Question: How Do I Know If My Tubes Are Bad?

What does a bad tube sound like?

Preamp Tubes.

Preamp tubes usually cause problems through noise or microphonics.

If noise, you will hear hiss, crackling, popping or similar issues.

If you hear squeal, hum or feedback, it is typically a microphonic tube.

Noise from microphonic tubes will typically increase with a volume increase..

Which 12ax7 sounds best?

Best 12AX7 For Audio Genalex Gold Lion ECC83/B749 is the ultimate in current production 12AX7. Gold Lion ECC83 delivers a full sonic range with excellent articulation. Like all Gold Lion Tubes, Gold Lion ECC83 is built with meticulous quality, which makes it ideal as the premium upgrade for any audio 12AX7 application.

What do bad preamp tubes sound like?

Problems with preamp tubes are often due to microphonics and noise issues. … All tubes will amplify tapping to some degree but an unusable tube will be very loud and often feedback or squeal. In a guitar amp with many preamp tubes it can be difficult to determine which one is microphonic.

Are amp tubes supposed to glow?

A: That blue glow is just a side effect of a power tube — a fluorescent glow in the blue spectrum. The tube is fine! It actually indicates that the vacuum inside the tube is very good, which is what allows this phenomenon to occur. It will not have any effect on the performance or tone of the amp.

Why is my tube amp crackling?

Is the amp making crackling or popping noises when you’re not playing? If so, this is can be caused by faulty preamp or power tubes. … If no tube substitution alleviates the problem, the amp will need to be serviced, because there’s a good chance it has a failing plate or cathode resistor in the preamp.

Can you put any tubes in a tube amp?

Amps are designed to use specific power tubes (for example, EL34 or 6V6) and are not compatible with other types of power tubes without serious circuit modifications. … Also, remember that in many amps, the power tubes are designed to work in pairs. It’s best to replace both tubes in this case.

Do power tubes affect sound?

Sometimes a power tube may glow blue inside. It has no effect on the sound. This phenomenon only happens in a tube with better-than-average vacuum (pure). Therefore, the tube is actually a better-quality tube!

How long do amp tubes last?

Tube Life Span If you play at moderate levels, 10-15 hours a week… Preamp Tubes are generally at their best 2 – 3 years. Power Tubes are generally at their best 1 – 1.5 years.

How long do 12au7 tubes last?

between 5,000 and 10,000 hoursTube Life. Small signal tubes like 12AX7 and 12AU7 typically last between 5,000 and 10,000 hours. You don’t need a tube tester to determine if your tubes need replacing. Simply plug in a new pair and let them settle in for at least 100 hours.

How long do ear tubes last?

Usually, ear tubes stay in the eardrum for six to nine months and then fall out on their own. Sometimes, a tube doesn’t fall out and needs to be surgically removed. In some cases, the ear tube falls out too soon, and another needs to be put in.

Do preamp tubes need to be biased?

With preamp tubes, you don’t need to worry about things like biasing or using matched pairs as you do with power tubes. As long as your new tube is the same model as what you’re replacing (12AX7, 12AT7, 6SN7, etc.), you’re good.

How do I know when my tubes need replacing?

A: These are the most common signs that tubes need replacement: Excessive noise (hiss, hum) including squealing or microphonic tubes. Loss of high end. … A muddy bottom end; Sounds like there is too much bass and note clarity is lost. Erratic changes in the overall volume. … The amp doesn’t work!

How often do tubes need to be replaced?

Some guitarists religiously replace the tubes in their amps every two years; others never do so, or not until the amp takes a vow of silence.