6V6 question: Girth, authority, tone: JJs (modern contender) vs. NOS JAN RCA or other

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by PSaulino, Feb 20, 2008.

  1. PSaulino

    PSaulino Silver Supporting Member

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    Ok,

    I love 6V6s, but I have to qualify and say I love NOS Jan RCA (Gray glass) or RCA GTAs.

    Have heard GREAT things about the JJs, mostly that they are more like 6L6s (a GOOD thing) but..

    How do they stack up to NOS? Girth, tone, authority, smoothnes..
    Anyway, thanks for the responses.

    Paul
     
  2. Cranknfrank

    Cranknfrank Member

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    IMO, nothing beats the RCA's. Those are the absolute best sounding 6v6's I've ever had. But, I currently have the Electro-Harmonix 6v6's in my '66 BFDR and my DRRI. I will soon put the EH's in my Bad Cat Panther when it's ready for new tubes. The consistency and tone of the EH's has been very good. They are also very reasonably priced.

    Frank
     
  3. Scumback Speakers

    Scumback Speakers Gold Supporting Member

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    RCA's are good, but I like the Raytheon 6V6's better (at least in my amps).
     
  4. Dave

    Dave Member

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    Brimar is my 6V6 of choice right now, but I've used the JJs and they sounded great IMO.
     
  5. bizzwriter

    bizzwriter Member

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    Nothing but NOS RCA 6v6s in my old Fender amps, but I've got two old Brimar coke bottle 6v6s in my wreck clone, and they sound like GOD>
     
  6. mrface2112

    mrface2112 Member

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    My experience is with Fender Champs and Vibro Champs (silver and black faces). I've used JJ's, EH's, GE grey plate, RCA grey plate and RCA black plates.

    My take:

    JJ: Definitely "hotter" and louder than the others--definitely closer to a 6L6 than a 6V6. They're also darker and not as smooth sounding.....more "up front" sounding and "girthy" if that makes any sense. Good if you need to darken and embolden an amp.

    EH: Are actually rebadged Sovteks. Kind of uninspiring and abrasive sounding. Didn't like it at all. Wasn't in the amp for very long.

    GE: Smooth, "warm" sound, excellent mids, kinda spongey bottom. not as loud as the JJ's and EH's....but could be a weaker tube.

    RCA Grey: Tonally similar to the GE with better highs and less-forward mids. Smooth and chimey.

    RCA Black: Stunning highs, tight bottom and excellent mids. I wouldn't call either of the RCA's "girthy".....but rather sweet and smooth. Easily my favorite of the bunch.


    Really the JJ's and RCA's are apples and oranges......they offer such different things as the JJ's are loud, dark and forward, whereas the RCA's are smooth and chimey.

    Since you've got experience with RCAs, pick up some JJ's and see how they stack up to your ears. They're pretty cheap, so you're not out much if you don't like em.


    cheers,
    wade
     
  7. tenbender

    tenbender Supporting Member

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    I want to try a set of 6V6's in my Germino Club 40, which would you suggest?
     
  8. wiredturtle

    wiredturtle Member

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    interesting! Any words about the Mazda's? I've got EH in my little trio of 6V6'ers and I'm not impressed.
    [​IMG]
     
  9. slider313

    slider313 Silver Supporting Member

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    JJ's are the loudest of the bunch. My take on the tone of a JJ 6V6 is more a 7591A type tone. Tight bass, good crunch, good mids and a little bright on top. I like the new Tung Sol 6V6's. These sound very close to my RCA 7408's, with a little tighter envelope. You won't get the bigger push in volume the JJ's give, but an excellent 6V6 tone all the way.
     
  10. stump

    stump Member

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    I'm partial to all of the Old Stock stuff and the descriptions above are spot on. For current production the JJ's are excellent and to me sound a bit like the RCA Black Plates. Just my 2 cents though as everyone hears differently.
     
  11. riffmeister

    riffmeister Gold Supporting Member

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    In my Toneking Meteor, JJ's have more low-mid/mid girth compared to NOS Phillips. I like the sound of the amp quite a lot with a pair of each.
     
  12. redtoploader

    redtoploader Member

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    I agree about the JJ's here...more '6l6y'

    Hey Mike, do those 6v6G type tubes stand up to deluxe reverb type voltages okay? I'm wanting a pair for a new build...;)
     
  13. bluesbreaker59

    bluesbreaker59 Silver Supporting Member

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    JJ's definitely lean more towards a durable, sturdy 6L6, great bass response, good crunchy tube, a little more trebly than NOS stuff, IN GENERAL.

    Blackplate GE's are my fave, followed very closely by blackplate RCAs, and frankly the new Tung Sol's. The Tung Sol reissue has sold me, very great sounding tube, little softer than the JJ's and not as bright, smoothed out response.

    I'm saying all this based on my Vicky Double Deluxe at gig volumes used with a variety of guitars, but primarily a 335 (75%) strat (20%) and Dano slide guitar (5%)
     
  14. sickboy79

    sickboy79 Member

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    I haven't played the JJs either - all the descriptions I've read seem to turn me off them. Too much headroom, too much bottom end. (I'm not a huge JJ power tube fan except for their EL84 - the others are nice - just not my favorite). I do like new production EHs. I've got a newer Chinese 6v6 in my Victoria 518 that sounds nice too.

    For NOS stuff - I've never tried RCAs either. I do have experience with GE and Mazda. Both are outstanding. The Mazda really delivers the goods for dirty tones. Just amazing. The GE are extremely well balanced, with a nice clarity when pushed. Just the right about of compression.
     
  15. Blue Strat

    Blue Strat Member

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    Many of my customers love the Brimar 6V6GTs in those amps.
     
  16. Free

    Free Member

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    Without a doubt, JJ's because they are so stout and handle higher voltages so well.
     
  17. Free

    Free Member

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    The above two responses are exactly what I've experienced with those tubes, leaving me to wonder where this reviewer is coming from below?? This doesn't add up - the last thing JJ's are is darker - just felt compelled to clarify this:

     
  18. studiodunn

    studiodunn Member

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    Man, I'm looking to throw a set of 6v6's in my new train45 and I was leaning towards the tung sols but all the praise for the JJ's has me wondering.

    FWIW I have hated almost every set of JJ's in every flavor I have used. They always sound thin and anemic to my ears.

    As someone mentioned brimar coke bottles they loved in a wreck amp, does anyone have any input on the 6v6/train 45 scenario?
     
  19. TNO

    TNO Member

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    What makes the JJ a true 6v6? Looks nothing like a 6V6 internally. I think the JJ pins are slightly bigger, I had to re-tension sockets in my vintage amps after using them.
     
  20. Logan

    Logan Member

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    Exactly my experience, more treble, great bass from the JJ's.

    I enjoy the Marconi 6V6 in my deluxe.

     

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