barb wire around the maggies to keep the kid away ;)
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vandies aren't so stable that a one-year old (estimate) can't knock them down. So, buy them, listen to them for 18 months, sell them on audiogon and buy a nice big plastic boom box that you can give to your kid a couple years after that. (Then go buy what you can afford--oh, with the kid you won't be affording any stereo equipment for a while). Good Luck!!! Tom.
the vandies are going to spound better on a wider variety of non audiophile recordings. the slight upper bass bloom(or slight boxiness)is small compromise for the weight of drums and piano. the transparency of the maggies is intoxicating, but poorly recorded material(some of the best performances are)is painful to listen to.
I've owned both Vandys (1c's and 2ci's and 2ce's) and Maggies (both MMG and 1.6). The Maggies gave short-term thrills -- amazing transparency. The Vandys provide long-term satisfaction -- eminently musical and more forgiving on less-than-stellar recordings. After many years and many audio changes, I still have Vandersteens in my system, and feel no urge to go back to Maggies.
As for the child on the way -- when my kids were toddlers, lo these many years ago, I used a portable playpen -- it's a sort of netting on an aluminum frame (about 2 feet high or so) that folds accordion-style. By folding it open in a zig-zag pattern, I could make a stable "fence" in front of the speakers, and it was pretty much acoustically transparent. Not lovely, but it kept the prying hands away.
Well, my wife and I have been talking about this (she somehow manages to take a mild interest in my audiophile obsession). I think we're going to end up combining both the stereo and the Home Theater for a while, which changes everything. I think I'm going to stick to my original plan and get the Vandies. I just think that they'll handle the double duty a little bit better. Now, if it involved higher-tier Maggies, and not the MMGs, my decision could be different.
And, as JHold mentioned, I listen to a lot of crappy recordings of music I enjoy, and want to make sure that I can still enjoy them. I've heard bad recordings through Maggies, and he's right-- they'll kill your ears. Yeah, I suppose this doesn't involve the absolute search for truth in audio, or whatever, but hey, I don't get too much time to listen, so I might as well enjoy the time I get.
Thanks for the advice, all.
I spent many sleepless nights with my first kid on my lab listening to maggies. The biggest problem is that she didn't always let me sit in the "sweet spot". Off center seating is a problem with them. The good news is that we spent so much time in front of thier replacements, coincidents, that she now loves classical at 4 years old!
The only downfall, she and her little sister are too interested in how the speakers work-lots of pushed in drivers. Keep the grilles on tight and start the kids off right!
I was in the same quandry a few years back. I had Vandy 3's. They are large and weigh 90 lbs each. I was afraid the Vandies would get knocked over and hurt the baby or the baby would totally wreck the "sock" on the Vandy.
I sold the Vandies and bought PSB 4T's. These really go well with NAD. They also have a mesh grille that is backed by a plastic honeycomb patterned support. Great when the kids push on the grille.
I am probably in the minority...but I dont think Maggies are as ruthless or as revealing as some suggest...however...as most have touched upon...their transparency is in a different league than the Vandies...although they can sound very thin with certain instruments and improper installation...the Vandies have a far more richer and organic presentation...albeit slower, darker, and at times muddy in the low end...this is a tough call...as both are very good companies that have virtually invented hi-end audio...my dealer carries both...and I really like the Maggie 1.6s...great speaker and very reasonably priced...cheers..