Still Current !!! Jazz artists still love the vacumn tube "warm" sound !
by David Balog
(St Petersburg, FL)
My name is David M. Balog . From the years of 1974 to 1986 , I managed a small electronics lab in Largo, Florida , called Mektron. This lab was owned by George A. Davidson, Jr., a survivor of the Cape Canaveral, 1960's boom days. During those times, I, along with a fellow Sr. Electronics Tech, Walter Fulford would repair and fabricate, light industrial services. Getting to the point, however, George had put our late afternoon and late evening hours in the services as a warranty center for most major electronic music manufactures. Moog , A.R.P. , Fender, Gibson, were very popular.
Some recording firms, were our clients, and we became all too familiar with brands like Scully , MCI, Neve, SSL, etc. Ampex however, was a different animal! We always had a high respect for their straight forward design, and, for tube-driven equipment, a some what battle ship ruggedness! Aside from all this we had discovered an easily correctable flaw. In most all of the circuits used in professional analog recording at this time, utilized standard carbon composition resistors, which everyone knows is inherently quite noisy in high gain situations! The answer of course, was to replace them with metal-film units, and better quality electrolytic capacitors for good measure! Former clients still keep in touch with me; One former client, Chet Bennett of C.B.S., claimed he could hear the air currents through his 351 with a condenser mic .