Wanting to try a tube amp.


Looking at  an ARC Ref 110 to go with my Ls28se. Used is fine with me want to keep it under 4k. I only stream thru a node 2i and Audio Mirror iii se. Speakers are GE Triton Refs. Any other thoughts for me? Room is 14 wide 24 deep 8 high. Listen to mainly Pink Floyd, ELP,  and rock in general. Don't play loud, about 75db. I'm already deaf and have a pretty decent noise floor in my head to compete with. Thanks.
knighttodd
With the efficiency at 93db you don't need a lot of watts
Right. I got 92dB but whatever, point is you will be fine with a handful of watts. No need to go used. Raven Nighthawk will do you just fine. https://www.ravenaudio.com/product/nighthawk-mk3-tube-amplifier/ Totally the high value/high sound quality way to go.

 The Ref 110 is a superb tube amp and a bargain for what they go for used. I saw o Hifishark that one just sold for $3200.  I have had no trouble with mine since I purchased it. And I have no real desire to upgrade at this point.

 IMHO 100 watts is the sweet spot for tube amps. My speakers are 92db and the Ref 110 is an excellent match. You want a bit of headroom. I tried a Ref 75 and in my system the sound was not as open. I found over time that I much prefer tube amps with 4 output tubes per channel. They don't tend to sound thin at times like some amps. My old V70 was the same way.



I typed in GE Triton in Google and I got a dishwasher! I'm too old GE means General Electric. 
I guess you should have read the whole post. For as many post's you have placed here I would think you would now what they are without thinking. But I guess you just need to be noticed. Don't bother replying to any of my questions. 
To Russ69, please take my apologies. I believe you were trying to be humourous. 
Miller Carbon. It seems the less expensive are integrated. I'm looking for just a power amplifier, and it needs to be balanced out.       The only thing holding me back on the Ref110 is no protection for the tubes. I've read that if you loose a tube it usually takes out a resistor.  Any thoughts on the Prima Luna Evo 400?

 If you have a bad tube failure it can take out a resistor. The resistor is for protection of the amp. It is very simple to replace. When I had a resistor blow, my ARC dealer fixed it for me at no charge. If need be I could have done it myself. I think it has happened to me twice in 30 years. Use good quality hand matched tubes from a reputable dealer. I use Jim McShane. He burns the tubes in a bit before matching them just like ARC. But he is much less expensive.

"...To Russ69, please take my apologies. I believe you were trying to be humourous..."

Thanks, no problem. I was shocked as hell when the General Electric Triton dish washer was the first thing Google grabbed. Us older (maybe I should say vintage) guys grew up with GE everything and GE commercials on the TV on all the prime time TV shows. I still fight to not say Victrola instead of record player. (Not really but my Grandad had one). The Edison cylinder player was up in the attic by that time...   
Back to the topic; I might try a Conrad-Johnson or a Prima Luna. The ARC gear can be a little dry and I would want to give the ARC pre a little more flavor with a musical amp. 
Thanks Russ69.         That's kinda what I was thinking about different sound. That's why I went with the Audio Mirror. This is my first tube set. I started speakers first, preamp second, dac next now amp. I have always ran SS. Starting in '77' with my Sansui 9090. Lots of info on tube sounds with the Prima Luna. 
@OP, 
I would also consider Atmasphere amps.
A quick check showed the ARC amps you are looking at are near $10K.
Considering your speakers are so efficient, I bet you'd get away with a lower powered amp. 
I own Atma MA-1's and they drive my slightly less efficient Vandy Treo's with ease.
And, dealing with Ralph Karsten is always pleasant. If you are interested, call him, he might have a demo available for a very reasonable price.
Bob
The VAC IQ series has balanced inputs, auto-bias as well as strong circuit protection.
I have a conrad johnson mv55 and it sounds amazing. It doesn't have balanced inputs, but that wasn't important to me and they can be had for about 1400 bucks. I build my own tube amps as well, but when I heard the mv55 I knew that I REALLY had to step up my diy game...lol

Its a good sounding amp playing through 94db speakers (audio nirvana super alnico 15" full range drivers in a ported bass reflex cabinet about as big as I am) and I never have to go past the 9 o'clock position on my preamp volume knob. Plenty of head room with enough to spare. I will never get rid of this amp. I absolutely love it.
I had a REF110 with a LS17se.  I was a great pairing and would be even better with a LS28se and give you a good taste of how great ARC tube amplification can be.  My REF110, purchased used, had been outfitted with KT120 tubes (it can not drive KT150s), and sounded great.  Highly recommended.
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Knighttodd I have a primaluna Evo 400. It's my first tube amp.
I'm driving either magnepan .7's or IMF RSPM MK IV. (been swapping back and forth). 
I think it's a great amp. Lots of tube choices and auto bias etc etc. Sweet sounding that's for sure.
The PL Evo 400 is a wonderful amp. I’ve heard it a few times and it’s extremely impressive. It’s also a real bargain for the price. I wouldn’t think twice about getting one if I didn’t already have McIntosh gear. Speaking of which, I have the MC275 which is just excellent and you can get a used one in the 4s. It’s a lot of power for a tube, but the downside is that you’re limited to just KT88s unlike the PL Evo 400. 
+1 on Atmasphere my buddy drives a pair of Devore 88's with an S-30 and loves it.
Bob Latino VTA-120. More than enough watts for your speakers. Get the capacitor upgrades. 
I’m running the Carver Crimson 275 with my Goldenear references..  love the sound, no problems driving to 100 db.  But listen at about 85 db max..
You want amazing sound with tube protection then look no further than Octave. You could try their RE 320 or RE 290.
I use their V70 Class A (KT-150) with Super Black Box & it's stunning. 

Quicksilver mono amps would be a nice fit with the ARC. I've been using QS gear for years and never a hiccup! Point to point wired and made in USA!
http://quicksilveraudio.com/amplifiers/
your speakers have the tremendous advantage of having built-in subs with their own amps built in.

According to Raven (millercarbon’s recommendation), discussing their built-in high-pass crossover, bass averages 65% of program content.

That means you can drive your speakers, already high efficiency, with much less power than others.

that’s a nice position to be in, especially when considering tubes.
Try the Audio Mirror Reflections. You got the DAC. Had PL integrated amps and power amps till I got Vlads amps. Auto-bias and you can roll the 6SN and L tubes. Gave me the sound I was looking for. Love em. 
We are agolden ear dealer and we just got in a fantastic trade.un prima luna dialogue hp with kt 150 which give 96 watts the combo sounds fantastic

Dave and troy
Audio intellect nj

@knighttodd,
The range of recommendations vary widely in how they sound. Have you heard many tube amps and can you describe what appeals to you? Both tube type and individual design matter. The difference between great OTL, and different pull pull tube type amps is like comparing a great sports car to a great SUV to a great sedan. All can be great, but which are you looking for? 
Personally, I love the sound of Atma-Sphere OTLs and the M60s would be a great value and plenty for your speakers. Speedy, airy and spacious with beautiful natural tone.
BAT 6C33C designs are proven, evolved and convenient w/auto-biasing. Ballsy bottom end and a slightly darker tonal balance. 
If you are inclined to stick with ARC, I've heard comments from a famous speaker designer about how much better the KT150 is vs. the KT120. Lots has been written on this topic and I'd suggest sticking w/the KT150-based designs if ARC is your cup of tea. IMHE, many ARC power amp owners end up dissatisfied after large investments and move sideways cost-wise to other options that make them happier. ARC built their rep on their preamps for good reason. 
Quicksilver may not look the sexiest, but their owners satisfaction and their longstanding reliability are worth noting.  Cheers,
Spencer
Moofoo- just curious, hat is a Vlad amp?
“Had PL integrated amps and power amps till I got Vlads amps.”
+sbank 

He is correct. Different topologies will give you a different sound. You should really listen to some different tube amps before making a decision.

ARC sounds somewhat cold to my ears, whereas CJ sounds warmer. Mcintosh will sound different still. It all comes down to what you expect a tube amp to sound like and picking one that meets those expectations.

Maybe save up and go to the RMAF or one of the other audio shows. That way you can audition plenty of amps in one place and make an informed decision as to what sounds best to you.


Todd,
I feel like I am in your boat too when it comes to hearing and lower level play.
Couple thoughts. Vlad's monos or Decware Monos. Both fairly reasonable
and should have good synergy with your system. Make sure you get a trial
period. I have an AM dac too and love it!
@cincyhound - Vladimir Bazelkov makes the 6c33c based 45w SET monoblocks. He is the Audio Mirror company. Sorry for not being clear😀.
Lot's of great suggestions and recommendations. Really appreciate the information. Since I live in Colorado, I might wait for RMAF. I hate to wait. I am kinda leaning towards the Prima Luna 400. Like the analogy on the cars I'm a sedan. But I want to tinker with my ride. Lots of options for tubes to get a different sound. Thanks again everyone.
If you're already deaf, ARC is good, but maybe a little overkill.  Be aware that the care and feeding of a properly maintained ARC tube amp can equal the cost of a used ARC tube amp.
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I would recommend a used Leben cs600.....
Sandy from GoldenEar uses Primaluna amps. That would be a great place to start and possibly finish. You can find great deals on used Dialogue Premium amps. That’s what I would be shopping for as my first tube amp. My first tube amp was a used Primaluna Dialogue One. Loved it and sold it three years later for almost what I paid for it. Haven’t really gone back to solid state since. 
point to point wired and likely one of the most reliable  tube amps out there.  Ive been using a low powered iteration for years , never a hiccup.   In your price range and new of course and the reputation of Decware . 

https://www.decware.com/newsite/TORII.htm
I have an Evo 400 being delivered tomorrow. Thanks for all the responses. I will follow up when all is settled in. Equipment will be Node2i, AM Tubador Se, ARC LS28SE, PL Evo 400, GE Triton Reference speakers. Not the matching washer dryer @russ69 . Lmao.
I have a pair of NY Audiolab Julius Futterman OTL monoblocks, modified to triode, they are about 45 or 50 watts each, driving a pair of 15” Altec Landing 604Cs that are 101db. 
Ayon is a great 1st tube integrated for a couple reasons 
it’s the Only microprocessor controlled amp that you calibrate by pushing a button it monitors each tube, and it s not a cheap auto bias system where a resistive network averages voltage and aging to all tubes , Ayons patented  system  literally adjusts each tube to be at its optimum, and if a tube does blow
no big surge to take a a transformer or circuit ,it just goesinto stand by
and a led light will tell you what tube is bad ,shut down wait 15 minutes
put in new tube hold bias button for 30 seconds it takes a few minutes to calibrate then your back up and running ,also a transformer kand chokes is the heart  of a vacuum tube amp,preamp, Ayon uses world class Lundahl chokes and transformers , I know of No other company in the $5k range that uses chokes and transformers of this quality. I have owned 2 of these with -0:issues.
Good choice on the PL. Will be interesting to hear your thoughts. I think PL can be the tube gateway drug. At least it was for me. My tube journey started with PL then to a Line Magnetic LM508 and now with a Canary M90. Also tried amps from Odyssey, Peachtree, Van Alstine, PS Audio, Linear Tube Audio, and a small tube integrated from Tektron along the way. All good, and sometimes great, but I'm considering going back to a PL Evo300 amp. Before I do I have a used Mastersound EL-34 integrated on the way that I want to use while my preamp gets serviced. I've also been wanting to check out Mastersound so this will be a good time to do it. It might end up staying in my main system or office. However, my wife keeps telling me her favorite overall was the Primaluna, and she has better hearing than me. I also thought I could live with that amp forever and be happy. For some reason, while other amps have sounded better in some ways, none have given me the enjoyment that my PL did. Maybe it was because it was my first tube amp and my "benchmark," so in the end I may end up pretty much back where I started.
Yeah I'm not going to chase a bunch of different amps. I'm no audiophile in any sense. I just like great sound. I'm not needing to hear the breath between words or the sound of every pick on the guitar string. I do like good bass. That's why I bought the Golden Ears. The ARC puts out good bass also. I just want an Amp that is easy to use. This seems to fit the bill. No guess work and it's not that expensive. Plus I know where the seller is.
I had ARC gear, including the Ref 40th and then the ARC Ref. 10.  About 4 years ago I started switching to Octave.  First the MRE 220 Monos and then the Jubilee preamp.

Octave amps with the additional capacitance provided by the Super Black Box ("SBB") will drive any speaker, irrespective of the load challenges.  More importantly, Octave gear represents the best of both design worlds: the transient speed, inner detail and punch of solid state and the bloom, realism and atmosphere that only valves can produce.

There RE 320 is an incredible stereo amp and only requires a single SBB.  It will amaze.  One of the members in our local audio club has one and it is the envy of our group.
Audio Hungary I-20 , nice unit ""but"" the price is going up.
@knighttodd 

I thought the same thing. Then I got the PL and started with different tubes. Found out EL-34/KT77 are my favorites and Gold Line 12au7 are great too. Then, after a few years, wondered what else could be out there and went down the tube rabbit hole... still falling. Good luck.

the ref 110 is one hell of a tube amp

but i am in agreement with others who have stated it is overkill for the efficient golden ear speakers with built in self powered subs

i would look in the range of 30-50 wpc tube amps... fewer power tubes, perhaps even more pure sound