Used Sonus Faber vs. New Entry level SF?


Hi - I recently auditioned the Sonus Faber newer Chameleon speakers and liked the mids and highs; not sure on the lows - seemed a bit light and not tight - could have been the room, and I could add a sub if needed. 

There are not many reviews on these Chameleons so I'm trying to decide whether to put my money on a 'higher end' used pair of SF like the Grand Piano Home at $1800 used (or other used SF) vs. the new Chameleon's for about the same price.  Thanks for any advice  
kansas400
To me, it's a no brainer, if you find a used set that is in like new or excellent condition.  Speakers tend to depreciate in price so fast that you can get much better speakers for the same price as new ones.  The only caveat would be if the new model sports some advance in the tweeters or mids that the older model doesn't have.  But I don't think SF has made any such advance.
Since the SF seem to have the same house sound, I would definitely go used.  You get so much more for the money.  Newer drivers do not always mean more musical.
Go for used

 Definitely go used. Search by zip code and see what is available used in your area. Some of the inexpensive Sonus Faber speakers were made in China. The quality, especially of the finish is not nearly as good as the speakers made in Italy. I have Elipsa SE and they are superb. The bass is tight and well defined. You just need to take a little care in setup to get the bass right.


Rumor has it the Venere line is going away, so I assume the Chameleon is the replacement plan.  I had the Venere 2.5s in my system on extended loan, and from reviews and customer feedback I've read the Chameleons seem very similar in sound and build quality.  For those who haven't heard these newer and cheaper SF offerings, they are NOT woven from the same cloth as their more expensive siblings.  In fact, they're completely different to the point where if you like one you probably won't take to the other. 

My experience with the Venere 2.5s was very mixed.  While they did a good job from the mids on up (at least for my tastes), they lacked lower bass dynamics and appear to have tried to mitigate that by boosting the upper bass.  In this region they sounded bloated and out of balance, and no amount of placement experimentation got rid of it.  Some of it I'm sure was due to the very thin and light cabinet that resonated quite readily at moderate to higher listening levels.  Further, build quality was below par and one of the holes for the spikes was stripped on delivery.  I noticed in one of the reviews the Chameleons had a problem with spikes too, which doesn't bode well for build quality of the new model. 

So to me this speaker speaker seems like a similar product to the Venere with different clothes but with the same mission of appealing to younger generations with a lower price and a brighter sound.  More traditional and expensive SF speakers are NOT bright sounding, and if anything lean toward the more polite or laid back side of the sonic spectrum.  Having heard the Grand Pianos I can tell you they sound nothing like the Veneres and likely not the Chameleons either.  So given that you seem to like the more detailed presentation of the Chameleon I'd recommend looking to another brand in this price range. 

Some that I'd consider if buying new in this price range would be Silverline Prelude Plus, Revel M36, Monitor Audio Silver 300, or the Ascend Acoustics Sierra Tower (sold direct with in-home demo possible -- a big plus and fantastic speakers).  All of these will have superior build quality and will also likely sound better balanced and just better overall than the cheaper offerings from Sonus Faber.  Sorry if I'm a buzzkill here, but just relaying my honest experience and thoughts.  Hope it helps and best of luck in your search. 



Thanks Soix and this is very helpful. I came out of the Chameleon audition liking the mids and highs but wondering what I would do about lack of bass definition and punch - it just wasn't there. So they're probably good for classical but not rock or even jazz.  Thanks for the advice!  
Depends on what type of classical music,I listen to a lot of piano recordings and even those must have well defined deep bass to be convincing.

Kenny.
My Dad has the original Concerto, Concertino, Wall, and Solo and they are great speakers.   I was over there the other night and was still impressed how good they sound.   I would try to find a nice used pair, unfortunately some think these are worth a lot more than I'd be willing to pay so just be patient if you do go used, there are still some good deals on these.