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difference between a 12AX7 and a 12AY7 tube?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by djshawn47, Mar 1, 2006.

  1. Would someone please explain the difference between a 12AX7 and a 12AY7 tube to me? Please feel free to be as detailed a possible. I didn’t know if should stick this in the effects section because ultimately my question is what would the sonic differences be between the two in an overdrive pedal. I figured since tubes are used more in preamps…someone here in the amps section may be able to shed some light.

  2. AlembicPlayer

    AlembicPlayer Im not wearing shorts

    Aug 15, 2004
    Pacific Northwet, USA
  3. BbbyBld


    Oct 13, 2005
    Meridian, MS
    In a nutshell, the 12AX7 has a higher mu or amplification factor, which means it has the potential for more gain, but it has a higher plate resistance than the 12AY7, so the 12AY7 could provide a little more drive current.
  4. So if the 12AX7 has a higher gain how does adding another tube factor in?

    Would two 12AY7s provide more gain than one 12AX7? I'm trying to udnerstand the logic.

    How would one 12AX7 compare to two 12AY7s?

  5. WalterBush


    Feb 27, 2005
    Yuma, Az
    Full disclosure, I'm a certified Fender technician working in a music store that carries Fender, Yamaha, and Ibanez products among others.
    The answer to your question depends entirely on the circuit itself. How, specifically, were you planning on adding another tube to an overdrive pedal?

  6. To answer that question basically takes this thread to the pedal forum....which i will go to....I am trying to compare a pedal with one 12AX7 to a pedal with 2 12AY7s and i cant test them both out, so i want to try and figure out which one would have more gain based on the specs. I'll be in effects.....