Sonus Faber Venere S - What amp to choose? I'm at a crossroads!


I recently purchased a pair of Sonus Faber Venere S (wood) and want to upgrade my amplifier to something better suited for the speakers. It sounds really good but I think the speakers need a little more horsepower to push them.

I currently have a Jolida 502CRC sporting Gold Lion KT88s (rated @ 60wpc) and has the upgrade 1 package from Jolida. I have also complimented it with a 10awg power cable and Kimber 12tc.

The remainder of my system is:
Denon DP47f w/ Pickering XSV3000 Cart / LPgear Vivid Line stylus (recapped)
Jolida JD9 Phono Pre Amp w/ Upgrade pkg and Mullard Tubes
Binary B7 Silver interconnects

The speakers have a nominal impedance of 4ohms but I’ve read that on bass extension it can drop as low as 2.1ohms.
Also, I need to stay with an integrated amp.

In my mind I have 3 choices that will fit my budget that I am considering:

1> Keep the Jolida and start spending money on tube rolling to achieve a better sound?
     I dislike the trial and error aspect of this option and no headphone amp.

2> One of my good friends has a PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium HP that I can buy (EL34 @ 70wpc / KT88 @ 80wpc)
Sell the Jolida 502 amp and buy this? I also like that it has a headphone amp built in @ $3,000 used.

3> McIntosh MA252 - I like the Tube/SS Hybrid and it is aesthetically pleasing. 160wpc @ 4ohms also helps. has headphone out and phono stage built in @ $4,000
Sell the Jolida 502 amp and JD9 Phono and buy this?

I’d love to hear your thoughts and opinions.

Thanks!



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"It sounds really good but I think the speakers need a little more horsepower to push them."

You like what you hear., keep it.

Relax...listen to music. I wouldn't get caught up in paper specs if your ears hear what they like.

Classic audio nervosa symptom.

I have the PL HP, yes, it would be a considerable upgrade over the Jolida. The phonostage is equivalent to $300 entry level unit. Fine if you're not serious about record playback. Otherwise, your JD9 is worth keeping.

Can you be more specific about what improvements you're looking for the amp to provide?  Looks like you're wanting to stay with tubes, or is SS an option?
SS is definitely an option. I am looking for the same laid back tube sound but with more bass response and authority. It is a large family room/kitchen in an open concept home... or I could just go 2.1.
Since you like the sound you’re getting and are not opposed to adding a sub, I’d definitely go that route. Not only will it bring you to full range, but your whole soundstage will open up and expand and your amp may not have to work as hard depending on which sub you choose. If it were me, I’d get a Vandy 2Wq sub as they’re extremely musical and offer a unique design that works with your existing system and eases integration. There’s one available now...

https://tmraudio.com/speakers/subwoofers/vandersteen-2wq-powered-subwoofer-mahogany-finish-x-2-cross...

Hard to imagine making a bigger improvement for relatively so little money. Best of luck.
Go with the big Prima Luna or consider a BAT VK-3000SE as an alternative...
Your Jolida amp is 60wpc and the Prima Luna HP integrated (I am familiar with this amp as my friend has one) is 70-80wpc. It won’t sound much better as you would only be going up 10-20 watts! The Prima Luna sounds excellent with the KT150 tubes and that would give you 100wpc. You could consider that option although 8 KT150 tubes will run you at least 800.00 new. I also briefly heard the McIntosh amp you mentioned when I was at Audio Classics picking up some McIntosh equipment for myself. It is quite powerful and still gives you some of that tube sound. How much compared to the Prima Luna I couldn’t say. I think the best sound would be the Prima Luna HP Integrated with KT150 tubes. I found the KT120 tubes don’t sound that great in the Prima Luna. Second best would be the McIntosh. I saw one on here a few days ago at a steal, not sure if it sold or not. No affiliation. The Prima Luna HP amp will sound like your friends, only with a lot more balls with the KT150 tubes.
If you want help with which amps work best with Sonus Fabre Venere S
why not go to their member blog and get it straight from people
who own this product? Perhaps you have and doing a cross comparison?