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Old 17th September 2019, 10:12 AM
Cycleallday Cycleallday is offline
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Andover, Hants
Posts: 87
Default Valve Life

Could somebody give me the estimated life of each valve type (hrs) in my WD amps as follows:

2 x Mullard ECF80s
4 x eL84/Russian 6P14Ps

Phono 3
3 x ECC83/12AX7s

Just planning to get a spare set or two to see me out as prices seem to be rising s they get rarer.

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Old 17th September 2019, 05:18 PM
bob orbell bob orbell is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: kettering northants.
Posts: 2,101
Default Re: Valve Life

Depends on two things Mel, how often the amp is used and how loud you use it, you only need to bother about the power valve's, the small signal valve's may last a life time or more, but if you plan on keeping the amp it won't hurt to buy now but keep the new valves safe and dry. Bob
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Old 17th September 2019, 10:24 PM
Richard Richard is online now
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Notts
Posts: 5,026
Default Re: Valve Life

Hi Mel,

EL84 are run quite hard and tend to run hot so 2-3000 hours. ECF80 probably 10-20000 hours and ECC83 in Phono 3 are only running at 1mA so probably 50000+ hours.

3000 hours is only a few months if running continuously. Remember a class A amp runs them near max dissipation regardless of playing music or idling. When I was working at home and running valve amps continuously during daytime hours I got through a set of 6550 in under 2 years and bought 3 sets at a time. Switching off between using for a few hours in the evenings may well see them lasting 10 years.

Similar applies to your small valves, a couple of years continuously may wear them out (I have tested many small ex-equipment military valves which are worn out) but a few hours a day will see them last a very long time
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Old 18th September 2019, 11:18 AM
Cycleallday Cycleallday is offline
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Andover, Hants
Posts: 87
Default Re: Valve Life

Thanks a lot Richard thats just the information I needed.

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