Preamp for Rogue Stereo 100 amplifier


Hi, I am considering getting a Rogue Stereo 100 power amp to drive my Tannoy Prestige speakers. I have heard the amp and really liked the way it "tried" to disappear. For a tube amp, it did not show any signs of sluggishness or tubey processing of sound. But tonally it had a more humane character than solid states so it was impressive overall. However the system I heard it was a very different one than what I have at home. The speaker brand was Audes. It uses smaller 5" drivers for mids and ribbon tweeters (unlike Tannoys). The rest of the chain was also kind of unknown but pretty neutral from what I could gather. The preamp was an EMT JPA66 Mk2. Very high end stuff, which I wont be buying.

So what kind of preamps would suit the tonality of Rogue ST-100 ? Neutral, a bit warm or..? Rogue's own preamp is an option but they are not as well reputed as the power amps so I am considering other options too. Budget, $3-4k new/used
pani
I have the ST100 paired with the RP7 (a bit out of your budget), but not surprising they are an excellent match.  The RP7 with its stock JJ 12AU7 tubes is "neutral" as least as far as tube setups go, but easily bests my previous Halo Int for treble extension and mid range smoothness.  I've recently replaced the JJs with Radiotechnique 12AU7s and couldn't be happier, as they are a big improvement over the JJs for both bass and treble extension, with a dose of warmth.  Yes, it now sounds more tubey.  : )   Perhaps a used RP5, with future tube rolling is an option for you?  The only other preamp of sorts I tried with the ST100 was my ADI-2 DAC driving the ST100 directly, and it sounded surprisingly good, though not at the level of the RP7.  

Along those lines, I have Amperex Bugle Boy type 12AX7 coming in soon, and will try those out in the ST100.  It's so much fun...    
A balanced preamp will do that nicely. Our MP-3 preamp can do that quite well. A bit out of your price range, but you can probably find a used one in budget.
Thanks everyone. The RP7 seems very promising, though expensive. But now my interest has also piqued for Cronus Magnum III with their SE upgrades (resistor and caps upgrade). If it is close to the sound of seperate ST-100 and RP7 then it would be a great deal. I will not have to worry about interconnects, power cords and their effects etc. 

Whats the feeling on this from existing Rogue users ?
I run Tannoy Canterbury GR with Rogue Apollo Darks, which are similar to your ST100, just bigger. It’s a good combination. I like how the amps give gobs of power for rock & metal, with a neutral tone.

For preamps I’ve tried a number, and I’m still a little confused lol. I think a good match is a very slightly sweet, warm tube pre that’s - if anything - just a touch relaxed on top to work well with the Tannoy’s horn. You also want an extremely low noise floor since the Tannoys are very sensitive.

I’m pretty happy running an ARC Ref 6 right now, which does everything well with just a *hint* of sweetness and a top end that’s not too aggressive. The VAC Renaissance V had the perfect warm, beautiful tone, but couldn’t rock as well as the other preamps - a deal breaker for me. The Rogue Hera II was too noisy. The RP-9 is great but I’d like it to be just a touch more relaxed on top, and it’s still not as quiet as the Ref 6 (none of the Rogue pres are that quiet). Still evaluating that one, though! An RP-5 with Mullard tubes (even the Russian reissues are good) might be a good option. A used RP-7 should eventually turn up in your price range, which should be better. I wouldn’t step down to the RP-1 with your level of gear. IIRC the Rogue Athena had a lower noise floor (they screwed the noise floor in the Hera I to II upgrade, which I now regret) and may be a good candidate if it pops up used. Also sometimes the old VAC preamps pop up for a good deal; not all of them share that circuit of the Ren V (e.g. the Renaissance III has less of the beautiful tone but could certainly rock).

And the Cronus III may be great, but I think the ST100 will be a better amp for your Tannoys. A long time ago I was running an Atlas (Cronus without the pre section) on Kensington SE when I got to try my friend’s Stereo 90 (both non-Magnum). It was a very notable upgrade in sound!