"Big tubes" start at the 300B. Real men go for the 845
This is going to be heresy in the Woo thread, but I am going to say it anyway. After investing a great deal of time and money in tubes and tube amps over the past 3 years I am done. I have found, in the Violectric V281, a solid state amp that comes ever so close to the very best tube amp I have ever heard (Glenn 300B - an amp that eats the WA5 for breakfast) in the things that tubes do so well (holographic effect + warmth) and retains the detail and dynamics of solid state. It really is like having your cake and eating it too, at a fraction of the price. Add in close to 100% reliability and close to zero warm up time and I am out of the tube game. Give me a V281 + HE6/HD800S and I am done.