#1
Right im thinking of getting some new tubes for my orange rocker 30.

Atm i think the amp sounds awesome i love the tone and such. Im really just wanting to experiment with higher end tubes, also so i just have a spare set.

First on my list i thought i could just buy a set like this:

http://www.watfordvalves.com/product_detail.asp?id=2263

But then i saw that it isnt actually a full set as rocker 30 uses 4 12ax7's and 2 el34's right?

Soo then i when about getting individual tubes such as these as power amp:

http://www.karltone.co.uk/svetlana-sed-winged-c-el34-106-p.asp

I can get a platinum matched pair apparently soo they will be match and should be all good strait outta the box.

And these as pre-amp:

http://www.karltone.co.uk/sovtek-12ax7-lps-104-p.asp

I could get 4 singles. Although it doesnt say anything about matching these soo im guessing that pre amp tubes dont need to be matched?

Question is.

Are the Harma ECC83 really 12ax7's just with a different name? Would be be better to buy the set i mentioned or buy the individual tubes?

If neither what tubes should i be looking at?
#2
ECC83 = 12AX7, yes.

Are you sure the Orange Rocker has 4 12AX7s? I don't have the amp, but sources are saying it takes three...

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#3
Hmm i may be wrong then. Ive only just got the amp. Maybe it has got 3 :S ill have to check when i get back to the amp. I just thought i saw somewhere say it takes 4.

Soo why do they have 2 different names for the same type of tube? If the amp does take 3 pre amp should i get the set or singles?
#4
Just get a set, that way they're all matched and specially selected and such.

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#5
ECC is the international standards designation. 12AX7 is an old proprietary designation. Americans have never been one for international standards so they kept using the original manufacturer's code. Elsewhere in the world a 12AX7 was called an ECC83.

Those tubes you linked to are excellent choices for the power amp.
For the preamp those Sovtek LPS are the better Sovteks. You could do worse. Try some JJ ECC803 and some ECC83S tubes as well.
Preamps tubes are where it is worthwhile chasing down NOS though.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
Last edited by Cathbard at Mar 11, 2012,
#6
Where can i get my hands on nos then? Im guessing this is a high end pre amp tube?

And by the way you've stated it they are no longer in production and hard to get hold of?

Also i noticed on the complete tube pack that they had a tube for the phase splitter? what is a phase splitter?
#7
NOS = New Old Stock. The old tubes from back in the day from Britain, Germany, Holland, and the US make any modern tube look like crap. There are a few places that sell them but most stores charge a fortune for them. I pick mine up mostly from Ebay, it's a bit of a gamble but as they last 10x longer than a modern tube and sound better doin git I find it's worth it.

The phase splitter is the driver for the power tubes. It's actually part of the power amp, not the preamp.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#8
Ok cheers cath. So what kinda nos tubes should i be looking for and what site can i get them from?

im not worried about spending a lil extra if they last 10x longer and sound better, i only need 3 anyway soo its not gonna be too bad.

Also will i need a different kind for the phase splitter to the other 2 pre amp tubes then?
#9
for NOS preamp tubes, two that are regarded as some of the best are telefunken and amperex.

i have a ribbed plate telefunken (rebranded as a fischer) in the sunn solarus i play thru and i am loving it. amperex bugle boys are good (havnt used one, so cant comment specifically, just going by reputation from here on) mullard, general electrics, JAN, phillips, and RCA would definitely be worth checking out.

12ax7 equivalents include:
ecc83/803/83s, as cath told you up there ^
7025
5751 (military version, 70-90% of the output of a regular 12ax7, stevie ray vaughan liked these.
12at7 lower gain than a normal 12ax7, less than the 5751 i believe.

so any of those should work fine without any mods to the amp.

if i were you id get a few different brands/types and experiment. changing V1 will have the most effect on your sound, so i would definitely get something nice for that position.
#10
Like I said, I buy old tubes from ebay. I've gotten a few microphonic ones but as I've paid no more than $20 each I've still come out in front. Some of the best scores have been ones that were rebranded. Helps to know what you are looking at because most people don't. They see United Electron and I see Brimar or Tungsram or whatever it actually is - so I bid and they don't.

I'll try to list the most common ones in order of goodness for you:
German: Telefunken, Siemens, RFT (if you want a dark tube)
Holland: Amperex (Bugle Boy)
Britain: Mullard, Brimar
Australia: Miniwatt (basically a Phillps/Mullard)
Hungary: Tungsram
USA: RCA, Phillips, Sylvania, Raytheon
India: BEL (a Mullard)
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#12
As for the phase inverter. Ideally it should be a balanced tube (there are two triodes inside the bottle, balanced means both operate the same) but it's over-rated. I just pick ones that sound about the same. I use an 18W Marshall to do that because each input connects to a different triode in V1. I just switch back and forwards between them using an A/B box until I find one that sounds about the same on both channels - that's close enough.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
Last edited by Cathbard at Mar 11, 2012,
#14
You don't need to match up preamp tubes. That doesn't seem expensive if they are good. Tubes made in the 50's that are still going strong are worth a fortune, especially things like Blackburn Mullards. I'd just watch the bidding and see if I could snipe them for a bit less.
You should be able to find something good a lot cheaper though. The go with NOS tubes is to be in no hurry and watch Ebay like a hawk. It can get quite addictive actually. Not everything you buy will be good but if you can score them for 10 or 20 quid it doesn't really matter in the long run.
Be very careful about Telefunkens. There are a lot of counterfeit Telefunkens out there. People take EI tubes which look the same, silk screen them as Tele's and then melt a diamond into the base.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
Last edited by Cathbard at Mar 12, 2012,