#1
Could anyone with experience with tube amps tell me how rectifiers affect the sound of an amp? I know there are solid state diodes and vacuum tube diodes. What is the difference and how do they affect my tone?
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#2
It's usually called "sag". I don't personally know what that means.
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#3
Rectifiers are not in the signal path, the convert the power from AC to DC. What they do effect is the attack/speed/response/tightness of the amp. It depends more on the circuit than whether it's tube rectified or ss rectified.

Typically, though, manufactures are more prone to use tube rectifiers in spongy/saggy response amps, and SS in tighter response amps. Not always the case, though, as it depends on the circuit.
#5
Quote by xxXshredderXxx
weird how dual rec's sound tighter than any amp ive ever heard...

You probably haven't heard too many amps then. No offense or anything, but Mesa Rectifiers really are one of the looser amps out there. The tightest amps you can get without boosts and mods are, in my opinion, VHT amplifiers. Not saying they sound the best, but on their own are by far the tightest amps you can get.

I'll leave your question up to a well respected amp designer TS.
Quote by Mike Soldano
An amp with a tube rectifier tends to sound much "spongier" in the bottom end. Low frequency notes take more current through the power tubes to reproduce. This increased current causes a voltage drop in the rectifier tube and the amp loses power. So, when more power is actually needed, the amp gives less. Because of this, a tube rectifier amp will sound spongy and more distorted at high volumes. This, probably more than anything, is what gives a vintage amp its sound and color.

A solid state rectifier has no internal resistance whatsoever. It has a very consistent fixed voltage drop that occurs whether there's no current or full current - approximately .7 volts. When an amplifier needs power at low frequencies, there will be no limit to the current that travels through the rectifier. This results in an amp with more headroom that is punchier, more articulate, and able to deliver the goods in the bottom end.

In my opinion, all amps should have solid state rectifiers. I don't believe there are any really good rectifier tubes on today's market and, even if there were, why use them? The technology is obsolete, they are horribly inefficient, and far more expensive and troublesome to build into an amp. These tubes, no matter how good, will routinely need replacing, adding to your maintenance expenses. Besides that, tube rectifiers kill the headroom of an amplifier. If you want that spongy, vintage sound, there are other ways to do it. I have successfully designed and built amps that have replicated that soggy bottom, vintage tube rectifier sound using solid state rectifiers and various circuit modifications.
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