Bigkidz, For 12AU7 I am using RCA regular tops(not clear) that I bought from member Terribleted in Canada for around $10. apiece .Much better than JJ.He also has Sylvania.
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Hello, I much prefer the GE 5 stars over the JAN 5814A's which came with my amp. I've tried about a dozen 12au7(5814a)tubes and my favorites are the GE 5814A USAF (United States Air Force) tubes. Not sure how hard they are to come by, and they have 2 mica vs the 3 mica that regular 5 stars have. Good luck.
I've accumulated a small collection of both 12AU7's (cd player) and 6922's (preamp). In my Cary 308T cd player, I've tried Mullard's 12AU7 (nice sound, rich but a little rolled off at the top or dark sounding), RCA 5814 Black tops (Very nice tube, lack dynamics though), Telefunken 12AU7's (Great tube, all around good balance, maybe a tad bright) and finally my favorite Amperex 7316 which is a substitute for 12AU7. The Amperex has the richness of the Mullard, the clarity of the RCA, and the top to bottom dynamics of the Tele. My 2 cents....
Call Andy at Vintage Tube Services. Be patient he'll answer and he's a great guy. Very informative. If you know what you want try Brendan at Tubeworld also.