I heard literally everywhere that it is really important to let my amp warming up for some minutes before playing the guitar (or give some audio do the input).

Strange thing is that the recommended time is different everywhere ! I red between 30 sec and half an hour...

I did not find any other physical/electrical reasons than "the tubes have to warm". In my opinion there is a lack of true scientific explanations, it's seems more like a blindly believing. What are the risks if tubes are stimulate directly at startup ? And why these hypothetical risks even exists ?

Lot's of guitarist seems to don't care about it and directly play whithout reporting any issue.

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  • This might be better suited to the music.stackexchange.com site where you will find most tube-amplified guitar-playing stackexchangers. – Mark Feb 15 at 0:22

When the cathode of a tube is not properly warmed up before currents are drawn off it, ions are pulled off it, eventually disintegrating it and depositing metal elsewhere. That is basically the argument for warming up silently. When does the warming up phase end? The highest cathode temperature of course will be reached when the whole enclosure has reached its final operating temperature. But "highest" and "high enough that differences in life time will be unmeasurable" are two different things. Personally, I don't think that more than 30s would make a noticeable difference.


Valves contain heaters as an integral part of the tube design. A the very least, before they will work, you need to ensure that the heater has warmed up and is supplying heat to the cathode. If you don't do this, nothing will work.

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