Q: What does the extra lettering like WA, or GTB mean?
A: This list is incomplete, but it may help.GTA: when found in 6SN7 it has a higher plate dissipation
GTB: quick heating version of GTA. For Hifi GTA and GTB are the same.
WGT, W, WA, WB: were sold to the military.
B: Cylinder glass. 5U4GB is the cylinder glass version of the 5U4G
JAN: Check under "Test processes"
S: Can be found on many tubes, indicates a special version. Can be anything, but for one tube number is it normally the same.
SQ: Special Quality. These have "SQ" data sheets What is special, is in the data sheet.
TEST PROCESSES / MILITARY
Q: What does JAN in front of the part number mean?
Q: What are "VT" tubes?
Beware for internet getters specialists that are none. These are the same people that replace mathematics by astrology.
Q: Can I recognize good vacuum by judging the getter?
Q: Can I recognize bad vacuum by judging the getter?
Q: When the getter shows signs of use, is the tube bad?
Q: When the getter is bad, is the tube bad?
Q: So, when is a getter bad?
Q: What is SYLVANIA CHROME TOP?
Q: Why are CHROME TOPS better, when the getter is not working any more?
Q: Some tubes have "powdered" gray plates, some have shiny gray plates, others have black plates. Some have even white plates. What is the difference?
A: Powdered gray plates is the latest technology. The plates are sprayed with a special graphite paint. This only works with the later type (so called "cold") getters. Used since the 1950's, until today. (Our standard process at Emission Labs)
Non shiny dark black plates have a carbonized surface. With this technology nothing can go wrong. Only, it produces big fat clouds of DIOXENE during production, and this process is ABSOLUTELY forbidden since decades in any country that respects human life. For those who know, for this process the poisonous "benzene" fluid is burned in a chimney , but without giving enough oxygen to it. So inside the chimney a stinking fat cloud occurs. You just hang the plate in this smoke for some minutes, and it is covered with a fat layer of black dirt. During production, when the plates are heated, the dioxin gas is set free, and pumped out of the tube. What is left is a pure carbon layer. DIOXENE and PLUTONIUM are the most poisonous materials that exist. Both will cause genetic defects, no matter how small portion you were exposed to, no matter how short. In larger doses it will cause cancer. So even if you don't get cancer from it, your children can get inherited genetic defects. In the USA and West Europe, Philips and GE stopped with it first, RCA was the last. In East Europe was still used until some years ago. The Chinese still use the process today. It works cheap, and needs no expertise. To get rid of the poisonous gas, they just open the windows of the factory. (bon apetit...)
Shiny black-grey plates. A few methods can be used to produce this coating. By treating carbonized nickel, the shiny gray Nickel-Carbide surface results from it as well. Difficult process, requiring expertise. Perfectly under control by Sylvania. Very rare with ECC81....88 types. Keep those if you find them.
White plates. These have no treatment at all. Can be shiny or opaque. Results in lower dissipation, and larger size plates, but less production steps, so less risk on contamination.
Mesh plates. Originally used because this gives higher dissipation, and uses less (expensive) tube grade nickel. The higher dissipation comes from the fact that one plate can partially radiate heat THROUGH the other one. Also the filament heat can be radiated directly through the holes. Today, this process is very difficult to repeat. Will result in fully resonance free plates. Today only made by Emission Labs. Good made mesh tubes have LONGER lifetime than standard tubes.
Semi mesh plates. Used by TJ/Fullmusic, just from nickel plate with holes in it. Process is taken from CRT mask (Color TV Tubes). Doesn't seem to give the sound advantage of real mesh, but sure looks nice. This material seems to be not ideally suited for making anodes from it, and the tubes can become gassy.
Titanium plates. No titanium, but titanium coating. A way to make the plates light gray Very interesting and very reliable coating process.
RE-GLUE A TUBE SOCKET
Q: How can I repair that?
A1: Not with 10-seconds glue. It will come off again, dissatisfaction guaranteed. At Ebay, it seems this is what everybody is doing here. mmm ;(
A2: Perhaps two components glue, but the temperature coefficient is not the same as glass. You can not use it with ceramic or metal sockets. This will break the glass later, but also with normal sockets this can cause glass breakage. Risky repair, not recommended.
A3: Original tube glue, as used by manufacturers can also be used, but not when the glass is older than 20 years. Otherwise the glass will break. Either during the baking of the glue, or later on stock it can crack also. Risky repair, not possible when the glass is older.
A4: Use the special tube repair glue from Emission Labs. This glue is magic, and can repair any tube that has some remains of the old glue inside. It partially solves the old glue, and will give no visible signs of the repair.
Q: Is the tube bad?
Q: How do I burn in a new tube, and why?
A: Check here
LIST OF TUBE BRANDS + LOGOS
As complete as can be. 10 pages at the moment. Check here
Q: How can I recognize if a Valvo or Philips tube was made by Mullard?