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A Vandersteen home theatre setup


Moose
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Since the main topic asked for pictures, here's my former home theatre setup, with Vandersteen 2CE Signature IIs, and a VCC-5 center channel.  I was planning on getting 1ces for the rear.  But, with the center channel and the 2CEs, the sound was so coherent and the soundstage so seamless, I decided to quit while I was ahead.  The blend of that center channel with the stereo speakers was incredible.  I used an Arcam AV8 preamp, and Arcam FMJ P-1 mono amps, one for each speaker.  This system was used every day.  It just worked beautifully.  The picture shows a brief trial of some Quicksilver amps and a CAT preamp I had a chance to try.

26332FC8-8669-4EB4-BA76-50678854BE15.jpeg

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  • 2 weeks later...

They were interesting.   My comments are based on they amps as they were lent to me.  I had no idea of the hours on the tubes, or if they were biased correctly, etc...  They had the stereotypical tube sound - lush, a big image, but not a lot of detail, a little flabby.   Very easy to listen to.  They weren't a great match with the 2s, but they worked better than I thought they would.  They seem to be aimed at a person that's a tube-roller.   They seemed to be well-built, but tweaky at the same time.   You could probably drive yourself nuts trying to optimize them.   For someone who is looking for something like that, they are kind of a deal.  The preamp was a Convergent Audio Technology, but I don't remember the model.  It had tons of gain.  It was a fun experiment.  I think the preamp and amps were $1500 total, used, about 10 years ago.

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I always enjoyed the CAT gear too lol.  My Quicks weren’t lush at all.  Bruce Brisson reworded them with his internal wire. Same with my Quick preamp. They also tossed in some wondercaps and other component upgrades. What a difference it all made. Quick, details for days etc…. It’s amazing what some designers leave on the table for the purpose of cost segment they want to play in.  

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So, you got to hear them before and after the upgrades?  That's cool!  I'm glad that worked for you.  Everything makes a difference.  You hit the nail on the head when you mentioned targeting a price range/cost segment.  It's a tough thing for a manufacturer to decide where to save a bit on costs.   It's pretty nice that you could get that performance bump with an upgrade to your existing gear. 

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The reason I love Richard's gear is that he does that cost/value proposition for us up front.  I'm still not totally sold that my Hurricane power cord makes a huge upgrade over Richards, very nice, stock cord on the amps.  I have more auditioning to do soon, lol.  

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