Which amp to use with Linear Tube Audio pre?

I really love my LTA Microzotl 2. Its bit clunky in a NAD 3020 sort of way but the sound always pleases.

I'd like to pair it with an amplifier that doesn't step on what it does, have used it with a Prima Luna Premium amp section and Musical concepts modded Hafler, both subtracted from what I can hear using it as a 1w amplifier direct. Am tempted to go for a Pass XA25 in my 12x12 listening room as that has good reviews driving Magnepan whereas the LTA amp sections do not.

Wondering if LTA pre owners have other recommendations?


@davide256 ,


Interested in where you ended up.

I have mz2 in near field with and high efficient Decware speakers - love the 3d space it creates.  I also have Maggie .7s in my living room with a great processor/preamp - but was wondering if there was some way to bring some of that tube magic to the Maggies without muddying things up.  Thinking of getting an LTA power amp for the Maggies.

They recommend the ZOTL40, but there's some good prices on the ultralinears that have less power.

My questions:
  - you said the MZ2 could drive your Maggies 90% of the time with 1 watt?  Your feeling if a 20 watt LTA amp would be enough to over the rest?
  - You also said you like the sound of the Schiit Sys + Orchard over the MZ2 as a pre.  Do you think the MZ2 is muddying things, or it's just not a good match with the Orchard?

Any thoughts / experience is greatly appreciated.

Aegir was interesting, very warm and full sound. But sounded syrupy and compressed compare to using the MZ2 as amp,  definitely stepped on details the MZ2 was providing


it took a while, but I get what you were saying here now. I’ve been doing a lot more listening with the MZ3 as an integrated. I still use the Aegir sometimes, but feed it with a SS hpa for background music or TV or just days I’m not up for burning tubes. The last time I put the Aegir between the MZ3 and my speakers was after listening a while to the MZ3 by itself. And it hit me. Maybe I wasn’t listening to the same things before and was focused on other differences. I can’t unhear it now. Probably not going to use that combo anymore. 

@b2colchagoff  I ended up buying a solid stateTopping Pre90, took me several months to reach a conclusion which I liked better between the MZ2 and the Pre90. The MZ2 has that tube ease in playing music, is neutral and faster on transients than the CJ PV10a, Prima Luna Integrated Premium pre tube sections I have had. But in the end it lost out to the Pre90 for background detail, dynamics and solid, clean low bass. It's possible that If I had the better MZ3 or LTA's bespoke preamp that the outcome may have differed

On the wattage end, using the Orchard Audio GAN monoblocks is a no contest compared to what I've owned in the past used with Maganepan 1.7 (Bryston B60, Prima Luna Premium, Musical Concepts modded Hafler DH200). It controls the speaker, and has no need to play loudly to get clarity. I do think that there are better class D options like Boxem and Apollon which are more sophisticated in their input section, may eventually switch. The 1 watt from the MZ2 as amp is musical but with Maggies you are giving up base and the reviews I've read for LTA amp sections usually highlight that as a criticism for driving Magnepans.


I do think that the MZ2 cries out to be used as an integrated amp with high effciency speakers like Zu, Omega Alnico,  where 1 watt can be powerful