Last month we had the 12J5, let's continue the 12V heater theme with the 12SF5.
Like the 12J5 being a 12V heater variant otherwise identical to the 6J5, the 12SF5 shares all electrical parameters with the 6SF5 except for the heater voltage and current.
6SF5 tube of the month post or look up the General Electric data sheet. The 6SF5 seems to have gained some popularity since more and more people realised that it is a great Octal base alternative to the ubiquitous 12AX7. It offers a tad more gain as one half of a 6SL7. 12V heater variants of popular tubes are still largely ignored, so this is another sleeper tube which can be found cheaply. No disadvantages in terms of sound or linearity are to be expected from the 12V heater. Here a set of plate curves taken from an actual tube:
Like the 6SF5 it was made with metal as well as glass envelopes, the latter dubbed 12SF5GT. My collection mainly consists of the glass variant. Let's start with 12SF5GT made by National Union:
Three different box styles.
The tube in the cardboard insert:
The unused pins are omitted from the base:
Tubes testable in box without breaking the seal:
This one has a metal shell around the base.
RCA Victor in 'Nipper box':
Different style Tung-Sol:
JAN (Joint Army Navy) military tubes made by Tung-Sol:
These are from a large batch I bought years ago:
Sylvania 12SF5 :
4 different boxes and 4 different construction styles.
A variant with metal base:
The oldest Sylvania 12SFGT:
With leaf logo on the base:
Metal envelope 12SF5 by Sylvania:
Canadian General Electric:
The tubes in these boxes were made by Tung-Sol:
Another example of the rebranding and cross branding which was very common.
A Hytron with metal clamp on the base:
And lastly a Dumont 12SF5GT:
I found this tube with loose metal base:
A good candidate to slaughter.
The metal base is just a ring clamped around the tube. A small metal strip connects it to pin 1:
Bottom of the tube, note the extra insulation on the pate wire:
Pulling out the heater wire:
Grid and cathode:
That's all for the 12SF5. I hope you enjoyed this months tube presentation.