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Aguilar DB680 users: Which power amp now?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Admiral Akbar, Jul 31, 2018.

  1. Judge Nickels

    Judge Nickels

    Aug 3, 2015
    I have an SWR Stereo 800 powering my DB 680 based rack. It is totally killer. I honestly think you'll be fine with any quality power amp. If I were you, I'd keep using your Bergantino as a power section and put the 680 in a small rack. Then you can bring the pre or leave it home depending on the gig and sound good no matter what.

    I recently acquired a Noble which I'm running into the power section of a TecAmp Puma. It sounds 92% as good as my big rack and is a million times more convenient.
    TheBear, coves and Admiral Akbar like this.
  2. andrew


    May 20, 2000
    Vancouver BC/Pacific Northwest
    Endorsing Artist: Aguilar Amplification, Spector, Regenerate Guitar Works, Tech 21 NYC
    Are RAD Engineering doing a rackmount power amp with the ICE module?
    Admiral Akbar likes this.
  3. pbassnut

    pbassnut Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2004
    Falls Church, VA
    While I don't have an Aguilar DB680 preamp, I do have its "little brother" - a DB659 preamp which, according to lore I've read on the 'net, has some of the same sonic characteristics. I used to pair it with an SWR Stereo 800 power amp and the combination was simply stellar, IMHO. While the Stereo 800 isn't super lightweight like your typical class D amps, they're only 22 pounds, which ain't bad for an old school type a/b "lead sled" power amp. I only ditched mine because it was a quantum leap more powerful than I could ever use on the types of gigs I play. It was really a great sounding and versatile unit.
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2018
    TheBear and Admiral Akbar like this.
  4. D.A.R.K.

    D.A.R.K. Supporting Member

    Aug 20, 2003
    I've always been a lead sled guy but my last power amp was a Crest pro-lite 3.0 (non DSP).
    It weighed less than the Alembic preamp and rack it went in, and sounded glorious.
    Admiral Akbar likes this.
  5. Admiral Akbar

    Admiral Akbar

    Mar 12, 2013
    New York
    I’m leaning towards what Judge is saying - using the Bergie B Amp’s Power section for the Aguilar. It fits the lightweight/modular concept of whilst still using the tube pre-amp perfectly.
  6. Ewo

    Ewo a/k/a Steve Cooper Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2008
    Huntington WV
    Might be worth considering a Quilter Bass Block 800, as the power amp. I've run a Noble pre into the BB800, and it sounded great.
    Zbysek, Admiral Akbar and andrew like this.
  7. Dee-man

    Dee-man Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2004
    SF Bay Area
    I don't know if Rad engineering does a rack mount.
    Admiral Akbar likes this.
  8. Kevan Campbell

    Kevan Campbell Bergantino Artist, Vibe9 IEM Artist Supporting Member

    Jun 15, 2008
    Austin, TX
    I’ve got the DB659/728 setup, and honestly they do sound glorious together; I could only imagine how great a DB680 would sound with my DB728!

    That said, the DB728 is a bit of a pain to deal with when it comes to transport. It’s longer then will fit into most production racks and due to it’s weight requires extra support than the four rack screws can give it (I’ve got mine mounted on wood inside a shock mount rack). Its also somewhat expensive to retube (worse for me because I can’t seem to find a decent tube amp tech in Austin!), but the sound does indeed make up for all of these issues.

    If I were regularly gigging my rackmount DB659, I’d probably end up getting a smaller and less expensive power amp to rack together with it and then just add in the 728 for special shows where weight wasn’t a concern. I’ll bet that your DB680 would sound great through a Crown power amp or any decent Class D head...shoot, maybe the power section of an Ampeg SVT!
    Admiral Akbar likes this.
  9. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    The CA9 isn’t a flat responding amp, it has extra beefy lows. So all good flat PA amps sound “wimpy” by comparison. The 750/751 power section also has “a sound” - not just flat power.
    Admiral Akbar and andrew like this.
  10. Pickebass

    Pickebass Supporting Member

    Jul 12, 2004
    San Antonio, TX
    I had a 680/728 combo. Great pieces... sold the 728. Just wasn’t practical in real world use. I have a Stewart 2.1 and I’ve been happy and my back thanks me!
    Admiral Akbar likes this.
  11. jsbarber


    Jun 7, 2005
    San Diego
    As you no doubt know the Aguilar companion power amp (db728) is no longer in production. Occasionally one pops up on TB used. The Demeter VTHF-300M is still available new, if you want to stick with tubes. The best sounding solid state power amp I’ve heard is the Glockenklang Bugatti, which is a true audiophile bass power amp (there is actually an audiophile variant of it marketed through high end audio shops). This amp is rated at 2X400 watts, at 0.1% THD - i.e. very conservatively rated. In the lightweight SS arena you might try the Demter HB-1600D, which is a 2X800watts power amp in a 1RU form factor. I’ve not heard it but have always been curious about it. The B|Amp option would no doubt be a solid choice. The Glockenklang crushes, regardless of what the numbers say.
    Admiral Akbar likes this.
  12. The Funk

    The Funk

    Jul 7, 2006
    London, UK
    Congratulations on the DB680! I run mine through an Eden WT1000 power amp. Sounds good to my ears!

    Would love to get a DB728 but if there are any around over here in the UK, their owners are not letting go of them!
    Admiral Akbar likes this.
  13. Cheers,

    I am running my DB680 with two of the Wayne Jones Audio 2X10 Powered Cabinets. These have the top of the line Pascal Class D poweramps bridged @ 1000 watts in each cabinet. This is run dual mono as the Aguilar has two 1/4" outputs.

    I am very happy with the tone, volume available and the light weight relative to having a powered 2X10+H on casters with a retractable handle. (I've heard plenty of complaining about the handles and rolling it being "difficult", but I seem to have no issues and can get both in and out of my backseat by myself.)

    This is a MONSTER rig option that works!
  14. D REESE


    Feb 2, 2019
    Queens New York
    Can i use the Agular DB 680 without the power amp if i am using this in a home recording situation ?
    I would imagine that the output of the db 680 would connect to my audio interface ?
  15. The DB680 is just a preamp, no power amp to it. You'll be right where ya want to be!
  16. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    May 15, 2021

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