New Tubes for Maz 18R - What's best for longevity?

bt2513

Member
Messages
859
Hi all,

I've got an old Maz 18R - probably from 2002-2004. My most recent retube was several years ago with JJs all around. I never really run the amp very hot so the JJs lasted me a while until the other night at rehearsal. I noticed V6 was glowing bright yellow compared to the others and there was a lot of white noise/hiss coming from the amp. Its time for new tubes...

I was happy with the JJs but haven't purchased tubes in quite a while. I don't need a ton of headroom and don't want to spend more than $120 or so total. My main goal is to get something that sounds decent that will last a while - maybe a nice set of NOS EL84's for that purpose.

Do I need a complete retube? My initial thoughts were just replace the input/preamp to something nice and get a nice pair of EL84's. I have a spare rectifier I could swap in for now if needed.
 

nateco

Member
Messages
3,556
Having owned Maz amps for 10+ years, I wouldn't spend big money on el84's. They don't last in these amps.

Spending some time tube rolling V1 is worthwhile. Lots of Nos and aNos options.

The rest of the pre amp tubes, I'd just go with what the Dr ships in them....hard to beat the 12ax7lps for a PI.
 

Dan40

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,552
If the glow is yellow then that is just the tube heater filament glow and doesn't indicate a problem necessarily. Some tube's heaters will glow brighter than others and that is perfectly normal. If you notice the plate structure inside the tube turning red then you have a problem. Now if you have been using the EL84's for several years then yes, it couldn't hurt to replace them with a fresh set. It just depends on how much usage you have put on them over the years. Your preamp tubes may likely be just fine as they will last several times longer than the power tubes.

A far as longevity goes, you will get a hundred different answers on which tubes are better than others. Like any electrical device, a tube can fail at any time whether it's brand new or several years old. I do prefer the older production tubes myself as they seem to last much longer and sound better to my ears.
 

S. S. Bender

Member
Messages
2,473
Having owned Maz amps for 10+ years, I wouldn't spend big money on el84's. They don't last in these amps.

Spending some time tube rolling V1 is worthwhile. Lots of Nos and aNos options.

The rest of the pre amp tubes, I'd just go with what the Dr ships in them....hard to beat the 12ax7lps for a PI.
This is good advice.
 

ddog

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
538
Id just go with the electro/harm's...as poster said they typically don't last because of plate voltage is very high....
 






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