Amplitudes: The Mesa Boogie Blog
Mesa® Amplifier Tube Troubleshooting Video
Vacuum tube troubleshooting is both an art and a science and occasionally a necessity. It is also one of the best things tube amplifier operators and fans can familiarize themselves to with optimally maintain and even fix your Mesa amplifier when a tube decides it's time to fail. It's also entirely safe and not at all difficult so if you have little to no experience with the process, there's no need to worry.
To coin a potentially overused phrase, changing a tube in an amplifier is as easy as changing a light bulb. You don't call an electrician when a light bulb goes out in your house and Mesa amplifiers have been designed specifically so ANYONE can change tubes in their amplifier without a need for biasing, high voltage exposure and electronic testing equipment or procedures. Changing any tube in any Mesa is as easy as... just changing the tube.
However, (you knew that was coming, didn't you) there are some things you'll want to know to maximize the lifespan of the tubes you use and ultimately, to provide yourself with the best possible defense against a tube choosing the worst possible time to fail (during your solo on that big gig or showcase). And if you don't know a lot about tubes and feeling a little intimidated about the process, this is a great place to start.
Maybe the fuse on your amp blew recently and you're not sure what's next... Or maybe you want to know what different tubes in your amp will sound like. Whatever you know or don't know about tubes and troubleshooting, this video provides the basics of troubleshooting and encourages being able to remain calm in the face of a tube failure. Watch and enjoy and if you have further questions, don't hesitate to call Mesa Customer Service for more detailed instructions on troubleshooting, maintenance or general questions.
Tube photo by Fabien Olivier