Have ordered a pair of Sopra 2 in white (interestingly, it is referred to as Stormtrooper by some users which l really agree) and a Esoteric N05. Due to space limitation, thinking of an integrated amp to complete the system and the shortlisted are: Simaudio Moon 600i Naim Supernait 2 Hegel
Any Sopra 2 owners (or potential owners) have comment?
Need to shop cables too but would leave this later.
SYK, I have the Sopra 2's. Have had them a year now and they have really opened up from when I first bought them. It takes some time, don't get discouraged if they don't sound as open and warm as you expected at the onset.
My integrated amps are SA 700i, Hegel 300 and 160. I also had a 600i to demo for a day. The SA 600i beat the 2 Hegels on all levels, but the price point for the SA is much more than even the newer H360 which I have not tried. The Hegel's do sound nice with the Sopra's.
The 700i kills with the Sopra's. Same with the 600i but to a lesser degree. The 700i is a significant step up from the 600i, but you are rewarded with amazing soundstage, speed, depth, clarity, punch and very articulate on the smallest of detail. The 600 is about 80-85% of what the 700i does. Sim and Sopra are a great match.
The Naim isn't the right amp for your speakers. Of the other 2, the Sim is most likely the safest choice. I'm not saying that there's anything wrong with Hegel, but I don't like the fact that they seem to go out of their way to hide that their products are made in China.
Your choice in integrated amp will play a huge part in how your system sounds. If you're willing to consider other options, here's a few that are worth looking into. Ayre 5 Series, CJ CA150, BAT 300x, Primare. If you have a dealer, YBA is the most common match for JM Labs in Europe, but hard to find in the US.
SYK I was at AXPONA recently and ran across a Speaker Cable Company, Audio Envy (FT. Collins Co)., I bought a 8 foot pair of cables, cost around $250.00 for the pair. They sound really good with My 700i and the Sopra's. I compare them to my Silnote Poseidons (cost $1500.00) and they are very close in performance. I have only had them a few days and with more break in time the Audio Envy's could be right there with Silnotes. A great value at $250.00 for the pair. Just thought you might consider as you look at speaker cables.
If you are open to tube amplification,
and given that the Sopra n2 are said to be a relatively easy speaker to drive,
I'd strongly recommend a Raven Audio amp. Sound stage is just through the roof, vocals are sublime, and bass is deep and tight. Since you mentioned an integrated amp, The Raven Reflection MKII comes to mind. I have heard it driving big tower speakers, and the sound was fabulous. Not to mention, this thing is drop dead gorgeous! Unless you will be trying to play rock or rap at concert levels, the Reflection should have plenty of oomph.
I am not a Sopra No2 owner but would like to be a potential owner. I currently own a pair of Diva Utopia Be and I used to drive them with a Hegel H200 integrated. Sounded good but was a tad short on the very top and bottom end. My guess is that you probably need to go with H300 or H360 if you decide to go the Hegel route. If your budget allows, some more expensive integrates will likely to release the full potential of these speakers. At least that's my experience with my Focal's.
I would strongly suggest checking out the new Anthem STR integrated. I had a lucky opportunity to hear it driving a pair of Sopra no1's and it was incredible.
The room correction on it can end up being a life saver for you too. I'd see if you can find a local dealer who could loan it to you. Very impressive piece.
I do agree that the moon and micro mega stuff works well. Micro mega not as much, but still very acceptable. Sopras always sound good, but the key is to unlock the absolute magic thaey have hidden in them via system synergy. The Anthem surprisingly was the best I've heard.
I think in recent years various brands have spotted the demand of high quality integrated amp and therefore have launched a lot of good gear. Of course, there are also some products that are below par. Audition would take a long time.
Besides, proper match among the components is also of utmost important.
I’ve been driving my Sopra2’s with a Simaudio 700i for the past 2 years. It loafs along with around 5 Watts staying in Class A mode except for loud (90+dB) bass peaks in my 15’x24’ room with high ceilings. It has absolutely no problem playing at 100db if I care to listen that loud.
I haven’t experimented with cables yet. I’m using Discovery Essence and Essential cables and balanced interconnects which improved dynamics over using unbalanced. Highly recommend using balanced if your source permits.
I auditioned the Sopra’s with Hegel, Naim, and McIntosh integrated amps in addition to the 700i. The Simaudio is very synergistic with the Sopra’s and my choice. It’s magic !!!
Taking more than 2 months, my no2 has arrived. They are beautiful and perfectly fit my living room.
Finally I have Naim 272 and 250DR for their simplicity- 2 boxes only. I also have set up a NAS for the system. I know myself that I would seldom play discs when I have a steamer. So far this is proved correct.
Sound is is very good and has had met my expectations. Lovely high (slight too much) and lots of bass (a bit too much and I did some tuning to control it). Vocal is superb.
I then have the Naim speaker cables to replace my aged MF.
Currently doing other tuning like power cords and line filters.
Sim700 was on my top lists but advices about reselling value in my area stopped me.
Hi all, interested as well as I recently took the plunge and aquired a pair of Sopra 3s. I currently have hegel H30 dac and anzus carbon speaker cables. The system sounds powerful and dynamic and very listenable with smooth vocals. Moving stillpoints around under different gear (or repositioning) makes a noticable difference to the sound as well. In any case I'm curious what amplifier others have found pairs the best with the Sopra. Thanks!
Focal loves Devialet - if you've the budget the D400/D440 is the sweet spot. You wont find better without spending $$$ Go with good cables - copper. You'll want something full bodied without giving up the resolution. Try the new Lessloss C-Marc speaker cables.
I've heard the Sopra 2 at the shop paired with Rega Osiris analog integrated amp with Rega Isis CD player served as digital source component. They sounded fabolous together highly musical. Rega makes very musical sounding gears and is very good at expressing musical emotions and feelings. Rega Osiris integrated is Rega's flagship integrated amp and currently retails for $10k. The Rega Isis CD player is also Rega's flagship CD player and currently retails for $10k. You should consider the Rega Osiris integrated amp for your Focal Sopra 2.
Hi caphill, thank u for the suggestion. As refer to my earlier post, have had bought the Naim 272 and 250 DR units. Quite match the sopra and am happy with the set-up. Nevertheless, after 1yr+, I believe a better source and amplification can further boost the performance. Or in other words , the real performance of sopra has yet to be released, I believe.
Great yeah I guessed I didn’t read through the whole thread didn’t realize that you have purchased the Naim gears. Sorry my bad. I love Naim gears and am myself a Naim owner. In my main two-channel setup in a dedicated well treated listening room I have the Naim Statement gears which consist of the Naim NAC S1 linestage preamp and the Naim NAP S1 monoblock power amps driving the Magico M6 speakers.
But I’m not using Naim digital front end source components. I have DCS Vivaldi full four stacks which consist of the Vivaldi master clock, Vivaldi upsampler, Vivaldi DAC, Vivaldi CD/SACD transport. I also have turntable rigs with an ARC Reference 10 phonostage pre. Do you have a turntable in your setup?
I’m also using the Naim Uniti Nova in my bedroom setup paired with the B&W 805 D3 stand-mount speakers. I’m very happy with this all one box solution Uniti Nova very musical sounding and makes it suitable for a bedroom or a small room setup paired with compact stand-mount speakers or compact floorstanders.
Hey caphill, you just get all the best gears in the world!
My latest findings with regard to the weakest link of my system is the source. Streaming, while convenient, of the 272 is not comparable to CD transport at all. I fed the 272 via coaxial using it as a DAC only resulted in more punchy, rhythmic and special sound. It’s just an Oppo universal player.
Lot's of good options for you. I'm running an Ayre AX5/20 with my Vandy Quatro's and love it. Will be upgrading to Richard's new mono blocks I think, but if you can find a used AX5/20, it's a nice combo with your speakers. I've heard this combo on a few occasions and felt it was a wonderful match. So much speed and micro and macro detail. The tone was still spot on and it threw a wonderful soundstage. Never felt it was lacking in drive as it had plenty of power to run them. JMHO
Your Naim NAC N272 is upgradable with the addition of a Naim external power supply unit such as the XP5 XS, XPS or 555 power supply unit to achieve better sonic results. You should try that and will be rewarded with the results. Naim products can easily be upgraded by adding Naim's external PSU.
Yes indeed. Adding a Naim external PSU will significantly improve the sound quality and musicality.
Or alternatively there’s always room to upgrade to a higher end Naim standalone analog linestage preamp with external PSU and a separate Naim streamer + separate Naim DAC as well as upgrading to a higher end Naim power amp with external PSU, which will take the overall performance and musicality to a whole new level.
This upgrade path thing of Naim is both good and bad. Audiophiles always want to try something different and new, and Naim limits them from connecting gears of other brands. For instance, cannot connect with balance inputs/ outputs.
the Sopra N2 were voiced with the NAP 300DR, I’ve owned the Sopra N2, N3 and now Scala V2's and all sets I used the N272/555PS with a 250DR, 300DR and now N272/555PS/500DR, the 300DR is a very nice setup with the N272/555PS and don’t waste your money on a XPS
My Naim Statement gears have regular XLR balanced, RCA single-ended as well as DIN connections. For example, my Naim NAC S1 linestage preamp has 2 XLR, 3 RCA & 3 DIN inputs and has XLR, RCA & DIN outputs. And my Naim NAP S1 monoblock amps each has 1 XLR balanced input on each amp. So it tells you that you can connect and mix match from and to other brands.
I know that some Naim lower end gears (non Statement gears) have only DIN connections. However, I also own a Naim Uniti Nova in my bedroom setup and the Uniti Nova has regular XLR & RCA connections.
@atekelidis was right...the newer Focal speakers such as the Sopra no 3 and no 2 were voiced using Naim amplifications and electronics ever since the merger of the two.
JC1 monoblocks fed by PrimaLuna EVO 400 tube preamp here, fed by AURALiC G series digital. Have had the Sopra N*2 for over a year (in Audi Blue), and just love these things. The PrimaLuna puts a nice color on the sound, and the JC1s love some tube goodness at the preamp level.
Naim is awesome, but so many other options sound JUST as good or better (and many worse), so there is no "best pairing". Stay open.
BTW, I think Moon amplification (400M) is a bit over rated. I put up a pair of their monoblocks next to the JC1s and BHK 300s, not even close. Just my opinion, of course.
Spoke to a buddy of mine who owns one of the Naim pre and amps. He has Vandersteen's like Tomic does and loves the combo in a big way. He has owned Focal's in the past and I know he's always been a Naim guy, so I assume he liked the combo.
Guys, the power supplies will often make the largest difference. I have the best server/DAC in the world (my thoughts as well as a well respected reviewer at TAS, The Memory Player by Laufer Technik). They are going to break the whole power supplies out of the main box they JUST designed and will now isolate and clean the power in a way that can't be done in the same box. It's what many top designers do and it's because it means that much. I'd also look at installing a new Audioquest Hurricane or better power cord. I can promise you that it's about as good as it gets. Makes a tremendous difference.
I think Tomic has done something similar but I'm not sure.