Best EL84 Tubes

best el84 tubesIf you are using tube amp for quite a sometime, then you must know how hard it is finding a suitable replacement amp tubes in the market. Most of the standard tube amp either get blown out easily or worn out after a short period.

Another major issue with an ordinary tube amp is that the sound starts fading with time, and they lose pristine quality. Replacing your old one with the best EL84 tube will be a smart decision.

An el84 tube will not only notch up the audio output of your amp but will also add a sweet tone with terrific sustain.

So to help you to find the best models, our experts have created of list of some of the finest el84 tubes that will amplify your amp’s output.

1. Groove Tubes GT-EL84-S Medium Duet EL84 Tube

When it comes to upgrading your stock tube in low-wattage amplifiers, one model that serves as an undisputed choice of every guitarist is Groove Tubes GT-EL84-S.

Groove Tubes GT-EL84-S

Key Features:

  • 5-8watt power output.
  • Smooth and clean tone.
  • Subtle overdrive distortion.
  • Rich harmonics.
  • Manufacturer’s warranty.

Features Overview:

Groove Tubes GT-EL84-S is not your average amp tube with a low price; instead, it is a competitively priced duet amplifier tube designed to take the audio delivery to a new height.

With a power output ranging between 5watts and 8-watts, it assists your amp to ooze out clean and smooth audio that will perfectly serve your home jamming session. It also serves as a brilliant choice for jazz and bass guitarists who desire to get the rich tone out of their amp.

All thanks to the sparkling top-end and splendid harmonic response, not only will it facilitate an enjoyable rehearsal but will also help you during recordings.

Surprisingly this top el84 tubes pack the well-known pentode that was found in old AC30 amps so you can expect it to get a warm tone while playing a piece.

However, it changes its characteristics when you push it to overdrive, and it churns out an aggressive yet subtle overdrive distortion with a responsive tone. The tubes are matched and designed to produce a splendid audio performance at a different output level.

R1 to R3 level is suitable for early distortion and soft attack while R4 to R7 is for all-round performance. However, R8 to R10 serves as the most dynamic range for clean and low breakup output.

This tube is known for its durability because it goes through many rigorous tests in the manufacturing division.

Pros
  • Sparkling tone with soft overdrive.
  • It suits most of the genres.
  • Durable build quality.
  • It will fit in all class A amps.
Pros
  • Poor lifespan.
  • It often causes rattling noise.

Verdict:

If you are thinking of upgrading the sound delivery of your low-wattage amp without spending ah huge chunk, then adding Groove Tubes GT-EL84-S is the best option.

2. JJ Electronics T-EL84-JJ-MP EL84 Amplifier Tube

JJ Electronics T-EL84-JJ-MP is a highly rated matched pair el84 tube that is designed to cater to all music genres without compromising on anything.

JJ Electronics T-EL84-JJ-MP

Key Features:

  • Broad tonal range.
  • Available in single, pair and quad.
  • Rugged construction.
  • Wide sound variety.
  • Fluidic harmonics.

Features Overview:

We can confidently say, when you will introduce JJ Electronics T-EL84-JJ-MP to your old amp, it will surely leave you in awe with its sound performance. Whether you want to play jazz, metal, or rock, it is designed to deliver smooth audio performance in all the genres.

What sets it apart? It’s ability to produce music with tight low end, sparkling mid-range, and shimmering high-end, thus ensuring you a great jamming or recording session. Due to its splendid audio quality, it is widely as a replacement amp tube in top-end Hi-fi and guitar amps.

The factor that surprised us the most is its affordable price point, which is really unbelievable given its top-of-the-line audio quality.

Many consider it as one of the most beautiful el84 tubes in the industry because it has the ability to produce great tonal quality without causing unnecessary distortion.

Moreover, at a saturated level, it complements your notes with lively and rich harmonics and allows you to reproduce the classic el84 tonal quality. Apart from matched pairs, it is also available in singles and matched quads, thus serving as a better alternative to 6BQ5 tubes.

Say goodbye to frequent failure and poor longevity as this high-quality el84 tube incorporates robust construction with premium electric parts. However, it is only suitable for amps that support el84 format, so you should check the compatibility before investing.

Pros
  • Smooth tonal output with fluidic harmonic.
  • Short burn period.
  • It doesn’t cause unwanted distortion at any volume level.
  • It comes in a wide variety.
  • Affordable price point.
Pros
  • It would cause distortion if not matched.
  • Burns out within a day.

Verdict:

JJ Electronics T-EL84-JJ-MP is a terrific el84 tube that can quench your thirst to churn good tonal quality from your old amp with optimum smoothness.

3. JJ Fender Blues Jr. Apex Matched El84 Tube

JJ/Tesla Fender blues junior is one of a kind el84 tube set that takes the assistance of 12AX7 to produce an excellent tonal for Fender blues junior.

JJ Fender Blues Jr.

Key Features:

  • Two El84 and three 12AX7 tubes.
  • Apex matched.
  • Rugged body distance.
  • Full frequency response.
  • High gain.

Features Overview:

With the unique combination of two T-el84-JJ and three T-12AX7-S-JJ, this good-rated el84 tube set will take your jamming session to a new height.

The smooth tone of el84, when combined with fantastic sound harmonics of T-12AX7-S-JJ, creates a balanced audio output with minimal noise. Even though they are apex matched, the tube doesn’t generate any distortion even at high volume; thus, making it for your high-quality amp.

The solid plate structure in the 12AX7 tube ensures that you don’t get a dampen audio when you use the amp for jamming or rehearsal. A great advantage you will from this one of the most excellent el84 tubes set is that you won’t face microphone issues while recording your guitar solo.

Whatever music genre you want to play, you can stay assured that you will get a rounded tonal quality since it gets robust lows with warm highs and nice mid.

Unlike its competitors, this apex matched tube set will also ensure a clean output with high gain, and this is why amp builders prefer it.

The robust build quality of this tube not only treats you with tremendous reliability but also makes it less prone to failure. The best part is that it comes with an inexpensive price tag, and it can be matched with any quality amp that supports el84 and 12AX7.

Pros
  • Wide frequency response.
  • Reliable build quality.
  • Low distortion.
  • Minimal microphone issue.
Pros
  • It requires an exclusive amp for fittings.

Verdict:

If you are thinking to custom build an amp with el84 apex-matched tube set, we would recommend you to go for JJ/Tesla Fender blues junior that will meet your need.

4. Sovtek EL84 Vacuum Matched Quad Tube

Another top of the line tube in this list of awesome el84 tubes is the Sovtek EL84 vacuum matched quad whose primary is to enhance the sound delivery of your amp.

Sovtek EL84 Vacuum

Key Features:

  • Smooth and warm tone.
  • Decent distortion.
  • Fits in vintage VOX AC-30 amp.
  • 75inch height.
  • 87inch diameter.

Features Overview:

Sovtek EL84 vacuum matched quad is an outcome of modern engineering that not only notches up the hardware quality of your amp but also improves the tonal range. If you own a vintage VOX AC-30s, then it will perfectly complement the hardware configuration of that amp.

With this meticulous combination of tubes, you can expect unparalleled sound quality without the annoying any noise. However, the highlight point in its fluidic audio deliverance is the warm and seamless distortion that doesn’t get affected at any volume level.

Moreover, it doesn’t face the common microphone issue like others; thus, top manufacturers like Fender, Peavey, Crate prefer this combination.

Sovtek EL84 vacuum matched quad has been carefully calibrated, so the change in ratings won’t give you any pointless distortion.

To cater to your different tonal requirements, it also treats you with three break modes at a different level, thus allowing you to use it for playing different genres.

Installing this quad tube in an amp won’t give you a hard time, and it will easily fit in most the circuit boards with its 2.75inch height and 0.87inch diameter. According to users, it comes with a matching process, so you should follow it during the installation process.

The durability of the Sovtek matched quad won’t make your regret your decision because it is made up of thick glass with a low failure rate. They have also gone through shorts, leaks, and gas test that also enhances the reliability of the product.

Pros
  • Excellent tonal quality.
  • Adequate distortion level.
  • Reliable build quality.
  • Low failure rate.
Pros
  • It doesn’t support most amps.
  • It heats up after a few minutes of usage.

Verdict:

Sovtek EL84 vacuum matched quad is ideal for players who have a decent budget range and want smooth tone with adequate distortion out of their amp.

5. Tube Amp Doctor STR Premium Matched Pair El84 Tube

Often regarded as a hidden gem in the amplifier industry, Tube Amp Doctor STR premium is one of the finest el84 matched pair tube set you will find in the market.

Tube Amp Doctor STR

Key Features:

  • Matched el84 tube.
  • Balanced tone.
  • Thick glass envelope.
  • Golden wire construction.
  • Short and leakage proof.

Features Overview:

Based on German engineering, Tube Amp Doctor STR premium el84 matched pair not only enhances the sound of your amp but also maintains a bright and warm tonal quality.

Unwanted distortion is a common issue with matched pair tubes, but the clinical design of this tube allows it to produce an outstanding distortion with abundant harmonics. While recording any music, you won’t get any unnecessary noise in the background, and the credit goes to the low noise performance that maintains clean audio.

With a punchy low-end and bright high, this awesome el84 tube with a balanced tone will immerse you in a beautiful audio experience. Moreover, it complements many modern music genres with its deep crunch on overdrive tone.

The manufacturer has made STR premium matched pair tube go through some rigorous test so that there is no microphone and listening issue. To deliver top-notch audio, this one of the best el84 tubes for hifi passes Sonic test, plate, and amplification test.

Durability is a vital factor of this product because it made using thickest glass and premium circuit that not only enhances longevity but also minimizes failure rate. Most importantly, it is designed with a golden wire that notches up the durability to a new height.

Not only can it handle shocks, but it can maintain its performance without facing shorts and leakages. According to reports, the product has the capability to last for a minimum of six months without getting burnt out.

Pros
  • Extremely durable build quality.
  • Broad frequency response.
  • Dynamic soundstage with proper harmonic.
  • Clean tone with a warm distortion.
Pros
  • It lacks smoothness.
  • The tone at high-end could have been better.

Verdict:

Tube Amp Doctor STR premium matched pair el84 tube is a steal deal that offers clean tonal quality with an impressive robustness.

6. TubeDepot JJ EL84 Pair Vacuum Tube

Many guitarists have the habit of ignoring el84 tubes based on their popularity, but it would be foolish to underestimate TubeDepot JJ EL84 that can outclass many top-notch tubes.

 Pair of JJ EL84/6BQ5

Key Features:

  • Smooth tone.
  • Supports vintage and hi-fi amplifiers.
  • Low failure rate.
  • Available in single, matched pair and matched quads.

Features Overview:

TubeDepot JJ EL84 is a specially designed tube that serves as a perfect replacement for guitar and Hi-Fi amps because it can enhance the sound delivery by a large margin. An exciting fact about this top el84 tube is that it can couple with both modern and vintage amplifiers.

If you have Scott, Fisher amplifier, or any el84 guitar amp, then you can use this tube to replace your stock tube. It is engineered to give you the best of both worlds, which is an outstanding tone and reliable build quality.

With a low failure rate and little chance of leakage, it will leave you flabbergasted with its longevity. Moreover, it gets a quality construction with thick glass coverage that also adds to overall durability.

While record a piece using your amp, you will be delighted with the all-rounded audio it has on offer, and it is mainly due to full frequency response.

The comprehensive frequency response also facilitates you to opt for different genres without compromising on the sound quality.

Unlike others, it maintains a smoothness in the audio delivery without any distortion and noise; thus, you can expect a terrific jamming session with your friends. It is designed to serve the mass, and that is why it comes with an affordable price tag .   

Pros
  • Superb audio quality.
  • The audio remains clean in high volume.
  • An adequate amount of gain.
  • Inexpensive pricing.
  • It can withstand shock.
Pros
  • It burns quickly.

Verdict:

Fed up of the audio quality of your old amp and thinking to upgrade it with a new tube? Then you can check out TubeDepot JJ EL84.

7. JJ Electronics Vox AC30 12AX7 and EL84 Tube Set

From the house well-known el84 tube maker JJ electronics, we present to you JJ  Vox AC30 EL84 tube set that gets you an excellent blend of tone and durability.

JJ Electronics Vox AC30

Key Features:

  • Four el84 power tubes.
  • Three 12AX7 power tubes.
  • Broad frequency response.
  • Apex matched.
  • Smooth tone quality.

Features Overview:

JJ Electronics Vox AC30 tube set features an exciting combo of four el84 and three 12AX7 power tubes, and together they create a beautiful audio output without useless distortion.

The power tubes when installed in VOX AC30 amp, it accurately reproduces the vintage VOX tone with soft and optimum harmonics. The highlighting characteristic of this tube is its ability to cater to a lot of genres by giving out a charming high, clean mid, and tight low-end sound.

Even though the power tubes are apex matched, the chance of any undue noise is quite minimal, so you can happily record your music.

The smoothness and clarity this high-quality el84 tube set maintains in the music are really commendable, which you will hardly get in budget apex matched tubes.

However, when you notch up the sound, it transforms the audio by producing a great yet mean overdriven sound. However, the installation part is tricky, and it doesn’t fit in all types of amps.

Another exciting part of this tube set is that it supports high gain with low micro-phonic and noise issues. From the construction point of view, it will really impress you with its rugged design and thick glass envelope. The smaller amount of failure also plays a significant role in strengthening its construction.

Pros
  • Amazing dynamic response.
  • Clean and sharp tonal quality.
  • It doesn’t distort much in high volume.
  • Short burn period.
  • Rich harmonics.
Pros
  • It is not suitable for all kinds of amps.

Verdict:

JJ Electronics Vox AC30 tube set is an excellent choice for musicians who wants to improve the tonal quality of their vintage VOX AC30 amp without spending large chunk.

8. Mullard Matched Pair El84 Tube

Mullard matched pair el84 tube another prolific addition in this list of most excellent el84 tube list that has become a sensation among Blues players.

Mullard Matched Pair El84 Tube

Key Features:

  • Black plates.
  • Gold plated grid.
  • Carbonized screen.
  • Soft and lucid overdrive.
  • Adequate distortion level.

Features Overview:

Mullard matched pair el84 tube is a well-known tube that has made its way into the amps of many blues and metal enthusiasts. It comes with a height of 2.75inch and a diameter of 0.87inch so fitting it in your vintage Marshall, Bad Cat, or VOX AC30 won’t be a problem.

However, you might have difficulty in installing it in some modern amps because not all support this type of matched pair. Made with premium black plates and carbonized screens, this top-quality el84 would last in your amp for a long time without getting burned out quickly.

Importantly it comes with na gold plated grids that ensure not only optimum durability but also curbs down the chance of any fault.

When it comes to the tonal quality, this Mullard tube set will become the perfect companion if you prefer to blues rather than other genres. Even though it doesn’t have clarity in the headroom but if you play aggressively, you will get an excellent distortion.

When pushed into overdrive, it churns out a smooth and creamy sound delivery that you won’t expect at this price point. It also gets the assistance of broad frequency response so that you won’t have to compromise on sound while playing other genres apart from blues.

Pros
  • Soft tone in overdrive.
  • Optimum distortion without noise.
  • Excellent body construction.
  • Resistant to shock.
  • Low failure rate.
Pros
  • It doesn’t have clarity in tones.

Verdict:

Looking for an excellent el84 tube set that will cater to your aggressive and blues style playing? Well, then you should take a look at Mullard matched pair el84 tube.

Before we bid final goodbye, we like to introduce you to our buying guide and some FAQs that will really come handy during product selection.

What To Look For When Buying EL84 Tube?

Getting an amp might be an easy task, but finding the top el48 tube is not a straightforward task. A lot of factors come into play when you decide to buy an el84 tube. Let’s check those factors;

  • Audio Quality – You should never compromise on the audio quality when you are getting el48. Always check whether the tube facilitates in creating a bluesy output with a smooth sound and adequate harmonic distortion. It should be able to produce good sound at a lower volume and maintain a good mid-range with sparkling high.
  • Tubing Type – Based on your audio requirement, you should choose the model. If you are looking for punchy sound with hard distortion, then opt for a soft rated tube. However, the excellent rounded sound is your main priority then looks for a medium rated tube. A hard rated tube would be a smart choice for the guitarist who is yearning to get that sweet and clean sound delivery from their amp.
  • Durability – Durability of the el48 tube is another primary consideration you shouldn’t ignore. Make sure it has quality construction and won’t die down after a few your playing. Moreover, check the failure rate of the tube because frequent failure will ruin your jamming sessions. Look for user reviews to check out the durability condition of the tube. Quality parts always ensure excellent sturdiness, so thoroughly inspect every part.
  • Budget – Budget is the primary factor that would determine which el48 tube you should go for.  Depending upon your budget, you can either go for a high-end model or budget one. However, if you own a $4000 amp, then you should always go for that will match the hardware quality of your amp. But if you own an ordinary amp, then it would be a naive decision to couple it with an expensive el48 tube. It would be smart to choose the best model in your price range rather than randomly picking a product.

FAQs

What amps use el84 tubes?

Most of the low wattage amplifiers, whether it from a reputed brand or some ordinary manufacturers, make use of el84 tubes. Since they have much lower output compared to other tubes, so it is mostly utilized for small or low wattage amps.

Are Tung Sol tubes good?

Tung sol tubes are an excellent choice for high-quality amps, but they are meant for everyone due to their high price point. These vacuum tubes are considered as one of the best in the markets because it delivers high gain and high fidelity with optimum durability.

What tubes can replace el84?

According to professional guitarists and sound engineers, JJ EL844 tubes serve as the best alternative to el84. 6BQ5 also serves as a reasonable alternative to el84, but there is no match to JJ EL844. Not only it offers excellent breakup but also delivers better durability.

When to replace el84 tubes/ how long do el84 tubes last?

It is difficult to answer how long does an el84 tube lasts because it totally depends upon the usage. If you use it conveniently, then it would last for years, but if you keep the amp running most of the time, then it would have a short lifespan. Moreover, if you frequently switch on and switch off the tube, it also hampers the longevity.

Do el84 tubes need to be matched?

Many experts have suggested that there is no need to match your el84 tubes when you are using it as a replacement tube. Many amps come with different ratings, but the difference in power or harmonic distortion is almost inaudible.

Are all el84 tubes the same?

Technically every el84 is the same, but there is a difference in the audio output based on the model you are choosing. An expensive el84 tube would obviously give better overall sound quality than the ordinary model.

 Conclusion

Upgrading your amp’s old tube with the finest el84 tube is the best thing you can do it to your amplifier. An upgrade will not only enhance the sound quality of your amp but will also bring up a new life for your old amp.

After spending many weeks on research and scrutiny, our experts have created this list of best el84 tubes, and we hope you won’t be disappointed. For easy assessment, we have given a buying guide that will make your buying process much more comfortable.

We have added varied type of product offer varied features so that every reader can find an el84 tube of their choice.