Just put Mullard EL-84s in Bruno Underground...WOW!!!

Mad John

Member
Messages
696
My Bruno Underground has been my main amp in the studio these past four years. I use all NOS tubes, but have had mainly "American" tubes in the amp - RCA AX7s and 5 GE EL84s.

I just put in a quad or Mullard EL84s and I could not believe the tonal difference! There is less head room. The Underground starts to break up a bit at 10-11:00, where with the Genral Electrics, about 1:00 to break up.

But the Mullards clearly have a richer tone! They sound more complex and yet still have chime and sparkle.

I feel that the Underground 30 sounds like the famous Mythological amp that it was rummored to sound like, due to rare availability outside of New York (new ones.)

I would say the amp has jumped up 45 percent in tone, meaning it is THAT much MORE of an amp with these power tubes in it! It makes my Stratocasters (Ron Ellis PUs) sound much more organic and present! I am getting more use out of rolling volume back on my guitar and still maintaining full rich tone with bite and chime!
Who could ask for anything more?:peenut
So I just had to share with you all this (to me) amazing tonal discovery!

Mullard El84 in quad (4) go for over $400! So I never even tried...I had GEs, I thought how much better could the Mullards pound for pound (or dollar for dollar) be than what I alreadt have.

The GEs cost me $250 and they have been well worth it...not causing any problems for four years of constant studio work!

I got the Mullards for $98.00! :eeks

Needless to say, I am very very happy with my tone on the Bruno!

Cheers mates,
 

Mark Barna

Member
Messages
1,091
Hmm. I put Mullard EL84 reissues in mine and it didn't sound any different than the JJs it came with. I guess the reissues don't come close to the NOS.
 

Blue Strat

Member
Messages
30,182
Hmm. I put Mullard EL84 reissues in mine and it didn't sound any different than the JJs it came with. I guess the reissues don't come close to the NOS.
None of the "reissues" are really REISSUES, just new Russian tubes with an old name printed on them.

For less than half of the normal NOS Mullard price the NOS Tungsrams come VERY close to the same tone.
 

Mad John

Member
Messages
696
A quad of NOS Mullards for under 100 dollars.


Sure - I believe it............ :brick
Hey, don't start calling me a liar Stratobuc....it happens that I scored twice!

I quad for $119.00 (currently in amp now kicking serious ASS) and another for $98.00!

I have never shown any false intentions ever since I have been a member here, so have some respect for others who are telling it like it is!
 

Timbre Wolf

Hyperspatial Gravity Surfer
Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
10,004
I'm happy to hear of such a tonal revelation.

I'm also glad Mike mentioned Tungsram EL84. In my experience, I prefer Tungsram to '60s Mullard. And Tungsram are less expensive. I recommend a set for when those Mullards are exhausted.

- Thom
 

Morgan24

Member
Messages
497
Everytime I have changed power tubes out with expensive NOS I have heard a difference but it has always been to a very little degree. I would say you get a bigger difference changing preamp tubes for NOS even though the difference is still subtle!!
 

aT19er

Member
Messages
344
Wow, that's a hellova score on those tubes! I've always wanted to try Mullards in a Marshall. I've also always wanted a Marshall.
 

rockon1

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
13,095
Everytime I have changed power tubes out with expensive NOS I have heard a difference but it has always been to a very little degree. I would say you get a bigger difference changing preamp tubes for NOS even though the difference is still subtle!!
I have to agree -especially if you dont like power tube saturation. I prefer headroom in my powersection. Heck I just switched to sovtek EL84M's in my latest tube head for more headroom /less breakup. They get a bad rap usually but I like them. :) Bob
 

Mad John

Member
Messages
696
I'm happy to hear of such a tonal revelation.

I'm also glad Mike mentioned Tungsram EL84. In my experience, I prefer Tungsram to '60s Mullard. And Tungsram are less expensive. I recommend a set for when those Mullards are exhausted.

- Thom
Thank you Thom! I must get a set of those Tungsram soon!
 

GT100

Member
Messages
3,833
I miss EI EL84's. Those were some great sounding EL84's!
Really ?
I've got a pair around somewhere that I tried in my Guytron years ago.
I'm sure they have almost no hours on them...

Lloyd
 

Aran

Member
Messages
3,193
A quad of NOS Mullards for under 100 dollars.


Sure - I believe it............ :brick
I just bought a pair of Sylvania 6L6GC for $50. Of course it was from a friend and he still made money on them. He bought a bunch of them knew. ;)
 

Stratobuc

Member
Messages
15,922
Hey, don't start calling me a liar Stratobuc....it happens that I scored twice!

I quad for $119.00 (currently in amp now kicking serious ASS) and another for $98.00!

I have never shown any false intentions ever since I have been a member here, so have some respect for others who are telling it like it is!

Where do you get NOS Mullards for that price?
 

kanegon

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
477
The RI Mullard 12ax7s are terrible. There, I said it. I'm sure the NOS el84s are better.
 

tejastubes

Member
Messages
1,278
My Bruno Underground has been my main amp in the studio these past four years. I use all NOS tubes, but have had mainly "American" tubes in the amp - RCA AX7s and 5 GE EL84s.

I just put in a quad or Mullard EL84s and I could not believe the tonal difference! There is less head room. The Underground starts to break up a bit at 10-11:00, where with the Genral Electrics, about 1:00 to break up.

But the Mullards clearly have a richer tone! They sound more complex and yet still have chime and sparkle.

I feel that the Underground 30 sounds like the famous Mythological amp that it was rummored to sound like, due to rare availability outside of New York (new ones.)

I would say the amp has jumped up 45 percent in tone, meaning it is THAT much MORE of an amp with these power tubes in it! It makes my Stratocasters (Ron Ellis PUs) sound much more organic and present! I am getting more use out of rolling volume back on my guitar and still maintaining full rich tone with bite and chime!
Who could ask for anything more?:peenut
So I just had to share with you all this (to me) amazing tonal discovery!

Mullard El84 in quad (4) go for over $400! So I never even tried...I had GEs, I thought how much better could the Mullards pound for pound (or dollar for dollar) be than what I alreadt have.

The GEs cost me $250 and they have been well worth it...not causing any problems for four years of constant studio work!

I got the Mullards for $98.00! :eeks

Needless to say, I am very very happy with my tone on the Bruno!

Cheers mates,

I love the Tundsram el84's also,,,great rock and roll tube. Cant help but think that this drastic difference in headroom might be in part due to the inherent mA draw on those Mullards you got vs the draw on the GE's?
 

guitarcapo

Senior Member
Messages
2,328
I've tried NOS Mullards in a few of my amps and not heard any difference over modern tubes.

I seriously just don't get it. I don't ever want to bother TRYING to get it.


A long time ago I was in a music store and there was this Egnater Rebel 20 head there. It had four power tubes in it. A pair of EL84 and a pair of 6V6. There was this little knob on the front that could blend between these two totally different sets of power tube.

I spent a half hour with a guitar plugged in turning that knob back and forth between not only two different BRANDS of tube...but two totally different TYPE power tubes.

I swear that knob might has well been just disconnected and there for show for all the difference I heard.

That was MY major revelation. If I couldn't hear a difference there...what was NOS vs. Modern of the same model tube going to do?

BTW check out the second half of this YOUTUBE demo of Bruce himself having trouble demonstrating this feature, sort of apologizing, and saying vague stuff like how you WOULD hear a difference if the amp was cranked (but he doesn't follow through) and that the difference is subtle.. and then sort of can't find the right word for what it does to the sound etc....



I see threads like these and am suspicious of all the enthusiasm. It seems a bit forced to me. Like someone trying to convince themselves that they didn't waste money on snake oil.

But by all means if it floats your boat, have at it. I have cheaper ways to get my sound. I've always felt I can get more results swapping out a 50 cent capacitor value in a strategic location inside the amp than the entire sweep of tubes out there.
 
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Timbre Wolf

Hyperspatial Gravity Surfer
Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
10,004
I seriously just don't get it. I don't ever want to bother TRYING to get it.
Why all the anger, bro? Don't you have something better to do than waste your time with idiots like us, who can't trust our own ears? :messedup
 

alamere

Member
Messages
1,559
I've tried NOS Mullards in a few of my amps and not heard any difference over modern tubes.

I seriously just don't get it. I don't ever want to bother TRYING to get it.

I see threads like these and am suspicious of all the enthusiasm. It seems a bit forced to me. Like someone trying to convince themselves that they didn't waste money on snake oil.
Somewhat strange response to this thread in my opinion...
To each his own I guess.

Different tubes certainly make a big difference that can be seen and that you can feel in any decent tube amp. Whether you can tell or not, that may be a different story? The same can be said about different pups, strings, etc. I've had people ask why I always change the pickups in my guitars and the truth is that it makes a big difference to me.

That being said, I've always felt that the difference with Fender amps was one I could feel as much or more than I could hear... The difference in Vox or Vox inspired amps in my opinion is WAY more dramatic.

Maybe it's a cathode biased thing?? Maybe the amp is using every bit of those tubes or something... but the last couple of times I've changed tubes in my Vox amps I couldn't believe the difference. Really surprising sometimes for sure!!
 
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