#173231  by zozoe
Greetings ~ ok, w/o me needing a 2nd mortgage, for the 1st input of my McIntosh MC30, what might be the most robust, quiet & reliable tubes out there? I have tons of all kinds for my amps, but this one needs to be special.... I don't care to go down that NOS road for a hundred or so bucks, but what's in the next tier down from 'there'?
Good listening ya'll 🎶 🕉🎵
 #173233  by Jon S.
Pedigree is less important than performance, and V1 is more important than any other tube position. Take your amp to a qualified tech with his own in-house tube stash and select the best match for your amp regardless of what the label says. My experience is this approach is far superior tonally - and more cost-effective in the long run - than taking a crap shoot on ordering one or two of any specific tube type because of the intrinsic variations between tubes even within the same batch from a single manufacturer.
 #173238  by strumminsix
Tubes are weird. What sounds great in 1 amp, might sound so-so in another. Reco is always to have a few of each tube you need on hand.

Also, that so-so tube might be EXACTLY what's needed when your primo tube takes a shit.