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Hyped high end on Vandersteen 2CE speakers...need input

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  • Pro Audio
  • Speakers
  • Audio
Last response: in Home Audio
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Anonymous
July 6, 2005 5:32:15 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Hello all -

I'm running Vandersteen 2CE speakers through a cheap Alesis RA-100 amp,
and I realized recently that the high end is (very) significantly
hyped. I don't have another amp to try this on, but would you say it
was the amp causing this hyping, or could it be the speakers? Any
recommendations on a <$400 flat amp? I listen to several recordings
through Sennheiser HD600 premium headphones and am getting a very
different HF response. Any input appreciated!

RB

More about : hyped high end vandersteen 2ce speakers input

Anonymous
July 6, 2005 6:25:43 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

rbaulbin@hotmail.com wrote:
> Hello all -
>
> I'm running Vandersteen 2CE speakers through a cheap Alesis RA-100 amp,
> and I realized recently that the high end is (very) significantly
> hyped. I don't have another amp to try this on, but would you say it
> was the amp causing this hyping, or could it be the speakers? Any
> recommendations on a <$400 flat amp? I listen to several recordings
> through Sennheiser HD600 premium headphones and am getting a very
> different HF response. Any input appreciated!

I used to own a pair of 2CEs and I don't remember them being hyped at
all. I used them with Counterpoint, Hafler and Golden Tube amps and the
speakers always took on the character of the amp to a large extent. I
also have the HD600s and have compared the headphones to speakers many
times. It's not really a fair comparison, but at least spectral balance
can be evaluated - taking the room into account with the speakers and
the difference in the way we hear with headphones, etc.

I'd say the issue is your amp. I remember a few years back when the
Mars stores were first getting going. I was down in their Tampa store
(one of the first) and they had a demo room for monitor speakers and
amps. We listened to several different amp and speaker combinations,
but one amp really jumped out as sounding harsh and hyped on the top.
It was a Mackie power amp. Turns out that it had a "HF lift" switch or
some similar nonsense - so maybe check your amp for this kind of a
thing.

Failing that, I'd definitely suggest to try those speakers with a
different amp. Bryston, Pass, Hafler Trans Nova, etc.

If you get a chance to do this, let us know how you fared.

Karl Winkler
Lectrosonics, Inc.
http://www.lectrosonics.com
Anonymous
July 6, 2005 9:55:28 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

<rbaulbin@hotmail.com> wrote:
>
>I'm running Vandersteen 2CE speakers through a cheap Alesis RA-100 amp,
>and I realized recently that the high end is (very) significantly
>hyped. I don't have another amp to try this on, but would you say it
>was the amp causing this hyping, or could it be the speakers? Any
>recommendations on a <$400 flat amp? I listen to several recordings
>through Sennheiser HD600 premium headphones and am getting a very
>different HF response. Any input appreciated!

I don't know, but I can't imagine an amplifier much worse than the RA-100.
I'd suggest trying the speakers with an amplifier that has some reasonable
current-producing ability and see if the bottom end is not somewhat
better.

There are plenty of decent amps from Adcom, Parasound, and Hafler. Just
about anything will be a big step up from the RA-100, but I'd suggest
a used Adcom GFA-555 as a first try.

Then again, maybe the speakers aren't voiced the way you want them.
Without a decent amp, you'll never know, but with an amp you can at
least make an informed decision.
--scott
--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Related resources
Anonymous
July 7, 2005 12:13:05 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

I'd go with the adcom. HD-600's are rolled off at 20k, check the
frequency plot on those. Many Hi-Fi consumer speakers come with the
California curve, check their response graphs.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Anonymous
July 7, 2005 3:56:55 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

"Karl Winkler" <karlwinkler66@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:1120685142.999610.113400@o13g2000cwo.googlegroups.com
> rbaulbin@hotmail.com wrote:
>> Hello all -
>>
>> I'm running Vandersteen 2CE speakers through a cheap
Alesis
>> RA-100 amp, and I realized recently that the high end is
>> (very) significantly hyped. I don't have another amp to
try
>> this on, but would you say it was the amp causing this
>> hyping, or could it be the speakers? Any recommendations
on
>> a <$400 flat amp? I listen to several recordings through
>> Sennheiser HD600 premium headphones and am getting a very
>> different HF response. Any input appreciated!

> I'd say the issue is your amp. I remember a few years back
> when the Mars stores were first getting going. I was down
in
> their Tampa store (one of the first) and they had a demo
room
> for monitor speakers and amps. We listened to several
> different amp and speaker combinations, but one amp really
> jumped out as sounding harsh and hyped on the top. It was
a
> Mackie power amp. Turns out that it had a "HF lift" switch
or
> some similar nonsense - so maybe check your amp for this
kind
> of a thing.

Most Mackie power amps have a switch that optimizes their
frequency response for driving constant-directivity horns,
which require response that rises at about 6 dB per octave.
This can also be implmented with a small capacitor in series
with the speaker, but at a considerable loss of amplifier
power transfer.

RA100's do't have a CD horn feature. As a rule they deliver
fairly flat response into relatively easy speaker loads.
RA100s don't have true balanced inputs, and don't have
really good low-impedance load handling. The OP might be
hearing premature clipping due to operation into a load that
is outside the RA-100's limited operational envelope.

If premature clipping is causing the perception of harsh
respone then an amp with more robust power into low
impedance loads could be a big improvement. Some more
modern, and/or Hafler or QSC for example.
Anonymous
July 8, 2005 12:42:44 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

In article <1120794720.718156.134030@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com>,
<rbaulbin@hotmail.com> wrote:
>Thank you all for the input..
>
>I'm beginning to think the Digi001 setup I'm running this from might
>have something to do with it, in light of this article:
>
>http://www.marktaw.com/recording/HomeStudio/Digi001/Mea...
>
>Is this a possibility?

Yes, that's also definitely a possibility. But swap it out for a
decent standalone CD player for an afternoon and see.

If it were me, I'd replace the amp AND get good outboard converters.
But that's just me.
--scott

--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
July 8, 2005 1:07:33 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

<rbaulbin@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:1120794720.718156.134030@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com
> Thank you all for the input..
>
> I'm beginning to think the Digi001 setup I'm running this
from
> might have something to do with it, in light of this
article:
>
>
http://www.marktaw.com/recording/HomeStudio/Digi001/Mea...
>
> Is this a possibility?

Frankly not based on just what these plots plots show,
particularly

http://www.marktaw.com/recording/HomeStudio/Digi001/Com...

I see a +0.25 dB rise above 15 KHz, which is very likely to
be inaudible, let alone being a deal breaker.

If you want to get some experience with hearing the effects
of small and large frequency response variations, please
listen to some of the files you can download from

http://www.pcabx.com/technical/dips_pips_tips/index.htm

and

http://www.pcabx.com/technical/low_pass/index.htm

I should point out that http://www.marktaw.com/recording
shows measurements on someone else's equipment operating in
their environment. There are such things as equipment
failtures and interface effects, and they could be affecting
the sound quality where you are.
Anonymous
July 9, 2005 3:05:44 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Stephen Sank <bk11@thuntek.net> wrote:
>Scott, ya' think the RA100 sounds as bad as a Dyna ST120?

Well, the ST120 at least has an excuse. Back then folks didn't really
know the pitfalls of designing with high-gain solid-state stuff. Today
they do.

Well, some of them, anyway. Clearly not everyone.
--scott

--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
!