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Best Type of P.A. Setup

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Dave44, Mar 31, 2003.

  1. I'm currently shopping around for a P.A. system for the band. Do I go with the self powered bass bins and satellites or the Amp powered system of old. Please help a newbie in this field. I tend to get an impression that each store is just pushing their brand of system and calling it the only way to go. That does not surprise me but it does cloud the issue. Thanx for all the input.
  2. chris4001asat


    Dec 16, 2002
    Toledo, Ohio
    Warehouse Manager : Reverend Guitars
    Definitely the amp powered. Just for repair purposes. If one of the powered speakers need a repair of somekind, it'll probably be harder trying to find a replacement rental. While just renting a power amp should be no problem. Plus you have to deal with having power cords by the front of the stage near both speakers. Then there's the weight issue.....
  3. Phat Ham

    Phat Ham

    Feb 13, 2000
    Both have their pros and cons.

    Powered speakers are easier to transport/setup as there are less pieces to move and less wires to connect. The distance between amp and speaker is also minimized, so there are less losses in the speaker wire. If you have gobs of money to spend Meyer makes some top notch stuff. If you haven't won the lottery recently and can't afford Meyer I've also heard good things about the Mackie powered speakers.

    The traditional separate amp and speaker setup is modular, so you can match an amp you like with a speaker you like. As mentioned above there is also the ability to keep using the speaker if the amp fails or vice versa.

    I'm sure there are more differences, but I'm too lazy to think. Try www.live-audio.com and see what the people there have to say.

    I'm more of a fan of the traditional setup, but that's mainly because that's just what I'm used to using.
  4. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    As a part time sound guy, I've had experience with both types of PA's. As Phat says, they've both got pros and cons.

    I've recently used a mackie self powered PA and a yorkville. Both were surprisingly good, though I was led to believe the Yorkville was much cheaper. I've also had demonstrations of HK which contain signal processing which kinda copies the Nexo's. Again, the HK's were very good for the money. For a smaller PA, or for people not technically minded, these are a great idea.

    Having said that, I prefer a modular setup. True there's more to carry but the rig becomes more versatile. Contrary to the sales pitch, the powered speakers requires almost as many leads, but they're power leads instead of speaker leads. A lot of the powered PA's put the sub on the floor and the mid-highs up a tree. This creates a place for people to put their drinks, which just happens to be right on top of the cab that contains the power amps. You'll have to be a drink nazi to avoid expensive repairs, not to mention the potential danger.