Priorities...


Which would you prioritise for an upgrade - mono blocks, pre amp or speakers? 
Convert?fit=crop&h=128&rotate=exif&w=128infection
Which would you prioritise for an upgrade - mono blocks, pre amp or speakers?

Depends on what I currently have.
whats your present system?
As a general answer to a general question and assuming you have all three tagged for an upgrade I would upgrade the preamp first and the amp situation after you have chosen the speakers you are going with. The preamp is I believe the week link in most systems and more than often over looked. Good luck

First, what the goals of such an upgrade? Without knowing those, the question is too broad and without sufficient information to answer meaningfully.

And what about the source(s)?
Ok I suppose I should offer a slightly more detailed explanation - I have the opportunity to upgrade my Tannoy DC10T to the DC10A for an excellent price but in order to fund this it requires the sale of my GamuT M250i mono blocks. 
Obviously this will leave me 'ampless' so I've been looking at decent used cheaper alternatives.
Although you guys may have other speaker recommendations...
Given you could afford it, would the GamuT amps be the ones you would want to keep for use with the DC10As? Otherwise, if you had to sacrifice the amps for new speakers, and potentially exchange to a less expensive/quality amp, you could be defeating the goals desired in your speaker upgrade. Also, two variables (amp and speaker change) could "cancel" out any intended "upgrade." Of course, if the amps are not being used in system then my points above don't matter.

Personally, I am a long time Vandersteen and Thiel fan.
Yes if I could afford it I would certainly keep the M250i monos...
I was initially considering used Rogue Apollo monos as a replacement...
I have already thought about what you say regarding defeating the speaker upgrade so wanted the opinion of others.

I realise the alternative is to not bother & just continue to tweak the system to completely optimise its performance.

Get all 3 be a sport.
What preamp do you have?
Pre is a Pass XP-20.
Maybe a nice tube preamp would be the solution to your problem! It seems like the most inexpensive way to help you fund the new speakers you want. You know the old saying, "Robbing Peter to Pay Paul".
Yes I imagine a good tube pre would be cool but I wouldn’t have anywhere near enough for the speakers.
I don't really know what you are up to, so it's hard to voice an opinion. But if you must have those Tannoys and have to sell your Gamut to be able to make it happen, then I would say that you will be looking at the entire preamp-amp-speakers upgrade, just not all at once. In the meantime you will need some amplification before you can afford preamp/amp to bring out the best out of the new speakers. If that's what your plans are, I might suggest selling both Gamut and Pass, get those speakers and some good integrated until your can afford separates. How about YBA Integre Passion, I saw it on sale here? It's an excellent integrated, 100 watt/ch, has XLR and RCA inputs and preamp out. Could this be an acceptable sound until better times? Or you don't expect to be able to upgrade the equipment for a long time and just want to replace the power amp with something decent?
Frankly, I have no idea how Pass works with Gamut and how Gamut works with Tannoy, maybe your speakers are fine but the signal they get is not good enough, I don't know.
My own approach is if I really like the speakers, I upgrade electronics until time comes when speakers reach their limit. In this context I upgrade speakers last. Perhaps all you need is to upgrade your Pass preamp, at least for the time being. Or cables. Or both. Again, hard to figure it out without knowing what you wish to accomplish.
Inna that's an interesting approach re: integrated...although I don't think I could tolerate the compromise even for a week! 
The fundamentals are capitalising on an opportunity which, considering the requirements in order to achieve this, may not be logical!


Who ever said people are logical? 
Well then just sell the Gamut and get some inexpensive Pass amp. Those Tannoys don't need much power, as I understand.
re: integrated...although I don't think I could tolerate the compromise even for a week!


not all integrated amps are compromises. Try a VAC 160i SE, or a Vitus Audio SS-101, you may be very surprised.

If you’re not a really, really good negotiator, temporarily trading your amps down and then back up is going to cost quite a bit, i.e. loss of value on items you’re selling, shipping costs, Audiogon fees, etc. Those amps are heavy and all that buying and selling is time consuming.

I think it would be cheaper to take advantage of low interest rates and get a loan to finance the speaker upgrade.

Maybe put them on a new credit card that offers zero interest for 6 months or something.


Never buy anything you can't afford, especially on credit. I would go further and say "just because you can afford to buy something, doesn't mean you should".

Don't buy anything now. Start saving your money until you have the excess funds needed to facilitate your upgrade and do it then. At that time you will be bargaining from a position of power, i.e. you have an existing system and you have free cash to spend on an upgrade if the right deal comes along.
I agree with everyone. There are excellent integrated amps that can be a great compromise. There can also be different approaches to funds management, they all have a right to be. The key point is keeping things under control, sometimes difficult when you use easy credit.
Normally I too don't buy any equipment unless I have funds, but I can imagine a situation when I could go into some debt to get what I just must have.
Not an easy choice for the OP, yeah.
There is absolutely nothing in the audiophile realm that one "must have".  There are only things you want and impulses that you can either control or not.

To the OP, it doesn't sound like you can really afford the loudspeaker upgrade right now.  Trading in your current well regarded amps seems to be a poor compromise, both soundwise and monetarily.  Save your money.  The better Tannoys will come around again.
I could respond to the last post with the following thought - we only live today, especially so after a certain age.
However, I do have an impression that the OP may not want those speakers badly enough to go into complicated and potentially costly maneuvering.
That's the point of any discussion to have different opinions that all have the right to be, not some nonsense presented as an opinion and demanding the acknowledgement as such.
Objectively, I believe there is no one 'right thing to do' here. Subjectively, that's what the OP will have to figure out for himself.
I mean these questions in a friendly way: Why ask for detailed system advice without listing a complete system?  And what are your long-term goals for the system? What kind of musical experience are you after?

I don't mean to single you out, by the way. Lots of people ask for system advice without giving full context.  Photos would help too, so as to determine whether advice is appropriate for a particular space.
Again, what are your sonic goals beyond what you have now, what are your sources and ancillaries? Without knowing what these are, as much as we'd like to, it is difficult to make educated/experienced recommendations.
As an owner of Tannoys, you do not need Gamut monoblocks to power them.  Yes, you need some clean power, but quality is the most important factor.  Decide if you want tube or ss.  As for me, I went tube pre and ss amp for my DC8s.  From my research, the 10As are perhaps the "brightest" of the upper end Tannoys. No, I've not heard them to confirm.  A nice tube amp with at least 50 wpc or a ss amp with 100 wpc will be just the ticket.  If it were me, I'd sell the Gamuts, buy a good Integrated amp and get into the Prestige line....Turnberrys i.e.  Good luck and let us know your thoughts so maybe we can be of further help.  Regards.....
Buy nothing until you know it will improve...bring delight to your music.   I would listen to your current system .....go to concerts, enjoy life.
Thank you all for the input.

I will mention again that there is nothing wrong with the sound of my current system; it's very enjoyable. The situation is primarily capitalising on the opportunity of a very good deal but requires a possible compromise. 
I say possible as I may be able to replace the GamuTs with a similar performing alternative. But it raises the question is the DC10A a quantum leap over the DC10T...??
This is where DC10A owners contribute with their opinions of their performance...

@carmenc - are you suggesting the M250i monos are not quality amps...?!
Not at all....just that you have lots of money tied up in all that "big iron" that is unnecessary for Tannoys.  $$$ that could be used to buy a nice quality integrated, which Tannoys do very well with.  For tubes think Manley Stingray, VAC, PrimaLuna HP,  Blue Circle ( what I use, but hybrid ).  SS think Pass, McIntosh, Accuphase, etc.. May need to buy used....that's ok.  That's a key concern, are the 10A's that much better than 10t?  Only you can answer that.

Username "sense63" has had experience with the 10A.  I believe he used a Primaluna HP to drive them.  Try to touch base with him.  That's the neat thing about Tannoys, you don't need to spend loads on an amp.  This is almost a 180 from all of my experience with Thiels.  Good luck.  Regards.....

@carmenc - the GamuTs are not unnecessary for the Tannoys; their quality is such that they reveal the full capabilities of the Tannoys.
What music do you listen to?
@infection what are your room dimensions?  It appears to me you've received some good advice from others here yet you're still spinning your wheels so to speak.  The Gamuts are unnecessary if you're trying to "steal from Peter to pay Paul" to afford the 10A.  If money is not an object then keep them!  The 10Ts do not NEED monoblock power.  Wanting that power is another issue.  Another way to go is with a tube preamp.  Many options....time for you to determine what's most important to you.

I listen to jazz, classical, fusion, vocals, Spanish guitarists, blues, international music and classic rock.  If you're playing rock and/or orchestral music in a large room, then I can understand your desire for power to control the bass on the DC10t.  Do you really like Tannoy speakers?  Have you listened to others?

Like others have advised, I wouldn't do anything or spend another cent until you've done more research, both outwardly and inwardly.  Good luck.  Regards....

carmenc
59 posts
08-03-2016 1:57pm
As an owner of Tannoys, you do not need Gamut monoblocks to power them. Yes, you need some clean power, but quality is the most important factor. Decide if you want tube or ss. As for me, I went tube pre and ss amp for my DC8s. From my research, the 10As are perhaps the "brightest" of the upper end Tannoys. No, I’ve not heard them to confirm. A nice tube amp with at least 50 wpc or a ss amp with 100 wpc will be just the ticket. If it were me, I’d sell the Gamuts, buy a good Integrated amp and get into the Prestige line....Turnberrys i.e. Good luck and let us know your thoughts so maybe we can be of further help. Regards.....
I’m sorry I don’t agree with your statement that Tannoy’s don’t need a lot of power. As an owner of the DMT10 Mk2 speaker my experience shows otherwise. Right now i have these speakers connected to a modest vintage Yamaha integrated amp that outputs 120W/ch in class-AB & the sonics are very good. No issues here. It’s worthy to note that the Yamaha integrated is not a high current amp. I connected these speakers in my reference system which has a very high current amp (’coz it has to drive my Apogee Scintillas 1-ohm version) & I can tell you that the DMT10 Mk2 behaved like a totally different speaker - it just lit up & came alive. I went back & read the manual which has the spec sheet & noted that it’s max handling power is 350W even when the speaker is 94dB efficient. The impedance plot is almost a flat 8 ohms i.e. a very easy speaker to drive.
So, I concluded that Tannoys like good quality & large quantity of power to make them sound their best. On various forums I've read this same thing.....
The Gamut M250 mono blocks are a fantastic amp - my friend has a pair driving the original Revel Ultima Salon in his setup. It’s a pleasure to hear his system each time. The M250 control that Ultima Salon speaker so well - the proverbial iron fist in a velvet glove. From an engineering stand-point what impressed me was that each mono-block has just one (1) MOSFET power output device. Yes, just one!, to create the 250W/ch output. So, Gamut did away with matching many output devices - there’s a compromise in that as you try to match power devices. If they are not from the same lot their parameters vary (that’s just par for the course) & the overall matching & balance is as good as the worst part in the lot used in the amp output stage. With a single MOSFET power output device, all that matching headache is gone.
If I were the OP I would not give up those M250 monos - they are excellent & are, what I would consider, a long-term keeper as they would drive many other hard-to-drive speakers (the Revel Ultima Salons are more difficult to drive than the DC10T).
Stringreen gave some good advice - spend your money elsewhere where you’ll get a better bang for your buck. And, start saving for that speaker upgrade. Another DC10A will come along at a good price. You don’t have to get this particular pair..... FWIW.
I only ask about your music tastes so I can understand why you make those statements. 
I listen mainly to progressive technical rock/metal & math rock so I need amps that provide very high levels of detail & speed but tonal accuracy; the GamuTs are excellent at providing these requirements. 

I've been offered a pair of ARC Ref 210 at a good price & so have thought about selling the GamuTs & Tannoys to buy them & the new PMC twenty5.24...!
@bombaywalla - I agree! I particularly like the iron fist/velvet glove metaphor! 

The M250i are also very sensitive to mains upgrades so I suspect I have yet to hear their full potential...
@bombaywalla ...we'll just agree to disagree, how's that?  The Tannoys don't need lots of power, you just want lots of power. Difference!  Our experiences obviously differ.  It's based on listening preferences, room size, etc.  Go back and read through all the advice here given to the OP to stay on track.

@infection, if you're in love with your amps and are seeking affirmation on how good they are then just keep them.  You started out by seeking advice yet give very little detail as @goheelz mentioned.  When I gave you advice based on my experience with Tannoys, which is extensive, you end up defending your amps which is missing my point.  Regards.......

@infection also, you mentioning the ARC amp and PMC speakers further suggests to me that you just want to try something different out.  That's why I asked you if you really liked the Tannoy's.  As my friend JohnnyR has told me more than once, "you're chasing your tail".  Now that I think of it, do grab the ARC amp and a pair of Vandersteen Treo CT and be done with it.  Buy lots of music and no more tail chasin.  You can just sit back and enjoy.  Regards.......
@carmenc - relax dude, we're just having a conversation. This thread wasn't seeking advice but opinions. Difference! (Couldn't resist). I think you've missed what I mentioned re: ARC Ref 210/PMC.
Another option is the Alta Audio Rheas...


@infection .....I am relaxed Dude!  I've found my speakers/system.....not chasing my tail and all over the board like you appear to be.  Advice or opinions, doesn't seem to matter as you seem to listen to neither!  Good luck, cause you're going to need it I believe.  Regards......

What...?? I'm not 'chasing my tail'. 
You need to remember what I've said - 

I will mention again that there is nothing wrong with the sound of my current system; it's very enjoyable. The situation is primarily capitalising on the opportunity of a very good deal but requires a possible compromise.
I say possible as I may be able to replace the GamuTs with a similar performing alternative. 



@infection ....why don't we call it a truce?  I simply started out giving you my advice/opinions regarding my experience with Tannoys based on my listening room and my tastes in an effort to try and help.  Before I knew it, it turned into a back and forth about your amps.  I don't recall saying a bad thing about your Gamuts yet it seemed to me that's the way you perceived it.  Hell, I've never even heard them.  Hey we both have Tannoys so we've that much in common.  Let us know what you decide.  Regards......

Ok it's all cool...I just wanted a conversation with you guys.



If it was me, I would only sell the device that I want to replace.  if I'm happy with my amps and pre-amp, and wanted to upgrade my speakers, then that and that alone would be what I would be concentrating on.

I would slowly save enough money to purchase the new speakers, taking into consideration the amount I would make selling the other speakers.

I would not start from scratch with new amps and pre-amps when I am happy with them.

concentrate on the speakers only. (my opinion).

If, after you get the new speakers (hopefully matched to your existing gear), you feel the need to upgrade the amp, then do so at your own pace.

One item at a time.  Plan for it and budget that way.

enjoy

@bombaywalla ...we’ll just agree to disagree, how’s that? The Tannoys don’t need lots of power, you just want lots of power. Difference!
carmenc you should have stopped writing after "we’ll just agree to disagree". There’s no need to tell me that I "want" lots of power when my experience has clearly shown that my Tannoys enjoy lots of power. Yes, our experiences differ & that’s OK by me. Just don’t tell me that I want more power for my Tannoys when you haven’t even heard my setup & weren’t even there to listen to the difference when more power was used to drive them. Pretty rotten of you to do that...
This brings us to another question. Assuming the same quality, is more power always better if the speakers can handle it and won't blow up ?
@bombaywalla same can be said for you.  You jumped into this conversation not knowing anything about my setup as well.  You seem to want to banter with me more than help the OP!  
@bombaywalla same can be said for you. You jumped into this conversation not knowing anything about my setup as well. You seem to want to banter with me more than help the OP!
I want to totally avoid bantering with you. I jumped into this thread to help the OP - read my original post. Besides my disagreement with you re. more power, my orig post was addressed to the OP in order to help him.
Of course your Tannoys are going to sound better in a larger room with more power.  What's the point?  Most of this stuff is all relative.  My Tannoys are in a smaller room with less power and sound great.  I think all any of us were trying to do here was to try and help infection based on his given information.  In fact, some of us were trying to get more information out of him to be of further help.

He and I've dropped the jousting match, why can't you?  I got to be honest here.  Some on this forum like to give advice and opinions, but are not as good at receiving them.  One of the unwritten rules of this hobby, keep an open mind.  Hell, that's one of the main reasons I come here is to learn.  Regards......

Come on guys, our goal is to indirectly participate in the OP's sound quests not to work something out for ourselves.
I don't mind you guys having a discussion...

I'm looking into the Alta Audio Rheas & just waiting for correspondence from Mike from Alta Audio...& the possibility of buying ARC Ref 210 monos...maybe a Ref 5se as well...
Years ago,in a Stereophile Magazine interview,Bill Dundelston(sp?),owner & builder of Legacy audio products,was asked what he considered the hierarchy of the audio playback chain was.
He replied:Speakers.Recordings.Room Acoustics & LAST was Electronics.Cables & tweaks were NOT even mentioned.I never forgot that...
OP doesn't say his/her age......as we do, we hear less and less and also we hear differently.  ...perhaps great earphones would be a choice for serious listening, and owned speakers for  background music.