Can’t get the Nova to work with Sonus Fabers

I bought a Nova in november and it ran many hours and still a lot of albums are sounding realy bad.
Per example Pink Floyd’s Division Bell sound so shrill that I can not listen to it.

I have the Nova connected to a pair of Sonus Faber Cremona Auditors M with Naca5 cables. I have a Silent Angel N8 switch with their seperate power supply. Further I use Chord Shawline streaming ethernet cable & a Roon Nucleus with Qobuz & Tidal & Roon.

Accoustic guitar and voices are sounding great, but most of the rock albums are sounding like with a lot of trebble.
I have to use monitors (floorstanders are not possible) due to certain objects in my room (6x6 meters). The monitors are 60cm from the wall (I have tried different distances).

I am thinking of getting rid of the Sonus Fabers of there is no solution to this problem .
Anybody an idea what to do?


I don’t think that’s your equipment - I’ve always felt that way about that album since it’s release - the more recent remasters tame the sound a little, but to my ears it’s still shrill.

As a Nova owner I don’t find it as you describe (though I do know what you mean, but that sound is limited to a few albums) so I’m guessing your speakers or the Nova/speaker match aren’t to your ears liking. Are you able to listen to speakers such as those from PMC, Neat, ATC and the other forum favourites with a (or better still, your) Nova?

Hi Tallguy,
Thanks for your reply!
I have not tested other speakers on my Nova. But I think I will start soon because i am not satisfied with the sound at this moment. I am thinking of testing a pair of Harbeth 30.2 speakers to see if that would solve it.
Thanks, Hans

Are you running current firmware?

Have you tried a hard reset at all or recently, you’d need to set up again but this sometimes coreects poor sound, though sounds as though the issue has been there from the start.

Is the NACA5 terminated correctly at Nova and speaker ends - unlikely but you never know!

You may have a newer iteration, I’m not familiar with those speakers but a ‘What Hi-Fi’ review from 2008 said:

  • The Cremona Auditor Ms are smallish speakers, so the deepest bass notes are off the menu

Did you get the speakers at the same time as the Nova? If not you use them previously with other equipments with more balanced and enjoyable results? If so it may simply be that they don’t work as synergistically with the Nova as before.

Often in hi-fi I’ve found that when upgrades tighten up the sound we perceive less bass/fullness and if you prefer a fuller more sonorous sound by nature a perhaps more accurate sound doesn’t suit everyone.

Do you have a dealer who could advise some alternatives to try at home?

I’ve had these Cremona’s for a week at the end of my system last year. An exceptionally good and balanced speaker. Very musical too. Even next to my own (and much more expensive) Guarneri’s.

Unless you’re in a very big room, getting rid of them would be a mistake imo. They do need very precise positioning btw.

I had the speakers before the Nova, connected to a Naim Unitiqute. This setup did not sound so shrill as it does now.
I have the Naca5 not connected with the supplied plugs because they don’t fit in it. I am using banana plugs (simple ones that I used with my unitiqute aswel.
I did not performed a hard reset of the Nova. I will give that a try. It is on the latest firmware.

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Thanks! I have positioned the speakers in many ways now, but a did not managed to get them sounding right

Most of my speaker cable is banana plug terminated for practicality more than anything - some could do with being re-terminated, I doubt not using Naim’s connectors is the issue!

How long is your NACA5 - Naim recommend a minimum of 3.5 metres per channel, though this is more important with older equipment, it has been mentioned the new Uniti range is a little more tolerant.

The hard reset may or may not help but occasionally people have found it helps if things sound ‘off’ after a firmware update or in general.

The new Uniti series all in ones probably have a different presentation to older amps/all in ones, but I’ve never heard a Unitiqute (do you still have it?).

I feel that the room, 36 m2, is too big for these little monitors. I enjoyed a lot the Cremona auditor in medium room at dealer place, with a Jeff Rowland 250 W. They need also a lot of power to really shine.

I don’t agree FR. As said, I had them in my room for a week next to my Guarneri’s (a considerably tougher load). This room is 62 m2 and the 282/Hi/200 didn’t break a sweat driving them beautifully. I don’t know the Nova though.

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I never got on with my Nova for the very reasons above. It needs careful speaker matching so as not to accentuate some of its shortcomings - just my experience and I appreciate others have no issues.

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Beautiful sound I agree, but lacking some body and bass in such a big room.

Thank you all! I will sell my SF and I will buy a new/used pair of floor standing speakers. Not sure yet what I will choose.

I know this sounds like a weird question, but are you sure your cable are not reversed like the positive and negative,
If you are using proper naca cable there is a positive and negative side and I’ve seen were people get the speakers out of phase by crossing them. And the nova since I had one has the cable connection backwards from a lot of Naim amps. Like my 200dr.
So make sure the positive is in the red on amp and follow the cable to speaker end and make sure the red is in proper side of speakers.
If they are out of phase it kills the bass.

As you can see the right and left channels are reversed
The part of the naca that plugs into amp will have one side that has one tab that says positive and the other side has two tabs the negative side.
May or may not be the case, for you but doesn’t hurt to double check. If it is out of phase easy fix.

It sounds like a case of poor speaker room synergy to me. It sounds like you have it set up right and you have tried all the normal stuff. There’s only so much you can do. If I were you I’d try to get some other speakers in your room to see if it’s the speaker causing your dissatisfaction.

Very strange story…

The Unitiqute is a fine box but out of its depth on Cremona Auditors. You had them on the Unitiqute without problems, in the same room. The Nova should be an excellent pairing with the SFs but you experience the sound as shrill compared to the Unitiqute. That makes little sense.

It seems like something is wrong as others suggested too. Are the Cremona’s on the original stands? Are they sitting firmly on all 4 spikes without any wiggles? Are the bolts from the speakers to the stands equally and firmly (hand!)tight? Any other changes in the mains, room decoration, listening position etc?

I know the speakers well and it would be a shame to sell these gorgeous ‘baby Guarneri’s’ imo. :slight_smile:

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I had challenges with a Nova and SF Olympica, same issue as you - sounding shrill at times. I went down a different route, I kept the speakers and got a more powerful amp.

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