Gretsch Amps

Matched Quad 6L6GC suggestions please…

1

What is the current state of the world for buying a matched Quad of 6L6GC?

Any bad experiences?

Any rather good ones?

I have a matched Quad in my Supplies, Sovtek from more than a decade ago.

Need other thoughts...Thx

2

Myself and the two techs I frequent have had great succes with TAD's tubes. I think their selection process might be a little more rigourous than others, very low failure rate. Worth the little extra they cost in my own experience.

3

Curious what the quad is running

Twin Showman Quad Super Six

or maybe somethin' else.

4

These are as good as it gets today. If you have a ten year old set...that's even better.

5

That's my opinion, too.

They are for the Gretsch Super Bass in my other thread...

Those in your photo are the 5881 size?, hard to read the numbers in the picture...WXT+?

I have a Quad of the 6L6WXT+, they are longer?, bit more output.

I have used them for years in the CVR, very happy with them.

6

+1 on TAD's. Always my 1st choice.

7

amplified parts is runnin sales...take a look at jj matched quad...they are sturdy 6l6's..and amplified parts/antique electronics supply has good return system, in case you have problems with a tube

jj is the last tube manufacturer in eastern europe..the rest are mike matthews/eh russian made or chinese..tad just sources chinese tubes and test them to their spec..then rebrands

cheers

ps- sovteks always had a bit of hair on em...little bit of grind...jj's can stay clean (like old usa GE 6l6's) until pushed harder...depends what type of tone you're after

8

The best set of new production tubes I’ve used we’re the old “Winged C” Svetlanas, made before the company sold. Pretty awsome. Expensive now but worth looking into.

Tempted to try the new Tung Sols. Their 6V6s sound really nice in Fender tweeds. A buddy of mine seems to go thru a lot of TADs. Rubys blow. Never been a fan of JJs, had a lot fail on me.

The Sovtecs seem to be the old trusty. Very sturdy, found in many new amps. I just don’t like how they sound.

Can’t beat a quad of NOS USA. Expensive, but hey.......You seem to be putting a lot of time and effort into rebuilding the amp.

9

I have that old pair of Winged C I showed you at the RoundUp. I put those back in the CVR Stack...

I played the amp with a few newer guitars and the Jack Bass, ... sounded great.

Probably a few years since swapping for swapping's sake...I prefer the Sovtek 6L6WXT+. Those guitars I acquired early on after having the amp, and having modded it back a more calm level of excitement and touch sensitivity, are what my ear likes.

I'll get a good test with the Sovtek 6L6WXT+...I can easily try a new Quad of current production Tubes.

The Tech told me a good story of how a local Carson City businessman bought all the old RCA Black Plate Production Gear. Got it up and running, then folded.

Those Tubes are an enigma, supposedly blessed!

10

over time, i liked two kindsa tubes over all the rest...(depending on the application...vox/fender)....mullards and GE's...

i have well used mullards that are over 50 years old...and still can sing!

mullard (founded in 1920!) old wwII uk tech!!! never bested!!

(tho no connection to the current mullard tubes)

cheers

11

Sadly, tubes/valves are an over 100 year old technology, that's been getting scarcer for the last 50 years. If you find some good ones, hang on to them. The market for them is really small---and getting smaller.

12

"Tempted to try the new Tung Sols. Their 6V6s sound really nice in Fender tweeds."

I really like the new Tung-Sols, both the 6V6 and 6L6 (also my current favorite 12AX7).

For anyone looking to get a little more stiffness/headroom/volume out of a 6V6 amp, try the JJs... they are like a "mini 6L6" instead of a normal 6V6...

13

I had a pair of decade old Tung-Sol 12AX7 in my spares as well, those will be the Pre-Amp tubes for the first trials once the Amp is done refurbishment...

And I am letting this Tech do his thing, we have a good rapport. As I mentioned before, this Amp is in just great condition cosmetically....Museum quality.

It is another "pay it forward" Music gear expense for me. I am sure it will be more $$$ than I might have initially expected.

In the end it could be Fender Bassman alternative for all the Brian Setzer wannabees, just add in a Tavo Mystery Brain instead of a Space Echo....(joke)!

It certainly will be my "this one goes to 11".

The Tech made his own joke about the Amp coming into the market just in time for "The Summer of Love"...

14

"Tempted to try the new Tung Sols. Their 6V6s sound really nice in Fender tweeds."

I really like the new Tung-Sols, both the 6V6 and 6L6 (also my current favorite 12AX7).

For anyone looking to get a little more stiffness/headroom/volume out of a 6V6 amp, try the JJs... they are like a "mini 6L6" instead of a normal 6V6...

– ruger9

The nomenclature of the the JJ tubes in question is tricky. They make a 6V6 and a 6V6S. The latter is not the plural of the former, but the fact that it reads pretty much the same way can make searches difficult.

They're a LITTLE like a 6L6; more girth and headroom than a 6V6, but still with plenty of 6V6 character. Depends on the circuit, the bias, the speaker(s), the preamp tubes, the rectifier, the guitar, and the alignment of the stars. I run 'em in a BF Deluxe Reverb with a Celestion Vintage 30, and it's oodles louder than the average bear.

15

JJ's are still the worst tubes ever made by anyone, anywhere, ever. Some of them work, but it's not worth the risk. Many of the Russian-made Sovteks are made in China. They all say Made in Russia, so you have to recognize the construction to tell what's what. Some of the current Chinese tubes are very good. All of the fancy name brands are made by Sovtek, and they're not as good as the regular inexpensive OEM type Sovteks. EH is complete garbage.

16

JJ's are still the worst tubes ever made by anyone, anywhere, ever. Some of them work, but it's not worth the risk. Many of the Russian-made Sovteks are made in China. They all say Made in Russia, so you have to recognize the construction to tell what's what. Some of the current Chinese tubes are very good. All of the fancy name brands are made by Sovtek, and they're not as good as the regular inexpensive OEM type Sovteks. EH is complete garbage.

– Billy Zoom

Billy I always enjoy your inisight and lessons on tube tech and electronics. When you say EH is garbage what exactly do you mean. The reliability, the tone, or?

I literally know nothing about tubes and I have three EH powered amps, only one sounds good at least to my taste (Blues JR IV) the other two are slated for sale because I’ve never gotten the tone I want

Anyhow any details on the suckage of EH would be appreciated. Thanks

17

I came across a huge box of audio tubes, that belonged to a deceased guitar tech. It has several dozen 6L6GC military grade Soviet tubes in it, all in matched pair and quad sets. It also has a ton of 12AX7 and 12AT7 tubes in it. I've given a lot of them away, but I've kept enough to keep myself in replacement tubes for years.

I used Sovtech tubes, with good results. They're very sturdy and reliable tubes.

18

My experience with an Apex matched TAD 6L6 pair in a Carr Rambler is just like that of Walter. Excellent full, round tone in both pentode and triode mode with an extremely low noise floor permitting me to enhance the amp's tone with a couple of NOS preamp tube swaps.

Neatone's right. Check out Amplified Parts in Phoenix, AZ for discounts.

https://www.amplifiedparts....

Great service from these guys too. And, yes, of NOS power tubes, GE and Mullards have always sounded best to me.

Like Billy, I've never found a JJ Tube that I liked and believe me, I've tried.

19

I am going down to the Shop to refurb the inside damping and bottom Tolex seams on the speaker enclosure on Tuesday.

I'll take some pictures, will be spending a 1/2 day there.

The owner has had a few cool vintage guitars on the wall that have been put right, ...the shop also teaches anybody to build their own guitar or similar instrument.

Hoping this thing is ready for a Round-Up!

20

As an amp repair guy, my opinions are based on reliability, proper function, and longevity. Tone is subjective. JJ has by far the poorest quality control...I would reject 90% of them. They cause more amp problems than any other brand...sometimes really strange problems that don't seem tube related. EH has about a 60% failure rate within the first hour of use. Their power tubes tend to die after about a month of use. I have boxes of new JJ's & EH that I won't sell to anyone. I've lost a lot of money on them. I have a large quantity of EH 12AX7's that have the 2nd half dead, although the first triode section works fine. I have a quantity of EH EL34's that test fine, but will fade away after about 2 hrs of use. I'm critical because I've had to eat it on a lot of new tubes. The Sovtek Mullards & Sovtek TungSols seem to work OK, although they're noisy and sort of brutish. Sovtek 12AX7LP's have straight filaments and will hum badly unless you have a DC filament supply...not normally found in guitar amps, the Sovtek 12AX7LPS's have spiral filiments to cancel hum, but they cannot handle any positive voltage on the cathodes, and so cannot be used as Cathode Followers or Cathodyne phase splitters etc. With positive cathode voltage, they will fail almost immediately. Generally speaking, regular Sovteks like 12AX7wa, or Sovtek 5881's are pretty much bulletproof, which is why most manufacturers use them. Regular Sovtek EL84's are good, but the EL84M's have been a disaster since they ran out of NOS Soviet military and tried making them themselves. Prior to that, they were the best. Also, all manufacturers descriptions of their various tube types are complete BS, much like descriptions of guitar speaker tones.

21

Hey BZ thanks for this rundown of what the scene is now.


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