Bowers & Wilkins PI7 & PI5
True Wireless In-Ear Headphones are immensely popular, but most currently available designs represent a compromise choice, one that trades sound quality for wireless convenience. Bowers & Wilkins has always insisted this issue would need to be addressed before the company could consider launching its own TWS products. Now, after an extensive period of development, Bowers & Wilkins is proud to launch two new products that bring the brand's famous True Sound promise of absolute performance to the True Wireless In-Ear
The flagship model is PI7. PI7 supports Qualcomm aptX Adaptive wireless transmission from compatible mobile devices, allowing for high-resolution music transmission from suitable streaming services, such as Qobuz. PI7 backs that high-resolution capability with 24-bit/48kHz wireless transmission between each earbud. Together, these two technologies make PI7 one of very few True Wireless headphones able to support High-Resolution audio all the way from your music source to your ears.
In addition, while the enclosure of each PI7 is compact enough to fit comfortably in the ear, each earbud has a specification remarkably close to that of an advanced conventional loudspeaker. Each features a 9.2mm bespoke Bowers & Wilkins drive unit, joined by a high-frequency balanced armature driver, with each of the four drive units in the system (two in each earbud) actively driven by its own amplifier. This configuration ensures exceptional control, superlative dynamics, and deep, accurate bass. PI7 also features Adaptive Noise Cancellation to automatically monitor, analyze and adapt to its surroundings to produce the best possible experience. That ANC system is paired with six microphones - three in each earbud - for crystal-clear sound quality with phone calls.
Joining the PI7 is the new PI5, which uses TWS+ technology for robust, high-quality earbud-to-earbud synchronization, coupled to a single 9.2mm Bowers & Wilkins-developed bespoke drive unit in each earbud. The PI5 supports CD-quality playback thanks to the inclusion of high-quality aptX wireless transmission of music from an aptX-compatible mobile device. PI5 also offers seamless access to user-selectable noise-canceling plus an ambient pass-through mode, and it features twin built-in microphones for high-quality phone calls.
Both the PI5 & PI7 can be configured via the Bowers & Wilkins companion App and both have a simple one-button user interface - a single capacitive button that can perform multiple tasks simply and elegantly - coupled to voice assistant support via either Siri or Google Assistant, depending on the connected device. Multiple source devices can be wirelessly paired to either model, allowing the user to easily and conveniently reconnect to each source as and when needed - such as quickly switching from music on a phone to an online conference call on a laptop. Finally, both models offer the convenience of wireless recharging compatible with a wide range of suitable accessories, plus charging cases that can recharge each earbud once its built-in battery life is exhausted. PI5 will operate for four and a half hours before it requires a recharge, with four hours for PI7. Both cases will then offer up to four full recharges for their respective earbuds - so you'll always have plenty to entertain you on that long trip.
Speaking of which, PI7 also offers a genuinely unique feature that will make longer journeys easier to cope with - its smart charging case can connect to an external audio source - such as an in-flight entertainment system - by 3.5mm or USB cable and then wirelessly retransmit audio from that source to the earbuds, all in outstanding quality. Full specifications are below and images of all products in all finishes are available from the Bowers & Wilkins Hub. Available from 21st April, PI7 and PI5 look set to make the same impact in the TWS category as Bowers & Wilkins has previously made with its acclaimed and Award-Winning headphone designs. The company has taken its time in creating its first True Wireless In-Ear headphones, but the finished products have been worth the wait. Info and photos by Bowers & Wilkins.