JAN Philips 6L6WGB: In what amp are you using yours?

Rick330man

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I used to own two of the last American made Fender Hot Rod Deluxes. I sold one to a friend as a favor to him. He couldn't afford a new one, so he was happy to buy a well-cared-for used one. The second is still with me.

After some experimenting, my ears were pleasantly surprised at the tones my HRD put out when a pair of JAN Philips 6L6WGBs found their way in there. I really love the beautiful, clear, well-defined notes and chords I hear.

What amps are folks using these in?

Footnote: these have gotten prohibitively expensive, but man do they sound great.
 

Ian T

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I have them in a my 45410. Sounds pretty good, not magical or anything. I notice the durability of vintage tubes more than the tone. YMMV.
 

NTC

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5E7 Bandmaster based homebrew with a SF Bassman OT, 72 Traynor YBA-1 that has had the circuit changed to 5F6A Bassman specs (not much of a change). Both have a sweet sound.
 

archetype

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I had a pair of JAN Philips 6L6WGBs in my 6G9-A Tremolux head. IMO they were a bit brighter than Tung-Sols, but the more I cranked the amp the less that mattered.

When tube prices are rational the Philips are the better value compared to the ubiquitous Tung-Sols. Most of the others are rebranded Tung-Sols, but you can get good value deals on 6L6WGB/5881 tubes from GE Canada and Sylvania. The latter are same as Philips, as Philips bought Sylvania's tube division and continued making the same tubes. I think @slider313 knows how to identify Sylvania-made vs. a Sylvania that's a rebranded Tung-Sol.
 

schmee

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I have used them in many of the SF/BF fender amps. Usually a 6L6GC amp is a bit much for me, so they should tame that a bit, although I'm not sure I actually hear that at the lower volumes I play at. Usually a 6L6 type of amp I use is at 3 on the volume.
The other interesting thing is the WGB's seem to last a long time. Old stock sets I have test strong and also are VERY closely matched compared with GC's . No idea if this is random luck or a "thing".
 

Intubator

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I use a set of '61 brown base Tung Sol 6L6 WGC's in my '58 Bassman with I estimate have over 1000 hours on them and are still doing the job. On the glass 5881 is printed. Agree with what everyone has said and to add they seem to be a bit warmer to my ears than standard 6L6GC's and very durable!
 

Rick330man

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Agree with @archetype. The JAN Philips 6L6WGB has a bit of a bright edge, but that contributes to why I like it in the Hot Rod Deluxe, an amp with a notoriously bass heavy. They bring a clarity, sound stage and note detail that I don't hear with most of the 6L6GCs I've used.

I've tweaked my Hot Rod Deluxes minimally. One sounded fantastic with the stock Gold Label (Eminence Legend 125) speaker and the Sovtek tubes. The other sounded pretty dull. Using tubes tubes definitely made a difference. These JAN Philips 6L6WGB are part of the winning formula.
 

Wyzard

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2004-ish K&M LTD, a Bill Krinard design that started out as his personal 6V6 project, using Pacific transformers that were supposedly specc'd for Trainwreck amps. I keep threatening to try it with EL34s, which you can run when it's switched to its cathode bias setting (it's certainly versatile), but somehow I've never gotten around to it. Maybe next year......

My amp came fitted with WGBs, and the sound of it with them installed is why I bought it - it has a velvety breakup that I've rarely heard in other amps, and which just keeps getting smoother and more liquid as the gain and volume goes up.

I've always ended up returning to the JANs with this amp, after trying GCs at odd intervals over the last eighteen years or so.
 

dannyh

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I've used them in a Vibroverb Reissue, Super Reverb, Brown Super, Pro Reverb, pretty much any amp I've owned that took 6L6's.
 

archetype

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I had a pair of JAN Philips 6L6WGBs in my 6G9-A Tremolux head. IMO they were a bit brighter than Tung-Sols, but the more I cranked the amp the less that mattered.

When tube prices are rational the Philips are the better value compared to the ubiquitous Tung-Sols. Most of the others are rebranded Tung-Sols, but you can get good value deals on 6L6WGB/5881 tubes from GE Canada and Sylvania. The latter are same as Philips, as Philips bought Sylvania's tube division and continued making the same tubes. I think @slider313 knows how to identify Sylvania-made vs. a Sylvania that's a rebranded Tung-Sol.

IIRC, now, it's in how the plate parts are joined. Tung-Sol's are spot welded. Sylvania and Philips have punched holes with tabs inserted, bent, and crimped.
 

Wally

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What would you about using this pair of Phillips 6L6WGBs in an amp?
C4834F6B-9757-459E-BAB6-9BEA79446619.jpeg
 

MuddyWolf

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I don't have any but if I did I would put them in a vault and save them for when we get the 20 minute warning of the end of the world. Then I would throw them in any fender I got laying around and blast full volume until the world was vaporized in a cloud of 6L6WGB sonic ecstasy.
 

Wally

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My bad…that was one of my shorter posts and was surely still out in the wind when I hit the post button.
I have always considered that brown rainbow type of discoloration in the getter flashing to be an indication a long life of many, many hours of use….or some shorter period of abuse.
So, my question I suppose is ‘what are these worth to you?’. I truly don’t know at this,point. I found an article that could be construed as saying that this type of discoloration can occur in the manufacturing process.
I have only seen that brown rainbow in tubes that have their best years long gone. Before I read the article and judging by the looks, Imwould have given maybe five USD for them. Maybe tubes are like books….you gotta partake thereof????
Here’s the article….https://www.tube-town.net/info/doc/dark-getter.html

I am anxious to get these in an amp to hear what they do. It will be interesting to see how well they match. They do not read as strong as a bag of brown base UOS TungSol 5881s I have, but I am hoping they surprise me.
 

archetype

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My bad…that was one of my shorter posts and was surely still out in the wind when I hit the post button.
I have always considered that brown rainbow type of discoloration in the getter flashing to be an indication a long life of many, many hours of use….or some shorter period of abuse.
So, my question I suppose is ‘what are these worth to you?’. I truly don’t know at this,point. I found an article that could be construed as saying that this type of discoloration can occur in the manufacturing process.
I have only seen that brown rainbow in tubes that have their best years long gone. Before I read the article and judging by the looks, Imwould have given maybe five USD for them. Maybe tubes are like books….you gotta partake thereof????
Here’s the article….https://www.tube-town.net/info/doc/dark-getter.html

I am anxious to get these in an amp to hear what they do. It will be interesting to see how well they match. They do not read as strong as a bag of brown base UOS TungSol 5881s I have, but I am hoping they surprise me.

IMO getter flash is so variable that it's meaningless as a point of evaluation. If a tube tester doesn't see any shorted elements, stick 'em in an amp, bias, and enjoy.;)
 

slider313

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I have only seen that brown rainbow in tubes that have their best years long gone.
I agree. A getter flash may have a few "black spots" at burn in but when a tube shows "rainbowing" around the flashing it's a sign of long term use.

As far as a tube tester is concerned; the test point is usually 120v, or so, and no where near the 450v the tube will see in an amplifier.

A tube that has seen years of steady use may have nothing left of its silver flashing, except maybe a brown burn mark, or nothing, where it once was.

1655248778427.png
 
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