You like the 331 better than the 27.5 and S300 you list?
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There's a lot that I liked about the S300. It seemed to have loads of power and control and never made my Apogee's object. However, it just sounded too dry and bright most of the time. I was always trying to tame the highs with cables etc until I gave up and got the D400. I never did get to try it with a tube preamp (I did not have one at the time).
I've never owned a 27.5, but have heard it on my system. It has the Levinson characteristic in the treble which I like so much, however, as I remember less control in the bass. It seems to me the 331 has everything the 27.5 has but with more bass control.
Yes, I noticed that Audio Review had a few negative comments on the 331 which I really don't understand. This amp could be more speaker and system sensitive than the older Levinson series. However, every professional magazine review on the 331 that I've seen has been positive including Larry Greenhill's in Stereophile which gave it a class A rating at the time.
You might give the new Pass XA200 a try. Pure class A, and if it's anything like the X350 I own and use on Mageneplanar MG20Rs, you're in for a treat. Check out the Pass X350 review thread for some further thoughts on Levinson amps. You're perception of the synergy of a well-matched tube preamp/ss power amp is right on the money. If it's feasable, sniff around for a used ARC LS22 or LS25. You'l like what you hear. Also, speaker cables can make a HUGE difference with revealing speakers like yours and mine. Those big ribbon drivers won't deliver their best unless the cable/interconnect combo is complementary. I'm getting fabulous - no, jawdropping - results with a new set of Cardas Golden Reference biwire cables. Cardas Golden Cross interconnects compliment the rest of the system. I'm about to move up to Cardas Golden Ref balanced (XLR)interconnects between amp and preamp, so we'll see what's what there. Given the results I've gotten with Cardas so far, I don't think that this is much of a gamble.
Yeah, the XA200 is very expensive, and huge. I auditioned the 334 at length and did not like it as much as the McIntosh 352 in the same exact setup (we just swapped the amps out) of B&W N802s and Proceed CDP. I was surprised because I really wanted to like the big Levinson. The Mc also sounds exquisite with tube preamps like the Mc C2200. The detail, control, coherence, and holographic imaging captured my heart. Just a thought.