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Old 31st January 2003, 09:44 PM   #1
jaybird is offline jaybird  United States
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Question solid state or tube?

I was wanting to know which is more reliable, and which one gets you more bang for your buck?
Any comments are welcome.
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Old 31st January 2003, 10:29 PM   #2
JoeBob is offline JoeBob  Canada
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Tubes themselves cost more, use OPTs, almost always use high value chokes in the PSU, high voltage caps cost more than low voltage caps, so usually end up costing more. As for if these higher costs are worthwhile it's up to you.

But I'd have to say that SS provides more bang for the buck.
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Old 31st January 2003, 10:37 PM   #3
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Yeah, SS, for next to nothing (with abit of bin scabbing) you could make a fairly high power amplifier... OR, even better, go to all your local electronics repair shops, and ask for old amplifiers.... They may have older ones that have a blown transformer that a suitable replacement would be too hard for them to locate... then, you have a complete amp (that needs just a transforemer) or a very nice amplifier case..
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Old 1st February 2003, 02:26 AM   #4
Jeff R is offline Jeff R  United States
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No doubt, well designed SS amplifiers are far more reliable. My Leach Amp is still going after more than 20 years. Tubes wear out and, with their higher heat, can speed up the aging of other components.

Also, top line transistors are far less expensive than tubes, and SS amps don't big, honking output transformers.
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Old 1st February 2003, 06:39 AM   #5
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Default Electron tubes?

I think I was born about 40 years late. I like tubes, I like heavy, gnarly transformers, Nixie tubes, slide rules, fabric-wrapped wire, and inductors. LPs are wicked cool, carburetors, breaker point ignitions, leather jackets, and the venerable Zippo, and lots of chrome too- I just love it all!

And if I could afford it, I'd love to build an amplifier with a pair of 3,800 watt heater RCA 5671 triodes on the output. Something freaky about a pair of 250 pound vacuum tubes just gets me going.

It's the kind of project Kent would probably like to try.

Oh well, on the serious side of things, the venerable vacuum tube is ideal for the low level signal, or the driver side of a power amplifier. For the power stage, go MOSFET. That is, unless you have a pair of efficient speakers...

Transistors are ideal for low impedance loads. I think they are absolutely perfect in terms of durability and sonics. When it comes to multiple drivers, or inefficient speakers, transistors are wonderful things.

Well, I learned properly implemented solid state design is capable of in the mid-80s, listening to a FET-10 and phono stage (pc). Before that, I thought nothing could approximate the openness of tubes. Thus, even the low level can be handled by transistors.

The heart of all you see here is DIY. Build with valves, or use transistors. Better yet, try both. There are few things that compare with the joy of building something that produces wonderful music. The experience, replete with hardships and triumphs, is what it's all about!

Bob
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Old 1st February 2003, 10:17 AM   #6
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Default Re: Electron tubes?

Quote:
Originally posted by Neutron Bob
I think I was born about 40 years late. I like tubes, I like heavy, gnarly transformers, Nixie tubes, slide rules, fabric-wrapped wire, and inductors. LPs are wicked cool, carburetors, breaker point ignitions, leather jackets, and the venerable Zippo, and lots of chrome too- I just love it all!
Bob
I reckon (most of) these things are lovable if you have a choice to use them or not. The generation that had no choice but to use them may have a different opinion of how lovable they are.
Speaking as someone who grew up on carbs and points I think the faster they are forgotten about the better. A bit like grandchildren - great to cuddle but a relief to gve back to their parents. Or like some locations - a great place to visit but you wouldn't want to live there.

Having said that though, you can always tell a *real* aeroplane because it has a single propellor up front and six stubby exhaust pipes poking out each side of the cowling. Modern planes? Pttthhh!
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