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Bowers & Wilkins unveils the Panorama 2 sound-bar

Bowers & Wilkins Panorama 2

Redesigned unit apparently provides "widescreen for your ears"

High-end audio specialist Bowers & Wilkins has announced its latest sound-bar, the Panorama 2, designed to offer “widescreen for your ears.”

Based around driver units designed to disperse sound to as wide a listening area as possible, the Panorama 2 is built to create a large ‘sweet spot’ for audio reproduction – an important consideration if you regularly watch TV with more than one other person in the room. Changes to the driver units’ design, and separate tweeters, midrange and low-frequency units, mean improved acoustic performance and batter bass compared to previous models.

The curved outer casing is designed, Bowers & Wilkins claims, to provide an unbroken surface for the drivers to operate within – an important consideration in reducing audio distortion and potential ‘rattle’ during bass-heavy playback.

The Panorama 2 is also designed as a plug-and-play unit: featuring three HDMI inputs and a single output, it’s compatible with Blu-ray players, set-top boxes, games consoles and TVs with an Audio Return Channel (ARC) feature. The sound-bar also includes an on-screen display, Consumer Electronics Control (CEC) support for volume adjustment with the TV’s remote, and an auxiliary optical input and sub-woofer output.

A front-facing display indicates the selected input and volume settings, but fades to black after a period of time so as not to distract from the TV’s picture. An integrated proximity sensor turns the display back on with a wave of the hand, with buttons providing direct access to all the Panorama 2’s various features.

Given Bowers & Wilkins history of releasing high-quality products for a premium price, it’s no surprise to see the company positioning the Panorama 2 at the top end of the market: due to launch later this month, the device will cost around £1,650.

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