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Old 3rd November 2008, 04:56 PM   #1
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Default KT88 Recommendations?

I am in the planning stages for building a new amp and I need recommendations on current KT88 tubes. Has anyone had experience with EH, JJ, Sovtek or any other that they would recommend?
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Old 3rd November 2008, 06:44 PM   #2
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New Sensor's Saratov, Russia, plant makes 2 variants that are (IMO) your best bet. The EH labeled tube is the less costly of the pair, while the GEC "reissue" would be rated quite good, in any era.

JJ's Octal based production has been, at best, inconsistent, while Chinese KT88s of recent manufacture are GARBAGE. If it were possible to buy older Chinese production, with a degree of certainty, they would not be a poor selection.
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Old 4th November 2008, 03:38 PM   #3
kevinkr is offline kevinkr  United States
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I've had some minor consistency problems with EH KT88, nothing major, but as a consequence I would strongly recommend you get them from someone like Jim McShane who tests, matches and burns them in at real world voltages and currents.. This should all but eliminate the early failures, and not too many vendors do this.
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Old 4th November 2008, 05:01 PM   #4
n_maher is offline n_maher  United States
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Quote:
Originally posted by kevinkr
I've had some minor consistency problems with EH KT88, nothing major, but as a consequence I would strongly recommend you get them from someone like Jim McShane who tests, matches and burns them in at real world voltages and currents.. This should all but eliminate the early failures, and not too many vendors do this.
Does Jim have a website?
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Old 4th November 2008, 05:34 PM   #5
Cobra2 is offline Cobra2  Norway
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http://pages.prodigy.net/jimmcshane/tubes.htm

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Old 4th November 2008, 06:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by Eli Duttman
If it were possible to buy older Chinese production, with a degree of certainty, they would not be a poor selection.

Not to thread hijack, but I have about 9-10 (3 matched prs and a few extras) of these Chinese KT88's. Are they older production or newer garbage?
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Old 4th November 2008, 06:30 PM   #7
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another pic:
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Old 4th November 2008, 07:47 PM   #8
kevinkr is offline kevinkr  United States
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Date code indicates 23 week of 1987, so these are older production "Golden Dragon." (PM Components?? IIRC) I am unfortunately quite familiar with these, and while they sound quite good, reliable is not a word I would use in conjunction with them. Best used at voltages not much higher than 400V and may 60mA plate current. I repaired more than a few ARC (M100) amplifiers after these tubes blew up in them.
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Old 4th November 2008, 10:56 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by kevinkr
I am unfortunately quite familiar with these, and while they sound quite good, reliable is not a word I would use in conjunction with them.
Kevin: Thanks for the info! I suppose you could have said "the only thing reliable about them is their unreliability". They came in Red/Black Gold Lion Boxes. I've run a couple in my Quicksilver Mini Mites and thought they sounded quite good, although I prefer EL34's in the Quickies.

I recently picked up a nice used quad of the Genelex Gold Lion Reissues, so I am planning on selling these tubes for cheap if folks want to use them for amp testing, etc.
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Old 5th November 2008, 12:09 AM   #10
N1ESE is offline N1ESE  United States
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For my new amp, I have a pair of EH KT88's arriving tomorrow from Jim McShane. I've heard nothing but good things about the EH's when purchased from someone reputable like Jim.
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