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Old 12th November 2003, 07:07 AM   #1
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Default Sound Difference Old verses New Tubes

Does anyone know the sound difference between old verses new tubes of the same make running at the same bias, the reason i`m asking is that my amp runs kt88 4 per channel and has cathode biasing. (Automaticly goes up as the tube ages). I run them very hard and their getting old now, but the cathode bias is keeping them at the same bias as when they were new. But i`m wondering if now the sound is staring to loose a bit of transient attack and getting a bit lazy. It` still sounds very smooth.
Thanks George.
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Old 12th November 2003, 07:22 AM   #2
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New tubes tend to sound brash and immature, while older tubes are more relaxed, slower; well-used tubes may have a fat or flabby sound to them...

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Old 12th November 2003, 08:19 AM   #3
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Default I joking???


You forgot the bit about old tubes being slow to warm up... but are generally tolerant of abuse but once they do overheat tend to get very sharp and aggressive...


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Old 12th November 2003, 01:33 PM   #4
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Default Old tubes always better than new ones ?

Hi All,
In my second year at engineering college we were taught by an electronics lecturer about tubes. He meticulously derived the equations that defined the performance of a tube. It looked so simple at the time. It was not so simple when we got home. But there was someone who knew how it could be 'manipulated' to do what you wanted it to do. He is still there and so I am sure are many more in countries where they MAKE the tubes.

So how is it that with better materials , better production facilities,more all round accuracy and sophisticated simulation tools , we still say that OLD tubes sound better than new ones ? It should have been the other way round - 'unless' the people designing it nowadays are no good .
Are we missing something?

What other explanation is there ?
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Old 12th November 2003, 01:45 PM   #5
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When I learned about and used valves in the 60's and 70's, there were 2 classes.

1. The UK made ones, and a few foreign types made in W Europe and USA that were often re-branded.
These were of consistent quality. None of these factories now exist.

2. There were others from elsewhere. I suspect they came from E Europe and the Far East.
These were of variable quality. These factories probably still produce.

Please note my term "variable quality". I do not say that all the production from these sources is poor, but on average it will not be as good as the NOS types mentioned in paragraph 1.
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