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EL 34 tubes - what's best?

AndreasG

Member
Messages
1,902
I tried JJ Teslas and found them good sounding in my 73 Marshall. Are there better ones out there? Svetlanas, Ruby, Sovteks, EH's...not considering NOS?
 

Mr.Hanky

Member
Messages
4,045
Last time I talked to Greg Leevy he reccomended Siemens, they are NOS but they are stoopid cheap.
The only problem with them is that they may not handle the plate voltage that a 73 SL can dish out.

That would be a good deal if it works but I think the plate voltage on metal panel Marshals is really high. I have one, you'd think I'd have it memorized by now.

If and when I re-tube mine I will probably get the Mullards. For the amount of time I use this amp they will last me a lifetime. My 73' 100W SL is damn near the loudest thing on god's green earth.
 

LaXu

Member
Messages
7,248
Out of the ones I've tried I've liked Svetlanas the most. Not Sovtek/Svetlana, but the "winged C" Svetlana. I think they go by SED in USA?
 

Blue Strat

Member
Messages
30,192
Originally posted by LaXu
Out of the ones I've tried I've liked Svetlanas the most. Not Sovtek/Svetlana, but the "winged C" Svetlana. I think they go by SED in USA?
What Laxu said. They go by Svetlana Electron Devices, St Petersburg Russia. "winged C" is all you really have to remember.
 

AndreasG

Member
Messages
1,902
"winged C".....someone states they sound more "hi-fi" with less breakup.... looking for classic Marshall sound. My Marshall is a 50-watter, used with a Hotplate and Strats, Firebirds, hardly any pedal (just an OD or Treble Booster sometimes..)
 

LaXu

Member
Messages
7,248
The Marshall DSL50 I had actually came with Svetlanas. I don't think they're "hi-fi" really, they have a nice warm and smooth character to me and seem to work very well in a Marshall.
 

Swarty

Member
Messages
1,131
I like JJ E34Ls. I keep trying others; EH, Winged C, Svetlana, etc... but keep going back. They just sound more robust, especially in the top end.
 

Igneous

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,937
Ill say it again...new sensor mullards are pretty cool.--Cheers-Ig
 

IPlayHamers

Member
Messages
1,223
Originally posted by Swarty
I like JJ E34Ls. I keep trying others; EH, Winged C, Svetlana, etc... but keep going back. They just sound more robust, especially in the top end.
+1 My 72 Marshall 50 watt loves the JJ E34Ls. I haven't found a EL34 that can compete with them and this includes vintage NOS tubes.

There is none better IMHO.

IPH
 

Red Planet

Senior Member
Messages
4,347
I just got some Winged C Svets and both matched quads are microphonic and buxzzing like hell. Me no likey. I sent one set back and got a replacement and they still do it.
 

iainmc

Member
Messages
843
another +1 on the JJ's - i just changed tubes in my matchless clubman from svetlanas to JJ's & it made a noticable diffrence on some stuff we've been recording.

/i
p.s. also they are what fred uses in /13s (i have an rsa23) & he is usually pretty right aobut this sort of stuff...
 
Messages
6,116
If you take a JJ EL34 and a Mullard XF2,
you'll see how the insides look identical,
same machining.
That said, I think the JJ is the best sounding
current production, but the Wing C svet
is more reliable.
Why I switched to the C. They sound good
too, but the JJ is a step better tonally.
NOS? Mullard EL34's can't be beat,
I'm stocked for life!
 

Greggy

Senior Member
Messages
13,439
In my Allen Class Act, I prefer Svets, Chinese el34b, and winged Cs, in that order. The Chinese tube is bright in a good way, which is important since my Allen is a little on the dark side of the tonal spectrum. The Svet is very rich in harmonics, I like it very much.
 

Blue Strat

Member
Messages
30,192
Originally posted by Red Planet
I just got some Winged C Svets and both matched quads are microphonic and buxzzing like hell. Me no likey. I sent one set back and got a replacement and they still do it.
Interesting. No tube brand/type is immune from problems, but I haven't had this experience with over 1000 sold.
 

aleclee

TGP Tech Wrangler
Staff member
Messages
13,239
I'd never say that a particular tube is "best" but my favorite EL34 is a 6CA7 :)

...the EH version to be precise.

But my tastes don't necessarily align with yours. They often don't with most folks around here. :)
 

hipfan

Member
Messages
2,301
Originally posted by Roccaforte Amps
If you take a JJ EL34 and a Mullard XF2,
you'll see how the insides look identical,
same machining.
That said, I think the JJ is the best sounding
current production, but the Wing C svet
is more reliable.
Why I switched to the C. They sound good
too, but the JJ is a step better tonally.
NOS? Mullard EL34's can't be beat,
I'm stocked for life!
Interesting. Doug, are you talking about JJ's regular EL34, or the bigger "E34L" that they sell. From my recollection of their construction and your comments, I would assume the former but I thought I'd ask. Thanks!
 
Messages
6,116
Originally posted by hipfan
Interesting. Doug, are you talking about JJ's regular EL34, or the bigger "E34L" that they sell. From my recollection of their construction and your comments, I would assume the former but I thought I'd ask. Thanks!




Both are the same construction,
the E34L is just a higher rated version.
Both sound great.
 

Probos

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
7,200
Originally posted by AndreasG
"winged C".....someone states they sound more "hi-fi" with less breakup.... looking for classic Marshall sound. My Marshall is a 50-watter, used with a Hotplate and Strats, Firebirds, hardly any pedal (just an OD or Treble Booster sometimes..)
I don't find the SED winged-C's to be hi-fi at all. They're very solid in the midrange with a nice bite on top. Great sounding tube.
 

Igneous

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,937
Still...I wonder why nobody talks about the new sensor el's. They are a pretty comparable tube along the likes of winged c and svet. but just with a little more.

I just bought me two more just thinking of em.

cheers-Ig
 

jcs

Member
Messages
8,085
in my 71 marshall 50 my favs;

rft/siemens el34- rich harmonics, soft searing top end great tube if you are under 480 volts or so..

mullard el34- i have metal base-xf1-xf2-xf3 all are monster perfectly balanced and superb clarity,these will reveal more guitar and finger nuances..what you put in is what you get out..

sylvania and ge 6ca7-outstanding punch clarity and a bit more of a 6550 tone but still monster punchy tone,no wonder eddie van halen loved these tubes so much in his 67 plexi 100...

early tesla el34- an outstanding mullard copy and worthy of the best amps...

my every day tubes are rft/siemens el34 :dude
 




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