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Get High-Quality Sound with Bowers and Wilkins Panorama 3 soundbars!

The Bowers and Wilkins Panorama 3 is a large, reasonably priced Dolby Atmos soundbar that the firm created to compete with the Sonos Arc. The new soundbar features a lot of speaker drives, a bit of power, and a lot more control choices to assist Bowers and or Wilkins to achieve its goals.

The materials, craftsmanship, and finish are all standard Bowers & Wilkins, which means they’re near-flawless. Both wired and wireless connectivity is good, although HDMI passthrough would be nice.

Almost every performance, on the other hand, is incredibly spectacular. The Panorama 3 boasts a winningly harmonic approach to music, as well as scale, fidelity, and dramatic strength. The Bowers and Wilkins can float your boat if you want to control with recklessness, punch with elegance, and scale with accuracy. However, if you came for a filled Dolby Atmos sonic elevation, you might be disappointed.

Price and availability

Get High-Quality Sound with Bowers and Wilkins Panorama 3 soundbars!

The Bowers and Wilkins Panorama 3 has become available for $999 (£899 in the UK, €999 in Europe, and AU$1599 in Australia).

This high-performance soundbar-shaped elephant inside the room, the Sonos Arc, is impossible to ignore at this price point. Bowers & Wilkins designed Panorama 3 to compete directly with Arc & priced it significantly higher than the Sonos. By the end of this analysis, it should be clear if this strategy is ambitious, confident, or foolish.

Design

Design

When it comes to the Panorama 3’s industrial design, the word’soundbar’ is crucial. Although it’s a fairly large cabinet (at 47.6in wide, it’ll need a TV of at least 55in to sit beneath it if it’s not going to look a little awkward in one home theatre setup), it has a low (2.6in) profile. As well as the combination of punctured plastic and tactile sound cloth helps reduce the visual bulk as well. Panorama 3 is, at its core, the shape and dimensions of a soundbar.

The Bowers and Wilkins sit well beneath many TVs without cluttering the bottom of a screen thanks to its low profile. In addition, if you want to mount the soundbar just on the wall, it comes with a (simple but durable) bracket. However, like all Dolby Atmos soundbars with upward-firing drivers, placing the Panorama 3 behind a surface would limit its performance. So, for example, placing it on a mid-shelf inside a TV stand is a no-no.

Connectivity

Bowers and Wilkins Panorama 3 Connectivity

Very few physical connections are located in a recess on the back of the cabinet. Along with a figure-of-eight main power input and a reset button, there’s an ethernet connector, digital optical input, HDMI, and service-only USB-C connector. True, HDMI passthrough might benefit individuals with a limited number of HDMI ports on their TV, but the Sonos Arc lacks this capability as well.

Configuration

Bowers and Wilkins Panorama 3 Configuration

When it comes to Bowers & Wilkins’ specification of the Panorama 3’s interior, though, there’s no need to grumble. It’s set up in a 3.1.2 arrangement, with the forward-firing left, right, and center channels are hidden under an acoustic cloth that wraps the front and sides of the cabinet; each channel has a disconnected 3/4-inch (19mm) titanium-dome speaker and a couple of 2-inch (50mm) midrange driver. A pair of 4-inch (100mm) find out exactly are placed in an acoustic shell. That accounts for the vast majority of the soundbar’s internal volume, providing cinematic rumble and punch.

A maximum of 400 watts of Class D amplifier power this impressive lineup. Each tweeter, subwoofer, and Elevation unit gets 40 watts, and apiece set of midrange drivers gets 40 watts each.

Audio Performance

We’ll start with less positive news, if only because there isn’t much of it. When handed a Dolby Atmos soundtrack so work with, Panorama 3 produces an unmistakable sense of height. But it’s nowhere near as strong as Sennheiser’s Ambeo soundbar, much less. Even close to the impression of having genuine overhead speakers. The Ambeo, on the other hand, is a lot more costly, and having the above speakers is a lot more work than getting a soundbar. And, besides, the Sonos Arc isn’t exactly a step ahead in this regard.

Now that it’s out of the way. Let’s get into the (much longer) list of all of the things Panorama 3 excels at. The scale, energy, and engulfing character of the Bowers & Wilkins’ performance is difficult to overstate while listening to the Atmos-assisted soundtrack of 6 Underground (which would be a dominant performance listen as well as a mind-numbing watch).

Tone

It has a naturalistic and compelling tone to it. The Panorama 3 is confident, coherent, and well balanced from the quick, snappy, and extensively defined low frequencies, through wide, expressive, and comparably rich midrange, and straight up to the brilliant and substantial-top end.

It creates a large soundstage, with a lot of breadths and – assuming you don’t have an obscenely high ceiling – a lot of height. The height impact here isn’t overt – but it’s undeniable, at the risk of oversimplifying the subject. The soundstage is well-defined, and the effects are expertly directed – movement between the wide left toward the wide right is clear and audible.

Without breaking a sweat, handles rapid movie transitions.

This is a picture that is active for the sake of being dynamic, appearing designed to shift from a quiet reflective period to a deafeningly loud gunfight at any given point. The Panorama 3, it’s safe to say, relishes the chance to show off its abilities. True enough, it can go from complete silence to massive set-piece overload in the blink of an eye. Throughout, it maintains a sense of control, authority, and composure.

Panorama 3 is equally exceptional in terms of music, with a balanced and nuanced tone & vaulting dynamic power. When it comes to music, the soundbar’s detail levels are just as amazing as when it comes to movies.

The Bowers and Wilkins Panorama 3 also handles rhythms with aplomb. Those straight-edged, fast, and hefty bass frequencies provide a great foundation to build. It allows Panorama 3 to show genuine sinuousness in audio content of any kind. You couldn’t ask for a better soundbar that also serves as a music speaker.

Controls

Controls

The remote control is not included with the Panorama 3. But don’t get the wrong idea: this doesn’t mean your control options are constrained in any manner.

Connect your soundbar with your television via one of the TV’s Arcs and eARC HDMI ports. Then use the screen’s remote control to adjust the volume. You may also use the Bowers & Wilkins ‘Music’ app to manage the level. As well as integrate your favorite music-streaming services, online radio providers, and other services. Bowers & Wilkins is confident in the Panorama 3’s ability to serve as a music speaker, which is why it incorporates Apple AirPlay 2, aptX Adaptive Bluetooth, and Spotify Connect. The control software will also allow you to incorporate the soundbar into a larger B&W-based multiroom system, which will be available soon.’

The soundbar’s top surface also has proximity-sensing capacitive touch controls that are hidden until activated. It’s only the essentials (‘play/pause,’ ‘volume up/down,’) but what else would you need? If none of the other options are satisfactory, there is always Amazon Alexa voice control.

Conclusion

The Bowers and Wilkins Panorama 3 is a very well, attractively polished, and precisely supplied soundbar. It is capable of boosting your audio experience in terms of television and movies to extremely high fidelity levels. It’s a huge, forceful listen that achieves a fair level of Dolby Atmos elevation and does surprisingly well with music as well.

If you’re more of a cynic, the Panorama 3 is a great deal of money for just a soundbar. With such a basic control app, no multi-room capabilities (yet), is part of an ecosystem that’s scarcely worthy of the title when compared to Sonos, and also has a Dolby Atmos impact that’s not as strong as one might want.

In our opinion, the overall quality of the performance makes it easier. To overlook the Atmos delivery’s subtlety and lack of multi-room capability. If sound quality is important to you, the Panorama 3 is very well worth the money.

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