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WA5-LE tube choices

post #1 of 68
Thread Starter 
I will soon be getting this amp from a fellow Head-Fier.The unit has premium parts upgrade and stock tubes.

I was thinking about tube upgrades.I have alot of 6SN7's mostly 1940's-1950's including TS RP-oval and round mica,Syl - metal,tallW,shortW,bad boys etc,National Union grey & black,Ken Rad black glass,RCA grey,Raytheon and Brimar 6SN7GTY 1960's-1970's plus others.

As far as rectifiers I have some 5AR4 metalbases but all are singles,one old type with spot welded plates the others are later versions.I have some 5U4g again mostly singles but I do have a pair of 1944 NU with same date code.

I will only have the stock Chineses 300b's

What would be the best upgrade? Use the tubes I have and leave the 300b upgrade until later?
post #2 of 68
Wow, sounds like you have a great set of 6sn7's to use! I am very jealous.

Congrats on the WA5 LE purchase. It is a really great amp.

I would suggest getting another pair of 300b's. In my opinion, the stock tubes are not so great. There are many many to choose from. I went with the Sophia Princess Mesh plate and I am very happy with my choice. I heard some WE 300b's in Mikeymad's amp and some other kind that Jack had at CanJam. They were both excellent but I am still going to stick with the SP for now. Maybe someone with more tube rolling experience could give you better advice. You could always try it with stock tubes and decide if there is something missing.

I just wanted to welcome you to the WA5 club.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob N View Post
I will soon be getting this amp from fellow Head-Fier.The unit has premium parts upgrade and stock stock tubes.

I was thinking about tube upgrades.I have alot of 6SN7's mostly 1940's-1950's including TS RP-oval and round mica,Syl - metal,tallW,shortW,bad boys etc,National Union grey & black,Ken Rad black glass,RCA grey,Raytheon and Brimar 6SN7GTY 1960's-1970's plus others.

As far as rectifiers I have some 5AR4 metalbases but all are singles,one old type with spot welded plates the others are later versions.I have some 5U4g again mostly singles but I do have a pair of 1944 NU with same date code.

I will only have the stock Chineses 300b's

What would be the best upgrade? Use the tubes I have and leave the 300b upgrade until later?
post #3 of 68
Thread Starter 
I was thinking of the Sophia mesh plate.Are they reliable?

Also looking at the Emission Labs mesh 300b (when funds are available)
post #4 of 68
The woo likes the WE300bs,I am not a fan of the Meshplates.Never heard the Emission labs.The WE300bs are my 300b choice.
Look at past meet impressions of R10 mini meet held at Davedereks house,We did some tube swaps with the WA5.
post #5 of 68
Thread Starter 
Haven't WE stopped making the 300B?
post #6 of 68
According to the Tube Store the 300B by Westen Electric is making a come back. See: 300B / 2A3 / 6A3 Tube Types
post #7 of 68
The sp and the we are still produced, at least that was what I thought I saw. It could have been a old web page. Of course nos we would be the best.
post #8 of 68
Rob - Welcome to Team WA5....

I think that you are good with your sets of 6sn7's (I would roll them all and see how they do). I also think that you are fine with the old metal base 5AR4's. It would be nice to be matched, but for the rectifiers it does not make as much of a difference as the drivers. So I would concentrate all your efforts on the main 300B's. Then go back and work on the rest.

Like others, I would give the highest recomendation to the Western Electrics. I did get a chance to listen to the Treasure 300B's from Jack Shuguang Treasure 300B-Z. They are worth the price, but I didn't like them as well as the WE's. They added an edge to the notes that I didn't really like, not really a harshness, but an edge. And the bass was not as deep, rich, warm as the WE's.

The Sophia 274B's are good, but do not have as much pace and impact as the gz34/5ar4.

Cheers,
post #9 of 68
Thread Starter 
What about the 5u4g NU's?
post #10 of 68
I don't have a WA5, but my general experience with 5U4G's is that all of the WWII and post-war era US 5U4G's sound pretty good. I liked the Tung-Sol best out of it, RCA, Sylvania, and GE - never tried an NU, but I am sure it is good, and given that and the strength of your 6SN7 supply, it does seem that the 300B upgrade would be the right place to do, as financially painful as that might be
post #11 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrarroyo View Post
According to the Tube Store the 300B by Westen Electric is making a come back. See: 300B / 2A3 / 6A3 Tube Types
Rob N

Audiogon is a godd place to pick up used or New pairs,I picked up a pair of matched spares new ones a while back for $500.00.
Even used is a option as they are rated at 10,000 hours lifespan.
post #12 of 68
Thread Starter 
Tubedepot are back ordered with WE

They have orders going back to June 2008
post #13 of 68
Yeah, it looks like they are moving their plant and are not currently in production. I don't have an amp that uses 300B's, but I should have bought a pair when they were cranking out new ones for $700/pair and stashed them.
post #14 of 68
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bozebuttons View Post
Rob N

Audiogon is a godd place to pick up used or New pairs,I picked up a pair of matched spares new ones a while back for $500.00.
Even used is a option as they are rated at 10,000 hours lifespan.
Were these the current production or more vintage ones?
post #15 of 68
Right now there is a trio for sale on Audiogon for a Grand
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