The Tube Depot
The webpages are simple, quick to browse – to target a specific tube takes a couple of seconds. I really like this website! Not crammed with a load of rubbish which you don’t need or want to read about. Be warned though, tube amplifiers are addictive. I grew up in an era of valves, high voltages and output transformers. No doubt these amplifiers are exceptional value for money – back home if one can get a tube the price is up to 4 times the prices indicated in their catalogue.
I was in the merchant navy between 1980 and 1989 and our radio training very much involved triodes, tetrodes and pentodes although the stuff was reqgarded then already as being obsolete. (try getting 1500W PEP from only two transistors in the output stage then). Actually most people may not even be aware of the fact that they have a tube in their microwave oven – the magnetron. So don’t scoff then! The reality of the situation is that tube amplifiers sound different, are different and because of this lies their unique value. The Tube Depot certainly don’t sound as if they are targetting hobbyists in their 60s and 70s. Although building tube amplifiers to a certain degree is easier to build than semiconductor units (only because they are high gain, voltage driven devices similar to FETs) be aware that you will be working with high voltages and youngsters should be supervised. That been said I think I’m going to get one for myself as a present at the end of the year.
Note that Parts-Ring is not an affiliate of theTubeDepot – we advertise their wares because we believe that tubes should be given the respect they deserve, you can only love ’em and not be sent to the same mass grave as three year old computers.