Welcome to MyTubeAudio. A truly different kind of repair shop. TRANSPARENT!
[Updated May 2021]
MyTubeAudio, LLC., is a West Michigan-based company that offers “While You Wait” [temporarily video-conference-based] service for tube amplifiers of most any make and most any vintage. While historically “Live” with the owner in attendance, I’m again open and making repairs with a remote link to customers by live video call. Back in 2020 and before the vaccine, there was a 4-month COVID closure, during which a sizable backlog of appointments built up. Everyone was home and looking at broken gear, it seemed. I was flooded with calls. As of May 2021, I’m still behind by 20 or so appointments, but it’s far better than the 40 or 50 it was. This annoys me, as the idea was to be a fast-repair solution, but there are only 2 repair evenings possible per week. It keeps family life in balance.
MyTubeAudio is licensed, insured, legal and experienced – I have been involved with tube amplifiers for over 25 years. I work by appointment only, two evenings per week. If you’re looking for tube amp service in West Michigan, give a call to the number in the picture above and make your appointment now. Typically, MTA sees 60 to 70 appointments completed per year, and occasionally multiple-amp jobs are completed in one night. This is THE BEST way to see what’s been done and learn more about your particular amp.
Considering the deep inventory of parts, a solid collection of test and measurement gear and the experience of hundreds and hundreds of documented amp repairs, you shouldn’t be surprised to discover that most tube amps can be repaired in just an hour or two. Retail music shops often charge 50% or more repair markups to an outside tech, often resulting in a three week wait or more. Why not cut the middleman and head right to the bench with your amp? You’ll see your amp get worked on, you’ll get your questions answered, and you’ll KNOW what’s been done. You’ll know your amp tech, and be able to let him know what’s important to you. This is my philosophy – a fully transparent, open exchange of knowledge and service. I learn from every repair, also. Many of my returning customers are very knowledgeable, skilled musicians, which makes this kind of work really pleasant and rewarding for me as well.
Do you have an issue with dropping your best amp off somewhere not knowing when it will be done? MTA LLC can help you. All work is performed “live” by appointment only – no random drop-off work is accepted at My Tube Audio, LLC. I won’t have your amp for weeks unless you don’t pick it up after it’s repaired.
The business model is ultra-simple and ultra-transparent: $60/hr for bench time plus parts and tax. Warranty is provided – 30 days on parts and 60 days on labor. You watch the repair and you control how expensive it gets.
NO BENCH FEES. NO MINIMUM CHARGES. NO TRADE SECRETS. NO BROKEN PROMISE DATES.
I buy parts wholesale and my markup is a standard 35%, making most items pretty close to typical “street prices”. Yes, you can certainly bring your own parts if you prefer, and I’ll install them happily, but keep in mind I can’t warranty your items back to my suppliers if I did not purchase them…I’ll honor the workmanship only in that case.
Well, it sometimes happens. You have a show in a few days, and bang! The amp is dead or suddenly feels untrustworthy. For folks in that situation, I’ll usually make an exception to my family-oriented 2-night-per-week limit and can take your amp immediately (no scheduling an appointment for later), at twice the usual hourly rate. At $120 per hour, it’s not for everyone, and it’s not meant to be, as the rate implies. But when you are really up against it, you do have options. Where else this that possible?
What? You’d rather have something retro and custom? You’re covered.
My Tube Audio is also an official dealer for Mojo products, who make an impressive line of vintage-inspired classic tube amp kits. I can build to order / custom modify anything you find on their website, so if you’re looking to buy a classic amp but would rather have something in like-new condition without the boutique-amp price, check out http://www.mojomusicalsupply.com/ and let me know what you’d like to do. It’s a good way to get a great amp for less cost than finding/buying/shipping/repairing a vintage unit. I can also assist you with support for your own Mojo amp kit build. Maybe you’ve built it and just want it gone over with a fine-toothed comb before that first power-up. Perhaps you always wanted to try to build an amp but just need some encouragement and a backup plan? I can help. Several customers have ordered kits through me this way and I have to say it’s really fun seeing the pride a player gets when he can say – “yeah, it’s a good amp, and I built it!” But be warned, it can be addictive.
I also offer electric guitar service – just about anything you might need outside of frets and paint. Wiring, mods, pickup changes, setups, intonation and hardware updates. You can even bring in your own purchased “goodies” and let me do the tricky part. What? you bought new tuners but they are a larger diameter? No problem. MTA LLC has a well-equipped wood shop that can help.
Amateur Radio fans, please take note. I have a great deal of radio restoration experience (domestic AND European) and can help you get that vintage transmitter, receiver or transceiver back up and running. I have added whole second work bench full of gear to support radio repair, including test equipment for measuring alignment and sensitivity.
Hi-Fi friends, MTA LLC has you covered, too. Beyond the basic performance checks, I can measure THD and Intermodulation distortion values, and a host of other aspects to make sure your tube HiFi gear is really operating like it should.
As for the site – Well, I don’t get enough free time to be doing a proper job of it, but I add things when I can. Up here on the front page I am going to continue to add more repair and project photos, with small comments here and there. It’s not as good as full pages dedicated to each item, but it’s better than nothing. Enjoy what you see and feel free to contact me via the Email address shown in the photo above.
Thanks for stopping by – Dan, N8ZJV
MyTubeAudio LLC., Holland, Michigan
“Your walking out with confidence knowing and seeing a highly skilled professional servicing your amp with the care you would do. Going the extra mile doing it better than original.”
Would you be interested in working on a 1978 Acoustic 370? The output drops down to around 1/2 volume after playing it a while.
Hi Mike, I thought I answered this as an Email, but I can’t find proof. Redux: As the website declares, I really don’t work on solid state gear. Why? I’m buried in (pleasant) tube work with a significant waiting list. I have a vast inventory of tube amp parts, and comparatively little on-hand for solid-state parts. Being not as familiar with solid state amps, I would take longer to repair that kind of gear than most people would be willing to pay for. so it’s not really economical, and I only have two evenings per week on the bench, per family decree. Add all of that up and solid-state repairs are just not for me.
That said, from an engineering standpoint, what you describe would likely be a leaky cap somewhere that slowly lets something “transistor-y” drift in bias over time/temp. Considering the age, it’s probably due for a total re-cap. Especially so if it ONLY acts as you describe after running for a while. Unless you have very good service docs that show correct voltages around each transistor (op-amp?) you will better to shotgun all of the caps, than just search out the one that is leaky. Any good HiFi repair shop should be able to take this on. That’s the best advice I can offer.
Dan, MyTubeAudio LLC