All about the new Sonus faber Venere range of loudspeakers.
'A thing of beauty is a joy forever; its loveliness increases - it will never pass into nothingness' John Keats.
The first time you hear a pair of Sonus faber speakers will be the start of a long term relationship. For over a decade we've enjoyed the way every model simply makes music, with the enduring style and quality of finish that this Italian company is legendary for. Anyone who owns Sonus faber never needs to again consider changing speakers - they do so much and are so responsive to improvements made in the system that they really do last a lifetime.
A new Sonus faber model is always and event in itself - change is only made to substantially further the Sonus faber ideals. While the flagship models might only be aspirational for many of us, the fact that design elements from these speakers are now directly applied to their entry level models allows you to benefit from the history and expertise that is uniquely Sonus faber.
'Venere' is Italian for Venus - , the Roman goddess of beauty. And the new Venere series of speakers from Sonus faber are also aptly things of beauty - both in the aesthetic and musical realms. But far from being an unattainable ideal, the new Venere models are easily the best value for money products that have ever been produced by Sonus faber - if you count listening to music as one of life's more important pleasures, you'll find they outperform any comparably priced speakers. Which is certainly saying something in what has become a highly competitive market.
From a surprisingly affordable NZ$2500 the pair for the Venere 1.5 - a classic compact two way design suitable for either stand or shelf mount - through to a pair rather fabulous floor-standers, the Venere range offers you something really special.
Our own perspective on Sonus faber is completely and unashamedly biased. A pair of Cremona Auditor M reside in our own living room and we have never for a second, regretted this choice - compact, elegant and sculptural they make everything we play sound fantastic. Yet if we were choosing a speaker today, the new Venere could well be the choice - for a fraction of the cost of the Cremona,they deliver all the Sonus faber qualities: a fluid mid-range, room filling sound stage and seamless coherence. In short they make music.
With the new generation of digital audio some of the traditional perspectives of hifi are changed - you can now enjoy remarkably high levels of sound quality and convenience without necessarily spending very much at all - the NuForce and new Cambridge amplifiers being a case in point as they are effectively both source and amplifier. The NuPrime amplifier range should also be high on your list of must-hears.
So in the context of a system, you can now consider speakers that might otherwise have been out of the frame. And really - who wouldn't want to own a pair of Sonus fabers? The new Venere is designed with these modern options very much in mind - they are easy to drive so you don't need big expensive power. That said, the capabilities of these speakers are such that the better the source and amplification, the better they will sound.
While the purist might consider that nothing will beat the sound of Sonus Faber with an all analogue front end, the reality is that music comes in many flavours and formats and it's immediately obvious that the new Venere models work brilliantly across a broad range of styles and both digital and analogue formats are treated to the Sonus faber magic.
When considering the smaller models, it is possible you may have expectations of a compromised sound relative to floor standing speakers as even at the entry level, there are comparably priced speakers that are bigger. But if you are prepared to listen you'll find that the Sonus faber Venere 1.5 delivers remarkable depth - they are a triumph of quality over quantity. Of course if you like what the 1.5s do and are prepared to go further, you'll just love what the Venere floor standing models can do.
Given our obvious fondness for Sonus faber there is no way we could ever be considered dispassionate critics, so we won't launch into review of sorts but will point you to Neil Graders comprehensive write up in this months issue of The Absolute Sound.
Now, if we have maintained your interest this far, the next step is to either visit and hear the Veneres in action or talk to us and find out if they are in fact right for you, and if so, which model is best suited and how to go about extracting the best from them, especially when you are looking at a whole system.
From our own experience, owning Sonus fabers has proved to be hugely enjoyable and in keeping with our left leaning ideals we think that far more people should be able to share in this - we don't subscribe to exclusivity driven by over-pricing: Sonus faber are not relying on their reputation alone to make these speakers sell - they have poured every bit of design and material goodness they can into each pair so that you become the recipient of unbeatable value for money. And in a beautiful piece of circularity, this will ensure that the Sonus faber brand remains synonymous with quality and beauty. What more could you want for your own home?
Sonus faber Venere range
Venere 1.5 bookshelf or stand mount – gloss black or white, NZ$ 2,500; walnut, NZ$ 3,200 the pair.
Venere 2.0 standmount – gloss black or white, NZ$ 3,400; walnut NZ$ 4,000
Venere 1.5/2.0 stands – NZ$ 1,040 the pair
Venere 2.5 floor standing – gloss black or white, NZ$ 5,800; walnut – NZ$ 6,750 the pair.
Venere 3.0 floorstander – gloss black or white, NZ$ 7,700; walnut NZ$ 8,700 the pair
Venere Centre – gloss black or white, NZ$ 1,460; walnut NZ$ 1,700 each
Venere Wall – gloss black or white, NZ$ 1,710; walnut NZ$ 2,000 each
Sonus faber catalogue
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