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Panicos K 20th February 2009 08:45 PM

NOS Philips "miniwatt/dario" tubes
Does anyone know about these NOS Philips "miniwatt/dario" tubes?Are they any special types,budget types or something?

Klimon 21st February 2009 05:11 AM

AFAIK this is a French branch of Philips, which doesn't really imply a difference in quality but rather production in French plant. As always: in several cases the production code reveal them to be fabricated in foreign e.g. Heerlen Philips factories.


Panicos K 21st February 2009 08:54 AM

Hi Klimon,thanks for your reply.So,would you think that these are closer to the European made Philips than the JAN USA made ones?

barretter 21st February 2009 09:28 AM

Philips had factories all over the world, so you cannot assume that a particular subsidiary like Dario in France or Mullard in Britain produced its own valves. The only way of determining the source of a particular valve is in the code letters and figures etched into the glass (not the same as the printed designations, EL84, ECC83, etc). These can be read with aid of a magnifying glass and compared with the "Philips Factory Valve Codes" document which can be found at various locations by googling the title.

Klimon 21st February 2009 07:05 PM


So,would you think that these are closer to the European made Philips than the JAN USA made ones?
In general, yes.


barretter 21st February 2009 07:28 PM

In the absence of any further information (e.g. what valves are we talking about?) that is pure speculation.

Panicos K 21st February 2009 07:38 PM


Klimon 21st February 2009 08:04 PM

As barretter says, if you have the tubes at hand check the production code (you can find code lists on the net). fwiw I've got some yellow print dario miniwatt 12ax7 that iirc are Heerlen production.


Panicos K 21st February 2009 08:23 PM

I expect to have them in a few days.All I know now is the production date which is 1963.I will have a look when they arrive.Actually what I am trying to learn is,if European made Philips tubes have a diferent sound than JAN US made Philips,and if all European Philips have a consistent sound between them despite the (European) country of manufacture.

barretter 21st February 2009 10:33 PM

Ah, the ECC83/12AX7! I suppose most valve factories in the world have made these. Mullard in the UK made at least two very different versions. I suspect the Dutch factories would make special quality versions too. I remember that the Vacuum Tube Valley magazine in the USA devoted an issue to this valve but they couldn't agree which was best. There were different outcomes for use in audio and in guitar amplifiers. You would need a lot of money and time to compare only the Philips variants. Military valves (such as JAN) are not necessarily better than the normal commercial variants for audio : they have different priorities.

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