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Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Best way to turn on and turn off a tube amp?

Discussion in 'Glowing Bottle Tube Amp Forum' started by HotRodSteve, Jan 31, 2014.

  1. figaro

    figaro Tele-Meister

    May 18, 2010
    Sweet Carolina
    Leo named it "Standby" switch. So use it for that!

    Not to turn your amp on or off.

  2. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

    Guys like Wally and Muchxs are not armchair engineers but well known amp techs and builders.

  3. Chritty

    Chritty Tele-Afflicted

    Too bad it's six months that makes it a zombie

  4. trev333

    trev333 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    the old valve B&W TV's ,,we just switched them on... and watched the picture warm up as the tubes kicked in...... they never got warmed up.. signal hit them as soon as the switch was flicked...

    and then we just switched it off.... thousands of times over and over.... it never bothered the TV amp tubes much....;)

  5. hshight

    hshight Tele-Meister

    May 25, 2010
    near Memphis
    I'll venture off topic now, it being my zombie and all....

    A buddy and I were just talking about the great tone some old console TVs had....wonder if a guitar would sound good through one? Probably too bassy...

  6. sbpark

    sbpark Friend of Leo's

    Feb 10, 2009
    The West
    Most amps usually come with switches on them, which make turning the amp on and off a breeze! Some lower end models don't have this switch, which can be problematic when trying to turn the amp off.

  7. Johnny Cache

    Johnny Cache Former Member

    Mar 6, 2014
    If your amp has a standby switch use it. It sure won't hurt.

  8. Johnny Cache

    Johnny Cache Former Member

    Mar 6, 2014

    Not exactly true. TV tubes wore out and every grocery store sold them. Back in those days, the tubes were made better than what you find today. Thus the desire and market for NOS tubes and the huge price you pay for them today. Allot of old TV's had a stand by switch on the back intended for instant on. Some of those switches said things like Vacation/Instant on, or some other term. I remember my dad switching to vacation mode when we went away for a week or two, telling me it saved electricity. He also said, it's easier on the tubes to keep them warm instead of hitting them all at once with full voltage and current. As an electrical engineer working for NASA and helping me build my first radios and first stereo, I'll trust his judgment on that.

  9. Larry F

    Larry F Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Nov 5, 2006
    Iowa City, IA
    Speaking of TVs, do you remember the white dot? You turned the tv off, and it seemed as if the light on the screen was sucked out this little white dot in the center. The dot would stay on for a few seconds, then it was gone. This activity was a great going to bed ritual.

    Imagine what our dads and/or us had to know how to do back then. I remember my dad having a big mirror set up on chair so that he could see the picture from behind the set, where he was tuning things, I guess. And, also, imagine all the Joe Blows taking a brown paper bag filled with tubes to the grocery store.

    Then there's the whole car thing. And, get this, remember 20-year olds flying B-17s?

    Wait a minute...where is this coming from, anyway? I'm rarely down on the skills of people today, but something just snapped.

  10. soulman969

    soulman969 Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 20, 2011
    Englewood, CO
    LMAO! I recall when it was first posted my inclination was to respond with something like that's what an on/off switch is for. Does it really need written instructions. Even the purpose of a standby switch seems pretty self explanatory to me.

  11. Ricky D.

    Ricky D. Poster Extraordinaire

    Oct 22, 2006
    Raleigh, North Carolina
    A highlight from growing up. I'm about 8 years old, 1959, and my Dad gives me a paper lunch bag full of tubes and a $5.00 bill. The next day, I walk a mile out to the drug store, test all the tubes on the tester they had, and buy a replacement for the bad one. Also blow $.05 on a coke at the soda fountain.

  12. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Friend of Leo's

    Sep 15, 2007
    Glen Head, NY
    Vox's video on the comparison between the "custom" (reissue/redesign) and "handwired" AC30 points out that "with a tube rectifier a standby switch isn't needed" (or something to that effect). Which brings us back to the idea that companies are selling products with features that they believe the market is looking for; nothing wrong with that.

    (this thread is a trainwreck -- I just can't look away)

  13. rokdog49

    rokdog49 Friend of Leo's

    Mar 22, 2010
    This is how it'ts done on a DRRI.
    Turning Amp on: Turn on Standby switch first, wait ten seconds then turn on Power Switch.
    Turning Amp off: Turn off Power Switch first, then Standby switch.

    Because I say so;)

  14. xMercury69x

    xMercury69x Friend of Leo's

    Nov 9, 2012
    My baby blue Vox AC4C1 doesn't have a standby switch.

    So there.

  15. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 17, 2003
    Lubbock, TX
    google/bing/whatever search engine you want...cathode stripping and cathode poisoning.
    Read Hartley Peavey's thoughts on the subject of standby switches. Read the valvewizard link tha tis provided on page ttwo of this thread. the words sung by Ginger Baker...

    "Do what you like!
    Do what you like!"

  16. rokdog49

    rokdog49 Friend of Leo's

    Mar 22, 2010
    Good ol' Hartley. After reading this I am now in effect a "Standby Switch Guru"

  17. jwp333

    jwp333 Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

    Jul 17, 2013
    Richmond, VA
    I'm a little bit younger, born in 1964, but I remember the tube testing machine at my local Cardinal Drug Store. This would have been some time maybe up through the mid to late 70's. I never got to use it, maybe we thought it was unsafe to open up the back of the TV set and start pulling tubes. But I'd like to take a trip back in time to have a closer look at that tester and the tubes for sale in the old drug store.

  18. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 17, 2003
    Lubbock, TX
    Read more, rokdog.....

  19. TwangToInfinity

    TwangToInfinity Tele-Holic

    May 2, 2013
    i just pull the plug

    i dont know if its bad or what

    sometimes i wonder if i should play while its fading out to drain the things

  20. DannyStereo

    DannyStereo Poster Extraordinaire

    Aug 13, 2014
    Kelso, Washington
    The standby switch scares the crap out of me. What if I don't use it and my amp blows?!?! Or, what if I DO use it and fry my EL84s?!?!?

    Curse you, Leo, you beautiful tone elf!

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