Has anyone experience with Svetlana NOS EF86s?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by The Rocket, Apr 11, 2008.

  1. The Rocket

    The Rocket Member

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    Any comments on these tubes?
    How do they compare to the other "famous" brands as Mullards, Dario etc...?

    I'm looking for some NOS EF86 for my Ceriatone DC30...
     
  2. fizbin

    fizbin Member

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    IMO the Svetlana was just average or below. I have tried 4 different EF86 tubes in my DC30 clone thus far and here is my order of preference. It's very telling when you push the tube hard with a boost - lesser ones will get harsh. Also, listen to a note envelope sustain on different pickup settings all the way down to silence if possible. Sometimes they will sound uneven as it fades out or it will just sort of drop out prematurely. Good ones won't do this. The Amperex didn't exhibit any of the negative effects. The Tung-Sol sounded kind of harsh without even pushing it.

    1) NOS Amperex Bugle Boy (France)
    2) NOS RFT (Germany)
    3) NOS Svetlana (Russia)
    4) New Tung-Sol gold pin reissue (China)

    I have a Mullard and a Philips on the way. I'll report back after I hear them - maybe by the end of the week.
     
  3. fizbin

    fizbin Member

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    I've managed to collect a few more to try. Really only missing a GEC and a Telefunken among the most notable options I believe. Those tend to be the more expensive options from what I've seen.

    I favor the Mullards, the Bugle Boy, and right now specifically the Miniwatt Dario. The new Tung-SOL reissue is my least favorite. I would highly recommend just paying the extra and getting a Miniwatt Dario and be done with it. They aren't terribly unreasonable.

    Top row:
    Mullard long mesh (UK)
    "The Fisher" branded Mullard long mesh (UK)
    Amperex Bugle Boy (France)
    Amperex (Germany)
    RFT (Germany)
    Bottom row:
    Svetlana (Russia)
    Tung-Sol (China)
    Philips Miniwatt (Holland)
    Miniwatt Dario (Holland)
    [​IMG]
     
  4. big mike

    big mike Moderator - EL34 Emeritas Staff Member

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    Dario Miniwatt. End of search for me. Better than the Mullard.
    Amp was a DrZ Z28
     
  5. Blue Strat

    Blue Strat Member

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    The only reason why Svetlana EF86s might be considered "NOS" to some people would be that they were discontinued (because of horrible performance).

    Any of the REAL (US and Western European) NOS brands of EF86s will, in general, outperform the Svetlanas. Of course, there will be specific examples that won't work as well as others.

    The EF86 is typically a problematic tube in guitar amps, especially in combos, due to their high gain which accentuates microphonics.
     

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