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What 12AX7 and 12AT7 will go with an RCA 6L6 Blackplate for Fender tone?

Joost Assink

Member
Messages
1,157
Ok, thanks for all the great suggestions in my other thread. Now I need to find a great match for the RCA 6L6 Black Plate Power tube in the preamp and reverb stages.

So what's the best 12AX7 and 12AT7 to go with the RCA?

Mercury Tubes:
V3: comes with Groove Tubes 12AX7 for Reverb return and mix

V2: Comes with Electro-Harmonix 12AT7 for Reverb send

V1: Comes with Electro-Harmonix 12AX7 for Initial gain stage, post tone-stack recovery


Searching didn't do much for me.

I think the reverb is a bit too wet too soon (think surf-city) so I'd like tubes for the reverb circuit to fix that.
 
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jcs

Member
Messages
8,086
why that would be rca 12at7 and 12ax7! actually they are great warm tubes but not super gainy like some other 12ax7 can be.
 

Blue Strat

Member
Messages
30,202
why that would be rca 12at7 and 12ax7! actually they are great warm tubes but not super gainy like some other 12ax7 can be.

+1.

Though you could easily "get away with" GE 12AX7s and a Mullard CV4024/12AT7. Some actually prefer these...there's no consensus.
 

rockon1

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
13,195
These! RCA blackplate 12AX7's of course!

 
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Blue Strat

Member
Messages
30,202
These! RCA blackplate 12AX7's of coarse!
Sorry Bob, I just can't help myself any longer.

Coarse: Refers to roughness, like sandpaper.

Course: Is the version you're using in your post.

As you were. :D Feel free to flame my bad grammar, spelling and lack of punctuation. ;)
 

jcs

Member
Messages
8,086
tubes are sort of like spices in foods, it pays to experiment with different combinations.

some 12ax7 have quicker breakup and are darker and gainy (rft).

i have these nos westinghouse square getter 12ax7 (that look similar to sylvania in some ways) these tubes have ample gain with a biting top end.

amperex bugle boy seem to always have more harmonics and overtones with plenty of gain ,theres a reason why they are priced so high they are outstanding tubes imo,but if you have a lesser amp circuit and muddy pickups you may not get the full benefit from these imo..
 

Timbre Wolf

Hyperspatial Gravity Surfer
Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
10,090
tubes are sort of like spices in foods, it pays to experiment with different combinations.

some 12ax7 have quicker breakup and are darker and gainy (rft).

i have these nos westinghouse square getter 12ax7 (that look similar to sylvania in some ways) these tubes have ample gain with a biting top end.

amperex bugle boy seem to always have more harmonics and overtones with plenty of gain ,theres a reason why they are priced so high they are outstanding tubes imo,but if you have a lesser amp circuit and muddy pickups you may not get the full benefit from these imo..
I agree with you, on all points, about the character of these tubes. Good descriptions!

- Thom
 

devbro

Member
Messages
1,170
A good RCA blackplate 12AX7 will sound great as long as you can find a quiet one. The longer the plate, the more prone to noise they seem to be. The short grayplate ones sound good too but if you want quiet, nothing beats a RCA7027. You can sometimes find Fender branded 7027's pretty cheap and they are dead quiet and very warm.

Another option is a new production tube. I like the Tung Sol 12AX7 in vintage Fender amps. They are bright like a chinese tube but not brittle. They also break up nicely and from my experience are pretty quiet.
 

Timbre Wolf

Hyperspatial Gravity Surfer
Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
10,090
The short grayplate ones sound good too but if you want quiet, nothing beats a RCA7027.
RCA 7025?

Is that a long black-plate 7025, long gray-plate 7025, or short gray-plate 7025 you're discussing? My guess is that its the latter, and I like those, too, out of the RCA 12AX7 types.

- Thom
 

Tramp

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
1,201
I had a NOS Brimar CV4004 in V1 of my Merc for a long time. When it went microphonic, I tried a Tung-Sol 12AX7 RI I had lying around and liked it, so have kept it in.

V2 is a Mullard CV4024. Great tube and still relatively affordable, especially for a Mullard. But it will make your reverb wetter than stock, so this may not be what you're looking for.

V3 is now a NOS JAN Philips 5751. I'm a big fan of this tube, a lower gain version of the 12AX7, still available and reasonable.

As I mentioned on the other thread, I've been running Blackplates in the Merc for nearly 4 years and will do so as long as my stash lasts!

Enjoy the quest!
 

Daniel-San

Member
Messages
178
I used the new Tung Sol 12AX7's and 12AT7's and liked them. Reminded me of RCA a bit and they're very quiet indeed. I've some Philips 12AT7's and GE JAN 12AX7's.
I now have the Tung Sol 12AX7's and the Philips AT7's in there.
 




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