Adding a SS amp as a 2nd amp for my tube rig has been a plus


I'm really glad to have purchased a solid state amp, used, to go with my tube gear. Just the perfect solution to when I grab a moment or two to listen — that hour between work and dinner, for example. There's not enough time to warm up the the tube amps, but I turn on the tube preamp, turn on the solid state amp, and I'm in business.

I spent about 5:1 for the tube stuff (including the better tubes) relative to the SS amp, but I think spending that small extra portion on a slightly better tube rig wouldn't have gotten me as much.

Sonically, the tube stuff is superior — BUT I get a slightly different angle with the ss gear. For example, some rock sounds better with the solid state. Also nice to have a solid state when I swap different speakers in to try out.

Convenience-wise, I get more listening in to have that ss as a second amp. Most of the time, I just listen to tube, but when I can't make listening an "event", I still find myself listening.

Yes -- some additional costs (extra interconnect, extra speaker cables) but I am not the sort who breaks the bank on those items, so pretty negligible added cost.

For what it's worth. Anyone else done this?
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@tonnesen I'd like to try that Pass amp. Did you do a deHavilland/Pass combo? Any reactions?

@oldhyvy You are way out of my league! Mad skills! I suppose you play the Who's Live at Leeds at the original volume?
Understand where you are coming from  ...

I do a variance on your method, I have 2 systems setup together, which share the same sources, my main is a Supratek DHT and the vintage valves I use are rather expensive so its used for long listening times a few times a week as I want to preserve where I am at after a fair bit of valve rolling by its previous owner and myself.  Due to the demanding speakers, Dynaudio C2 Plats, I found that they don't go that well with my original MC75 valve power amps so after some experiments went with an used Accuphase  A70 to drive them .. it takes a good 30 mins or thereabouts for the system to settle in and improve, interesting the amps show a couple of watts increase once its settled in ?  Not sure whether its the pre, pwr or both ?

So for quick listens I have a used McIntosh C22 and MC75's which I brought originally to try drive the more demanding dynaudio speakers, I since brought a more efficient set of speakers and this combo gets going very quickly and importantly the valves are all modern and a lot less expensive.  A nice listen as well but it doesn't match the openness and richness of my other system.  I did change out the pre valves to Genalex Gold Lion 12AT7's as the stock ones weren't doing anything for me .. 
@oldhvymec 

NIH says 110 db sound exposure for 1 minutes starts to create hearing loss

glad you can still read  :)
LOL Just because it does 110, doesn't mean your gonna listen at 110.
Mercy.  Heck a I have a CAR that will hit 125, a single 10". 

I've taken VERY good care of my ears. I suggest everyone do that.

I use 2-4 12Ks when I want to PUSH the issue at home..

You know I've been around car/PU/simi audio stuff, for 50 plus years, the last 25 or so the automotive stuff can really put it out.

I was at a competition, where Gapa Bass hit 145, BEFORE he flipped the sub switch. 165.  I wear OVER the top muffs and plugs at competition..  I NEVER stick my ears in a chamber.. NEVER..
Been 5 years since I went to one.

I see a bunch of kids, hanging around, I MOVE ON. LOL

I saw a simi tip up, catch on fire, in Brazil (?). 140K gen set...YUP
HI CURRENT class Ds 100+ amps right to the ground. I think they saved the tractor.  Show Off.. :-)

Regards

@rosco88 Very nice gear you have. I  bought some nice Valvo AT7's from the 1960s for my pre and some Genelex GL 77's for my tube amp; nicer, mellower now, having replaced  the stock JJ's which were in both units (AT7's and KT88s) at purchase.

Given how much the nice tubes in my pre-amp can affect the sound, overall, I wonder how much someone could get away with if they spent really good money on the pre and its tubes and then spent a lot less on a SS amp. How would that compare to a medium good pre/tubes/tube-amp? Hmmm.