Vitae Model
 

Introduction  

The Vitae is the paragon of Ethera loudspeakers. It is the result of over two decades of research and development, utilizing the world-famous acoustics testing facilities of the National Research Council of Canada. The Vitae boasts impressive specifications and performance standards that rank it among the elites of loudspeakers in the world.

Highly regarded by audiophiles and music lovers, the Vitae has won numerous awards and has been reviewed and acclaimed in leading audio publications.

 

General Description 

The visual elegance of this non-rectangular system attests to Ethera's pride in craftsmanship and its quest for perfection. But interestingly, none of the Vitae's pleasing features are purely cosmetic: Every internal and external refinement contributes in some way to sonic purity.

Each carefully matched, handcrafted pair embodies many outstanding features, such as cabinet shape and construction, proprietary twin vents and baffle configuration. Panels and other enclosure parts are a combination of carefully selected quality materials, including 22 mm medium density composite sheathing, and exotic species of solid wood.

Performance

Since the attributes of a fine loudspeaker are additive, the accolades the Vitae continues to receive should come as no surprise. The anti-resonant cabinet, inclined tweeter placement, unique vents, strategic internal bracing and damping, and the matching premium metal stand, all lend to that audio magic that listeners describe.

Overall, spatial imaging is precise, and the sound open and transparent. In fact it is difficult to associate the sound with its source. The Vitae is also impartial to the entire range of musical instruments. It is as comfortable reproducing the rich harmonics of the strings as the breathy sounds of the woodwinds or the thunderous vibrations of the bass drums. In short, the Vitae produces sound that is natural, clear, musically intimate, and entirely captivating.

Components

Only components of the highest quality are used in Ethera products.  The tweeter is a 26 mm silk dome unit that yields an exceptionally smooth response past the upper limits of audibility.  The low frequency driver is a 215 mm unit with a mineral-filled polycone suspended in a die-cast, anti-resonant chassis.  Crossover is at 2 kHz.

The Vitae's 1.3 kilogram passive crossover system performs impeccably.  Huge air-cored inductors, chosen for their unsurpassed linearity and low DC resistance, are used in conjunction with high-stability capacitors to carry out the main crossover functions.  But Ethera goes even further:  Individual network components are measured and matched in our own workshops to optimize and balance performance in both stereo channels.

Technical Notes

The Vitae is a two way vented system utilizing the celebrated Quasi-Butterworth alignment. Major advantages of this design are its freedom from resonant peaks in the passband, a gradual roll-off for smooth, extended bass, and high power handling capacity relative to cabinet size.

The slightly protruding, contoured baffle negates the problem of diffraction and complements the angled back in establishing the main design features responsible for reducing standing waves inside the enclosure.

Ethera's uniquely designed "integrated" twin vents provide internal reinforcement in addition to performing their principal tuning function. Their relatively large Sv (cross-sectional area) avoids the generation of spurious noise that could result from turbulence in smaller ducts.  These refinements greatly contribute to the controlled behaviour of the air mass inside the enclosure, resulting in deep, tight, undistorted bass.

Our experiments reveal that for a given Vb (box volume) duct length and diameter are not the only variables that can be manipulated to optimize low frequency response. Vent shape and termination can also be varied, not only to affect  tuning, but to achieve other desirable benefits as well.  For example, the Vitae's vent design is such that distortion-contributing back waves have little chance of escaping the boundaries of the enclosure via this route.

No less attention has been paid to the selection and application of damping materials. Internal surfaces are specially treated to overcome panel resonance effectively.

Measurements

Figure 1.  shows the on-axis (00) frequency response curve.  Note the exceptional smoothness.  The room response, benefiting from boundary reinforcement, will extend well below 40 Hz.  The 88.5dB sensitivity reading for a 1 watt(2.83V) input at 1 metre anechoic permits the use of amplifiers with moderate power ratings.

Figure 1.  On-axis Frequency Response Curve

The level of distortion and noise is shown in Figure 2. With a signal that produces 90dB in the mid frequencies, virtually all of the measured distortion from 70Hz to 10kHz is below the reference floor.  

Figure 2.  THD & Noise @ 90dB

Specifications

Model

Vitae

Design

2-way tuned port

Frequency Range

35Hz-30 kHz

Sensitivity 1 watt (2.83 V RMS) at 1 metre anechoic

88.5dB

Amplifier Power

15-200 watts, no clipping

Impedance

nominal 8.0 Ohms, minimum 6 Ohms

Internal Volume

31.6 litres (1.1 ft3)

Finish

natural mahogany, hand finished; ebonized baffle

Dimensions

535 DIAG x 411H x 314D; 

(carton min. Int. 414W x 398H x 398D)

Weight

14 Kg (31 Ibs) each

Recommendation

We strongly recommend mounting on Ethera's premium metal stands.

Ethera reserves the right to initiate design changes without notice, in the ongoing pursuit of quality enhancement.  


Copyright 2006 Ethera Loudspeaker SystemsAll rights reserved.