Well, there's that the ouput impedence of the pre should be 100 times less than the input of the amp thing. Rule of thumb stuff, so they say. Its not uncommon to run in to an impedence mismatch between a tube pre and a solid amp, so set your calculator for 100X when surfin' for amplification.
I dont know maths, also dont cal maths, life experience:
Jadis DPL2 + Meridian 505 mono
ARC LS2 MKII + Pass Lab 150
Jadis sounds very romantic, but losing bass. ARC combo more dynamic, but lack a bit power (may be Pass Lab need to be replaced something).
However, I believe things should work better in the same character.......tuibe with tube, ARC with ARC, Jadis with Jadis, Meridian with Meridian, etc
If you want a look alike pair that are made for each other, then look at the Blue Circle BC21.1 preamp and BC22 MkII amp.
The Conrad Johnson PV10 also works well with solid state from my experience.
Ohlala gives good advice with his 100X formula, although, sometimes satisfactory results can be achieved with less difference than that. Generally, tube preamps have higher output impedance than solid-state units, and transistor amplifiers often have lower input impedance than tube models and that's where the potential for mismatch creeps in. If you own a unit now that you intend to keep and use, then the 100x formula should be a consideration in your search for a matching piece. I usually like to see around 50k input impedance in a solid-state amp, as that will mate well with many tube preamps. Then, using that 100x formula, you can go up to 500 ohms output impedance (or thereabouts) in the preamp without a problem.
Just for clairfication. My Ayre V-3 states that it has an input impedence of 100K per phase. That means I can have a pre-amp of up to 1,000 ohms output impedence or does the per phase effect the formula? Thanks!
You will find this out. Using a tube preamp and solid state amp will give you very good transparancy but lowend and dynamics will suffer somewhat but still be good. if you listen at lower levels tube preamp great. Ive used Audio research LS1. LS 2bII balanced. Audible illusionsM3A. I now have a krell KBL Balanced that just blows the other 3 away in dynamics but isnt quite as airy or transparnt. A good trade off on my side. Thru a krell ksa250 amp. (Killer). Ihave used enough giant amps fill this page and always end up with the ksa250. My 3rd one. good luck!!
Here's the missing bit of info:
if the ratio of the pre's output impedance vs. amp's input impedance is marginal, then keep the interconnects SHORT. 2 meters or less is recommended. If you have to have long interconnects, your chances of success are better with a balanced (XLR/XLR) system. Worst case scenario: preamp w/ 500 ohm output impedance driving 20 ft of RCA/RCA cable into an amp w/ 10k ohm input impedance.
Best of luck,
Folks it is not only the impedance matching you should take into the consideration.
In general SS amps give out full power with just 1V or bellow at input and tube preamps might have an extraneous gain. Many tube preamps have can be noisy if paired with sencitive SS amps at low volume levels. The good solution is to have a low gain tube preamp with SS power amps.
So wouldn't passive preamps work best?
I'd say that with SS that have >=47K impedance passives will do the best job for the money invested indeed.
Wow! Have I got a lot to learn! I just have an integrated MAC MA6450. I was thinking about trying to use the amp section from that with some sort of an entry level tube preamp (Cary, C-J, Rogue??). Then eventually upgrade to a real SS power amp. Or, just sell the integrated and start over.
Any suggestions for a $2500 - $3000 set up (used)? Headphone and phono would be pluses!
Why not just swap your MA-6450 for an MA-6850? From what I
can tell it's the exact same unit except with a tube preamp
section. The MA-6450 is a terrific amp. I can't imagine the
MA-6850 would be much of an improvement.
I thought the 6800 series was all SS.
I humbly suggest you check the archives.
I am ALWAYS checking the archives here on the 'gon! This is a fantastic site which I read until I am bleary eyed at 1:00 am in the morning. Thanks to all for your input!!! It is very much appreciated. The Audiogon community is the best!
"Golden Ears" reckon SS pre + valve amp; eg Cello with Jadis. And it works. Or valve with valve. The golden rule? Listening!
Try EAR equipment. At the moment I've got a 834L pre (with Jadis valves) + Jadis JA30 + K'Horns. It's a lovely preamp and reasonably cheap.
Or listen to Electrocompaniet stuff.
Last week I listened to so's mega system & was rather disappointed. Genesis 1's with huge Gryphon mono amps. Good but not marvellous. Yet I repember being really bowled over a few years back with same speakers with Jadis JA200's. I think the room is probably to blame more than the equipment.
I've tried Wadia 27 directly into Jadis JA30's. Not fantastic.
Much better with preamp. More open, more life, wider & deeper image.
Better impedance match?
Jadis preamps do have an "impedance matching" valve.
I've tried a passive preamp: not good. But I must admit I haven't tried the better passives like Audio Synthesis Passion.