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Opinions on rectifier tubes? (Read 13507 times)
Steamer
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Opinions on rectifier tubes?
12/15/05 at 00:12:59
 
Hello,
Now that I have the Select mono's drivin my 511B/902 horns I would like to do some rolling.

My current tube compliment is as follows:
Golden Dragon 274B's
NOS rca 6bq5's
JAN 6922's

This is the recommended combo by charlieboy who I accuired the amps from.He also said that I could probably do better with  different rectifier tubes.

What I am hearing sounds fantastic,but gotta scratch that itch...

So what are some recommendations,impressions on rectifier tubes.

Being new to this rolling I'm not sure what to look for,what works,what doesn't,to many variations and possibilities.In time things will clear up but for now any suggestions would be a great help and starting point.

Greg
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Mike W
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #1 - 12/15/05 at 01:18:52
 
just get a Mullard GZ32 and be done with the search
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veryoldcat
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #2 - 12/15/05 at 05:41:35
 
[quote author=Mike W  link=1134609179/0#1 date=1134609532]just get a Mullard GZ32 and be done with the search [/quote]

Ditto.

A good second to the Mullard GZ32 would be an RCA 5v4, which is a little less pricey. The RCA is very very nice and a little less pricey, but not quite the Mullard.

Karl
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StingRay
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #3 - 12/15/05 at 21:16:41
 
I agree with the Mullard GZ32 recommendation.  It was the best in my Select before I sold it.  The rectifier was snatched up pretty quick after I sold the Select.
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matchstikman
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #4 - 12/16/05 at 00:01:55
 
Questions.

Can this Mullard GZ32 be used on a CSP?

How long will one last?  Is one on a CSP all I will ever need?
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yosemite_sam
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #5 - 12/16/05 at 00:17:15
 
[quote author=matchstikman  link=1134609179/0#4 date=1134691315]Questions.

Can this Mullard GZ32 be used on a CSP?

How long will one last?  Is one on a CSP all I will ever need? [/quote]

I have been using RCA 5V4G in my CSP. It will last at least 5 to 10 years I believe.
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matchstikman
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #6 - 12/16/05 at 00:33:47
 
I have been using a Ruby.  Lots of people don't like the sound of a Ruby, but it seems to fit in my system.
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yosemite_sam
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #7 - 12/16/05 at 01:05:31
 
What other tubes are you using in CSP?
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veryoldcat
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #8 - 12/16/05 at 06:29:26
 
I haven't been able to beat the 5y3 family in my CSP.

The GZ32, 5v4's, 5r4's, 5ar4's, 5u4's work in my select, but don't fly in the CSP like the 5y3. The Sovtek 5y3 works ok, the Mullard 5y3 is incredible, and the Bendix red bank 5y3 is very nice, for my system.

I love the Mullard GZ32 in my select, but don't dig it in the CSP. Second best to the 5y3 in the CSP is the Cetron 5r4 or Sylvania 5ar4, but the 5y3 still wins. ymmv.

Karl
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Mike W
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #9 - 12/16/05 at 13:11:44
 
Karl,
Have you tried the Mazda 5Y3. That is a verrrrry nice 5y3. I was a little partial to the RCA 5Y3 in my C but have since changed my mind and the Mazda is a clear winner. Can be found still at reasonable prices too.
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veryoldcat
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #10 - 12/16/05 at 15:42:24
 
Thnx Mike,

I haven't yet tried the Mazda, but I'll poke around and seek to get one. Right now am using Bendix Red Bank 6106 which is very very nice, which was recommended by Eli. The Bendix is not so easy to find.

I'm  inevitably hoping to replace a Mullard 5y3 that died. THAT one was really something; it had noticeably the most liquid sound and best separation of instruments of ANY I've tried.

Karl

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Doorman
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #11 - 12/16/05 at 19:12:46
 
Another rectifier, IMHO, that sounds very nice in a Select is a Raytheon 5U4GB. Still looking for a (reasonably) price Mullard GZ32 though.
Don
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Steamer
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #12 - 12/16/05 at 21:46:41
 
[quote author=yosemite_sam  link=1134609179/0#7 date=1134695131]What other tubes are you using in CSP? [/quote]


The other tubes I got with the amps are:

Svetlana SV83's
Siemen 6922's
Stock 5u4's(chinese origin?)2 pair black bottoms and red,black bottoms have 5z3p on glass red has 5u4g made in china on glass.

I have'nt tried any of these yet,everything is too new and I am trying to get a feel for the sound.

I believe I have the best combo in now?

Greg
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Steamer
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #13 - 12/16/05 at 21:54:17
 
Thanks everyone for the ideas,I know have an idea what to look for at least.
Saw some Mullard gz32's for around $60,did'nt know if this was a good price or not,they were out of Great Btriton on ebay this am.
Is that the going price?

Greg
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veryoldcat
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #14 - 12/17/05 at 02:50:47
 
[quote author=Steamer  link=1134609179/0#13 date=1134770057]
Saw some Mullard gz32's for around $60,did'nt know if this was a good price or not,they were out of Great Btriton on ebay this am.
Is that the going price? [/quote]

I'm not the biggest expert around, but I haven't seen them for much less than that, and have seen them for more. My experience with this particular tube is I like it so much in the select I'd pay that price if I didn't have one (if the seller was trustworthy).

Karl




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rayd
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #15 - 12/18/05 at 13:43:37
 
Hi Greg, I bought my Mullard 5V4/GZ32 from Upscale Audio about a year ago and it was $35 at the time. They are now listing it for $60! Ouch... But it sure is a sweet sounding tube...

- Ray

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Eli Duttman
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #16 - 12/18/05 at 14:06:32
 
[quote author=rayd  link=1134609179/15#15 date=1134913417]Hi Greg, I bought my Mullard 5V4/GZ32 from Upscale Audio about a year ago and it was $35 at the time. They are now listing it for $60! Ouch... But it sure is a sweet sounding tube...

- Ray

[/quote]

I wonder what the rationale for that sort of a price increase is.  Is greed a possible motivation?   Kiss

Mullard GZ32s are fast becoming as costly as Mullard GZ34s.   Angry  Since the RCA 5V4G is nearly as good as the Mullard GZ32, that's the variety I'd be trying to obtain.
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veryoldcat
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #17 - 12/18/05 at 18:01:17
 
The Mullard GZ32's I have are marked CV593 instead of "GZ32" which is a military number, but they're supposedly identical. If they can be found perhaps they can be had for somewhat less?

Karl

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hdrider
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #18 - 05/03/16 at 02:35:14
 
I just put a CV593 / GZ32 I bought off Kevin @ Upscale years ago for my little 2watt Zen in my Rachael and holy cow, what a big difference over the 274's that Steve is shipping in the units now. I used the 274 for about a year and bought a cryo'ed version off of Ron @ Cryoset but this GZ32 is really, really nice so far. Happy listening, Chris.
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Rachael, ZP3, ZMC 1, SE84CS, Oppo BDP-93, Sota Star TT w/ FR-64, Shinnon Red Moving coil, Omega 7XRS Mk 2 walnut, DeepOmega 8 sub, Morrow Audio PH3 and MA3 IC's, Stax Lambda Signature Pro & SRM-T1 tube amp, Gamma Electrostatic phones.
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KMokc
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #19 - 05/03/16 at 06:02:28
 
Hi Chris,
In my Rachel in my computer room system, I'm running a Sophia Electric 274B in the rectifier position. In the power I'm running 1960's RCA 6L6GC Black Plates and Zaerix ECC88/6DJ8's.

Love the sounding I'm getting currently. This is the system I just added a Rega RP6 and Nova II phono pre, running a Dynavector 20X2H.

Kevin
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pursuitofnow
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #20 - 07/16/16 at 06:40:04
 
Chris, how would you describe the differences between the 274b and the CV593 / GZ32 in the 2 watt Zen?
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hdrider
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #21 - 07/16/16 at 13:42:36
 
When I go my 2 watt Zen, Steve was supplying a 5U4, I haven't tried the 274 in the little Zen. But in our Rachael I feel that overall sound stage is a little bigger with the GZ32B than the 5U4 or 274. But now I will have to hook up the lil'Zen and try the 274 in it. Also in the Rachael the background just seems ''blacker'' if that make sense. Sounds seem to come out of nowhere. Actually last night playing some Steve Hackett everything just seemed more dynamic and the differences between his guitar tones was much more obvious. Very tough to put words to emotions sometimes. Happy listening, Chris.
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pursuitofnow
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #22 - 07/16/16 at 17:18:15
 
Nice, thank you. I'll be receiving my 2 watt zen any day now and can't wait to try different tubes.
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hdrider
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #23 - 07/17/16 at 15:01:29
 
Pursuit- My only suggestion would be to run the stock tubes in the unit until you have a firm grasp on the amps sound. It changes quite a bit over the first few weeks, but just listen often and get a lot of hours on it. Decware is the most amazing product lines I have experienced and you want to be sure the changes that tubes make are noted instead of the capacitors settling in. Happy listening, Chris.
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Rachael, ZP3, ZMC 1, SE84CS, Oppo BDP-93, Sota Star TT w/ FR-64, Shinnon Red Moving coil, Omega 7XRS Mk 2 walnut, DeepOmega 8 sub, Morrow Audio PH3 and MA3 IC's, Stax Lambda Signature Pro & SRM-T1 tube amp, Gamma Electrostatic phones.
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samb0357
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #24 - 07/21/16 at 23:18:40
 
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« Last Edit: 07/21/16 at 23:19:39 by samb0357 »  
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Crazy Bill the Eel Killer
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Tubes Rule !!

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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #25 - 07/26/16 at 02:32:16
 
Hello pursuit,
used the stock Ruby's, Valve Art 274B, NOS RCA 60's vintage ( I THINK black plate ), and the clear winner by a long shot was these :

http://www.ebay.com/itm/2x-5c3s-5U4G-5U3S-5U3C-Svetlana-Black-Plate-Russian-Rect...

Now the ones I have are late 50's-mid 60's variety. If you can get one of that vintage, go for it.

I've got eight ( was going to include them when I sell my Select ), but I could send one or two your way if you like. Send me a PM if you're interested.

So I've got to agree w/ samb0357.

Incredible tube.

Cheers,        Crazy Bill        :)
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« Last Edit: 07/26/16 at 02:35:03 by Crazy Bill the Eel Killer »  
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mark58
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #26 - 02/27/17 at 18:26:57
 
Ok, I'm resurrecting this thread.  I recently bought some RCA 5V4Gs and really like them in the Monoblocks...bought a second pair for the Torii MK IV and another single.  I know the Mullard GZ 32 is supposed to be the "Best"...or at least better.  But what about the Dario/Mini Watt GZ 32.  Is it made in France?  Holland?  Anyone heard it...comments please.  Mark.

PS...I'm trying to obey my unwritten rule not to pay more than about $50 per tube.
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« Last Edit: 02/27/17 at 18:53:23 by mark58 »  

"The man that hath no music in himself, nor is not moved with the concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, deceptions, and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night and his affections dark as Hell. Let no such man be trusted." William Shakespeare
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JOMAN
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #27 - 03/01/17 at 03:42:59
 
I've tried NOS Winged "C" 5U4G's, 5Y3GYS, and some others...

Not even close to the Mullard CV593/GZ32.  Not that the others were bad it's just that the Mullard was that much different.  But I doubt you'll find any in the price range you are trying to maintain.  Will suggested Tungsram 5V4G's and you probably can get these around the $50.00 mark.

Hate to tell you what I paid for the NOS CV593/GZ32's and I bought spares and I'm getting more!!  In my system and for my sonic tastes they are that good.  The interesting thing about the Mullards is that they seem too bring out the best of any other signal or output tubes I put in.  So now I've settled on the Mullard's and will roll around them so to speak.

I am going to be looking for some Tungsrams (curiosity only) once I recover from the price of the Mullards.
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mark58
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #28 - 03/01/17 at 16:17:04
 
I am enjoying the RCA 5V4Gs so at some point I will try the Mullards.  How much did you pay?  What would be a good price?  When this thread was started it seemed to be $60, I'm betting 90 may be the best I could hope for...I see $120 a lot.  Mark.
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« Last Edit: 03/01/17 at 16:17:40 by mark58 »  

"The man that hath no music in himself, nor is not moved with the concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, deceptions, and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night and his affections dark as Hell. Let no such man be trusted." William Shakespeare
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JOMAN
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #29 - 03/01/17 at 17:30:35
 
Mark,
I paid $125.00 ea. genuine NOS Mullards. Yes it hurt.  Upscale does not list them anymore and evidently they introduced them at $35.00 ea. (always the last one at the party!!!)  The price of $60.00 seems to go back to 2011.

I tried to hyperlink an Ebay ad but didn't work for some reason... if you go to Ebay- CV539/GZ32 you should be able to see some Genuine Mullards for $90.00 from Taiwan.  This has appeared since I bought mine.

The ones I got are from the Canadian Distributor of SME Tone Arms.  You can find their ad on Ebay as well and his price is still $125.00.  Alfred is a really cool guy.  Has a long history in this market and has an incredible collection of tables.  He's restoring an Empire for me and modding it with an SME arm (I'm also into the vintage thing, it'll look great with the CSP, Zen, and the Omegas).  Because of the stellar service I get from him I'll be paying his prices.

In todays market when U52's are selling from $250 - $500+ and Western Electric 422A's are selling from $500 - $2,000+, good service and $125 is not all that bad.

Something else that put me on to the CV539's was positive comments from other forum members and...
Dubstep Girl's Massive 5AR4/5R4/5U4G Rectifier Review/Comparison!... Interesting reading...
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mark58
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #30 - 03/01/17 at 17:45:13
 
Yes, I've seen the ad for $125 and Dubstep Girls post on HeadFi.  I'll hunt around.  For now the RCAs are sounding fine...and cheap Smiley  Mark.
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"The man that hath no music in himself, nor is not moved with the concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, deceptions, and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night and his affections dark as Hell. Let no such man be trusted." William Shakespeare
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JOMAN
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #31 - 03/01/17 at 23:38:56
 
Mark,
I just ordered a NOS Tungsol 5V4G Sts for $34.95.  I want to compare it to the Mullard CV593/GZ32, I want to see what the difference will be in my sytem.  This is more of a direct comparison than comparing it to a 5U4G.

Based on reviews and comments I do think that the RCA 5U4G Black Plate is a pretty good option and all that many will need.  

Over the years I've "settled" for something not quite there for me only to sell and then get what will satisfy me.  This has cost me a lot more in the long run.  My objective right now is to settle on THE system for me in the next six months, tubes and all.  That's why I'm going to be rolling tubes - once and for all.  However like you, I have set certain $$ limits.
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will
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #32 - 03/04/17 at 23:52:54
 
Reply 27 by Joman: "Will suggested Tungsram 5V4G's"   Just a heads up. I have not tried Tunsgram 5V4Gs.

But I would have recommended trying an early Tungsol 5V4 GA fat/straight bottle with a bottom D getter as a Mullard alternative. These may actually be RCA made??? They have a very similar plate/getter setup as the RCA 5V4G ST (coke bottle) black plates I have, though the plates look greyer in the GAs. The Tungsol looks very close to the RCA GA (fat bottle) I just found http://www.ebay.com/itm/RCA-5V4GA-NOS-NIB-1967-Vacuum-Tube-/322441197287?hash=it... I have also seen a Raytheon labelled tube that looks just like this RCA and the Tungsol I have.

These impressions are using the tubes in the CSP3.

The fat bottle has a pretty different sound to me than the RCA 5V4G-ST I have, the ST balancing open, though more dark/soft/ mids up, with bigger/warmer feeling overall, the mids down bigger in the balance, and slower feeling.

Alternately, the Tungsol 5V4 GA (fat/straight bottle) with a bottom D getter is more neutral to me, closer to the Mullard GZ32 I have than most 5V4G types. I would say this Tungsol fat bottle has more midrange inner detail and air than the Mullard, and may be a little faster/punchier. It and the Mullard have more fine detail, speed and space than the RCA ST. Both the Tungsol and Mullard have more complexity of detail, more fine detail, things I really like for revealing timbre...textures, space, and ambient information.

The Tungsol has a little rounder bottom than the Mullard, but is not as warm/big/round lower down as the RCA ST. I would probably put the Mullard's sense of overall "warmth" in between the two and more even top to bottom. Depending what it is with, the RCA ST can go so far as to tend to loose on bottom. But it can be pretty tight, just depends on the rest.

I really like the faster, more complex Tungsol fat bottle and Mullard here, and have never adapted to the RCA ST in my setup. The RCA ST is good tube, showing very refined qualities, but for me, in this setting, it is a little too colored, dark, and rigid. I can imagine that these could be very good traits in some settings though!

Anyway, Mark, from what I can tell "RCA 5V4G" is more than one tube, different shapes and vintages having different sounds. I have consistently found that with straight bottles, fat bottles, and coke bottle shapes, the shape influences the sound. So I think this is a relevant distinction when discussing tubes. Everything matters...mica type and placement, plates, getters, all of it.

I am sure I have posted this in other tube threads, but as a Mullard alternative, the Mazda labelled Phillips GZ32 ST shape, with double bottom D getters (one on each side) I have are really good too. They are just a little cleaner than the late 50s Mullard, but quite similar in terms of linearity, speed, and the Phillips way of conveying clarity and detail with warmth so well integrated it sounds like the warmth is part of the detail. With many tubes, the darkness associated with "warmth" is there "along with" the detail, having sort of a separate sound that masks detail rather than sounding integrated with it if that makes any sense.

The Mazdas and Mullard GZ32 STs I have have flawlessly integrate warmth, softening/warming things without loss of detail or space.

Another really good, less expensive alternative to the Mullards was an early Adzam/Phillips I had, but it shorted. It was a really nice sounding tube, every bit as sophisticated as the Mullard. I can't say what vintage is was, but its construction was just like the late 50s Mullard I have.

So Mark, based on your preference for hot topped RTF EL34s and how American Amperex 7308s tone that down a little while still appearing open and textured, the toned down RCA 5V4 STs might be your best bet. Which ones are in the Monos?

The old Mullard GZ32 might work too though. Similarly to the RTFs, they do "clear" with an interesting textured "warmth" mixed into the clarity, but more clear/complex/linear/fast than the RCA 5V4G-ST I have, so may be a little risky there??? Or maybe not!
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« Last Edit: 03/05/17 at 00:01:27 by will »  

PSA P5/mod'd Brickwall/Shunyata Defender/and more; MacMini/Audirvana>Jitterbug/Regen, modded Gustard x20pro DAC; DIY + Pi Audio PCs; DIY ICs + USB; Jupiter CSP3; Torii MKIV; DIY Speaker Cables; HR1; Madscientist, SynRes, Archie's, Herbie's isocup feet
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mark58
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #33 - 03/05/17 at 01:33:57
 
Hey Will, I had a pair of 1957 RCA 5V4G-ST black plates in the Monos but now I've got a different pair of them that I bought based on having the same test results.  When I put them in the  monos it was odd...one had much dimmer rods on top.  Investigating the date codes the dim one I think is a 1944 tube...HIE is the code.  The other is labeled Emerson with a code of 2/55 which I think is 1955.  I have a single one that I haven't tried yet. I just put in a RCA Black Plate triple mica 5751 in my ZP3 in place of a Sylvania black plate triple mica 5751 in the front position...I like them both but prefer the sylvania.  So I haven't tried the 5V4G STs in the Torii yet.  I'm trying not to change too many things at the same time.  Mark.
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« Last Edit: 03/05/17 at 01:37:11 by mark58 »  

"The man that hath no music in himself, nor is not moved with the concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, deceptions, and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night and his affections dark as Hell. Let no such man be trusted." William Shakespeare
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will
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #34 - 03/07/17 at 00:18:53
 
Yes, sounds like your new 5V4G-STs might be better used individually in your pres.

I have been running Mazda GZ32 with 2 bottom D getters in the MKIV for a long time... I can still really enjoy other rectifiers, but not as much as these so far. Same as the late 50s Mullard GZ32 with a single bottom getter in the CSP3. Though a little different, they share qualities, and just really work for my setting. Both have a nice linear balance that is fast, detailed, smooth and warm, a tricky combination that does something beautiful about making music here in this room .

I get not wanting to change too much too fast. I have been on a mod trip for many months now. First the resistors and caps on the HR-1s...still ongoing.... then adding in the power supplies in the CSP3 and Torii....and this last month, a new Gustard x20 pro DAC that was really good, but is becoming pretty great. Making changes slowly enough to hear what they do with burnin takes time, so for me takes some discipline. But the "carrots" dangling are seductive, and once I find the right adjustments for each component it is pretty illuminating. For each piece, the combined effects are in the component upgrade arena, and all together... sort of a new system! So I am really enjoying it. Wink
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« Last Edit: 03/07/17 at 13:55:15 by will »  

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JOMAN
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #35 - 03/09/17 at 03:56:58
 
I just read through some of the posts and wanted to correct my earlier comment regarding Wills recommendation of a Tungsram 5V4G.  I've been looking at various tube combinations lately and Tungsram is one of the tubes that I have coming but not a rectifier.  As I was posting I was probably thinking Tung-Sol and typed Tungsram.

Will I hope I've got this right, now.

Anyway I did get the Tung-Sol 5V4G St and I like it.  I would still give the nod to the Mullard CV593/GZ32 and I prefer it.  It's a matter of character.  For "serious" listening it's the Mullard, hands down.  For some light hearted fun that still retains a very good measure of resolution, texture and PRaT, probably the Tung-Sol.  So both are keepers for me, like having two different systems.  Whereas the Philips 5Y3GYS, the Winged "C" 5U4G and the Mazda 5Y3 are gone.

I am getting two other rectifiers to compare, another GZ32 and a variant of the 5U4G.  It seems that I'm gravitating to the GZ32 but I don't want to write off the 5U4G just yet.

With these I will be trying groups of Tungsram (yes Tungsram not Tung-Sol) PCC88, 6N23P-EV and Amprex 6DJ8.  The 6DJ8 are in the CSP3 now.  I hope to settle on one group for the input and output positions.

Another tube I will be trying is a Valvo PCC88 "D" Getter.  But I only have a matched pair so I'm not sure just how these will end up being configured...  I couldn't resist buying these for the price that they were.

Although this tube rolling is fun I am not planning on this being an ongoing pursuit.  Once I try the above tubes and combos I will settle on one set.

I may keep the odd tube as my vintage "collectibles", the rest will go.  The Original Box that I got with the Tung-Sol 5V4G along with it being a welded plate "D" Getter will make that tube a collectible for me and possibly a pair of matched NOS Amprex EL84 "D" getter that I have with the original boxes.

Cheers
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #36 - 03/09/17 at 22:55:24
 
Joman,

It is difficult to guess on tubes with your system in transition. Hopefully your headphone experience will translate well to your new amp and speakers. Wink Also, with a “particular” nature, I would be surprised if you would not enjoy some tube variety to change things up now and then once your new setup is tuned…And who knows what might be the best tube combination in that setup, a setup that will likely evolve for a while. Just thinking selling off tubes too fast may not be your friend, especially before you get your new system settled in.

But based on your preferences so far, one tube you may like is a 5R4GY. Variable like other types, generally the good ones sound kind of like a bigger/open GZ32, maybe sort of in-between 5U4G-STs and GZ32s. A 60s Fivre now in my Torii, they are a little louder than my usual Mazda GZ32, a bigger tube sound with great micro information in space and a little rounder bass qualities, similar to good 5U4G-STs….At the same time, they are fast, solid, and open while tending to a little lower key bass emphasis, qualities similar to GZ32/5V4Gs.

This particular tube is a nice example of the 5R4 type in my experience. Transparent and revealing, it is open and fast, with pleasant linearity, complex and expressive detail and texture, excellent spaciousness, and a nice little touch of warm richness that does not contribute thickness or masking. Quite clear and present leading edges and trails, they bring out lots of inner detail and midrange ambient information (at least with my current setup) contributing more to liveness.

Compared to my double D getter Mazda GZ32s, the extra feel of power from the Fivres give a little more space, speed and body, with similarly complex warm textures that lean more toward openness without being hard. At least with what I am listening to so far, Bach solo violin at the moment….they are quite revealing, airy, complex and textured, but also smooth. The Mazda GZ32 is warmer overall and has a bit more of that GZ focus, the 5R4 like a more expressive, more "live" sounding bigger brother. Its power does not translate to thickness and density like you can sometimes get changing from GZ32s to Phillips/Mullard GZ34s. It sounds very revealing, but with convincing natural qualities throughout.

Breaking in and modding a new DAC that is very revealing, I am also using an early 60s Los Gatos labelled American Amperex 6922 in the CSP3 input to smooth things down a little from the Lorenz PCC88 I was using. With it are Mullard E88CCs with parasol getters for power, and a late 50s Mullard GZ32. In the Torii, the Fivre 5R4GYs, Sylvania OB3, British 75C1, Mullard/IEC labelled ECC88s that look like earlier Siemens I have, with early RCA 807s for power.

In the thick of serious listening, tuning/modding the new DAC, the tube changes are welcome…This is a very similar sound neighborhood, but different enough to adjust my way of listening! I think I will keep them in for now.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/5R4GY-CV717-FIVRE-NOS-/310473434591?hash=item4849a8a5df:...
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« Last Edit: 03/09/17 at 23:42:46 by will »  

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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #37 - 03/10/17 at 00:44:58
 
Will, thanks for the lead on the Fivre 5R4GY.  I ordered a couple.

I do agree on your take on the headphones vs. complete system.  At the time that I had the Philips 5R4GYS I did have the Cary and ERR's (I still have the ERR's).  I was able to compare the headphone output to the amp and speakers.  While there were differences there were also similarities.  Certain fundamentals were present in both.  The common fundamentals that I absolutely didn't like became the determining factor.  

The Winged "C" I just plain didn't like and the more time I put on it the more I disliked it (headphones only).  Yet others do like it in their systems.  In reading their comments I did find a common common points of agreement.  One person gave a very positive review ( I could understand why) but I noticed the comment "perhaps a little too airy" and then the hope that it would change when burned in.  That is exactly what I didn't like.  As I gave it time the effect didn't change and I finally felt that it wasn't for me.  However I do have another 5U4G variant on the way so I'm not writing off all 5U4G Rectifiers, yet.

On the other hand the Mullard and Tung-Sol, both related, GZ32 vs 5V4G sound different but I like both. As different as they are they have certain common fundamentals.  As you pointed out there are times that I would enjoy listening with one and then times when I would listen with other in place.

The other thing I notice is that as I give the Tung-Sol more time it improves on me.  Perhaps that will happen with the Fivre 5R4 as well.  It's worth a try.

The down side with the Tung-Sol is that the one I managed to score seems to be quite rare and so I'm reluctant to put a lot of time on it.  Considering the excellent state of the original box and the tube I want it as a keep sake in as good a condition as possible.

However, in all of this it is true that I will only know for sure when the system comes together and is burned in - bummer!

Thanks again

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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #38 - 03/10/17 at 01:17:00
 
Joman, I think the RCA rectifiers are bargains, I have had 50's RCA 5U4Gs in my Amps for years ...Torii and 2.3 WPC Zen monoblocks.  If you like the GZ32 which I haven't heard, the RCA 5V4G is a cheap alternative. I've had them in my Monoblocks for a short while and really enjoy them.  I've bought 7 and paid no more than $15 each shipped per tube.  I will say I bought some 40's RCA double bottom getter 5R4GYs that I only kept in briefly in the monoblocks...I think they were too bright but it's been a long time since I tried them.  Anyway, I thought these might be the ticket for your everyday listening.  Mark
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #39 - 03/10/17 at 02:04:33
 
Hey Mark,

I don't doubt it.  My comments on the 5U4G are specific to the Winged "C" not the RCA.  I haven't heard the RCA 5U4G and I've got quite a number of tubes to roll before I get to it, but I will get to it if only to satisfy my curiosity.

I believe that some of the reviews also rate a specific RCA 5U4G on a price to performance ratio as a very good buy and likely a bargain especially at the price that you have paid.

I tend to take reviews as a starting point and some of them I'm skeptical of.  However when reviews differentiate between components and have a lot in common with independent comments from users then I give them credence.

Anyway, some of these tubes are getting to be very scarce and very expensive, WE422A, U52, GZ34 metal base - crazy money.  The Philips 5R4GYS at one time was $50.00 then went to $100.00 or $125.00 and now is $147.00 Cryoed.  Even the Mullard CV593/GZ32 at one time was $50.00 and now they're $125.00 and going up.  

$125.00 is my upper limit and the tube has to be different and special in some significant way.  So an alternative is welcome.

Thanks for the input.
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #40 - 03/10/17 at 03:39:11
 
Mark I had a quick look at the RCA 5U4G that are for sale and guess what?  There not $15.00 anymore.  Oh well, I'll keep looking.
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #41 - 03/10/17 at 11:03:31
 
Joman, it's the RCA 5V4Gs that I bought recently for $15 shipped max...7 of them...4 different purchases. The last pair arrived yesterday.  My 5U4Gs were bought years ago and may have increased in price.  You were talking about not using your Tungsol 5V4G because it cost so much.

I bought my last pair of RCA 5U4Gs (1954, 1953) on 3/12/2015 for $30 plus $3.11 S&H.  Mark.
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« Last Edit: 03/10/17 at 11:07:22 by mark58 »  

"The man that hath no music in himself, nor is not moved with the concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, deceptions, and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night and his affections dark as Hell. Let no such man be trusted." William Shakespeare
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #42 - 03/10/17 at 14:20:57
 
Mark,  The cost of the Tung-Sol was reasonable, $34.95.  What's holding me back from using it is that I have not come across another like it and it seems to be a bit of history with a totally unexpected level of performance.  One of those things that you stumble upon.

The plates are welded and the narrowest for a 5V4G that I've come across.  The tube does not have a date code but the inner box has a 1940 date.  The company name on the inner box is Tung-Sol Lamp Inc.  This is the original  name before Tung-Sol was acquired and the corporate name modified.  The box is in excellent condition and the inner sleeve still has the dealer tear off tag attached!  Likely NOS.  This is the first tube packaging that I've seen with a tear off tag so that a dealer or someone can keep track.

For me this is a keep sake and I want it to remain in the best condition possible.  I'll burn it in make it part of a small collection of tubes that I want to put in a small display cabinet.

But I will look for an RCA 5V4G.  I just find it amusing that what once was a throw away is now increasing in price.
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #43 - 03/10/17 at 15:22:52
 
RCA "5U4G" is at least four basic tubes, the GBs....short/straight bottle, tall/straight bottle, tall/straight bottle with ST like interior build (no bottom mica)....and then the STs (coke bottle). And each came with different design/material variations over time...AND sound different. Then there are all the other company variations of the type like Raytheon, Sylvania, Tungsol.... before we even mention the Russian variations. Sound-wise, the Russian rectifier construction can put them more in their own category even if they are close electronically, and then there are the Winged Cs, and other variations, also different sounding.

Though some sound closer than others, every single one of them sound different in my experience, especially between versions, like short or tall or fat GBs and STs. Since I can put in an early Raytheon fat bottle GB and an Early Sylvania ST, and have very different sound, calling something a 5U4G is too general to refine knowledge and system sound.
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« Last Edit: 03/10/17 at 19:39:00 by will »  

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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #44 - 03/10/17 at 16:11:03
 
Does that mean that for an audiophile "Life is like a box of tubes"?

Sorry Will, just couldn't help myself.
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #45 - 03/10/17 at 17:53:48
 
In order of favorites:
Rectifier in Zen SE84CKC - 50's RCA 5R4GY (ST). Phillips 5R4GY (ST) is a close second here.

ZP3 -  50's Mullard 5AR4/GZ34 (so good I bought an extra). Have had these in both amps with no need to roll for nearly a year now!
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #46 - 03/11/17 at 15:14:39
 
Will, I guess I've been messing up the nomenclature.  All the rectifiers I've spoken about have been the Coke Bottle versions...5U4G-STs and 5V4G-ST.  Is that the proper way to describe them?

Yesterday I popped a third pair of the 5V4G-STs into the monoblocks.  I was going to put in the original pair I bought into the Torii but then decided to take out of the ZP3 a RCA Black Plate triple mica 5751 and put back in a Sylvania black plate triple mica 5751 that I prefer.  So maybe tomorrow.  Currently I have some 1940's, WWII, Kenrad 5U4G-STs in the Torii...they've been there almost three years.  The rolling continues... Mark.

PS... I really need to try something different in the CP3...it still has the original Valve Art 274B.  I think I tried a RCA 5U4G-ST and didn't like it as much but that was long ago before I corrected my Treble Troubles.  ;)  
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« Last Edit: 03/11/17 at 17:00:34 by mark58 »  

"The man that hath no music in himself, nor is not moved with the concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, deceptions, and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night and his affections dark as Hell. Let no such man be trusted." William Shakespeare
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #47 - 03/11/17 at 16:42:03
 
Those RCA 5U4G-STs are pretty variable when you are particular like you are Mark (and most of the rest of us)...trying to find that ideal blend that best supports your system and room. I think it is especially tricky with a preference for RFT EL34s combined with your need for less obvious tonal definition higher up. To integrate the RFT upper mid clarity just so, your balance is likely to be pretty specific. Some of the RCA 5U4G-STs are dense, darkish, and thick, and others pretty open...so if you have several variations around, it could be worth trying one of each in the place of the Valve Art 274B.

One of your RCA 5V4G-STs might be a really nice replacement to try in the CSP3 too. Easy test! I use a Euro GZ32 or 5V4Gs in the CSP3 almost exclusively...and the RCA 5V4G ST is a warmer variant as far as I can tell, so may be good for your particular needs.
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« Last Edit: 03/11/17 at 16:44:50 by will »  

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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #48 - 03/11/17 at 16:59:36
 
Thanks Will, good plan.  Tomorrow morning I'll replace the Valve Art with a 1944 RCA 5V4G-ST.  274B...that's it...I was too lazy to get up and look at it...haha  Mark.

PS...I just looked across the room and I'm reminded that I still haven't put in the Duelund Cast 10 Ohm resistors I bought before Christmas last year.  The time just never seems right...the Mundorf Supremes are doing a great job anyway. Looking at Parts Connexion now, I see they are 55% off...for anyone interested...

http://www.partsconnexion.com/resistors_duelund_cast.html?utm_source=getresponse...
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« Last Edit: 03/11/17 at 17:18:28 by mark58 »  

"The man that hath no music in himself, nor is not moved with the concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, deceptions, and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night and his affections dark as Hell. Let no such man be trusted." William Shakespeare
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Re: Opinions on rectifier tubes?
Reply #49 - 03/11/17 at 17:35:41
 
I'll be interested in your impressions of the Duelund Carbon Cast resistors Mark. So far they are still too intense for me...a little too powerful in their own sound... powerful signal density. But they are good, no doubt. I love the Duelund Standard Casts here though, so transparent, like they are "not there." They are also on sale again. http://www.partsconnexion.com/resistors_duelund.html

I reckon they are like tubes and cables. For that last few percent of balancing, one or the other is going to be better in different settings. The Mundorfs M-Resists Supremes are really nice though. I bet you will be sort of surprised with how much the Duelunds change things, hopefully loving them! Especially the Carbon Casts do take a long time to settle though, so once you put them in, try to hold with them for some weeks. I think Joman thought they took about 100 hours, and I am thinking this is probably right.
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« Last Edit: 03/12/17 at 01:33:55 by will »  

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