Sopra No 2's or other alternatives?


Have listened several times to Sopra 2's and while I do like them at times they come across a bit bright. Also bass was not as controlled as expected.  Don't know what was causing this but can this community give me other alternatives? They will be mated with SS gear for the time.

rsf507

The Revel 328be is of similar quality in sound, has a similar sound but is less bright in the treble and has more bass out put (cheaper too). They are on sale now for $13k-ish if you look around. They don’t look as nice imo though. 

I was hell bent on Sopra 2’s for a couple of years. Went to do my final listen....and bought Magico. They were demonstrably better to me and come to think of it the bass is where my buddy and I saw the biggest difference. Used A3’s are same or less money and pop up on occasion. Give them a shot, especially if the Focal is coming across as bright to you.

What type of music? Surrounding gear?

Acoustic Zen Crescendo Mark ll.  I have owned both Sopra 2 and the Zens.  Would only buy either speaker used.  

I own a pair of Acoustic Zen Crescendo Mark ll. I may sell depending on how my divorce goes. Joe

Oh lord, a bit bright? I had them for 3.5 years, they shredded my ears daily. They threw knives at me, but they sharpened them first with their vomit inducing sibilants. Have I ever heard all the “SSSSSSS” and “SSSHHHHH” in my life? No! I heard them for my next two lives!

 

Tried everything. Electrical improvements, borrowed everything that I could borrow, switched cables. Nothing helped.

 

I had no choice and sold them. That was the only good part about them.

For something with a similarly detailed sound characteristic, but not as bright or harsh you might consider the paradigm persona five f. I find that these offer  the detail and resolution of the.Focal but not overly bright 

If you are interested in a different sound all together, something more musical, you might consider the Sonus Faber Olympica nova V

good luck 

I had a Pass 250.8/Pass XP10 pre and PS Audio DS Jr a couple years back running Focal 1028BE with a REL s/510 and the set up was great; musical, dynamic etc. I (in my case) couldn't leave well enough alone and upgraded to Sopra 2 after reading reviews and assumed "more was better". It was not. I struggled to like the Sopra 2 for over a year or more and never warmed up to them. They were def on the bright side, frequently sounded etched and the bass though present and deep at times sounded dry and diss connected from the rest of the speaker. where the 1028's were not fussy and always sounded great the Sopra's never locked in and always left me frustrated and uninvolved. I sold them and didn't miss them. I got Harbeth HLS5 Super Plus to replace them and loved them for a long time. 

I have Sopra 2s and absolutely love them. Bass is tight and lighting fast, mids are natural and highs sparkle.

Needless to say, opinions are just that.

50% of what you are hearing is reflective sound - if the room is not treated your are making the sound worse. If the speakers are placed incorrectly, room modes will destroy any detail in the bottom end. 

It's like drinking a great wine out of a dixie cup - will taste bad every time. Put it in an appropriate glass, and you get everything the wine maker was intending.

If you are willing to spend that amount of $ for Spora 2, give the Legacy Audio Focus XD or SE (With XD upgraded midrange drivers a listen.

+1 on addressing your room first if needed. Give Rockport Atria ii speakers an audition. They are world class speakers. Good luck ! 

Probably not easy to find, but the new Borresen X3 is worth a listen. It's very clean sounding, but it is not bright and it is very dynamic.

2 channel listening? Or mixed use Home Theater? No subs? Sopra 3’s have the bass that one person mentioned missing with Sopra 2’s … 

I enjoy my Sopra 2's, lusted after them for years. I've considered selling as they just don't always suit me. Those that claimed they're bright should really treat their room and set the speakers up properly. They definitely started out bright, but after a few hundred hours so settle down and become more linear. Bass can be boomy so treat your corners and all is fine. I had Electra 1028be's as well and loved those speakers. Never should have sold them. Oh and the Sopra 2's are vastly overpriced now. They used to sell for $15k a few years ago and you could get a deal on them. Now they're +$20k and definitely have way less value. I'm looking elsewhere and checking into either the new YG series and possibly even testing out some of the Spendor A7's soon. 

Beryllium tweeters are harsh. I learned that the hard way. Ribbon tweeters can be much kinder (or AMT or soft dome). There are many factors at work. Nuanced discussion here.

i second the Borresen X3 or X5... amazing speaker and great value for the money

I own and enjoy my Sopra No2s. The top end is definitely lively and the tone will be unkind in an untreated room. I treated the ceiling and the sound came together very nicely. That point of reflection was the primary source of the overabundant top end.

 

I auditioned different amplification and along the way found that the Sopras play best with an amp that has a high damping factor.  Forget tubes.  Hegel amps have a very high damping factor and that's what I decided on.  The base I'm getting is very pleasing and well controlled.  (fair harbor statement, I have bass traps in both front wall corners)

 

If I was going to look at an alternate speaker I would consider the Wilson Sasha DAWs. Wilson just rolled out an updated version of the DAWs. The secondary market is flush with used DAWs and they are similar in price to new Sopra No2s. Good hunting and cheers.

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Save your ears; too much work to 'tame' the Focals; always seems to be as I've considered them bright as well, in general (not all).  Metal dome tweeters just are not as friendly to me; implementation can help (B&W 800s hurt too).

Good luck. Listen and consider; audition as much as you can.

Well, I used my Focal Sopra 2's with tube amps (Carver 350) and did not think the Sopra's to be bright at all.

You might want to consider not toeing them in too much if the tweeter is too much for you.

ozzy

 

I have owned Sopra 2's for 3 years and have never found them to be bright at all, they sound natural to me, especially with voices.  I may be able to chalk that up to old age though, lol.  I am driving them with all PS Audio gear except for the streamer which is an Auralic at the moment, I have an Aurender N20 ordered which I hope to have in about a week.

My Borresen X-3’s for 11K are Spectacular! Once I heard them at a Show ,  I was hooked on that Danish sound.

Just wanted to say thanks for all the suggestions. I'll be going in a week to listen again to JA Perspectives2. I've heard them many months ago and enjoyed them I should have bought some demos that were on several sites.

I have been hell bent on a pair of sopra 3s, But after listening to the  Sonus Faber Sarafinos and all of the SF line on "sound Sommelier" YT I think they are a better speaker than the focal.. and I think that's where I will put my money when I pull the trigger 

I’d be interested in your perspective on the, er, Perspectives.  Sorry.

Go with the astonishingly excellent, and wonderfully non-fatiguing Revel Salon 2 speakers.  They may end up being your last pair of speakers.  They're just that good!!!

Another +1 for room treatment. I had to move my Sopra 2s and system to a smaller room a few years ago and I first noticed the lack of bass but I struggled with soundstage and overall balance as well. It was very frustrating but once I introduced some homemade room treatment everything started to fall in place. I originally used a PremaLuna Dialogue integrated with very good results but it did lack some oomf when turning up the volume. I'm now using a Roger's KWM-88 (yes, another tube amp) and it's really amazing to my ears and audio friend (of course your MMV).

I have had times when the treble is too hot but I've found that for me there is something else going on up stream. Cartridge isn't adjusted properly, breaking in a new set of tubes, etc. I also just installed a set of Gaia's to the Sopra 2s and that further improved everything top to bottom to my ears (but I don't think they would do anything for hot treble).

There are a lot of great speakers out there, many mentioned about. Regardless of what you choose, definitely consider room treatment and experiment with speaker placement. It does take some time and effort but you'll get the most out of your investment. 

Good luck!! 

 

 

@demich Experimenting with speaker positioning is also key, at least with my Kanta 3s (also demoed Sopra 3s side by side before picking Kantas). I'm continually amazed how such small movements in positioning can yield such big results.

I really enjoy Focals mids and top end with above average recordings, but IDK if there's a less forgiving brand of bright recordings than anything made by focal, Triangle, Cabasse? Man those French really like detail. When you're shopping for speakers that cost as much as a sportbike or nice car get home demos with the components you plan on using. I could rattle off several other similar priced speakers with comparable quality, but putting a system together is personal.