Vandersteen Audio 2Ce loudspeaker Sidebar 3: Measurements 3

The lateral response family of the 2Ce is shown in fig.6, normalized to the on-axis response. (That is, the on-axis response deviations are subtracted from all the curves, therefore showing only the changes which result from a (hypothetically) flat on-axis response as we move off axis.) The rolloff is quite smooth, the response holding up very well to at least 30 degrees off-axis. The vertical response, on the other hand, as shown in fig.7 (again normalized to the on-tweeter-axis response, shown as the straight line in the center), shows a considerable deviation above and below the optimum axis—reason enough to take Vandersteen's setup instructions (particularly tilt-back) seriously.



The waterfall plot in fig.8 is very good, with a few mild resonances evident but also a notably clean and rapid decay in the bass region compared with many of the loudspeakers we have tested. Fig.9 shows the effect of the midrange and treble contour controls, the overall response again normalized to flat so we may show only the contour effects. The responses are a little erratic—again note that these are the maximum positions of the controls—and the action of the high-frequency contour is closer to a shelving response which engages fairly abruptly at about 7kHz. Some "crossing over" of the effects of the controls are evident between their maximum boost and maximum cut positions, but there is little overlap in the operating regions of the midrange and high-frequency controls. The maximum effect of the controls is greater than implied by their +3, -2dB markings—closer to ±6dB.



Altogether, the Vandersteen 2Ce's measurements would be more than acceptable in a much more expensive loudspeaker. That they belong to a modestly priced one indicates what is possible with refinement and competent design work.—Thomas J. Norton