I had the LS17SE for 6 months, a Primaluna Dialogue preamp bested it with more organic sound. I suspect you have to go up higher in the ARC range to get better sound.
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Greetings Chris, I would stay with the ARC SP 17 for now and try some new 12AX7 Gold Lion easily available. Also call and see if Bryston Vermont service can make sure the amp is in spec and while in there change the input impedance to 100K.Our buddy just did this with improved clarity was very satisfied.
Best Johnny R