Which 12ax7 tubes sound the heaviest?
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Thread: Which 12ax7 tubes sound the heaviest?

  1. #1


    Join Date: Oct 2016
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    Which 12ax7 tubes sound the heaviest?

    Going to swap the preamp tubes in my Jet City JCA22h and canít decide between JJs or Tungsols or (insert whatever isnít on my radar yet).

    Which do you think would add the best low end and grind?
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  3. #2


    Join Date: Sep 2008
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    Honestly I spent years spending hundreds of dollars on tubes, and I don't really notice much in the way of any difference across all the tube amps I've owned. Probably notice the most difference in longevity, I found JJs were the least reliable, but some amps like different tubes, probably has to do with tolerances for voltages in some amps or something.

    Tone wise I don't think you can go wrong with any of the big name brands.

  4. #3


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    You might want to take a look at some high gain JJ. They work great, IMO. Otherwise Tung-Sol is always a great choice.

    https://www.thetubestore.com/12ax7-tube-reviews

    https://tubedepot.com/products/jj-ec...mp-vacuum-tube
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  6. #4


    Join Date: Sep 2008
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    Tung Sol. No other choice.

  7. #5


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    I'm a fan of the TungSol in V1, and Penta/Shugang in V2/V3. Not sure how much difference it would make in V4 in that amp, but the cathode follower spots are very important in the SLO/Recto/5150 stack.

  8. #6


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    The JJs are made by another company and re-labeled I think, so watch for that. I have heard the Russian made tubes are better quality and last longer FWIW
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  9. #7


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    Quote Originally Posted by bigdave View Post
    The JJs are made by another company and re-labeled I think, so watch for that. I have heard the Russian made tubes are better quality and last longer FWIW
    Mesa for the longest time would tell you not to use Russian tubes in the cathode follower spots since they didn't handle the strain, but that seems to have changed recently.

  10. #8


    Join Date: Oct 2016
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    I put a set of Sovteks in the power slots, but the only noticeable difference is I feel better that the tubes don’t say “made in China”. Not that I expected anything more than that.

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