Sounds great. I hope it works out for the guy. It will be interesting to hear how they sound and see what they cost.

Sign me up. I'll start w/ 2 please. Did you vote on the poll they conducted a while back? 12ax7 was definitely one of the most popular choices  IIRC

I wish they would make a 6922 and 274b.    The 274b is actually a WE design so that would be too good to be true 

6SN7 were supposed to be released  last September or October. Put on hold indefinitely for some reason. I was really looking forward to a pair.

I just bought some Telefunken smooth plates for $260 a pair.  He’ll have to beat those numbers and sound quality.  At least until the NOS tubes totally dry up.

There was a link posted elsewhere that said they bought the actual Mullard Blackburn tooling for the 12AX7, so if accurate they should be identical to those. NOS tubes. I’ll post the link if I can find it again. 

Love to hear what these tubes sound like. @shawn3997 wow, you bought at the height end of the market on those!

We need Russian mil-spec 6H30DR. The most popular driver tube of the last 20 years? The NOS, from the 80s - 90s, are night-and-day better than other brands/designs.

Thanks for posting!  I saw the same article last night and read it with great interest.

Lets all hope his new business works out and is successful!

@dinov  I bought them from Brent Jesse.  Do you know of a better deal on those tubes?

Looks like trip to Russia will save you a lot on vacuum tubes!

Good luck with the return trip.

I will gladly pay a premium (within reason) for a modern American made kick a*s 12AX7.  Hope this pans out.

W/E also said they were going to make 6SN7 tubes too, in fact a Candaian dealer and some customers have samples.  

Didn’t the Wired piece say "Blackburn"? That’s Mullard territory. Somewhere on the web is a very long set of pieces about Mullard back in the day. It is fascinating and almost steampunk like the movie "Brazil." Rube Goldberg stuff that was mechanized but not computerized. Well worth watching for the fun of it.

If they took Mullard tube making equipment, and plan on making that tube with more modern techniques and materials, my bet is that it is still warm. That isn’t to say it isn’t worth buying. I only use one pair of 12AX7 ( the old ARC SP 3 was filled with them) and prefer a ribbed plate Tele, old, it gives a degree of "roughness" to what would otherwise be too sweet. Have I rolled every tube? Nope. And I have a particular application of specific gear that is voiced as a system. Results may vary.  But the 12aX7 (WE never used to make one, right?) is a ubiquitous tube, common in great older audio circuits and finding true NiB/NoS is a luxe good now.

The 6h30 is a maddening tube. I’m running a late 70s quad matched set that was never used until installed a couple years ago. Replacements of the DR Refl. tube from early production range from counterfeit to impossibly expensive. Very frustrating tube to own. (Some people claim that listening to modern reproductions out of Russia make no difference- maybe it is the circuit. It’s pretty obvious- dead v. air, dynamics and punch.

I wish them the best-

Tubes are just another layer of PITA that makes this sick hobby fun. I’ve been doing tubes for almost 50 years and consider myself a babe in the woods. It’s deep, dark and dangerous.

12AX7 is a good choice for WE to introduce. It's widely used and the remaining NOS selection are priced way too high.

I do find it curious that WE was Beta-testing a 6SN7 to a select few audiophiles and the reviews were so positive. Very surprising this tube was not included in their list of tubes to be released.

Well, if WE ever manufactured a 12AX7, or variant, then I must have missed it. Blackburn refers to Mullard, not WE, so not sure what Charles W. is talking about here, apart from marketing.

I run a red-tip Mullard 12AX7 f91 .c 1958 in my pre, and an original matched pair of Genalex B749s (12AU7 drop ins) as inputs in my SET amp.

Given the situation with Russia and China it is a good thing USA will provide some supply.

Other than JJ in Slovakia are there any others outside of Russia or China?

I have a pair of WE 300b and I have to say they sound phenomenal.   I was afraid the “recipe “ may change or some other unforeseen problem regarding availability might occur so I bought a second pair.    Crazy? maybe…..

As of now only my headphone amp uses 12ax7.    I would buy a pair I they were reasonably priced.    If they really want to sell volume to the guitar community they have to be $80 -$100 ….  Or less.  

I have a few friends that play and I have retubed their amps and they thought $30 each was pushing it.   JJ tubes at $20 - $ 35 depending on type are reasonable in my opinion and some sound great, like the gold pin 12ax7 and the ecc803s .   Great sounding tubes.    That’s what came stock in my Zesto Leto pre and that thing sounded amazing 



I think the big market for 12AX7 is guitar amplifiers. A lot more of them than audiophiles. I'm think this influenced WE's business plan.

I wonder how many high-end NOS 12AX7 tubes are still out there.  When those dry up these guys will have the market cornered if they can produce a quality replica.