#2
6L6 valves can sound quite harsh, slightly cold and are usually preferred for high gain - Think Peavey 6505
EL34 valves sound warmer, and more British - think Marshall
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#3
6L6s are generally preferred for cleans and high gain. Most Fender tube amps (Blues Jr/Pro Jr excepted) and Mesas (except the Stiletto, I'm guessing) use them. They're associated with American voicing.

EL34s are the tubes which have a British voicing. They don't have as much gain as the 6L6s or get as clean, but they are preferred for a warm crunchy rock sound. Most Marshall tube amps use them.
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#4
+10 each to the two above me.

there are exceptions though to that rule. just rembemer that, there are some 6L6amps that sound VERY marshally
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#6
Quote by Bostonrocks
there are exceptions though to that rule. just rembemer that, there are some 6L6amps that sound VERY marshally

Very true, but to get the gist here, rather than complicate things

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could one switch between the two? like remove an el34 for a 6L6?


Some, but not all amps can.
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#7
yes you'd have to check the bias and make sure your amp can run the voltage of the other tube, depending on the amp
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#8
from your username, i would think your going for EL34's
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#9
Quote by nutinpwnsgibson
from your username, i would think your going for EL34's

me? haha
they were just my influences to pick up a guitar.
And just putting this out there, el34 can pull of metal tones as well, right? like Megadeth. Just to be clear that they are still capable.
#10
^ slayer, metallica (until justice), and megadeth all use EL34's for their sound
periphery/bulb!

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#11
oh yeah easy get a JCM800, Laney AOR, or Splawn Nitro. anything like that.
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countries have been toppled in the time it's taking, revolutions won got a black pres

yawn


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When he finally gets one it'll probably be televised like the Berlin Wall coming down.
The end of an era
#12
well i have a 5150 and i understand the coldness harshness etc but i tend to fix that with a OD and a good old speaker


im looking at bugera 333xl so i guess ill stuck with the el34s and see how it goes.
#13
Quote by page.slash
And just putting this out there, el34 can pull of metal tones as well, right?


You better believe they can.
I actually prefer el34s with high gain than 6L6 valves so...

-Take a listen to the (utterly ****) Diezel clip on my profile to hear el34s in action
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#14
Doesn't Kerry King's JCM800 have KT88s? Not to say EL34s can't do metal (they sure as hell can) but just asking.
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#15
Quote by shadow__666
Doesn't Kerry King's JCM800 have KT88s? Not to say EL34s can't do metal (they sure as hell can) but just asking.


oh rite, i lied actually. but he gets the point, british =/= not metal
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#16
You can't just go switching tubes willy nilly. If you have an amp w/ 6L6s in it, you may not be able to run EL34s.

Notable differences:

Impedence: 15k for EL34, 22k for 6L6 (affects output transformer and how hard tubes work)

Heater current: 1.4amps per tube for EL34s, 0.9 amps per tube for 6L6s...for a pair (50 watt amp), that's a whole extra amp. Doubt the power transformer is speced for that.

Max voltage: 800V for EL34, 550V for 6L6...probably not a problem.

Pinouts: EL34 has a separate supressor grid pinout, 6L6 amps can't take EL34s w/o mod

Now...if you amp is set up for taking either/or, then rock on, no worries.

If it's not though...the heater current thing will probably be killer, and you'll need your amp modded either way.

BTW, if your amp CAN take EL34s, I highly recommend going to KT77s from JJ. They keep the tone, but tighten up the flabby low end you can get in EL34s. Regardless of tube model, I recommend JJs for powertubes...
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#17
Quote by shadow__666
Doesn't Kerry King's JCM800 have KT88s? Not to say EL34s can't do metal (they sure as hell can) but just asking.

Y?es, but that amp was developed just a few years ago. He used some special mid-80's JCM800's that had some different circuitry that still ran the EL34 tubes.
Then there's this band called Slice The Cake...

Bunch of faggots putting random riffs together and calling it "progressive" deathcore.
Stupid name.
Probably picked "for teh lulz"

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#19
Quote by DLrocket89
You can't just go switching tubes willy nilly. If you have an amp w/ 6L6s in it, you may not be able to run EL34s.

Notable differences:

Impedence: 15k for EL34, 22k for 6L6 (affects output transformer and how hard tubes work)

Heater current: 1.4amps per tube for EL34s, 0.9 amps per tube for 6L6s...for a pair (50 watt amp), that's a whole extra amp. Doubt the power transformer is speced for that.

Max voltage: 800V for EL34, 550V for 6L6...probably not a problem.

Pinouts: EL34 has a separate supressor grid pinout, 6L6 amps can't take EL34s w/o mod

Now...if you amp is set up for taking either/or, then rock on, no worries.

If it's not though...the heater current thing will probably be killer, and you'll need your amp modded either way.

BTW, if your amp CAN take EL34s, I highly recommend going to KT77s from JJ. They keep the tone, but tighten up the flabby low end you can get in EL34s. Regardless of tube model, I recommend JJs for powertubes...

JJs E34Ls also have a pretty solid low end, and slightly more headroom than your typical JJ EL34.
#20
some marshalls are set up to take a e34l's or 6L6's. I had a JCM900 that could do that. I know someone who had a JCM800 that could do that as well. However, if amp has to be properly modified to be able to do that.

It's not an intense mod, i thing it's just as simple as changing or taking out a resistor, but i could be wrong.
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#21
EL34 can definitely be used for modern high gain. The Diezel Herbert, Framus Cobra, Bogner Uberschall, and ENGL SE EL34 all get very heavy and modern sounding, and all come factory with EL34.

Quote by DLrocket89
BTW, if your amp CAN take EL34s, I highly recommend going to KT77s from JJ. They keep the tone, but tighten up the flabby low end you can get in EL34s. Regardless of tube model, I recommend JJs for powertubes...

I do like KT77 in the right application, but not across the board for every amp. I like them to extend the lowend on certain amps, I loved what they did to my Quickrod. In an amp with a ton of lowend already however, you have to be really careful or they can get a bit boomy depending on the amp voicing. The extended highend can sound a bit odd in the wrong amp too. I didn't care for them in the Nitro, or in the Cobra.

I have some questions on the JJKT77 reliability at this point too. I know of at least 3 other people personally that I talk to, besides myself, that had theirs die on them prematurely in the last year. I've read stories of more. I know Splawn also stopped shipping his amps with them too, and it was because of reliability. I like the sound of the tube, but I don't trust the current production at this point.
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#22
Quote by Yngwi3
You better believe they can.
I actually prefer el34s with high gain than 6L6 valves so...

-Take a listen to the (utterly ****) Diezel clip on my profile to hear el34s in action


Or any Peters amp clip.
I've bought, sold, and traded more gear than I care to admit.
#23
Quote by Erock503

I have some questions on the JJKT77 reliability at this point too. I know of at least 3 other people personally that I talk to, besides myself, that had theirs die on them prematurely in the last year. I've read stories of more. I know Splawn also stopped shipping his amps with them too, and it was because of reliability. I like the sound of the tube, but I don't trust the current production at this point.


Interesting...I beat the crap out of mine and they are OK. I know for awhile a supplier of JJ had screwed up and was shipping them pins that were a bit too small, so they'd lose contact w/ the socket, start arcing, etc...thought those were out fo the pipeline by now though.

Do you know how they died? Arcing, something internal, heater went, etc...?
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#24
not sure how everyone's died. Mine was rather unexciting, vol drop and red plating. I know one other guy had his redplate too, got so hot they turned the lettering brown. One person I know that had a Nitro had it take something out in the amp, I think a SGR, so it was more violent, that could have been arcing. I do remember hearing about that pin problem too, do you know what timeframe that would be? It was early to the middle of last year where I saw the problems. I'm not sure on their current production, but that made me wary of them.
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#25
It is true that many current production JJ's have been having a high failure rate. Both power and pre tubes. As Erock mentioned, these problems started popping up early last year. I have some JJ pre's from 07 in my amp and they have been workhorses.
It's a shame because I like their tubes. Hopefully QC improves this year.
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#26
HRm...the two redplating ones sound like bais failures or improper biasing.

I think the bad pins are out of the system now, ie if you buy a new JJ you should be good...if I recall, they found out about it about 2 years ago and had it fixed last year.

I've never had any problems with new JJs for the last few years...I have a pair of 6V6s that I have biased at about 110% max dissipation and there is no problem there (JJ 6V6s are a bit odd though...they're overbuilt to the point of almost being 6L6s).

Had a bad Tung Sol 12AX7 out of the box, and a bad Ei (the ONLY Ei I've tried).

Hrm....weird.
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#27
Quote by DLrocket89
HRm...the two redplating ones sound like bais failures or improper biasing.


nope, I bias all my amps measuring the plate voltage and bias current using a bias probe. They were running perfectly safe as far as bias. I'm pretty familiar with how to bias my amps, and generally favor the colder side too, closer to around 60% max dissipation where I had the KT77 set. My friend that had his plate was using a Weber Bias rite. The same amp has had no problems with the next set of tubes, which are Ruby EL34B. My friend Corey has the amp now, and it's running them currently without issue.
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#28
Quote by Erock503
nope, I bias all my amps measuring the plate voltage and bias current using a bias probe. They were running perfectly safe as far as bias. I'm pretty familiar with how to bias my amps, and generally favor the colder side too, closer to around 60% max dissipation where I had the KT77 set. My friend that had his plate was using a Weber Bias rite. The same amp has had no problems with the next set of tubes, which are Ruby EL34B. My friend Corey has the amp now, and it's running them currently without issue.


I stand corrected then. Glad to see you doing your homework...

Weird tho. Hrmph.
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#29
Quote by DLrocket89
I stand corrected then. Glad to see you doing your homework...

Weird tho. Hrmph.

yeah, I'm not happy about it. I have an old set of good JJKT77 that are a couple years old. They came out of the first Quickrod I had, which was an older 3 preamp version with the old clean channel. They still sound good, but I mainly keep them for testing and in case I got another Quickrod. I recently tried them in my ENGL SE however, troubleshooting a vol issue, and man did they sound good in there. I was pretty surprised, because I didn't expect to like them in this particular amp. I'm actually considering getting a quad of the JJKT77 for it, but my experience with their reliability has me wary. They are the only production KT77 I know of though.
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Last edited by Erock503 at Mar 25, 2009,