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SVT Power tube's

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by fitz420, Mar 20, 2014.

  1. fitz420

    fitz420 Knows Lows

    Oct 6, 2008
    Pittsburgh, PA
    I have done some searching and wanted to get some opinions. It is time for new power tubes in my SVT. I would love to go the NOS route or buy some original Winged C's. Given the recent prices, that isn't gonna happen.

    Out of all of the current production 6550's, in the reasonable price range, ie Tung Sol, JJ, etc, is there a clear winner?

    Just want some opinions and info from those who have used the recent stuff.
  2. DRafalske


    Nov 6, 2008
    Hebron, KY
    I re-tubed my 2008 SVT CL a couple months ago. Replaced what I believe to be the original Sovteks with new JJ's.
    I bought my amp used so I can't speak to what the Sovteks sounded like new. The amp sounds better to my ears after the change, but I changed preamp and driver tubes at the same time (all JJ) so that may be what I'm hearing.
  3. StuartV

    StuartV Finally figuring out what I really like Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2006
    Manassas, VA
    On the advice of johnk_10, I went with Valve Art KT88-VA (KT100) tubes in my vintage SVT.


    John told me they were the current production tubes closest in sound to the original tubes that came in vintage SVTs that he has tried.

    I think they are GREAT! And reasonably priced, too.

    And BOI were great to deal with, too. Excellent customer service.
  4. StuartV

    StuartV Finally figuring out what I really like Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2006
    Manassas, VA
    ps. their site only lists matched pairs and matched quads, but when you order, you can just order 3 x matched pairs and specify you want a matched sextet.
  5. fitz420

    fitz420 Knows Lows

    Oct 6, 2008
    Pittsburgh, PA
    What about the valve art 6550's? Has anyone used those. I do remember john talking about the kt88's.

    Does anyone have an opinion Chinese vs Russian tubes. Seems like the valve arts get pretty good reviews everywhere. I have EHX power tubes in now and they honestly haven't lasted very long.
  6. beans-on-toast

    beans-on-toast Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2008
    Generally, if you are looking at what is available from a particular seller, you usually pay for what you are getting. The ones that cost more are often better. Sometimes the more popular ones cost more because there is less supply. That can tell you what is most popular.

    It comes down to who you are buying the tubes from. A good place will burn them in before matching them. So if you buy Chineses or Russian products, if they are well tested, you don't have that to worry about. Deal with a reputable seller that stands behind their products with a warranty.

    Finally, tubes sound and perform differently. Some will be better in your SVT than others. The problem with going with which is better, Tung-Sol, JJ, or Sovtek, etc. is that what was sold a year ago may not be the same tube that is sold today. The name might be the same but the product may not be. They change designs, find ways to cut corners in production, etc. Things change.

    Buy the best ones that you can afford from a good tube seller. I've heard good things about the latest Tung-Sol 6550. I haven't tried them myself.
  7. I have had many power tubes in my SVT-CL. The best-sounding so far: JJ KT-88's I got from Euro Tubes.
  8. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    The JJ 6550's ain't too bad either.