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How Vintage Electronics Work

2011 March 28
by Jason Isadore

I’ve posted a couple of times on how vacuum tubes work.  I find it to be an endlessly fascinating subject. I’ve reached back into the archives to republish some old video clips I found on YouTube.


My vintage tweed Fender Champ is powered by three vacuum tubes – a 6v6GT, a 12AX7 and a 5y3GT.  Since vacuum tubes aren’t an everyday occurrence these days, have you ever wonder how a vacuum tube actually works? They are the heart and soul of a vintage guitar amp.  There is just something so compelling about technology that you can actually see and feel working (glowing, getting hot).

I found these old video clips from the 1940s.  They are from “Electronics at Work,” a film made in 1943 by Westinghouse.  I love watching old educational video clips (because they make me feel slightly superior) and they do a better job explaining what is going on inside a vacuum tube than I could ever hope to do on my own.  This is the first part in a three part series.  Hope you like it as much as I do.

Part 1

YouTube Preview Image


Parts 2 and 3 coming soon (again).  If you can’t wait, check out the Related Posts below.

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