Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air

8.8/10 AVG.
RATING

  • Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air
  • Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air
  • Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air
  • Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air
  • Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air
  • Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air
  • Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air

Specs / Features


Zeppelin Air w/ Lightning Connector is the complete speaker dock, making your music sound richer and more lifelike than ever before. | Apple's AirPlay technology lets you stream music wirelessly from your iPhone®, iPad®, iPod touch ®, Mac or PC. | Zeppelin Air with Lightning connector's dock is compatible with latest iPhones, iPod touches, and iPod nanos. | Supported by Bowers & Wilkins' free Control app for easy setup. | Bowers & Wilkins' Zeppelin Air comes with a 2-year limited warranty only when purchased from an authorized dealer including Amazon.com (indicated by ships from and sold by Am... More

Zeppelin Air w/ Lightning Connector is the complete speaker dock, making your music sound richer and more lifelike than ever before. | Apple's AirPlay technology lets you stream music wirelessly from your iPhone®, iPad®, iPod touch ®, Mac or PC. | Zeppelin Air with Lightning connector's dock is compatible with latest iPhones, iPod touches, and iPod nanos. | Supported by Bowers & Wilkins' free Control app for easy setup. | Bowers & Wilkins' Zeppelin Air comes with a 2-year limited warranty only when purchased from an authorized dealer including Amazon.com (indicated by ships from and sold by Amazon.com).

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Specification

Brand Bowers & Wilkins
Model ZEPAIRLC
Size 71 x 30 cm (28 x 11.8 in)

Reviews summary

8.8/10AVG.
RATING
Based on 16 reviews

What's good

  • Excellent sound fidelity on acoustic music
  • Wireless streaming via AirPlay
  • Easy setup

What's bad

  • Somewhat weak bass
  • Control lag when pausing, playing or adjusting volume wirelessly

Like its predecessor, the Zeppelin Air has the same oblong shape that hearkens back to the flying airships of the past that shared the same name. Measuring in at a little over 2 feet in length and weighing 13.5 pounds, it is larger than many other iPod docks available. Its large size is due to the five drivers, – two 3-inch midrange drivers, two 1-inch aluminum tweeters and a 5-inch subwoofer – which are hidden away by the curved cloth grilles. The rear of the speaker has Ethernet and USB ports, a 3.5mm audio input, Lightning connector and a composite video output. Besides an iPod dock, the Zeppelin Air also allows wireless streaming via AirPlay.

Besides a couple design tweaks, the biggest improvement is its simplified setup. Now you only need to download the control iOS app and tap through some screens to connect the speaker to the WiFi network. A purple light indicates the speaker has been connected. Experts warn that the process is much more complicated when using a PC over a Mac. While wireless streaming generally worked, they did experience some dropouts and interference when they strayed too far from the WiFi router. As well, they also dealt with control lag and it can take a few seconds to play, pause or even adjust the volume of a track.

Of course what matters the most is sound quality and the Zeppelin Air delivers. For the size, reviewers consider it to be one of the best speakers in terms of quality even when compared to more recent desktop iPod docks. They describe it as having a clean and powerful sound though they add the bass is somewhat weak. Still, Digital Trends states, "The bass is much bigger and deeper than we thought it would be…The bass gets a little hollow and boomy and higher volumes, but never bottoms out or goes flat." In general, critics recommend it for more acoustic music such as classical or bluegrass for the most accurate reproduction and soundscape.

Despite some flaws, reviewers were still impressed with the Zeppelin Air. PC Mag states, "The Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air remains one of the best-sounding speakers we've tested…" Crutchfield adds, "The Zeppelin Air sounds substantially better than the first-generation…And the added functionality of Apple AirPlay made it a definite asset…"

Reviews (8.8/10 Avg. rating)


PC Magazine

Top-notch audio performance, distinctive style.

from PC Magazine

The striking B&W Zeppelin Air sounds as excellent as it did when the company first released the 30-pin version of this speaker in 2011, but it still has lingering AirPlay-related flaws.

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The striking B&W Zeppelin Air sounds as excellent as it did when the company first released the 30-pin version of this speaker in 2011, but it still has lingering AirPlay-related flaws.

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TechHive

Exceptional audio reproduction, exquisite industrial design

from TechHive

$700 is a lot of dough to drop on a speaker. But if you’re an avid Apple/AirPlay household and can swing the budget, you won’t be disappointed with the latest effort from Bowers & Wilkins. It sounds as gorgeous as it looks.

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$700 is a lot of dough to drop on a speaker. But if you’re an avid Apple/AirPlay household and can swing the budget, you won’t be disappointed with the latest effort from Bowers & Wilkins. It sounds as gorgeous as it looks.

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PCWorld

The Brits have done it again

from PCWorld

$700 is a lot of dough to drop on a speaker, especially since we haven’t been able to review the just-about-to-ship $500 Sonos Play:5. But if you’re an avid Apple/AirPlay household and can swing the budget, you won’t be disappointed with the latest effort from Bowers & Wilkins. It sounds as gorgeous as it looks.

Read full review

$700 is a lot of dough to drop on a speaker, especially since we haven’t been able to review the just-about-to-ship $500 Sonos Play:5. But if you’re an avid Apple/AirPlay household and can swing the budget, you won’t be disappointed with the latest effort from Bowers & Wilkins. It sounds as gorgeous as it looks.

Read full review

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PC Magazine

Top-notch audio performance, distinctive style

from PC Magazine

The Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air remains one of the best-sounding speakers we've tested in the lab. From a pure sound quality perspective, it's a must-have wireless speaker. However, you can find more responsive and less expensive wireless speakers that only slightly sacrifice sound quality...More

The Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air remains one of the best-sounding speakers we've tested in the lab. From a pure sound quality perspective, it's a must-have wireless speaker. However, you can find more responsive and less expensive wireless speakers that only slightly sacrifice sound quality for those benefits, such as the Marshall Stanmore Bluetooth speaker. You can also sacrifice style and price for a more responsive and powerful B&W speaker, like the excellent A7, or go with our current AirPlay-equipped Editors' Choice, the Z2. If you don't mind waiting a few seconds between making adjustments when playing music and hearing those adjustments happen, though, and if you really want a gorgeous, unique sound system on your shelf, it's an excellent purchase. If you have less patience and budget, a more compromise-minded alternative is a better bet.

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Top Ten Reviews

Sleek, stylish and pack a punch

from Top Ten Reviews

The Zeppelin Air AirPlay speakers are sleek, stylish and pack a punch. The woofers and drivers work in concert to create balanced sound that is perfect for listening to all types of music. The AirPlay function makes it extremely convenient to use with Apple devices.

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The Zeppelin Air AirPlay speakers are sleek, stylish and pack a punch. The woofers and drivers work in concert to create balanced sound that is perfect for listening to all types of music. The AirPlay function makes it extremely convenient to use with Apple devices.

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Crutchfield

An excellent investment

from Crutchfield

So is the Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air really worth the $599 price tag? Well, is a Ferrari really worth $250K? Both of these products are in a league of their own in some regards. Sure you are paying more for an incrementally better product, but value was never really part of B&W’s...More

So is the Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air really worth the $599 price tag? Well, is a Ferrari really worth $250K? Both of these products are in a league of their own in some regards. Sure you are paying more for an incrementally better product, but value was never really part of B&W’s plan in the first place. The Zeppelin Air offers exceptional sound quality for an iPod dock, has a look that screams for attention, and is made by the Ferrari of home audio, Bowers & Wilkins. If you are looking for an iPod dock that is a little more affordable and can do without the Airplay technology, check out the Edifier Lena 5 Encore iF500 (which resembles a hot air balloon, coincidently) and the Altec Lansing MIX iMT800 which both offer outstanding sound quality.

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TrustedReviews

An engineering masterstroke

from TrustedReviews

Bowers & Wilkins has pulled off an engineering masterstroke with the Zeppelin Air. It still looks a million dollars, has even better sound reproduction than its predecessor and comes packing AirPlay. For these benefits it costs £100 more than the original Zeppelin, but if you can...More

Bowers & Wilkins has pulled off an engineering masterstroke with the Zeppelin Air. It still looks a million dollars, has even better sound reproduction than its predecessor and comes packing AirPlay. For these benefits it costs £100 more than the original Zeppelin, but if you can afford it and you don't mind being tethered to a power socket then it is money well spent.

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NDTV

The reigning king of all iPod docks at present

from NDTV

At present, the B&W Zeppelin Air is the reigning king of all iPod docks at present. With the Zeppelin Air, British audio alchemists have managed to enhance an already sublime product. Apart from the upgraded internals and better sound quality, B&W provides AirPlay which is a nifty little...More

At present, the B&W Zeppelin Air is the reigning king of all iPod docks at present. With the Zeppelin Air, British audio alchemists have managed to enhance an already sublime product. Apart from the upgraded internals and better sound quality, B&W provides AirPlay which is a nifty little addition making it more iOS friendly. We can even connect it to our TV and use it as a sound-bar. The only thing stopping one from buying this dock would be it ultra high price tag.

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What Hi-Fi

Fantastic sound and stunning streaming functions

from What Hi-Fi

The Zeppelin Air sounds great, functionality is much improved and sound quality is a step ahead of the original. Is it good enough to be crowned king of premium speaker docks? We shall see.

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The Zeppelin Air sounds great, functionality is much improved and sound quality is a step ahead of the original. Is it good enough to be crowned king of premium speaker docks? We shall see.

Read full review

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Engadget

As a casual auxiliary system, it's hard to beat

from Engadget

We certainly can't recommend it as your primary sound system -- the same or more functionality can be had for many fewer dollars -- but the Zeppelin Air is a really fun device. As a casual auxiliary system, it's hard to beat -- we think it has a lot more panache than Bose's offerings in the same...More

We certainly can't recommend it as your primary sound system -- the same or more functionality can be had for many fewer dollars -- but the Zeppelin Air is a really fun device. As a casual auxiliary system, it's hard to beat -- we think it has a lot more panache than Bose's offerings in the same space. It's impressive to behold, the sound is captivating, and it works like a charm once it's been set up: a perfect anniversary present for mom and dad, or a spectacular poolside or kitchen-based appliance, if you're the kind of person who can spare the $600 B&W is asking for. If you are, let us know, and we'll be happy to sling our latest mixtape to your Zeppelin at your next pool party.

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Amazon.com Reviews Summary

166 from Amazon.com

166 Amazon.com shoppers shared a review for the Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air. Ratings are middle of the road, averaging 3.9 out of 5 stars. See all Amazon.com customer reviews.

7.8/10

Amazon.ca Reviews Summary

2 from Amazon.ca

2 Amazon.ca shoppers shared a review for the Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Air. Ratings are generally positive, averaging 5 out of 5 stars. See all Amazon.ca customer reviews.

10/10

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