I'm charting a path toward upgrading my entire system, but I've yet to drop a dime on anything but my new Rega P5 TT. I'm just in the learning and planning stage. I want to have an idea of my destination before I start auditioning equipment.
One choice is whether to go with a tube amp or a solid-state amp. I gather this can affect things like speaker selection. So the main point of my question is what are the trade-offs between these technologies other than sound. OTHER than sound. I will audition amps in my price range to decide on sound qualities. I'm not looking for brand recommendations either. It's all the other aspects of living with a system that I'm interested in.
From my research so far, I believe the following are generally true:
- Tube amps usually cost more than solid state amps of similar quality.
- Tube amps are heavier than solid-state amps.
- Tube amps generate more heat than solid-state amps.
- Tube amps are often larger than solid-state amps (I'm not really sure about this one, I'm judging from pictures.)
- Tube amps have higher maintenance costs since tubes must be replaced occasionally.
And what about:
- Power consumption?
- Sensitivity to voltage irregularities?
- Listening room characteristics?
- Ability to support stereo audio and also home theater style applications?
Are there any other differences between products built using the two different technologies that might be an important consideration when planning a stereo system?