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Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Rodan, Feb 13, 2002.
How does it compare to Eden? SWR?
Aguilars are best described as "smooth", "warm", and "punchy".
Just kidding, I've never played or heard an Aguilar amp. However, everyone else will probably say something like that.
I did a 4x10 shootout a few months ago: Eden, Aguilar, SWR, Ampeg, Bag End, Genz Benz. I thought the Aguilar threw the most low end.
...which is why I'm trading my two Eden D-210Ts for a GS-410 on Saturday.
The Aguilar amps have incredible warmth to them without the often inappropriate grit of Ampeg or Mesa/Boogie. The cabinets are best described as "Eden, but better."
I'm sorry, I should have specified. While I am curious about both the sound of the amps and the cabinets, I am more interested in finding out tonal or perceived sound differences in Aguilar AMPS vs. other well known brands, such as Eden and SWR.
I you have info on both, it would be very welcome. Basically my point of reference are SWRs I have an SWR head and cabinets right now and have been playing SWR for a few years now. I'm considering Eden and Aguilar amps at the moment. That being said, I also keep wondering if I should keep my SWR head and just switch out the cabs for a better sound (I know, "better sounding" is so subjective).
Basically I'm looking for a flexible bass amp rig that has the best tone for rock, jazz and that I can also use to play very bottom heavy dub. I feel like I can do that ok with the SWR, but I keep wondering if I'm missing out because of all the praise I hear about other amp manufacturers such as Eden and Aguilar, among others.
The AMPS themselves, I'm not so sure about. But the aguilar SPEAKERS, I'd say are closer to an ampeg sound than SWR.
What kind of SWR cabs do you have, and have you tried other SWR cabs that you could change to or add to your current system?
Before you get rid of your SWR rig, install an SWR 7025 tube in the preamp stage. I'm assuming you have one of the Pro series SWR amps with the tube preamp. The RCA will give the amp a much warmer and fatter tone and change the highs from "brittle and harsh" to smooth. The amp will gain a lot of clarity and focus.
I have tried the Aguilar amps and cabinets and compared them to my rig which is Demeter preamp>Stewart World 1.6>Eden 410XLT or a 210XLT for smaller gigs. The Aguilar cabs sound very good but I still prefer the sound of the Eden XLT cabinets. The 210 Eden cabinet is much more punchy than the 210 Aguilar, however, the Aguilar cabinet sounds better than the Eden for upright bass because it is a more hi fi cab than the Eden which has acentuated lower mids. I use an Eden 210MBX for upright.
IMO the cabs sound very good but not an improvement over the Eden cabs, just different. I did not hear more lows out of the Aguilar. I have yet to hear another 410 that has more lows than the Eden 410XLT.
The Aguilar preamps and heads sound very good indeed. They sound similar the the Demeter preamp that I use but have more EQ range. The Demeter and Aguilar have better clarity than any other amp/preamp that I've tried (have not tried the Kern). The entire tonal range is very clear and detailed and the highs are never harsh sounding. The highs are very sweet and pleasing and the lows are warm. The Demeter and the Aguilar have much more dynamic range than most other amps. They are both very responsive to small changes in playing technique.
Please do yourself a favor and try the RCA 7025 in your SWR before you buy something new. Even if you buy a NOS tube, the cost should be $50 or less and the improvement in tone will be worth much more than that.
I checked out both for a good while (ag and eden).IMO first off they are both great amps. The fist thing I thought of when I heard the aggie was WOW this sounds like an SVT on steroids. The aggie is thick and full with that fat warmth and vibrant rich tone that I love. In all everything you would expect in an amp with that price tag. The eden TO me sounded great, less "old school" than the aggie not better or worsr just different. The eden to did not sound as "big" as the aggie but its a very upfront sound and the tube fatness is very present. Both are very different than an swr. I would say it like this, aggie = more old school tone , swr= hi fi tone , eden is very much in the middle of the the other 2. I did find that IMO both amps sounded better with their own brand of cabs but that is just me.
I can't speak as to the Aguilar amps, but I recently bought an Aguilar 4x10 cab, after spending mucho time with the Eden 410XLT and XST. Needless to say, I bought the Aggie. The XLT's low mid "honk" wasn't really apparent until I A-B'ed it with the XST. Once I had made the direct comparison, I couldn't ingore the honk, whereas before I could swear that I didn't notice it at all.
The XST is a much nicer sounding cab, though not quite as loud. The Aguilar sounded very similar to the XLT, just without that accentuated low-mid thing going on. Its low end is punchy as all get out, yet still sufficiently hi-fi and smooth, very tight, great lows.
I've heard that BassPlayer mag just gave the Aguilar top score on a comparison of 1x12 cabs, you might want to check that out.
The accentuated lower mids on the Eden cabinets are part of my tone. The Demeter preamp/Stewart power amp sounds great with Eden cabs and, perhaps, the Demeter is lacking some lower mids and the Eden cabs compensate for it. In any case, trust your own ears. My tone thrills me but you may hate it.
All opinions about tone should be taken with a large dose of YMMV!!
I've just recently purchased a mostly Aguilar rig (Aguilar DB 659, QSC RMX 1450, Aguilar GS 410).
I got it for some of the reasons that ThunderStik mentioned. I was actually planning on getting an Ampeg SVT rig. I tried the Aguilar stuff out of curiosity. I had heard of Aguilar, and knew it was good stuff, but figured it was mainly a "jazz/fusion player's amp" due to it's reputation of being a boutique amp. However, to my surprise, the Aguilar rig had a bigger version of the sound I was looking for in the Ampeg SVT, in a package roughly half the size and WEIGHT.
The main reason why I think it sounds bigger than the SVT, is because the sound is just more full range. The Aggie has the same killer, growly mids, but couples it with distinct yet polite highs, and some tight but not too high fi lows, with just enough blossum to keep it sounding earthy.
It's a groovy rig man.
I own two SWR amps (Baby Blue and Grand Prix) and have used the Aguilar preamp (borrowed from a friend who happens to be an Aguilar clinician) coupled to a Crown power amp on a gig.
The #1 thing I noticed was the EQ. It's just "musical". What if I told you that you could fatten up your G string by cranking the bass EQ...I can't think of any other amps where that is the case! The midrange brought out body in the instrument, not just fret clank and nasal honk. The EQ is just voiced super well, you can dial in thick, round tones without sacrificing any clarity.
You probably can't use that same EQ to dial in Fieldy style scooped mids the way you can with the SWR EQ. Depending on your need for extreme EQ curves, this could be good or bad.
Thanks for the info. Very informative so far.
Where can I get one of these RCA 7025 tubes? (BTW, I'm living in Austin right now - lots of Texans on this board!)
I need to find a place where I can try out this aguilar gear. OTOH, I also need to sit down and really give the Edens a try - the SWR gear is great, but I have to agree with some that describe it as "sterile". It doesn't sound like that to me all the time, but in certain rooms it lacks a little "soul" that EQ's can't easily fix. Before I do any of these, I'm going to give the new tube idea a try. $50 is not a bad price to pay for some tone improvement!
I agree that the stock SWR tubes aren't all that great. I'm replacing the three tubes in my Interstellar Overdrive with the JJ/tesla's, and I'll see what happens there. In any case, $50 for a pre-amp tube seems a little steep to me, especially for a bass amp. An audiophile system is a different story, I imagine, but this is just a bass amp.
Them's fightin' words!
I used to have a Baby Blue 2 combo, and I tried several pre-amp tubes out in it, including Mullard, RCA, Sylvania, and Telefunken. However, I put a Sovtek 12AX7WB(not WA!), and for around $10 made some serious improvement! They are a really flat sounding tube, and tend to round out the tone. Mind you, the other tubes I listed sounded great, but the cost is too great!
About Aguilar...I have just bought a new Aguilar DB359 head, with a(soon to come(maybe tomorrow!))GS210, and I have never heard an amp this good. It is everything these guys have been saying. Fat smooth tone with an unbelievably sweet hi-end. It is incredibly versatile too. I don't think I have found an "un-usable" setting in the EQ!
The head sounds pretty much the same as the 2 pre-amps, but with a built in 200 watt power section(all tube too!). Very well built, with excellent sound. The epitome of bass amplification! Sorry! I get carried away!
I have played an aggie db359 and I think it sounds very similar to Eden heads. Its a bit quiet for my tastes so I passed on it.
BUT I have played the preamp659?/poweramp set up and that sounded sooooooo damn good. It was way to expensive but the tone was just warm, alive, punchy, and very clear. Awesome tone and it does blow my eden away (not by much). I played it through a GS410 and a Pentabuzz.
I'd say look into that set up for the "ultimate" tone.
DB750? no idea, no one has one yet.
I actually will have the privelige or playing one tommorow or so the place informs me. After trying it out, i will give you all the scoop.
Hmmmm.......Jimmy at the NY Gtr. and Bass Boutique told me today they haven't shipped them yet. Are you sure? Who says they have one? I'd like to try one too.
Pyscho, I know you are the tube king around these parts....I'm curious what I could replace the tubes in my Sunn 300T with? Keep in mind that I know next to nothing about tubes.
The tube array in it as of now is 6 X 6550, 3 X 12AX7WA, and one 1 X 12AT7.
I don't plan on retubing anytime soon, but what would you (and anyone else here that knows something about tubes) recommend?