Matching an Amplifier to my Proac Response 2.5s + CJ PV5


I'm needing help/suggestions for finding a good amp to pair with two components: a Conrad PV5 tube preamp and my Proac Response 2.5s (rated at 86dB)

I've tried two amps: Bryston 3bst, which was way too bright for my taste, as well as an Assemblage ST40 (basic el34 40/watt), which is pretty good, but maybe lacking a little magic and detail.

Budget is under $2k...some amps that interest me in that budget are Pass Aleph 3 or 5, Music Reference RM9, CJ MV52 or Premier...

I listen mostly at low to medium volumes, and bass "slam" and extension is not a necessity. 

Big thanks!


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I owned the Response 2.5 in the past and I think they need a bit of power to perform due to the low sensitivity. I had them paired with Quicksilver V-4 amplifiers which would be a bit over your budget ($2.5k)
Ah, thanks...maybe I should push my budget up to < $2.5k. 

I'll check those out...
The RM-9 might work nicely. The speaker is very tube-friendly FWIW. Back when it was in production we had lots of customers using them with our M-60s.
For many years I ran my 2.5s with a 12W Cary SE Class A tube amp, and was very, very happy with the result.  This was based on a recommendation a long time ago from Arnie, the founder of A-gon, when he still ran a B&M store, Accutronics, in Ann Arbor (so many As...).  These days I'd be inclined to look at whatever PrimaLuna amp you can reach with your budget.
Thanks for the replies everybody...

I guess I'm torn with how little wattage I can get away with for the 2.5s...



Unless you are in a really small room 50-60 watts is a good power level.
If you listen at low volumes you should be able to use an RM9. I owned the original back in the day and they’re lovely, lovely sounding amps. Or you cold go all CJ with something like this:
https://www.audiogon.com/listings/tube-conrad-johnson-premier-four-100w-ch-tube-power-amplifier-2016...