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What's your favorite EL84 for an AC15C1?

Discussion in 'Glowing Bottle Tube Amp Forum' started by sbpark, Dec 11, 2014.

  1. sbpark

    sbpark Friend of Leo's

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    Interested in picking up a pair of new/spare tubes for my AC15C1. Just looking for a decent, solid set of tubes that sound good and won't crush the bank. Anyone have any experience with anything that's new production that sounds nice in these amps? I have a small collection of preamp tubes that I will try, but feel free to also suggest what preamp tubes are working for you as well. Thanks in advance!
     
  2. soulman969

    soulman969 Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I don't have an AC15 but the Tung-Sol reissues were the best I found for my Bugera. JJs also seem to do well in Vox amps I just didn't care for them in my "Bug".


    Review:

    Tungsol EL84 / 6BQ5 - Combine the rugged build quality you find in Sovtek and the sweet tone you get from JJ and you’ll get a good idea what these tubes are all about. Structurally, they have the same bottles used in Sovtek, EH, and Mullard EL84 tubes. Thick glass, a bit on the tubby side, with nicely finished pins and rugged spacers. The getter design is different from all the other New Sensor tubes. Instead of a small cup these tubes have a single halo type getter up top. The plate coating is also different, having a dark burnished charcoal look. The screening is clearly applied. Overall they look very nice. If your amp will use any of the New Sensor EL84’s the Tungsol EL84 tube will fit just fine. Sonically, I compared the Tung-Sol EL84 power tubes with current offerings from New Sensor and the Tube Store Preferred series 7189. They sound very punchy and have lots of gain. The sound was more articulate than anything from Sovtek, EH or Mullard and was very similar to the Preferred Series 7189. I haven’t tried them in hi-fi equipment but I’m very confident they will be a hit in the audio community based on my guitar amp testing. Very low noise floor and no mechanical noise. Great crunch is easily achieved with a humbucker equipped guitar, while the sparkle shines through with single coils. When pushed into clipping these tubes just give off amazing harmonics and allow you to access some great, controlled feedback. I’m sold! The manufacturer claims the Tung Sol tubes are the best thing for VOX AC30 amps and I have to agree. Testing in my own cathode biased amp confirmed their statements. My amp eats lesser tubes from Russia and many NOS offerings, but the Tungsol EL84 tubes hung in. Not a hint of hot spots or red plating and no trace of mechanical noise or microphonics.
     
  3. MadJack

    MadJack Friend of Leo's

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    I'm using the Genalex Gold Lion EL84s in mine. They give me a beautiful warm shimmering chime, beautiful harmonics and great note blossom. Works perfectly with the AlNiCo Blue Dog speaker. The JJs were better than the stock Chinese EL84s, but they were too stark, bright and gritty sounding. I like warm smooth and glassy tones I'm getting with the GLs.
     
  4. sbpark

    sbpark Friend of Leo's

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    The Genalex fit in your AC15? TubeDepot says that these won't fit into an AC15...https://www.tubedepot.com/products/genalex-gold-lion-n709-el84-power-vacuum-tube
     
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  5. gypsyseven

    gypsyseven Friend of Leo's

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    I use JJ's and used TAD's...both are great!
     
  6. DaveKS

    DaveKS Friend of Leo's

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  7. sbpark

    sbpark Friend of Leo's

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    Doesn't say anything about them not being able to handle the current, it says it's because of their physical size that they won't fit, since they're different in size to a standard EL84. This seems to be the case with many EL84's. I'm finding that there are disclaimers stating that this tube or that tube won't fit in an AC15 (and not because they can't handle the current), then you read about people actually using them. Huh.
     
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  8. thegreatwent

    thegreatwent TDPRI Member

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    I've a Valvetech Hayseed 30 and my favorites so far have been thetubestore.com's Preferred Series EL84. They are Russian and not too expensive, robust and sound great.
     
  9. mitchfit

    mitchfit Tele-Holic

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    i like the sovtech EL 84M in my Winfield 18/30 head. raises the crunch threshold considerably, some feel they are to "hi-fi".

    disagree.

    the bugler, mullards and telefunkies are all highly sought after by the hi-fi kids also.

    will better stand the abuse of the AC15 voltage and heat.

    https://tubedepot.com/products/sovtek-el84m-power-vacuum-tube

    also reported these don't fit ac-15 reissue - get a tape measure...

    mitchfit
     
  10. MatchlessMan

    MatchlessMan Tele-Holic

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    I gig a Matchless Lightning, which is basically a military spec AC15. It came fitted with JJs and I have always used them.
     
  11. tdutton7

    tdutton7 TDPRI Member

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    I'm jumping in here to respond to the genalex post, are there any other el84 tube replacements that are similar To the genalex's? That share the warmth, But ones that are sure to fit an ac15? (I'm new to the gear world so I'm soaking it all in haha)
     
  12. MadJack

    MadJack Friend of Leo's

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    I have no issues with the Gold Lions in my AC15C1. That's what's in it right now.
     
  13. tdutton7

    tdutton7 TDPRI Member

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    Awesome! I'll be looking into them then!
     
  14. EastsideBlues

    EastsideBlues TDPRI Member

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    I like the Tung Sol's in mine. The JJ EL844 sounds good too. I have not tried the Mullard's.
    The size caveats should not apply to these amps. I believe the C1 model production started around 2009/2010 and there is plenty of space around each tube.
     
  15. Mike Eskimo

    Mike Eskimo Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Look em up.

    No better tube, IMNSHO, for an AC15
     
  16. EastsideBlues

    EastsideBlues TDPRI Member

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    I put in the Mullards. They sound great!
     
  17. gobi_grey

    gobi_grey Tele-Afflicted

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    TAD.
     
  18. SngleCoil

    SngleCoil Tele-Holic

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    Shhhhh...don’t let everyone in on the secret!
     
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