First, let me say I don't have 15" Tannoys, but 12" HPD's. I don't think that makes any difference when determining what amp works well. I have used an Aragon 3002 (300 Wpc), Pass Labs M2, and now Class D Audio 254 w/upgraded power supply, two modules bridged to mono @500 Wpc. The Class D is the best of them, but I enjoy my HPD's the most when using good tube amps, SET 300B, SET 845.
Nelson Pass (and everyone else at Pass/First Watt) uses Tannoy's to test their amplifiers... so like @br3098 I suspect many of Nelson's amps could be great with your speakers.
I listened to Steve Guttenburgs recent Audiophiliac review of
the Tannoy Cheviot. Gutt is a true disciple of Nelson Pass-
owning multiple pieces from First Watt and Pass Labs. The Chevvy's
sensitivity is 4 points under mine. He said the FW was good but his 100.5 Pass monos were way better.
I now have a Pass Labs XA25 on order.
Thanks for all your above help.
Most of the time I'm using my McIntosh C2300 (with NOS ADZAM tubes)
Once in a while I swap in my vintage Marantz 7T just to justify keeping it.
I find both pair well with the XA30.5, and feel I've reached the end game with my core components.
Let me know if I can answer any other questions. I look forward to hearing your thoughts on the XA25, so please share when you've had some time with it!
Contact Tommy at Digital Amplifier Company. I have one of his Stereo Maraschino Integrated Amps and it sounds fantastic on any speaker I drove with it. Plus he offers a 30 day no questions return policy.
Question for Yakbob (but of course all are welcome). I was surprised that you are using the MC2300 with Pass amp. Isn't there a mismatch between the MC2300 output impedance vs. Pass input impedance? My recollection is this is not an ideal pairing. I ask because I am considering buying the Tannoy Legacy Arden. My current pre-amp is MC2500 with MC452 amp (driving vintage Polk 1.2 SDAs). I like the MC2500 a lot want to keep it, but am curious about using Pass amps with the Tannoy. You appear to be doing the Mac/pre and Pass/amp with good success. Am I wrong, such that these two can pair well? Any thoughts/input appreciated.
The C2300 is spec'd at 220 ohms, which is excellent for a tube preamp - so I don't see how that could have any issues driving the Pass amp.
Matching brand & line of pre to power is not necessary. On my Tannoys I've mixed and matched all manner of combinations between Rogue, ARC, and VAC preamps (all tube), and Rogue, VAC, and Phison (SS) power amps. Some of the mixed-brand matches have come out atop the heap. A couple of same brand pairings have surprised by being at or near the bottom of my list. Of course sometimes the brand matching works out great, too.