Border Patrol DAC tube change

I replace the EZ80 tube in my Border Patrol DAC SE USB+SPDIF with an EZ80 GE made in Great Britain.  The tube was made for GE by Mullard.  The improvements were significant.  The DAC now sounds more dynamic and the high frequencies improved.  My wife says its more lively.
I just received an email from Gary Dews (Border Patrol) saying that new tubes can calm down with use.  I will monitor the tube sound.
I had planned on doing the same thing but with a Mullard Square Getter which is known to be more punchy but no need for one now.

After 48 hours on tube, there has been little or no change in the dynamic, lively, and denser sound.

The EZ80 GE/Mullard tube used has a D getter.

From my experience with similar tubes, 50-70 hrs is when they come into their own but that's awesome to hear that a great Dac just went up another notch (es).


Old thread but,,,

Put Mullard BVA EZ81(Holland made) instead of stock Tungsram EZ80 - big improvement in tone and dynamics. EZ81 can always be used instead of EZ80 - the only difference EZ81 can handle higher plate voltage... Border DAC is stroke of genius.

Bonjour Mmhifi,

Just to know : Could you tell me if the stock ez80 tube was very old? Just wondering if age could be a factor.

PS Before owning the BP, I did not understand why some are saying that tone is more important than details / the last bit of resolution. Now I understand…


I had brand new Border DAC - one month only in my system. So stock Tungsram EZ80 was fresh. DAC finished break in and after that I changed the tube. Difference for better was big.