push pull or single ended

First post here and appreciate any replies.  While not new to high end audio, I've never had a tube amp.  Looking to purchase a new amp for my mid/tweeter cabinets in a bi-amped system.  Thinking about a tube amp as I've never had one and have read a lot about them, mostly all positive.  Never having heard a tube amp, I'm wondering if I'd be able to hear a difference between the push-pull type and the single ended type.  Not a huge budget as I'm on a fixed budget.  (63yrs. old and on disability for 20+yrs.)  Appears I could get more watts per dollar with a push-pull amp but don't need a whole lot of watts as this is for the top end of my system.  Also like to get a new SS amp for my bottom end but that's another subject.  Would I be able to hear a difference between the two types of amps?  Thanks for the input.  BTW, not really anywhere I can audition the two types.
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I'm going to add, there can be a pretty good amount of weight with most well made valve amps.. The exception is a Crimson-275 Carver. It's still pretty hefty. 25-30 lbs. I think.. You said disabled! Weight and issue?

75+ watts per channel 5  year warr on chassis and tubes..
You can't beat that. I think they are under 3k. They are a great sounding unit. It will do the bass and you can add a good class d for the bass later.  BUT don't WAIST a lot of $$ on fancy class ds unless you want to use them for Non Biamp mode, too. Best of both worlds. or Save your money and buy a less expensive pro model or something like that.. or a Dayton unit. 1000 watt A/B units, low idle current... Dependable.

Carver run cool too. Touch a valve no problem..

I'm not a Carver owner, BUT I have used a buddies a few times.. I repaired it. The kids knocked the valves out while it was on.. BOOM

Just replaced the valves it was fine.. Snapped off though.. I was pretty impressed.. A lot of amps that would have been a pretty heafy bill. Just a set of power valves..

There is not a lot of Carver talk.. They are good units for the money and easy to take care of.. A/B amp. Bob Carvers way...


It is hard to offer any meaningful generalizations about the differences between pushpull and single-ended triode (SET) amps; there are many good and bad examples of both types.  I am personally a fan of lower-powered tube amps and I own both SET and pushpull tube amps. 

While SET amps are very simple and minimalist in design, this does NOT mean they can be made at lower cost than a roughly comparable pushpull amp because they demand specialized output transformers that tend to be expensive.  Because a SET output transformer must be conducting at full power through the primary windings at all time, the transformer must be pretty large even when the output is modest.  I have not heard low-priced examples of SET amps that perform satisfactorily.  Most of the better sounding triode tubes deliver quite low power when used in SET amps (e.g., 45, 2a3, 300b) so it is quite a challenge to match them with most speakers.  There are more powerful triode tubes, such as the 211, that can be used in SET amps, but, the much higher voltages involved make them considerably more expensive if they are to be made to operate safely and reliably.

I think both SET and pushpull amps can be made to sound very good.  Recognizing that this is a rough generalization, I tend to find pushpull amps to be more "punchy" (tighter, more powerful bass), but, that more punchy quality makes the sound just a touch more "mechanical" sounding and less natural and relaxed than the sound of SET amps.  That is NOT to say that either kind of amp is lacking in dynamics, that is certainly not the case.  At more modest listening levels, I find tube amps to be considerably MORE dynamic, lively, and engaging than solid state amps.  Of the two favorite amps that I own (both with output in the 6-8 watt range), I slightly prefer my pushpull 349 amp (custom-made rebuild of a Western Electric 133 amp) over my parallel SET Audio Note Kageki (twin 2a3 tubes per channel).

There is another kind of tube amp you should also consider.  This is an output transformerless tube amp.  These types of amps are capable of delivering astonishingly dynamic and vibrant sound, again, even when overall volume level is modest.  Like any other amp type, the specific design and voicing matters, so one does have to make personal choices on the specific model.

A push-pull amp is an easier transition from a SS amp. Set amps are a different animal.
Thanks for all the input.  Lots to think about.  Thumbs up.
An easy recommendation are the Dennis Had (Cary) Inspire Audio SE 6L6, EL34, 6550 and KT88 amps. About $1300.