Move to NYC Apt -- Vandersteen 3A Speaker Woes

Making a career move which will involve moving from a house in Pennsylvania to an apartment in New York City. Don't know how large the apartment will be yet but, from what I've heard, most aren't very big -- even at fairly high rents.

My issue ... I'm currently running a pair of Vandersteen 3A Sigs plus two Vandersteen 2Wq subs, and I love them. Can't help but think this is going to be a problem in an apartment. Thoughts ? My neighbors are going to hate me, aren't they ?
Some NYC apt's at HIGH rents have large rooms. Unless you live on the ground floor, down firing sub woofers are a no-no. Truth be told I think your going to have trouble fittng this rig in. My experience with Vandy's are that they are quite critical of room and nearby walls. It might work. Though they are out of business perhaps one of the Meadowlark speakers might be somewhat similar but easier to fit in. NYC is a great place, enjoy all the great live music available. Good luck.
Invest in a real good pair of head phones. Otherwise, you'll be evicted. Good luck! Manhattan is alot of fun.
It really depends. When I moved to an apartment in Manhattan from a big house in the suburbs, I had a similar concern and I ended up disposing of a lot of stuff that I later regretted. You can always sell/swap it later when you know exactly what you are facing. For example, my building is constructed of reinforced concrete and no one has ever complained about low frequencies, not with my old monster subs and not with my big rig now. So, don't presume or limit your options until you have to.

Good luck.

I second that response - NYC is a fab place to live, for music and many other reasons. I have a rental in midtown which is great as it's a 1 bed penthouse in an older building. I don't share a wall with anyone and the floor seems to be about 3 feet thick, so I occasionally crank it.

If you are worried about noise, try getting into a pre war apartment building, or a new one which you can thump the walls real hard - many are fire proof such that they have very solid concrete walls. Make sure you don't live in a brownstone as you can hear lots through the wooden floors. One of the other long time tenants in my building was saying how the workmen used to fill between the floors with clay - if true that stuff will absorb a lot of sound.

The pre wars also have bigger rooms I think, whereas the newer ones tend to be a bit cookie cutter. Either way it's not cheap, but I always think you should pay up for at least a couple of years to get the best out of the city - you only live once (and you don't need a car here either so that cuts the expense down).

I also have a nice pair of headphones (Senn 600s) for when I fell the need for a bit of late night listening at volume...
The cool thing about NYC, is you can head out your door and hear the real thing at a club, or some other venue.

I've been wanting a pair of Vandys, but just haven't had the room, so I went with Ohm Walshes - no shipping, I picked 'em up in Brooklyn myself - very close to Manhattan. They're easier to place in odd NYC spaces, but I still have to keep the volume down to keep the co-op board happy.
if your apt dont work out with the rig you can get a house over in jersey alot cheaper than a shoe box in manhattan & be a short drive from the city but i also agree not to jump the gun & dump any gear till you know exactly what your up against.

I live in NYC in a corner apartment. It was built in the late fifties solid concrete construction. So crankin the tunes has never been a problem. The outside noise can also distract people from your system. If you like your speakers try to bring them.
My advice- being a manhattan apartment dweller is to leave the vandy's in storage ot at a friends house. Leave most of your furnature as well, or sell it.

You will be so much happier living with just a few pieces of well placed and right sized furniture.

There are so many small towers or mini monitors with subs that sound great. Dont overload your space. Things will image better with breathing room. Every thing I buy I must decide if I really have room for or if I can get rid of something else.

Enjoy this great city though (except for the rents that is- which are for the most part (for new tenants)are simply insane)

I live in a NYC midtown apt and have Vandy 3A Signatures there but without the subs. I did have problems with an elderly woman living next door, but she moved. I do live in a reinforced concrete building and what I have found is that it prevents you from hearing the bass but allows your neighbor to hear unbelievable levels of it, so I am not sure that it is an advantage. She invited me in her apartment once while my system was playing at quite moderate levels. The level of bass frequencies that she was receiving was incredible and it was hard for me to ignore or minimize, even though it was in my best interest to do so.

Otherwise and since, there have been no complaints and I do listen to music at volumes pleasing to me, which I would consider to be loud-but-not-deafening levels. As far as space is concerned, you may have trouble with placement in your room depending on the size and shape and whatever other furniture you have to get in there.

For your reference, a good-sized living room in Manhattan would be 22' x 12'. There are plenty much smaller and even plenty much larger. It all depends on what you luck upon and of course, what you can pay.
I agree with all the prior, NYC is a great place... I grew up there, well actually in northern Jersey, but spent most of my free time there. I also agree I wouldn't sell anything until you are there. I would warn you about the subs though,

I met my neighbor the day I bought my sub in my concrete condo a few years ago.... He wasn't too happy to meet me that day.
I live in NYC, and have lived here in an apartment for over ten years. As what the others have said, the degree to which your Vandy's fit in your new living room and the extent to which your music bothers others will vary based on the building and your neighbors.

I have a pair of Vandersteen 1C's, and also have a modest sub by Mirage as part of a separate home theater set-up. Everything fits, but I have a large living room. You may also wind up with a large living room. What's usually small in Manhattan are the bedrooms and the closets and bathrooms. Living rooms vary, but can be nicely sized.

I would not sell your beloved speaker combo until after you have found the right apartment that is meeting your other criteria (cost, location, lay-out, space, etc.). Then, see if you have the room for your speakers and if you do, then if it bothers others.

I have a nice pair of headphones, too (Audio Technica L3000s), but use them to avoid bothering my wife and kids, not my neighbors. So, I would not be too concerned...yet. And, if you do find out that more diminutive speakers are in order, there are many hi-fi stores in the city from where you can shop. And unrelatedly, but along the lines of what others have mentioned, I love living in NYC and there are quite many live music options. Good luck,

- walkman
Keep in mind that a 20Hz note has a wavelenght of about 34 feet. In other words to hear it you have to be 34 feet away from the speaker. That's why you could not hear the bass loudly, but your neighbor could. The second node of that note is at 68 feet away from the speaker....possibly irritating someone else! :) I agree with others: keep them until you know for sure what's up, since they are outstanding speakers!
If you're concerned about sound transmission, watch out for loft apts in old industrial or commercial buildings that have been renovated, unless the building has full concrete construction. The floors/ceilings in such places are often exposed wood, and even when not, are notorious for passing sound. I work in Tribeca where people pay millions of dollars for luxury lofts and you hear a lot of complaints about this. They feel like their neighbors are in the same space with them. I've heard of people putting the unit back up for sale after a few weeks, only because of sound transmission. (The inflating real estate market of the last few years has partially covered up the problem, because you can flip the unit if you're not happy.) But whoever is still there will hear you, and you will hear them, MORE so than in many modern or cheaper accommodations.
11-01-05: Hpims wrote: "Keep in mind that a 20Hz note has a wavelenght of about 34 feet. In other words to hear it you have to be 34 feet away from the speaker."

That's simply nonsense.

Yes, the comment about the 20Hz note is nonsense. The wave may not form, but the pressure change will be sensed as though bass waves are propagating through the room.

My Stax Omega II headphones have amazingly deep bass response. Given the size of the "room" I should hear only upper midrange on up if the space between the driver and my eardrum had to be at least as long as a full wavelength for a particular pitch to be audible.
Learn how to return obscenities in 20-to-30 different languages and keep the gear as is.

Best regards,