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Aguilar AGRO as a straight pre?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by buckminster, Feb 19, 2008.


  1. buckminster

    buckminster Banned

    Apr 29, 2006
    Sacramento, CA
    I know the AGRO is designed as an overdrive pre, but I've heard that you can use it bypassed / clean, but that you have no EQ possibilities with the clean setting. I'm not really concerned with that because I usually set my amp flat and tweak my tone with my bass...

    Does anyone use the AGRO as a clean channel pre-amp? I'm interested, because I'm not sure I want to fork over the $600-$1,000+ for a used / NOS DB659 or DB680.
     
  2. I was thinking of doing this, too. I really love the sounds you can get from it.
     
  3. SoLongJake

    SoLongJake Supporting Member

    Jul 1, 2007
    Des Moines, Iowa
    From my experiences with the AGRO its either overdrive or off. using it unaffected, you might as well just run straight into the power amp. At its minimum distortion level, it just sounds like a tube amp breaking up a little bit.
     
  4. buckminster

    buckminster Banned

    Apr 29, 2006
    Sacramento, CA
    I guess I'll just have to go to the dealer and try one out...
     
  5. MODNY

    MODNY Guest

    Nov 9, 2004
    i want one of these baddddd
     
  6. NKUSigEp

    NKUSigEp

    Jun 6, 2006
    Bright, IN
    Here y'all go... :D

    The Agro can definitely be used as a preamp. What happens is you get the saturation (distortion/overdrive) when it's switched on and a buffered but otherwise unaffected signal when off. What that means is it takes your original bass signal and boosts it (I think +10 dB but don't quote me on that) so it's not true bypass, but it's very transparent. There's no EQ-ing or anything when it's off so that might be a con but if you do that from your bass anyway or run it to another preamp, it's very handy.

    If you wanna hear what it sounds like, I re-did all the bass tracks with it for my band - www.myspace.com/thedirtymorningband (Signal = Spector NS4CRFM -> Agro -> DB659 -> ProTools)
     
  7. buckminster

    buckminster Banned

    Apr 29, 2006
    Sacramento, CA
    Thanks for the input. Exactly what I needed to know. Very interesting. :ninja:

    Yes, since I set my amp flat and do my tone tweaking from the pickup settings / selectors on my bass, this might be a low cost solution to my pre-amp/power amp dilemna. I can always get another pre-amp later and use the AGRO as an overdrive unit.

    If I pair it with a Carvin DCM1500, I can have a decent rack set-up for less than $800...:hyper:
     
  8. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    I'd just get an AG500. The AGRO can be a preamp, but sounds nothing like the Aguilar tube offerings. It sounds like a flat AG500 when bypassed.
     
  9. buckminster

    buckminster Banned

    Apr 29, 2006
    Sacramento, CA
    I'm going to be driving a Bag End Q10BX-D, which is rated at 800 watts at 8 ohms. The AG500 is not enough amp to push that cabinet properly and it's out of my price range, as I'm currently unemployed an trying to find a low cost solution to getting back to gigging.
     
  10. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    There are quite a few normal preamps floating around for about the same price as a new AGRO. Really, some tone shaping at the preamp is something I think you're going to want. Unless the AGRO in front of the bag end just happens to sound perfect. You'll also want a DI, which the AGRO does not have.

    Grab a trace V-type (if you can find one) or old SWR grand prix ... both sound great and sell for really cheap on the used market. There are also great old Yamaha preamps floating around ... lots of options.
     
  11. buckminster

    buckminster Banned

    Apr 29, 2006
    Sacramento, CA
    Well I'm probably going to ditch the whole power/pre-amp idea and just get an integrated head. That will be more cash up front, but cheaper in the long run...
     
  12. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Except the AG500 has no tubes in it.
     
  13. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    That's what I was saying. The AGRO and AG500 don't sound like the tube-loaded aggies.
     

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