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I was researching vintage 12AX7 tubes, and a pattern emerged - over a variety of brands and countries of origin, "long plates" are more highly sought after and command a higher price. (Probably old news to tube fans.)
My question - is there actually a physical characteristic of a longer plate that is beneficial for audio sound quality ? OR is it simply a matter of the longer plates being used during a particular time period in the 1950s when the 12AX7 tubes were better quality ?
(If it really is the length of the plates, then it should also correlate with current production tubes as well, in theory.)
In my experience, the long plates do sound better. I've always assumed it's because they are an older design.
IMHO, the older designs in anything are better. After the innitial design is proven, things like workmanship and materials quality go downhill for reasons of economy. Manufacturerrs find ways to cut corners and trim expense.
I thought it is because long plates are less microphonic.
On the contrary, the larger the plate area the MORE a tube will be impacted.
Thanks, Jim. I stand corrected and as soon as I read your post, I realized my reasoning was bass-ackwards. Makes more sense that the shorter the plate the less it will vibrate.
enhanced with the longer plates. Some theorize that the round plates of the Tungsol round plate 6SN7, creates a more uniform surface and this is why they sound better. So long plates, adding more surface could create a better environment for the electron flow more surface. With all other things being equal.
The Elaborate DAC=Johnny's Balloon Meshplate 27 Balanced Preamp=Balanced Six Pacs=Newform Research 645
iRiver H140/MB Balanced dac/amp/Ultrasone Ed. 9/JH13 Pro IEM's
see images at: www.pbase.com/jamato8
... which could mean less distortion.
no, not less but on a higher frequency...
The times, they are changing...
Always a nice place to start.
Thanks - but if you read my post, you will see that I am not "starting" and if you read Joe's post, you will see that the phrase "long plates" does not occur anywhere in those several pages.
If you are not just starting out, you probably know this.
That may be true in the big picture but it does seem that there is a preference for long plated tubes. That statement holds true for Mullard 12AX7s (early product) and Tall v short Sylvania 6SN7Ws and so on. Where this came from or more importantly why it started is an important question?
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