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Vacuum Tubes - Page 2
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Thread: Vacuum Tubes

  1. #11
    Mentor cga's Avatar
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    Re: Vacuum Tubes



    *Could be psychological, could be elitism, could be lotsa things, but they DO have a "warmer" sound, more intimate- I dunno why. *BTW, getting replacement tubes is difficult, the biggest manufactuing country at this point is the former Soviet Union, 'cause they were still using them when the government fell.
    Actually, there are many tube suppliers available and the common tube types, like EL34, KT88, 6BQ7 and so on are relatively cheap. The 300B triode is being manufactured right in the USA. Heck, Radio Shack has a warehouse in Texas with millions of tubes. You can order them from any of their stores, even though most of the sales droids don't know that.


  2. #12
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    stryder144's Avatar
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    Re: Vacuum Tubes

    Sigh...I love tube amplification. There have been great strides made in analog emulation from solid-state recording equipment, but it isn't the same. The generally hand-made analog components (a sweet Marshall stack [60's] for instance) had a beautiful sound.

    I would love to have an tube amplified home stereo system but that may take awhile to get together. Plus the cost is prohibitive.

  3. #13
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    Re: Vacuum Tubes




    Have you even heard a good tube based audio rig? *

    I'll grant you that it does not sound like MP3s squeaking out of little plastic speakers... :P

    Gee, you've hurt my feelings.... :'(
    Yes, I have a very audiophil friend, he has all sort of audio stuff. Including a really good tube based system, I agree the sound is warm, but also fuzzy. I just like his DTS system better, and that was at less than half the price. We even build the bass amp from scratch... 400 Watts baby ! very crispy, also the speakers are build from scratch, good tools, good craftmanship, good components... good sound. We can play very loudly with that rig... When we are in the mood we are the plague of the neighborhood... Watching "The Matrix" on DVD with sound on his rig is down right scary !!!

    MP3... I like the sound of +256 KBit/s on those it's REALLY hard to tell the difference between CD and compressed sound. Impossible on my stereo, hard on his rig !

  4. #14
    Mentor cga's Avatar
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    Re: Vacuum Tubes


    Sigh...I love tube amplification. There have been great strides made in analog emulation from solid-state recording equipment, but it isn't the same. The generally hand-made analog components (a sweet Marshall stack [60's] for instance) had a beautiful sound.

    I would love to have an tube amplified home stereo system but that may take awhile to get together. Plus the cost is prohibitive.
    Really, tube gear does not have to be expensive. There certainly are some very pricy tube components, but there are also some very good, inexpensive ones as well. I'm looking into a set of amps from Antique Sound Labs that sell for ~$200.00.


  5. #15
    Mentor cga's Avatar
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    Re: Vacuum Tubes

    I think we have a difference in what we value in sound. I am not into loud as much as I am into a certain "rightness" of tone. I have heard many high watt systems that could not match the tone of a simple system using triode tubes and mustering less than ten watts of power, especially into high efficency speakers.

    I am not really into the "home theater" thing. I have a nice TV and DVD player and a good pair of speakers for watching movies. But my main hifi is a whole different ball of freaky wax.


    Yes, I have a very audiophil friend, he has all sort of audio stuff. Including a really good tube based system, I agree the sound is warm, but also fuzzy. I just like his DTS system better, and that was at less than half the price. We even build the bass amp from scratch... 400 Watts baby ! very crispy, also the speakers are build from scratch, good tools, good craftmanship, good components... good sound. We can play very loudly with that rig... When we are in the mood we are the plague of the neighborhood... Watching "The Matrix" on DVD with sound on his rig is down right scary !!!

    MP3... I like the sound of +256 KBit/s on those it's REALLY hard to tell the difference between CD and compressed sound. Impossible on my stereo, hard on his rig !

  6. #16

    Re: Vacuum Tubes


    I think we have a difference in what we value in sound. I am not into loud as much as I am into a certain "rightness" of tone. I have heard many high watt systems that could not match the tone of a simple system using triode tubes and mustering less than ten watts of power, especially into high efficency speakers.
    I must agree with this. I hate it when people buy loud or bassy speakers for their automobile but they sound like crap. My friend had a pair of decent woofers and some horn tweeters for his truck. It might have sounded decent if there was a little MIDRANGE! And the tweeters faced your ears so you could hear that ear-piercing treble. I hate that. My car speakers suck, I won't deny, but I didn't spend anything on them. My home speakers are a pair of Bose. For 100 watt speakers, they're pretty awesome. They may not be the loudest in the world and may not be the bassiest but they do have a nice sound. It's a really nice balance of different frequencies. It's the kind of sound that doesn't bother your ears as much when you crank it up and shake the walls (which I rarely get to do because I'm hardly home alone). These kinds of speakers are worth spending the extra money on if you have it. And amplifiers can be the same. I guess this is the kind of thing you're talking about when you say tube amps are better.

  7. #17

    Re: Vacuum Tubes

    ah. the vacuum tube. another nikola tesla invention.

  8. #18
    Mentor cga's Avatar
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    Re: Vacuum Tubes




    I must agree with this. I hate it when people buy loud or bassy speakers for their automobile but they sound like crap. My friend had a pair of decent woofers and some horn tweeters for his truck. It might have sounded decent if there was a little MIDRANGE! And the tweeters faced your ears so you could hear that ear-piercing treble. I hate that. My car speakers suck, I won't deny, but I didn't spend anything on them. My home speakers are a pair of Bose. For 100 watt speakers, they're pretty awesome. They may not be the loudest in the world and may not be the bassiest but they do have a nice sound. It's a really nice balance of different frequencies. It's the kind of sound that doesn't bother your ears as much when you crank it up and shake the walls (which I rarely get to do because I'm hardly home alone). These kinds of speakers are worth spending the extra money on if you have it. And amplifiers can be the same. I guess this is the kind of thing you're talking about when you say tube amps are better.
    Yes, I think you've got it.

    Bose does have some nice designs utilizing full range drivers and some very inovative enclosures. The whole single driver speaker model is another area that I an starting to get into. It is a somewhat primitive concept, yet well implement speakers using quality full range drives do have a certain "magic" sound, particularly when powered by little tube amps.

    As to better sounding, that is my opinion. I think I would avoid a blanket statement such as "tube amps are better". It is quite subjective.

  9. #19

    Re: Vacuum Tubes

    You guys are right. *Quality IS more important than volume. *I just sold an ORIGINAL *pair of Ohm Model F speakers. *I waited 30 years to own them, but I only kept them for 2 years. *Reason? *After a lifetime working in a VERY noisy environment (a machine shop) about all I have left is mid-range in my hearing. *I figured it would be better if a collector had them. *At least I can say I once owned speakers that were the envy of the world when they were new. *Right now, I have a pair of nice, efficent Cerwin-Vegas that are driven by my 85 WPC Harmon-Kardon pro-logic reciever. *DVDs sound pretty good.

  10. #20
    Mentor cga's Avatar
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    Re: Vacuum Tubes

    http://www.thetubestore.com

    This is a cool place. Check out the difference in cost between, say, the Western Electric 300B and the EL34 or other, small power tubes like 6BQ5 or PCL82.

    The 300B is one of the audiophile darling tubes. Sheesh!




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