Andy Kerr from B&W coming very soon and we cover lots of potential questions you might have.
       
    18. Phil Hinton

      Phil Hinton
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    19. Flecky81

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      Be in the next generation of products! So they want you to buy this and then upgrade to a different setup in the future to get the real deal - don’t think so! I am sticking to wired.
       
    20. Flecky81

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      You can buy them here now at Sevenoaks:
      Sevenoaks Sound and Vision
      I suppose the 2 speakers still interest me but at £4200 including stands it’s a no go I think I hope but you never tho. I can’t see it being any better than what I already have and the flexibility of what I have.
       
    21. KenM10759

      KenM10759
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      For the price of that stuff, and in consideration of the rapid expansion of high internet bandwidth (at least here in the US), I can't fathom this 24/96 limitation. Everything they compete with does at least 24/192, and Qobuz is streaming at that rate.

      It may be fugly and incapable, but at least it's expensive as hell. That should keep plenty of it out of the marketplace. :D
       

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