Vandersteen 1Ci , your experience?


Hi, I hope you, and yours, are all well and safe.  In going over thoughts for a 2nd system, I have been thinking of various speaker systems.  I have no experience with the entry level Vandersteens.  If you want to, I would appreciate what your experience/ thoughts are with this model.  Would most likely be using them with a Magnum Dynalab receiver, Wireworld older Eclipse cables and a mid-level Oppo SACD/CD/DVD-A player.  The reason for thinking of a receiver is a couple of decent college Jazz/Classical stations in my area.  The only other receiver experience I have had goes back some time to the Nakamichi SR-3a.  Thanks, 
whatjd
I have a pair of older 1C’s, not the newest versions, and they are great for the money (paid about $325 shipped). I was immediately pleased with them when first played; they just sounded ‘right’ to me. It was my first personal experience with Vandersteen’s, and I was smitten from the start. After getting them set-up for my room, provided a very nice deep soundstage and imaging. They are, obviously, two way speakers with a transmission line and wide/small ‘slit’ bass port on the bottom rear, which does work well overall to provide a balanced low end. Not at all ‘bright’, and the mid does a nice job of providing both mid an mid bass in a natural way. Set-up is critical for all Vandersteen’s, but the manual is very helpful. But, they do lack a bit of deep deep bass. Some call the 1&2 series ‘veiled’, but I don’t hear them in that way at all. A bit ‘warm’? Perhaps, but that is my preference, so I am pleased. They do need a bit of power to fully appreciate their potential, but I think you should have that if your receiver outputs 100 wpc? But, I will stress; I’m sure the newest 1C’s would out perform my older model.

But.....I liked the 1C’s so much that I found a pair of used 2CE Sig I speakers literally 2 months after I purchased the 1C’s. I liked them so much I wanted ‘more’, and particularly the dedicated mid-bass and mid-range speaker along with the active acoustic coupler on the rear (directly connected to the mid-bass woofer). Essentially a 4-way speaker. I still have the 1C’s, but the 2C’s became my primary speakers immediately and have never regreted purchasing both. The 2C’s gave me more of everything I was hoping for.

I had to send one of my acoustic couplers on the 2C’s to Bill at Miller Sound for repair, put the 1C’s back in the primary locations, and although they are wonderful to have as a back-up, was thrilled to get the 2C’s back up and running with their much fuller sound.

Personally, I would look at a used pair of the Signature series of 2C’s. You can easily get a nice pair of used 2Ce Sigs for the cost of the new 1Ci’s if cost is a consideration.

If only looking at new, yes, there is a big gap cost-wise between the new 1C and 2C’s, but If you have the money, I would consider seriously the newest 2C’s. From my experience with both used, there is a big jump in performance between the two.

bkeske 
Thank you for you thoughtful remarks and suggestions.  I will do some looking/thinking on the 2c. 

Not a problem, and good luck.
The 1ci will shine with a garden variety receiver you thru exotic separates.... the ci version improves the tweeter and includes the Soundanchors- you can see them with a variety of gear. Zero fatigue, resolving, great sound stage, easy placement, etc..
btw that Nakamichi receiver was good
The Vandy 1's are pretty sweet for the price, but just like bkeske found out, you end up looking at higher models.
Though not floor standers, the Vandy VLR's are a super buy.
With either, I would get a sub to enhance the bass. The older Vandy subs are great performers and have dropped in price now that the new Sub 3 has been introduced.
Unfortunately, I don't think your MD receiver has a preamp Out.
Regarding receivers, you can probably access those stations via the internet. Buy a Bluesound Node. When monies are available, get an Ayre Codex or Schiit Gungnir DAC. Using a streamer will allow you to access Tidal and Qobuz, too.
If it were me, I would buy the Vandy speakers and switch to a Belles Aria integrated, buy some AQ cables and a Vandy sub and be done with it.-Well, until upgraditis sneaks in again.😈
Bob
You can see Vandy 1ci with a variety of gear in my vintage system


I think 1s are a great choice for a second system.  They are much less demanding of the partnering amp than the larger floorstanders.  And way more compact.  
Have heard them with modest tube gear at Johnny’s place and was dumbfounded. 
Thanks to all for your input.  

The 1ci’s were the first "audiophile" speaker I ever purchased. Being new to audio, not knowing what I really liked, and thinking I could do better, i got rid of them. I tried upgrading to the 2ce Sig II’s but found they were way too much speaker for the rooms in my house.

I then went on a journey to find the right speaker for me. Ultmately I settled on Kef R11s. A fine speaker for sure, but tend to be a bit fatiguing at times.

Recently a pair of 1ci’s fell into my lap for a ridiculously good price. I figured I would use them in a 2nd system. Turns out I like the 1ci so much, I’m thinking about selling the Kefs which cost over 3 times more than the Vandies.

The Vandies just do certain things really well. I find they draw me into the music more. They convey a size and scale to instruments that the Kef’s dont. They are non-fatiguing and I find that I listen to music for longer stretches of time.

My system now:

Vandersteen 1ci
Vandersteen 2WQ sub
Belles Aria integrated
Bluesound Node 2
Mytek Liberty DAC (just acquired an Ayre Codex as well)
Audioquest cables

Good luck to you!

Killer system, audionoobie.  So much so, that I think you should change your handle.
Killer system, audionoobie.  So much so, that I think you should change your handle.
Thanks! Can I actually do that? :)
What a nice full circle journey:-)
I have my 2CE I's in a room approx. 12'-6" x 17'-0". Personally have no problem with their size or output. When I had the chance to put my 1C's back in place, (as mentioned), it was an interested exercise, as I also wondered if they worked better in my room than I had origionally remembered after almost immediately replacing them with the 2CE's. I love my 1C's, still have them, (actually my rears now in HT mode), but as I stated, more than happy to reinstall my 2's into my room as my mains, as they just do so much more of what I want than the 1's. That said, if I only had the 1C's, I certainly would not be disappointed, and in fact, am keeping them primarily just in case at some point I have to downsize and get rid of the 2CE's. 

I guess this is a matter of personal taste, possibly set-up, and some room treatments.

I certainly did not mean in any way to 'diss' the 1C's, they are very nice speakers, but another, as I, may desire more what the 2CE's offer. Or at least consider them as an alternate. 
The acoustic coupler on the back of the 2 ( and the 3 ) make placemat in smaller rooms a bit more critical. The 2 plays quite low , especially for the $$$$ - even today ! I always found you need an amp with some grunt to control the two low end.
having said that, twos in small rooms sometimes benefit from having the high pass filter installed but set to roll off lower due to room gain. Learned that trick by speaking w Richard.
have fun, enjoy the music
jim
My my biggest challenge with the 2C’s is getting them to ’disappear’ as well as you can the 1C’s. That is important to me. Do they? Well no, not as easy as the 1C’s in my space, but after much fussing with placement, they are pretty close (source depending, some are easier than other per how the recording was mic’d/mixed). The one thing that made a tremendous difference was both some simple absorption and diffusion panels strategically placed. Actually diffusion works better in some locations to help break-up the sound waves vs absorbing them, creating a much better and wider soundstage which help to ’hide’ the 2Ce’s.

I have no real problem with overloading my room with the acoustic couplers, but as said and again, placement and acoustical treatment help. But, an interesting solution using one of Richards high pass filters. Heck, I also have two powered subs hooked-up in stereo that sit behind and adjacent to my 2Ce’s and adjusted for music, (with absorption panels that surround two sides of them so as not to allow too much pressure to build-up), not HT, so there ya go ;-)
The size of your room and help make your decision.   I recently purchased apair of 2ce II signatures and had them in a small room 10X12.  They sounded good but was curious what they would sound like in a larger room so moved them downstairs into my living room which is much larger and has a vaulted ceiling and they just came alive.  The difference was huge.  

If you have a smaller room the 1's may actually sound better but if size allow's you'll get more sound from the 2's.  
Of the rooms I could use them in, the sizes would be 14x25, 12x14 and 12x15.  I have owned and liked the following brands in the past, original Advents, Dahlquist 10, Maggie 1.6, 3.6 and 20, Martin Logan Sequel, a couple of models of Quads...and, likely, others I have forgotten.  I am an old fart and do have some rock I listen to, but I am mainly a listener of classic Jazz from the last century and some classical.  Volume is not a factor as I listen at levels that will not make the dog leave the room.  Over the last 20 years I have become more of a listener of very good small college Jazz and Classical stations...esp. ones that do not compress or freq. limit their signals.  One of the small college stations seems to have some students that have discovered American Jazz from the 30s through early 70s and it is a joy to listen to the 20-something year old "D.J.s" love for the music....and nearly half of the students are females...and do take requests for some of the great female Jazz/Standards singers. 

Take care, Jim
@whatjd ,
Those room sizes should be fine with with the Vandy's. And, given your previous brand preferences, I think you will find the Vandy sound to your liking.
B