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Standby Switch

A switch found in a tube amp (typically a guitar or bass amp) that disconnects high voltage from the tube. There are two reasons for this: the first is to power up the amplifier with the standby switch off, allowing the tube to warm up before high voltages are applied. This is said to extend tube life and to prevent cathode stripping (opinions vary on whether cathode stripping is really a problem at the voltages present in most instrument amps).

The second function of a standby switch is to allow the amp to be muted during breaks or during instrument changes.

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