B&W Evokes its Iconic Flagship in 700 Series Update

In the never-ending quest for sonic perfection, Bowers & Wilkins has concluded a three-year, top-to-bottom development program designed to elevate the performance of its five-year-old 700 Series of speakers. The improvements are rooted in concepts and technologies borrowed from the brand’s iconic 800 Series speakers and range from cabinet design and construction to a series of tweaks in acoustic and mechanical performance.

The series comprises eight models: the 702 S3 (shown), 703 S3, and 704 S3 floorstanding speakers, 705 S3, 706 S3, and 707 S3 stand-mount models, and two dedicated center-channel speakers, the HTM71 S3 (shown) and HTM72 S3 — all sporting a slimmer form factor and ranging in price from $1,500 to $7,000/pair for the top floorstander. In half of the models — the 702 and 703 towers, the 705 stand-mount model, and the HTM71 center speaker — the tweeter is housed in an external pod that echoes the look of the 800 Series Diamond speakers and the front baffle is gently curved to reduce diffraction.

The “tweeter-on-top” enclosure is still made from a single bock of aluminum but has been lengthened to reduce distortion and employs an upgraded two-point decoupling system designed to better isolate the tweeter assembly from the main cabinet.

Though the same carbon dome tweeter is used throughout the series, its performance has been refined with an improved vented voice coil and upgraded magnets. And, in models where the tweeter is mounted in the front baffle, it loads into an internal tube that seeks to achieve performance benefits akin to the top-mounted tweeter pod.

Even More Refinements
In another technical upgrade to the midrange drivers used in the 700 Series’ three-way models, Bowers & Wilkins has replaced the conventional fabric spider with the Biomimetic suspension scheme that debuted last year in the 800 Series Diamond. The goal? To reduce unwanted noise. Woofers across the series also use the latest generation of B&W’s Aerofoil Profile cone, which varies in thickness and uses a sandwich of materials to produce cleaner bass by lowering distortion.

While the crossover networks in the updated 700 Series continue to use Mundorf capacitors, they have been enhanced with multiple bypass capacitors and improved heatsinking. Connection terminals have also been upgraded with a new 800 Series-inspired layout that accommodates spade-terminated speaker cable.

To boost bass output, B&W has also increased the diameter of the Flowport on the back of each model; Flowport is B&W’s name for a port design that uses dimples to reduce friction in the air as it moves through the opening. In the top 702 S3 model, the port has been reoriented to fire from the bottom of the enclosure, which is elevated by an integrated plinth — a design trait borrowed from 800 Series Diamond models. Upgraded stainless-steel floor spikes are also included across the line.

With the updated 700 Series, B&W has introduced a stunning Mocha woodgrain finish alongside the existing gloss black and satin white options.

Here’s a quick rundown of the new models with pricing. Floorstanding models include the 702 S3 ($7,000/pair), 703 S3 (6,000/pair), and 704 S3 ($4,000/pair). Stand-mount models include the 705 S3 ($3,400/pair), 706 S3 ($2,200/pair), and 707 S3 ($1,800/pair). The center-channel HTM71 S3 and MTM72 S3 are $2,500 and $1,500, respectively.

For more information, visit bowerswilkins.com.