The 11 Greatest Vacuum Tubes You’ve Never Heard Of

These vacuum devices stood guard during the Cold War, advanced particle physics, treated cancer patients, and made the Beatles sound good

13 min read
From left, Thales; Robert Phillips; RCA

In an age propped up by quintillions of solid-state devices, should you even care about vacuum tubes? You definitely should! For richness, drama, and sheer brilliance, few technological timelines can match the 116-year (and counting) history of the vacuum tube. To prove it, I've assembled a list of vacuum devices that over the past 60 or 70 years inarguably changed the world.

And just for good measure, you'll also find here a few tubes that are too unique, cool, or weird to languish in obscurity.

Keep Reading ↓ Show less