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Opuslab, I demoed a pair for a solid 2.5 hours with lots of different music and a Hegel 300 Integrated, completely blown away, the speakers showed me how good my Hegel is. I will be ordering a pair in the next few weeks, after the Axpona show in Chicago.
I will be demoing a few other speakers at the show, but can't imagine any outperforming the Focals at their price point. Fun time to be in the market for speakers. I also demoed the Wilson Sabrina, very nice, but not as good as the Focal Sopra and a couple thousand more.
Try to audition Bowers Wilkins CM5S2 (not CM9s, althou those are very good as well) with open mind. Yes they are 1/6 price of the Focals, but never mind their pricing. Pretend they cost 10 grand. Take your ECM records with you, you d be pleasantly surprised me thinks.... Don’t listen to the B&Ws with any Naim, Linn,&other lifeless gear. Even cheaper Marantz integrated at the Best Buy would give you much more musical sound.... Also they play nice with Rega amps....
I am working on a review of Sopra 2s for HomeTheaterReview.com. I got them in white and they are really nice looking. They sound just as good as they look. They are in fact so good that I want to improve the acoustics of my room (hard to do by design) so the room lives up to the potential of the speakers.
I am powering them with Classe which is great. Also try Pass Labs Class-A stuff if you really want to go over the top.
I am running the Sopra 2 on a Supernait 2 and the results are amazing. Focal excels at delicate airy treble. At low listening levels they are so satisfying permeating every part of the Listening Room with they're amazing presence. I think this synergistic match is not an accident. Naim's ultra rich, settled sound is perfectly complimented by the Focals.
Dealer disclaimer for Focal & Naim but still my true feelings!
I have Sopra 2's (Wadia S7i CD/ Bryston BP26 pre/Bryston 7B3 Amps) I'm currently using OCOS Triple twist speaker cable but feel the Sopras deserve better. Would like to upgrade the speaker cable. If anyone has come across a spkr cable that really gave an eye opening improvement would love to know what you went from/to. Extremely happy with the Sopras but you all know how this sport goe$.
If you are considering the Sopra No. 2, you should really check out the Sopra No. 3 if it's still within your budget constraints. I auditioned both the "2" and the "3" and ended up buying the "3". Everything the Sopra No. 2 does well, the Sopra No. 3 does better, and in some cases a lot better. IMHO the superiority of the Sopra No. 3 easily justifies the cost difference.
I also agree completely with earlier comments that the electronics can make a big difference in sound quality with these speakers. I'm driving my Sopra No.3's with the ARC Reference 150, Reference 5se, and Reference CD9.
If you like Focal, Sopra's or Utopia you have to hear them with Devialet - you won't find better without spending ten's of thousands more.
Both Focal and Devialet work very well with good copper - Analysis Plus Solo Crystal 8 has bested many more expensive brands although I still belive there's even better to be found - maybe the new Lessloss C-marc?
Forget Nordost - unless you're using a fluffy warm tube amp.