Questions on switching to tube amplification

I posted a similar message on The Asylum. My system currently has a Modulus 3a tube preamp, a Raysonic cd 168 tube cd player, Classe 15 solid state amp, Vandersteen 2ce speakers, speaker cables and interconnects are all MIT Terminator 2. I long for that lush tube sound with non fatigueing highs. I listen to about 60% Rock, 25% Jazz and 10% classical. I have an extensive music collection of cd, vinyl, and lossless digital via my laptop.

I am looking to buy something used between 1,500 and 2,000.00 max. I am not interested in modified amps other than different brand of tubes. I am looking for recommendations and why. I look forward to your help.

83d96326 9a8a 4eca b738 6dc28f39ebbcstereo5
Keep an eye out here for used Butlers, they are very good amps with a unique circuit topology.

The Quicksilver V4 Mono amps are almost in your range and would be my suggestion. Will match the AIM3 pre amp and Vandersteens as well as be a reliable choice for you long term.
Cayin or VAS is the way to go.

I would find out what dealers have tube amps available new in your area and audition them. See what brands you like the sound of. Most offerings from a company have a similar type of "house" sound. I would look at maybe Cary, VTL, Manly, Rouge, CJ and see what you like the sound of. You might have a listen to an Audio Research amp also though I don't know that I would call their amps lush. Then look for used amps from the manufacturers you like the sound from.

I will tell you that both Cary and Audio Research have excellent customer service if you need parts or repair. I am sure there are others but these are the ones I have dealt with.
The 2Ce's are very tube-friendly!! You won't have any troubles finding something to work with them.
Nothing would be better than to borrow a few tube amps in your price range, take them home and see what happens. Your ears will never stop rewarding you for the move.

Stereo5 what general area of the planet are you in?

Happy (valve amp) Listening!
Stereo5, you have tubes in practically all your stuff except the speakers. :)

You might want to take a listen to a hybrid amp (tube input stage, SS output stage), since you have tubes at every other stage already. At least that'll make it easier to get something in the neighborhood of the 175 watts that you've been getting from your venerable Classe.

Brands? van Alstine, Vincent, Counterpoint (used only, but you can get upgrades at, Jolida come to mind. I'm using van Alstine's Ultra 550 and I can definitely hear the influence of those little glowers.
Recently a Cary Rocket 88 R/CAD-808 (30 watts triode; 60 watts ultralinear) was for sale on Audiogon for $1400. I once tried one, bought it, and was converted from large box Naim components to tubes. While not a current model, Cary is great on service and would advise you regarding compatibility with your current preamp. I like buying North American when possible.
Rogue amps and PrimaLuna are also in your price range, and worth auditioning. I own a Modulus pre and used it for 10 years with a Classe CA-200 amp with Vandersteen 3 speakers. I would think Your system already leans to a fairly nice, laid-back sound. When I switched to a tube amp, my choice was the McIntosh MC275, which sounded darn good with the Vandies.

For more richness, you might look at Conrad Johnson gear. The MV-50/52 etc. for instance might be just the ticket for you, and save you some money too versus some of the other suggestions above. You need to be a little careful with the Audible Illusions, since it has relatively high output impedence. You should look for a power amp with higher input impedence. Also, you may be disappointed with the bass you get from your tube amp transition compared to the Classe. Everything's a trade-off, and you need to decide what matters most to you within the money you're willing to pay.

Enjoy the journey!

The Quicksilver V4 suggestions sounds like a mighty good one with your system.

You've just got to let us know on this thread what happens and all about your adventures... I for one would be very curious to see where you land and hear your thoughts after you've been there a while.

Happy Hunting & Listening!