Lots of character!
By: Richie from Plugged in somewhere in Central PA
Would you consider this product to be made well? How dependable?
Your general opinion of this product.
A Story; Once upon a time last month, my amp was sounding uninspiring. I retubed my 9200 power amp with short bottle 5881s to fit the lid on & had it biased. It's been a few years & it's worked long hours, mostly for writing & recording, but I didn't get what I expected from the tune up. I found AMS, liked their selection & prices & ordered new speaker cables, a new guitar cable & two 12AX7EHs for the JMP1 preamp. I replaced them 1 at a time to hear the result & had a slight improvement with each. Cables matter! The 12AX7EHs were added last. They seriously impressed me & were the cure. I didn't expect THAT much of a difference between the sound of EH vs Groove Tube, but WOW! .. the difference is extremely noticeable on the first note. It's more like when the amp was new. I only had the GT 12AX7C in my Marshall JMP1 before this for about a year. They were good, but nothing special. The GTs sounded bland, even new compared to character of the EH tubes. Everything's great now! The End.
Playability and Feel
How does it feel, Heavy, Fast, Chunky? How was the neck? Are the controls easy to get to while playing?
Bright and snappy? Dark and smooth? Were the pickups hot, mellow, thick, thin?
Tonal character of the 12AX7EHs in my preamp = smooth, sweet highs, pleasant mids and chunky bottom, emphasizing the low mids more than the lows. They definitely are smooth and don't have a harsh edged saturation. They sing. I guess that's why some info says they are "musical sounding".
Don't think twice!
Pretty cool tubes if you ask me.
I also have an EQ in my rig to fine tune my sound, but you do need something good to EQ or you'll get nowhere. Sound is a personal thing, but like everything else that's built, the right tools and foundation make a big difference in the result. Tubes are like tone bricks in your sound structure and these have pleasant sonic qualities. They sound ... "alive" is good description. Nice sound! It's almost like I added a pedal instead of new tubes. They add something. The GTs didn't add the same saturation that these do when pushed. So .. yeah. I like 'em.
How did the stain or paint job look?
How was the action out of the box?