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?
Jafant, lots of Vandersteen info on

I think if Richard gets around to a CARBON Quatro, that would be a killer speaker. Where the quatro needs some extra lift in the midrange is right where the carbon drivers are so good. Those carbon driver are really sweet sounding units, and sweet as in good. The 5a color in the midgrange is simply gone, replaced with an even open textured holographic sound that you just have to hear.

I'd definitely look at, and listen to, a Carbon Quatro verses the 5a carbon if it existed. As is, you need to jump to the 5a. The 5a needs a big room to work it's best, and does cost a pricely sum but not that it isn't a speaker that's WORTH it! But the 5a carbon cost stopped me at C4 signatures, which were much less, for the time being.

Still, the Quatro filled a good sized room when I owned them, so they are an under achiever speaker in that regard.

Any of the Vandersteens with powered subs and carbon drivers are going to be very listenable and detailed. Richard knows a thing or two about bass integration and how hard it is to do "passive". I'm convinced after owning the Quatro's that you just can't get here from there in the bass without extra powered subs systems. No powered bass always had me yelling to Scotty to give it you got, but he was...and it wasn't enough. Witness I had to ADD subs to my C4's to get full range bass. So, I did not get there with C4's and as good as the bass is it isn't flat deep enough. Sure, some will say I'm full of something other than bass, but my ears aren't letting me believe it. Some passive speakers are "good" but none are great that aren't bigger than a barn with an all passive system. There is a LOT of energy in music below 40 Hz.

I have possibly one more speaker upgrade to do, and the Carbon 5a's are on my list to listen to again, and again, and again (Speaking of passive...I wonder if the dealer will notice that I'm a passive owner?).

Oh, the carbon upgrade is much more than just a driver swap. Just call and ask Richard!
Well, I do know now that John has a pair of 7s in New Jersey. I'm going to try to set up an audition there this spring when I'm out that way anyway. I think it's the best place to hear them anyway. Many speak of John almost as highly as they do of Vandersteen himself. Probably one of the top Vandersteen dealers in the country.

My fear is I will be smitten with the 7s. Two speaker designers in history have really captured my allegiance, John Dunlavy and Richard Vandersteen. Sadly, we'll never know what else Dunlavy may have come up with. The 7s though embody all of Vandersteens innovations, fusion subwoofer, minimum baffle enclosures, 1st order crossovers, transmission lines, perfect piston drivers and carbon fiber layered enclosures. So much for early retirement. Work keeps us young (and out of trouble).
Bass - Richard's system is really good - maybe the best. However, technology moves on and no stereo pair of subwoofers can flatten out all the room modes encountered in a real world room. An eleven-band analog equalizer can't match the 100's of poles a DSP-based digital filter can provide, and can't alter the subwoofer phase across the passband.

The answer is a distributed subwoofer system like the 4-woofer Audiokinesis Swarm and digital room correction (250 hz down). Through proper (asymmetric) placement it can completely flatten the room response in combination with digital room correction like Meridian's MRC system. With this type of system, the Seven is overkill.

It would be nice if Richard put both the 5a tweeter AND the Carbon / Balsa 4.5" driver in the Quatro Wood CT, because with the Swarm you don't need anything bigger. Also the 7 tweeter is unique - no phase plug. The 5a and Quatro tweeters are carbon monolithic domes without the "C sandwich" construction of the 7's dome. Not sure if this makes a difference, but the 7 is unique in more ways than one.
overly flat at least w just eleven bands of EQ under 120 HZ sounds dull and lifeless....
so says the manual, Richard and for grins I tried it w 5 a..true enuf dialing it in the last .5 DB was lackluster....
no real urge to mess w 7. ' s yet..enjoying staying up most of the nite listening....