LOWER GAIN preamp tubes for Mark V?

Discussion for the new Mark V

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The Mink
Mark I
Posts: 46
Joined: Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:23 am

LOWER GAIN preamp tubes for Mark V?

Post by The Mink » Wed Sep 12, 2018 1:01 am

Hey Mark V people! I see there are various tube swaps out there for getting huge lead tones, but I'm looking for a specific effect: I've noticed that the Mark V channels 2 and 3 seem to go right from 'almost off' to 'distortion' without a smooth transition phase in between for those 'dirty clean,' 'edge of breakup' tones. I know this is not what this amp is famous for, but I just gotta believe it's possible! So here's what I want to know:

(1.) Are there preamp tubes that are generally lower gain, to increase the transitional 'overdrive' area between anemic and saturated?

(2.) Do the pot values render all this moot if unchanged? Is that where the problem is?

(3.) Will I still be able to get a decent amount of gain (say 2/3 of what was on ta before)?

Thanks in advance!
Lonestar Special, Mark V 90W, Vertical slant 2x12 cab.
ES-335, various G&Ls
"Vintage is in the fingers."

Mark II
Posts: 113
Joined: Sat May 31, 2014 11:00 pm

Re: LOWER GAIN preamp tubes for Mark V?

Post by royslead » Sat Sep 22, 2018 7:32 am

You could probably try rolling in lower gain tubes such as the 12AT7 ( Use a Jan/Phillips); read through the "saturation mod" thread. Channel two edge mode was designed for what you are asking. You could also try this: experiment with settings on channel three in extreme mode. It seems counter-intuitive because of the name, but you can get cleaner than expected tones out of it. Also be aware that the traditional eq (bass, mid, and treble) knobs also add gain (moreso than controlling eq, so back them off; and shape your eq with the graphic 5 band).

Mark I
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Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2016 10:00 pm

Re: LOWER GAIN preamp tubes for Mark V?

Post by Rider1260 » Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:55 pm

I find the EL34 power tubes in mine make it more classic and controllable for me.
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