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Bose new PA speakers L1 Cylindrical

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by bill h, Feb 5, 2004.

  1. bill h

    bill h

    Aug 31, 2002
    small town MN
    Has any one use this? Bose new PA speaker set up

    From the site:

    A decade-long research project at Bose Corporation has resulted in an entirely new approach to amplifying live music. The new approach relies on special Cylindrical Radiator loudspeakers that project sound evenly across the stage and into the audience, maintaining consistent sound levels for both performers and audience members. These special Cylindrical Radiator loudspeakers mimic the acoustical qualities of a natural, all-acoustic unamplified performance, according to the company.

    The new loudspeakers allow musicians to hear themselves and each other, improving the quality of their performance and the players' enjoyment, with a compact system that can be set up in minutes.

    In extensive musical-performance testing conducted as part of the Bose research, panelists reported that the clarity and excitement that comes from hearing the accurate reproduction of sound from each instrument, and from hearing the sound of each instrument in its position on stage - as opposed to a mono or even stereo mix of all instruments - was unlike anything they had heard before from a traditional amplification system.

    The Cylindrical Radiator loudspeaker is a key element of the new Bose Personalized Amplification System family of products. These new products amplify any instrument, including voice, and can be used by musical groups of almost any size playing in any popular genre. They are intended to handle small venues and larger audiences of 300 people and more.

    The Problem

    Beginning in the early part of the twentieth century, and for the next 60 years, musicians used amplification equipment to project the sound of their instruments and voices to larger and larger audiences. Then, in 1965, over 55,000 music fans filled New York's Shea Stadium to witness a performance by the Beatles. This concert is legendary for its record-breaking attendance numbers. It was also reported as having severe acoustic problems.

    This event at Shea Stadium is believed to have triggered a major shift in the way live music was amplified, and the results of that shift can be seen today in venues of all sizes, including small-to-medium size venues.

    The approach developed - in use now since the 1969 Woodstock concert - uses three completely independent sound systems: the traditional "backline" of instrument amplifiers placed onstage behind the musicians; larger "PA" speakers in front of the stage, facing the audience; and "monitor" speakers onstage intended to allow the musicians to hear themselves and each other.

    In the Bose research, performers said that with these triple systems they struggled just to hear themselves on stage, and talked of the frustration of not knowing what they sound like to the audience or their fellow musicians on stage. Audience members described garbled instrument sounds, unintelligible lyrics, and uncomfortably loud sound levels.

    And yet, very little has changed over the last 30 years. The basic approach to amplification in use today is essentially the same as that employed in 1969. Bose researchers found that these triple amplification systems introduce numerous acoustical and psychoacoustical problems:

    Musicians reported being completely isolated because they had no idea how they sounded to the audience or to each other. Musicians expressed the frustration of initiating the sound but then losing control of it to the person operating the mixing console. They said they could not control how they sounded to themselves or how they sounded to each other. Audience members and musicians reported not hearing the individual instruments in their respective positions across the stage. Instead, they reported hearing the voices and instruments mixed together and coming from a single direction: the closest PA speaker in the case of the audience, and a monitor speaker in the case of the musicians. They reported how difficult it was under these circumstances to hear clearly. With all the sound coming from the nearest speaker, there was no connection between lines of sight to, and sounds from, the instruments. The sound of the guitar, for example, did not come from where the guitarist was standing on stage. Audience members reported missing interesting solos and musical details because they were busy hunting visually for who was playing. Musicians reported missing important musical cues because they could not connect what they heard with what they saw. It was common to see both audience members and musicians wearing earplugs during a performance because the sound was so loud. A typical triple amplification system requires a daunting amount of equipment, even for a smaller venue. The equipment is costly to own and operate, and is complex and time-consuming to transport, set up and use. Musicians reported that these burdens distracted them from concentration on the music. Armed with an understanding of these underlying problems, Bose engineers began work on a new approach.

    The Bose Solution

    The Bose research team developed a Cylindrical Radiator loudspeaker, which projects sound in such a way that sound levels are much more consistent on stage and throughout the audience area.

    With one Cylindrical Radiator loudspeaker for each musician, an amplified performance takes on the properties of intimate, acoustic music. A single Cylindrical Radiator loudspeaker for each performer sends music from many different directions on stage, allowing audiences and performers to hear the clarity and detail of each individual instrument and voice. The musicians are in control of their music, as in an all-acoustic unamplified performance. The products are compact, easy to use, and set up in minutes.

    A complete line of Personal Amplification System products, including the L1 Cylindrical Radiator loudspeaker, will be available this fall direct from Bose and through Guitar Center retail stores nationwide. More information about the new approach is available at www.bose.com/musicians or toll-free at 1-800-905-0886.
  2. Pete


    Jan 3, 2004
    Seattle, WA
  3. Skorzen


    Mar 15, 2002
    Springfield MA
    BOSE= Better Off Somewhere Else

    No highs no lows must be BOSE
  4. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    How about some first-hand impressions instead of hearsay and snide comments?
  5. Skorzen


    Mar 15, 2002
    Springfield MA
    Ok, I did actually see these at a gc, and the did'nt sound, that bad, if you like the bose sound. The biggist thing I thought might be a problem was they looked like they would be rather easily broken. something about a long plastic poll canected to a base in one small place just seems to be asking for problems. I could see these working for a solo or duo acoustic act, but thats about it.
  6. bill h

    bill h

    Aug 31, 2002
    small town MN

    from what I can tell this is how they are ment to be used.

    What I don't get is these are suppose to be like a FOH and a monitor, so it send the music to the FOH and the players. so isn't this going to give you some good old feedback?
  7. if you do a search for these things here, you'll find a long detailed thread on their use. Including an employee from BOSE who heard bands using said equipment.
    Snide comments aside the consenus appears to be that they don't do a good job at lows and are costly.
    Please do a search
  8. Tsal


    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    I'm guessing they are ment to be some kind of omni-radiant monitors and FOH combined, so same speakers would give the FOH both to the players and front of stage audience. The problem here is, at least how I understand them, that the monitor mix is optimally different to each player.

    The best use - what I think they are designed for - for these would probably be amplifying small acoustic session, as in one speaker would be near each player amplifying his own instrument, or one speaker would be, optimally placed something like ten-fifteen feet before the band, radiating the sound to large portion of the audience as well as back to the band giving the idea how they sound.

    On larger settings, the speakers should be damn loud to carry the sound to the back of the room, which means they can't be used on stage, as well as would probably generate feedback more easily.

    Me thinks.
  9. Nick man

    Nick man

    Apr 7, 2002
    Tampa Bay
    They have *excelent* feedback rejection.

    Ive seen them demoed (back when I used to work in GC there would be at least 5 guys asking for a serious demo a day) with mics just a couple of feet in front of them and facing them plenty of times and feedback was something I heard maybe once.

    Ive also seen a lot of guys break out electro acoustics and crank the system while they're only 4 feet away and facing the system and feedback was still slim to none.

    The way they are meant to be used is as a backline, monitor system and FOH all in one.

    You set them up behind you, pick the preset sound from its bank, and play. They are pretty loud but the bass is weak and the top end is very very brittle sounding.

    Great idea, too bad the sound was kinda eh... especially with a bass.

  10. bill h

    bill h

    Aug 31, 2002
    small town MN
    Thanks for the info.
  11. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    I don't see this being a true solution.

    The main problem with on stage volume in most cases starts with the drummer. If you could get with a drummer that uses V-drums or split sticks, or felt mallets, 90% of your problem is solved. Go to a Flecktones concert. You can hear every nuance of each player's sound. because Futch isn't slamming away on a loud drum kit, forcing everyone else to over do it on the volume. I've been with a drumemr who uses rolands. Best playing experience I ever had. Everyone ran through the PA, I also had a Kickback 12 on stage for the drummer's and my monitor. Super situation.

    If this system could allow you to project evenly to the back of the room with no need for additional montoring, that would be great. Our church has a system like these, and there are no speakers in the back of the room. But they are just singing, organ, bells sometimes...but no drums.
  12. bucephylus

    bucephylus Supporting Member Commercial User

    Aug 18, 2002
    General Manager TecPadz LLC
    We did a benefit gig last night at a very nice club here in Phoenix called Johnny's Uptown. Excellent club if you are ever in town here. They were using the Bose PAS system, and I must say that I was very impressed. It was very clear, more than loud enough, and filled the entire room with a great mix. I had heard so much negative talk that I was expecting far worse. Has anyone else had actual playing experience with this puppy?

    BTW, I did use a Woods with a Flite 15 for stage fill, but I'm not sure that would have been necessary. The bass actually sounded quite excellent in the PA.
  13. Hello to all, I am the bass player in a seven piece band, checkout our website at www.recklessunion.com. Our band has been using this system for about one year, matter of fact we just made the last payment in January. I cannot believe all the negative "opinions" I've heard on this system. First off, the cylinders are not plastic, they are well constructed of metal. Second, the cylinders have a 180 degree spread on the sound. You can stand 10 feet far left or far right or center stage, or you can be 100 feet or more anywhere in the audience and the sound will be the same. Volume wise we can blow you out of the room, lots of headroom on this system. On bass I can pound your chest till it hurts. Vocals are sharp and crystal clear. The bass units have two six and a half inch speakers per unit with 250 watts per unit, and I'm using four units. That's 1000 watts folks. Even at low volume the bass cuts right through the mix. It takes a little while to learn the system and making the adjustment mentally to what your hearing. In other words it's like....wow, I can actually hear all the instruments and vocals like I've never heard before. An added plus to this system is that you eliminate all floor monitors and those heavy PA cabs. The heaviest part of the Bose system weighs about 32 pounds. Since we started using this system our audience keep telling us how good we sound and how well they can hear all the band members. One last comment. This system makes you play better. Why? Because what you hear is exactly what the audience hears, And believe me, you will know when someone hits a wrong note or chord. Also we tried to get this system to feedback, we had to stand about 1 foot in front of the cylinder before it would start to feedback. OK, there you have it, my personal experience and opinions on this system. Regards to all. Roger Winkler
  14. jondog


    Mar 14, 2002
    NYC metro area
    A few months ago my singer landed us an endorsement deal with Bose. They do sound very good. We are slowly working up to gigging with them, but want to be absolutely comfortable with them first because it is a completely different approach. No built in reverb, independent speaker for each singer/player, only 3 band eq, etc. I have two of them set up in my music room now for rehearsals and recording sessions. The bass is full and present, the highs are clean. I ran a sine sweep on my Carvin 4x10 and could clearly hear it bottom out and give up, then I ran the same sweep with the Bose and it kept going down til I couldn't hear it. I guess any good pa should be able to beat a Carvin, but it was nice to know I was getting more lows.
  15. We are running the Bose system through several effects units. These include a sonic maximizer, a vocal enhancer, compressor limiter, and a 12 channel mixer board. We can add reverb if needed or anything else if we need it. For most venues we don't need any reverb, but it's there if we need it. This system has so many possibilities to it that even after using it for one year we are still learning new ways to use it. On my last post I mentioned I was using four of the bass units, I have since cut it down to two B1's [bass units] and sounds even better in the mix. Seems like most of the posts I've read on the Bose PAS system on this website have been for the most part, very negative, and at first I wasn't real impressed by the system. But once we learned how to use it to our advantage I was 100% sold. I hope I never have to go back to the "old way" of performing with floor monitors and stacked PA cabs. :hyper: Please give yourself some time to experiment with this system and you will truly "hear" why I like it so much. Regards, Roger Winkler:bassist: :hyper: :hyper:
  16. bucephylus

    bucephylus Supporting Member Commercial User

    Aug 18, 2002
    General Manager TecPadz LLC
    Roger, thanks for the feedback. What kind of investment is required to make this rig sit up and bark?

    One additional comment is that I am a bit surprised by the apparent disparity between the keen interest in "boutique" bass amp technology and the concurrent lack of similar effort on the PA rigs. This is especially confusing, given that the PA mix is becoming the actual tone machine for live gigs. The Bose system, as it now stands, may or may not be the "right" answer, but at least they are trying. Other than that, we get Peavey, TOA, JBL etc.; and whoever is doing the JBL gear is in no way related to the audiophiles that produced the Century monitors and other fine pieces of gear. How can this be? Am I missing some high performance options for practical club application?
  17. jondog


    Mar 14, 2002
    NYC metro area
    EAW and Meyer make high quality PA gear. This new Bose system is supposed to replace not just our amps ($$$$ already invested and gear painstakingly chosen) but also our *nice* EAW mains. That's another reason why my band is only slowly working up to gigging with them. Again, they do sound good but the concept is just so different (no amps, no monitors, no verb/comp/eq rack, no soundguy . . . ) that we refuse to move quickly. Maybe we just need to book some low pressure gigs, like a party or something, so that we can take the risk and test them in front of people.
  18. bmc


    Nov 15, 2003
    Interesting to see this thread reactivated. This past Saturday, my drummer and I went to a local music store to see a demonstration of the system. We were both highly suspect of the claims made on this system. We both believed the negative comments and thought that the glowing reviews were written by Bose. I know it's dumb, but one look at the system and the description of it and it just seemed too good to be true.

    The music store has a stage set up. They showcase gear there. They hold drum clinics, etc. Anyhow, there was one sole Bose column set up when we walked in. It was in the middle of the stage. There were seats set up in front of the stage for the audience of musicians here for the demo. The guy giving the demo was the only thing we were hearing through the system. Clear, loud with great bass definition on his voice. He then played some keyboard that had all the bells and whistles of a band in the box. Not my thing, but here in Switzerland, there is a market for that kind of drek music.

    The sound was truly impressive. While he was playing, I walked around the store to get a sense of dispersion and throw. It was all there. I was impressed. It really sounded good. Now, for 70% the venues that we play here, this system could do an excellent job. No more monitors, speaker poles, heavy cabs on the poles, etc. This system is great for small stages. In many cases we could get away with just one pole. And we're a classic rock cover band with a loud drummer.

    Now...it was good. Impressive. $3,000 per pole setup at Swiss prices impressive. Ahhh...no. But, I gotta say, I was impressed. Not just by the novelty of it, but by the clarity of sound, bass response, dispersion, throw, volume. It's an interesting system. Unconventional.
  19. bucephylus

    bucephylus Supporting Member Commercial User

    Aug 18, 2002
    General Manager TecPadz LLC
    It seems Bose is sponsoring a discussion forum on their web site for folks to discuss actual experiences. There are a variety of areas covered, including bass specific information. I've only skimmed this stuff, but some key points I've gleaned are:
    1) one system per musician is preferred
    2) the whole band preferably needs to be using this approach
    3) the bass specific systems need to be beefed up (more $$) to get the push we need

    The last point shouldn't be too surprising since bass requires more energy to drive the same perceived volume.

    The second point looks like a big stumbling block, especially since the systems are more pricey than most popular musicians can afford.

    Anyway, here's the link. If you are interested, I believe you will find quite a bit of information there. It does look interesting.

  20. Joe Smithberger

    Joe Smithberger Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2002
    Canton, Ohio, USA
    Is anyone gigging with a stereo pair of these with a mixing board? It would be interesting to hear how it would work with a stereo mix into just two.

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