Bang & Olufsen will celebrate its 85th birthday next week and to celebrate it announced the latest in its market leading audio-visual devices in London this morning.
CEO of the Danish company, Kalle Hvidt Nielsen told TrustedReviews at the launch that he believes the BeoSound 8 is the only loudspeaker docking system in the world designed to work with the Apple iPad specifically. However Mr. Nielsen was also not shy about pointing out the device will go on sale in B&O's own stores (such as the one in Harrods) for the tidy sum of £895 – and no, you don’t get an iPad included for that price.
The BeoVision 8 continues B&O’s supreme record in design aesthetic with its two large conical speakers on either side of a aluminum bridge where a simple circular controller is the only break in the distinctive aluminum surface. The speakers are designed to look 2D and from the front it was pretty hard to know that conical speakers lay behind on first viewing.
The BeoSound 8 was designed to work with Apple products (iPad, iPhone, iPod) through the plug-and-play docking station on the bridge. However other devices can be connected to the system through USB or AUX line-in ports allowing pretty much any device to be connected. The only issue here is the aesthetic would be ruined as the device really does look best with an Apple product sitting on top.
The sound from the device is impressive and the active two-way speakers means that in the BeoSound 8 there is four drive units pumping out the the sound, which is considerable from a device measuring 66.1 x 23.9 x 16.4cm.
The system has a manual room adaption switch with three positions which allows the speakers to adapt to their specific location. The unit which can stand on its own, comes with a bracket for wall mounting. As well as controlling the system with the on-board controller, a circular disc remote is also included and as with almost all B&O devices, it can also be controlled with one of their universal intelligent remotes.
Integration is a key idea for the Danish company and Sales and Marketing Manager, Jason Smith, told TrustedReviews that each product it produces complements its existing product line and works in harmony with it.The device, which was designed by David Lewis, comes in either black or white and the speaker fronts can be replaced with a range of different colours on offer to suit your mood.
There is no doubt that the BeoSound 8 is a seriously impressive system but for the price it would want to be. We’re not sure if there really is a market out there for a £900 docking station given that most people who are that serious about their music would already have a pretty serious sound system installed. So besides the lucky few we can’t imagine many children getting this from Santa next month fro their iPods.