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How long is the life span of tube amp? - Page 2

post #16 of 44
Len, do you think the 6N1P would work well in the Melos and EMP circuits in place of the 6DJ8/6922?
post #17 of 44
6N1P should work fine in either, but I don't know how good it'll sound. 6N1P is a more robust tube then the 6DJ8/ECC88 but is electrically similiar. Still a good idea to ask the manufacturer for their opinion and to see if it voids warranty.
post #18 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Len
It is INCREDIBLY rare for vintage tubes to lose vacuum. I have no hard statistics, but it'd be something in the order of 0.05%. I've literally handled thousands upon thousands of tubes made from the 1930s to 1980s. No vacuum is perfect, but tubes will easily last decades (and if I can extrapolate from what we know of tubes, likely centuries) without appreciable degradation. It's nothing I'd ever concern myself about.
let's see how they are in 25,00 years.. you really can't extrapolate life spans from current failure rates, because the getter flashing will become less and less effective as time passes. without hard specs on each tube's manufacturing process, approximate life spans are basically impossible to determine. as a tube lover, however, i'm not going to worry about it.
post #19 of 44
I'll bet you $100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.45 that thre will be at least one good working vacuum tube in 2,500 years. Now we just have to wait 'til 4505 to find out who wins.
post #20 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Len
I'll bet you $100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.45 that thre will be at least one good working vacuum tube in 2,500 years. Now we just have to wait 'til 4505 to find out who wins.
i would never take that bet, because i'm sure that there will be lots of tubes working then. all i'm saying is that the idea that unused tubes will last forever, or practically forever, is wrong. i hope to see you in 4505, though!
post #21 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Len
Most tube amps are easier to fix then solid state amps.

A good tube amp will last a lifetime, granted some parts may need replacing over time for best performance (coupling caps, resistors, sockets, diodes .... all universally available parts). Solid state parts don't last an eternity either.
This may be true but the plate voltages is what scares me.
post #22 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by canloader
This may be true but the plate voltages is what scares me.
Yeah, the plate voltage is significantly different. It might not work if either amp can't supply the voltage, but I'd be more concerned about the current draw being double that of a 6DJ8.
post #23 of 44
Sorry, but neither SS or tube amps will "...last forever...". Arguably, some the best-sounding amp designs fall the hardest and die the quickest. But, "Better to burn out than to fade away!", as they say. The amount of heat produced by a given circuit design is a big factor in the lifespan of any amp, but the hottest-running amps can also sound the best. "Pure Class A" amps, which sound very good to my ears, are notorious for running hot and dying out fast. But with most any amp: Capacitors can audibly degrade in 10 to 20 years. Switches wear and/or corrode with time. Internal Wiring corrodes. Tubes die. Etc, etc, etc... That's not to say that most any amplifier can't be rebuilt to spec, but by the time your (once new) amp degrades to the point that a substantial rebuild is needed it will probably be time to move on. Who knows - maybe the future of amplification will belong to the new breed of "Class T" (Tripath) amplifiers that are energy efficient, simple in design, and ultra-cool running.
post #24 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by diablo9
Are the tubes usually socket-inserted into amp PCB or soldered on it? that will make a lot of difference.
99% of the time they are inserted into sockets. So you just "plug-and-play" granted that you insert the right tubes. But I have seen at least one stupid design coming out of China where the tubes were soldered onto the board.

Quote:
Originally Posted by diablo9
And do you turn it off when not in use? I always leave my SS amp on even not in use. I thought turning on/off makes some impact on tube but tubes can also burn out with long time use. That's a dilemma...
Do some search. This topic has been discussed to death. Turning on and off a tube amp often will wear out the tube faster, but leaving it on 24/7 will also wear the tube. And then there's warm-up time required for gears to sound good (This applies to both SS and tube gears). The general consenses is that if you know you are going to be listening throughout the day, leave it on. If you are home, but won't be listening for a few hours, leave it on. If you are going out for more than x hour(s), turn it off. (Insert the number of hours you feel comfortable with. I turn mine off whenever I leave the house, no matter how long, for safety reasons.) Turn it off at night before you go to sleep.

Some of my tube gears have standby switches. So it's "partial" on just to keep the tubes warm. I only turn those units off when I know that I will not be listening for several days.

Quote:
Originally Posted by diablo9
I am considering a Chinese made G&W2.6F tube amp, I heard it's quite good, especially with Senns cans.
There are a lot of Chinese made amps. Most of them out of some DIY camp. I discover a new one every week. Quality varies from product to product. So make sure you like what you hear before you buy. But of course, the prices are usually dirt cheap, so it won't hurt so much if you ended up not liking it, or it breaks.
post #25 of 44
Thread Starter 
thanks Gundam, looks like you like Japan comics, too.

I haven't heard GW yet, but this is a very reputable piece in Chinese head-fi circle for a few years. I'll buy some tube amp kits from China and try assemble them, too.
post #26 of 44
I use a minty Fisher 800-B receiver (circa 1960) with 22 tubes, still running strong on all but one original tube; I think the replaced tube was changed in the early 70s. I note that the EM84A tuning eye tubes are extremely scare; although the pair I have are working fine, if anyone has a line on any more, please pm or e-mail me! Anyway, I don't turn the Fisher on for less than 2-3 hours at a time. FYI - I do the same thing with my Jolida JD-100 cpd that's one of the sources in my main system. I second the opinion that it's helpful to have a spare set of tubes on hand, which is no problem with the Jolida, esp. with my early tube rolling adventures.
post #27 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahn
but my melos manual said that ECC88 tubes should only last 1-2 years in the belly of the beast! we'll I'll ride em till the glass shatters, i'm sorta cheap like that! if they are "old" the tubes still perform perfectly, up to the fizzle date right? i mean, it acts more like a rechargeable battery and not an alkaline in that respect, analogy-wise?
The 6DJ8/ECC88 is the wimp of the family. You can use a 6922/E88CC or 7308/E188CC in a Melos, get great sound, and have a much more durable tube in the amp.
post #28 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hirsch
The 6DJ8/ECC88 is the wimp of the family. You can use a 6922/E88CC or 7308/E188CC in a Melos, get great sound, and have a much more durable tube in the amp.

Do these look like the real deal? Amperex 6922/E88CC from Holland.
post #29 of 44
In either case (SS vs tube), the electrolytic capacitors have a finite lifespan as well. Forever is a mighty long time.
As with tubes, it depends on how hard they are used, how close to their rating they are run. Near the limits, it's only 2,000 to 3,000 hours. Typically, I'd say more like 10 times that long though.
post #30 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Voodoochile
In either case (SS vs tube), the electrolytic capacitors have a finite lifespan as well. Forever is a mighty long time.
But with tube designs it's entirely possible to eliminate all electrolytic capacitors.
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