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6v6/6l6 vs el34/el84

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by tele-nova, Apr 20, 2021.

Which type of tubes do you prefer in an amp

  1. 6v6/6l6

  2. El34/el84

Results are only viewable after voting.
  1. DrBGood

    DrBGood Tele-Holic

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    No need to choose for me, this guy delivers them both or mixed if need be.

    Tone 2021 N&B.jpg
     
  2. Ringo

    Ringo Poster Extraordinaire

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    I had one of those some years ago, I liked it , some good tonz.... Mesa Boogie made and amp with 6V6s and EL84, you could use either or blend them, a guy I know had one, I thought it was a great sounding amp, his was a 4-10 big and heavy.
     
  3. Paul G.

    Paul G. Friend of Leo's

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    Tubes sound like the circuit they're in. I like 'em all, although EL84 tend to be more delicate than the others.
     
    archetype and northernguitar like this.
  4. northernguitar

    northernguitar Friend of Leo's

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    I like my British sound amps. EL34 amps were WAY too much power for what I want. EL84 amps have been my favourites for years.
     
  5. Mexitele Blues

    Mexitele Blues Tele-Afflicted

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    This is the question I answered as well.
     
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  6. DrBGood

    DrBGood Tele-Holic

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    Right. Before the Egnater Rebel 30 above, I had a beautiful Traynor YCV20WR that runs EL84 and I never could get any gain out of it without sounding like I had a fuzz pedal in the circuit. I finally tamed it a bit with a preamp 12AU7. Nothing to do with EL84s.
     
  7. mkdaws32

    mkdaws32 Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    This is probably why I like EL34's more. I do like EL84s, but they generally sound a little less lively to me that EL34s. When I think of clean headroom, I think of 6L6s, but that's probably more to do with the amps I know that use 6L6s as a whole, rather than output tubes themselves. I do know if I wanted stadium loud, aggressive rock tone, I'd go with a JCM 800 2203 loaded with 6550s :) :) :) But in reality, I'll never play anywhere where I could get that amp really cooking.
     
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  8. stormsedge

    stormsedge Friend of Leo's

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    I do...and truth be told, I probably adjust the amp/apply pedals until each sounds about the same as the next :(.
     
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  9. KnopflerStyle

    KnopflerStyle Tele-Afflicted

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    12BH7? should be equal to what?
     
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  10. GuitarsBuicks

    GuitarsBuicks Tele-Holic

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    The 6L6/12AX7 combination gives you lots of headroom. Where as the 34/84 decreases headroom and wattage to make distortion quicker at lower volumes. Think British vs American.
     
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  11. DrBGood

    DrBGood Tele-Holic

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    You mean like British coolness vs American ... nahh ... forget that.
     
  12. telel6s

    telel6s Tele-Afflicted

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    5881 :)

    Currently have:
    • 2 x 6L6 in the Super Reverb
    • 2 x 6V6 in the Princeton
    • 1 x 5881 in the VHT Special 6
    Used to have:
    • 2 x EL84 in a Epiphone EA50t Pacemaker
    • 2 x EL84 in a Dr Z Carmen Ghia
    • 2 x 6V6 in a Marsh 5E3 clone
    So I guess I lean towards the 6xx power tubes. But I loved the Carmen Ghia when it could be turned up loud.
     
  13. homesick345

    homesick345 Poster Extraordinaire

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    6V6 could be real close to EL34
     
  14. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

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    The type of power tube is immaterial. Preamp design is the difference. English amps like Marshall and Vox copied the Bassman and classic versions still use an architecture derived from those, including a cathode follower stage recovering the equaliser section or effects loop, and limited presence (negative feedback). The Vox AC30 has none.

    Fender went down a path of increased NFB and lower gain to accommodate reverb and big clean tone.

    The Marshall 4001 Studio, and DSL15 both used 6V6s. They sound like - Marshalls, not Fenders.

    British makers were forced into EL84 and EL34 by post-WWII trade laws designed to stop US industries dominating shattered European economies. So the first JTM45 used 5881s but after that Marshall stuck with EL34s.
     
  15. Tim S

    Tim S Tele-Afflicted Gold Supporter

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    If you have an amp that can take any octal tube(s), then the odd man out is the EL84 (unless you used adapters). So I say “Most of the above” :D
     
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  16. Tim S

    Tim S Tele-Afflicted Gold Supporter

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    I *think* you skipped the KT66 in that progression, IIRC.
     
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  17. budglo

    budglo Tele-Meister

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    I guess for me it’s mostly 6l6 and 6v6 due to they’re Fender amps, but I also have a Marshall el34 amp,just because.
     
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  18. codamedia

    codamedia Poster Extraordinaire

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    I don't doubt some models won't have the clean headroom... but as a chicken picker myself, I have never had an AC30 or Peavey Classic 50 run out of clean headroom on any size stage.

    I think you are confusing the circuits with the tubes that are synonymous with the circuits.

    Hiwatt's and Musicmans are both Twin killers in regards to clean headroom, and both were designed to use EL34's. Around 1980 Musicman switched to 6L6 tubes... and the amps still sounded/behaved the same as the EL34 version prior (when comparing same models).
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2021
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  19. scottser

    scottser Friend of Leo's

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    i've tried loads of different tubes in my vht special 6, and i keep coming back to either a 6L6 or a 6V6GT, which is very similar. EL 34s are quite spiky and EL84s don't have enough grunt in class A. a single 6L6 is plenty loud and clean for most situations i find.
     
  20. darkwaters

    darkwaters Friend of Leo's

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    6V6/6L6 by a wide margin for me. I've owned several EL84 amps and dumped them. Now when I'm shopping I avoid EL84 completely.
     
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