On Wed, 16 Jan 2019 18:43:45 -0800, Big Bad Bob
Post by Big Bad Bob Post by firstname.lastname@example.org
I am glad this forum is still here and sort of active. I enjoy working
on tube equip for my hobby. If I had to work on solid state stuff, my
soldering iron would have been packed away in the attic years ago. I do
on occasion work on some early transistor stuff, but when I see ICs, the
device goes right out the door, untouched.
heh yeah, tubes made the electronics easier to deal with, that's for
sure. An IC with an OEM label on it is like a 'mystery black box' and
if you don't have an adequate schematic for the thing, damn near
impossible to troubleshoot. I've had to deal with desoldering and
replacing ICs and you can't do it to test-troubleshoot, especially CPUs
and logic arrays. Best method to deal with those is clip the leads,
desolder them, then re-solder a new device where the old one was and
hope that was it, unless you have some really detailed information on
how to confirm that it's bad (etc.).
Trying to desolder an IC such that you preserve it to re-solder back in
place is likely to damage the circuit board. That goes double with
An 8 pin IC, like an op-amp can be desoldered, but not those big
suckers.... I'll work on some amps that have those small Op-amps, but I
dont care to work on any solid state stuff. If it wasn't for my 60 year
old tube signal tracer, to guide me thru the circuits, I'd probably
never fix that stuff.
Even so, working on solid state stuff just lacks something. It's like
working on rocks, and in many ways, silicon is a rock, so it's very
true. And it lacks the dangerous high voltages, which in some ways takes
away the thrill. Yea, I got zapped in the past and I learned to be safe
the hard way. But I often think that working on high voltage gear,
activates me. Some of that high voltage leaks into the air and i feel
it, even if its not shocking me.
Post by Big Bad Bob
Tubes are also fun in that they actually look like they're doing
something, especially beam power tubes with the blue glow.
You think like I do. Not long ago, I said something very similar. I
always find tubes to have some "life: to them. The filaments glow, and
that blue-purple glow is really cool. My favorite tube has always been
the 6L6. Those beam power pentodes are awesome. Being a guy raised in
the 50s and 60s, I think back and realize almost all the rock bands we
loved were using 6L6 outputs on their guitar amps. Even today, they are
still the most used tube in guitar amps, and no solid state amp can give
that warm tube sound. I built a 3 channel stereo back in the late 60s,
modeled after the Altec Lansing cinema systems. There were twelve 6L6
tubes in the system, plus six 5U4 rectifiers and nine more tubes. Thats
27 tubes (just in the power amps). It kicked out around 350 watts of
clean awesome RMS power. And I loved to sit back, drink some beers and
do some other funny stuff, and watch them 6L6s dance in blue. I still
recall the one night I opened it up wide open, and blew out several
windows in the house.
Yep, those were the days.... Almost makes me want to turn on some of my
Ventures albums and listen to that wonderful warm tube sound along with
those spring reverbs.... Now that was music.....
Unfortunately these days I am running solid state amps. 1100 watts RMS
to be exact. It has good sound, but there is still something missing,
namely the tubes.