Aerial 7T/6 vs Vandersteen Quatro/Treo/2Ce Sig II


I am still trying to make up my mind on which Vandersteen speaker to get. Leaning towards 2Ce Sig II.

I came across Aerial Acoustics speakers and read the reviews of 7T and 6 which caught my interest. I do not think I can audition them where I live so I have no way to compare them to Vandersteen.

I was caught by the reviews mentioning how Aerial Acoustics speakers throw a large soundstage and very good with instrument placing/imaging.

I want to hear from people who have spend good time with both Vandersteen and Aerial speakers on how they compare.

Any insight is helpful
geek101
My first recommendation would be to not buy speakers going just by reviews. If you end up with something you like it will be more of an accident than anything else.

Given the choices you list, I would go with the Model 2's. I have them in my main system and know them very well. If you match your components well and set them up properly, they will sound amazing. The Quatro and Treo are also very good but I like the Vandersteen's that don't have a traditional box. You'll save a lot of money also. The 2's will do most things better that the Aerials. The Aerials will play louder and go a little deeper in the bass.
My first recommendation would be to not buy speakers going just by reviews. If you end up with something you like it will be more of an accident than anything else.
I agree! Go listen and decide for yourself.

I have 2 friends using Vandersteen 2's and every time I listen to them, I want to rip the sock out of the drivers. It's muffled, peaky ... can't stand them.

Not familiar with the Aerial 7T but did demo the 7B when I was shopping speakers for my sister. The 7B's were muffled compare to the B&W which was too bright and hard. The salesman heard the same and suggests driving them with brighter components. The 7B is NOT 7T so go listen for yourself.
Zd 542
Every time I read what you write I say to myself that guy is spot on.
But you gota hear the just launched Vandersteen CT Quatro.
Cheers JohnnyR
I love , my vandersteen treo . I had bought , John , thank you for , selling me them !! Very good!!!!! Buy !!! .
During my audition of the Aerial, I was disappointed.
OTOH, I would like to hear from those who have compared the Vandy TREO and QUATTRO...
I've heard the old Aerial 7's twice in the same room with different electronics. Once with lower powered tubes (boring)and then again with high current solid state (wow). So, be careful when you audition--their sound can vary considerably. On the Vandy's, John will kill me but I'm no fan of the 2's. The Quatro's however are very nice indeed and the 5's are one of my all time fav's--wish I could afford them and they were prettier to look at.....
Hi Dodgealum,

How different is the sound from Aerial compared to Vandersteen in your opinion?.

thanks
Right On! Dodgealum.

I really wanted to like the Aerial, it was paired w/ ML gear, so no quality problems there. Must have been the acoustical space?

As far as Vandy goes, I have had the pleasure of demoing a few variations of the 2 series, up to, the 3A. These demoes have been w/ many different combos of gear. The Vandy is most flexible in that manner.

Maybe one day, I will get a chance to compare the 3A to the 5A. Then, the Treo against the Quattro...
I can't comment on the Vandies. But I got a good listen in with the Aerial 7Ts in a superb room with a superb system. I auditioned Magnepan 3.7Rs the same day in the same room with the same equipment. The Maggies ran circles around the Aerials, at half the price. I also wanted to like the 7Ts. I have had maggies for 20 years and I wanted to try a dynamic speaker. The Aerials were a big disappointment. I actually liked Dali Helicon 400 Mk IIs much better than the Aerials.
Geek--there are really too many variables and too much time since I've heard these speakers to make worthwhile comparative statements. I do think that folks could provide some more guidance if you shared your budget, associated equipment, room dimensions and sonic preferences. Armed with that you might get some helpful suggestions about the Aerials and Vandys (as well as other brands/models that you might want to check into).
The Aerials were a big disappointment. I actually liked Dali Helicon 400 Mk IIs much better than the Aerials
Dali Helicon 400 is exactly what I ended up buying for my sister. It's sounds very good with a Krell amp.

My sister is not an audiophile but growing up with 2 audiophile brothers, she appreciates good sound and know the difference. Her husband, well ...
Hi Dodgealum,

My current setup is Paradigm Studio v3 40s in the front, Paradigm Studio v3 20s in the back. With Aperion sub , Paradigm Studio Center and all speakers powered by Marantz SR7005.

My budget is flexible from 10K to 15K, I am willing to go with used speakers and components. I want to start with Speakers and buy matching components. Want to use Marantz SR7005 for Movies but front speakers will be powered by separate amps, leaning towards Rogue Audio, Emotiva etc for amps.

My room size is 24ftx22ftx8ft. Speakers will be placed on the 22ft side.

I listen to classic rock and enjoy movies a lot with my family. I want speakers that disappear when I listen to music. Large soundstage, clear separation of instruments and accurate voice reproduction is important for me. I love the sound of Vandy's I only auditioned 2Ce Sig IIs and 3A and I liked 3As. I am unable to audition Treo/Quatro/5A with the Vandy dealer that is close to my place. I like listening to low volumes btw.

I have heard B&W CM9s, Dynaudio Focus series, Monitor Audio, Kef, Theil 3.7 and they all did not even come close to Vandys as far as my ears are concerned.

I can audition Vandy Treo/Quatro/5A and Aerial Acousitcs from different dealers if I drive 10 hours each way. I want to hear what folks here feel before I put my wife through that drive :).

thanks in advance.



Curse this thread!!

The talk about how great the Dali's are, especially along with the negative comments regarding Aerial Acoustics, has me wondering if I should consider the Dali speakers for my home theater.

I built my HT speaker system around the Aerial Acoustics CC5 center (im actually using the LR5 vertical version) channel speaker. To finish it off I used identical LR5 speakers for my left and right.

Does Dali make a center that will at least equal the Aerial CC5? Ideally I would like to use identical speakers for left, right and center. Any recommendations for what I might consider/audition?

At this point in my life I am 75-80% home theater.
JonnyR,

Thanks for the compliment. I have a great deal of respect for you and your store. I'll definitely stop by and listen to the new CT.

Knghifi,

"I have 2 friends using Vandersteen 2's and every time I listen to them, I want to rip the sock out of the drivers. It's muffled, peaky ... can't stand them."

Good call. No one uses socks to tune speakers anymore. They probably didn't even wash them with the special soap for best thread consistency. Vandersteen gives you much better setup options. Why don't you go over and remove the socks, position the speaker, set the back tilt using the formula Vandersteen gives you and make any necessary adjustments to the 2 gain settings on the back of the crossover. Show your friends how to set them up right. They'll thank you for it.
"I am unable to audition Treo/Quatro/5A with the Vandy dealer that is close to my place."

That's sad. Also, not to be judgmental, but powering $10k - $15k speakers with an Emotiva amp???

"I want speakers that disappear when I listen to music. Large soundstage, clear separation of instruments and accurate voice reproduction is important for me."

Well, that certainly is in Vandy territory. To get what you're looking for and to get the most out of them you'll need good amplification and a good preamplifier (haven't seen you mention what you use for a preamp -- what are you using?). Not sure how they do at low volumes. I'd also mention Joseph Audio Perspectives in your price range if you can find a dealer. Not sure how they do at low volumes either though.

If you're currently using a prepro you could insert something like one of the new Rogue integrated amps (or many others) for stereo and use your prepro and Marantz amp to run center/surrounds in HT duty. Not hard to integrate all that into one system, and you'd have the best of both worlds. Best of luck.
Hi Soix,

Emotiva is one of the many options, the reviews seem to suggest the XPAs and XPRs are more than match for Vandys. I am impressed by Rogue Audio too either will work fine with me.

ARC or Ayre gear seems to be favorites with respect to using them with Vandersteens but I do not want to get them unless I can notice a difference that will justify the cost bump.
Good call. No one uses socks to tune speakers anymore. They probably didn't even wash them with the special soap for best thread consistency. Vandersteen gives you much better setup options. Why don't you go over and remove the socks, position the speaker, set the back tilt using the formula Vandersteen gives you and make any necessary adjustments to the 2 gain settings on the back of the crossover. Show your friends how to set them up right. They'll thank you for it.
Zd542 (Threads | Answers | This Thread)
I got the same advice on my Bose 201. After setup, it destroyed KAISER KAWERO. I guess the instruction works for all speakers. Unfortunately my friends traded them in after 6 months NO thanks to me. I guess with friend like me, who needs an enemy. LOL!!! Many Thanks for the suggestion.
Knghifi,

I'm glad to see you didn't take post too seriously. I wasn't sure because it took you a while to respond. Unfortunately, my comments on Vandersteen setup holds true in many cases. So many people who have them fail to get the best out of them because of it. (Just to be clear, I'm not trying to fault you or invalidate your opinion in any way. Your take on the speakers is just as valid as mine. I'm just saying that poor setup is possible reason you, or your friends, didn't get optimal results. Nothing more.)

"I got the same advice on my Bose 201. After setup, it destroyed KAISER KAWERO."

Just think how good it would of sounded if you had a pair. By the way, who's KAISER KAWERO?

Geek101,

I won't tell you how to spend you money, but I would suggest you rethink your approach. Going by reviews and opinions alone is no way to buy equipment. I know that for a lot of people, demoing audio equipment is not always easy. I say that even it is a big inconvenience, do it anyway. Its worth it. Think of not only how long it took to earn the money, but the amount of time invested in research and education on your part. You owe it to yourself to get it right. Personally, I won't hesitate to make a long trip if I have to. I guarantee you that the system you build in your head won't be the system that ends up in your listening room if you do otherwise. I know from experience.
Given your total budget, I think the 3a sigs are an excellent choice, though the Treos will have a higher WAF.
Geek,

Ayre is over-priced gear, at best.
@Jafant, so what's better at the same price points? I assume we're talking about their 5 series.

I might try a Rogue Cronus Magnum with KT-120 power tubes together with some 3A sigs. With the KT-120s, the Cronus can put out about 100W. That's sort of a downsized version of my own system.

The last time I shopped for speakers, Arial was my second choice, but the model that I thought had adequate bass was a couple grand more than I wanted to pay at the time. I do think that Vandersteen gives better value sonically. The two to compare are the Arial 7T and the Quatro Wood (they no longer offer the cloth Quatros). But the cost of these doesn't leave much over for electronics.
Dave -

ARC, CJ and Rogue Audio to name a few...
Geek,

See if you can audition the new Intuitive Design Speakers. They have a new floor stander coming out for 7K. 7ft transmission line, flat to 28hz, 93db sensitivity.

I have been using this designer speakers since 1992. Huge sound stage, lightning quick, cabinets made from granite so no cabinet resonance. These are about as close to a cross between a cabinet speaker and maggie out there.

I would put them up against any speaker in the 25K price range.

Also see if you can listen to any eXemplar audio gear. John Tucker has a new line out and it's incredible for the $$$. He will be at Rocky Mountain if you can make it.

I realize that both of these brands are pretty boutique, but what they lack in name recognition, they more than make up for it in terms of performance for the $$$

Best of luck.
I have had Vandersteen 5A's driven by Ayre for a number of years....i have heard many systems during that time and none have made me think of changing. (though some have made me laugh)
I just got a used Ayre AX7e from a friend who sold it to me and I can't believe what I've been missing. Sorry,I've heard a ton of great gear in the last few months from Pass ot M/L to Ayre to everything else that's out there it seems. I have heard so many speakers in the under 20k range that my head is spinning. I have Proacs and none of the speakers made so much of a difference that it made me want to sell my Proacs at a loss and then buy a much more expensive speaker. .....that is until I ended up at Audio Connection when I was in town for a family wedding and had a few hours to kill. Richard the proac distributor told me to go there to hear the new Proacs so I did. I heard the D series and they sounded really good. Much better than what I have now and for 3k or so, I was probably ready to just get them after I sold me current gear. Then John ask me to listen to the Vandy Treo's. The set up isn't perfect in the front of his store, but damn did they sound real. Just musical and plenty revealing. They did everything, and it made me realize that I do want and miss real bass. Not tubby boom boom crap, but articulate bass. The piano sounded correct, the voices were beautiful and full of life and air. The plucked strings on the guitar and bass could be heard. I was in shock as I wanted Vandy's when I first heard them in SD in 83 and that's what I went to buy when I was ready in 90 or so. I ended up walking out of the store with Proacs and every family member ended up with the smaller Proacs for their systems too. Now I go in expecting to buy Proacs and I'm saving up and selling off to get Vandy's. The Paradigms Signatures, Dynaudio, Legacy, Focals, B&W, PSB, Clearwave, Saleh as well as many others have been auditioned and none did all that the Vandy's do. I love the Treo, but if I could afford the Quattro I'd go that route. I can barely afford the Treo's, so that's it for me, lol. I didn't like the Aerials or Totems for their respective prices. I heard all the lines demoed with equipment the store though was best. Not sure what it was, but just wasnt' a big fan of either. This is why we all have different ears and need to listen for ourselves. I used to heard all new gear for years and years and I knew the little differences, but things have changed a lot in the last few years and you really need to go listen as much as you can. I'd never buy anything without hearing it now. No way as it's too expensive to make a mistake and you must listen to things as a system I feel. JMHO
Just back from a trip to NJ to see John at Audio connection. Got to meet Mark and "Tony" from this board too. that was awesome. We spent all day and well into the night listening to everything. I can honestly say that the Proacs, Maggies or B&W's didn't come close to any of the Vandy's. The Quatro CT is SPECIAL. I'm getting the Vandy Treo non CT) as I can't afford the CT, but WOW is all I can say. They Quatro is a serious speaker. We heard the differences in the AR CD 7 and 9. The Sky interconnects were an awesome set up with it. Got to hear vinyl too and boy was that a treat. The Quatro CT does so much more than the Treo, but it's a lot more money. The3aSigs were run by the same Ayre and AR gear and they sounded great. You don't have to over spend on speakers when you can get the lower Vandy's and buy great electronics and connect it all with high quality cables.
The Treo's are more refined than the 3aSigs. They don't go quite as deep, but they go plenty deep. i don't think I'll feel like I'm lacking at all. The staging, imaging etc.. are all top draw on all the Vandy's, but what separates them from the others are their musicality. YOu can listen all day and they just sound like you are there. The Maggies floated the soundstage. I know they needed a resister in there as they were H O T on top. We then heard the 3.7 and they were MUCH better, but not my cup of tea. They were very dependent on the electronics. VERY. Non forgiving is the term I'd use. i know the reviews love them, but I have never gone by reviews as most just don't tell the whole story. I'll take the Vandy's that give you the percussive attack and decay. They put space around the notes. That's where they separated themselves. Not knocking the other speakers, but I've owned Proacs forever and have loved them, but the new Vandy's just seem much better.
Keep me posted when the Treo'arrive!

-Jay
Hopefully this week Jay. Also, it looks like I'm getting a Bellari phono pre and VPI 16.5. Eventually when I sell the rest of my gear, I'll get a new TT/Cart adn sell off my Rotel TT with the Van den Hul MM1 cart which is in great shape still. WHen I went down to Audio Connection, John put on vinyl and made me wanting to hear my LP's again, lol.
Yes. Ctsooner we had some fun with John and Mark, hearing all the systems and different combinations. Hopefully the next time you're in the area you can come by my place which is 5 mins from Audio Connection and do some listening. John really had the 3ASigs singing!! The electronics up front were great: Ayre and ARC with AQ cabling. I've got 3Asigs and Maggie 1.6's here and it's the best of both worlds for me. I like them both so................................broke but happy!!
Tony, yes it was great and next time we need to set it up ahead of time. If he can get my Treo's sounding even better than that, I'll be blown away, lol....my AX7 and front end aren't in the same league as what we heard, but my vinyl set up could be nearly as good up front. Can't wait.