Convo on SS mixed with VAC and in what order?


Hello audio gurus, I would like your thoughts on going VAC with SS pre. I've seen mentions of using a VAC amplifier with SS pre and phono pre. I'm asking because i'm in upgrade mode. After moving from mm to mc on a VPI Prime I've given away a Cary SLP98P and VTL ST150 to a friend forcing me to replace (yay!). I have Pass Labs Pre and Phono and in search of a new amp and speakers.

I will use Meadowlark Osprey speakers for a year but don't want to match these speakers with an amplifier because I will be replacing them. The question I'm seeking to answer is about amplifiers. Do I only look at SS because I already SS pre's? Or can I look at VAC amplifiers to match with SS? I like the idea of a VAC amplifier.

If I go with a SS amplifier I would think a 250.8 Pass would be a good fit before I get speakers. As I type this I'm thinking to myself that speakers first may be the better idea.


gts1brick
First, to your own ears be true.
The orthodox answer:
Tube PreSS amp
Reasoning:
The tube pre adds sweetness and warmth and falvor, while the SS amplifier will drive just about anything. This is an especially good combination with exotic speakers with widely varying impedance curves.

OTOH, a lot of people love tube amps for exactly their interaction with the speakers.

So, your mileage may vary, but this is the most common starting point.

Best,
E
I’d say tube preamp and SS power amp but since you already have the Pass preamp I think the 250 would still be a good idea. It will be a lot easier to match the Pass to whatever speakers you decide to get in the future. You can get great sound from a tube power amp but speaker selection will be much more critical.

The Pass power amp will mate better with a larger variety of speakers and it half sounds like the best of tubes right out of the gate.
thanks for the quality feedback. I'll be upgrading speaker but dont know which ones and I'm without an amp right now. Thinking I'll pull the trigger on the 250.8