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Is Aguilar worth all that $$$$$?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by peteroberts, Jun 12, 2002.


  1. I've heard many people talk about how great the Aggie sound is.

    I am in the market for a good studio-quality preamp that I can also use live...I saw the DB-680 (very expensive!) and the DB-659...are they worth all that moolah? They seem to be 1 1/2 - 2x more expensive than anything else.
     
  2. BFunk

    BFunk Supporting Member

    I own a DB 728. It's their 400 watt tube power amp. The list on this is $2800.00, street is about $2200.00. I love this amp, but could never justify the retail price. I found one used for $1000.00 on ebay. That is a great deal for a very high quality, high power, tube amp.

    If you are looking at studio-quality pre-amps you should look at Kern, (which I own), and Demeter. Avalon makes a very good mic pre that many top players use.
     
  3. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Like anything else, the Aguilar preamps have their own sound and if that's the sound you want, then save your pennies and buy one.
     
  4. I know you're talking about the amps and preamps, but I'd like to point out that Aguilar speaker cabs are very reasonably priced for the quality you get. They're not much more expensive than Peavey and Hartke stuff, really.
     
  5. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    I don't know where you are pricing the DB659, but it is priced at the same price point as the Demeter pre, Ashdown pre, new Alembic preamps, $100 cheaper than the Kern Ip-777, etc.

    The DB680 is a lot more expensive, but you also get more preamp.

    I picked up the DB750, and I can say that I've never heard a bass amp that sounds as good (to my ears).

    So, to me, it was worth the money after trying about 10 different bass amps.
     
  6. jokerjkny

    jokerjkny

    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    i actually agree they can be a little too high priced, but some of the estimates seem too high. if you price match and shop around enough, you'll find a good deal. best bet is slightly used on ebay.

    remember they are a higher echelon of product in line with Demeter, Kern, Euphonic Audio, so its gonna command a higher price than Hartke, SWR, Mesa.
     
  7. Golem II

    Golem II

    Jan 4, 2002
    Macon, GA, USA
    I've noticed that the Aguilar 659 (the cheap one) usually sells used for about $600 (more than used Kerns usually go for, and close to a used Aggie 680.) This is as opposed to Demeter and Alembic pre's which go for $300-400. If you're buying used, I doubt that the tone of the 659 would make up for the price. If you want the Aguilar sound, you might as well go the whole 9 yards and get one of the heads or the DB 680.
     
  8. Steven Green

    Steven Green

    Jul 25, 2001
    Pacific NW
    Go for a slightly used DB 680...mmm...delicious!
     
  9. Golem II

    Golem II

    Jan 4, 2002
    Macon, GA, USA
    You've got to look HARD for an affordable price on a used 680, though. People price them anywhere from $750 to $1200.
     
  10. so how about driving a Crown CE1000 with the 659? What do you get with the 680 that you don't get with the 659?
     
  11. Craig Garfinkel

    Craig Garfinkel

    Aug 25, 2000
    Hartford, CT
    Endorsing Artist: Sadowsky Guitars
    My DB750 cost me around $1400, and is worth every penny. That price is the same or cheaper than its competitors...SWR mo'bass, SWR 750x, Eden Wt-1000, top-o-the-line Ampeg. And, to my ears anyway, it buries the competition. Clean, fat and very loud...granted not qualities you're lookin' for in a date, but we're talkin' bass amps here. :D
     
  12. FalsehoodBass

    FalsehoodBass

    Jul 22, 2001
    Denver, CO
    and i like my dates loud at certain points in the evening.



    any ideas on where to price a 680? Ebay, basscentra, others?
     
  13. coyoteboy

    coyoteboy easy there, Ned Supporting Member

    Mar 29, 2000
    Sactomato, CA
    I wouldn't have been able to afford my 680 and 728 if I hadn't bought them used. You don't get the ten year warranty, but you can't have everything.
     
  14. jokerjkny

    jokerjkny

    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    how bout EQ options up the yingyang? hehe... :D

    seriously, the 680's waaay more versatile than the 659. the 680's got 2 stages of bass boost, while the 659 has one. the sweepable EQ lets you dial in whatever you want. but the real kicker is that the 680's got five 12ax7's glowing inside vs. only the two 12ax7's in the 659. pretty much explains the addictive tone and why it rocks alot of other pre's as well.

    the 659 would be nice to me, but only if Aggie didnt make the scrumptous 680. ;)
     
  15. BFunk

    BFunk Supporting Member

    I have the Kern with a 728, which is really nice. I compared the Kern/Ag to a 359, which is basically a 659 + 1/2 of a 728. I preferred the Kern. I would love to try a 680 with the 728. How do you like the combination?
     
  16. jokerjkny

    jokerjkny

    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    uh... orgasmic? :D
     
  17. coyoteboy

    coyoteboy easy there, Ned Supporting Member

    Mar 29, 2000
    Sactomato, CA
    Well, it IS heavy. but you knew that. I haven't really fiddled with EQ all that much, just using it flat, sometimes using the bass boost, sometimes not. I haven't recorded with the 680 yet, I hope to be able to soon. As soon as I get my new Chapman Stick dialed in how I want it, I'll be using the 680 in conjunction with an SWR IOD both fronted by an Alembic SF-2, and things will get interesting then...

    p.s., I am getting close, I think, to retubeing the 728 with JJ KT88's. If the 728 transformer can handle the additional output, that is.
     
  18. jokerjkny

    jokerjkny

    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    OMG, dont!

    JJ's are soooo overrated these days. dont bother with them if you're expecting a huge tonal change. they're prolly worse than what Aguilar uses stock.

    you're not gonna get much of a diff with different tubes unless you go whole hog and hunt down a set of Genelex KT88s or relabelled Tung Sol 6550's.

    if you want something nicer than you have try Svetlana KT88's. Svet's are a great russian tube, and would kick JJ's butt.
     
  19. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    I'm using an Alembic SF-2 Superfilter with my DB750. I can dial in some amazing tones. Everything from crystal clear to dub to some pretty crazy overdriven tones. I thought I'd want to add an IOD at some point in the future, but I'm able to create enough grit when I want just by using a heavier hand, and pushing the tubes harder. They dynamic range of this preamp is astounding. I figure if I really want to go crazy, I can toss my Sansamp in the chain, and push everything that much harder.

    Of course, the second I heard an IOD in the chain, I'm sure it'd be different, and I'd have to have one. :D
     
  20. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Sorry, the 3 extra tubes are just there to do all the extra EQ. It really doesn't add anything to the overall tone. Run both Ag pres flat and they sound the same.