Anyone Here Ever Purchased A Tube Tester?

Once or twice a day a tube sputters for a brief second in my Audio Research Reference DAC. The Reference DAC is connected directly to my amplifier and it also serves as my preamp. Visually, all of the tubes look fine. Visually, I can’t tell which tube may be bad.

The tubes are:     (4) 6H30, plus (1) 6550C and (1) 6H30 in power supply

Have any of you ever purchased a tube tester to test your tubes? If so, what tube tester are you using?


I frequently blab about everyone who has tube equipment getting an inexpensive tube tester.

I bought this Accurate Model 257 for a friend.


It's results matched the results of my smaller model 157. My Model 157 always matched my big heavy Jackson, so I gave the Jackson to a friend who used to bring his tubes here.

Post removed 

I had one briefly that had three more knobs than the space station cockpit. I sold it to somebody hopefully smarter and more committed than me, which would not have been hard..,

When I started playing with 4 pin DHT and rectifiers I bought a Hickok 800.   It looks like it should be in a museum, it's that nice.  It was serviced not too long ago and have saved me from using a bad tubemore that once.  It paid for itself by not allowing tubes to damage my gear.   

I use a cheap vintage tester, Superior TD65 purchased on eBay and it gives me what I need to know and works fine. I highly suggest anyone with tube gear get one. It doesn’t have to be a very expensive one, but one that will tell you if a tube is bad, weak, or not.