Sonus Faber - Stradivari - Amp and Pre

I currently have SF Cremona driven by a Classe CP-65 pre and a Levinson 432 amp. I am looking at the possibility of a pair of Stradivari. Any thoughts on how the Classe and Levinson would match with the Strads? I realize that this class of speaker normally would call for a higher end electronics, but the Strads are enough of a stretch. Upgrading electronics is probably not in the cards. Thoughts?
Think you are putting the cart before the horse.
If upgrading the amp & pre is not in the cards - What will you do if the mix is wrong?
Your amp certainly has enough power, but I would suggest a tubed pre for warmth.
On the other hand - If you're happy with the sound of the amp/pre combo with the Cremora's - It might just work.
The Strad's are a very special speaker & the better you feed it - The better it will sound.
I like my Classe and Levinson with the Cremona very much. I am willing to change, but probably not to double the price, at least not at this time. I realize that is not optimal, but sometimes you need to move in steps. The Levinson certainly has the power, the question is whether it has the finesse and speed for the Strads. I am sure it would be a compromise, but if I can get 90% of the Strads capability, it may be OK for now.I will stay with solid state, even even though a tubed pre would be very nice. When I have heard the Strads it has been with Nagra gear. Unfortunately, there are not Strad dealers in New England (Boston). When you went to SS, what amp/pre combos did you try?
I would not consider the levinson 400 series fast amps. In fact, it is one of the reasons I did not go ahead and purchase a pair of 436s. On the other hand, the 532 (not the H series) is a much faster amp.


As an owner of STrads who has pretty much acquired everything i own s/hand or trade-in, demo-unit, etc. here is my own philosophy on upgrading and on the Strads in particular:

1. The nice thing about a Strad is that it would be difficult (particularly given your quality electronics) to make it sound less than amazing by mere mortal standards. That is some serious speaker you are talking about, and there is a reason why many considered the Strad as belonging in the world's pantheon of great speakers.

i have not heard your electronics with the Strad...but can say i have heard the Strads with Krell, ARC, Gryphon, CJ, and a few other names...and in all cases, i heard good sound. some better than others of course, but in no case did i feel the sound was strident, or unappealing, or anything less than great "Sonus Faber family" sound.

2. Plus, few if any of us are going to upgrade "one more piece of equipment"...and be finished forever. So someday, if you choose to upgrade your electronics, you will now have a world class speaker that, as Paladin says, will have the ability to show off your new electronics.

3. It is yours ears and your wallet, so i am only sharing my own personal philosophy. But in general, if you love the STrad (and many people do, including me), i would be surprised if you regretted buying it.

Relative to the Cremonas which i know well and respect, the Strad will have a quality of refinement in your mid and enormous bass.

4. As for future electronics/upgrades/perfecting the system integration with your Strads...again, there is no perfection...but while you are waiting for future potential will be enjoying one of the world's truly great speakers.

Good luck and please keep us posted!!