How long do your tubes last?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Webfoot, Jun 10, 2011.

  1. Webfoot

    Webfoot Supporting Member

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    Of course its a function of amp usage... but curious if someone uses there amp alot... like a 40 watt 6L6 amp... and there tubes have lasted 10 years.
     
  2. SteveO

    SteveO Member

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    My Peavey Classic 50/50 has the original EL84s in it from when I bought it new in 1995. It doesn't get pushed hard very often though, as it gets way too loud for most situations I've ever had it in.
     
  3. freaksho

    freaksho Supporting Member

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    i usually change power tubes once a year whether they need it or not. but small tubes only when one goes bad. i practice twice per week and gig about once every month or two.
     
  4. welcometoashley

    welcometoashley Supporting Member

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    i don't switch my pre-amp tubes much, bu i switch my power tubes out about once a year. i push them pretty hard through an attenuator for long rehearsals and shows....
     
  5. Baminated

    Baminated Member

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    Mine last a while since I have been using a solid state rig for my gig-whore stuff, and save the tube amps for special orginal gigs or recordings. Not burning my tubes up or getting road rash on the tolex for these peeps !! I Quit !
     
  6. benabloom

    benabloom Member

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    I have been using Marconi 6V6G tubes in by 70's deluxe reverb and just swapped em out after about 3+ years of heavy use ( and tortured at 440 plate voltage too) I gig about 4 times a week plus rehearsals for that whole time.. They just started sounding thin and losing low end in the last few weeks!

    But.. for new production tubes on some of my other amps I am lucky to get a year out of em..

    B
     
  7. LSchefman

    LSchefman Member

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    I've found EL84s go pretty quickly; a couple of years at best with my studio usage. 6L6 and EL34s, I've had 'em go 4-5 years or more without noticeable tone loss in most amps, and heck, the ones that came new in my '68 BF Bassman went for over a decade and I never changed 'em. Maybe I should have, but WTF did anyone know about tone in the 70s? ;)

    In any event, I see no reason to change a good set of tubes.
     
  8. soundchaser59

    soundchaser59 Thank You Great Spirit! Silver Supporting Member

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    I got about 500+ hours out of a pair of Tung Sol 6V6's. These were the ones that they said could handle the higher plate voltages that the newer amps seem to demand. I rarely cranked it up loud, but I used the amp 2-3 hours 5 or 6 days a week maybe.....

    Didn't get anywhere near that from the JJ EL84's I had in the other amp, was lucky to get half that. Now I got some NOS Fender 84's in there, we'll see.........
     
  9. jjhaller

    jjhaller Supporting Member

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    I replace the EL84's in my Budda SD-30 every 6 months or so when I notice the amp getting a little soft sounding.
     
  10. XmasTree

    XmasTree Member

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    i burned out a set of JJ EL84s in my Bugera V22 in only 8 months.
    i played it everyday for at least 2 hours.
    ...sometimes i left the amp on (standby) for a while in between.

    i (might have) had the amp biased slightly hot, if at all.
     
  11. gixxerrock

    gixxerrock Member

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    Varies greatly, but ballpark for me is a year on power tubes, and five years on preamp tubes. Usually it is just 1 tube that starts going and I end up swapping out more than I need to.
     
  12. shanesiegle

    shanesiegle Supporting Member

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    when I was gigging four to ten times a month and two-three hour rehearsals a week I would do them once a year without fail for the power tubes. Now that I'm practicing at lower levels and only gigging once a month at most I can usually go a couple years without an issue so far. Preamp tubes I leave in until there is an issue.
     
  13. Tuberoast

    Tuberoast Member

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    My preamp tubes last until they fail, the old stock ones last 10 times longer than any new ones I've tried. Output tubes, old stock...last several years. I play two-three weekends per month and at least 10 hours practice per week.
    I have a SECO tube tester to check them.
     
  14. jamison162

    jamison162 Member

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    Orange Rockerverb 50 (4x6V6), I use the amp 3-5 hrs. per week. Running EH 6V6's biased at 23mA, 400Vp (65%); I get 12-18 months out of them. In fact, just retubed and it was definitely sounded blah. New tubes sound soo nice!!!!!
     

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