R/E/P > Oliver Archut

Do Tesla tubes always suck?

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J.J. Blair:
Oli, I took your advice and got some RFTs, which arrived yesterday.  I'll let you know how they sound in a couple days.  Thanks.  

Oliver -

What's your opinion on the Ruby tubes?  I've found them quite reliable and durable quality wise and I have appreciated their tone in my amps.


Oliver Archut:
Ruby Tubes is not a tube manufacture, they as well as other tube screening sales agents, best known is Groove Tubes, do nothing more than buy at bulk at the manufacture, test them, sometimes grade them and than sell them for a premium, that's all. Ruby tubes do a service same as good or as bad than any of the other tube suppliers.

Thanks for the response!  

Do you know who their source is?

Maybe I am hearing what I want to, but I do believe that I hear a positive / pleasant difference with the Ruby Tubes over all the other mfgs that I've tried.  

If they are from a common source, what might account for those differences over the other brands from possibly the same source?  Just different specs / grades?  Or are they actually using different materials?

Sorry for the elementary questions.  Just trying to learn the basics of how this all works.

Oliver Archut:
Currently there are not to many vacuum tube manufactures left that make audio tubes. All brands/trademarks today originate in a few factories that still make those devices of a golden area gone by.

In russia there are only a hand full of companies left from the 28 companies that are still producing, the most productive is the "Reflector Vacuum works" in Saratov, here 80% of the world audio tubes are made and sold under their trade names, Sovtek, Svetlana, EH, Tungsol and Mullard, the company is owned by the New Sensor Co. of New York.

The 2nd largest russian factory and also russias oldest vacuum works is the Svetlana Electron Devices. The company sells outside of russia under the "Winged C" logo due to a trademark dispute with the New Sensor/Mike Mathews company.

The Chinese Hunan Shuuguang Electron Group Co. LTD in Changsha is the biggest manufacture of vacuum devises left in china and 95% of all in production tubes that are labeled Made in China originate from this factory regardless of label/brandname.

EI in former Yugoslavia made tubes on and off for the last couple of years, lately a part of the factory has been sold to the Westrex Co. The nippled (on top) EL34 as well as the KT90 were the best tubes they made and great for Marshall amps, the KT90 in a Major realy kicks ass....

JJ formally Tesla
A company that makes tubes with the old Tesla equipment, but the quality is far, far away from the old Tesla standard (and that was still very low)

Aside form a few exotic and once in a while production run of specialty tubes at various small manufactures around the world, those are the manufactures that supply the world audio tubes.

Regardless what Tubes seller and everybody else claims about exclusive and specialty tubes that are made for only that company, none of the above makes tubes that can hold up or come even close to the historic Western manufactures like Philips, Telefunken, RCA, GE, etc.
Ruby tubes as well as Groove Tubes test and pre-select tubes and offer a good warranty, but in the end they are still sub-standard tubes compared to the Historic Icons...


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