Vandersteen 5Aa Carbon--any 5a owner's opinions?

I'm new to 5as, having my pair since only 23 April. They're absolutely the best-sounding speakers I've ever heard, and I'm thrilled to have them.

But I understand that some of us V'steenists have raved about the 7's superior transparency, etc. The 5a Carbons use the 7's MR driver and (I think) a better tweeter than the 5a. Has anyone heard them?
I'm sort of resurrecting this thread to see if anyone has doe the 5A to 5a Carbon upgrade and, if so, what the impressions have been. My 5As are due for the battery changes, seven years really flew by. I can send the components to Vandersteen and change the batteries or bit the bullet and send the whole speaker pair in for the upgrade which would kill two birds with one stone.

The 7s are just way beyond what I could justify expense-wise but if this upgrade would bring the 5A up a notch I would consider the cost of that worthwhile. Thanks in advance for any input.
I have been using my 5A's for a few years and really like them. When I moved from New Jersey, Richard himself helped me with the setup for this house with the additional help from John at AudioConnection. I am well acquainted with the sound of the 5A's. I visited a local (Arizona) dealer who demoed the Carbons. My wife and I could hear no difference between these new Carbons and the 5A's I had at home. Surely there were some slight differences...different electronics, but I could not hear an additional 100 dollars improvement. I also heard the 7's at AudioConnection....unfortunately, they weren't using their absolute first class gear, as their big Audio Research stuff was out for upgrades....however.....I heard a great speaker, but one not much if at all better than those I have at home. When I talked to Richard and John about this, they both said that in my house, I would hear a real difference. As of now, I think I'll just keep what I have. I strongly encourage everyone to audition these speakers themselves. As a company, Richard Vandersteen is at the top of any for consideration. John at Audio Connection is the absolute best dealer I've worked with....and there were many. This post is MY take at what I heard. Others will surely hear differently.
Thanks for your input Stanley. I love my 5As as well. It doesn't really matter whether the 7 is a little or a lot better in my case because, even after selling the 5As, the difference in price is just too much.

I'll continue to consider the Carbon upgrade even though I really have no place to audition them for several reasons.

1. After seven years of steady use, I like the idea of knowledgable workers taking them down and testing every component to make sure it's working as it should. They build it back up as if it were a brand new 5A Carbon. This of course would also take care of the crossover batteries which are due for a change. According to Richard, this labor is a large part of the cost. It's actually more labor intensive than building a new pair.

2. According to my dealer in Minneapolis, the upgrade renews the warranty as for a new pair of speakers. It also includes dealer setup again which wouldn't hurt to recheck.

3. I trust Richard's judgement and doubt he would offer an upgrade he didn't feel was substantially worthwhile. This is a break even venture for him at best, he was actually losing money on it before he raised the price, so I really doubt he has much motivation to try to exaggerate the improvements to anyone. As Richard put it, plenty of people spend more than the cost of the upgrade on power conditioners, cables and the like for much less, or any, benefit.

I don't know why the model 7 drivers were not used for the tweeter and mid bass drivers as well. I suspect it has to do with cost/benefit ratio but I want to hear Richard's take on this before I make the final decision on whether or not to do this.
I had the Vandersteen 5a speaker system in my listening room for about 6 years.
Peter Roth (Ultra Audio) is a member of the LA?Orange County Audio Society where I am also a member. At the time his reference speaker was the 5a. He told me about the new Model 7s that had just had an excellent debut at CES. He had heard them at the show and was impressed. OK, so I called Randy Cooley at
Optimal Enchantment in Santa Monica and set up an audition. Because I had the 5as I asked if they had been set up using the Vandersteen jig/laser plus DVD in order to optimize bass response and speaker placement. Yes, he had
done that. Simply put, what I heard that day blew me away. I had made sure that I had just played some of those same recordings at home with the 5as.
Hearing those same recordings at the dealers store on the Model 7 revealed
aspects of those recordings that I had never heard. And the difference was not
subtle. In all aspects this was a major breakthrough in speaker technology.
Now I have had these speakers for almost three years and my opinion has
not changed one bit. Most of the posts from those who have auditioned
the Model 7s have said the same thing. As I have mentioned in a previous
post, the 5a Carbons perform about half way between the 5a and 7. It;s not
just the driver upgrade that makes this so. It is also the carbon fiber cabinet
that makes it superior to the 5a as great a speaker as the 5a is.
I'm just telling you what I have heard in my own listening room. Friends of
mine in the Society who heard the 5a and then heard the 7 in my room all
said the same thing. To them it was obvious.
I should also mention that the electronics that I have are Aesthetix Io Eclipse
phono preamp with two power supplies plus Aesthetix Atlas Signature mono
bloc amps. I had this set up with both the 5a and 7 speaker systems.