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Crazy idea: using Powered GK MB 115's for PA!

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by alaskaleftybass, Oct 14, 2013.


  1. alaskaleftybass

    alaskaleftybass Will Hanbury, Jr. Supporting Member

    Mar 21, 2012
    Sitka, Alaska
    Hi all, so here's my latest crazy idea. As far as I can tell, the PA industry hasn't kept up with the light high powered cabs that the bass industry is using. I have a couple powered speakers that weigh a ton, with 15" drivers, bi-amped. They sound great, BUT, I was wondering:

    Could I use a couple Gallien Krueger MBE 115 400 watt powered cabinets for speakers with my non powered mixer? Instead of packing around 100 pounds of speakers I would be packing 66 pounds for two powered speakers. WOW that would be easy. And 400 watts each, with built in tweeters. I'ved tried the MB115 with the line in playing music tracks and it sounds as good as a stereo.

    I don't play super loud gigs mostly coffee houses and small lounges that require a good quality sound with good bottom end, but not necessarily very loud.

    So please feel free to give your honest opinions.Thanks:bassist:
     
  2. modulusman

    modulusman Banned

    Jan 18, 2004
    montana
    There are a lot of lightweight powered PA cabinets available. One problem I can see is the GKs are not designed to sit on a speaker stand so unless you can figure out a way to get them up to ear level you are screwed.
     
  3. pglaser01

    pglaser01

    Mar 19, 2013
    St. Louis, MO
    If only I were that good....
    You are talking about the MBP series, not the MBE which are only extension cabinets... the MBP 115 is only rated at 200 watts...sorry
     
  4. alaskaleftybass

    alaskaleftybass Will Hanbury, Jr. Supporting Member

    Mar 21, 2012
    Sitka, Alaska
    I'm talking about the powered speakers, Gallien-Krueger 115MBP 1x15 Bass Powered Speaker Cabinets 200W. Yes they are 200 watts, but two cabinets at 400 watts I think would probably be sufficient for small venues.

    As far as speaker stands, you CAN buy small pole mounts that recess into the bottom of the cabinet and allow the cabinet to pole mount.

    I'm wondering would they perform fine for most DJ music and small band use?

    Feel like I'm trying to pull teeth here lol :confused:
     
  5. pglaser01

    pglaser01

    Mar 19, 2013
    St. Louis, MO
    If only I were that good....
    What are you currently running? And have you ever tried using vocals into one before? I tried it in a pinch at a rehearsal and wasn't a fan...

    DJ music perhaps, though you'll have to leave the horn on at all times or else you'll get no vocal definition...but beware I felt and know others who thought that the horn isn't dead quiet, especially if you want to turn the volume up.
     
  6. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    Huh? There are tons.....literally tons......of powerful, lightweight PA cabinets on the market today. Any 5 minute walk through Guitar Center is all it would take to confirm. And most, if not all of them will perform dramatically better for PA use than a cabinet designed specifically for bass.
     
  7. pglaser01

    pglaser01

    Mar 19, 2013
    St. Louis, MO
    If only I were that good....
    Don't get discouraged...no one is going to say you can't do it or that it won't work for you...it's your gig and your $$$ You're just gonna have a lot of replies that it may not be the best option out there :)
     
  8. modulusman

    modulusman Banned

    Jan 18, 2004
    montana
    It will probably sound like crap but maybe the OP doesn't care since it sounds like he is too lazy to bring his real PA to the gig.
     
  9. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    :rollno:
     
  10. alaskaleftybass

    alaskaleftybass Will Hanbury, Jr. Supporting Member

    Mar 21, 2012
    Sitka, Alaska
    It's ignorant of you to make a judgement of my work ethic based on a general question about using powered bass speakers. Having a bad day??? Go somewhere else and keep your attitude to yourself please. I don't need or wnat visits like this.
     
  11. elgecko

    elgecko

    Apr 30, 2007
    Anasleim, CA
  12. modulusman

    modulusman Banned

    Jan 18, 2004
    montana
    I can drive a screw with a hammer but it isn't the right tool for the job. Why don't void whatever warranty is left on your bass amps by cutting holes in the bottom to add your pole stands. :D
     
  13. HUnt49

    HUnt49

    Jan 14, 2008
    This is not such a crazy idea.

    Keyboard amps are often used this way... and a good keyboard amp and a flat-response bass amp are not that far apart. In fact, I think you can get better full-range (low end) response from these types of amps than from comparably priced powered mains. I've heard of bands using Acme B2's as mains to good effect. I do acoustic guitar solo work, and often use a coaxial powered 10" (happens to be a Roland CB-30 bass amp) getting signal from a Bose T1 mixer. Without a good mixer it wouldn't work. I place it on an amp stand to my side, and it's main/monitor for small gigs. It sounds really great to sing through- but only if I use the aux in and bypass the preamp. The stand uncouples it from the floor, which helps eliminate excess bass.


    What you need to make it work:
    • Use a relatively flat response speaker - consider keyboard amps too, since more of them will be flat
    • if possible, find one with an aux in that bypasses bass preamp tone shaping
    • a mixer with good eq to overcome any bass-specific cab freqs

    I'm interested in the Carvin MB12 for this purpose... you can't find a compact, powered, 3-way powered speaker like that, even for twice the price. I don't know how flat the response is on them, but I might give one a try.

    As bass cabs move toward full-range flat response speakers, they will be useful for pretty much any application.
     
  14. gareth dunster

    gareth dunster

    Dec 8, 2009
    I haven't got a hammer will this wrench do? Provably you could drive a nail with it but a hammer is usually better. WILL IT WORK? Yes.
     
  15. huckleberry1

    huckleberry1

    Jul 1, 2013
    Mesquite, Texas
    student
    I've got that combo & an MBP 410
     
  16. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    the Cali Intergalctic Mind Space
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
    Or an outboard eq....maybe a 31 band so you can use the lowest freqs as low-cut filters.

    Hey, all's you can do is try it...no downside to that.

    Good luck.
     
  17. Hi.

    If You do try it, don't blow up your MBE 115's.

    The EQ idea is good, running them through a loudspeaker processor even better.

    Actually, it's the opposite, but since quality costs in PA circles we don't see or get to work with those cabs very often.

    If You do that, make sure that the bottoms of the cabs are sturdy enough to have the pole mount securely attached.


    I'd assume the basis for the confusion You're experiencing is that you're not the first who have had a similar idea, and you're definitely not going to be the last.

    Some have tried, and noticed it doesn't quite offer the advantages we thought, some have just done the feasibility study and discovered that there's a "better" way.

    Hey, at least You didn't want to use a MI bass cab as a "sub" ;).


    Over here a hammer is often called a Russian Screwdriver.
    The slot in the screw is for taking it off, much faster to hammer it in :).

    Regards
    Sam
     

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