Vandersteen 2CE v NHT 2.5?? or ??

I currently have Vandersteen 2CEs and have always respected Vandersteens but have never been really sure they are the thing for me. I would like to compare them to NHT 2.5s and Infinity kappa 7.1s. My usual way is to buy them and put them side by side and decide then the loser leaves however $$ issues make that unlikely so I have to ask for opinions to give an idea . Thanks
F6e18d2c 5f80 4dd4 8710 9d2e652702d3geph0007
I had the 2.5's and I'm pretty sure I heard the Kappa 7, but it was a long time ago. I feel the 2CE's are in a completely different league. Before you get rid of them, I would make sure you have them set up properly and matched to electronics that can do the speaker justice. Its very easy to change the sound of Vandersteen if there is something you don't like about them. You would also loose the set up features that make the speaker so unique. It would be helpful if you list the rest of your system.
I've owned nht and vandersteen, although at different price points. Overall, the wattage efficiencies of the speakers are similar. In my experience, the vandersteens sound more open while the nhts gave a much tighter presentation. I didn't really think one was better than the other. The Vandersteens were better at jazz and softer material, while the nhts did a bit better on rock. Both fine products.
I've owned both the Vandy 2C and NHT 2.5i. Different presentation, the 2C more laid back and refined the NHT is a bit aggressive in the upper mids, somewhat shouty and a more hi-fi, "you are listening to a speaker" presentation. The Kappa 7's are very nice if you are looking at a pair in good condition. Keep in mind that they require a high current SS amplifier to come alive. Also how old, they may need some work but have a lot of potential. I always liked the Kappa 7 and 9s.

I agree with Zd542, maybe you haven't realized the potential of the 2CEs. As is often the case, user's will give up and blame one thing or another without really understanding the underlying cause. This may not be your case but if it rings true you might want to talk to a dealer intimately familiar with the 2CE, John Rutan of Audio Connection perhaps?
"This may not be your case but if it rings true you might want to talk to a dealer intimately familiar with the 2CE, John Rutan of Audio Connection perhaps?"

Very good idea. John is the best Vandersteen person I know of. I bought my 2's from him. One thing I forgot to mention is that you may be able to upgrade your 2's to Signature 1's.
Thanks I wish i could get them together
Setup is not the problem I worked in the biz and know how to set things up. I have had Vandersteens before. Vandersteens are a love or respect but not for me deal. There are entire threads on here about that. They are not for everyone by any means. I have read every review I can find on the 2CE and 2CE sig and in some the general message is these are really good but not my cup of tea. I think ST in Stereophile comes right out and says that in about the 2CI. A great speaker but not for everyone. I do not think it is a matter of better as much as different and that is what I am tring to get a general idea of.

The comments about the NHT being a little HiFI make some sense to me just from what I know.

What if we throw Von Schweikert VR2s into the mix How do you feel about that?

Geph0007, I agree with you, Vandersteens are great speakers, but not my "cup of tea" as well. It might be helpful if you would state what difference in the sound you are looking for and the type music you listen to the most.
I have my friends VR2s here as he moved to 33s. I had tried a pair back in 2009 and I swear I prefered(refinement aside) my old Polk Monitor 10s.
I like the tonal color of the VR2s as it reminds me of most other speakers The Vandersteens tend to be a little darker but when one goes from the VRs to the 2Ces the stage really opens up in height and things seperate. I just listened to part of a rock concert from Palladia. It just sounded more open and real on the Vandersteens then the VS VR2s. However itwas but alittle more wooly on the 2CEs.

The Kappa 7.1 may be the one to try and compare. I am going by what is in my area and they are all close in price

As for the sound I am looking for?? I still enjoy my Monior 10s from 1980 flaws and all. They just sound like music and you get into it. Very open midrange and 3D sound. Bass is strong and goes very low but a little sloppy. Overall not as refined as the others in this group but there is a reason hy alot of folks really love them.

Had Infinty CS 3009s briefly Very cool but bass was to much. I would thnk the kappa 7.1 would be tighter and better.
I'm firmly convinced many spend thousands on this and thousands on that when what they really need is a bigger amp.
Given the choices above, I'd choose the Vandy's, but they're not for everyone. What do you like about the Vandys, and what would you like to improve upon with them?
Shubert brings up a valid point!
I currently have the 2.5's, before the metal dome tweeter, and Vandy 3A Sig. I have to agree with the comments about the hi-fi sounding of the 2.5's but with proper room placement and careful component selection some of this can be eliminated. One other thing less commented on is the 2.5's presentation, I always compare it to looking down into the soundstage, kind of like a balcony seat in a theater where as the Vandy's give a seated in the audience presentation. One way to minimize this is to get the speaker up off the ground to where the tweeter is about middle ear, you won't eliminate the looking down into the soundstage but you'll lower your presentation, ie movie theater seating with a jazz ensemble, not usually conducive with WAF . One of the best amps I found for driving these is the McCormack 0.5. The Infinity's I haven't heard in more than 20 years so can't comment.
Ig316b, I had a pair of 2.5's (metal dome)and noticed the
"balcony seat" effect as well.
It was a great design let down by inferior drivers IMO.

Mine were in a light blondish finish NHT called Sycamore, I kept them longer than I otherwise would have because of all
the 100+ speakers I've owned, they were the most beautiful to my eyes.
If you are just going by looks, I don't see how anyone could argue that the Vandersteen 2's aren't the best looking speakers ever. Well, maybe the 3's are better looking, but that's it.
HUH? Guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder alright.

So, what is attractive about a large black sock with a piece of wood trim at the top and bottom? Am I missing something?
You guys have no sense of humor.
Humour doesn't come over on internet unless you draw it out so one can't miss it. Sometimes not even then.