Von Schweikert VR-55


The VR-5 series, including the latest Anniversary Mk2, were manufactured between 2003 and 2014 and were a huge success both commercially and sonically. Reviewers all over the world had stated that the VR-5 was one of the best sounding speakers available due to its highly advanced engineering features. We realized that any new version would have to be spectacular. Along with our ongoing R&D program, we began a new partnership with two European driver manufacturers who have been willing to modify their designs to make customized units for the new VR-55 to achieve the VSA sound. As we realize that a truly accurate speaker would have no sound of its own, we like to think that the VSA sound is simply the reproduction of the live event, with no coloration.

Featuring ceramic honeycomb woofers and midrange drivers along with a damped Beryllium dome tweeter, the measured distortion is less than 0.5% at normal listening levels. These drivers, when mounted in our Pat. Pending Triple Wall Laminate noise reducing cabinet, will reproduce the sonic tapestry with clarity and musicality that we have all been searching for. The VR-55 could be the ‘Holy Grail’ of sound engineering!

To enable the bass response to match any room, the VR-55 Aktive uses a 525-watt built-in woofer amplifier, requiring the customer’s existing amplifier to be used only to drive the midrange and tweeters. Our custom-built amplifier was engineered by CIAudio and uses Hypex transistor modules along with an analog power supply to provide tight bass control over the woofer’s voice coils and cones. The transient response speed of our woofer system has to be heard to fully understand what we have achieved. This bi-amp technique allows anyone, in any room, to achieve superb bass depth (21Hz @ -2dB) and also enables matching of the bass level to the upper frequency ranges. Finally, a speaker for every room!

To add the depth found in the concert hall, we have provided a rear-firing ribbon tweeter along with our Ambience Retrieval System with Effects Level Control. This Dipolar Design creates a “bubble” of sound rather than a narrow “beam,” generating a huge sweet space. For those listeners who do not require a subwoofer amplifier, we also build a Passive version.

VR-55 Technical Specifications

SYSTEM TYPE: Actively driven woofer system with on-board subwoofer\ amplifier. Transmission-line woofer loading with sealed midrange and tweeter enclosure. The woofer system is a four-chamber hybrid, using 100% fill of Polystuffing. Q of woofer system is 0.6. Woofer damping is user adjustable, rear loaded port.

CABINET DESIGN: To eliminate cabinet “resonance” and coloration, we build a Triple Wall panel consisting of a 75mm thickness of resin/wood powder, artificial stone, and hard rubber. These layers resonate at differing Q frequencies, which enables the vibration to “actively” reduce sound transmission through the cabinet proper. This cabinet design is superior to solid aluminum.

WOOFER DESIGN: Two -8” (220mm) cast frame drivers, using a honeycomb ceramic cone with an extremely high Young’s Modulus (ratio of weight to rigidity). The high flux density motor, designed with Finite Element Analysis (FEA), reduces the distortion to 0.5%. Made in Germany for VSA.

MIDRANGE DESIGN: 6.5” (165mm) cast frame driver honeycomb ceramic cone with Kevlar backing for greater damping in the critical midrange frequency range. FEA-designed motor for low distortion (0.4%) and flat frequency response. This is one of the most accurate drivers ever designed; manufactured by hand in
Germany for VSA specification and serial numbered for quality assurance.

FRONT TWEETER DESIGN: An advanced metal dome tweeter using a Beryllium substrate with ceramic damping layer to eliminate harsh sound quality. Driven by an FEA-designed Neodymium ring magnetic system, the rear wave is absorbed by a specialized rear chamber filled with fiberglass. This new tweeter has the lowest measured distortion of any dome tweeter on the market, cost-no-object.

REAR AMBIENCE RETRIEVAL DRIVER: To match the transient response and tone quality of the superb front tweeter, we have employed a 75mm ribbon tweeter driven by a Neodymium magnet system for the lowest distortion and widest frequency range we have measured from a 75mm ribbon.

AMBIENCE RETRIEVAL SYSTEM: To reproduce the spatiality of the concert hall, we have designed an all-new ambience retrieval circuit with Effects Level control, to match the rear dipolar dispersion pattern and intensity to the rear wall, whether it is a hard reflective surface or softer, absorptive surface such as a curtain.

FREQ RESP: 16Hz-40KHz (-6db); 21Hz – 40kHz (-2dB)
SENSITIVITY: 90dB @ 1w/1m
IMPEDANCE: 8ohms Active / 4ohms Passive
REC. POWER: 20-200watts (Active) 100-500watts (Passive)
SIZE: 42″ x 14″ x 28″
WEIGHT: 186lbs

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