Going to try Tung Sol

Discussion in 'The Tone Zone' started by CraigP, Jul 6, 2019.

  1. CraigP

    CraigP Well-Known Member

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    In my DSL40, I am currently running stock (JJ) tubes. Just ordered some Tung Sol from TubeDepot to change things up a bit and see how it goes. If nothing else, I will have extras spares in case I need one.
     
  2. paul hancher

    paul hancher Well-Known Member

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    i really like their preamp tubes, and their brown base 5881’s sound killer in my brownface bassman clone!
     
  3. Cadorman

    Cadorman Well-Known Member

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    I recently put a matched set of them in my TSL100 and it sounds really good. Very happy with them.
     
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  4. charveldan

    charveldan Well-Known Member

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    Hope you bought a matched pair & bias the amp.
     
  5. BanditPanda

    BanditPanda Well-Known Member

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    Speaking of pre amp tubes I just recently learned that " balanced " pre amp tubes are important and make a great improvement in tone.
    Is that true or false or dependent on the amp?
    Worth the additional 5 bucks?
    BP
     
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  6. charveldan

    charveldan Well-Known Member

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    Not true unless the tube in question is so un-balanced its defective.
     
  7. johnfv

    johnfv Well-Known Member

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    Are you talking about the matched Phase Inverter story? It's largely a myth. I tried some matched tubes years back and couldn't tell any significant difference. Some people even argue that un-matched can give a better tone.
     
  8. johnfv

    johnfv Well-Known Member

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    I do like the Tungsol 12AX7, my favorite CP 12AX7 is the Mullard reissue. For higher gain stuff, sometimes a basic Chinese 12AX7 can work very well...
     
  9. BanditPanda

    BanditPanda Well-Known Member

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    Yes...this off the Eurotubes site:
    We get questioned quite a bit on the subject of balanced PI tubes so we’ll elaborate a little. Most PI circuits are not designed to be perfectly balanced. Ah ha!!! Say what? So it’s snake oil then? No, we’ll explain. Most all circuits using long tail phase inverters are designed with a slight amount of asymmetry. The reason for this is because when both sides are dead on, the amp will sound a bit sterile and be missing that bit of 3D swirl that makes a tube amp sound alive. This is also the case with a way out of balance circuit, it will sound sterile and certain frequencies will suffer from phase cancellation. Logic says (we’re big fans of logic and common sense) then why balance the current on an imperfect circuit? The short answer is to get the result the designer wanted, but we’ll go further into this. When we acquired the test equipment to check for balanced triodes we started stuffing balanced tubes in everything we have to see if there was a real difference or if it was snake oil. The results? In some amps it was nothing short of amazing and in others it was noticeable but not jaw dropping. A good friend of Eurotubes who has a Marshall 6100 30th anniversary, (one of those amps Bob just loves to hate, he calls it the little Blue bastard), had fought getting a good tone with it for years so he brought it back in a few months after we started using balanced PI tubes and when we changed the PI tube for a balanced tube we were all astounded at the change. The amp simply went from so-so at best to, holy crap, is that the same amp!! So, morale of the story? It’s just like the old argument that a rectifier tube does not change the tone of an amp because it’s not directly in the tone circuit. This of course is completely false and anyone who has ever done an A/B and compared a chinese, a sovtek, a JJ and different NOS rectifier tubes will tell you there is an amazing difference in dynamics and tone. A good balanced PI tube does make a difference and it’s not snake oil. All you need is a pair of ears to hear the difference. You will still find a lot of skepticism and bad press from the "nay Sayers" on the benefits of using balanced PI tubes. The only question we ask them is "have you personally had experience in listening to the difference between balanced and unbalanced PI tubes in different amps?" Oh, and request an honest answer when posing the question
     
  10. charveldan

    charveldan Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]

    Anybody that believe's a word from Euro-bob deserves what they get.

    Bob also tells you on his website to put JJ KT-88's & GZ-34's in your MESA Rectifiers.
    Boogie board is full of posts from people who did it and blow fuses every time.

    The fact he's a JJ fanboi is a huge conflict of interest and should be a red flag to anyone.
     
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  11. BanditPanda

    BanditPanda Well-Known Member

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    So Danny boy you're saying that " balanced " PI's is a myth?
    BP
     
  12. MoreAmpsPlease

    MoreAmpsPlease Active Member

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    Tried Tung Sols and no issues. The standout tubes lately have been the new production Mullards. Heavier glass. Last EL34 set was Mullard and they work great. I had bought four of the cheapest unmatched chinese EL34's as a baseline to see what that sounded like, so if I developed an output problem I could have sacrificial tubes! That's how my tube box is laid out, sacrificial cheap tubes on the left, tried and true on the right.

    Right now I like Mullard in V1, V2 anything from the good bin (Tung Sol, JJ, GT), V3 Sovtek LPS (long plate). JJ's seem to test high for output volume but not always the quietest tube in the drawer. But they haven't gone full microphonic on me at least.
     
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  13. BanditPanda

    BanditPanda Well-Known Member

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    I use a DSL 40. Does it have " "Long Tailed Phase Inverter" - and that circuit itself, is self-balancing. ?
    BP
    :ot:
     
  14. Cadorman

    Cadorman Well-Known Member

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    I was talking about Tung Sol EL34B tubes sounding nice in my TSL100. Always buy a matched set and check them when you set the bias. I got a set one time that was supposed to be matched and had one side at 40 and the other at 27 mv. I didn't much care for that.

    I do generally run the new Mullard EL34s and really like those as well. Seem very warm sounding to me.

    Matched preamp tubes? I run what sounds good. Usually vintage 5751s in gain stages and just a regular new production Mullard 12AX7 for inverter and reverb if needed.
     
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  15. paul hancher

    paul hancher Well-Known Member

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    of course before my time with tubes - 1950’s & 1960’s - with all the top quality american-made tubes available you didn’t really even need to worry about bias. just throw them in and go.

    at least this is what i have been told. did not have the pleasure of owning a tube amp till the 1980’s.

    lost tech and know-how. coming back to bite us.
     
  16. charveldan

    charveldan Well-Known Member

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    Yep its a bust.
     
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  17. MonstersOfTheMidway

    MonstersOfTheMidway Well-Known Member

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    I have some Tung-Sol tubes that have served me well. I use their 12AX7 in my stock 410H in the gain stages: good distortion characteristics, good reliability, and very quiet. The Tung-Sol 12AX7 is a little on the bright side, but in my estimation that is a good thing because if I ever need a brighter sound, I can easily pop in the Tung-Sol as an option.

    Tung-Sol EL34B is another tube that has served me well in my stock 410H. Again, good reliability and very quiet.

    The average price among most dealers is decent for both the Tung-Sol 12AX7 and EL34B. If you have a high gain rig that can accept 12AX7 and/or EL34, the Tung-Sol 12AX7 and EL34B are worth a try.
     
  18. CraigP

    CraigP Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I purchased from Tube Depot, never had any issues with mix-matched PT with them and I usually ask or specify matched sets. Last time I spoke with them, a lady (Michelle?) stated they "always" do matched sets when filling their orders, unless you are buying an individual tube for some reason.
    Bias? What is this bias you speak of? LOL Yes, that's the first thing I do when moving or swapping PT. Thanks for looking out though.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2019
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  19. CraigP

    CraigP Well-Known Member

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    I've never had issues with "unmatched" preamp tubes. From what I understand, matching of preamp tubes (at least for my end user limited needs) is just another marketing tool used to get a couple of extra dollars from sales. And I am usually very determined to get "the best" whenever I can but I do not get matched preamp tubes.
     
  20. BanditPanda

    BanditPanda Well-Known Member

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    Right and I note that you saw Micky's reply in the DSL40C thread as follows::

    There are interesting arguments both ways.
    Those who prefer tone like unbalanced.
    Those who prefer power like balanced.

    BP
     

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