When were the best tube amps made?

And what were they?

1980's Audio Research need not apply. 


I have directly compared the Linlai 6sl7 withe the ken rad vt229 and I can say the Linlai elite do sound better, now hopefully they last just as long as the ken rad.

Yes- that's the one thing...

40 years ago a Dynaco tube amp got me into his pursuit. There are plenty I haven't heard, but the CJ ART Stereo 150 is the one that I can unconditionally recommend. 

PrimaLuna comes to mind as a company that has combined the best of modern technology with the best of vacuum tube sound quality. Their autobias has taken the mystery out of maintenance and brought tube rolling to the market for those who would otherwise not want to deal with such things. At real world pricing their products punch way above their price point. Driving tubes gently helps keep the cost of long term ownership reasonable. Lots of reasons they’ve done so well in a short time. Perhaps others will take a queue. 

I second PrimaLuna.  My EVO300 integrated tube amp is wonderful when upgraded with Golden Lion KT66 tubes