This 6L6 Tube Comparison Sheet Is Pretty Damn Useful

I guess it’s just because I’m old and crusty and an all-digital future scares me a little, but I’ve been posting about tubes a lot lately. I love tubes, and I could type for hours about various styles of tubes like 6L6 vs EL34 vs KT88 vs EL84 etc. But things get more subtle from that point on, and I’ll admit that my knowledge starts to get fuzzy. There are numerous companies that put their own subtle spin on these tubes (even though there are far fewer factories than there are brands of tubes), and the minutia starts to sound like some esoteric dark magic. Can you describe the differences between a Sovtek 5880 and a Svetlana Winged C? Because I sure as hell can’t.


Maybe this chart can help? Some beautiful obsessive lunatic tested out more tubes than I’d ever want to spend my hard-earned money on, and got all kinds of scientific-like on 6L6 tubes. And hey, it seems like for metal a Winged C is actually a pretty good choice? I guess I owe my local amp repair guy a Coke, because that’s what he usually puts in my amps. Thanks buddy!

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Chris Alfano has written about music and toured in bands since print magazines and were popular. Once in high-school he hacked a friend's QBasic stick figure fighting game to add a chiptune metal soundtrack. Random attractive people still give him high-fives about that.

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  • Hi Chris
    Looks like a possibly nice sheet but we can only see 2.5 specs. Are there more?

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