Designed to be placed anywhere, built to stream anything, says the high-end Danish audiomakers Bang & Olufsen on their website listing for the Beolab 28, their sequel to the eight-year-old Beolab 18. That’s a rather lofty promise, but a promise the outfit is looking to keep as they build on the 35-year legacy of the ultra-luxe Beolab Penta they first debuted back in the day.
And build on it they have – the Beolab 28 is all of 1,250 watts emanating through three 3-inch full range drivers on its front and sides, a 1-inch tweeter and a powerful, bassy 6.5-inch subwoofer for optimum sound quality, no matter the frequency.
It’s equipped with the latest version of tech Bang & Olufsen calls active room compensation, which adjusts the bass response of one’s sound production to the room – meaning that the speakers can technically go anywhere.
Here’s how. Much like its predecessor, the Beolab 28 remains comely and very much in line with Scandinavian sensibilities where it comes to interior decor. After all, why change what doesn’t need changing? It’s 54 inches (about 140 cm) tall and just over 22 cm in diameter, coming supported by an external, cable-hiding backbone that gives the impression of speaker levitation. The use of luxury materials like fine wood, aluminium (anondized, in-house) and fabric covers, all available in numerous liveries, is just icing on the cake.
The speaker can either be mounted on a wall, or on the floor – either is fine, as its vertical wooden slats double up as chic embellishment while redirecting sound. In narrow mode, you’d get sound unadulterated by reflections from side walls or furniture – this is the mode for serious audiophiles doing serious listening. As for wide mode, this is what you’d probably be using on a day-to-day basis, as you’re getting a more diffuse audio experience that accommodates more than one listener (sitting in a specific location) in a room.
As an all-in-one, the tower speakers are designed for minimalism – they’re a release from the clutter of typical home entertainment systems. Said down-firing 6.5-inch subwoofer provides enough bass for most expansive living rooms, eliminating the need for an additional subwoofer. The freedom of placement we mentioned earlier due to its bass compensation gives you further wiggling room to place the speakers where you want them to be.
They’re very much speakers to be used by the everyman – people who can appreciate a full-range sound reproduction in a way that’s as easy as breathing. They’re also for those who can appreciate Bang & Olufsen’s commitment to quality. The speakers are crafted in the brand’s renowned Factory 5 in Struer, Denmark. Any collaborations with outside vendors are with those that can be trusted.
More than that, they’re determined to provide speakers that last – technologically-speaking. The Beolab 28’s are frontloaded with processing power and connectivity technology that’s capable of receiving performance updates and features into the future – with a connectivity module that can be replaced completely when its outdated.
If you need proof, just look at the Beolab Penta and its successors, the Beolab 6000 and 8000. All of these speakers are still being serviced by the brand today, which just goes to show they take future-proofing as seriously as they take their sound.
(Related: A French, luxury minibar hidden in a box )