Pre amp tubes or power tubes.Tone?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Sean French, Sep 14, 2008.

Which tube impacts tone more?

  1. pre's

  2. power

Multiple votes are allowed.
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  1. Sean French

    Sean French Supporting Member

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    In general which do you feel has the largest impact on an amps tone.
    Pre amp tubes or the power tubes?
    Discuss.
     
  2. Blue Strat

    Blue Strat Member

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    Both equally. It may tilt slightly one way or the other depending on the particular amp.
     
  3. Timbre Wolf

    Timbre Wolf GoldMember Supporter Gold Supporting Member

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    Just to augment Mike's reply - the answer is not dependent upon our opinions in this poll, but rather on the amp design and how a player uses it.

    I say BOTH.

    - T
     
  4. sniffyduke

    sniffyduke Member

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    I really can't comment. Mike's in here. He would know better than I.

    They all are imp. But I think V1 in your preamp will affect your tone alot.
    Also don't overlook your Phase Inverter. This tube breaks down at diff rates depending on the tube. This will affect your output Gain/Headroom

    It depends how you run your amp.

    Mike, if I'm off please correct me.:)
     
  5. midnightlaundry

    midnightlaundry Member

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    For me, I stick with 1 brand of power tubes. So, pre's offer the most color change. But then again, I only really use 1 brand/model of pre... :D
     
  6. TubezAmpz

    TubezAmpz Member

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    Both.... could not pick one. Depends on the amp and the type of sound you're going for. Metal amps would be heavily dependent on preamp tubes... blues and rock tones are sometimes more dependant on power tube tones. As for the rest of it... who knows...
     
  7. photios

    photios Member

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    +1 both
     
  8. JimmyD

    JimmyD Member

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    I agree with Mike. It depends on the amp. I went from El-34s to 6ca7s and it wasn't much a dealio. Another amp went from JJ6L6's to Winged C's and it was like, whoa, much creamier.

    Preamp tubes obviously different gain, shades of lightness/darkness and that "X" factor.


    jim
     
  9. waxnsteel

    waxnsteel Member

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    That's it right there. Rarely is there a huge change in character when swapping tubes. You may get a "brighter" "Darker" "deeper" difference, but it's not always repeatable, and certainly not repeatable in every circuit.

    You could very well have an amp which shows as great a difference from swapping preamp tubes as swapping power tubes. IME, these changes are very minor when compared to changing types of pickups (humbucker to single) or speakers ("British voiced" to "American voiced") or even cabinet designs.
     
  10. mattthefiddler

    mattthefiddler Member

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    "You could very well have an amp which shows as great a difference from swapping preamp tubes as swapping power tubes. IME, these changes are very minor when compared to changing types of pickups (humbucker to single) or speakers ("British voiced" to "American voiced") or even cabinet designs."

    or eq-ing between stages
     
  11. sniffyduke

    sniffyduke Member

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    Try both pre and output.:)
     
  12. Sean French

    Sean French Supporting Member

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    Not really intended for me to get input on which tubes to change in a paticlar amp.
    Just opinions on which may or may not have the largest tonal impact.
    Was thinking about a poll as I never have started one and this is the only thing I could think of at the time.:bong
     
  13. Freedom

    Freedom Member

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    I'd start from the pre tubes...
     
  14. Guinness Lad

    Guinness Lad Silver Supporting Member

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    My Clubman is probably more preamp based while my Tone King is more power amp, I defy anyone to say one is better then the other. I say it's a standoff.
     
  15. FrankieSixxxgun

    FrankieSixxxgun Member

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    Both have a large impact on the tone. If you're asking about overdriven characteristics, then it depends on the type of music being played. Classic rock and blues rock generally sound best, to me, with overdriven power tubes. Modern rock and metal generally sound better with overdriven preamp tubes. I personally prefer power tube saturation.
     
  16. bunuel

    bunuel Member

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    Although I used to think only pres mattered, I'm now in the "both" category after having retubed many of my favorite amps. I've been quite pleasantly surprised how much of difference a sweet set of power tubes improved upon amps that I already adored.
     
  17. nomadh

    nomadh Member

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    I say neither matter much. Maybe the speaker a bit. Sometimes if you're lucky the player matters somewhat. What the hell am I doing here with all you tone whores :)
     

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