Air your tunes with the new Zeppelin Air

Zeppelin Air

Bowers & Wilkins unveils the first premium wireless iPod speaker

Three years ago the original multi-award winning Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin revolutionised the iPod speaker market. Now, continuing to lead the way in sound and design excellence, Bowers & Wilkins bring you the Zeppelin Air, the ultimate wireless speaker system, and the first premium iPod dock to feature new Apple AirPlay wireless streaming technology.

An iPod speaker for the digital age, AirPlay allows music to be streamed wirelessly from a computer to Zeppelin Air, while everything from track selection to volume levels is controlled from either your PC or Mac, or via an iPhone®, iPad® or iPod Touch. Discover the freedom in bypassing the computer entirely, by streaming your favourite songs directly from your device – all without the need to use the Zeppelin Air’s docking arm.

Carrying over 45 years of superior Bowers & Wilkins sound engineering technology, the Zeppelin Air is the best sounding Zeppelin yet. With dramatically improved sonic performance from updated drive units, five corresponding dedicated audiophile amplifiers specially designed by Bowers & Wilkins, and featuring radically improved bass, the Zeppelin Air redefines wireless sound at home, providing a truly room-filling experience.

And while Zeppelin’s iconic shape has been retained, the Zeppelin Air offers the ultimate in Bowers & Wilkins design and functionality, with subtly updated styling such as the new high-quality black back-plate and updated iPod docking arm supporting a digital connection – providing you with the definitive digital sound.

Click here to find out more about Zeppelin Air

Going to the Bristol show? Be the first to hear Zeppelin Air in action

We’re offering visitors to the Bristol Sound & Vision Show the chance to be among the first people in the UK to experience Zeppelin Air before it goes on sale this March.

All you need to do to book your place for the Bristol demo is follow this link and select the day and time slot of your choosing from those available.

This free ticket is for the demonstration only, and you will also need to have paid entrance to the Bristol Sound & Vision Show to access the Bowers & Wilkins rooms.

Zeppelin Air demonstrations are taking place in room 326 at the Marriott Hotel, Bristol during the weekend of February 25-27th.

For full details of the Bristol Show 2011, see the What Hi-Fi blog


  • Kais Dad says:

    Hmmm, I bought a Zeppelin yesterday- this has taken the shine off it somewhat- the guy in John Lewis MUST have known about this. Willl there be a possibility of downloadable upgrades one wonders? That’ll teach me eh? ‘it’s not the worst scenario I know but has slightly soured the overall purchase experience.

  • Callum Buchanan says:

    This is just amazing!!!! i miss the aluminium backplate but the airplay, amps speakers and shape more that make up for it

  • Rohan Pritchard says:

    Ooh I need one, but I could never afford one, I’m only 13 :L Keep up the good work B&W maybe one day I can nick my uncles :L

  • iK says:

    I really, really hope that the dock will be removable. It would be a shame if it isn’t. No use having an empty dock when only using airplay at all times.

  • QuackingPlums says:

    @iK: you could always plug in an iPod Touch to use as the remote control for AirPlay – it’ll always be charged and ready to go… ;-)

  • Wayne says:

    +1 on including a removable dock. Who wants to look at that if you’re streaming as I intend to? Otherwise, it looks like a great piece of kit and I can’t wait to see it live.

  • mike simmonds says:

    Hi – For this or for the “old” Zeppelin – is there to be an iphone app to actually switch the Zeppelin on and off. I use my iphone for the controls and only use the Zeppelin iphone for the “on and off” functions. An iphone app with this would be great.

  • mike simmonds says:

    Hi – For this or for the “old” Zeppelin – is there to be an iphone app to actually switch the Zeppelin on and off. I use my iphone for the controls and only use the Zeppelin remote for the “on and off” functions. An iphone app with this would be great.

  • Daniel says:

    As an owner of the old Zeppelin, I really wish there were some way for me to get Airplay without buying the new one. I’d be willing to pay for that.

  • Joe J says:

    Yep shame about the alu back but can’t wait. Removable dock would be nice but I doubt we’ll see it in this version or think they would have mentioned it as a selling point.

  • Winston says:

    And this thing won’t even play the FLAC files from your society of sound because stupid iTunes wont load FLAC. great joke b&w. i thought that you guys would at least have the clout to make Apple support FLAC. I was wrong.

    I heard on the CES video that it would retail for 499 pounds (but still 599USD). WHAT! DId that extra 100 quid go to Apple to license their AirPlay technology?

  • Simone says:

    It’s the “old” zeppelin upgradable to the new with airplay?

  • DanielD says:

    NIce, I can’t wait to hear when day it will actually ship.
    Does the iPhone 4 fit on the dock with it’s bumper attached?
    And how about higher voltage on the dock so that the iPad can charge on it too?

  • Sevoflurane says:

    Excellent. Having got Airplay up and running in a couple of rooms the prospect of doing it without the need for an Airport Express is enticing. Zeppelin Mini Air please…

  • Peter ISF says:

    I can’t wait I have had my Zeppelin for 2-3 years and still love it and I love the chance to upgrade to the Zeppelin Air,”massive B&W fan” , it says on the ces expo that it would be priced the same as the Zeppelin but it seems it will be £100 more in the UK ??

  • Ridney says:

    just when i purchased a b&w zeppelin this new version came out! would there be a possible trade-in for this new zeppelin air? :)

  • New Media Support says:

    Hi all,

    For all those enquiring about trading in their Zeppelins, this is something you will need to discuss with your dealers.

    Regarding firmware enquiries, unfortunately it is possible to update existing Zeppelin or Zeppelin Mini models to make them compatible with Airplay. It is not a simple matter of firmware, the hardware inside Zeppelin Air is completely different.
    You can find out more here:
    I hope this helps,
    Kind regards
    New Media Support

  • Anders says:

    What is the standby power consumption on the Zeppelin Air?

  • Helen says:

    Any idea when the Zeppelin Air will be coming out in Hong Kong?

  • Susanna Grant says:

    Hi Anders,
    The standby power consumption is 3.7 watts.

    Kind regards

  • Andrew Naylor says:


    Really looking forward to getting the new Zeppelin Air. Will it fit the wall bracket for the original Zeppelin?


  • New Media Support says:

    Hi Helen

    Our plan is to have the product available in March 2011 globally. Some markets might be a little later so keep an eye on the site for updates.

    Kind regards,
    New Media Support

  • New Media Support says:

    Hi Mike,
    There is currently no such iPhone or iPod app that can offer this sort of functionality and there are no immediate plans to introduce one. However we are constantly looking at ways to improve our products and all customer feedback is gratefully received

    Kind regards
    New Media Support

  • New Media Support says:

    Hi Daniel,

    We have used the universal standard multipin assembly whereby an iPod or iPhone device has no protective casing around it in order to connect to the docking arm on the B&W Zeppelin Air. Due to the vast variation in the thickness of bumpers and cases for the iPhone 4, we have been unable to accommodate for all these types, and therefore cannot guarantee that the use of a bumper will seat fully home on the dock connector.

    The Zeppelin Air does not supply the voltage requirement for the charging of an iPad and would recommend using the supplied charger with the iPad, and streaming via AirPlay to the Zeppelin Air.

    Hope this helps
    Kind regards

  • New Media Support says:

    Dear Simone,

    The current Zeppelin does not have the hardware capabilities to support wireless streaming so it will not be possible to upgrade via a firmware/software upgrade to offer functionality with the new Apple Airplay technology.
    However it is possible to connect the Zeppelin up to an Airport Express to stream from a Mac/PC, please note this is not a wireless solution as a cable would be required from the Airport Express to the Aux socket in the back of the Zeppelin.

    Kind regards
    New Media Support

  • Levin says:

    I would also like to see the dock being removable. There is no need for it you are only using Airplay. Coould anyone from B & W please comment on ths topic.

  • New Media Support says:

    The docking arm is not removable and there are currently no plans to make it so however we will pass this enquiry onto our designers for consideration. Please note that if the arm is removed by a customer it will invalidate the warranty.

    Kind regards
    New media support team

  • Rickyroo says:

    Here’s another vote to make the docking arm removable but otherwise this looks like a winner.

  • tommy says:

    Have zeppelin which is very good its on all day , with help by running through balanced mains, i willl be interested to hear how much better the sound can be than it is now ! your rep at the ces show on you tube said 4X better ? look fwd to do a side by side test i hope its all goog news as 4X time better sound should be very very good !!

  • paramount signs says:

    Can’t wait for this !!

    I’m going to the Bristol show at the end of the month , will i be able to buy a Zeppelin Air there :)

  • Adam says:

    I think the arm would look really good it it had a push release and then eased out like a door from an airplane. It would be flush to the surface and has a slow release when you tap it.
    Just my thoughts……… :o)

  • Patrick. says:

    Can’t wait to receive mine, but would also love to put it on one of those wooden stands as shown in the gallery. Does anyone know the manufacturer?

  • simon penson says:


    If you have an original Zepplin and want to buy an Air also could the two work as part of an integrated sound solution for around the entire home in the same way as if you had 2 Airs or is the original now useless in this regard?

  • New Media Support says:

    Hi Simon,

    The original Zeppelin can be connected to an Apple Airport Express, in order to stream via Airplay on iTunes from a Mac or PC. From iTunes it is possible to stream to multiple speakers via Airplay and it will be possible to stream to both a Zeppelin Air, and an Airport Express in much the same way as streaming to two Zeppelin Air’s, to get the same song playing from both Zeppelin’s.

    However please be made aware that you will require either a 3.5mm to 3.5mm headphone jack cable, or a Mini Optical to Mini Optical cable to connect the Airport Express to the Aux socket in the back of the Zeppelin, so that the music being wirelessly streamed from iTunes to the Airport Express will be heard through the Zeppelin’s speakers.

    Kind regards,
    New Media Support Team

  • Patrick F. says:

    Can’t wait to lay my hands on one of these…. quick question, if I have an iPhone docked to the Zeppelin Air in sleeping / standby mode and the iPhone starts to play music (for example, by an Alarm Clock App), will the Zeppelin Air automatically leave sleep/standby and start to play back?
    In other words, can this setup be used as a – albeit quite pricey – alarm clock?

  • andy brierley says:

    Does the air fit the Zeppelin 1 wall bracket?

  • New Media Support says:

    Hi there Andy Brierley

    With respect to the Zeppelin Air wall bracket, so long as the serial number for the bracket is 25001 or above (has 4 holes in the base of the wall bracket), it will accomodate both the Zeppelin and the Zeppelin Air.

    Kind regards

    New Media Support
    Bowers & Wilkins

  • scott s says:

    is there going to be a wireless connector that docks onto the last zeppelin. sort of feel cheated, bought mine last august, if id have know you were coming out with the air, i would have held off from buying.

  • STEVE says:

    Will someone PLEASE tell me how to do the update to the Zeppelin Air??? I looked on the B & W Website and it has two steps that merely state……
    1) Undock any device and uplug the ZA
    2) Connect the ZA to a Mac/PC via USB

    You gotta be kidding me!! That’s it? Well, I downloaded the file to my desktop, connected the ZA to my PC with a USB cable, opened the update and clicked on the file and it brought up a dialog box that asked to open it, I went through all the steps in the wizard, NOTHING. I unplugged it and plugged it back in, then docked my iPhone and checked the version in SETTINGS > GENERAL > ABOUT > ZEPPELIN AIR…. it still shows 1.0.0. Will someone who has done this please help me?

  • David Jenkins says:

    Have you still not been able to update your Zeppelin?? If so, let me know, I will try to help you.


  • David Jenkins says:

    A poll:

    Any of you have both the Zeppelin and the Zeppelin Air? What are your thoughts about the sounds of each?
    In my opinion, the first Zeppelin has a better set of mid-range drivers, and thus a better mid-range sound. But, the Zeppelin Air has a better sub driver, and the part I LOVE is that it bypasses the iPod/iPhone DAC, and uses it’s own. The first Zeppelin on a few bass heavy songs (not rap), would make a chuffing or distortion noise, and the Zeppelin does not, EVER. I wish they had left the mid-range drivers alone, and it would be perfect in every way. I also miss the classy polished stainless steel back, but understand it is gone because of “Air” reception, or so I’m told. I also LOVE the smaller LED on the Air, and really didn’t like the big LED thru the speaker cloth of the first Zeppelin. It is way too distracting, and too big! All in all I love both new and old Zeppelins, one at work, and one in the bedroom. I just don’t play bass heavy songs on the older Zeppelin. I love B&W, have a lot of their products, and try my best to spread the word as to how great a Company B&W is. I just wish I had the money to buy a Jaguar car with the B&W sound system in it. That would complete my collection. So far I have: two Zeppelins, the P-5 headphones, MM-1 computer speakers, and the 805D speakers (STUNNING!!!!), driven by a Rotel 1500 all-in-one CD-amp/tuner. With Audio Quest cables. I am a happy man!

    I just wish there were others that owned, or have both Zeppelins, and tell me what they think about the differences in sound, and which Zeppelin they like best, old or new, and why.


  • pascal says:

    Hi David Jenkins,
    One question: which one produces the best sound: The MM-1, or the Zeppelins?

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