High-end audio companies have been sidestepping from Bluetooth streaming technology, but thanks to the promised of near CD-quality wireless streaming from the latest Bluetooth 4.0 technology with aptX, we’re seeing mainstream premium audio maker Bower & Wilkins taking the plunge with the T7 and just days after, Bang & Olufsen also dishes out its own Bluetooth-enabled portable, dubbed BeoPlay A2. Of course, better streaming quality is not the sole determining factor; miniaturization of the components to achieve the sonic quality these premium audio companies are ever so obsessed with is another. Anyway, here it is, the Danish high-end audio equipment maker’s first ever Bluetooth speaker and it has a fair bit of features that differentiate itself from the horde of Bluetooth speakers, starting with the incorporation of drive units on both sides of the speaker.
In all, the A2’s 180W sonic bliss is achieved through two 3-inch full-range driver, two ¾ inch tweeters and a pair of 3-inch passive bass radiators, bolstered by two 30W class D amplifiers, while sound dispersion is assured by B&O’s Power Response Enhancement solution, giving what B&O referred to as “True360 sound”. Additionally, it also boast a power management system that enables its built-in rechargeable battery to offer a lavish 24 hours playback on a single charge. Aesthetically, the A2 is presented in the usual B&O chic, minimalist design comprising of extruded aluminum housing contrasted by a leather strap for portability and a touch of sophistication and luxury.
Speaking of portability, it is not quite the pocket-friendly you may be expecting; it measure 25.6 cm long, 14.2 cm wide and 4.4 cm, which puts it in the size of a typical clutch and is certainly not something that you will be able to slip into your pockets. Cargo pants’ pockets, perhaps, but not regular size pockets though. Price-wise, it will run you back at €349, or about US$440.