Moulton Laboratories
the art and science of sound
Bang & Olufsen wins major car sound system award
Press Release
July 2006

The Bang & Olufsen in-car entertainment system fitted to the Audi A8 has been voted the world’s best sound system.

 
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The Audi A8 flanked by a pair of BeoLab 5s - the technology platform and reference for the automotive sound system.

At the seventh annual 'Interior of the Year' awards, conducted by Ward’s AutoWorld magazine in America, the Bang & Olufsen Advanced Sound System specially designed for the Audi A8 scooped the top audio prize. A jury of 69 automotive journalists voted it 'best sound system'.

The winners of the annual 'Interior of the Year' awards – which also included categories for best overall interiors, best navigation systems and best interior innovations – were selected from a field of 53 finalists picked by the editors of Ward’s Auto World’s various magazines and newsletters. To be eligible, a vehicle had to be new or redesigned for the 2006 model year car, or a 2007 model available for sale in calendar year 2006. Selection was based on overall styling, functionality, quality, fit and finish, convenience, and special features.

The Audi A8's sound system is specially designed by Bang & Olufsen and is tailor made to the exact acoustic requirements of the A8's interior – its size, shape and materials. It is the first in-car sound system from the renowned Danish hi-fi experts.

Its acoustic brilliance is achieved partly by the use of innovative new Acoustic Lens Technology that ensures an even horizontal dispersion of higher frequencies into the car interior, and partly by using Bang & Olufsen’s patented digital amplifier technology, ICEpower, that supplies the 14 speakers – each with its own dedicated amplifier – with more than 1,000 watts of power.
 
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Motorized Acoustic Lens, with B&O's BeoLab 5 speaker in the background.

The award was presented in Detroit at the opening of the Auto Interiors Show. Now in its 13th year, the Auto Interiors Show is presented by Ward’s Automotive Group and is recognised as the automotive industry’s leading trade show and conference for vehicle interiors.

For more information please contact:
Thomas Reil
Head of Information, Bang & Olufsen
Peter Bangs Vej 15
7600 Struer
Denmark
Phone no +45 9684 5100
Mobil no +45 6155 4141
E-mail .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

COMMENTS

     Feb 02, 2012 12:16 PM
Let me know when Stereophile magazine or Absolute Sound magazine rates the B&O the best sounding OEM sound system in the world. we have Naim, Meridian, Burmester, B&W, and I am sure others will be going after this market since people are getting up with Bose and starting to give up on Harmon Kardon. The Mark Levinson is nothing more than other components with Mark Levinison's name on it.
Rich Davis 
Groton, MA     Feb 09, 2012 12:38 PM
Actually, The Absolute Sound gave the BeoLab 5 a superb review, just so you know.

I don't know how you can reasonably rate high-end car systems with any precision. The B&O system for the Audi A8 is really excellent, in my opinion – I'm very proud of how it came out. And I'm very gratified by how it has moved down through the Audi model line, as well as morphing over into Aston Martins, Mercedes and, now, BMWs.

Currently, I have a Harman Logic 7 system in one of my cars and it also is really good, particularly in surround. I'm favorably impressed, and don't feel the need for anything better in a car, thanks.

Thanks again for writing.

Dave
Dave Moulton 
     Feb 09, 2012 11:42 PM
yeah, i know the hype around the B&O's. I personally think the lens design used might have a little problem if listended to off axis from that center portion of the lens. to me, high frequencies are very directional, right? Well, if you look inside the lens, the tweeter is faceing up, and the sound gets funneled into the lens, but on either side of that lens are flat and the sound will reflect back towards the tweeter, If you listen to those speakers off axis, the high end tends to sound kind of smeared and loses detail. Plus, I am not a fan of B&O's electronics. they are just cool looking nice sounding, but not great sounding for me to buy their products.. I think they overall, if push came to shove, they are nice, but the audiophile community would put other speakers by mfg like Meridian, B&W, MBL, FOCAL, Wilson, etc. above B&O.
Rich Davis 
Uk     Mar 05, 2013 03:54 PM
Rich Davis, I suggest that you listen to the beolab 5 and base your judgement of it on that experience, rather than on what you think about a technology based on looking at it. There are a number of ground breaking technologies in this product.

I heard them once, albeit for several hours, and immediately recognised significant and substantial advantages over other speaker systems I have heard.

I was pretty open minded about this product to begin with, but audiophile friends have been a lot more resistant. It is almost as if they are unwilling to trust their own ears. Possibly this is because they really don't want to accept that a single product produces better sound that the crazy voodoo audio systems they own. In the end, nobody I know who has listened to these things has been able to resist them. That includes hardened audiophiles, installers and sound engineers.
JonB 
Uk     Mar 05, 2013 03:59 PM
By the way Rich, the whole purpose of the tweeter design in the beolab 5 is to disperse high frequencies and avoid beaming. The result is that first reflections have the same tonality as direct sound. Read Dave's articles to see why this is important.
JonB 
     Mar 12, 2013 11:01 AM
I'll add my 2 cents here regarding Bang & Olufsen. I just picked up a laptop with Bang & Olufsen speakers and honestly? The best sound ever. I'm impressed that they have pushed into other avenues because they do things right. I'm a fan for life.
Bro Jake 

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