Avalon Ascendant or Vandersteen Quatros?


I'm returning back to the states in a few months and will be looking to upgrade my 2 Ce Sig II. I really enjoyed a pair of Eclipse's I heard 10+ years ago, unbelievable soundstage and imaging. I hear the Quatros are fantastic as well. I only listen to classical and Gospel and would love to hear your recommendations. I have owned Thiel 2.3, Martin Logan Aerius, Vandersteen 1C and B&W 604 S3.

Thanks :0)

Listened to Quatros with Ayre (Pre, Amp,CD) components with AudioQuest Cables that was impressive. Lots of air. I remembered the percussion having good spacing of instruments in the soundstage of a complex piece.

Avalons are part of my fab five of speakers but I have not listened to the Ascendants.
While I am an Avalon fan, and have no doubt that they are a top-flight choice, I have not heard the Ascendant. I have heard the Vandy's on quite a few occasions (with Aesthetix and Cary components), and found them very impressive. Last time I heard them I thought that the soundstage seemed a little small, but I think it was a combination of a lower volume level and the fact that I had just listened in the next room to the Vandy 7s, which are exceptional speakers that throw a huge soundstage. On prior occasions I did not have that same feeling. The Vandersteens are very well-designed and tonally balanced, excellent speakers for the music you mention.
I heard both with Ayre, AR, Jadis, Cary gear. Ascendants never inpressed me, with any electronic. Vandersteen played pretty good with Ayre. But they are difficult in setup, without experienced and measurement electronics you are not able to maximise their performance.
Thanks for the repsonse, I'll definitely have a hear both to make a decision.

Good luck on your search. I have Avalon Ascendants and really enjoy them. I am using Herron electronics with them and to me they are very musical. The thing that impresses me about them is that the are "boring" but in a good way. After you really settle down and listen, you realize how natural and balanced they are and they produce some pretty good bass so I don't miss my sub that I used on my Utopia monitor set up.

How would you describe the sound of the two and which one would you say provide the best imaging and soundstage?


I was using the Mini Utopia with a Rel Stadium III sub. The Avalons are more open sounding with better depth in the soundstage. The Utopia's can sound a little etched on the top end. My wife who is not an "audiophile" also commented that the Avalons sounded more "live".
I'm going to go with the speaker I have always wanted, Avalon Ascendants
70marcin...what are you talking about?? The Quattros, the 5A's and the 7's are the easiest speakers to set up. They can be adjusted to accommodate the room in ways few if any speaker can be. Follow directions in the Owners Manuals, and you simply can't go wrong.

Are the Quatros MK2 wood version with upgraded drivers from the 5A any better in terms of musicality, soundstage and imaging to the Ascendants? These two speakers are high on my list for my next purchase. Based on my music selection of non-audiophile recordings of Classical and Gospel. My system consist of:

Belles 350A Ref
Belles 21A modded w/Auricaps diodes/pwr supplies
Rega Apollo
Bryston BDA-1
Dynamic Design MK2 IC X 2
Dynamic Design Bi-wire
Power e Chord
I have made my entry into the Avalon (Ascendant) lineup. It took about 10 years but it's now a reality! Bravo.. :o)
Are you still liking the Avalon's after all these months?

I have just relocated from overseas to the USA and will be taking delivery of them within a few weeks. I can't wait to get them into my system. Anyone looking for a 18 months old Vandies 2 Ce Sig II?

My Avalons are scheduled to arrive Monday...