SF Cremona Auditors - Recommend new Amp/CD

Greeting Agon!

Relatively new to the hobby, but after going to a Sumiko dealer, I came home with a pair of Sonus Faber Cremona Auditors, Primare CD31, Primare integrated I30, Rel B2 sub, Audioquest Volcano speaker cables and Cheetah Interconnect cables. Picked up 3 Shunyata Taipan Power chords to help system.

Obviously, this is a "Sumiko" sponsored system, and overall I'm happy with it, but I think the electronics can be improved.

Room is 14x14 with a ceiling that goes from 10 to 15 feet high with the speakers on the 10 foot side. The room is open to other parts of the house, so not completely closed off. DIY room treatments have been made, but improments are greatly needed in this area. Echo busters (bass traps, corner traps, and first reflections, rear reflections will be in the mix soon).

My musical preferences vary from rock to classical and jazz. Acoustic rock, live rock, even some spacy, ambient rock is the preference (Pink Floyd, Jack Johnson, Incubus, Thievery Corp, Beck). Powerful classical is fun, don't really enjoy the piano/violin solos, prefer a full orchestra pieces by Mendelssohn or Berlioz for example. Miles Davis or John Coltrane are also enjoyed. Female vocals are a favorite, Zero 7, Norah Jones, etc.


Primare is pretty good, but not very clean. Sound is "edgy" sometimes. Soundstage could be more refined and intimate. Enjoy the "warmth" but doesn't seem "real" enough.

Really enjoy the Sonus Faber sound, sound was real and soulfull at the dealer. So I think would like to stay with that Sonus Faber sound, but looking for a CD and integrated amp combo or even a Preamp and power amp recommendation.

Auditioned a Wilson Audio Sophia 2 with all VTL and really enjoyed the spacing (quickness), soundstage, power and realism of the system. The sound was extended but not bright or overbearing (bright and "in your face" is something I don't like). Obviously two different systems, but again, I'm new and still learning what I like and what I don't.

Thanks for the help!
Very nice speakers, I have the Cremona floorstanders and find that they match very well with tube amplification.

I use 2 different systems. One is ARC pre and power VT130SE/LS15, blooming midrange, great for jazz/vocals/small classical ensembles. The other one is CJ Premier 17LS pre and VTL MB450 mono power amps, much faster and more dynamic, tighter bass, great for reproducing symphonies.

But I would not describe those systems as efficient for playing rock music... if you want a more versatile amp maybe you should consider SS with a tubey signature like Plinius 9200 or YBA Passion or McIntosh 6900 for the integrated ones. You may also consider SS amp with tube preamp (or the other way round), many combinations are possible... it's all about system matching

If you go for tube amplification then I would recommend that you stick to a pretty neutral/transparent source but with authoritatve bass such as Wadia (I use the 830). If you go for SS amp then you may want to consider a smoother/warmer sounding player like the Audio Aero or Electrocompaniet or YBA

Accuphase also makes great equipment that could fit your requirement...

Keep us posted!
Anybody try the Cremona Auditors and VTL 5.5 preamp? How about a VTL 5.5 paired with a Mccormack 225 SS power amp?

How about a Plinius 9100?

Open to any suggestions (searched the site, not much with direct comparisions to Primare...)
Hi Joel,

Thanks for the recommendations! Funny we are thinking the same things, I posted before I saw your post! Plinius 9200 has been at the top of my list for a while, and VTL captivated me. I will definately look into Accuphase and see if it'll fit the bill =)

Leaning towards a Plinius 9200 for integrated, or a VTL 5.5 pre and 250 monos or perhaps a solid state Mccormack 225. Possibilities are endless, love this new hobby...