How to Hook Up Vandersteen 2W Subwoofer

Hi All,

I have a Vandersteen 2W sub that I plan to add to the system listed below--it's a hybrid stereo/HT setup. So far I've been using a powered sub that plugs into the Arcam's sub pre-out RCA jack. The 2W is an entirely different beast though and has the following connections:

regular speaker wire inputs (via banana plugs)
a WX-2 crossover with one set each of RCA ins/outs

The Arcam has tons of connections, including 3 RCAs for subs, but I'm not sure those will be helpful with the 2W. Here's a screenshot of all the Arcam's connections

Ideally I'd like to use the 2W sub for stereo (2.1) and HT (5.1) but I realize that may be impossible. At the least I'd like to use it for HT via the Arcam. Here's my setup. I would very much appreciate any specific advice on:

1. how to connect the 2W and its crossover.
2. which wire/interconnects to use

I have read all the manuals and can't make complete sense out of how they apply to my exact setup. THANKS very much!

Vandersteen 2ceSig IIs (mains; bi-amp/bi-wire capable)
Vandersteen VSM-1 (surrounds)
Vandersteen VCC-1 (center)
Vandersteen 2W (the sub I'm adding now)

Cary SLP-05 (for stereo pre): the Cinema In RCAs go to the Pre Outs on the Arcam

Adcom GFA-555 (for stereo amp): the mains go into the inputs on this; the RCA outputs go into the inputs on the SLP-05

Arcam AVR-600 (for HT/surround): powers the VSMs and VCC-1 surrounds (and I think will power the 2W)
You run this 2W by hooking a pair of speaker wires from your Adcoms speaker binding posts to the 2Ws speaker binding post.
match Red to Red and Black to Black both right and left ch.
Next you need to install the temporary WX-2 crossover with one set each of RCA ins/outs in between the Cary pre amp and Adcom amp at the Adcom’s rca inputs.

with the amp off, adjust the the WX2 Box dip switch settings to one setting down to what the Adcom’s manual says its input imp is for example the 555 mk1 was 22k so you set the WX2 to 10 k ,if you have a Adcom 555 MK 2 it was 100 K so you set WX2 at 50 k.

Then listen with a bass track like Ray brown acoustic bass and see what you hear, adjust level to preference.
go up one or 2 settings as in the manual.
The Arcam will work as well as the Cary hooked up this way.
but in the Arcam set up menu you will need to adjust your front speakers to (Large full range) and redirect the sub out
.1 bass back into the front Right and left speakers.

Once you have the WX2 where you finally like it call a Vandersteen dealer and purchase the better sounding inline fixed X2
which gets rid of the extra set of interconnects and sounds much better.
Don't forget to spike and bubble level the sub and tighten nuts under the 2W
Please let us know if you have any questions
Vandersteen dealer
I was going to comment on this one but you have all the info you need. If there's anyone that knows Vandersteen, its John at Audioconnection. You won't get better advice.
Here's a follow-up question: how would you suggest I go about connecting two 2W subs to my system? I'm considering buying a second 2W for stereo subs.

Thank you!
Place the 2WQ where you chose...
if its on the left side of room its now the left channel
if its on the right side of room its now the right channel.
Walk over to your existing sub that has a right and left speaker level wire feeding it.
Leave just one connected while removing the other ch speaker level feed wire connecting it to the other sub.
Make sure both subs are in same phase red/black same as main speakers.
Confirm the left ch amp feed is going to the left sub.
Confirm the Right ch amp feed is going to the right sub.
Spike both subs, bubble level, and snug tighten all lock nuts. Don't forget this part as its important as is the laser tilt back and leveling for your main speakers.
Now re adjust settings to preference and let us know what you experience.
John, what if I have an integrated amp that has no subwoofer connections? Is there any way to use a Vandy 2W with this amplifier?
You would need to ask the manufacture that made the unit if they can support the proper value caps installed
Minus 3 DB at 80 HZ in
between the pre section and amp.
In your case it would seem to take a lot of patience
different time zones, lost in translation phone calls etc.
If you find it a battle.
there are integrated amps that can support the internal High Pass with fine results from companies Rogue Audio, Audio Research, Ayre etc,
and like Vandersteen are also Made in USA
Hi everyone...I need help/advice with my Vandersteen 2W subwoofer (110 volt)...I am from Indonesia and my country use 220 volt...Here is my system :
- JVC XLZ-1050TN CD player (220 volt)
- NAD 1020A pre amp (220 volt)
- Acurus a250 amp (220 volt)
- Vandersteen 2CE speaker
- Vandersteen 2W subwoofer (110 volt)

So how do I hook up the Vandersteen 2W subwoofer (110 volt) into my system ? because as far as I know, 110 volt cannot be plug into 220 volt...Must I use a step down transformer for the subwoofer or should I change all the system(CD player, pre amp, amp) into 110 volt prior to use the subwoofer ? thank you in advance
You are going to need a step down transformer to bring the 220 volt current to the subs 110 configuration.
The other equipment doesn't need to be included.
I recall other thread on this issue, so you may want to do a search on Audiogon. If I remember correctly, there a some step down transformers which work better with audio than others.
Perhaps Almarg will see this thread. He give some great advice on things related to this ( as well as other things audio).
Johnny (audioconnection) gave you some information that needs correcting. The Adcom 555 version 1 has an impedance or 100 Kohms, the 555 version 2 has an impedance of 22 K ohms.
The final settings are what you find to be most accurate. (Here Johnny can give you some more specific advice). For me, I find using a setting a bit higher (say, for 100K ohms, a 200K ohm setting) works best. So, if you find the bass lacking, just move a setting down.
Kudos to Johnny R
you IMO should buy that second sub and or filters from him
he is on here near 24/7 helping people

helping people

hpw cool

Thank you for your help Bob(gdnrbob) after I get a step down transformer for the Vandersteen sub then I have to bind paralel the speaker cable of the Vandersteen 2W with the bi-wire speaker cable of the Vandersteen 2CE to be connected to the amp which is 220 volt, right ? and my 220 volt Acurus amp will be okay with it because currently the powered subwoofer has been transformed into 220 volt, right ? thank you very much for your help
Your speaker/subwoofer cables don't care about line voltage.
Only your connected equipment needs to be powered at the respective correct voltage.

So, yes, you will be connecting both the speaker cable and the subwoofer cable to your amplifier outputs.-Either stacking the spades or using a combination of spades and banana plugs (I don't know if your amp binding posts allow for that).
Just follow the directions that Johnny gave you regarding set up of the subs and use the WX-2 to dial in the proper settings. Once done, either get the Vandersteen M5-HP or call Johnny and get the fixed crossovers.
The WX-2 is for determining the correct settings and is not supposed to be used as a permanent crossover. When in doubt, either call/email Johnny or Vandersteen. Of course, we'll always try to help...
Thank you very much Bob (gdnrbob)...I already have the WX-2 crossover and hesitate to upgrade with M5-HP because of the high price, I think I will stick with my fixed WX-2 crossover for now...Thank you again Bob, you have been very helpful
If you know the input impedance of your amp, you can get a quality pair of X-2 crossovers from Vandersteen for about $150.
The WX-2 crossover boxes that come with the Vandy sub have junk capacitors in them. Richard V. told me he gets those caps almost free. The WX-2 is for set-up purposes only.
The best way to go would be to buy the premium 5 crossovers from tomic601 if they are in your price range.
I think the OP has the fixed crossovers, but used the wrong model number.
call Randy at Optimal Enchantment in Santa Monica, he almost always has both configuration used at reasonable prices as long term customers move between balanced and SE gear....
My head is ready to explode trying to understand how to connect my (single) Vandersteen 2Wq sub woofer to my Anthem 1120 receiver and ultimately to my left & right Vandersteen 3A Signature front speakers in my home theater. 

I have 8 Vandersteen speakers in my home theater [1 pair 3A Signatures, two pairs of 2Ce Signatures, 1- VCC 5 Center Channel and (one) 2Wq Sub [hoping to add a second when funds permit].

I have read and reread the Vandersteen Model 2Wq System Setup and, unfortunately, I'm just not understanding the set up. 

All Vandersteen speakers are currently bi-wired to the Anthem 1120 receiver speaker outputs.

Question 1: Are any speaker wires connected to the 2Wq WX-2 Crossover box?  Or, is this box used to connect RCA wires to the Anthem 1140 receiver Right & Left "Main Pre-Out" inputs and then to what other inputs on the Anthem 1120 receiver?

Speaker wire connections:  This is my theory Is this theory correct?  Connect the 2Wq L&R banana plugs from the subwoofer to the Main L&R speaker outputs of the Anthem 1120 receiver?  Then connect the banana plugs L&R of the speaker wires to the Vandersteen 3A Signatures into into the (already connected) 2Wq banana plugs in the Anthem 1120 receiver.  

In other words, you would finally have one subwoofer connected directly to the Anthem 1120 receiver via banana plugs; and a second set of the  Vandersteen 3A signature speakers banana plugs connected to the back of the of the 2Wq subwoofer's banana plugs which had been preciously connected to to the Anthem 1120 speaker output terminals.

So, you'd have two sets of banana plugs "stacked together" connected to to the Anthem 1120 receiver.

Any help would be most appreciated.

You are correct concerning the speaker hook up. The wires for the speakers and the sub are stacked on the amp output. Though I would use spades rather than bananas, as they provide better contact.
Your issue is that you need to connect the crossover between the preamp and amp of your integrated. I googled your receiver and see that it does have a 'Pre Out', but I don't see an 'Amp In'. 
As I have no experience with home theater, I suggest you call John Rutan at Audioconnection. He is a Vandy dealer and very knowledable about lots of different brands. He is also on Audiogon-audioconnection is his tag.

You have to use the crossovers. If you don't, you will damage the sub's internal amp modules.
i had rdson to speak to RV today on a different topic...I asked he said you should call a dealer or the factory..
he started to walk me thru it..when he got to Dolby large front simple 2 channel mind went numb....

seriously there is a way, reach out to the factory on Tuesday...they will be there....
and BTW do not give up....I had a pair of 3a sig with 200 wpc of McIntosh power...they will rock the Free World....for sure....
If you have a HT receiver w no main in You need a vandersteen       V2 W  type sub hooks of your sub out
Suggest you don't read too much and just call a vandersteen dealer before you chase your tail .    
If you own the 2WQ already you need separates or pre amp out main in and you will be able to take advantage of the high passing advantage it offers 
I have a bit of a different sub connection question.  We moved which forced me to sell my dual 2wq's for lack of space.  I have since purchased smaller JL Audio E112 powered subs.  I was going to run the L/R pre-amp out into the subs (to take advantage of the subs internal crossover filtering), from there into the amps and then on to my mains which are 3A Sigs. 

It has been recommended that I NOT do this as it would compromise the 3A's natural sonic delivery, given that the majority of powered subs crossovers are not up to Vandersteen standards.

What then would be the best way to integrate the JL Audio subs into the system to achieve a 2.1 delivery?


Vandersteen 3A Signature : Mains
Vandersteen VCC-5 : Center
Vandersteen VSM-1 : Surrounds 

Marantz AV7702mkII Pre/Amp
Marantz MM7055 Amp (140 x 5ch - used for center & surrounds)
Musical Fidelity M250 Amps (250w monoblocks - 1 ea. L/R)
            (w/dual speaker outputs & signal pass through capability)

Thank you in advance!


IF the preamp has two sets of outputs, I would suggest a vandersteen M5- HP crossover on the 3a sig 
you may need to run Vndertones w SPL meter to tweak the high pass frequency....

also the 3a are flat pretty darn low with the rear wall facing acoustic coupler, are you really needing subs...?
Not having the dual 2wq's was immediately noticeable.  For certain the 3A Sigs go low but not viscerally LOW.
The Pre-amp does not have two sets of outputs.  The mono amps each have have two sets of speaker binding posts permitting two speakers to be connected.  This allows both the sub and 3A Sig to receive a direct connection from the amp.  Issue w/this configuration is signal duplication and timing.

I'm thinking the best way to accomplish my goal might be to use a high quality splitter cable.  Using the right channel as an example, connect a splitter cable to the pre-amp outputs.  Then, connect one end of the splitter cable to the subwoofer.  Connect the other end to an M5-HP crossover.  Connect the M5-HP to the mono amp.  Connect the 3A Sig to the mono amp speaker posts.
I guess I can relate.... when I go to 7 from Treo I certainly get visceral impact !

Audioquest makes a decent quality splitter
very affordable, you would really want the M5 also
some dealers have them used

Another option is electronic crossover , Music Reference has some old stock Beverige units that sound fantastic , reasonable $$$$

you could also try an ARC balanced line driver

".... when I go to 7 from Treo I certainly get visceral impact ! "
That is one shortcut that will DEFINITELY do the trick!  LOL!!

Thanks for your suggestions 601.  I will research further!

Have a good evening.