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Re: [TowerTalk] Vacuum tube 100 years old today

To: "" <>
Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Vacuum tube 100 years old today
From: "Jim Brown" <>
Reply-to: Jim Brown <>
Date: Tue, 16 Nov 2004 15:48:23 -0600
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On Tue, 16 Nov 2004 16:32:11 -0500, Gene Smar wrote:

>The article's main
>thesis is that tubes provide "better-sounding" audio at high levels than
>could (or still can) be achieved by solid-state audio processing circuitry.

Modest amounts of second harmonic distortion are perceived as "warmth." 
There are even EFX generators that contain a second harmonic generator, 
and the control for it is called "warmth." When left to their own listening 
judgement, a recording engineer will usually choose a setting on the order of 
a few percent. 

In general, the lower the order of the distortion, the closer it comes to 
with musical harmonic intervals, and the higher the order, the more 
dissonant.  Tubes tend to be higher in low order harmonics and lower in high 
order harmonics. In other words, tubes clip more gracefully than transistors. 

Jim Brown  K9YC


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