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Discussion Starter #1
How much effect do tubes have on tone compared to the rest of the circuitry on tube amps?

I went down to GC today and played the valveking, and it sounded like shit. i sat there for like a half hour thinking i was setting it up wrong but just couldnt get a good sound. i also played on a eqnator tourmaster and peavey 50/212 that sounded awesome, but are much more expensive. what im getting to is, can i get a good sound if i buy a valveking then swap out the tubes? i dont want to invest in one then change the tubes and still end up with a sound i dont like.

also, the tourmaster had wattage control, how much effect does that have on the overall lifespan of the tubes? i practice 2-4 hours a day, sometimes way more. i dont need that much power all the time.
 

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It'll not be a complete tonal shift with tube changes, more of a refinement of the current tone. You'll find that characteristics of the amp will change, but it'll still have its original voicing. Think of it like changing the pickups on a guitar, it'll change the tone to a point, but its still the same hunk of wood its attached to.

If the Valveking sounded like shit to you, you are unlikely to change it drastically with tube changes.
 

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Dream Crusher
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It's more like changing strings than changing pickups. Pickups can totally change the character of a guitar, strings/tubes less so.
 

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Habitual Line Stepper
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I'm regular as fuck. You could set an atomic clock to my bowel movements.
It is true. We are actually on the same poop cycle. Just like women. It gets messy sometimes at my place as there is only one washroom. We almost have it down.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It's more like changing strings than changing pickups.
it definitely wasnt the strings. i tried them both with a tele and a hellraiser w/ EMG's with same result.

had another idea - maybe it sounded bad cause the tubes on the floor model are going bad or something?
 

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Dream Crusher
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What I meant was that swapping tubes on an amp is like swapping strings on a guitar. You can get the occasional bad string (tube) and it's not gonna outright change the tone, only modify it slightly.
 

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Is Actually Recording
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it definitely wasnt the strings. i tried them both with a tele and a hellraiser w/ EMG's with same result.

had another idea - maybe it sounded bad cause the tubes on the floor model are going bad or something?
No - his point was that the amount of change in tone you'll get from a tube swap in an amp is about what you'd expect on a guitar if you changed its strings - it'll still sound like the same guitar, just it'll be subtly different.

Odds are, if you don't like the amp, you just don't like how it's voiced, and it's not the tubes. What was it that you liked about the other two, compared to the Valveking?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
ah, ok i see what you mean. looks like ill have to save up for something nice.

the lead channels on both the high end ones had that warm distortion feeling, the tourmaster specifically on 'modern' distortion setting. the tourmaster also sounded great on the clean channels. the valveking just sounded.. bad, i dont know. i read a lot of reviews and i can see why people are saying it needs a distortion pedal for metal - but it should have good tone to begin with. i guess i expected more just because its a tube amp.
 

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Dream Crusher
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Tube does not automatically mean awesome.

And especially for metal, you will probably end up using a Tubescreamer or other clean boost to drive the front end and 'tighten' up the amp's response a bit.
 

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Usually at a music store like GC the VK is either the combo, or a head attached to a matching cab. Either way, the speakers suck dog shit through a straw. Try it with another cab and then see what you think. Peavey speakers are crap to begin with, but the VK speakers are even worse.

As for tubes, they already come with JJ's and/or Ruby tubes. I doubt you're going to see significant improvement from a tube swap. If you do not like it after trying it with different speakers, you won't like it after a tube swap either.

I found using an SD-1 instead of the built in boost sounds way better. I've also heard throwing a 10-band EQ in the loop really improves things too, though I never tried that.

However I did tire of the tone eventually, and it definitely sounded farty at higher volumes. I then went to a JSX. Then the DC I have now.
 

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I've heard the analogy that tubes are like tires on a car. You can get a Corvette, but if you get $100 tires for it, you may as well have gotten a Cavalier.
 

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Guiterrorizer
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Not all tube amps are created equal.

What's your budget, and what sounds are you going for, and what is your current rig + settings?
 

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Leon said:
I've heard the analogy that tubes are like tires on a car. You can get a Corvette, but if you get $100 tires for it, you may as well have gotten a Cavalier.
You can also buy $300 tires for a Hyundai, and it's just a fucking Hyundai! :lol:
 

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You can also buy $300 tires for a Hyundai, and it's just a fucking Hyundai! :lol:
You, sir, are wise :yoda:
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
hmm jeff.. when u said that i realized the peavey equip ive always had good experience with is my PA and mixer - nothing w speaker in it. Ill def give that a try.

Getting mixed answers on the tubes tho.. is there anyone whos actually tried valveking with good tubes/speakers compared to stock? the stock power tubes are '6L6GC'

with the pedals.. i know some people will disagree, but if i cant get a good clean or distorted sound out to begin with, i dont feel like its worth building upon. thats what i do with my shit rig now.

atm im playing a marshall 15w combo, entrylvl fx (too ashamed to post fx models) and warlock bronze. got a BC Rich ASM pro coming in the mail and im about to update everything else. i want my amp to sound good clean or with metal, and anything in between. the tourmaster did that fine without any fx and on pretty much any guitar.
 
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