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Amperex

Amperex ECC82 12AU7 Tube w/ Red Tip - Rare Siemens Label - Holland 1969 - NOS

Amperex ECC82 12AU7 Tube w/ Red Tip - Rare Siemens Label - Holland 1969 - NOS

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Amperex ECC82 12AU7 Tube w/ Red Tip - Rare Siemens Label - Holland 1969  - NOS

Tube Summary

The "textbook Heerlen sound" has been referenced in several Soundlumia listings of Holland 12AU7 tubes, and many tube enthusiasts asked what that all means. So this is the answer: the 1950s and 1960s tone from Heerlen, the beginning of over a decade's excellence in sound, the classic tonal template for all the great (and greater) Amperex/Philips/Valvo/Miniwatt tubes to be made in the years to come, the timeless Philips radio tone that many of us grew up listening to. And the Siemens-labeled Holland ECC82 tubes such as this one are extremely hard to find today, let alone a select tube w/ the lovely red tip.

Sound Characteristics 

The most distinctive sound feature of the Heerlen ECC82's is the transparent, natural and expansive midrange presentation, with a slight touch of warmth that illuminates your music. Every piece of music you play through these tubes sounds like from a vinyl record, whether your sound source is phono or not. The sound stage is spacious, deep and structured. Bass is incredibly deep but well controlled and feels as accurate as on the high end German ECC82's (Siemens, Telefunken, Valvo etc.)  We would recommend these as an excellent alternative if you are seeking the high end Holland ECC82 tubes that can deliver the legendary Philips house sound flawlessly. 

Professional Sound Evaluation

The tube worked wonderfully and sounded terrific in our professional studio setup for monitoring. 

 - Input: Cambridge Audio CXC V2 dedicated CD transport + Schiit Audio Bifrost 2 Multibit DAC
 - Amplification: Handcrafted Bottlehead Crack Headphone amplifier
 - Output: Neumann NDH 20 Closed Back Studio Headphones

Our full tube sound review was written 100% based on the actual listening experience while this tube was running in the system described above.

Appearance & cosmetic condition

Nearly 100% of the paint and lettering is intact on this tube, and the acid-etched Philips Heerlen date code is perfectly visible: 

delta 9A1 (delta = Heerlen, 9 = 1960, G = July, 2 = Week 2 of the production month)

Professional Tube Testing

NO short, leakage or gas. NO noise or microphonics.

This tube tested NOS (100%+ of nominal mutual conductance) and 100% balanced on a Mercury 2000 tube tester with the following result (mutual conductance both in uMhos and in percentage of nominal): 

3,100/3,240(103%/108%)

Good tubes start at 2000 and new tubes (incl. NOS/NIB) 3,000 - 3,100, and the Mercury 2000's rated mutual conductance (nominal) for new tubes is 3,000. Test result can also be seen in the pictures. In case you wonder what all these numbers mean to your sound experience, it's actually quite straightforward: mutual conductance directly translates to a tube's ability to amplify sound, so the higher the numbers the better. 
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