'Does that mean time to upgrade for me?'
Yes, Semi, I'm afraid that means that it's upgrade time.
If you need to get rid of those old, antiquated, speaker boxes, let me know. I'm sure I can find a good retirement home for them.:-)
the drivers of the new Amati, are the same as Stradivari's (!!!) in tweeter and midrange and the woofers are the same type as Strad's but smaller from Seas. Practically is a smaller version of stradivari or a stradivari in a different box- a cremona look like box in Amati's size (ok just a thought).
And now they are in sumiko's site.
or how much more from the previous Amati ?
from what I read, should be the same price as original Amati Homage, or $24k retail.
The first review is out !
On Hi-Fi Choice / October.
A collectible issue with other ultra gear also.
My friend from Italy had last week oportunity to audition new Amati Anniversario in his home and to compare it to his Amati Hommage. His findings: Amati Anniversario is different and better sounding speaker. Tighter bass, midrange to die for, more organic from bottom to top.
Old Amati Hommage was slower sounding, also not so tight or forceful in bass. The Anniversario is more like 95% of Stradivari in different box.
Interesting thing-system was Audio Research VT200Mk2,REF2Mk2,CD3Mk2 but he also had Boulder 1060/1010 combo to try... New Anniversario was for him better sounding with Boulder combo. In bass difference was huge to him, tighter and deeper than with ARC gear. In fact he was as tube lover very confused since he liked sound of Anniversario more with Boulder.
I hope this will help. For me Anniversario is on top of my list!
I have heard them 2 weeks ago on The HiFi Show in London. They indeed do sound very similar to the more expensive Stradivaris and unlike almost all previous models (they are faster and much more transparent).
I will order Anniversario in few days. More when they arrive at my home( app. 1 month ).
Also, I heard from my Sonus Faber dealer that NEW GUARNERI MEMENTO will be introduced at CES2006 ( in Europe maybe even before new year ). Cabinet size more or less same size. Completly new drivers and crossover. It will be little bit more expensive than old Guarneri Hommage.
So, we will have all new Guarneri after more than a decade. Good news for all Sonus Faber fans out there!
I read in a Taiwan audio publication or web site a major designer in Scanspeak left the company to form his own speaker company which will in effect compete with Sonus Faber. As a result, Franco got upset and switched out as many Scanspeak drivers as possible. Check out his new Domus line, no Scanspeak except tweeter which is sourced from Vifa.
I am not thrilled about the new Anniversario styling especially the rear ports. Original Amati Homage is classy and elegant, Cremona is stylish targeted for younger audience, but Amati Anniversario seems like a bad blend of the two. Maybe I will change my mind when I see the real thing.
I've had about three hours worth of listening to a pair that is still breaking in. Right from the start, it is evident that this is quite a special speaker. Tonal balance is slightly on the warm side, but that does not mean it is muddled and inarticulate like many warmish speakers can be.
The image projected by this speaker is huge and the weight and power that these speakers are capable of delivering makes them exciting to hear.
If there is any weakness (keep in mind they were fresh out of the box), it would be a slight reticence (lack of projection) in the midrange and transients may be a touch soft.
I heard them in a Naim reference system (252 preamp, 300 amp CDS3 CDP). I have also heard the Stradivari in a completely different system utilizing a Boulder linestage and phono stage and custom OTL amps. That too, is quite a nice sounding speaker.
Both the Anniversario and the Stradivari are beautifully finished and both are actually smaller and easier to place in a room than one would expect from pictures.
As a former owner of Dynaudio Confidence 5, I know bass speed. C5 is a compounded bass design in a sealed cabinet and produced the fastest bass I have heard from any speakers. I have owned close to 30 pairs of speaker in the past 10 years, I hope I know what I am talking about. C5 became one of my favorite speaker of all time.
But after owning Amati, I discovered what I was missing all along. There is more to bass than just speed. Scanspeak woofers are not known to have the fastest bass, Seas/Eton/Accuton etc are better known for that. But real life bass is never super damped and tight and Scanspeak produces bass with superb balance of detail, speed, and warmth. My question is has Sonus Faber gone to the dark side and starts making hifi sounding speakers that has tremendous detail, speed, extension, but not music?
It took me a long time to love Amati after owning Extrema for years. Extrema was one speaker that can music no matter what you throw at it. Amati is much more finicky and required more care in upstream equipments and setup. Do I need to brain wash myself all over again and learn to love the "new" Sonus Faber sound?
Semi-I think you will love 'new' Sonus Faber sound. As I said I ordered Anniversarios and I will get them in 3 weeks time... My wife and I had a chance to audition it few days ago at our dealers. IMO new Aniversario is most emotional and beautiful sounding of all upper high end speakers. System was: ARC VM220/REF3 and Theta GenVIII/Compli. Regarding drivers in Anniversario tweeter is ScanSpeak( much modified and build to Francos specs ), midrange is Audiotechnology( danish company ) and bass units are 8inch versions of Strad drivers. In person Anniversario is more beautiful then old Amati, at least to me.
My wife liked their sound more than Stradivaris! I agree with her! Strad has grander scale( a little bit ) but, image precision and coherence is on Anniversarios side. Anniversario is warm and fast sounding speaker. Old Amati is inferior in every way, IMO. My friend from Italy also decided to swich to Anniversario after direct comparison in his home with old Amati. I know that you might be personally attached to your Amati Hommage but, simply speaking Anniversario is far better speaker. Choice of amp/pre combo will be important... I choose ARC system( REF210,REF3,REF CD7 ) for Anniversarios. Some other tubes will also work nicely-Jadis(more romantic sound),new VTLs etc. Some solid-state as well like Krell or Boulder and new DartZeel. In fact Sonus Faber use at the factory Berning 270 and Krell FPB350Mcx when they evaluate sound of their speakers( I heard a rumor that these two were used on voicing of Stradivari, Anniversario and new Guarneri Memento ).Did you had a chance to audition new Anniversarios?
I'm from Italy and I apologize for my limited English, but as owner of Amati Homage i like to share in few words my impressions on my listening session with Anniversario, by a dealer.(not in my set up)
Well, from an aesthetic side I like a lot more the Homage, the back side is more elegant and refined in construction. ( I guess more expensive too to build) Binding post are also better located and built, imho. Not to mention that with Anniversario you cannot tune the bass extention, and so the while sound, by partially closing one of the rear port.
On the sound now, Anniversario seems to be a bit faster in the bass section but lacks the liquid and rich midrange of Homage, where lies, to me, the magic of this speaker. I listen to a very good hi end speaker but without emotion. Highs were well defined and never strident, not different from Homage. Soundstage is a lot wider and deeper in my set up but this is due to room and electronics. I have to say that my system is different,(and better to my ears) so these are just impressions. I'm ready to change my mind if got the chance to have the two in my room.
Mc Intosh "second" from top line, sorry don't remember the numbers. Source Accuphase 57. Furutech top line cabling.
AA Capitole mk2
Plinius Sa Ref
Argent Pulsar S cables
ps I have got a brief listen to Stradivari too, another story.....not comparable at all with Anniversario, IMHO.
Well, since Almas findings are quite opposite from mine few things need to be cleared. 1)Three different persons that I know and trust in thier findings have almost the same opinion as I do and all of them are switching from Amati Hommage to Anniversario. 2)New Anniversario is more expensive to build then old Amati. Call Sonus Faber, that is the fact( terminals on old Amati is WBTs, on Anniversario costum build for Sonus Faber-same as on Stradivari). 3) Anniversario is more modern sounding than old Amati but, also emotional sounding speaker. Some people maybe won't like them more than old Amati but, I bet they will have more fans than old Amati.
Of course, all of this is IMHO.
The only thing "need to be cleared" to me is :
Argent Pursang S , not Pulsar.
Branimir and Alma, please don't use this thread as the battle ground. We are here to help each other by giving your opinion, not saying who is right or wrong.
I am sure everyone will agree sound & look are very personal. I can't comment on the Anniversario sound since I haven't heard it. But I do know I like the old styling better. Another thing that puzzled me was the weight of the Anniversario, it weighs 25 lb lighter than Amati Homage EACH! I haven't compared the physical size of the two speakers, but I assumed they should be close. 25 lb is a lot of weight to lose and I don't know how Sonus Faber pulled it off.
As for cost, no one except Sonus Faber finance depart will know the exact figure. But general rule of thumb is topline WBT binding post is about as expensive as it gets. I also own Cremona, binding post on that is like a toy in comparison. Woodwork is both time consuming and costly, both required world class craftsmanship. But what happens inside the speaker is a mystery unless someone volunteer to take out the drivers to compare. I know Amati Homage has very extensive damping inside using copper plates, not sure about Anniversario.
I do hope Anniversario is as good or better sounding than Amati Homage to keep Sonus Faber in the prestige league. But as I already mentioned, I have owned most of the top end Sonus Faber in the past and Sonus Faber continues to move away from its "house sound" generation by generation.
But my check book will be ready if Anniversario proved to be as good as it claimed.
At the end of my respone I said IMHO. It doesn't have to be same as yours or anybody elses. I consider myself Sonus Faber fan(of Sonus sound) and I could agree with Semi that some people will be suspicious regarding new Anniversario.
Best thing is to compare both speakers in the same room.
Only then end results will be good or bad for each one of us.
I made my mind and ordered new Anniversario.
In fact I recently had a chance to audition new Concerto Domus at the lenght. I liked the way they sounded but, my best friend said to me that he likes sound of the old school better(Electa Amator2,Sigmun etc.). So, really no hard feelings from my side!
As Sonus Faber owners we all know the break-in importance for these speakers, I think that we must give more time to the new Anniversario to "breathe" and show what it gots. My dealer haven't brought it yet it's a very new speaker.
In my opinion Alma's system is far better than his dealer and the room is different so it's not safe 100% his findings respected though. In my opinion the new midrange is the best there is I 've big experience from Verity's speakers that use it and especially Sarastro. Also have in mind that the inventor and creator of Scanspeak is mr. Skaaning now owner of Audio Technology (midrange provision) and IMO Skanspeak is not the same without him. The tweeter is from skanspeak but with heavy modifications and with a round wooden labyrinth behind it. The seas bass cones did marvels with the Stradivari.
Summing up I don't know how the new Anniversario would go wrong.....only time and a lot of listening-sessions will tell IMHO.
no battle at all in my intention, as owner of Homage just my first personal and limited experience with Anniversario.
I'm sure Branimir is right in his experience, mine was just different, at today.
I also hope Anniversario is a better sounding spk than Homage, at least it will avoid to me to save lot of money for Stradivari !!
Anniversario is lighter and a bit smaller too.
As for cost, I mean that just the back side of Homage seems to me more expensive to build up,incluse the binding post, I don't know either what happens inside.
I upgraded from Guarneri Homage to Amati Homage last March without knowledge of the Anniversario. I was at first very disappointed after finding out about the Anniversario. But after careful consideration, I have come to the following conclusion: The Amati will stay with me. Regardless of how the Anniversario sounds, and I'm sure it sounds wonderful, I simply cannot imagine a more lifelike and engaging presentation I have achieved with the Homage, especially in the midrange. Nothing I have heard anywhere approaches this aspect of the speaker. I thought the midrange of the Guarneri was about as good as it gets, but the midrange of the Amati Homage is in a different league. In addition, I do not care for the styling of the Anniversario. It is not as elegant as the Homage, and looks more like a glossy Cremona. Considering the lost weight, the new binding posts, the flat front baffle, I would guess it's less costly to build. Of course this is just one user's opinion. To put my comments in total context, the rest of my system consists of Cary CAD-845SEI integrated amp, Aesthetix Rhea phono stage, VPI TNT V Hot Rod with Sumiko Celebration cartridge, and Harmonic Technology cables. There is no CD player in my system.
Glad to hear we can all live in peace.
I do agree Alma has better front end than his dealer, I heard the Audio Aero Capitole several times and each time I told myself I should get one someday.
I am also well aware Mr. Skanning is the founder of Dynaudio, Scanspeak, and Skanning (Audio Technology). Many have claimed the best Skanning drivers ever made was the one in Extrema. As an Extrema owners for years, I do find Amati to have better mid overall from transparency, detail, imaging, and other perspectives. To say Scanspeak is behind is probably not a fair statement, Scanspeak does have many brilliant engineers that continue to create world class drivers. Also, I am really not a big fan of polypropolyne (sp?) cone after owning Dynaudio for years. I found plastic cones to have a distinctive sound where carbon impregnated paper cone to have less "sound". Mr. Skanning might be a genious and he agrees metal cones are the worst, but his choice of cone material does not suite my "taste". But then speaker sound is a lot more than driver choices and Franco has proved that theory over and over again.
Play my Amati last night, still wondering how can it be improved?
Semi-I agree with you regarding plastic cones. But, as you said speaker is more then just drivers... Interesting thing is that Guarneri Hommage is using also Audiotechnology(sp?) midwoofer and we all know that Guarneri is pure magic.
New Guarneri Memento will use different tweeter( same as Anniversario and Strad I think) and new Audiotechnology midwoofer and I hope it will be either as good or better then old Guarneri. Also rumor about important person who left Scanspeak is truth. He was in charge for costum drivers( for Sonus but, also for some other brands )...
After that Franco made the decision and swithced to other drivers-result:Stradivari Hommage,Amati Anniversario and new Guarneri Memento(from january 2006).
If you are interested to see more of inside Sonus Faber factory( beautiful modern building ) check out Sonus Faber Denmark fan club web side http://www.sonusfaberclub.com/
There are lots of stuff on it. Factory tour is a must! Finally we can see who is building our speakers.
Imagine just that, a bit of improvement (even a small one) this speaker must be the ONE.
But the Amati soul lives in both of them so there is no need to worry about and we all know that our path may lead us someday to the Stradivari's.
I only wish we all Amati fans (Homage or Anniversario) had listening experiences together and share the fun but I guess the distance is big.
This I can share. I have gone thru several power amps (Pass Labs, Accuphase, ARC, Sonic Frontiers, BAT VK-150, and some others can't remember right now) and BAT VK-75SE (or VK-150SE) really brings out the soul of Amati.
I had some reservation with BAT 75SE initially due to its low power rating. But speaking to Sonus Faber importer in Denmark who has access to many other fine power amps including Rowland he liked BAT VK-75SE best. The difference is not subtle - solid imaging, speed, rise and decay of each note, bass extension, transparency, and details to spare. I was so impressed I almost bought a second one to bridge if it wasn't the small room. I am sure Tenor OTL or Atma-Sphere OTL will be equally impressive or better, but BAT is tough to beat.
What do you guys use?
Alma, I've not heard the Amati Homage or the new Anniversario, but I have auditioned the Stradivari. In your post of September 30, you mention that you briefly listened to the Stradivari and state "not comparable to Anniversario, IMHO." I can only assume that meant you didn't like it as much, or perhaps not at all. As I have been considering the Stradivari for possible purchase, your observations would be of interest to me. Could you elaborate a little more about the comparison between Stradivari and Anniversario or Amati Homage?
Amati Hommage-I heard it with Accuphase A60, Pass X250, Audio Research VT200MkII and Lamm M2.1-sound was best with ARC, Lamm close second...
New Amati Anniversario-Audio Research VT200MkII, Audio Research VM220, Boulder 1060 and Krell FPB450Mcx-choice here was tough, all of them sounded good. My friend liked Boulder best, Krell was second( he owns ARC VT200MkII!) for him. I decided that tubes are the way to go and my Anniversario will be powered by new Audio Research Reference 210/Reference3/Reference CD7 system( but, I will keep my eyes on Boulder and Krell, someday who knows?).
I also heard that Jadis JA200, DartZeel NHB108, Conrad Johnson Premier 350 and VTL S-400 are working nicely...
Minimum impendance of Anniversario is around 2.5ohms in bass, we should also keep that in mind...
Just received my Amati Anniversario's. More comments in two week time(break-in issue)...
Aniversario's are break-in nicely... I think about ten more days to reach full potential.
In the mean time new Guarneri Memento is released mpre info is on http://www.sonusfaberclub.com/news/memento.asp
Branimir - How difficult are the new Amati's to drive. Would a cj prem140 ( 140 watts tube power) be sufficient to drive thye speakers in a large room.
Are the speakers revealing or kind to not so good recordings.
Downunder, Anniversario's could be driven with CJ Prem140 without any problems. I would say that 80W/ch(tube!!) is a minimum for Anniversario's, SS around 120W/ch. You can find my room size on my system thread.
They are revealing and kind to not so good recordings-this will depend very much on your front end(analog or digital).
I enjoy Anniversario's very much(and my wife even more!)...
Thanks Branimir. Doing the sums the Amati might be past the budget.
How does the cremona do full range in a large room?.
I am looking for speakers that can be driven well by tubes.
Downunder, Are you selling your Mahlers? Cremona is wonderful speaker for the money(most emotional one in that price range, IMO!) but, they are not going that deep in bass as your Mahlers. Kops and Semi both own Cremona's so, they will able to help you even more...
On the other hand with CJ Prem140 you will be able to get the best out of Cremona's.
Branimir. Yes I am looking at selling my Mahlers - too hard to drive and don't really sound that great at lower volumes - they seem to need current and volume.
I just listened to the Wilson Sophias and SF Cremona at the local ho fi shop. Wilson, uninvolving, sterile and lifeless. Cremona a lot better more natural sounding - no comparison really, however the bass was not that great so were a little lite and airy sounding - no meat on the bones.
I was about to leave and stopped by the bigger demo room and they had a pair of Strativari's. They hooked them up, quickly and switched on the pass X350's from cold and I listened for the next 25 minutes.
They sounded AMAZING. This is the first time that a store setup has sounded superior in every to my home system. The best thing is that the Strats seem to have a tonal weight and convection in the upper bass/lower mids that gave all the music a organic feel. the rest of the bass however was nice and tight. I play a lot of rock, pop,alternative, so having a warmer balance with transparency and able to rock out is what I am looking for. The Strat seemed to do that in spades IMO. They also don't take up that much room as they are quite shallow.
I am seriously thinking about buying the demo model as they are going to offer me a good deal. Trouble is I have to convince the wife to spend all our savings!.
I know you liked the Amati, however they don't have that on demo so stuck what to buy. Amati unheard or pick up a reasonable good deal on the Strats that I literally fell in luv with.
If I do buy, is it better to stick with my prem350 or go to prem140??
Downunder, I am glad that you like Strad! I like Anniversario even more but, both are emotional champs!
Anniversario is more coherent than Strad with more precise and stable soundstage, also faster in bass. Strad has grander scale(a little bit) as you found out. Both are excellent choice(only personal preferences will move us to one or another, IMO)...
CJ Prem350 or Prem140?? Let me give you very strange answer-stick with Prem350, sell your VTL TL7.5 and add CJ ACT2! Since both Prem350 and ACT2 invert phase you will not need to change polarity on your speakers and synergy will be great! Brown and finesse of Prem350 with warmth and resolution of ACT2. VTL TL7.5 is excellent preamp but, it is fully balanced design that sound very best via balanced connection as my ARC REF3. Your Prem350 is single ended in its natur... Also I heard Prem350/ACT2 combo and it is amazing stuff. If you want to stick with VTL TL7.5 than you might change your amp to VTL S-400... Synergy is IMO everything!
Does the anniversario have the same upperbass/lower mid tonal weight that the strad has?. I would think not( but I could be wrong), as the large baffle would contribute to that - personally that is what I like about the strad sound. Similar to the Naim DBL's I listened to a long time ago in weight.
having that extra weight in the bass is also good for rock and pop. I would be afraid that I would loose a bit of bass weight re- anniverario v mahler - of course gain in most other area's.
Downunder, You are probably right... Then again difference between Strad and Anniversario is more question of personal taste, IMO. Downside of large baffle is not so coherent sound and lack of pin point imaginig. Strad is slower sounding then Anniversario, this might also contribute to fuller sound that Strad has in upper bass/lower midrange. With either Strad or Anniversario you will have true world class speaker, IMHO.
If the price is OK for you go for Strad.
Branimir. Price is always an issue and we always want to spend less money. Anniversario is considerably cheaper than Strad, but I cannot hear the Anniversario. I guess if I like the Strads I will like the Anni.
Looking at your system's it would seem that you like a nice fast, pinpoint system as Krell and ARC have that in spades. me with VTL and cj, I prefer things just a little more laid back and fuller.
Did you indicate that in the upper mids and treble, both Anni and Strad sound pretty much the same?. Is it the lower mids andf below where they deviate somewhat.
Which speaker is more forgiving to not so good recordings or is that a non issue?. As I have a lot of them and want to get the maximum enjoyment out of good and not so good recordings.
Anyway, I am going to have another listen to the strad today to see if it still has the same magic I heard yesterday.
As you clearly pointed out differences between Strad and Anni is in lower midrange and bass. Both speakers are going to about 25Hz(in room) without any problems. As I said before Strad has more grander presentation but, it has shortcomings in soundstage coherence and is slower then Anni. Both are good for bad recordings, you can tune them with their grill(I almost allways listen with grills)
and they both look excellent with or without grills. Price issue: Europe-Strad(Euro30K),Anni(Euro19K) ; USA-Strad($40K),Anni($28K). If you choose any of them I belive you will be very happy. Of course, if Strad fits your budget go for it! When you will go to audition Strad bring your worst(!!) popular music recording, if you will like the sound then you will know what to do...