THE MODEL FIVE
The Model Five combines the
superior openness of the Vandersteen boxless design with the powerful, extended bass of an
amplified subwoofer in a compact, elegant loudspeaker. With trend-setting technology, the
best components, and painstaking attention to detail, the Model Five is the ultimate
embodiment of advanced Vandersteen design principles.
The Model Five uses the proven Vandersteen Aligned Dynamic Design to optimize the
dispersion and transient accuracy of the drivers while maintaining the input signal's time
and phase integrity. The drivers, their positioning and their mounting baffles were
developed with the aid of FFT computer analysis to minimize diffraction, cone break-up,
multi-driver interference and out-of-band phase irregularities. The construction, alignment, and
positioning of the drivers allow a point-source wave front,
maximize the phase coherence of the loudspeaker at the listening position, and minimize
time smear. Mounted horizontally in the bottom of each Model Five's lower section is the
most advanced subwoofer driver ever built. Shown below, this massive 12"
proprietary Vandersteen driver is a push-pull design with a powerful motor on
either side of the curvilinear aluminum cone. Each motor uses a precision-formed magnet
assembly with copper rings to provide more than an inch of perfectly linear excursion. The
dual magnet assemblies are supported by a rugged die-cast basket engineered for absolute
rigidity. The driver's two voice coils are wound on either end of the single common former
that runs through the driver from motor to motor. Each Model Five contains a 400-watt
amplifier like the one shown to the left to power the subwoofer driver. This internal
amplifier reduces the demands on the main full-range amplifier and
insures ample power for the most demanding music or sound effects.
The front-firing drivers are shown in the
picture below. The large driver to the right is the 7" woofer which
is mounted just above the subwoofer enclosure in a resistively loaded
transmission line. Like the subwoofer driver, it uses a precision-formed magnet assembly with with
a copper Faraday ring on the pole piece to reduce magnetic distortion
and maximize linear excursion. The heavy-duty die-cast basket provides
superior rigidity. The unique co-injected fluroelastimer rubber surround
supporting its curvilinear poly/Kevlar composite cone is molded into a
distinctive, performance enhancing shape.
The far left driver is the patented
4 1/2" open basket Vandersteen midrange driver that is also found
in our Model 3. This state-of-the-art proprietary driver uses advanced
materials and construction techniques to minimize the frontal areas of
the die-cast basket and alnico
magnet assembly and reduce internal diffraction. As shown in the
illustration to the left, the open-basket driver and transmission-line
enclosure combine to eliminate rear-wave reflections. Energy from the
back of the cone is absorbed and dissipated rather than reflected back
through the cone into the room as time-smear distortion. Once
again, a copper Faraday ring is used on the pole piece to reduce
magnetic distortion. After evaluating numerous cone materials
from common (treated paper), to esoteric (metal alloy & Kevlar),
to exotic (ceramic), mineral-filled polymer was selected for
its superior transparency and linearity through the midrange
The driver in the center of the
picture is the 1" ceramic coated, metal-alloy dome tweeter. It is
a dual-chamber, transmission-line loaded design to improve range and
linearity. Critical acoustic dampening and
a precision phase plug extend the high frequencies past
audibility without the excessive ringing associated with open or
underdamped metal dome tweeters. The specific coated alloy used for
the dome was chosen for its superior strength and resistance to
break-up compared to common dome materials. Not shown in the picture
is the rear mounted 3/4" dome tweeter that can be adjusted to
tailor the Model Five's treble response to different rooms or listener
The Model Five's innovative crossover is shown in the picture to the
right. Comprised of transient- perfect, first-order networks designed to preserve the
critical phase integrity of the original sound, it is compensated to allow the drivers to
operate in absolute phase with each other. Custom high-purity silver internal wire is used
to maximize signal transfer to the drivers.
Featuring leading-edge technology, the most advanced
materials, and the highest quality components, the Model Five is a true state-of-the-art
loudspeaker. With its unique upgradeable modules, it is guaranteed to remain
state-of-the-art well into the third millennium.
As you can see in the picture to the right of
an unfinished Model Five, the head is constructed of 22 layers of 3/4" MDF
permanently bonded together with a special anti-resonant adhesive. Separate one inch thick
driver mounts for the woofer, midrange, and tweeter are bolted to
the layered head. These
removable driver mounts are made of high-pressure epoxy laminate, an incredibly dense and
inert material that provides absolutely rigid coupling between the
drivers and the head. The picture to the left shows how the baffles holding the
drivers on the Model Five are as small as possible to eliminate virtually all of the early
reflections that affect dynamic speakers with conventional flat or low
diffraction baffles. Reducing
both early reflections and edge diffraction improves the imaging and enhances the openness
and transparency of the speaker. The graph to the right demonstrates the significant
advantages of the
Vandersteen minimum baffles.
The lower section of the
Model Five containing the dual-motor
subwoofer driver and 400-watt
amplifier is constructed of an
advanced 1-inch to 2-inch
thick constrained-layer-dampened material. The picture to the left shows the inside of the
subwoofer enclosure of an unfinished speaker. As you can see in the picture, the internal
construction features elaborate heavy bracing and reinforcing for superior resonance
While conventional speakers must be perfectly positioned in the room to maximize their
low-frequency performance, the Model Fives can be positioned in a convenient location and
then tuned to the requirements of that particular placement. The subwoofer amplifier
incorporates multiple unique adjustments that allow the speaker's low frequencies to be
matched to its environment and the preferences of its owner. Model Five owners can adjust
the sensitivity of the subwoofer section and contour the subwoofer's response. The
sensitivity adjustment increases or decreases the overall level of the bass without
changing its character. The low frequency contour control adjusts the Q of the subwoofer
to accommodate different rooms, listening tastes, or system modes. In subwoofer
engineering terms, system Q is the product of a complex mathematical equation derived from
driver, electrical, and enclosure parameters. In practical terms, it relates to the
character of the bass response. A low Q subwoofer sounds very tight and controlled. A high
Q subwoofer produces a full, warm bass with more energy in the most audible bass range.
Each speaker also has eleven, dealer-adjustable
compensation controls that modify the subwoofer's response to precisely counter room and
placement induced nonlinearities. When the speakers are initially set up in the owner's
home, the dealer uses a low frequency analyzer to set the compensation controls for the
most linear bass response at the listening position. Once the dealer sets these controls,
they will not need to be readjusted unless the speaker placement or listening position
With these innovative and versatile adjustments,
Model Fives can be matched to almost any environment or placement. They will work as well
in a small room as in a large room. The family entertainment system is a part of the room
rather than the room being forced to be a part of the entertainment system.
To fully protect your investment, the
Model Five is a totally modular design. The drivers, crossover, baffles, and amplifier
modules can be changed in the field using only a screwdriver and soldering pencil. The
picture to the left shows how the amplifier and crossover modules are
inserted into the speaker while the picture to the right shows the removable
baffles. As better materials or technologies evolve, reasonably priced updates will be
available to incorporate the improvements into existing speakers. This insures that every
pair of Model Fives, regardless of age, will continue to represent the leading edge of
loudspeaker design, technology, and performance.
While it uses the same boxless design as other Vandersteen loudspeakers, the
Model Five presents a very different external appearance. The lower two thirds of the speaker is covered with
wood veneer while the head is enclosed by a removable grille
structure. The Model Five is available in standard Vandersteen oak and walnut
finishes with exotic woods and/or finishes available at additional cost.
Owners can also
supply their own high-pressure laminates to insure that their speakers are compatible with
their existing home decor. In surprising contrast to its enormous full-range sonic
capabilities, the Model Five is not a large speaker. With the grille and floor coupling
cones installed, it is only 14" wide by 20" deep at the base with the front and
sides tapering inward toward its 44" height. The moderate sized Model Five provides a
high-performance solution to situations where larger, placement-sensitive speakers would
not be aesthetically or domestically acceptable.
Each Model Five undergoes rigorous testing and retesting during each phase
of construction. The drivers and crossover components are individually tested and matched
into complementary sets. The completed crossover assemblies are computer tested against a
reference circuit, then potted to insure that they will not be affected by vibration. Each
finished speaker is high-power sweep tested for structural integrity and FFT computer
analyzed for correct response and performance compared to the model reference. This
intense commitment to product quality and reliability is unsurpassed in the audio
Music is pure in its dimensions. Time smear (multipath) distortions from reflections and
diffraction destroy this purity just like the multipath ghost images that ruin a
television picture. All the Model Five's components, construction, and engineering are
designed to preserve the music's original dimensions. By minimizing internal and external
diffraction, maintaining phase and frequency linearity, using a single driver for each
frequency range, and controlling vibration and resonances, the Model Fives eliminate time
smear distortion and accurately convey the composition, timing, and shading that build an
involving musical experience. They reveal the power, the authority, the subtlety, and the
intimacy of the music.
This dimensional purity is the essence of the Model Fives.
It allows them to recreate the music's original scope and passion. You become more
involved in the music as its complex inner structure is revealed with increased
transparency and realism.
We are pleased to have embodied these qualities that are so
fundamental to your enjoyment of your music in a speaker whose elegant, physical presence
complements the decor of your listening room. We are dedicated to continue building
distinguished loudspeakers, true to both science and music, that make a statement about
the importance of music in your life.
dual-motor, push-pull subwoofer with die-cast basket and a
curvilinear aluminum cone. Precision-formed magnet assemblies with
copper Faraday rings provide over 1 full inch of linear excursion.
Built-in 400-watt amplifier with user adjustable low frequency
contour and multi-band room response compensation.
die-cast basket, long excursion woofer with curvilinear poly/kevlar
composite cone and a precision formed magnet assembly with a copper
Faraday ring for enhanced linearity. Transmission-line loading.
open basket 4 1/2" midrange with a curvilinear filled polycone
and proprietary high-performance die-cast basket and alnico magnet
assembly to reduce internal driver reflections and improve
linearity. Copper Faraday ring on pole piece. Ferrofluid voice coil
cooling. Transmission-line loading.
critically damped, low-distortion, dual-chamber, ceramic-coated
alloy dome tweeter.
Precision phase plug. Ferrofluid voice coil cooling.
- ATS TWEETER
3/4" critically damped, low-distortion alloy dome tweeter.
Ferrofluid voice coil cooling.
- Frequency Response
22Hz to 30kHz + or - 2dB.
87dB at 1 meter with a 2.83 volt input.
- Recommended Amplifier
40 to 200 watts per channel into 8 ohms for the upper section, 400 watt subwoofer
6 ohms nominal, 4 ohms minimum.
100Hz, 600Hz, 5000Hz and adj. H.F., 6dB per octave.
All the drivers are connected in positive absolute phase.
Totally modular design. The driver, crossover and amplifier modules can be changed in the
field to accommodate future upgrades.
44" high, 14" wide, 20" deep.
182 pounds net, 225 pounds gross, each.
Specifications and design are subject to change
due to our continuous research and development program.
to Vandersteen Price List