So, I started looking at my components again. Today I had a Sonneteer Alabaster delivered on loan from McKenzie Hifi in Northants.
I'm waiting also on:
Naim Dav V1 & Chord Hugo.
Plan to try an Orton, Sugden A21SE, SN2.
Current: 2Qute (+ TP 12/2) + Nait XS2 + Proac 118.
Chord Shawline RCA (Despite what people say about cables last, this has made my system much, much better. To the point I almost cancelled the trialling other things. Recently tried TQ Black cables and they made my system sound irritiable like a kid on crack (I know many rate them but it didn't help here).
I've also moved my system round after advice from Nigel at Chord and that's helped further. By the way, Nigel is fantastic chap. A credit to the Chord Company.
Chord Silver Plus USB. Chord Odyssey 3m. Tried NAC A5. Didn't appreciate it ... (Lambast me!)
Anyway, back to the Sonneteer. (In the context of my current system).
I read the Sonneteer was sweet, warm and musical. So I thought this might suit my ear'oles.
It's already run in (demo version). And now been on 1 hour and 30 minutes. It's already feeling like a radiator on level 3. And there's no remote (long story). It's built like a tank though. Quality finishing.
Sound wise on the few tracks I've had chance to listen to so far;
It's MUCH more obvious, forward and jovial that the XS2. Saturday night versus the XS2's Thursday night feel. It's much wider than the XS2. More surrounding. I want to say it's smoother and rounder but it doesn't feel as moody or sophisticated as the XS2. Actually the things I were hoping to solve actually sound more obvious here. It darts around the room much more. Vibrancy is the word.
It's not as grippy, clean & snappy as the XS2 (but the size of it sort of masks that). I find it less together. Just doesn't seem to have the same tightness and cohesion. But it's not lacking liveliness. If you like that sort of thing.
I'm finding it's drawing my attention more but not in the same way as the XS2. The XS2 draws me into a transfixed state of stare more when I am following the basslines and the mood. XS2 is darker/drier. The Alabaster is unmissable but it doesn't have the mystery and darkness of the XS2.
Voices are softer and more present like they are floating on clouds but feel less knitted into the mix - stand out more. They feel also, dare I say a bit more 'ssss'.
All of the strings and orchestral stuff in the background are more obvious and present.
So far, it's a quite different sound to my ears which is bigger and more lively but I'm not enjoying the music near as much as my XS2 at the moment (Maybe need to adjust a little). It's very very open. Things feel a tiny little bit splishy and sploshy by comparison (Perhaps perceptive due to what i am used to). A spot less solid. We'll see how it settles. I've been known to go full circle! Ha
Will report back as it progress.
The remote (or lack of) is niggling slightly.
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