I’ll never forget an experience at CEDIA many years ago. I was in the B&W booth and they showed me a prototype of this new home theater speaker they were developing called the CT8 series. It was physically huge, required 3 amplifiers per speaker, had tremendous dynamic ability, and had the great sound we have learned to love from Bowers & Wilkins. The system received wonderful press, but the only drawback was its price, about 200K for the complete package.
Well in typical B&W fashion, a few years passed and a new series was introduced, called the CT7 series. For over 40 years B&W has taken the approach of doing a “no holds barred” project, then taking what they learn and making a line that many more people can afford. The first models in the CT 7 series were speakers designed to mount on the screen wall, being only 10.5” deep for all speakers. We got in the first model they shipped, the 7.5 and set it up in one of our theater rooms. The 7.5’s are only $600 each. I remember to this day the first time I played it. I put in a very old Sheffield Labs instrumental CD and my jaw hit the floor. This system made music so dynamic, yet so natural sounding, I could not believe it!
A few weeks later the CT7.3 started to ship (the largest model in this series). We installed a system in a customer’s home and I went out to calibrate the theater. The new 7.3 was even more of a shocker than the smaller models. This system sounded far better than many more expensive systems we had done. It became really clear that B&W had a huge success on their hands.
Part of what makes the CT system so appealing is that all of the speakers are 10.5” deep, including the subs. And speaking of the subs: to save space, the sub amp is a separate component. This gives you the advantage of having all of the adjustments at your fingertips rather than at the back of the sub. To say these subs are great is a big understatement. They are so fast, yet go so deep, it’s purely incredible. I liked them so much I put two of them in my own theater. (And I think I am going to add two more for even more bass impact!). They come in 10”, 12” and 15” models.
The only thing lacking in this great CT line up was something to address the in wall and in ceiling needs of many people. Well, lo and behold, at the last CEDIA show, B&W presented the new in ceiling and in wall versions of every single model! They have developed a unique, patented way to get these into a wall and have great performance. They have a folding back box to fit into the wall! (A back box is a real must have if you want to have consistent performance from your speakers.) The new CT in wall and in ceiling speakers are shipping now. We will feature a system with these in our new Charlotte location.
I cannot express in words how much fun it is to own a great home theater system. It’s just a totally different experience than most people get when watching a movie. You can understand the ultra important dialog track with ease. As a matter of fact, on a great system you can even hear subtle nuances of emotion in the performers voices that transport you further into the movie. A properly calibrated system with good subwoofers gives you bass impact that sweeps you away. And of course, the front, surround and rear speakers envelop you with great sound. One final great fact is the efficiency of these new speakers. This has two advantages: the first being they are dynamic as all get out. The second is, you do not need a monster stack of amps to really get them going (of course that can make them even better, but is not necessary). The new CT series from B&W brings a truly immersive home theater experience to a much wider audience with enormous value for its price.
We invite you to our Raleigh or Charlotte showrooms to experience the difference. In each store we have a basic system set up using the entry level 7.5 speakers and a bigger one with the 7.3 series. I am 100% positive you will be 110% impressed with how much great sound you can get for the money!