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aliveatfive

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I strongly suggest that all ML owners who own (or wish to own someday) tubed equipment, read this week's Stereophile online (stereophile.com). The largest tube manufacturer in the world it seems, is located in Saratov, Russia. They manufacture Sovtek, TungSol, Electro Harmonic, etc., etc. Almost all the tubed production of ARC, BAT Conrad Johnson, McIntosh, and others, use these valves. Because the factory was acquired by an American (Mike Matthews) some years ago, it has been under attack by Russian corporate raiders. There are some suggestions in Stereophile's piece about contacting certain officials for the invocation of justice on Mr. Matthew's part. I think that this is at least worth a read. Our tube future might be in jeopardy.
 
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Robin

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McIntosh uses Sovtek tubes...

aliveatfive said:
I strongly suggest that all ML owners who own (or wish to own someday) tubed equipment, read this week's Stereophile online (stereophile.com). The largest tube manufacturer in the world it seems, is located in Saratov, Russia. They manufacture Sovtek, TungSol, Electro Harmonic, etc., etc. Almost all the tubed production of ARC, BAT Conrad Johnson, Macintosh, and others, use these valves. Because the factory was acquired by an American (Mike Matthews) some years ago, it has been under attack by Russian corporate raiders. There are some suggestions in Stereophile's piece about contacting certain officials for the invocation of justice on Mr. Matthew's part. I think that this is at least worth a read. Our tube future might be in jeopardy.
aliveatfive,

Yes, I am concidering the McIntosh tubed mono blocks MC 275 and they use Sovtek tubes extensively... :rolleyes: I found this article from the NY times:

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/05/16/business/worldbusiness/16cheat.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

It confirms your information. It looks to be a new form of Russian - White collar, organized crime "mob", attacking mid-level companies based in Russia. I just hope Mr. Matthews can withstand their tactics and stay in business. :eek:
 

aliveatfive

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Robin

I also read the article in the NY Times. It was published exactly one week ago today. I posted a reference to it on this board at that time,but I wasn't too concerned about it from the tone of the author. Today's story in Stereophile has me more concerned, to say the least. Every component that I own, with the exception of my CD (multi)player, uses tubes.
 

Robin

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Other High Quality Tube Manufacturers...

aliveatfive,

I was just wondering about where the high quality tubes are currently made in the world today? We know Mike Matthews (USA) manufactures his Sovtek in Russia. :eek:
I know from MarkNewbie, told me (us) about Bendix Red Banks tubes were manufactured by the US military (for use in ICBM's), until the mid sixties. Mark used to talk about another USA company, I believe it was Westinghouse or General Electric (GE), yeah, I think it was GE tubes that were of high quality. Does GE still manufacture tubes or maybe Japan, Korea or China? Where else could you aquire high quality tubes? :confused:
 

Craig

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aliveatfive

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Robin said:
aliveatfive,

I was just wondering about where the high quality tubes are currently made in the world today? We know Mike Matthews (USA) manufactures his Sovtek in Russia. :eek:
I know from MarkNewbie, told me (us) about Bendix Red Banks tubes were manufactured by the US military (for use in ICBM's), until the mid sixties. Mark used to talk about another USA company, I believe it was Westinghouse or General Electric (GE), yeah, I think it was GE tubes that were of high quality. Does GE still manufacture tubes or maybe Japan, Korea or China? Where else could you aquire high quality tubes? :confused:
Robin -

There has been no American production of tubes for years. American production that you can buy today is usually called NOS (new old stock.) That simply means stuff that was produced years ago that was never used. Interestingly, most tube production today comes from former Communist-bloc countries. In addition to Russia, a good deal of tube production comes from mainland China. What particularly worries me is that tubes like the 6H30 (a preamp tube) are only available from Mike Matthews' New Sensor Corp. Tubes such as 12AX7, 12AU7, KT88, 6550 are produced in several other countries. Conrad-Johnson, ARC and BAT all use 6H30s in their new preamps. I wonder how this will all shake out? BTW, I just got a set of 8 matched new 6550s from China that have been cryoed (frozen and unfrozen.) I don't know if this is snake oil or some truly valuable practice. I'll let you know in a future post. I don't think your future McIntosh monoblocs use anything exotic enough for you to be concerned about.

PS - American production tubes (like the GE 6550) are hideously expensive. I've seen those GEs for $250 for a matched pair.
 
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Robin

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Why? Why can't the USA do it again?

aliveatfive said:
There has been no American production of tubes for years. American production that you can buy today is usually called NOS (new old stock.) That simply means stuff that was produced years ago that was never used.

PS - American production tubes (like the GE 6550) are hideously expensive. I've seen those GEs for $250 for a matched pair.
aliveatfive,

Why can't we start producing tubes again? USA used to produce the worlds best state-of-the-art tubes. The Best of the best in tubes came from here. Why did Mike Matthews have to go to another country (Russia) just to manufacture tubes? :confused: One reason might be; Because the factory already existed and was set-up (tooled-up)for tube production... It seem a shame though that the good old USA, can't figure a way to do it again, especially if their is a continuing and on-going need / demand specifically in the audio / music world. You'd think the amplifier companies would get together and go in on a tube factory somewhere... :rolleyes:
 

jjqiv

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Robin said:
aliveatfive,

Why can't we start producing tubes again? USA used to produce the worlds best state-of-the-art tubes. The Best of the best in tubes came from here. Why did Mike Matthews have to go to another country (Russia) just to manufacture tubes? :confused: One reason might be; Because the factory already existed and was set-up (tooled-up)for tube production... It seem a shame though that the good old USA, can't figure a way to do it again, especially if their is a continuing and on-going need / demand specifically in the audio / music world. You'd think the amplifier companies would get together and go in on a tube factory somewhere... :rolleyes:
Tube production is a labor intensive art. Labor costs in the US are too expensive.
 

SteveInNC

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Demand is another issue. The Soviet Union used tubes in much of their military electronics, including avionics for the MIG-25. There is some speculation that this was intentional because tubes are significantly more resistant to EMP from a nuke blast.
 

Robin

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The more I know the more the less I like whats happening to Mike Matthews...

aliveatfive said:
I strongly suggest that all ML owners who own (or wish to own someday) tubed equipment, read this week's Stereophile online (stereophile.com). The largest tube manufacturer in the world it seems, is located in Saratov, Russia. They manufacture Sovtek, TungSol, Electro Harmonic, etc., etc. Almost all the tubed production of ARC, BAT Conrad Johnson, McIntosh, and others, use these valves. Because the factory was acquired by an American (Mike Matthews) some years ago, it has been under attack by Russian corporate raiders. There are some suggestions in Stereophile's piece about contacting certain officials for the invocation of justice on Mr. Matthew's part. I think that this is at least worth a read. Our tube future might be in jeopardy.
It just doesn't make any sense to me... :confused:
Why can't the most impacted / affected audio companies like ARC, BAT, Conrad Johnson, McIntosh and others band together, as they are most directly affected by this potenially devistating blow to one of their primary supplier (Mike Matthews - Sovtek, TungSol, Electro Harmonic, etc., etc.) and help / assist Mr. Matthews during this apparent attack by white collar organized crime in Russia. You would think it would be to their advantage to offer financial or other aid and assistance to Mr Matthews. :confused: I just hope Mike Matthews's tube manufacturing company can withstand the attacks. I hope that all the other companies involved and affected do the right thing, by helping, when it's needed most. :eek:
 

aliveatfive

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I'm wondering if conventional wisdom states that the only counter-move we can make is to stock up on what we need right now? I'd hate to find out 2 years from now that my beloved components are worthless because it's impossible to get tubes for them. What do you think? Do any of you people have any plans to take action?
 

twich54

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ouch!!, I haven't even got my new LS-26 broken in yet, let alone having to think about "stockpiling' tubes !!! ???
 
T

TheDick

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The Saratov company is not the only supplier of high-end audio tubes in Russia. The SED Winged "C" series of tubes is manufactured in St Petersburg. These are actually the original Svetlana tubes and might be a better choice for ARC or Macintosh owners anyway (especially for power tubes).
 

Robin

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Great Information - Thank You...

TheDick said:
The Saratov company is not the only supplier of high-end audio tubes in Russia. The SED Winged "C" series of tubes is manufactured in St Petersburg. These are actually the original Svetlana tubes and might be a better choice for ARC or Macintosh owners anyway (especially for power tubes).
TheDick,

:D Welcome to the ML Club!
Yes, Thank you very much for the great information regarding the Svetlana Tube company. :D I looked them up on-line and found more about the history of the Svetlana Tube company:

http://koti.mbnet.fi/siliconf/JukkaTolonen/ga/v&tnews/svetlana.html

Thanks again... :D
 

amey01

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aliveatfive said:
I'm wondering if conventional wisdom states that the only counter-move we can make is to stock up on what we need right now? I'd hate to find out 2 years from now that my beloved components are worthless because it's impossible to get tubes for them. What do you think? Do any of you people have any plans to take action?

I think there are too many 12AX7 / 6922 based systems out there for me to worry about it, but if you're using exotic valves I would think it prudent to keep at least one replacement set at all times anyway.
 

twich54

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TheDick said:
The Saratov company is not the only supplier of high-end audio tubes in Russia. The SED Winged "C" series of tubes is manufactured in St Petersburg. These are actually the original Svetlana tubes and might be a better choice for ARC or Macintosh owners anyway (especially for power tubes).
Hello "Tricky", I think what "Aliveatfive" was refering to was the 6H30 tube which I believe is only mfg by the one company. It is the tube used in the new line of ARC pre's as well as BAT.
 

aliveatfive

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You're correct, Dave. I believe there are some old stock versions of 6H30s lying around (probably in BAT's warehouse) but these cost about 50 bucks a tube. A re-tube for my VK 51SE would therefore run about $400. Guess I have to bite the bullet.
 

twich54

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aliveatfive said:
You're correct, Dave. I believe there are some old stock versions of 6H30s lying around (probably in BAT's warehouse) but these cost about 50 bucks a tube. A re-tube for my VK 51SE would therefore run about $400. Guess I have to bite the bullet.

$400......Gulp !! I guess I'm fortunate that my LS-26 only uses two of them !!

Tell me am I correct to believe that their are several variations / quality levels of the 6H30's ??
 

aliveatfive

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Dave -

There are several incarnations of 6H30s as far as I know. EH was supposed to produce a gold-pin version. I don't know if it actually was ever shipped. BAT versions are supposed to be "selected" stock. I bought a few Sovteks about a year ago, just in case. I've yet to listen to them in my preamp, although I tried them in my ARC VT 100 III with no change in the sound of that amp. If I'm not mistaken, ARC also charges about $50 a tube for replacements.
 

Robin

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Svetlana Tube Company...

aliveatfive, Dave and amey01

It seems that the Svetlana Tube Company in Russia will be adding all sorts of newly manufactured tubes to their line-up, let us hope, they consider adding the 6H30 or a new and improved version of the 6H30 tube a least... ;) The Svetlana Tube Company is in the process of expanding and adding new tubes to their tube line all the time. Svetlana seems to be the preeminent/predominate tube company in Russia from what I've been able to find, lately - researching on line... :)
 
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