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woo6 owners: rectifier tube rolling options

post #1 of 159
Thread Starter 
what are my options?

stock: 5AR4/GZ34

update:

takezo recommended GZ33 and GZ32 as well as WE274B and WE274
post #2 of 159
Thread Starter 
evidently, the original topic (what make of rectifier to use) was covered in december edit: AND APRIL.

philips metalbase being the holy grail??
post #3 of 159
How many had a WA6 in December?

BTW, which thread are you referring to? Can't find.
post #4 of 159
Thread Starter 
post #5 of 159
it really depends on what sound signature you find yourself entralled with...

the philips metalbase or any other metal base 5ar4/gz34 are very dynamic,
up front and seems to have that extra gain in output with no noise...but
i also really like the gz32 and the gz33. the gz33 is about half price of the
metal base but sound uncannily similar, perhaps without that extra gain in
output perception...the gz32 has a super smooth and bloomy mid that reeks
of the "tube" sound with the widest sound stage i've ever listen to with a
headamp...the lower and higher freq. are not as impactful as the
metalbase nor the gz33 but the mid range is as sweet as the legendary
telefunken gz34s, at 1/3 the cost of a NOS...yup, my favorite is the gz32
for now...and just for fun, i purchased 5 NOS jan 5R4GA tubes. they sound
almost identical to a 60's mullard 5AR4 at 1/5 the cost...very neutral and laid back...

if you want to splurge on an exotic rectifier for the WA-6, then look into
the western electric 274B tube made in the 40's. it is supposedly the
king of the rectifiers with creamy smooth mids with jaw dropping clarity
and inner detail...oh, it'll cost you $600+ per tube...you may be able to
find 60's and 70's version of the WE 274B for about $300+...

when you buy tubes, don't go by the emission strength alone...a tube may
show very strong emission strength using a tube tester, but you'd be very
surprised how different tubes can sound even when all of them measure to
be strong...

allow the WA-6 caps to burn in several hundred hours to stabilize...
you should then be able to distinguish rather easily, when tube-rolling...

*PS: i've found that most of these tubes require 30-40 minutes of running
current thru it, to really settle down and sound full on the WA-6.

Update 5/08: the gz32 still has the warmest and most euphonic mids of all
of the rectifiers mentioned above, but i've come to the opinion that it suffers
from a narrower soundstage than many other rectifiers. the 5r4gy seems to
be the opposite coin of the gz32 in that the 5r4gy has the widest and largest
soundstage and a neurtal mid... i believe, as the blackgates settled down, i
was able to recognize the sound signature of each rectifier more consistently.
post #6 of 159

metalbase for sale

ichinichi-kun, you may want to look into this if you're set on getting a
metal-base gz34. i think it's still up for sale:

http://www.head-fi.org/forums/showthread.php?t=242333
post #7 of 159
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by takezo View Post
it really depends on what sound signature you find yourself entralled with...

the philips metalbase or any other metal base 5ar4/gz34 are very dynamic,
up front and seems to have that extra gain in output with no noise...but
i also really like the gz32 and the gz33. the gz33 is about half price of the
metal base but sound uncannily similar, perhaps without that extra gain in
output perception...the gz32 has a super smooth and bloomy mid that reeks
of the "tube" sound with the widest sound stage i've ever listen to with a
headamp...the lower and higher freq. are not as impactful as the
metalbase nor the gz33 but the mid range is as sweet as the legendary
telefunken gz34s, at 1/3 the cost of a NOS...yup, my favorite is the gz32
for now...and just for fun, i purchased 5 NOS jan 5R4GA tubes. they sound
almost identical to a 60's mullard 5AR4 at 1/5 the cost...very neutral and laid back...

if you want to splurge on an exotic rectifier for the WA-6, then look into
the western electric 274B tube made in the 40's. it is supposedly the
king of the rectifiers with creamy smooth mids with jaw dropping clarity
and inner detail...oh, it'll cost you $600+ per tube...you may be able to
find 60's and 70's version of the WE 274 for about $300+...

when you buy tubes, don't go by the emission strength alone...a tube may
show very strong emission strength using a tube tester, but you'd be very
surprised how different tubes can sound even when all of them measure to
be strong...

allow the WA-6 caps to burn in several hundred hours to stabilize...
you should then be able to distinguish rather easily, when tube-rolling...
WHOA! You mean I'm not limited to the 5AR4/GZ34 and 5U4G rectifiers?? That, aside from GZ34's, GZ33 and GZ32 are also viable and cost fractions that of a metal-base Philips GZ34? Looks like I've got a jump start on my tube hitlist!

Quote:
Originally Posted by takezo View Post
ichinichi-kun, you may want to look into this if you're set on getting a
metal-base gz34. i think it's still up for sale:

http://www.head-fi.org/forums/showthread.php?t=242333
Domo-arigato, Takezo-sensei, I've been eying fkclo's listing.

To be honest, I started this thread hoping a post like yours above would come along; someone who would offer a little more variety and options to the (substantially more) expensive NOS tubes, whose prices, by some accounts, have been artificially inflated by certain individuals (who've never been named in these posts) in California and Europe that hoarded, and who are now withholding, circa '50-'60 NOS 5AR4/GZ34 tubes.

If you have any other gems you'd like to share, please let me know!
post #8 of 159
ichinichi-kun, here's my current full list of all rectifiers compatible with the WA-6:

5AR4/GZ34
5AS4
5R4/WGA/WGB
5R4/GA/GB/GY/GYA/GYB
5U4G/U52
5U4GA/5U4GB
GZ32/5V4/5V4G/5V4GA/CV593/CV729
GZ33/CV5745/53KU/CV378 /U54
GZ37/CV378
CV575
CV1377
274B

these are the only ones that i can confirm works without a problem
with the WA-6. jack gave me most of these...try to buy from a dealer
that will give you the option of returning the tube if you don't like the
sound. ebay is a crap-shoot...like i mentioned previously, two same brand
tubes with identical emission test, gas leakage, etc...can sound very
different...tube testers are helpful with the basic screening of bad emissions
but the real test can only be done on your amp for sound quality...

check this site out. it's one of very few dealers that offers a return policy:

http://www.audiotubes.com/audtube.htm
post #9 of 159
The Mullard GZ32, that has the ST or coke bottle shape is a very nice tube and has a sound that some like as much or more than the GZ34 metal base. I have both and hope soon to give them a try in the Woo 6.
post #10 of 159
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamato8 View Post
The Mullard GZ32, that has the ST or coke bottle shape is a very nice tube and has a sound that some like as much or more than the GZ34 metal base. I have both and hope soon to give them a try in the Woo 6.
please post your impressions!!
post #11 of 159
just for clarifications, i don't claim i've heard the 274B rectifier...my wife may
make my life miserable if i spend $600 for what she considers a "funny looking
light bulb"...but i do highly recommend the gz32, gz33 and the popular gz34...
post #12 of 159
Now,I must have a gz32 to compliment my bugleboy.
post #13 of 159
Really some good posts here! I've got a nice selection of GZ34's and 5ar4's but need to exand out into the other tubes, especially if they are cheaper! I've spent more in tubes than I did on the amp.....
post #14 of 159
Johnsonad you better buy those beautiful metal plates (Unless you already have 2 pair) or I'll buy them just to have :/
post #15 of 159
Thread Starter 
Icarium, did you mean fkclo's posting?
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