Looking for perspectives

Interested in upgrading from an integrated to separates.  The components that will remain in place:

- Focal Electra 1028be’s
- Bricasti M1SE DAC (can and will connect directly to amp)

Trying to decide between a pair of Simaudio 400m monoblocks and an Audio Research VT80SE.  Here are some additional data points:

- I’m not interested in other brands or models.  - I can’t demo before purchase.
- There’s essentially no difference in cost to me.
- I have never owned a tube product, nor have I ever heard one.
- I am an existing Simaudio user.

Ultimately, I’m looking for some thoughts as it relates to solid state vs. tube, especially if you made this switch yourself.  If you’re an ARC product user, I’d also appreciate your experience with the brand.

Thanks !
Going from integrated to separates is hardly an upgrade, except in the sense it looks like you have a lot more equipment. So people looking at your system not knowing anything about audio, it looks really cool. When in reality its very hard (and really, really expensive) to equal integrated performance in separates. Especially tube integrateds. Would almost have to say it cannot be done, but will settle for really hard just in case.
I know you didn't mention this but since you own the Bricasti M1 why not get one of Bricasti's amps? They match perfectly with your M1. Just a thought.
Unfortunately, the Bricasti amps are almost twice my budget for this purchase. 
Power amp tubes go bad sooner or later, and retubing  can be costly. And sometimes they go kablooey (technical term) and take out other components with them, which is even more costly. Some stuff to think about.
Maybe try something like a class A solid state amp. Pass Labs makes good stuff, and their customer service is fantastic.

Curious since you said you can or will use your Bricasti M1 direct into amp does this mean you only do digital? Yes the Bricasti M28 monos are VERY expensive but have you ever heard their stereo amps? 
Correct...I only do digital via Roon.  The stereo amps are (unfortunately) still above the budget.
I went from a SS CJ 2500A to a Bob Latino Tubed ST-70 amp. I sold the CJ within the month. This is not a put down of the CJ. I love their sound, but the tube amp has a quality which I think is better