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Aguilar DB680 vs. DB659???

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by jokerjkny, Apr 21, 2004.

  1. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    hey all,

    for a while now, i've been thinking of letting go of my DB680, cause to be honest, its too much preamp for me. for the crazy tweaker, its a dream, but these days, i just wanna plug and go.

    the only thing i really touch on the aggie pre is the 40Hz bass boost, which IMHO, is eerily similar to the boost on my Sadowsky basses. both of which who's tone i completely dig.

    so, i'm thinking of downsizing to a DB659. how do you guys dig yours? tonally, how do they differ, if any at all?
  2. Peter Lufrano

    Peter Lufrano Blues. and nothing but the Blues.

    Apr 18, 2004
    Berkeley, CA
    I have both. I use the db680 as my main stage rig, and I use the db659 for my rehearsal rig and as a back up. The db659 is a very nice preamp. But it can not compare to the db680.
    I am not talking about the more extensive eq capabilities of the db680 either, because I hardly touch the eq. But the tone is very different. the 680 is a far more "open" sounding unit. The 659 is very good. But it is not as good as the 680. Of course, very few preamps are!
  3. I've spotted several threads on this very topic and the concencus agrees with autofile's post. Downsizing to the DB659 might be a decision you would later regret for the reasons mentioned above.
  4. Most people I know don't use a lot of EQ either. However I think the difference is more than EQ. If you dig the sound you've got now, better not mess with it. If it ain't broke...........yada.....yada....yada.............and........
  5. Mud Flaps

    Mud Flaps

    Feb 3, 2003
    Norton, MA
    I know I'm not contributing much here, but if any of you are unsatisfied with your --->AGUILAR<--- preamps, I'll gladly trade you my Gallien-Krueger 250BL. Lucky adults, someday, I'll have an Aguilar to call my own. Sorry, I needed that.
  6. Chaputa

    Chaputa Bass-Not just fo eatin anymore Supporting Member

    Mar 28, 2003
    Between DC & Balimore

    If you're down in the philly area, I have a 659 if you want to hear it side by side... and, hey, if you wanna trade :)

    I absolutely love my 659...not saying that I think its the best thing out there, but I ran across it used for a VERY good deal...
    ...and I don't do much eq'ing on it either... mainly just the bass boost every now and again....
  7. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    My DB659 underwhelms me. I can't use it without a SABDDI.

    I'm after a Jack Read Bass Purity to replace it.
  8. Fred Labbidie

    Fred Labbidie Guest

    Apr 22, 2004
    I got a porta potty-opps porta bass.
    It's easy to carry-but I want a DB 659 and a Stewart!
    Anybody have that rig? I think it would be portable and pretty nice.
  9. basss


    Aug 27, 2001
    I got rid of my DB659 partly because I wanted a more versitile EQ. In the right room and at the right volume it sounded awesome but sometimes it was difficult to dial out twang without getting muddy. My basses are passive so maybe a bass with an onboard active EQ might help.

    I just played through a 680 at a rehearsal studio last night. It was easy to get the best of the fat warm clear aguilar sound with its parametric EQ.

    I would love a simple plug n play amp that sounds great in every room but I've found that I need some flexibility in an EQ to deal with different room acoustics.
  10. jivetkr


    May 15, 2002
    I have a 659 & have tried the 680. True the 680 does sound thicker, but the 659 is plenty thick. I barely touch the EQ on my 659 & it sounds tight, deep, & very thick.

    Its a great unit. I'm just happy i got mine before the price increase.

    Joker...I sent you a PM...Youre welcome to try mine out. I'm in midtown NYC.
  11. I had the same thoughts a year ago and sold the DB 680 and went with a Demeter for ease of use. I know they are different animals and with different tubes I was able to warm up the Demeter, you know what I mean, but damn do I regret that move. I miss that Aggie for the harmonics etc...

    Don't do it. JMO.

    But if you do want to sell it.............PM me first.
  12. Big String

    Big String Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2000
    Northwest Indiana
    I have a Demeter 201s and bought if over the 659 I tried. I didn't need to put the NOS Telefunken's in it but I did and it sound very very nice. I never tried the 680 but everyone raves.... I mostly use my Walter Woods Ultra. 7.5 lbs two channels plenty of power and eq if you need. I'm not a tweaker and it's easy for even myself to get a great tone with my passive bass. My Sad P/J4 is on the way in a few weeks though. I can't wait to hear it through my rigs.

    Joker, you play a lot and are on the move all over, you should consider a WWU or try one especially with your Sadowsky basses.
  13. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    Even though the DB680 has all the various tweak options, I find I rarely use them as the flat sound with a bit of bass boost is sooooo good.

    I too was underwhelmed with the DB659, just didn't jump out at me like the 680 did. Also, while the low end was fine I found the mids kind of woolly.
  14. Poon


    May 20, 2003
    Los Angeles, CA

    I think the 659 is a little more particular as to what cabs it likes being paired with. Just an observation that i've noticed is that I like the sound of the DB659 with a pair of GS112's opposed to the GS410. The GS410 and my mesa Mpulse seem to make a better pair. Just a thought or observation.
  15. basss


    Aug 27, 2001
    I agree and would add that it seemed to always sound better when I was playing loud. At quiter volumes the limited EQ made it difficult to get a good balance of warmth and clarity.
  16. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    you have NO idea how hard i've been thinking about one. :meh: but i heard its pretty sterile. then again, people say the same about my iAMP800. *shrug* if i could fuse the super light power section of the WW, along with the iAMP's voice and EQ versatility, i'd be in hog-heaven!

    but congrats on the PJ! :hyper:
  17. granchulo82

    granchulo82 Guest

    May 13, 2001
    Severn, MD
    how do the aggie's compare with the sansamp rbi? if anyone's had the opportunity... i have the rbi and the bass di but was looking for a more flexible Eq to help me cut through a little better, i run through a gs212 for now, getting the gs412 eventually
  18. Big String

    Big String Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2000
    Northwest Indiana
    Serile....NOT... you can tweak this thing easy. The bass you're playing really shines through. I wish you were close I would prove it to you. Of course everyone's tastes and interpetation varies...

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