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Old 02-07-2013, 12:10 AM   #1
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How much better are NOS tubes?

Hey guys!

I've been wanting to upgrade to a new cab for awhile now, but I'm not sure I'm gonna have the funds anytime soon. And since I've always got the itch to play with my tone I've been contemplating NOS tubes.

I'd like to try a JAN 5751 since they're somewhat affordable, but I'm wondering if I'll really notice a difference over the JJs I have. Currently I've got a JJ 5751 in V1, JJ 12AX7s in V2-4, and a JJ 12at7 in V5. It sounds pretty darn good right now. What do you think? Any reason to upgrade any of those?

Oh, and I've got JJ 6L6s for my two power tubes.
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Old 02-07-2013, 12:34 AM   #2
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You'll notice a difference. Just swap out V1. You'll notice a difference between pretty much any two tubes in V1.

The good thing about cheap-ish NOS like the JAN 5751 is that even if you don't think they sound a lot better (though you probably will) the difference in tube life alone is worth the extra cash.

Try something new

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Old 02-07-2013, 01:46 AM   #3
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I honestly thought there was a pretty big change. i went from JJ's to a Nos tesla in V1 of my matchless and it definately made a difference. for the better. a lot more clarity and just sounded sweeter.

plus it should last a while. and i have a second once that is gone.

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Old 02-07-2013, 09:39 AM   #4
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Cool guys -- I might have to spring for one. I'm really a big fan of what 5751s do in V1, it would be nice to try an even higher quality one like a JAN Phillips or Mullard.
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Old 02-07-2013, 06:50 PM   #5
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JJs are great tubes, but as good as they sound, they can't quite match up to the classic Mullards, Amperexes, Telefunkens, RCAs, etc etc. Of course, you can sink tons of cash into those brands quickly, even if you're just getting them off ebay like I did. And Roc is right on tube life. Depending on how much you can spend, buying NOS tubes over new ones can almost pay for itself over time due to longer tube life. There's a reason people spend money on those classic tubes; they just sound better.

Just FYI if you see any Mullard 5751s, they're most likely just GE 5751s rebranded. Still good tubes. The Philips JAN 5751s have the best reputation, but RCA also made some good ones. I've been meaning to get my hands on some of GE's blackplate 3-mica version, since they also carry a good reputation.
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Old 02-08-2013, 12:14 AM   #6
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Btw, Phillips owned Mullard. I am yet to find a bad Phillips/Mullard regardless of where it was made. They were made all over the world, in the US they were just called Phillips. Australian ones were Miniwatt, Indian ones were BEL, British ones were Mullard and there were others. They were all good.
This excludes Russian ones because they aren't made by Phillips, New Sensor just bought the name.
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