Favorite Rectifier Tubes (and why)

I have been asked on several occasions on the relative merits of different rectifier tubes and what influences my decision to use a specific brand or model. Over the next several blog entries I will try to explain my own personal views regarding the differences between them as well as whether or not there is an audible difference between types or even between manufacturers of the same type of rectifier. 

1st lets start with the question: Why a rectifier TUBE at all? Why not a Solid-State rectification circuit? After all, Solid-State rectifiers are less expensive, easily implemented, don't generally fail, have less voltage-drop and require less space. ? My answer is simple.......Empirically, they don't SOUND as good. Let's remember, I am NOT a scientist. I am merely a music-lover. Anything I discover to be A-Musical, is immediately discarded in favor of a replacement that does as little damage to the emotional content of the music as possible.

To Be fair, it is important to define the context of the above statement... In Single-Ended circuits, the current draw is relatively constant irrespective of "volume-level". This being said, the demands placed on the amplifiers' power supply is likewise constant and the issue of "Sag" (ie., saturation of the power transformer to the point of no longer being able to supply the current/voltage needs of the circuit in question...such as occurs in "Push-Pull" circuits - typically guitar amplifiers and such) is generally non-existent. 

Therefore, based solely on "sound-quality", in my Single-Ended Circuits, I will NEVER use anything other than tube rectification...

Stay tuned for my next installment where I will explain (to the best of my abilities) how my rectifier selection process works.... Cheers! Matt.

Matt Formanek