Jump to content

First European owner of the 1ci+

Recommended Posts

Hello all, 

New european member here. 
I paid 3.250 euro, thats 3.400 dollar for my a brand new model 1's (you guys in the usa do not know how lucky you are). 
Without ever hearing one, hahaha. Big gamble, but I loved the design and the philosophy of Richard so I bought it. 
Plus I'm from The Netherlands, so Richard had that going for him:) 

The distributor told me I'm the first in Europe to have one. So that's pretty cool. 
I'm now in the process of letting them burn-in, I dailed in the placement as best I could. 
But I still think it's not yet there, but will do new adjustments when I feel they sound better. 

For now I notice a lot of neutrality and a lot of detail without the sound getting too harsh/bright.
Plus great imaging, when I close my eyes I hear the singer breath and see her/him standing in my room. 
My room is not ideal, it's small 8x12 feet and a lot of hard surfaces. I placed a lot of acoustic panels but there is still some ringing going-on when I clap my hands. 

Only thing that I notice is that the leading edge of a cymbal strike or a violin sound a little bright/harsh. 
I think this is because the speakers are not yet burned-in. Plus I'm really sensitive to it, all my other speakers had it. 
I even went to a shop where I demoed the Harbeth 5's in a fully dampened room (when silent you could hear your own blood flowing). 
And still I noticed a little brightness, and that is with a Harbeth speaker and a Chord dac (the wave actually). Not known for there brightness. 

I fixed my room to the best of my ability, there are 15 panels in there now, and that helped a lot!  
So if after some more playtime the brightness stays I will have to look at my cables and source. 

If I fix that small wee of brightness I think I will love these speakers, for now they outshine all the other speakers I have had. (Dali, Focal and Triangle - all know for their brightness 🥴)
I actually listened to music! Like two whole albums, even with that small brightness there. 
Normally I would start focussing on the brightness, and get a headache. This time I managed to focus on the music. 
I did get some fatigue, but I also felt relaxed and really enjoying the music. 

Anyway I will quit rambling. 

Amp: YBA A200 
Speakers: Vandersteen model 1ci+ 
Subwoofer: REL T7X
Speaker cables: Sommercable Elpehant, bare wire (will buy the Oyaide GYT spades, this could tame the brightness a little)
Power cable: El Cheapo Lapp cable with chinese plugs (really have to upgrade) (could also be source of that small wee of brightness)
Analogue Source: Thorens TD-165, upgraded with all new internal wire and better interlinks/powercable 
Digital source: Laptop using USB out to internal dac of the amp (this is not ideal, will bring a lot of noise into the system, so also a source of brightness). 


WhatsApp Image 2022-05-08 at 9.32.52 PM.jpeg

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Greetings Idejong,

Welcome to the forum; thanks for jumping in.  You will be hearing from folks with far more knowledge about these things than I.  But, my first question would be: is this brightness you're hearing as prevalent with records as it is with your digital source?

Also, Vandersteen speakers (like most others) do require a break-in period.  I think RV recommends 100 hours.

You're right, we are fortunate to live on the same chunk of Earth as the home of Vandersteen.  

Play on


  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome ldejong, Steve is right ,there is a break-in period. Richard's designs are true to the source; try some different recordings and see if the brightness continues. I'm sure in short order you'll be like the rest of us, amazed at just how good the music can sound.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awesome and yes, we are very fortunate to have USA pricing on excellent value Vandersteen products. I would also consider a lightweight diffuser panel or even a very lightweight wool blanket / shawl over the very reflective TV screen. Consider moving the TV out of tge room to get an idea of what it is contributing, this isn’t necessarily a long term solution but will allow you to get a more neutral baseline.

Welcome to the Vandersteen family !


  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome aboard ldejong!

Yes, the 1Ci's will have a break in period until they get used to current moving through the internal wiring, the internal components get used to this and the mechanical moving parts get used to movement.

Until the speakers break in, I would avoid critical listening and the urge to swap things out. In the meantime I would pay attention to how the sound from the speakers change. They tend to sound good out of the box, but as time goes by and the speakers settle in, I find more details emerge and the balance becomes more neutral.

I own 1Cs and run with Linn pre and power amp and connect via Transparent Plus cables/interconnects. Power cords are Harmonic Technology and Shunyata. I've used different electronics and cabling over the years, and did not experience treble issues with the 1's. I use play sand in the bases and followed the owner's manual - washer suspended by a string, to adjust the tilt. Of course, proper toe-in is in order.

For vinyl, I use a Pro-Ject RM10 with 10CC Arm, speed box, and Sumiko Blackbird HO cartridge. Transparent Ultra Phono is my analogue cable. For Digital, I'm using a Windows 10 Intel Core i3 mini tower, JRiver MC27, PS Audio NuWave DSD DAC and Shunyata Venom USB.

Here's to many hours enjoying your new 1Ci's! 😀👍


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Getting your Vandersteens correctly positioned takes some time, it is well worth it. I finally got my 2Ce's correctly positioned after some years. You have fine loudspeakers, well to spend some time working-with them.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

When they look in the room in a Feng Shui sense, then i find that they are usually too close to the wall(s).

I would probably pull them out from side, so you can just see the TV screen, and pull them forward so that the backs are even with the TV screen.
(So that they are pretty much even with that amp and subwoofer.)

One can always push them back later, but they usually sound better “more into the room” than the photograph is showing.
(And they can be moved around depending on company, or not… especially if there are some tape marks on the floor to provide the visual to get them back to their sweet spots.)

But every room is different.

Edited by Holmz
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Interesting, I had them pulled out into the room but there was literally no bass. 
I thought I was sitting on a bass 'null', but when I moved the listening position nothing changed. 

I pushed them near the wall, and the bass became much better, also image depth improved considerably. 
Will adjust the tilt and see if that improves things (right now they are tilted to around 1,5inches, I started with 2inches), and I normally use a thick blanket over my tv-screen. 
I did fill the stands with Atacama Atabites (so they are really heavy now, almost 8kg's/18 pounds). 

I have not yet listend to any vinyl recordings, will do that and report back! 

Thank you Boom Boom will not listen critically and just enjoy the process, and yes this slight thing makes me want to change everything...  
I was already eyeing cables and better spades, but will do that after breakin and see what happens. 

Thanks so far! And just saying, even with this small brightness I'm enjoying the sound immensely! 
They are by far the most refined and pleasant speakers I have ever had. And they will only get better with time. 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It seems odd that you would have bass suck out when you're using a sub. Though I do understand that it would be reinforced by placing closer to the wall.

My 2 cents-

I have always found putting the speakers further into the room seems to enhance the soundstage and making the speakers 'disappear', but every room is different. So, YMMV.

I wonder if using Vandertones is possible with the REL sub in order to dial them in?

Mr. V would know or you could call Johnny Rutan.


  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome. This is cool having a European and Australian and of course NA music lovers (and gear lovers).  Congrats on the 1's.  It's so easy to get great sound without breaking the bank and the 1's are a solid choice for sure.  I look forward to seeing your comments on the other threads we have going on and getting to know you. 


Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's very interesting what happens while the speakers break in. 
Brightness is still there, I also notice now that the high frequency is getting more forward and the mid-range is stepping back a little. 
I think the speakers are only now breaking in a little (and that is after 35 hours of playtime). So I reckon that the midrange will come back. 

I have bought the Oyaide GYT Gold spades and will attache them to the cable with Audio Note solder. 
This should give a bit more warmth, will not attache them yet, will wait say 2 weeks, to give the speakers more time to settle. 

I listened to some classical music, and for the first time in years I got goosebumps while listening! And that makes me really happy. 
My sister (she is deaf to one ear) also told me that all the music she played sounded real and she heard stuff she never had before. 
She also told me that it was less bright than the previous speakers, and I concur. 
That's interesting, I also think she may be more susceptible to the phase- and time alignement. 

She can listen with a lot of intent, and really notice what an instrument has to sound like. So I trust her opinion. 
Even if she cannot know if the speakers have great soundstage or image correctly. She focuses on the music and realism.

Maybe we should let partly deaf people review speakers, that would be interesting! 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Okey so we are a month in and I would like to give a broad overview of the changes I have made to the system and what i have heard regarding burn-in. 

So first of, burn-in affected the sound just ever so slightly. Bass became deeper and there was more air in the high notes. I didn't really notice a lot with the mid-range.
Overall I would say that the sound became music:) Because there was realism going on that I have never experienced with for instance Focal. 

After that I it was a good moment to swap the power cables on my powerbar and my amp to Audio-Note ISIS cables (with Oyaide 037 plugs). 
They are definitely a great upgrade from the old cheapo Lapp one's. The music became more pleasent, there was less emphasis on the high notes. 
And the music became even more realistic, or should I say neutral? Haven't done a lot of A/B testing, and didn't listen really critically so this is my first impression.

I'm enjoying my system way more now than a month ago. 

Other upgrades that I have planned, changing the cheap (200eu) powerbar to a real power conditioner. 
And changing the loudspeaker cables to AN-LX96 with the gold GYT spades. 
Both I already bought, just have to find time to solder the loudspeaker cable. After that I will test the power conditioner. 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

21 hours ago, ctsooner said:

Congratulations. So happy you are enjoying. 

Yes I am! What a speaker, I'm so happy I took the splurge. 
i can only imagine what the bigger models can do! I already now that I will never sell these speakers. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...