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Many people regard the Vandersteen 2Ce / 2Ce Signature as "laid back". I think it is mellow rather than laid back, but that's quibbling over wording. What the Vandy 2Ce / 2Ce Signature does do, however, is work in a forgiving way with a lot of solid state equipment, and it may be just the ticket for you.
I second the Vandersteen nomination. I have a pair of 2Ci's and they are mellow, laid back, whatever you wish to call it. A very easy speaker to listen to and very forgiving of upstream electronics.
Scottht, I'm intrigued by your suggestion of removing the socks for a different sound. How does this change the speaker? Sometimes I think they're too mellow. Does sock removal help?
The whole speaker just becomes more alive. The sock is very thick so you wont see thru to the speaker cabinet. The cabinet is rough. That is not where the money is put into this speaker. The cabinet is stapled together and the staples w/holes are completely visable. Not a pretty sight. I did make a poor attempt at trying to finish them off. It didn't come out real good. I am not a cabinet maker.
I have many other plans and ideas that I am going to try with these.
And when you're tired of the laid back Vandersteen sound...
You ship them to Bill LeGall of Millersound! He truly performs a transformation of miraculous proportions on them. Hopefully, my friend, Vinh Vu of Gingko Audio, will chime in here to vouch for that. He runs Millersound modded Vandy 4s, and his brother has Millersounded 2s.
As far as laid back speakers go, maybe you could look into some used Dynaudio or Merlin TSM, older Dahlquists or Frieds, or some of the Totems (some of Totems can be bright).
>>However, you are VERY wrong about describing it as warm<<
Hmmmm.....VERY wrong, huh?
From Stereo Times Review --
"the VR-1 captures a lot of midrange meatiness and warmth...the treble in general seemed a bit recessed."
From Enjoy The Music --
"Bass response, while hardly room-shaking, is fuller and warmer than any minimonitor I recall."
From Sound Stage ---
"The VR-1 certainly isnt bright-sounding...couple that with the weighty bottom end and a tinge of warmth through the mids, and it all makes for a surprisingly open and full-bodied presentation."
Seems I am not the only one who describes the VR-1's as sounding, "warm."
Either we are all VERY wrong, or this is just a matter of opinion-- and you are apparently in the minority :-).
>>or recommending it as a laid back loudspeaker.<<
Here's what I wrote --
Von Schweikert VR-1. Warm, easy to drive, great sounding, imaging, soundstage, detail, etc.
>>but not laid back.<<
I did not call them, "laid back." Though the poster claims to want "laid back" speakers, I still think he should put the VR-1's on his audition list.
Spendor 3/1s, 2/3s, ProAc Response 2S. Merlins and Dynaudios are NOT warm and laid back and I think they'd sound awful with a bright, forward sounding amp. Spendors are easy to drive, much eaiser than the Vandys, but then you'd have to buy stands and, with the 3/1s, keep them at least 2 ft from the wall behind them.
>>Especially, when you enlist the help of reviewers whose opinions don't
carry much weight with most.<<
What -- their opinions carry less weight than yours? Obviously, there is a
difference of opinion and yours is only one impression among many.
>>The VR1s are NOT warm speakers<<
You mean, they don't sound that way to you.
Obviously, others disagree.
I still think the poster should put them on his audition list.
>>Personally, I feel my opinion is correct<<
>>they are wrong in their feeling<<
I think you need to do some affirmations, you need a little more confidence.
That was all very interesting for various reasons.
Maybe it's just me, but I find your posts unpersuasive. I think you're trying
for authoritative, but instead they come off just a tad....oh, let's
Sure, I'll buy your speakers -- tell me how they will sound to me.
Nice chatting with you, Trelja.
I can assure you, confidence is not something I lack.
Give them a try, Rsbeck.
Not that you'll believe me anyway, but the Frieds are also not warm. They are more open and clear. Despite being 4 ohms, you can drive them with low power tubes well, in addition to solid state amps. I'm biased, but I think the transmission line bass is a real plus. Most people haven't experienced it, but the transmission line midrange is even MORE important. The transient response is pretty amazing, significantly less smearing of the notes.
We'll have a minimonitor coming soon, so you'll have your pick of true TL speakers from $1750 up to $65K. The operation is beginning to gain traction, and our dealer network is coming around this spring.
In the spirit of "reverse thread", yes, I second Paradigm. Also, Magnepan, Martin-Logan, some Coincident Tech models, some Totem models...These are over $1000, aren't they?
I'm surprised you have Coincident in that list. I've heard a number of models and own the Super Eclipse Series II. You would have to own a very crunchy solid state amp to make the Supers sound bright. Many think the Coincidents are a little lacking in sparkle (of course, I don't. ;-)).
We seem to have lost the original poster. My take on his post is that he
believes his amp -- Nakamichi AV-8 -- is tonally "bright" and he wants to
find speakers that are tonally "warm" to counteract this effect. So, when he
says "laid back" -- I think he's talking about tone, not necessarily
But, after doing some research, I have a hunch that the brightness is a room
I went to www.audioreview.com to read what Nakamichi AV-8 owners have to
say about the unit.
Not one owner in 37 reviews called the amp "bright."
Here are some of the comments --
"Very clean, warm sound."
"The sound is sooo warm."
"Clean, warm sound, decent power."
"Warm, clean sound."
"Has that Classic Nak warmth."
"Excellent, warm, full amplifier."
Not to beat a dead horse, but "WARM" *is* in the ear of the beholder, so the
original poster may be hearing the same amp as "BRIGHT" or it may be that
the brightness is coming from somewhere else in the chain -- like the room.
It'd be helpfull if we could get a description of his listening room.
On this we finally agree, Rsbeck!
In my going completely against conventional wisdom, most solid state gear, to my ear, has a warmth, thickness, and lushness, that should not produce harshness in many instances. Tubes tend to give sparkle and brilliance that can come off as harsh or bright if one is not careful. I realize I am now going to have a lot of other people down my throat, but I have to be honest. Over the past year, I have systematically come to this conclusion. Again, I realize it goes against what has become doctrine.
I remember Nakamichi being very non offensive gear from when I used to be around it, but I didn't mention it here until you brought it up.
I have Vandersteen 2CE Sigs driven by a Tbe Audio Design 150 and a McCormack DNA-1. In this set up I can't describe them as "laid back".They sound nuetral and balanced. I had B&K equipment prior and they sounded softer but, still nuetral. I cannot remember ever hearing a speaker sound "laid back". IMO if a speaker sounds "laid back" t would seem that they are missing some of the music and the electronics should be checked to see if they are a good match..