What to suspect first

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Not all things are equally likely to fail. Experience with tube guitar amps has shown that failures are most often in the following order of likehood:

  1. Operator Error - a control or something is set or switched wrong.
  2. Tubes - the most likely thing to have gone bad on a once-working amp; this is why they're in sockets!
  3. Power Supply Components - they handle lots of power and get hot
  4. Resistors and Capacitors - especially electrolytic capacitors
  5. Mechanical Components
  6. Internal Wiring
Accordingly, suspect problems in that order. First make sure you are operating the amp correctly - master volume turned up, cords plugged in, etc, etc. Then suspect that a tube has failed, and so on.