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The 705 S2 from Bowers & Wilkins

There’s nothing more unfair to a pair of speakers than to pull them out of the box, throw them in a room with no care paid to fine tuning the setup and just playing music. But if you just got home from your favorite hifi store, that’s probably what you’d do, right? Especially if you’re not a terribly geeky audiophile.

Our back bedroom is the hang out room in our house. It’s about 11 x 12 feet, with a couple of big wardrobe closets, and a huge comfy chair and ottoman. It’s a great little room to get cozy in, put a pair of headphones on, and curl up with a glass of wine on a cold, rainy Pacific Northwest afternoon. But since we’ve added the Naim Atom to the mix, we’ve been on a quest for a great pair of small speakers that fill the room.

Having been to the introduction of the 705s in Boston a few months ago, we knew these were going to be pretty special, but you never know for sure until you get em in your room and your system. Ok, we are kind of geeky. However, in this room, it’s the rule that whatever is placed in it sounds great without major setup. We’re trying to keep it real in this environment.

The 705S2s pass this test with flying colors. Using the very reasonably priced Cardas Iridium speaker cables, and plopping the 705S2s on the filled Sound Anchors stands, they produce glorious sound right out of the box. Of course, as with any fine loudspeaker, careful attention to fine tuning makes for even better performance, we’ll explore that shortly in a full review.