Fist off , I’m a strong advocate of premium NOS driver tubes . Yes they are expensive, but they’re a long living tube and worth the investment. I must disagree with the “ JJ “ crowd , as my Rogue pre amp came with JJ 12AU7’s . I tried numerous tubes , with RCA being the best domestic and Telefunkens bettering everything I tried . I haven’t owned your particular amp , but I’d speculate that in a 3 driver tube configuration, your middle tube will influence the sound significantly more than the other 2. That’s how it works in amps like Bob Latinos. The sound is all based on system synergy , room character , and your taste . So you have driver tubes , power tubes and a reciter tube . Your driver tube(s) will have the biggest change in tonality . Your power tubes will matter in accordance with what speaker you have . Now I have about 10 different driver tubes , Including RCA, Seimens silver plate and CCa, Tekefunken Tektronix, G73-R, and standard, PHILLIPS, EI , and I can keep going . Now as for power tubes I have new production JJ, Gold Lion, Tung Sol and the Psvane Ti. NOS power tubes GEC KT88 and KT 66, Tungsol 6550 3 hole , and SED Winged C . And about 6-7 reciter tubes , mostly NOS . So here’s my recommendation. Driver tubes on a budget , Tungsram NOS , Or Tesla ( nos ) . Telefunkens are the best . I’ve tried nos Mullard and it’s like throwing a blanket over my speakers . The sonic signature of all drives tubes is perfectly described on Brent Jesses site. Then for power tubes, new production Gold Lions are the overall best at providing a flat response and still provide good bass . In my system they are only bettered overall by KT -120’s and SED Winged C’s . The higher level Psvane Ti’s are too bright . Now with your rectifier tube , it’s important to see what your amp can accommodate. Mine will handle many . I have all of the good ones except a NOS GE 274b. I prefer a 5U4GB over the higher voltage 5AR4, as it smooths out my system . So for you a modern Gold Lion or a vintage RCA or TungSol coke bottle if it’s compatible with your amp . About 15 years ago, when I got back into tubes, I had an Antique Sound Labs 30 Wpc integrated that had a SS power supply . I went with Tungsram drivers and Svetlana ( SED ) winged C EL34’s and the sound quality improvement was substantial. So junk any cheap Chinese tubes , skip over JJ’s and go to something that you can live with . Happy hunting , Mike .
- 33 posts total
- 33 posts total