Sonus Faber Sonetto V’s Thoughts Requested

Hello. While I’ve never posted, I’ve been a very regular lurker here for the last couple of years. The wealth of knowledge here is truly remarkable and much of it is over my head. I really respect the opinion of @Soix , @ghdprentice , and @erik_squires as well as others not named. I also appreciate how they generally go about their posts and replies, while a few others can get petty and combative, which is unfortunate and unhelpful. Overall, it seems like a good bunch that genuinely loves their hobby and likes to help others, which is great. I know, nobody asked, but I thought some of you who have been here a while might find the thoughts of a first time poster, who has been reading this informative forum for a while, somewhat interesting. 

I definitely do not consider myself an audiophile, but I have always greatly appreciated good sound. I currently have an older model Arcam AVR-450, which is rated at 125 per channel in stereo mode, driving a pair of KEF Q750’s. I also have a KEF R2C center and a Revel B110 sub. I’m happy with the sound but have become a bit smitten with the Sonus Faber Sonetto V’s and I’m thinking that they will be a somewhat affordable upgrade in sound, and I find them very visually appealing, which I know shouldn’t matter, so call me shallow. I have not heard the Sonettos, but have heard the Amati’s, which of course is a large step up. I’m ridiculously rural, so finding a dealer for a demo is not much of an option. I do prefer a somewhat warmer sound as opposed to a brighter one. I’m not a bass junky believing that bass should enhance not overwhelm. Bass should be heard of course, but for me, there is more in the mids and highs than the lows that makes for good music to my ears. I generally listen to classic rock like Pink Floyd, Steely Dan, Elton John, Winwood, Heart, Doobies, Clapton, etc.

My questions to the group are: 1. Would the Sonetto’s V’s be a noticeable upgrade over my Q750’s in SQ? 2. Is my Arcam “good enough” to drive the Sonetto V’s satisfactorily, as an upgrade to the Arcam is not an option for me anytime soon? 3. Please feel free to answer any questions you think I should have asked. Like I said, I’m not an audiophile…

I thank you in advance for your posts! Hey, how about those cable threads and whatever happen to Kenjit?  😉




Great. I was also at one concert that had more bass and volume than was necessary. 1983 or 4, Peter Gabriel at the Richmond Coliseum, a large outdoor amphitheater, the Summer home of the Cleveland Symphony Orchestra. Gabriel crammed a stadium sound system into one of the most efficient outdoor venues in existence. The bass drum kicked you in the stomach so that I could feel the abdominal wall shake. I had to stuff rolled up napkin in my ears. I did not get that abused at a Nine Inch Nails concert. 

There is a visceral component to live music. You do not just hear it, you feel it. This is one aspect that makes live music exceptional and it does not take as much volume as you would think to create that effect in a home system. It takes accurate bass flat down to 18 Hz at the listening position not one meter in front of the speaker, the rating the manufacturers give you. Big venues breath. You can tell you are in a big place with your eyes closed. This happens at very low frequencies. 

Most people expect a home HiFi system to sound like a home HiFi system and as long as they can listen to music played back cleanly they are happy. I expect my system to sound like the venue the music was recorded in, (With live recordings which I prefer) with all the visceral content intact. This means that I have been unhappy for decades and are always expecting the next improvement to get me closer to that goal. You are not a true audiophile unless you are unhappy with your system or lets say, not entirely happy. It is that visceral component that is hardest to get right. Maybe imaging is harder. I guess it depends on what day you talk to me.

You have one subwoofer. When you get a chance buy another of the exact same model and put both between your speakers. You can get a two way crossover from MiniDSP or dBx for not much money. IMHO the low pass filter found in most subwoofers is a half baked way of adding a subwoofer. Cutting the bass out of your main speaker is so beneficial it is hard to over state it. You will notice right away that your woofers seem to remain stationary and the sound is less .....stressed. You will also notice some of that visceral sensation even at modest volumes.

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You are not a true audiophile unless you are unhappy with your system or lets say, not entirely happy.

@mijostyn Ha!!! Well said and funny because it’s got a lotta truth to it.  God help us.  

@jbuhl – Thank you for your input. I can’t help but wonder how the V’s might have been a better match to compare, but I believe the Focals mentioned are a bit cheaper, so hmmm.

The IIIs  & the 926s were the same price from my dealer was the reason.   That was my budget.