I don't own Cremonas nor Auditors, but I have good friends who do on my recommendation. Both use the McIntosh MA6900 integrated amp. Cremonas are 4 ohm speakers and don't put most SS amps in their best sounding load. The Mac autoformer amps sound sensational on these speakers, plus the speaker needs more power to sound good than it's 90db/w/m efficiency rating might otherwise indicate. When I considered building 2 systems around both speakers, I was consistently pleased with the synergy between all the Mac autoformer amps and the big and small Cremonas. If you can hear Cremonas and Mac amps together at one dealership, treat yourself to a few moments of amazement and ask to hear the Cremonas wired up to a pair of MC1201s. $16,000 or amps on $8000 of speakers makes perfect sense when you hear that.
I have the auditors mated to a Mac6900 and an audio aero prima CD. The 6900 has plenty of power and I can listen intently for hours without any fatigue. They are a great mate to one another. Friends are always amazed at how good music can sound, but they are all part of the ipod crowd. However, I admit that I'd like to try tubes... It's funny that regardless of how good it may sound, you always think there is something better.
You also asked about a sub in the next post. I have it mated to a REL strata III. I've been trying to pick-up a second one for stereo subs, but they go quick on the used market. It doesn't muck the sound at all and supports the low end very nicely.
Until now I heard only MAC autoformers and MC6900. Are there any other options for powering Sonus Faber Cremona / Cremona Auditors ?
I would suggest you listen to the Musica, by Sonus Faber. It is a lot better amp then many believe. It is very musical and it will balance Extremely well with the lower end SFs. I auditioned a couple amps--YBA, Musica, Krell; and ultimately stepped up for the Musica.
I was wondering if any had opinions with the Jeff Rowlands stuff?
JR with Cremonas or Auditors.....nooooooo. Cold, cold cold.
213cobra>Do you mean as in sterile sounding? I am sorry but I am not really audiophile. I just like something which would partner well with the electronics I have
I've paired my cremonas with BAT VK-300X SE integrated. Plenty of muscle to drive the cremonas - musical and sweet sounding.
Did anyone try pairing up Plinius 9200, YBA Passion Integre , Musical Fidelity Trivista 300 Integrated, CARY SLI-80, CJ CAV 50 with SF Cremona (or) Cremona Audiotrs ? Can you provide some feedback please ?
Hi - Great question by the way. I too am interested in the responses here. Let me first say that I am not an expert by no means so I will share with you my experience and pass along what I was told and maybe someone else can confirm and or refute the following. I auditioned the cremonas at the local Magnolia store and they paired them up with all Primare stuff. They also told me that Sonus worked with Primare alot (strategic? I dont know), however I have never validated that. I will say though, the setup had the most impressive soundstage that I have ever experienced. They also ran mont blanc cables and attributed some of the detail to the cables. Anyway - my quest continues to determine whether I will go B&W, JM Labs or Sonus. I really liked the Cremonas.
Used a krell 400xi and an ASL hurricane driven directly with Wadia player both combo were very synergistic. It is not hard to find a amp that sounds good with Cremonas or Auditors. Both are way better than the Primare stuff IMHO
I use a Classe CP-65 pre with a B&K amp on my Cremonas and have also heard them with Mark Levinson and Edge separates. I particular like the Edge and Classe electronics with the Cremonas.
For integrated amps I auditioned Cremona's with Primare and with the Pathos Classic One. The Pathos was much richer sounding, with more detail. The cables were mid-range Nordost, but I do not remember which ones. I would skip the Primare.
I heard the Cary SLI-80 with SF Grand Pianos (home, not current Domus) and it did not really bring the Grand Pianos to life - not enough detail and the Sonus Faber musical sound did not just come through. It may do differently with Cremonas.
There is definitely a Primare-Sonus connection in the US as there are both distributed by Sumiko. Not sure that translates back to Primare and Sonus working on development together, however.
I am confused by the Jeff Rowland / Sonus Faber Auditor remarks indicating "cold, cold, cold". I wonder what the problem really was. I use the Ayre C5xe, JR concerto, SF Auditors & REL B-3. All interconnects, speaker cables and power cords are Cardas Golden reference. Power conditioning by PS Audio P500 with the UPC 200 as a pre-filter. Warm, detailed, musical, lots of air, all one looks for in hi fi.
The Rowland amps are quite lifeless, but clean. Sterile, dry, toneless. I am characterizing this relatively. They particularly sound this way into 4 ohm speakers. I have heard JR on Cremona Auditors and thought the resulting sound lacked body, tone, and dynamic expression. It just didn't sound like music, which I know the Auditors are capable of. In an integrated, the Mac MA6900 is far better for that speaker.
Phil, I auditioned the Mac. I bought the Rowland. I am not gettting the results you describe. Perhaps its your front end or cables creating your problem.
I was using a Pass Labs X-1 linestage and VAC PA-160 MkII power amps. The VAC's were run with 6CA7 output tubes in triode. In truth, I could use a bit more power but the sound was all you could ask for.
I have owned Cremonas and Auditors together and still have the latter and have used the SF Musica and Pathos Classic 1 Mk2 which were excellent, but by far the most enjoyable for me to date with these two speakers has been the Unison Research Performance intergrated.
There was no problem with the front end or cables when I listened to Rowland and Mac autoformer amps on the same systems. Some people prefer the Rowland sound, IME. I'm not one of them and simply report why and what I hear. And what I describe has been consistent with Rowland in any combination of gear I've heard them in. They carry a distinct signature that apparently resonates with some folks. It is a clean, analytical, clinical sound that works for some. Rowland amplification to me, whether ICE or normal topology, hasn't risen above hifi sound and has lacked tone evident in the acoustics of real instruments. But its sins are of more of omission than commission, to my ears. That is, they do not introduce fatigue factors or obvious distortions. In the overall scheme of things, good amps well made. Compared to Mac autoformer amps, not in the same league by my evaluation.
The Mac when used with the SF Auditors did not bring to life the inner harmonics and detail of good recordings like Patricia Barber Night Club SACD. The Mac lacked weight and had no finesse. The sound was sluggish and thin. The Rowland on the other hand had all of the characteristics I enjoy with tubes in combination with the dynamics of solid state. The sound stage is so true to life it is at times a little spooky. I wonder if Mac owners just like to be able to say the own Mac.