gold lion 12ax7 , au7

Has anyone out there heard the New Censor Gold Lion 12ax7 or the 12au7 yet ? How are they any different than the EH 12ax7 gold pins made by the same company for less money? I am using Gold Lion kt88s in my Rogue Audio m180s so the thought of an all Gold Lion tube compliment is intriguing, Any input would be appreciated !!! Thanks Chris
Yes. I recently installed matched and balanced (section-matched) pairs of both types (Genalex re-issue ECC82's and ECC83's) in my Chinese-made Paxthon VTA-160 amplifier, in which I also have a matched octet of SED "Winged C" EL34's. I have been very pleased with the results.

Previously the small signal tubes were a pair of used 1960's vintage Telefunken 12AX7's (which measured and performed well until one of them developed a problem, which prompted my purchase of the Gold Lion's), and a pair of NOS 1950's RCA 5963's (which had never been used, and measured well, but with a possibly significant mismatch between the two triode sections in each tube).

In comparison, the most major differences were that the Gold Lion's eliminated some congestion I had been sensing on high volume peaks, and provided lower noise levels.

I purchased them from, which optionally offers BOTH matching of tubes and matching of triode sections within each tube ("balancing"). The purchase worked out very conveniently, even though they are in Canada and I am in the USA.

I have no idea how they compare with the EH's.

Good luck!
-- Al
thanks Al, glad to know you have had a positive experience with these tubes, I think I will try them next, I have tried all kinds of NOS tubes with mixed results, and never been totally satisfied so far. thanks ,Chris
I am breaking in a quad of ECC82s in my ayon spirit. So far they are a little bright on top with a lack of soundstage depth compared to the RCA clear tops that came with the amp. I have around 20-25 hours on them.

FWIW I bought a quad of Shuguang Treasures and installed them in place of Genelex Gold Lion KT88s. The Gold Lions are great tubes, The Treasures are exceptional tubes in all respects.

Haven't tried the complete Gold Lion set of tubes though.
Hi Leatherneck1812,

I am very interested in your comparison between reissue Gold Lion 12AU7 and RCA Clear Top. I love the later for its "magic" midrange and rather good highs and bass.

Please continue to update us (me..) with the results.

Thank you in advance,

P.S. I did this comparison and I will share my results when you will report yours (to avoid any bias)
its all perspective, and it drives me crazy sometimes, I have RCA cleartops , bought them from rogue, the test well but are bright and edgy in my system. I dont like them at all.
Its all perspective, and it drives me crazy sometimes, I have RCA cleartops , bought them from rogue, the test well but are bright and edgy in my system. I dont like them at all.
I've been wondering if a factor that might contribute to the variability of different people's assessments of dual triodes (aside from the obvious variables of systems, rooms, music, listening biases, etc.) is the degree to which the two sections of particular tubes may have differing characteristics, and variations in the degree to which different circuit designs may be sensitive to that.

As I mentioned above, in the case of the absolutely NOS 1957 RCA 5963's that I had been using, while the different tubes were well matched to each other, there were significant mismatches in transconductance between sections. Different circuit applications, obviously, will have differing sensitivities to that.

As you saw, Chris, I had raised that question in this thread, in a post dated 8-25-2010. Kirkus provided an excellent technical response, but there was little empirical feedback.

Best regards,
-- Al
Thanks AL. I have been frustrated in the past with most nos tubes I have tried. When I first got into tubes the whole NOS thing was fun, but I just keep hearing different things than what most people were saying about them. alot of them were let downs, especially for the price of NOS. I have tried mullards, telefunkens, mazdas , GEs, 5751s, RCA cleartops, amperex , just to name a few, and none blew me away, and most sounded worse than the new production tubes I had on hand. It kinda bummed me out.
Another 12 hours on the Genelex ECC82s. They have really opened up. Soundstage is wide and deep. Texture, imaging, bloom, microdynamics in spades. Voices and instruments are extremely well seperated and background harmony blends so richly into the foreground. More air around instruments than I have ever had. The highs are still ever so slightly sharp after a few hours of listening, but I am hoping this will settle out with some more time.

Al, I had always had some slight crackles in female voices(congestion?) in a few passages on only a cpl of CDs. That is completely gone now.

For right now I am impressed with these tubes. PS: I am running them with the Black bottles not the Gold Lions

so the guys at tube depot said the gold lion 12ax7 is just a mullard reissue with gold pins, do you think this is true ?
Hi guys

I am writing from Melbourne,Australia.
Just to let you know the Gold Lion (Russian made copies of Genalex) are nothing else than a rip-off.(I have the 12AX7 tube)
Nothing different than a standard Sovtek LPS type, expensive and not worth the money.
I don’t know how come the company behind it is asking for so much money for no benefit at all.
I wouldn’t recommend the tubes to anyone else.
I use old Telefunkens (square bottom stamp) and you can’t beat them in sound quality.
The old Amperex is very good too,Simens gold pins.

Where did you get this info? It is a pretty strong claim.

Also, FWIW I haven't tried any of the Gold Lion 12AX7s, but I highly recommend the Psvane 12AX7. Did wonders in my little MiniWatt amp.
The Gold Lions, Mullards, EH and some other brand name new production tubes are made by New Sensor in the factory in St. Petersburg that used to, and still does, make Sovtek tubes.

I don't know what differences there are between the various brands coming out of this factory. I know that the Gold Lion KT88s are considered very good tubes.
The Psvane is an rebaged Golden Dragon 12AX7 gold pins.
No differences,same tube.
The only difference is you get the Psvane tubes in a nice looking box and pay twice the price.
I have both the Genalex 12AX7 re-issue and the Sovtek 12AX7LPS mentioned as being the same by a poster above.

In the phase splitter position in my Rogue Cronus they sound very different from one another. The Sovtek is tight and forward sounding with sharply emphasized leading edge transients. The Genalex is relaxed and warm albeit not particularly resolving.

I don't care much for either of them and yes, the Genalex is overpriced, but they sound nothing alike.
I'm thinking of trying the Gold Lion 12au7's in my Rogue RP-5
@aberyclark Please let me know your impressions of the Gold Lion 12au7's in the Rogue RP-5. I have been thinking about trying those in my RP-5 as well but haven't pulled the trigger yet.
If you can find some NOS British Mullard 12au7's from late 50's to early 60's, they sound good too.