*****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

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*****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby TubeGetter on Sun Apr 24, 2005 4:19 am

There's always been fake Mullards in circulation, but from a lot of different sources there seems to be a recent increase of them coming from a source/seller originating in Japan. They end up in other sellers hands and are now all over Europe, Asia, and now coming to the states. people have been getting them for $25 to $40 in new looking supposed NOS boxes. If the price is too good to be true, it is. The latest rash of fakes are Matsu****a ECC83's, 82's, etc. that are being re-labeled with the old Mullard shield logo and sold as mid-60's Mullards.

The good news is that if you get some, they aren't bad tubes. It's not like you're getting an old Chinese made 12AX7's. The bad news is that the Matsu's look very much like Mullards internally. But there are some differences to easily tell.

1. The fakes will have double stitched tops, and the real ones only have single stitched. Here's a fake example:

Image

2. Take the tube and look at the sides of each plates. On the outer side of each plate there should be a semi-circle hole half way up each plate. A fake will also have one on the inside as well, forming a complete circle. Mullards only have them on the outside portion of the plates. Here's two Matsu****a fakes with them on both sides. You can see this on the left tube:

Image

and also kind of see it on the left tube here:

Image

You can really see it here on the left:

Image

3. Some don't have the Matsu date codes taken off. Some apparently do and have nice fake Blackburn codes that look kind of etched...but they're not.

Image

4. The vertical support rod for the getter is welded on the inside off the halo...where the Mullard is welded on the outside:

Image

5. The original silkscreening comes off really easy and the relabeled fakes don't rub off easily.

6. The getter flashing on Matsu's tend to be a little darker than Mullards, and some are not as full...i.e. they don't cover as much cap area at the top of the tube as a Mullard flashing usually does. Some look close like the tube on the right, but many don't.

Image

There are some other things too, but those are the easiest to look for. Also look for fake boxes. That's a whole other topic!!
Last edited by TubeGetter on Sun Jun 12, 2005 1:33 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: *****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby Pearly Grapes on Sun Apr 24, 2005 4:29 am

Thanks TG! That's like a well-photographed Dummy's Guide, which is just what I need!
:D
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Re: *****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby TubeGetter on Sun Apr 24, 2005 4:47 am

Thanks. I should mention that they're not my photo's nor are they my tubes, but the comments are all mine!! ;)
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Re: *****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby piperbob on Sun Apr 24, 2005 10:45 pm

One good thing from this scam would be the victim got a Matu****a tube and not a Sovtek or Shuagang. The market for fakes is just right for a scammers as the interest in older tubes is increasing. Someone could make a few $$$ with a handy-dandy full color coffe table picture book.
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Re: *****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby johnnysavant on Thu Apr 28, 2005 3:59 pm

Thanx, TubeGetter for your insights. After some empirical testing with several dozen tubes (83s, 82s, and 81s), I have to take issue with a couple things, your expertise not withstanding.

I checked a whole bunch of tubes I know to be real Mullards and found:

1) Generally, the single seam line holds true MOST of time, but not all. I have a few that are cross-hatched BUT, the second seam is much fainter. I also checked my Holland Bugle Boys. They are all cross-hatched exactly like the MIJ Matsus, but I'm sure everyone knows that already.

2) The semi-circle in the plate of ALL my Mullards and Bugle Boys is exactly as you describe. Not one of my tubes deviates from this.

3) Most of my single-support Mullard halos have the outside weld, but a couple have inside welds, yet have single seams and the proper semi-circle in the plates. I also have a couple of with double support getters that are welded on the inside.

From these observations, I conclude that the only reliable indicator is the semi-circle configuration. For all the tubes I checked, this was consistently true 100% of the time. A Mullard (or Bugle Boy) will not have the semi circle on the inside of the plate. Some of the other characteristics may generally be true, but not 100% foolproof. I bring this up in case someone is tempted to trash, sell or trade away a good tube because it doesn't meet ALL of the criteria. Based on my testing, if it meets the semi-circle test, it's the real deal.

But I would like to hear from others who happen to own a whole bunch of Mullards and other Phillips dual triodes.

One more observation. ALL of my Mullards with mid-60s date codes do indeed meet ALL of the criteria to the letter. The deviants are from later runs.
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Re: *****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby TubeGetter on Thu Apr 28, 2005 5:12 pm

There's nothing 100% with tubes, but if you gather a bunch of indicators you're going to usually get it right. There was some material swapping between some Philips plants (and Philips contracted plants) and that may account for the few inconsistencies that are out there.
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Re: *****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby Roodboy on Thu Apr 28, 2005 9:09 pm

Thanks for the info, I'm sure everybody really appreciates the time you put in for such an informative post.
:)
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Re: *****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby moritz on Fri Apr 29, 2005 1:13 am

Thanks TG, that was an awesome article!
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Re: *****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby johnnysavant on Fri Apr 29, 2005 8:54 pm

Right, TG, there could be many reasons for the differences, especially the human variety, such as assemblers not following SOPs to the letter, etc.

I just found an Orange label Amperex Holland in my box that has a single seam like the old ullard Blackburns, but the semi-circles are also on the inside. The real giveaway is the fact that there are no Holland factory etchings anywhere. Definitely a mis-label from Phillips Japan or India, or who knows where. I've probabaly seen more fake Amperex Holland tubes than all others combined.
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Re: *****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby TubeGetter on Fri Apr 29, 2005 10:29 pm

There are apparently a lot of Matsu****a ECC83's floating around with the Amperex orange world logo on them. Most of them should have the double seams on the top though.
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Re: *****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby Crumb on Fri May 13, 2005 9:08 pm

Here's a matsu 12AX7 I just harvested from an old amplifier. Notice the half circle in the plates. But it does have the quad seam. No getter post at all, though.

<img src="http://i6.photobucket.com/albums/y234/crumbfish/matsu1.jpg" alt=" - " />

<img src="http://i6.photobucket.com/albums/y234/crumbfish/matsu2.jpg" alt=" - " />

<img src="http://i6.photobucket.com/albums/y234/crumbfish/matsu3.jpg" alt=" - " />
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Re: *****Fake Mullard Advisery*****

Postby TubeGetter on Sat May 14, 2005 12:33 am

Most Matsu's have the half circle inside the plates, but yours doesn't for some reason. Back then, there was ocassional sharing of resources between plants, so that might have been a small run where they ran out and borrowed plates from Blackburn, Herleen, or one of the other places.
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FAKE MULLARD PHOTOS WANTED

Postby EasyRider on Sat Jun 11, 2005 10:23 pm

I think 24 Bit did a GREAT JOB reporting on fake Mullards. I was unable to see, however, the photos of what these look like. Perhaps a huge favor could be done by posting actual photos in this thread so that FRAUD does force undeserved revenue out of the pockets of the Plexi Palace family. THANKS! Great report 24 Bit. :idea:
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Postby plexi on Sun Jun 12, 2005 1:30 am

test for bold print
Image
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Plates? Are those the metal portions?

Postby EasyRider on Sun Jun 12, 2005 2:07 am

Dummy question here! The "plate" is the vertical metal portions right? Lastly, this semi-circle you speak of is ONLY on the "outside" plate or the one closest to the glass if I am reading this right. Yes? Basically, ALL Mullard pre-tubes will feature a SINGLE seam across the top flashing? Thanks!
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