Re: Tubes or transistors?
Tube amps as of today sound better for guitars. The sound is warmer and more pleasant to the ear. This is scientifically true actually. The sound waves comming froma tube amp are rounded like this ~~~~~~ but the sound waves coming from a solid-state amp are like this^^^^^^ the first is more pleasing to you ear. Essentially all natural sounds are shaped like this. It's true I read about it somewhere but don't remeber where, I think in a Mesa Boogie info pack.
Also, tube amps have better volume for wattage in most cases. Often times 50 watts tube is louder than almost any 100 watt solid-state. They can actually have more verstility in gain as well. Im not sure how to explain this but, on a tube amp the controls are usually more responsive and can be used to delevop a more original or versatile tone.
One thing solid states have over tube amps is headroom. A solid state amp can stay cleaner, at very very high volumes, than a tube amp. Tube amps get hotter at high volumes so you lose a bit of ability to have the cleanest tone at high volumes. But since most of us use distortion more than clean it isn't a problem and modern tube amps are designed with more headroom and usablilty so even at super loud volumes the clean channel on a good tube amp will stay as clean as anyone needs one to for rock and so on. Jazz clean at those volumes? Probably not.
hope this helps a bit.
I myself don't have to have a tube amp for clean but for distortion it has to go through tubes. Tube pedal or or amp all the way.