Ayre & Vandersteen

All--I have Vandersteen 2CE Signatures (new model) that I really do like and work very well in my 8 sided, acoustically correct room.
I am using an Ayre AX7E, Ayre QB-9 non DSD version, Mac Mini, Amarra, Verastarr Power cords and interconnect.
Has anyone used any other hi quality integrated as I believe that this amps is a bit underpowered, looking for more control, detail, etc.
I have very little experience with Vandersteen.
The new Ayre AX-5 is three times the price of the AX-7E, is it really worth three times the performance?
I am willing to go to tubes if necessary and prefer integrated amps, Thanks
I would stay with Ayre. I know you are asking for an integrated, but I would consider a V-5. That's what I use on my 2's. You definitely won't have a power issue with one of those. Also, make sure your speakers are properly setup going by the manual and double biwire them. It makes a very big difference with Vandersteen.
I just thought of a great integrated for you, if you must have one. A BAT 300IX. It has a lot more power than your 7 and 3 preamp options; 1 SS and 2 tube. I'm sure the Ayre 5 series integrated is great as well, but I havent heard it so I can't recommend it.
I have owned Vandy speakers for many years, and have found
they aren't too fussy about the amp paired with them,
1. the amp has enough power to "wake them up" --
Vandy's are a bit reticent at low volumes;
2. the amp is tonally well-balanced, since Vandies can be a
bit too "rich"in the mid-range.

I know that Richard V. often uses Audio Research amps with his
speakers at audio shows, so you might try to borrow an ARC amp
for a trial run in your home. From my own experience, I know
that both Bryston and Ayre amps pair well with Vandies. I
currently own the Bryston 4B-SST2 and I think it's terrific
with my 3A Sig's. Not sure about your budget, but the Bryston
B-135 SST2 is a fine integrated amp that should be on your
audition list.
Getting very good sound out of my 2CE signatures using a Line Magnetic 211IA Valve Integrated.
32w Ultra Linear 12w Triode.

Nothing much in it compared to my other amp set up.
Audio Research SP16 Pre and Opera Consonance Cyber 800 Mono Blocks 78w Ultra linear.

Sure the Operas wake them up but they sound so seductive on just 12w in triode on the other amp.

So as always nothing dots all the "i"'s.

Contrary to popular belief I do not find these speakers to be power hungry they are a very easy drive IMO.
And the Valve amps in no way make them to syrupy in the mid range.
Have had the neighbours complain so to speak, driving them with an 8w cheapie Chinese Amp.

Perhaps it is just me my room and the music I like.
These speakers do respond very noticeably to any changes you make.
Best thing I ever did was simply packing the stands with sand. And placing them on Granite slabs on my wooden floor.
On spikes with pucks. Can't believe they were the same speakers transformed them, detail, bass, sound stage integration the works.
I have the Ayre integrated and it's the best amp I've had in my system. I have quicksilver silver mono's that I ran with the full function Quick pre and they sounded AWESOME with Vandy's. They are typical tube gear and they are high current and sound like 200watt amps even though they are 90 per side. As much as I loved the Quicks, I'm selling them as I like the ease of the Ayre. AR are a great choice with Vandy's and Quick's are perfect for a pair ot 2c's as they are less and come pretty close to the AR's if set up properly. Ayre and Aestetix are two of the upper amps that mate well. I'm going to be using the same Ayre integrated with new Vandy Treo's as the amp can work magic. You may get different sound from a new amp, but not sure how much better you can go with those speakers. It may be time to look into the 3sigs or even Treo or Quattro depending on your budget. That amp sounds awesome on the Treo or Quattro's as I've heard it on both. Plenty of power unless you listen to ear splitting volume. JMHO
I owned an AX-7e integrated and if the AX-5 sounds anything like the new KX-R Twenty (given that they both use Ayre's new diamond output stage), then you are looking at a significant performance upgrade that imo more than justifies the price differential.
I have heard both on the Vandy Treo's along with Music Hall DAC and AQ cabling throughout. The AX 5 is worlds better, but it's also a lot more money. If money isn't a problem, then I would get the 5 in a heartbeat. I think all Ayre products sound similar, but the differences are huge in regards to the separates from what I have heard. I've heard every Ayre product in top systems and with all types of speakers and they always sound 'right'.
I agree with Oros. I have a Line Magnetic Audio 216IA and it makes the 2CE Sig IIs sing. I also have a Parasound A21 that drives about 300 watts to those speakers as well when I swap them. I cannot tell the difference, both sound great. I would give the edge to the low power LM Audio.
Maybe you should think about an Ayre VX-5 and K-5xe? That's the combo I have with my Vandersteen Quatros and it's fantastic. Remember that the better Vandersteens require filters and that it's better to have separates for that. Not that much more money, but more power and you'll be ready for Treos or Quatros (might as well just buy those because, frankly, subs are a big deal and you'll go nuts trying to figure out where to stick two subs after you realize the Treos need them).
Bob, thanks. I"m not great at reaching out though, lol. I'm set on the Vandy Treo's, but am always looking and listening.