BeoLab 4000 Active Loudspeakers
Manufactured: 1997 - present
Designer: David Lewis
Colours: Silver, Black, Blue, Red, Green, Gold
" When it comes to sound reproduction we believe there's only one relevant parameter: How close can we come to the originally recorded sound. We feel an obligation not to disturb the intentions of the artist by adding unnatural elements to the acoustic image. Therefore all Bang & Olufsen loudspeakers share the same goal. They differ in size and shape and in terms of sound pressure level. But they are all developed to reproduce the natural, unaltered sound as closely as possible " - Bang & Olufsen catalogue 2001 - 2002
Squeeze a pair of BeoLab 4000s into the bookcase in your study and link them to the music system in the living room, via a Beolink® 'eye', which responds to your remote control. Whether it's a matter of placement or simple colour co-ordination, BeoLab 4000 turns flexibility into an art form. Placing amplifiers directly in the loudspeakers themselves not only improves sound quality but allows the manufacturer to reduce the cabinet's overall size. The result is a compact loudspeaker that can sit on a shelf, bookcase or hang, at almost any angle, from the wall or ceiling. Available in six vivid colours, BeoLab 4000 is equally at home in a stereo setup, a surround sound system or as superior multimedia speakers for your computer.
BeoLab 4000 fills the room with sound
You can’t see sound, but that doesn’t mean that it has to be totally invisible. BeoLab 4000 is formed from aluminium that’s polished until it shines like a mirror. It also comes in an array of colours - not only to suit your interior decoration, but because life itself is full of colour
Aluminium is the perfect material for BeoLab 4000. It’s light, but offers an impressive stiffness despite a thickness of only a few millimetres. It also makes it easier to obtain the loudspeaker’s unique curved form, which is important for avoiding problems with audible artefacts due to internal standing waves in the cabinet
The equation used to be a simple one; the louder the sound, the bigger the loudspeaker - but not anymore. Placing the amplifier directly into the loudspeaker allows us to reduce the overall size of the BeoLab 4000 to one third of a conventional loudspeaker with the same sound capacity.
Adaptive Bass Linearisation
Adaptive Bass Linearisation (ABL) is a process patented by B&O and is incorporated in BeoLab loudspeakers. The idea is to use the surplus capacity in amplifiers and driver units, arising by normal listening levels, for a bass extension - a sound reproduction with more bass, than the loudspeaker otherwise would be able to produce.
The function is adaptive. This means that the loudspeaker adapts to the signal it receives. Loudspeaker drivers are therefore fully exploited, without suffering mechanical or electronic abuse, and the built in amplifiers are not subjected to signals would otherwise create an overload situation.
ABL gives stunning bass reproduction considering the size of the loudspeaker in which it is incorporated, under normal listening levels.
Why build amplifiers into the loudspeakers instead of keeping them separate?
Because you can reduce the size of the cabinet volume to one-third of the size of a conventional loudspeaker with the same sound capacity. The principle is called Active Loudspeakers, and what you get is a compact loudspeaker that can play at high volume without distortion or damage to its drive units. Furthermore, when amplifier, treble and bass units are paired for the same task, they can be tailored to compensate for each other's shortcomings. What you hear is music that sounds exactly like the instrument it originally came from.
During the development phase, all BeoLab loudspeakers are put through their paces in ‘The Cube’, Bang & Olufsen’s own acoustic measurement facility. In the 12 x 12 x 13 metre room, the entire audible spectrum is played through the loudspeaker to give a perfect picture of it’s sound ‘fingerprint’.
To ensure an optimal performance every time you listen to it, a BeoLab loudspeaker constantly fine-tunes the signal received from the sound source before distributing it out to the separate bass and treble power amplifiers.
The listening panel
Since it’s humans that will listen to BeoLab 4000, it’s important that a human ear should also measure its quality. That’s why Bang & Olufsen employs its own Listening Panel to scrutinise every step in a loudspeaker’s development. If any sonic shortcomings are discovered, the whole project is returned to the drawing board.
Since no two loudspeaker units have exactly the same physical characteristics, we calibrate them individually to make certain that the sound of each and every BeoLab 4000 loudspeaker leaving the factory is identical.
Using aluminium for the cabinets is not just about looking good. Despite a thickness of only a few millimetres, it’s a remarkably strong metal that's easily shaped to eliminate the problems with audible artefacts due to internal standing waves in the cabinet.
Rule of thumb
Substitute cabinet volume (the amount of space a loudspeaker takes up) for amplifier power (which doesn’t take up much) and cabinets like that of the BeoLab 4000 can be reduced to one-third the size of a conventional, passive loudspeaker with the same sound capacity.
Flexibility in placement
You can use BeoLab 4000 as your main loudspeakers or as extras in a Bang & Olufsen surround-sound set-up. Their ability to fit into the smallest of spaces, or to be hung on the wall at almost any angle, also makes them the perfect loudspeaker for the Beolink® system. BeoLab 4000 owes its shape to the fact that active loudspeakers produce heat if they have to play for a long time without a pause. Squeeze it into a bookcase and it will still have sufficient cooling air around it, no matter how many books it shares its space with. Raised on the optional stand, BeoLab 4000 presents itself at the same angle as BeoSound Ouverture.
2007 saw the introduction of the Beolab 4000 Mk2 . Almost unheralded, the main change was the use of ICE amplifiers to replace the AB type. At first glance it would appear that the amplifiers from the Beolab 4 were being used. These offered a power output of 35W each with 2 being used. This was remarkably similar to the real output of the older amplifiers and not surprisingly the maximum sound levels achievable were not changed. Indeed it was unlikely that any customers would have noticed the change if not told.
Part numbers: BeoLab 4000 front covers
Wall mounting brackets were supplied with this model. No other mounting solution wall offered.
Bang & Olufsen's preferred supplier for brackets and stands, STBbrackets, have made a range of solutions specifically for this model. Distributed throughout the World by the Bang & Olufsen store network, the STB options add to the diversity of mounting options and positions available.
»Wall Mounting Brackets
WB3000 has been introduced to meet a growing demand to mount Bang & Olufsen flat panel speakers to the wall. The bracket (sold as a pair) is a faithful reproduction of the original which was supplied with the speakers. These beautiful speakers can now be installed on to the wall, where they are a genuine and authentic Bang & Olufsen statement.
BeoLab 4000 Active Loudspeakers Product Specifications
Market, type & introduction year:
EU 6636 1997
GB 6637 1997
USA 6638 1997
J 6639 1997
AUS 6640 1997
KOR 6641 1998
CHK 6649 2004-06
Specifications: (from Aug 2005):
Dimensions W x H x D/Weight: 28 x 32 x 13 cm / 6 kg
Cabinet/cloth finish Silver/silver, black/ black, blue/black, dark grey/dark grey, red/black, yellow/yellow
Stopped June 2005: green/green, red/red, blue/blue
Power consumption Typical 10 watts/stand-by 0,5 watts
Mains 6636 EU 230V
6637 GB 230V
6638 USA-CDN-TWN 120V
6639 J 100V
6640 AUS 240V
6641 KOR 120V
Maximum Sound Pressure Level (stereo, pair) 97 dB
Power amplifier modules 2 units, Class AB
Long-term maximum output power per module* 59 watts
Effective frequency range* 55 - 20,000 Hz
Cabinet principle Bass Reflex
Magnetic shielded Yes
Woofer 11 cm
Tweeter 1.8 cm
Net volume 4 litres
Bass equalizer Adaptive (ABL)
According to IEC 268-3 and 268-5
Connections: Power Link 2
Phono (line) 1
Link compatibility: BeoLink Active
BeoLink PC Office
Accessories Floor speaker stand 2069 Aluminium
Stand 2064 Black
Base 2037 Black
Front cover 6038 Black, Blue, Green, Grey, Red, Yellow
- BeoSound 3000 CD/Tuner
- BeoSound Ouverture CD/Tape/Tuner
- BeoSound 3200 CD Tuner with Hard Disk Drive
- BeoLab 6000 Active Loudspeakers
- BeoLab 8000 Active Loudspeakers
Created: 1st December 2006
Modified: 18th September 2012
Beoworld says: These are the gems of the B&O range. proper book shelf speakers with a decent volume and reasonable size of woofer. The Mk2 has ICE amplification but the Mk1 is probably the one to have as cheaper and possibly better sounding.