B&W 603 loudspeaker Sidebar

Ringing The Changes

The outgoing 683 S2 last sold for £1150 and when the new £1249 603 was launched to the press a key feature of B&W's presentation, attended by HFN, was an A/B demo between old and new models. Sonically there's a larger difference between the two than you might expect – compare them directly and it's clear that the greatest change is in the midband, which is now conspicuously smoother and less nasal sounding. It integrates better with the new pulp/Kevlar bass drivers, and even confers a smoother sound to the treble, although the tweeter itself is largely unchanged. Factor in greater low-level detail, sharper soundstaging and improved dynamics and it's a big win for the new model. In practical terms, by far the greatest improvement comes from B&W replacing the old Kevlar FST midrange driver with the Continuum cone on the 603. Similarly, the old twin alloy-skinned bass drivers are replaced by lighter/stiffer cones on the new model. Structurally, the cabinet is neater with a flush-mounted back rather than the old speaker's stepped profile, and the 'Flowport' reflex tube moves from the front to the rear of the cabinet.

B&W Group Ltd
West Sussex
0800 232 1513