Update on Production of Western Electric Tubes

In this month's issue of Stereophile , Julie Mullins stated in her Re-Tales column that Western Electric is working on tooling for specific parts , but intends on adding 12AX7, 12AT7, 12AU7, 6550 and 6L6 tubes to its lineup. Specific pricing was not mentioned, but she does quote WE President & Owner Charlie Whitener as stating that WE will not be able to meet Russian and Chinese tube prices due to the labor cost differential; and that it will likely be 9 months to a year before they are able to deliver quantity of tubes.

A degree of good news in my humble opinion


Agreed, nice to see domestically produced anything 👍🏼 

Hope they are serious about making ‘audiophile grade’ tubes. A good thing.

Decent choices, even if they are not Vintage WE tube types.  I particularly like the choice of 6L6, but the WE near equivalent- 350B- would be even better.

User reviews of the current WE 300b are very positive. There were reports of a 6SN7 to be manufactured, but maybe that was abandoned since the Chinese are making high quality tubes for audiophiles.

I have gear that can use any of those tubes so that's good news.   I have a NOS pair of spare  50's era RCA 12ax7 and 12au7 to use in my preamp some day .   I would much rather not use down the road , and would definitely outfit it with WE if I could....

Tube novice here….Does anyone know if Western Electric is considering production of the EL 34 or compatible?

Hoping someone at WE is following this. I’d like KT88, 6DJ8, and especially 8417.

Per the article in Stereophile, the owner of WE, Charlie Whitener, said they currently have plans to make 12AT7, 12AU7, 12AX7, 6550 and 6L6 tubes.

They also bought GEC/Gold Lion tooling which would allow them to make KT88, KT150, KT170 and KT190 power tubes but there was no plan to do so at this time. GEC/Gold Lion (not the ones made in Russia) were a premium tube back in the day.

@lg1 The article did not mention that WE had any intention in making the EL34. Guess we'll see down the road what possible other decisions they make

Didn't they have a webpage going where you could submit requests for specific tube types to be made.

@twoleftears - Yes, see below link. It is for gathering information for their planning tube production lineup expansion, however that doesn’t mean all tube types would be produced.


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