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Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28
Foto © Bang & Olufsen

Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 – Modern, networked stereo speakers

A “wireless” speaker system that combines cutting-edge acoustic innovations with practical smart speaker functions is to be available with the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28, according to Danish company Bang & Olufsen.

Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 is the name of the active loudspeaker system that the Danish company Bang & Olufsen envisages as a kind of link between all the possibilities of a modern, networked, some say smart solution and a classic hi-fi loudspeaker system.

The new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 allows for an extraordinary experience, with regard to flexibility, functionality and quality, according to Bang & Olufsen’s promise.

Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 – Acoustic innovations, smart features

“The Beolab 28 is our most advanced networked speaker to date. It offers powerful sound and can be placed flexibly thanks to its slim shape and small footprint. Beolab 28 has state-of-the-art wireless connectivity and streaming features that let you enjoy music according to your preferences.”

Christoffer Poulsen, Senior Vice President and Head of Product Management at Bang & Olufsen

The manufacturer calls it an adaptive, wireless speaker that embodies the company’s sound philosophy to deliver a powerful sound experience.

Three-way system with Class D

In a nutshell, the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 is a three-way system.

It combines a 1 inch tweeter with three 3 inch midrange drivers and a 6.5 inch woofer. These are driven by Class D amplifier modules, with a separate module for each of the three drivers. The tweeter module delivers 100 Watts, each of the Mittenton drivers also 100 Watts, and the woofer a full 225 Watts.

The signal processing is DSP-based, as is common in this class, and various optimisations and adjustments can be made via this Digital Signal Processor.

Bang & Olufsen Active Room Compensation, Bang & Olufsen Beam Width Control and Bang & Olufsen Adaptive Bass Linearization

First and foremost, the DSP-based signal processing provides the so-called Bang & Olufsen Active Room Compensation, which is intended to achieve an optimal adjustment to the room or the individual placement of the Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 in the room. Beam Width Control and Bang & Olufsen Adaptive Bass Linearization are also available.

The frequency range covered by the Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 is specified as 27 Hz to 23 kHz. According to the manufacturer, this solution is designed for rooms with a size between 15 and 50 m2.

Extremely slim design

What makes the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 so special is that it is an extremely slim, almost graceful solution. The system measures 137 cm in height and only 25.3 cm in width and depth when placed freely in the room.

But the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 can not only be freestanding, it can also be wall-mounted using its swivel stand.

When wall-mounted, the system measures 140 cm in height, 21.3 cm in depth, and 25.3 cm in width.

However, care should be taken when mounting the system on the wall, as the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 weighs 18.9 kg.

Streaming takes centre stage

Of course, streaming is the main focus of the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28, which can be connected to the network via the integrated WiFi module according to IEEE 802.11 ac and an Ethernet interface.

Then, various services can be accessed, using the two streaming technologies Google Chromecast and Apple AirPlay 2, but also Spotify Connect.

The Bang & Olufsen app, which is available for Apple iOS as well as for Google Android, is responsible for the control.

Directly on the device, there is an integrated touch user interface, which enables simple and quick control.

In addition, the customer has two control options in the form of the Bang & Olufsen Beoremote One BT and Bang & Olufsen Beoremote Halo.

Bluetooth 5.0

As you can see, the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 also supports Bluetooth 5.0, which, as mentioned above, is not only used for integrating the optional remote controls, but also for streaming directly from a smartphone or tablet.

Wireless Powerlink and WiSA

The new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 supports Wireless Power Link, which transmits signals at 24 bit and 48 kHz, as well as the industry standard WiSA, which also transmits signals at 24 bit and 48 kHz. Above all, WiSA offers the immense advantage that the Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 can be used in conjunction with all corresponding solutions from a wide range of manufacturers. And there are more and more of them on the market.

Of course, the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 is also primarily part of the Bang & Olufsen BeoLink Multiroom audio streaming and control system that Bang & Olufsen has been promoting for years, although this functionality will not be implemented until autumn 2021.

In terms of other interfaces, the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 offers an analogue as well as a digital input (optical S/PDIF interface) and a USB C port.

Unique design

As mentioned earlier, the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 is designed like a slim column, with the Cologne-based design studio Noto responsible for this design.

The design studio was founded by Thorsten Frackenpohl and André Poulheim. For 20 years, the Noto team has been creating life-enriching solutions based on insights, strategic thinking and experience in product design. Noto strongly believes in creating a positive future. They strive to work with bold partners to challenge the status quo and sustain the meaningful new, according to the company’s self-statement. Incidentally, the lead designers of the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 were Julian Sommer as well as Johannes Ott.

With its elegant design and slim silhouette, the Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 is intended to be a versatile speaker that can be placed anywhere in the living room, both standing on the floor and hanging on the wall, as already mentioned.

The aluminium comes in the colours Natural Silver, Black Anthracite and Bronze Tone and can be combined with a speaker cover made of high-quality knitted fabric or solid wood – to match any interior design. The textile cover is available in two colours, Grey and Grey Mélange. The wooden covers are available in Light Oak, Oak, Smoked Oak and Walnut.

The Beolab 28 has a curvature in the lower section. This is followed by a conical shape that contains the woofer. Both elements are held together by an almost invisible connector on the back of the Bang & Olufsen Beolab28, which hides the cables and gives the impression that the speaker is floating in the air.

The Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 has slats that magically open like a curtain when the speaker is switched on, as the manufacturer puts it, or move when the sound beam is adjusted, indicating whether the speaker is in “narrow” mode for a narrow sound beam width, or “wide” for a wide sound beam width. This sets the scene for the listening experience and creates a captivating ritual for the user, Bang & Olufsen is convinced.

The new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28 is expected to be available in stores immediately. The recommended retail price starts at € 10,750 for the version with textile cover, and the version with wooden cover is available from € 12,000.

Getting to the point

A wireless speaker that reinterprets the hi-fi system is how Bang & Olufsen describes the new Bang & Olufsen Beolab 28, which adapts to any living space and delivers an impressive soundscape. Thanks to integrated music streaming, you can access a wide range of content conveniently and flexibly and play everything instantly. All this comes in a beautifully slim form that can be placed anywhere, made from the best materials, including solid wood and aluminium from Bang & Olufsen’s own Factory 5. That all this comes at a price, of course…

Manufacturer: Bang & Olufsen
Distribution: Bang & Olufsen
Price:Bang & Olufsen Beosound 28 mit Textil-Cover ab € 10.750,-
Bang & Olufsen Beosound 28 mit Holz-Cover ab € 12.000,-

About Michael Holzinger

Michael Holzinger, founder and editor-in-chief of HiFi BLOG and sempre-audio.com, has been working for years as a journalist in the fields of IT, photography, telecommunications and consumer electronics.

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