#1
Hi I'm looking at a new amp, tube preferably, and i was just wondering is there any real benefit to having more tubes or is that just a way of making the amp "seem" better? thanks for the help.
#2
More tubes generally equal more watts.

EDIT: To expand, generally speaking, 50 watt amps have 2 power tubes, 100 watt - 4 power tubes, 150 watt - 6 power tubes, etc. They will have at least the same amount of preamp tubes, but could also have rectifier tubes or reverb tubes.

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Last edited by TNfootballfan62 at Feb 23, 2007,
#3
so, would there be a difference in a 300 watt amp with 3 tubes, than a 300 watt amp with 4 tubes?
#4
it definitly affects the tone of the amp and helps with wattage. There are great heads, like the uni valve, that uses...one tube. It all depends on what you are looking for as far as tone, you might want less watts!

you should really start to go around and play a lot of different types of tube amps. See how a single channel tube amp sounds different than a triple rectifier, hear different cabs, different speakers...and decide on what you want and do it up. To a point, in tub amps especially, price is a matter of features and name. Take Jack White for example, he uses silvertone amps, sears brand...someone i know just got one for 400 bucks. I got my vox head for 900 brand new, and its great. I guess, in short, buy whats right for you, buy what you want and what you need, more tubes dont equal Better or Worse, nor is it trying to make itself look better or worse, its just what it is.
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#5
^You've seen a 300 watt amp with only 3 or 4 tubes?
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Just so you know, I read everything you type in a Mike Rowe from Dirty Jobs voice.

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#7
oh, well bass is different.

and if the preamp-poweramp ratio leans towards the poweramp side (more poweramp tubes) it'll be higher gain since the preamp tubes are driven harder.
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#8
I don't know much of anything about bass amps.
Feel free to call me Kyle.

Quote by ibz_bucket
Just so you know, I read everything you type in a Mike Rowe from Dirty Jobs voice.

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I mean in Kyle's case, it is in the best interest of mankind that he impregnate anything that looks at him funny...
#9
Quote by TNfootballfan62
More tubes generally equal more watts.

EDIT: To expand, generally speaking, 50 watt amps have 2 power tubes, 100 watt - 4 power tubes, 150 watt - 6 power tubes, etc. They will have at least the same amount of preamp tubes, but could also have rectifier tubes or reverb tubes.


What is a rectifier, mesa/boogie seems to make mostly rectifier amps, so that's why I'm asking.
#10
A rectifier is the circuit by which an amp turns AC power into DC power to run the circuit. All tube amps have them. Most of them use solid state rectifiers - more power transferred and no chance of burning out during normal function like with a tube rectifier. Boogie Dual Recto and Triple Recto amps have the option of tube or solid state rectification, whereas the Single Recto only has solid state.
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#11
^

Just to prevent confusion, you heard him correctly, "all-tube" amps CAN have solid state rectifiers, and usually do.
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#12
Tubes can get very specific when it comes to the nuances. Generally your tone comes from the larger preamp tubes, while the distortion comes from the power amp tubes.

preamp
EL-34 are used in marshalls, peavey, vox(I think, but don't quote me) rock sound.
EL-84 used in classic rock/blues such as fender, crate vintage sound

most power amp tubes are 12ax7

Most of your sound beyond that is where it's made, russian tends to break up quicker while american holds until the end.
#13
^ Actually, you have that backwards and you're wrong. Heh.

Vox are primarily EL84s. Marshalls are the famous EL-34 amps, although some use 6L6s. Fenders primarily use 6L6s now, while many vintage Fenders use 6V6s. Mesa/Boogie primarily uses 6L6s, but also have amps that either can handle or primarily use 6V6s, EL84s, and EL34s. As far as Peavey, who cares...

12AX7 are preamp tubes, but you're right that most amps have these. They create the most preamp distortion and bright cleans. They're also known as ECC83 tubes. Every other type of preamp tube will have less distortion and a more vintage type of clean.
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Last edited by Dirk Gently at Feb 23, 2007,
#14
Quote by Dirk Gently
^ Actually, you have that backwards and you're wrong. Heh.

Vox are primarily EL84s. Marshalls are the famous EL-34 amps, although some use 6L6s. Fenders primarily use 6L6s now, while many vintage Fenders use 6V6s. Mesa/Boogie primarily uses 6L6s, but also have amps that either can handle or primarily use 6V6s, EL84s, and EL34s. As far as Peavey, who cares...

12AX7 are preamp tubes, but you're right that most amps have these. They create the most preamp distortion and bright cleans. They're also known as ECC83 tubes. Every other type of preamp tube will have less distortion and a more vintage type of clean.


I am just getting into tubes, and like I said, I was iffy on the Vox's. Fenders use 6V6's now? I could have sworn they were EL-84's, the blues jr.'s are, I'm pretty sure.

You'll also need to school me on 6l6 and 6V6's, I havn't seen too much on them.
#15
Quote by Dirk Gently
^ Actually, you have that backwards and you're wrong. Heh.

Vox are primarily EL84s. Marshalls are the famous EL-34 amps, although some use 6L6s. Fenders primarily use 6L6s now, while many vintage Fenders use 6V6s. Mesa/Boogie primarily uses 6L6s, but also have amps that either can handle or primarily use 6V6s, EL84s, and EL34s. As far as Peavey, who cares...

12AX7 are preamp tubes, but you're right that most amps have these. They create the most preamp distortion and bright cleans. They're also known as ECC83 tubes. Every other type of preamp tube will have less distortion and a more vintage type of clean.


I am just getting into tubes, and like I said, I was iffy on the Vox's. Fenders use 6V6's now? I could have sworn they were EL-84's, the blues jr.'s are, I'm pretty sure.

You'll also need to school me on 6l6 and 6V6's, I havn't seen too much on them.
#16
^ No, vintage Fenders use 6V6s. They're a low-power tube like EL84s. Blues Jr. does use EL84, but that's because it's a small, low-power amp. If you get into a Twin or Hot Rod, then you'll start seeing 6L6s.

Not all tubes consume the same power (which is what watts actually rates - power consumption, not output, but there is a direct general correlation between power consumption and output power). EL84s and 6V6s are very low power tubes - that's why you can 4 of them and only 30 watts total power consumption. On the other hand, EL34s and 6L6s are high power tubes, basically consuming 25 watts of power per tube. That's why 50 watt Mesa/Boogie amps will only have 2 6L6s, or a 100 watt Marshall stack will have 4 EL34s.

As far as sound differences, check out www.tubestore.com It gives a lot of good introductory general tube info.
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#17
Just to confuse things even more the Marshall DSL401's used EL84's too, the heads didn't though.
#18
^ And the JCM 900s use 6L6s. I was just painting in broad strokes for him
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