Nagra VPA 845 retubing

Hi. I have a pair of Nagra VPA monoblocks with 845 tubes. I bought these used. When I contacted a local dealer I was told that I should only buy tubes from Nagra, because Nagra supposedly ensures that they are perfectly matched and are fully compatible with the amps (they costs 900 a pair!). Is this true, or is this a racket? Has anyone tried other matched 845 tubes than those sold by Nagra? If so, any preferences? Thanks
Hi I don't have Nagra VPA's, but I do have a Nagra PLL and VPS. They do heavily test their tubes and warranty them. Not all 845's also are perfectly to the same specs and could possibly cause a issue. Those are GREAT amps, I've heard them lot's at my dealers...I spend the $$''s not a racket.

I agree it's a little pricey...but you also don't have to worry a about a bad tube and matching is important in balanced you VPA's

Out of curiosity, what preamp are you using with them?
$900/pr for current production 845 tubes is a lot of money. What make are the Nagra supplied tubes?
my dealer said the VPA need tight specs tubes so to work properly and flavorly with their amps. he come across one of his customers whom send back VPA for repair and was inform by Nagra that his customer had used third party tubes and cause certain part of tube rectifing circuits to burn out gradually.
Online prices range from approx USD 95 for a single tube to 950 or so for a pair depending on the brand etc. Nagra prices don't appear to be unreasonable .
All the best
Nagra at one time used KR Audio 845 which retail in the 900/pr range but I thought Nagra dropped them due to reliability issues and started using Chinese sourced 845.

Which version of the VPA do you own? Does it have the built in tube protection circuit?
Philipwu, I believe that was true with the first generation VPA and especially with KR Tubes. Nagra later fix this problem in the second gerneration VPA which allowed for a wider variance of 845 to be used.
Thanks for all of your replies. Very useful. Considering your inputs I think that the wise choice would be to buy tubes from Nagra.

My VPAs are old, but they're not the first generation: they have on the front panel the button that you can press to set bias. I suspect that they are second generation (end of the 1990 or early 2000 I think). They only have XLR connectors. I sent a note tonight to Nagra to check if there was a way to date them.

Interestingly one of my friends has a newer generation (with both RCA and XLR connections). We never compared them side by side but everyone that has heard those two pairs of amps seem to think that the older ones (mine) sound better.

BTW, do you have any opinion with regards to tube? You replace them after how many hours of use?
according to my dealer, he said tubes start deteriorating from 3000hrs onwards if you are using Nagra tubes. You would hear noticeable differences from 5000hrs onwards. Best is to use their own tubes because they(Nagra) will buy and burn-in all tubes for 24hrs then throw away those which dies off. Tubes that survive the burn-stress test will go through tube tester to discard those out of specs.. and further match & pair individually. That's the labor & quality involve.