Preferred Series KT88

22 Reviews

Availability: Usually ships within 24 hours.

USD $‎79.95
1 – 4USD $‎79.95
5 – 99USD $‎75.95
Our Preferred Series KT88 tube is a versatile high quality tube. It is very musical and with a frequency range balanced from top to bottom. It has a strong detailed bass and smooth highs, with the mids slightly warm yet still detailed. The soundstage is wide and deep. The Preferred Series KT88 construction features a solid plate design and triple getters.

We have been working at sourcing a good quality KT88 tube for the past couple years. This KT88 has excellent quality and for the price is one of the best KT88 in production today. They are custom made for us in China by the Shuguang factory. Our years of experience in testing, rating and listening, combined with customer feedback and knowledge were used to give you the best tube value we can provide. These are tubes that consistently provide us with positive customer feedback.

This tube is also sold as or known as Penta KT88SC or KT88-SC tube.

The Preferred Series KT88 tubes carry a 6 month extended warranty.

Wholesale pricing: Is available on 25 pairs or more. Contact us for pricing.

Other Preferred Series tubes          KT88 Tube Types

Additional Information and Downloads

Tube Matching Information:
Power Tube Matching FAQ
Perfect Pair System

Warranty Information and Return Policy

Warranty Period: 6 months

Preferred Series tubes have a 6 month warranty from date of purchase. (Any exceptions will be noted on that tube's Warranty tab)

If you receive a tube that does not perform to the manufacturer's specifications, please do the following:

- contact us to get a return authorization
- return it via regular mail within 180 days from when we shipped it, and we will provide an exchange or refund of the full purchase price of the tube.

Returns not related to warranty or defect will be considered at our discretion, and are subject to a 15% restocking fee.

We can not accept returns that don't have an authorization, are past 6 months, or are returned improperly.

These guidelines may be updated without notice.

MC 275 & B&W Matrix 803


Replaced the original tubes in my Mcintosh 275 with these tubes 6 months ago. The result was good but not as good as I expected them to be. I’m using them together with the B&W 803 Matrix and so far I’m lacking some sparkle in the top. Have tested and now ordered The Shuguang KT88-98 hat where a better match for my setup. If you are troubled with too much sparkle or too bright sound these will possible help.

My Review


My McIntosh MC-275 arrived with standard, Russian-made KT-88 tubes. Even with these tubes, it is a great amp that does a wonderful job when hooked up to my living voice speakers. But you know how these things go... OF COURSE I felt like I tube rolling would do me a lot of good. Although I could hear improvement when Mullard 12AT7s were put it, I felt that I should learn more about the effects of changing the output tubes.

First, I bought a quad of Genalex/Gold Lion Kt88 tubes. Overall, these sounded similar, although somehow better, to the McIntosh supplied I had. They were quitter, with better extension at the high frequency. It sounded good, but felt like more of the same thing.

The Tube Store's Preferred Series KT88 is a Chinese-made new production series that I previously knew nothing of. So…why not? I installed them, and waited for more than 200 hours before critically, sometimes swapping them with the Golden Lions. The result: the Preferred Series sounds much more refined, with much better extension at the high frequencies, but also tighter bottom end. Mid frequencies were similar, but the overall change felt like someone turned on the light on each and every performance. Everything tended to sound faster and livelier. Classical music, in particular, sounded more organic and engaging.

Following this initial test, I tried on occasion to swap back to either the original KT-88s or the Genalex/Gold Lion Kt88. In all cases, I ended up almost immediately going back to the preferred series tubes.

Excellent Sound


I can not afford more expensive KT88 and I try this. Very excellent in my amplifier. Much better than others.

Tone, texture and drive


I've been running these in my Inspire single ended amplifier by Dennis Had (formerly Cary audio). These tubes take the amp to a whole different place than with the sweet and smooth 6v6's. My jaw literally hit the floor when I spun up the Brothers album in by the Black Keys. I'd never heard tone and texture like that through my Zu audio speakers before.

Such a perfect output tube....


This one does it all. Top to bottom, is perfectly linear and this tube has unmatched transparency vs. any other KT88 I have tried. They are also extremely reliable!