Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Talk about tubes and their effect on your tone

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TremoJem
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Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by TremoJem » Fri May 06, 2011 6:03 am

What is this tube?

How does it compare to the new Groove Tube 6L6GE?

Of all the 6L6 tubes available from Groove Tubes what is the best, the Chinese, Russian, GE etc?

I would love to purchase NOS but just cannot afford it.

I did some research online and the prices are so far out of my league.

So I am trying to get away from Mesa and I think GT may be the way to go.

They have testing that is similar or better than Mesa.

Your thoughts please.
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J.J
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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by J.J » Fri May 06, 2011 7:41 am

The STR440 is a Chinese tube. As far as I know there is really only one Chinese factory making tubes and you can buy them under many lables.

I was interested in the GT 6L6GE which I think is the one they claim to make with original GE equipment in their own factory. I found more bad reports than good so in the end gave it a miss.

What sound do you want and what amp do you have ?

I know you are interested in Groove tubes, but the tube everyone seems to like is the SED winged C 6l6. The GT 6L6 R2 is a relabled SED tube. I have just put some in my ED and there is an amazing difference over the STR 440. Much better clarity and harmonic retention. The power tube over drive is also much better for me. I did really like the STR440 and would be happy to use them again, but the SED tube has really opened my eyes to what is possible. I was expecting to have to try a few different brands to find the sound I wanted, but guess I just got lucky first time. I'm playing mostly Blues and old school rock.
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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by TremoJem » Fri May 06, 2011 8:44 am

I have two Tremoverbs.

I had read that the 6L6GE was the hot tube for Mesa's.

I do recall about three or four power tubes being mentioned alot and yes, the ones you spoke of are indeed one of them.

I like sparkling, bell, chimey and very dynamic cleans...dynamic in that I can use my guitar and amp along with my playing style to get great tone and sensitivity etc., pushed but just on the edge of break up before you really push all three in combination to get some break up.

This is very easy to do currently.

My gain is classic or vintage, but I tend to try to sound like Gregg Howe or Vai/Satriani and use TC Electronics for chorus, delay, reverb etc.

Very little effects but enough are used.

So now it comes down to figuring out what is acceptable and trying it.

I am sad to hear about the GE ones as I heard so much about the great sound. Maybe what is happening is that NOS is good but the GT reissue is bad. That would totally make sense.

I need to find an affordable acceptable new replacement tube because I can't afford the rolling procedure.

I just took stock of 12 Mesa 12AX7 for the preamp section, but want to try different power tubes.

Oh well time will tell.

Thanks Brother.
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swbo101
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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by swbo101 » Fri May 06, 2011 9:20 am

As a previous poster said =C= SED 6L6s. Give them a try. I believe they are on sale @ tube depot until next week.
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J.J
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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by J.J » Fri May 06, 2011 9:24 am

I do have some GE old GE tubes in another amp, and they great. It is just the new production ones that I think are not so good, but I have not tried them to know for myself.

As for the SED =C= they are as good as any tube I have heard NOS or new. They are a very hifi sounding and really capture the natural sound of my guitar. Unfortunatly I don't have any experiance with other new 6L6 tubes, although I am sure others will be able to tell you very good things about some of the other tubes too.

For sparkling clean the SED is amazing. My ED sounds so much sweeter and detailed and all the sparkle and chime is there. They do seem to have more headroom and I ordered a set of the same range and the yellow Mesa tube that came in my ED.

Having been on a mission to get a good SRV tone , these tube are delivering what I have not been able to get tone wise for years. I am now prefering the ED clean mode over my Fender DRRI. The breakup as mentioned is quite progressive and does not jump out (unless you wnat it too). I find the STR440 to sound brash and almost artifical in comparision when pushed (though I do still like what the 440 does).

Lead tones are very focused and clear, but one area I have not figured out yet is the dirtier crunch type tones. So far my crunch tone seems to be a little to clean and polite. I'm sure with a bit of work it will come good. The STR440 was just naturally grainier sounding which I guess it what is making the difference.

So far the Tungsol 12ax7 Ri is the best new tube I have found and it further improves the ED clean. Still NOS is better (I have a NOS Mullard ECC83), but I refuse to pay the money for NOS.

Anyway, hope you find what you want first time around. I was able to just get a pair of power tubes for the ED which does have a quad in its power stage, but it has a half power mode which only uses one pair. This meant I didn't have to buy a quad striaght up to find out if I liked them or not. Does the Tremoverb have half power mode ?
Triple Crown 50 combo
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TremoJem
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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by TremoJem » Fri May 06, 2011 10:48 am

The Tremoverb does allow the user to run at half power.

Many posts I read led me to believe it is not worth the savings and to run at full power. It is not an option designed into the amp, but instead the user pulls two power tubes and one rectifier tube.

I am really interested in the SEDs you speak of. I have heard other speak to these as well.

I like the fact that it has the cleans, but wonder about the gain stage for vintage gain.

I will admit that the gain stage for this amp is high so I should not have to worry about getting enough gain, I hope.

I also hate to admit that I run the RED channel on Modern and have the gain all the way up.

This allows me to use my guitar to change everything and when necessary have enormous gain potential. I realize it is compressed and not as dynamic at full potential, but it has been my experience that it is the best gain I have ever used of all the pedals, amps, racks, or anything I have ever used, with regards to tone, dynamics, push, headroom, etc. in all my 30 plus years of playing progressive/heavy/jazz/classic rock.

I will check into these, thanks again everyone.
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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by J.J » Fri May 06, 2011 8:16 pm

I doubt you will loose any gain by chaging to SED =C= or probably most of the other 6l6 tubes. what will be different is the nature of the gain. If you wanted a really crunchy or furry tube then the SED =C= may not be for you as they are a very clear sounding tube. On the other hand high gain tones can be made to sound exceptionally pure and liquid.

What I meant about using just one pair of tubes is that you can find out if you like them without buying 4x. If you do like them then go and get a second pair. If the tremoverb is not designed to run on one pair, I would be a bit relucatant to do so as impedance and voltage changes in the circuit will change the tone and feel and you may not get a true indication.
Triple Crown 50 combo
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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by J.J » Fri May 06, 2011 8:16 pm

Deleted due to double up.
Triple Crown 50 combo
Electra Dyne and Royal Atlantic heads
Express 5:25 1x12 combo
JCM800 2203
Deluxe reverb reissue
Traditional 2x12, 4x10 and 23" 1x12 cabs.

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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by TremoJem » Sun May 08, 2011 1:55 pm

You make a good point and I am interested in the SED.

I will have to think on this and take the plunge if necessary.
Ibanez Jem 7VWH > Bad Horsie II Wah > Radial JX-2 ABY Switch > Two Tremoverb Combos
Mesa Channel Switch DTDP & Mesa FXLoop Switch DTDP
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Series FXLoop

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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by stevefulltone » Fri May 13, 2011 4:52 am

Hi, this is my first post. I didn't see an introductory thread, so here goes. I'm Steve, based in Spain and I gig with a Mesa F-50.

I hope it's ok to join this thread.

I need to change the power tubes in my F-50 and the only brand my local shop had was a pair of Groove Tubes 6L6S. According to the Groove Tube website this tube has a bias of -49.7 VDC. I think, but I'm not sure, that this exceeds the bias for the F-50. This is my first Boogie Amp, a before I just used Marshalls, so I was wondering if I could stick these Groove Tubes in it.

Another shop has Mesa Tubes, but it's a 2 hour drive away. Typical, huh?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Steve.

P.S what a great resource this site is.

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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by TremoJem » Fri May 13, 2011 5:47 am

Sorry Steve...I have nothing, I barely know what I am doing.

Thanks to this forum I am learning.

Try posting where your amp is featured, you will probably have better results...good luck brother.
Ibanez Jem 7VWH > Bad Horsie II Wah > Radial JX-2 ABY Switch > Two Tremoverb Combos
Mesa Channel Switch DTDP & Mesa FXLoop Switch DTDP
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Assorted Tubes
Series FXLoop

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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by stevefulltone » Fri May 13, 2011 7:33 am

Thanks, Jem.

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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by TremoJem » Fri May 13, 2011 8:26 am

Your welcome brother.
Ibanez Jem 7VWH > Bad Horsie II Wah > Radial JX-2 ABY Switch > Two Tremoverb Combos
Mesa Channel Switch DTDP & Mesa FXLoop Switch DTDP
TC Electronic G-Major & Ernie Ball Volume Pedal & Behringer FCB 1010
Assorted Tubes
Series FXLoop

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yeti
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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by yeti » Fri May 13, 2011 9:59 pm

i've used the groove tube 5881/ 6l6r (sovteks) rated 4-7 for about 10 or 12 hours. i dont love them but they'd get me through a gig. at gig volumes, they feel mushy and slower than at lower volumes, which, i dont like at all for my style of playing. they are fizzy if you push them hard (when they finally do break up) and i didn't like that at the time either (i have since modded my amp, so i may give them another go round).

i took a stab at a matched quad of ruby 6l6r http://www.guitarcenter.com/Ruby-6L6GC- ... 1125583.gc from guitar center online...and they were here in 2 days.

i love them. they sound HUGE at gig volumes, and retain punch and clarity..and for 50 bux, honestly, they were way worth it. im in the same boat that i just can't justify spending matched quad NOS money, or even 100+ on a quad of power tubes right now. at some point, yes, i'll have my dream amp with the tubes i want, just not right now.

i've been chasing the preamp tube dragon for about a year or so now....and found that they will definitely affect your tone in a bigger way than power tubes will. i bought a tube lot from a guy and there were 5-6 ge and sylvania 6l6 tubes. 2 of them matched close enough in my tester and the rest tested bad, so i put the matched ones in my amp in the middle slot and biased it up......they sounded REALLY good to my ears and felt great. so, there's fun to be had there...but in the mean time, the rubys will work for me. they may work for you too.

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J.J
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Re: Mesa "STR440"? Need some help from you guru rollers!

Post by J.J » Sat May 14, 2011 3:52 am

From what I tell the Ruby 6L6 in the link is the same tube as the Mesa STR440 (Chinese Shuguang origin). I am not suprised you like them, I think they are a good sounding tube and very good value (Unless you get them from Mesa :wink: )
Triple Crown 50 combo
Electra Dyne and Royal Atlantic heads
Express 5:25 1x12 combo
JCM800 2203
Deluxe reverb reissue
Traditional 2x12, 4x10 and 23" 1x12 cabs.

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