Telefunkin. With out a doubt the best 12AX7.
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Jason is right. Telefunken will do the job nicely. Should you go hunting on ebay look also under ECC83 Telefunken. If lucky, you will find German sellers, who are usually reliable and still have good merchandise. NOS Telefunkens are rare and very costly. But if you are offered old ones with good measurements I would grab them. They are built to last, even in difficult circuits, which the Paragon is not to my knowledge.
I also agree with the Telefunkin choice! I replaced a pair of RCA's with the "Telly's" and the result was amazing! (I use a pair of 12AU7's...or ECC 82'S...as in your other post, Nealvito). More air, deeper and tighter bass, and a 3-D holographic soundstage. Andy at Vintage Tube Services got a batch of these tubes last month (12AU7's) and they're going quickly. His phone # is: 616-454-3467. I prefer paying extra for his expertise and custom matching rather that taking a "crap shoot" on ebay from an unknown source. Happy Tunes! Mike
I'll back Mike up on Andy at Vintage Tube Services, if you want the best then don't be afraid to pay a little extra for it. Andy is a man of his word and will never sell anyone bad merchandise. I got my Telefunkin 12AX7's from him along with a pair of Tungsol 5687's for the late 50's for my Sonic Frontiers Power 2 SE. Jason
Wrong, Fatparrot, the tubes ARE the sole gain devices for this player. In fact, they impart a controlling influence on the sound of my otherwise colorless reference system.
There are many audiophiles who will spare no expense for whatever is a hot commodity, like pricey tubes. I just settle for glorious music.
There are even more who buy such tubes in hopes of rescuing their aurally "gifted" component chain. A futile move, in my experience.
Telefunken ECC83/12AX7, are good. But so are Amperex Bugle Boys, Mullard CV4004, and for that matter, Sylvania Black Plate 12AX7's. They're just different sounding. In the right system, to the right tastes, all of them will produce magic. Telefunkens, are smooth, rich, warm tubes, with a rounded bass. Amperex, are robust, dynamic tubes, with an excellent bass. The Sylvania's are lively, not as rich sounding, tubes. So only with system, and personal tastes matching, will you acheive, the magic, you are looking for.
I agree with Fletchj and Detlof, it really depends on your taste and the circuit it's used in. The best 12AX7s I've found for my taste in Jadis equipment have been Telefunkens, and the best Tele's I've ever used are their premium E803CCs. Much quieter than the standard 12AX7s, and they last forever.