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6SN7 Tube Addicts

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  1. Robert Padgett
    If he is referring to the alignment pin in the center, then it is not even necessary, so whether he glued on a new one or epoxy, it should not matter, it only serves to get the actual pins into the proper sockets. Now if he is talking about pins, I am only familiar with reflowing solder in the pins, I have no knowledge about repairing pins.

    Last edited: Jul 23, 2019
  2. Slade01
    I think your reasoning makes sense in that if the pin breaks, it will be left in the socket saver if you use one, instead of the actual socket. It's probably worth the 5-10 bucks to use a saver as insurance. I've used a socket saver before on my amp, and it never affected the sound in any way (at least to my ears).
  3. ken6217
    Thanks for the replies.

    Out of curiosity, how much does heat play? Does heat affect the sound, the longevity of the tube, or both?
  4. cddc
    Can any expert here let me know how to tell RCA VT-231 grey glass apart from RCA 6SN7GT grey glass? And if there is any sonic difference?
  5. whirlwind
    Same tube, the VT-231 was made for the military, so chances are it was made a little more rugged so to speak. If tubes are the same price, then I would lean toward the military grade tube.
    cddc likes this.
  6. cddc
    @whirlwind, thanks a lot.

    They do look very similar to me, and I am having hard time to tell them apart.

    I know JAN tubes are basically the same as non-JAN tubes except being tested for military use...not too sure about VT-231. RCA VT-231 grey glass seems to have a higher price tag than RCA 6SN7GB grey glass.
  7. whirlwind
    VT-231 tubes are the older tubes, should all be 1945 or earlier I believe.
    I can't be positive that the RCA GT tube has the exact same construction as the VT-231

    The VT-231 grey glass are nice tubes...good bass are are warm sounding...much warmer than say a Sylvania tube from the same time.
    cddc likes this.
  8. cddc

    Cool, I heard the same thing from L0rdGwyn, he also recommended Ken-Rad VT-231 for good bass.

    I think I will like these warm tubes with good deep tight bass, which can compensate the shortfalls of HD800.
  9. whirlwind
    Great , enjoy.

    The Ken Rad VT-231 has even better bass...clear glass sounds pretty much the same as black glass as long as you get the ones with staggered plates.
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2019
    cddc likes this.
  10. cddc
    Cool, so one more vote on Ken-Rad for more bass.

    I remember @Skylab said K-R VT-231 has really strong bass but muddy. Not sure if RCA VT-231 is better overall than K-R VT-231?
    Skylab likes this.
  11. whirlwind
    I would say that would be a personal preference type of thing.
    Skylab and cddc like this.
  12. cddc
    Great! Indeed personal preferences and system synergy play a key role in this tube world :beerchug:
  13. cddc
    I did some more research today by comparing the internal construction photos, I would agree with you that RCA VT-231 grey glass and RCA 6SN7GT grey glass should be the same tube.
    whirlwind likes this.
  14. Wes S
    The KenRad is more forward in the mids to lower treble, than the RCA. The RCA grey glass, is super warm, and the mids are pushed further back, than the KenRad. They both have great bass, with the KenRad going deeper, and the RCA with more mid bass bloom. They both are rolled off up top. These were my 2 favorite tubes, when I first started using 6SN7. I have moved on to Brimar as my favorite, but still have a good stash of both KenRad( black and Clear glass) And RCA (grey glass). I would not say one is better than the other, as they both have their charms. However, for me the KenRad can be a little bright and harsh in the upper mids, to lower treble. This may not be an issue for most, but I am super sensitive to that area of the spectrum. If you want more bass, than go with KenRad, and if you want more warmth overall go with RCA.
    cddc likes this.
  15. cddc

    Super, great review on RCA VT-231 v.s. Ken-Rad VT-231. Thank you very much!

    It seems more likely now that RCA VT-231 would be my cup of tea, as bright and harsh upper mids to lower treble pairing with HD800 would likely to hurt my ears too. Glad that I scored 2 RCA VT-231's recently. :)
    Wes S likes this.
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