Lush, warm sound. I can live with these. Absolutely incredible when I heard female vocals. You do need space as they are not small.
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Adding to John. They are serious rivals for the Amati, they DO need serious amplification. Control is necessary in the bass. They have dynamics -- but again you need power to bring these to the surface.
I heard them with YBA Passion stereo and mono. The mono was considerably better than the stereo (which, with other speakers, it is not considerably better). Also, they're beautiful to look at, let alone listen to. Last, they're cheaper than the bigger brother (sister). Morale: If you can drive them acceptably to your ears, buy them.
Had Cremona for a while and upgraded to Amati. Amati has better everything and it should be at its asking. Top end is more extended and much more liquid; that's one area Cremona really falls short - top end can be edgy and bright. When listening to violin, you immediately notice how dry and bright Cremona sounds. Amati does not have as much midrange body as Cremona, but Amati presents lightening quick midrange and resolves more details (rival my previous reference speakers Dynaudio Confidence 5 which has 2" Esotar midrange dome). Bass is another area Amati does better. Amati has better definition and speed, Cremona seems to be boomy and very sensitive to room placement.
My observation was confirmed by my local SF dealer where they found Cremona to be very sensitive to room placement and can be bright and boomy if not setup very very carefully. The only other speaker I had that problem in my room was Wilson Watt/Puppy 5.1, but problem was easily solved once I put them on their dedicated spikes.
So for what they are worth, Cremona seems to be a bargain. But if look is not critical to you, you PROBABLY can get equal or better sound from Dynaudio Contour 3.3 or SF Extrema which I used to own as well.
Diminishing return certainly applies here, but I will recommend Amati over Cremona any day.
I have to second Semi's response, the Amati is in an entirely differet league than the Cremona. The Amatis (along with the Guanari & Electa Amator) are quite special but the Cremona can be overly bright and rough in the uppermids and the bass can be quite boomy and uncontrolled. They are more in line with $5 speakers (like the Dynaudio 3.0 and B&W N803 which I prefer over the Cremonas) not $7.5K ones. I had high hopes for these speakers, they do look very nice, but was disappointed with the sound. BTW did anyone else notice how many of them came up for sale used right after they were released? I guess more than a few thought the sound would live up to the look.
I beg to differ only slightly: given the prices of SF, the Cremona for THE MONEY rivals the Amati for THEIR MONEY. In the Cremona you get SF sound, and a floorstander at that, with good capabilities overall -- but difficult placement.
Otherwise, sonically the Cremona doesn't wash vs the Amati (IMHO & my deaf ears). Semi's experience gives insight, although I never found the Cremona mids at par with Amati (preferred the latter), I too noticed the shortcomings he notes. Cheers!