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

lifespan of average 6l6 and 12ax7 tube?

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by aznxtasy341, Feb 5, 2007.

  1. aznxtasy341

    aznxtasy341 Tele-Holic

    May 29, 2006
    im a little affraid of the way i play my tube amps, i only play it for very erracdic periods, like turn it on and play for 15 minutes, turn off and turn it on again in 1 hour, is this bad for the tubes? or is any harm being done to the amp in general playing like this?

    also, when it gets around for the amp to need retubing, what brands do you reccomend? should i just stick with the normal, classic groove tubes, or experiment. ive been tempted into trying a couple elhx ones but i dont have any experience with those.


  2. Tremo

    Tremo Banned

    Don't waste your dough on the overpriced Boob Toobz. Just call Bob at Eurotubes and tell him what you want.

  3. tazzboy

    tazzboy Former Member

    May 5, 2005
    Yeah I agree. Power Tubes (6L6, etc.) will generally will last between 6 months to Year and pre amp tubes (12AX7, etc.) will last you 1 to 5 year sometimes longer if they don't go microphonic or loose there punch.

    Of course this depends how hard you play.

  4. BillyC

    BillyC Tele-Meister

    Sep 7, 2006
    I use JJ's,I get them from Bob at Eurotubes.They're always perfectly matched.

  5. trevorus

    trevorus TDPRI Member

    Jan 5, 2007
    Urbana, Illinois
    That kind of life span is at gigging levels. I have seen tubes on home played and jam session amps last much longer. Especially if they are biased properly.

  6. jonzer

    jonzer Friend of Leo's

    Jun 23, 2005
    I've had my tubes in my DRRI for at least four years. I've gigged but maybe I'm not playing it loud enough. I'll probably burn through them faster now that I'm in a four piece, much louder, band.

  7. woodman

    woodman Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free + Supporter

    Nov 28, 2004
    Mint Hill, NC
    i always pay the extra dough for NOS. they always seem to last longer than current manufacture. i've had a lot of luck with Mike at KCA ... being a guitarist himself, he can usually sense what i'm after and make spot-on recommendations.

  8. ryokan

    ryokan Tele-Holic

    Sep 15, 2005
    My Ampeg Gemini still has the original power tubes (Ampeg branded Sylvania's), and the original preamp tubes (Mullard). It sounds absolutely incredible and it was made in 1967! So, tubes can last a LONG time, if you have the right ones.

  9. Axis29

    Axis29 Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Jan 2, 2007
    Virginia, USA
    My Mesa still has the original 6l6 and 12ax7's and I bought it in '92 or '93.

    I don't play it super loud much... I can't it's too loud! However, it also has a nice standby switch. I'm usually pretty steady about using it and letting the tubes warm up a good long time before cranking it any.

    Now, I'm not gigging every week. Nowehre, near it! And my amp doesn't get moved around a lot, although it's starting to see more traffic lately.

  10. The Radium King

    The Radium King Tele-Meister

    Aug 2, 2006
    i've done lots of hacks and mods to amps, and from my experience the most toneful results have come from changing the preamp tubes. the GT tubes that fender uses get a lot of bad rap, and i tend to agree with this - 'ain't got no soul'. EH tubes tend to be bright. if you got the $$$, mullards sound excellent. for us mere mortals, the tung-sol reissues sound great and are not too expensive. i've got some tads on order and am excited to give 'em a listen.

IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.