Tube preamp topologies and music

I am searching for a tube power amplifier. I know very little (nothing) about what the pros and cons of tube topologies as they relate to certain types of music.

as an example, let’s take hard rock/heavy metal. It seems to be the consensus that say 300b single ended amps would be the wrong choice even if you had 100+db efficient speakers. Why is this?

Also, tube compliment. 211? EL84? 300B? I understand that they have power output differences, but what else?


I welcome everyone’s input.


@gochurchgo I hope I do not upset anyone, as this is very personal for each of us. Every amp has characteristics that could be positive, and/or negative. Speakers, room size/acoustics, listening distance between listener and speakers, music selection and taste, optimum and enjoyable volume levels and of course, other characteristics the individual is wanting. For cheap, I would buy a used Nuforce STA200. At a higher price, maybe a used Pass XA25. Both fantastic, and with horns. There are many more to choose from. I would not go tubes at this point with technology (power amp specifically). BTW, if you appreciate tautness, control, speed, fast transients, rhythmic momentum and less "color", particularly with the lower octaves, these are not the forte of tubes. I am not knocking tubes, as I understand why the love. I left tubes (again power amplifiers specifically) a very long time ago, and the virtues of music and sound reproduction I look for and appreciate, are with great solid state. Please pardon me. My best, MrD.

@gochurchgo  , in a discussion about the definition of the term "musical" I once made the comment that a SET amp would be the wrong amp for a head banger.  At least two (possibly more) members informed me that I was dead wring, and also that 4 wpc of SET power with the right speakers could bring the house down.

All valid points above.Eventually it comes down to the characteristics you value and finding and matching equipment to get you there. Speakers and room size are key. Unfortunately or fortunately this requires research and trial with your ears. If you value slam and dynamics, single ended tube amps are at a detriment compared to solid state amps. If you want set and forget, go with solid state. If you like modifying, rolling tubes, then... If you value soundstage depth, solid state is at a disadvantage. It comes down to the end result you want to hear and how you want to get there.



I would have thought your comment on a SET amp being a poor choice for for a head banger about as safe and uncontroversial as possible… hmm, I guess everything can be challenged. 

In all fairness, I thought jasonbourne71's comments were pretty on point overall, and I should have made that clear in my own comment above.