Please call us for the latest inventory, and we can often outsource these tubes for you. Fine s vintage blackplates. New Old Stock white box. Beautiful blackplates, most Baldwin label organ stock tubes. Tubes for organs have been factory screened for noise and microphonics, and are an audiophile "secret" bargain tube. Blackplate s vintage sweetness that must be heard to be believed at this price.
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That distinction probably falls to the 12AX7, especially when you add guitar amps to the mix. Why three quads you ask? Spares for my DIY phono stage. Unless of course, you have your heart set on some Amperex or Telefunkens.
Then the prices are, to say the least, eye watering. A note to guitar players: The 12AT7 is not normally used in guitar amps, the exception being as a reverb driver in some Fenders. Your amp tech or favourite tube vendor should be able to sort you out. All tubes under review had at least hours run time on them before serious listening commenced. Some by a little, some by a lot, and almost always for the better. To the uninitiated, and even us old timers, this can be disconcerting to say the least.
This is normal for European tubes of a certain vintage and is not a defect. The going rate is about 19 to 22 US dollars each. Bass seemed extended and reasonably articulate, mids were clear, and the highs struck a good balance between too dull or too bright.
The sound of these tubes in the Elekit, optioned as described above, was very good even in comparison to a much more expensive amp. As such, they are some of the least expensive Mullard NOS tubes around. The manufacture date on these is Between 40 and 50 US dollars each is what they will set you back. The same tube is available with the Mullard name and logo, but usually costs an extra 10 or 15 bucks. Bass was as deep, but a bit more detailed and articulate, with slightly better control.
They can usually be found for between 18 and 20 US dollars each. That is, if you buy in to the stereotype — no pun untended, well maybe a small pun — that Telefunken smooth plate tubes were all about the midrange. Vocal sibilance is spotlit, which is not a good thing. The RFT, not so much, for what I value in a listening experience.
Is the Mullard worth approximately twice as much as a Tung-Sol? Other new production tubes that might be worth a try are the Russian-made reissues of famous brand names from yesteryear, Mullard and Genalex for instance. I can suggest ones to steer clear of and ones that might work well.
This should narrow the field a bit, but in the end you just might have to try a few different ones to find your favourite. Is it worthwhile chasing down rare read: really, really expensive NOS tubes? Let me tell you a story. When used in the first gain stage of my phono preamp they were not nearly as quiet, by a large margin, as the Sovtek tubes they replaced.
Positioned further along the amplification chain the noise might not have been objectionable. The Valvos made me think of the hundred-plus year old bottles of wine that are auctioned for lottery jackpot prices. The wine is not fit to drink; it long ago turned to vinegar. Decent quality new wine and reasonably priced new and not-so-old NOS tubes are readily available. Get a new bottle on your way home tonight and get some new tubes too.
Pop the cork and spin some tunes. My Usual Rant This is where I usually nag you folks about putting a few hours on new tubes as soon as you get them. I took my own advice, for once, and sure enough one of the NOS tubes expired after about five hours use.
It had been purchased from a reputable vendor and was replaced without charge. Post Views: 21,
A Mini Review of Three 12AT7 Tubes
Philips E80CC Vintage Tube & Tube Socket
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