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Opinions requested on best 6L6GC tubes for AA864 Bassman

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by stebon, Apr 28, 2004.

  1. stebon

    stebon Tele-Meister

    Mar 20, 2003
    Hewitt, NJ
    I recently received an AA864 Bassman with a matched set of Groove tubes, 6L6GE, one of which was not working. I checked the amp out using an original RCA 6L6GC from a friends Bandmaster, and loved the sound from both channels.....the RCA in the Bass ch. and the Groove tube in the Normal ch. What does everyone think about the sound/value of having a "matched" set of tubes in a Bassman when the channels are so different, and what brand tubes do some of you guys/gals recommend and why. All opinions and info are appreciated and I thank you all in advance.
  2. Tim Swartz

    Tim Swartz Friend of Leo's

    Mar 18, 2003
    Michigan - Tweenst the Great Lakes
    If you can afford them, there are RCA black plates and there are lesser tubes.
  3. Ringo

    Ringo Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Mar 16, 2003
    Memphis TN
    6L6's are your power tubes - more ....

    I gather from your post that you used one of the Groove Tube 6L6's and one old RCA 6L6 - correct?
    The 6L6's have nothing to do with the diffferent sounds of the 2 channels, the 6L6's are for the power output section of the amp.
    Bassman amps have 12ax7's for the preamp , 1 for the Bass channel and I believe they use 1 and 1/2 for the guitar channel, also there are differences in the caps etc between the 2 channels.
    That is where the difference in tone is for the 2 channels, you can use any 12ax7, different brands do sound different too.

    As far as the 6L6's, you can "mix" power tubes of different brands, some folks argue that mismatched tubes give you more harmonic sound, I don't know.
    Tube amps no doubt are more efficient when they are properly biased and have a good set of matched tubes, but IMO when Leo and co designed the amps, they didn't necessarily have matched tube sets in mind, most folks would just change out a tube when it went bad.

    I have a newly aquired 70's SF Bassman 50, currently running a mismatched well used set of old USA 6L6's, and it sounds amazingly good with them.
    But I'm going to get some new tubes soon, thinking about trying the JJ tubes as I've heard good things about them.
  4. Stan Martin

    Stan Martin Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    Mar 22, 2003
    although power tubes can effect yout tone, your scenario has more to do with pre amp tubes.
    as far as matched sets go. you ARE better off with matched tubes. Back in the day Leo didn't have to match them, but then again tube tolerances were a lot closer in spec in regards to current draw. Switching between a JJ and GE 6l6 may or may not be a problem as far as current draw. Was your Groove Tube still under warranty? If so, GT will replace the PAIR. A good thing I say.
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