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RE: Tube vs. Solid State for Planars

Man, thats a lot of questions you have! GL sums it up pretty well, People with large rooms tend to sit further away from the speakers as opposed to small rooms where you are forced into a near field set-up. To fill large rooms where the listener is seated further away requires more energy from the speakers, necessitating the use of high output amps. A near field set-up allows you to put your money in quality over quantity. It's like listening through headphones as opposed to sitting 12 feet away from speakers, headphones can sound great with a smallish pure class A amp, but trying to reproduce those sonic qualities in a large room with speakers is a different story.
People often combine tube pre's with SS amp's as a compromise, tubes have a sonic character that people find attractive and SS often offer more power and bottom end control. There are brands that offer both but they don't come cheap.

"it is known fact higher output power tends to provide improved sound quality for the planars". Not exactly, higher output will play louder and probably have more control(bass), but 30w of pure class A in a near field at low levels will have better "sound quality" than 200w of a lower class.

"is there something different with tube amps vs solid state that lower
output power tube amp can still sound better than higher power solid state amp?". Yes! Long story, but I already gave the short version above.

"What do you look for, terms like 'high current' amp. High Damping factor". Don't look, go and listen! people get hung up on specs + figures, they're just rough guidelines, Its your ears that have to decide.

"From output power, the solid state amp would
sound better at lower volume vs. the tube amp?" Nope, People sitting near field and listening at low levels get away with a tube amp and prefer it over SS.

"Would you pick
amp best on brand name or output power with price being about the same?". Neither, you pick the amp you're ears prefer.

" in what situation would you choose a lower power tube amp over a higher power solid state amp?" If I couldn't live without the sonic virtues of tubes and couldn't afford the few SS or tube amps that combine these sonic virtues with high power output.


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  • RE: Tube vs. Solid State for Planars - FX35 18:33:57 06/27/20 (0)


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