Sound of tube amplifiers ("Linda A. Seltzer" )

Subject: Sound of tube amplifiers
From:    "Linda A. Seltzer"  <lseltzer(at)PHOENIX.PRINCETON.EDU>
Date:    Tue, 7 Jul 1998 14:46:42 -0400

Recently I found myself in an "argument" with someone because I expressed the view that I still prefer the sound of old tube amplifiers. The opposing view is that someone did a study years ago on tube amplifiers vs. transistor amplifiers and found that the transfer functions could be designed such that the two would be indistinguishable by audiophiles. I wonder if anyone can suggest literature citations on this topic - have any experiments or any expert ear opinions been published on this subject? I remember tube amplifiers as having a "warmer" sound quality. Thank you for any information/opinions. Linda Seltzer lseltzer(at) McGill is running a new version of LISTSERV (1.8c on Windows NT). Information is available on the WEB at

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Electrical Engineering Dept., Columbia University