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#1
I know mixing brand power tubes is generally frowned upon, but what are the ill affects of mixing preamp tubes?
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#2
uh..you basically have to mix preamp tubes. if you were to use all the same tube you'd get some problems, it sound like crapm, and some may blow right away.
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#3
No not in that sense sorry should've rephrased like say I had a tungsol 12ax7a and ruby 12ax7b in the same pre amp. Bad?
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#4
Quote by natehimself
uh..you basically have to mix preamp tubes. if you were to use all the same tube you'd get some problems, it sound like crapm, and some may blow right away.


Huh? No, that's not true. You can mix 12AX7's with 12AU7's and be perfectly fine, if the pins line up then you can put whatever preamp tube you want in there. Will it sound good, entirely depends on what tubes you put in.

Now, you cannot do this with power tubes, only with preamp tubes.
#6
I think Nate must be joking... lol

Installing the same brand of tube throughout the entire amp will not cause it to sound like crap or cause some to immediately blow. Do remember this: It's not at all uncommon for an builder to use ALL the same manufacturer. It will not cause any problems.

Now, regarding the sounding like crap portion... That's entirely subjective. You may like it, or you may not. It's quite common for guys to experiment with different brands and types of preamp tubes, in order to tweak their tone/sound. Some versions of a tube may be known for high gain, while others may have less gain and not sound as pleasant to a particular tester. With preamp tubes, feel free to purchase several different brands and experiment.
#7
Quote by ethan_hanus
Huh? No, that's not true. You can mix 12AX7's with 12AU7's and be perfectly fine, if the pins line up then you can put whatever preamp tube you want in there. Will it sound good, entirely depends on what tubes you put in.

Now, you cannot do this with power tubes, only with preamp tubes.


This is what I thought. Thank you sir
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#8
Quote by 311ZOSOVHJH
You'll be fine. I mix n match preamp tubes all the time. There are exceptions so check if not sure. What amp is this?


6260. I know u havnt messed with bugeras last I knew, but ill check
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#9
I've played the 6262, 1990, V22 and V5. I have not messed with preamp tubes in those amps. I'd consider getting 1 or 2 JJs, a Shuguang, Sovtek, Penta Labs and maybe a Tung Sol depending on what you are going for. How do you want to change your tone?

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#10
lol. nooooo. i meant you cannot use a super high gain tube throughout! sure, you can use all jj's.

like you cant use a high gain preamp tube in v1-v6

etc.
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#11
Quote by natehimself
lol. nooooo. i meant you cannot use a super high gain tube throughout! sure, you can use all jj's.

like you cant use a high gain preamp tube in v1-v6

etc.


wut?
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#13
Quote by natehimself
lol. nooooo. i meant you cannot use a super high gain tube throughout! sure, you can use all jj's.

like you cant use a high gain preamp tube in v1-v6

etc.


Huh? When my VK came stock, it had all JJ's in it, it's not uncommon for amps to have all JJ's or Electroharmonix tubes in them, just cause they are all the same brand doesn't mean you can't put the same exact brand in all positions.

I think what your getting confused is most people like a long plate tube in the phase inverter position because they tend to last longer.
#14
Quote by 311ZOSOVHJH
I've played the 6262, 1990, V22 and V5. I have not messed with preamp tubes in those amps. I'd consider getting 1 or 2 JJs, a Shuguang, Sovtek, Penta Labs and maybe a Tung Sol depending on what you are going for. How do you want to change your tone?

Dougstubes.com
Tubedepot.com
Thetubestore.com
Eurotubes.com


Woops guess I should've waited later to post in the bugera thread. Sry bout that haha
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#15
Like I said there Idk yet, but I was just approaching a retubing and wanted to check
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#16
You can mix power tubes. Some people run a set of KT66s and a set of EL34s or something like that. As long as the bias isn't too hot on any of the tubes, it'll work.
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#17
Quote by natehimself
lol. nooooo. i meant you cannot use a super high gain tube throughout! sure, you can use all jj's.

like you cant use a high gain preamp tube in v1-v6

etc.

To make it short: no.


TS, do what 311 said. Btw, Penta Labs tubes are just selected and rebranded Shuguangs, so I guess if you get a few Pentas, you won't need to get Suguangs, too. I have a bunch of Pentas by the way, liking them.
#18
as far as i know 12ax7's have a gain factor of ~100. i have heard them shipping within tolerance of ~95 to ~107 (you can buy hotter JJ's cuz eurotubes tests them and separates higher and lower values for special purchase, as i am sure more companies who perform a QA inspection do as well). a 12ax7 is also the highest gain dual triode i know of (of course i don't know them all, but i know quite a few), so i don't know what 'higher gain tubes' would be unless its a hot 12ax7 and i wouldn't worry about running a bunch of 107 gain 12ax7's in my preamp.

as far as i know, you can replace higher gain tubes with lower gain tubes in amplifiers, but it is not advisable to run them vise versa. so if your preamp has 2x12ax7's and 1x12at7 then you wouldn't just wanna replace them all with 12ax7's. from what i have heard the problem is not 'too much gain man', it's more to do with current draw. i have heard 12ax7's don't last as long with the current draw a 12at7 requires and has a shorter life because of it, evidently i have heard you can change a resistor value on one of the pins in order to keep the 12ax7 from getting burned out.

as far as i know, a power tube's designation implies it meets a particular spec (socket design, output pins, nominal specs) and as long as these tube meet specs of what you run, then they can be used. like, if you run a class A/B pushpull amp with a sylvania 6CA7 (it's an american EL34) and a mullard EL34, then as long as they are a 'matched set' (their outputs are close enough so they can be biased in push/pull) then you are good. in my class A, singled ended THD i son't worry about tolerances at all, i can run any 2 EL34-style power tubes together regardless on how the 'match' as a set (i can actually run any 2 type of tube together with the bivalve, i run a sylvania 6L6GC and a mullard EL34 now).

as far as i know, big amp makers tend to ship with one brand of vacuum tube (with the trend going toward 'rebranded' 3rd party tubes with the amp maker's company's logo on the tube). the reason for doing this is consistency, they want to know their product will be stocked when needed and going through 1 supplier is easier and more efficient for a number of reasons (supply chain, ordering, availability, cost for bulk buying).

thats just what i heard though
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Last edited by gumbilicious at Sep 29, 2010,
#19
Thanks to all again. I'm definitely learning some stuff haha.
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#20
To reiterate,

Yes, you can use any preamp tubes you want in your preamp, as long as they are preamp tubes. Don't try putting an EL84 in the preamp section.

12AX7s and 5751s are higher gain, 12AT7s and 12AU7s are low gain.
Call me Wes.
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#21
Quote by TheQuailman
To make it short: no.


TS, do what 311 said. Btw, Penta Labs tubes are just selected and rebranded Shuguangs, so I guess if you get a few Pentas, you won't need to get Suguangs, too. I have a bunch of Pentas by the way, liking them.



i was told this. i guess i'm wrong.
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#22
Yay for Gumbi's typical knowledge pwn.

TS: I'm a huge fan of Shuguang, Penta, and JJ preamp tubes. EHX are okay, but as far as my experience goes, they really depend on the amp.
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#23
In my book, the only modern preamp tubes that exist are Tungsol and JJ. I have never been able to get into Shuguangs or sovteks or brands like that.

Old stock tubes are the way to go though.
Call me Wes.
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Bad Cat Cougar 5
1957 Gibson GA-5
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#24
meh...
NOS tubes are great, but just too damn pricey (f'n FORGET NOS poweramp tubes... saw a few NOS KT88's go for over a grand not too long ago, EACH!)
+1 to Gum, do what you damn well please in your pre so long as you're not throwing powertubes in there. I like high gain-ers in V2, and V3, but that's my amp just make sure your PI is balanced.
+2 to Gum for pointing out that you CAN mix'n'match powertubes... under certain circumstances ofcourse (6L6GCs and KT88s are pretty sweet together IMO).
#26
Quote by darkarbiter7
In my book, the only modern preamp tubes that exist are Tungsol and JJ. I have never been able to get into Shuguangs or sovteks or brands like that.

Meh, depends. I like JJs in my Laney, but I tried some different tubes in a friend's AD30VT and the Shuguangs were a lot better than the JJs in that thing.

Strange enough, the preamp tube I liked most in my VJ was a Sovtek.


I got a pair of Telefunkens for free once. Do I win?
Last edited by TheQuailman at Sep 29, 2010,
#27
if the pins match up... this does not mean you can put in that tube in your 12AX7 slot. some pentodes have a 9-pin configuration, some rectifier tubes will match up too, but you cannot put it in there. so please don't.

putting a 12AU7 triode in the first gain stage might give you some problems with a few things. i'd put 12AX7 or similar high mu triode in the first. after, it won't matter much.

if your amp has a cathode follower, with a 12AX7, i suggest you leave a 12AX7 triode in that position. other tubes will give you some headaches.

as far as power tubes go, yes you can mismatch it, it has a "unique" effect with second degree distortion, but i've heard two poles. some say it's pleasant, and some say it's not that nice. you could try it i suppose.

for preamp tubes, you can go NOS if you can find some for under $15 (you can, most of the time.) if you're trying for 12AT7s and 12AU7s, it's even cheaper than NOS 12AX7s.

for power tubes, JJ is good, TungSol is good, and Shuguang (TAD) is good. especially the TAD branded Shuguang 6L6GC-STRs blew me away. it's great.
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#28
NOS tubes are the best. you can get tubes that test 80 percent of old spec for like 15-20 bucks each and they beat the pants off of new tubes.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#29
Duckmin: Free pair of Telefunkens? Yes, you do win. You win ^10
Call me Wes.
Gear:
Fender American Deluxe HSS Strat
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Bad Cat Cougar 5
1957 Gibson GA-5
Ceriatone 18w TMB Combo
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Various Ibanez TS9s
Weber MASS Attenuator
#30
To be fair, they were used. But they work and sound good, so I'm not one to complain.

I want some Mullards, but they go for crazy prices sometimes.
#31
Does nobody make reverse-engineered NOS tubes?

I mean, [clarkson]how hard can it be?[/clarkson]
Gear:
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- Jackson JS30
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#32
i was not expecting this thread to take off like this... haha. so what are mesa boogies tubes rebrands of? i know they are rebranded, just what? rubys?
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#34
I believe I got mine for like 30 bucks USD. Used, but it tests high. It's currently in the V1 slot in my CBB. It's the Miguel Cabrera (baseball player) of my tube lineup.
Call me Wes.
Gear:
Fender American Deluxe HSS Strat
Chicago Blues Box Roadhouse
Bad Cat Cougar 5
1957 Gibson GA-5
Ceriatone 18w TMB Combo
Hughes & Kettner Tube Factor
Various Ibanez TS9s
Weber MASS Attenuator
#35
Quote by dementiacaptain
i was not expecting this thread to take off like this... haha. so what are mesa boogies tubes rebrands of? i know they are rebranded, just what? rubys?
Pretty sure they're Groove tubes.
Quote by TheQuailman
Hard? Probably, but not impossibly so.

Expensive? That's more like it.
Yeah, I guess you'd need to wreck quite a few expensive NOS tubes to get started.
Gear:
- Bugera 333
- VJ & VJ cab
- Jackson JS30
- TS9

Bugera Users Militia. We are horrible people. With a sprinkler fetish.
~ BUM: For all things extinguishing

Rackmount Tube Amp Project <<< Updates!
#36
^Not even that, necessarily. I mean, there's no big secrects about construction here, right? The manufacturers got all the blueprints they could need, I guess. I figure it's more about the military-grade standards they had concerning choice of materials and qc back in the day. Tubes used to be srs bsns.

At least, that's my guess on the matter. I don't know for sure.


Quote by darkarbiter7
I believe I got mine for like 30 bucks USD. Used, but it tests high. It's currently in the V1 slot in my CBB. It's the Miguel Cabrera (baseball player) of my tube lineup.

A Mullard? Damn I want one for my V1, too. To tame the Laney a bit. It's got the 800-clone disease: ear piercing high frequencies when you're not careful.
Last edited by TheQuailman at Sep 29, 2010,
#37
Quote by dementiacaptain
6260. I know u havnt messed with bugeras last I knew, but ill check

Pretty harsh preamp tubes. I went Mesa 12ax7-a in v1,2and3 and it smoothed out the tone slightly.
#38
Quote by TheQuailman
^Not even that, necessarily. I mean, there's no big secrects about construction here, right? The manufacturers got all the blueprints they could need, I guess. I figure it's more about the military-grade standards they had concerning choice of materials and qc back in the day. Tubes used to be srs bsns.

At least, that's my guess on the matter. I don't know for sure.
I guess, but making them can't be more expensive than the NOS tubes that are selling for outrageous prices today.
Well, it's probably more complicated, I'm sure we would've seen it happen already otherwise.
Quote by kenfrazee@gmail
Pretty harsh preamp tubes. I went Mesa 12ax7-a in v1,2and3 and it smoothed out the tone slightly.
Some extra info: Bugeras come with selected/rebranded Shuguangs. Or at least they pretend to select them, because they put letters on them.
Gear:
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- VJ & VJ cab
- Jackson JS30
- TS9

Bugera Users Militia. We are horrible people. With a sprinkler fetish.
~ BUM: For all things extinguishing

Rackmount Tube Amp Project <<< Updates!
#39
the tubes made today are the same as old tubes just not mil-spec. also most of them hit the mark for gain at 100. Almost none of them hit the transconductance or voltage specs consistently. None of them hit the noise floor specs. Almost all of them have extra components to increase stability and decrease microphonics.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#40
So, in some ways they're better tech, but they're just crappily made?
Gear:
- Bugera 333
- VJ & VJ cab
- Jackson JS30
- TS9

Bugera Users Militia. We are horrible people. With a sprinkler fetish.
~ BUM: For all things extinguishing

Rackmount Tube Amp Project <<< Updates!
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