I listen to the same music, as well as New Jazz and Classical. The VSA VR-4JRs work very well for me. It is more important to consider the amplification-the amount of gain, the type (SS vs Class D vs Tube) and your room. That said, I have no desire to change speakers. With the Bel Canto M300 IcePower monoblocks I have a deep bottom end, sweet midrange and airy high frequencies. The highs have been described as too much or "forward" by some. I prefer detail, three dimensionality and soundstage, so I get these attributes with the VR4JRs. Some would prefer a more laid back presentation and in this case either tube amps or a different speaker may be advised. Only you will know when it is right.
I had the 6381 and now have the Vr4jr's....I wish I never sold the 6381's.
I find the Von's to be very room, equipment and source music sensitive. Where the Usher was a bit more forgiving with great imaging, bass and timber.
Becuse of this I have a Love hate relationship with the VR4rjs..my upstream equipment is PASS and VPI
I dont think the Vr's will last long in my set up
One man's bread is another's poison, so trust your ears. Before I brought VSRJr4's, the Usher's were one of the speakers I auditioned. Nice but no Jr4's. Be it powered by tubes or SS, there was just magic in the music.
Well I found 6381's for a great price and the VR4jr's also. I am leaning toward the Vons from what I read and heard from many people. They are both excellent. My big draw back with the Ushers, was I did not realize what kind of beasts they are. They weigh a lot even before you fill them.
I also like what I read on the Vons and there sound. I am hoping, of course buying without hearing, that they will be musically for me.
I guess I will find out shortly.
One of the big problems for me also is that I live in a part of PA that limits the audio stores within a 100 miles. So I always buy without hearing my gear first. So far I have always lucked out.
I understand your dilemma with audio stores. They are becoming rare and you take a chance on buying. I will say that the VR-4JRs are absolutely perfect in my system. I have used them in a home theater system with a VSA center, but, honestly, the two speakers alone are simply wonderful. There is a similar thread here on Audiogon relating Ushers (a previous model) and the VR-4JRS that may give you some insight. You won't know until you actually get them in your room. But, that is the same for any component. The speaker and the source are the most important links in the chain. I hope you find what you are looking for.
Don't forget that there are two versions of the 4JR. It would be worth having a good understanding of the differences. I owned the first version and it is a tremendous performer but don't know of differences with the MKII version.
I have heard Usher before but never in direct comparison to the 4JR. They were good but I was never compelled to explore Usher any further.
Well I am picking the Von's up on Sunday. I ordered some Paul Speltz Anti cables to biwire them using different taps on my McIntosh that has the autoformers. I hope it all sounds like I think or hope it will. If not I guess I will try again after giving it some time to grow on me.
I also went with the anti-cables bi-wired to the VR-4JRs from monoblocks. No doubt there is something better, but I have never owned a system that sounded better than this combination. I hope you have the same good fortune!
Well I hope as well to have a good match. I will be using a McIntosh 6850 for the amp using the 4 and 8 ohm taps on it to biwire.
How is the bass? Do you feel like you need a sub? I read in another post that the claimed 25htz was not realistic, but then I read the review and it said it was real. Any feedback?
The VR-4JRs' bass is very real. I have used several test tones and re-calibrated RS SPL meters and plotted the frequency response. Of course it is room dependent, but from my listening seat there is bass flat to 25 Hz, -3 dB at 20 Hz and -6 dB at 18 Hz. It falls off fast. I tried putting my Hsu VTF-3 on just for frequencies below 25 Hz and it didn't matter with any material I listen to. Even Planet Drum and Victor Wooten. The bass is deep, fast and tuneful if the speakers are set up properly.
Do you biwire them? Did you notice any sound changes?
Bass, I ran test tones in my room using Pink noise and a McIntosh analyzer (modela2) and the VR4jr's drop off under 60 fast. (Small room) 30hz was more then 6db down
My room isnt treated, but its prety dead and has no bass overhang.
Did you test from one or more than one position? I found that moving even a few feet away from my sitting position dropped or raised the frequencies depending upon room nodes. The devil is in the details and the speaker is capable of going lower than your readings would suggest. I believe it speaks to the placement of the speakers and your measurement position more than the design of the speaker. Of course it is necessary to use the RS meter correction or a computer/RTA software/calibrated microphone setup.
I measured at my listening position. After spending days tweeking the speakers for the best sound.
I don't own the JRs but own the SR MKIIs with MC501 monoblocks and can say without hesitation, no subwoofer necessary! The bass response is indeed very dependent on the speaker position. I have the about 4' from front and side walls and slightly towed in (room--16'x30' w/10' ceilings). The bass is deep and tight and imaging is tightly focused but throwing a huge soundstage. Not sure how Albert "mad scientist" Von Schweikert does it but all of his speakers are magical. A friend just today bought a pair of the JR MKIIs and they no doubt will be great in his system. Have fun enjoying the music.
Kind of late to the party but thought I'd add my two cents.
I have the first generation VR4JRS. I've employed several tweaks that seem to make significant sound improvements that I thought I'd pass along.
First, get rid of the spikes for the upper module and replace them with Herbies Big Fat Black Dots - Herbies even make a Black Dot kit for the VR4JRs, The VonSchweikrt Special: http://herbiesaudiolab.home.att.net/spkrfeet.htm
Second, as per the the Virtual Dynamics website DIY videos, replace the speaker driver steel screws with brass screws and tighten them with a torque screwdriver to 10-12 inch lbs tightness.
Third, replace the OEM Steel spikes with brass spikes from Parts Express @ 4/$20 although you'll need to get an adaptor from a good hardware store to fit the brass spikes to the VRs spike threads.
These simple and inexpensive tweaks that bring an improved clarity and openness to an already great speaker.