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Information for a newbie on tube rolling. 12AU7/EEC82 to be specific

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

I hope someone can help me.  I bought a Bravo V2 amp, and while the stock tube is ok for listening to the TV with a wireless transmitter/receiver, it doesn't cut it when listening to music.  I'm using a new set of AKG K240s.  I would like something with better and clearer bass as the stock tube is very muddy.  I've read the entire Bravo thread, but I somehow get lost as to which tube does what.  I've also searched the site, and the web, with little "real world" recommendations.  I'd like to get 3 or 4 tubes to play with without spending a fortune. In the 30.00 range, or am I kidding myself? 


Maybe some info on how to verify which tube in a certain brand produces the sound.  It seems that there are multiple, say RCA Clear Tops on Ebay.  It looks like some of them are the good ones, some are not.   How can I tell which is which by looking at the picture?  Or what is the best question to ask the seller to find the information needed to determine which tube he is selling?


Also, is there a site I can search on to see what the numbers from different brand/model tube testers mean?  That way I could look at the numbers and at least make an intelligent decision.


Thank you for any help you can offer.  This is really new to me and these questions are the only way I can learn.  Jim.

post #2 of 24

I'm not here to answer your questions (I'm fresh in the tube rolling myself) but I have read some articles here and there and I found this one helpful. maybe a quick read will enlighten you. There are several good guides on ebay.



post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 

Amish, thanks for the reply!  That is some really good basic information, and some nice specific info on some brands.  I also looked at the second site he linked, but it was for different model tubes.  Do you have any links for information on say RCA, Sylvania and Raytheon tubes? 

Thanks again. Jim.

post #4 of 24

The Bravo is a nice amp but the quality is not high enough to justify spending up big on exotic tubes , you won't hear much difference

Look for NOS tubes with closely matched sections and you will be OK

Many tubes like the RCA clear top and GE five star are quite cheap because there are millions of them it is not a reflection on sound quality

Guides on what a particular tube will sound like are not very accurate as tubes will react differently in each situation so take them only as a rough indicator

Often on EBay you can find a mixed bag of 12au7 tubes in one auction they are usually used and come with no guarantee but you will get a selection of tubes to try cheap .

Then if you really like the sound of one in particular you can look for a NOS example

post #5 of 24
Thread Starter 

Dogmatrix, a mixed bag of several for 20 bucks or so would be good, but I haven't seen anything like that yet....maybe I'm searching wrong.  I've seen several offerings for multiple of basically the same brand tube, but the mixed bag sounds like the way to go.  I'll keep looking.  Thanks!  Jim.

post #6 of 24

Have patience and check often and it will come

Good Luck :bigsmile_face:

post #7 of 24
Thread Starter 


Thanks for the info guys!!!!  I appreciate the quick responses!  In the last few years, patience has not been big in my list of attributes. :0  But I will take your recommendations to heart and do my best.  Thanks again.  Jim.


Originally Posted by Dogmatrix View Post

Have patience and check often and it will come

Good Luck :bigsmile_face:

post #8 of 24
Thread Starter 

Man, am I going off the deep end????? :)  Anyone have any ideas on this tube: http://cart.payments.ebay.com/sc/add?ssPageName=CART:ATC&item=iid:221476722338,qty:1  It's a lot more than I thought I'd spend for one tube, but if it gets me the clearer bass and good mids and highs with a decent sound stage, I might just bite. Thanks for any comments you might have.  Jim.

post #9 of 24
Thread Starter 

Well, I calmed down on the above tube, though I'm intrigued by it.  I ordered 2 individual tubes.  An RCA black plate square getr and a Raytheon long black plate.  I have a question out on a Sylvania long black plate.  All three will total about 33.00 with shipping.  That's about where I wanted to be for a variety of tubes to play with.  If I've made a mistake, at least it wasn't an expensive one.  According to the sellers on these tubes, the test numbers make it look like they are in really good shape.  Guess we'll see. 

I'm still open to ideas on what specifically to look for for the better and clearer bass, and good mids and highs and a decent sound stage for the Bravo V2 amp.  So let me know!!!  Thanks for all the ideas so far.  Jim.

post #10 of 24

Hey dude. I found this a great site and ordered from him. There are some $$$ tubes there but he has some good cheaper tubes too plus a lot of helpful info on tubes in general.




post #11 of 24

Im new too like I said but after reading many reviews I ended up buying several 12v tubes 12au7 and 12ax7 and 12at7 varieties.


These seem to be the favorites more so the 12au and 12ax series.


The guy that runs that site I linked in my previous post writes a little bit about each manufacturer and gives some details into their sound quality. Lots to read there.

post #12 of 24
Thread Starter 

Yes, I have read through that a couple times.  Again, some really good information.  I am really tempted to get the RCA I asked about above that is 29.70 shipped.  I really like the idea of the military grade tubes as they all look to be very balanced within themselves.  That has to be that they were the cream of the crop for that production and therefore were the only ones that met the military's specifications.  I have an old Simpson analog volt/ohm meter that was purchased originally back in the late 70's by the company I was working for then that was reported to be a military spec unit.  We installed low to mid fi car audio, and the company thought enough to invest in this type of equipment.  Just wish I could replace the leads!!!  Thanks for the continued information.  Keep it coming!!  Jim.

Edited by Coolmeadow Kid - 6/28/14 at 7:00am
post #13 of 24
Thread Starter 

And I just ordered a Sylvania long black plate.  Will play with these 3 then decide if I want to splurge on the RCA black long plate Navy tube.  The seller has 6 of them, all the same perfect balance readings.  But this ends for now.  I'll post on the Bravo amp thread what I find after burning in and listening to them.  Thanks again for the help so far.  But please, if you have something to add to the info request, please do so!!!!  It will still benefit me and who knows how many other people in the future!  Jim

Edited by Coolmeadow Kid - 6/29/14 at 6:19am
post #14 of 24

Another thread I discovered with some good info on tubes



post #15 of 24
Thread Starter 

Amish, I think our searching has reproduced the same articles!!!!  But I re-read it anyway so I will maybe absorb more and more of the information.  Continued thanks for the information.  It was this article that guided me to the 3 tubes that I bought this weekend....RCA, Sylvania, and Raytheon.  All long blackplates.  I should get the first 2 tubes as early as Tuesday, but the first estimate said Wednesday.  The last of the 3, the Sylvania, should be here Saturday.  I'll get to play with the first 2 on Friday the 4th, and check out the Sylvania on Saturday after I get off work, and on Sunday.

Have you played with any tubes yet?  If so, which ones do you like the best for you, and what are your reasons?  Thanks!  Jim.

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