guidelines to help define what is meant by venue size

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by ::::BASSIST::::, Oct 28, 2005.

  1. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    What are some rough guidelines to help define what is meant by small, medium and large venues?

    here is my guess:

    small - up to the size of a 7-11 convenience store and smaller?
    medium - the size of the interior of a Mc Donald's restaurant?
    large - over 3000 sq feet?

    Also, how much stage volume does a bassist require of his/her rig for a moderate-volumel-level band with pa support?
  2. The Clap

    The Clap

    Jan 5, 2004
    Scottsdale, AZ
    Where I live, almost all 7-11s are a different size, and McDonald's restaurants vary greatly in square footage. And, really, even if you work just in square feet it's not much more easily understood. If the question is 'Why don't we have specific guidelines for the size of venues?' then your attempt at classification is a good answer. I very rarely hear people talk about the size of venues in ways that confuse me, except on these boards when people say they need an amplifier to play in 'medium-sized' clubs.
  3. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    yeah, i was trying to think of places that are common in N. America. It really can be difficult to understand what people mean when they use the terms small, medium or large, because they are so general and vague. Small, medium and large compared to what? is the question.

    I dont go to bars or clubs, basically at all. I dont drink, or dance and I am a family man who has never been into that kind of scene, perhaps this is why I dont have the common sense of the language people use to describe venue size.
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    My guidelines for clubs:

    Small: less than 200 people capacity.

    Medium: between 200-1000 capacity.

    Large: Anything over 1000 capacity.

    My guidelines for any venues:

    Small: less than 1000 capacity

    Medium: 1000-5000

    Large: 5000 and up.

    With PA support, all you really need is an amp loud enough to where you can hear yourself. I have played 10,000 seat arenas with a 25 watt Ampeg B-15N from 1966 and heard myself just fine. I don't recommend this for metal bands, but for the oldies shows I was doing it was just fine. The generally accepted minimum for an arena, though, is either a 4 x 10" cab or a 1 x 15" cab with 300 watts of power. But it does depend on the type of music you're doing. I've seen bands that wouldn't dream of doing arenas with anything less than 4 SVT cabinets and 4 SVT heads (1200 watts total), but I've also seen bands use a 300 watt head with a 4 x 10" and sound great. The rule of thumb is being able to hear yourself without distorting.
  5. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    That is good to know. Dont think I'll being playing any arenas anytime soon... or at all that is.:smug:

    That info about amp power and venue size is also very helpful. Often I hear of people on TB who have 1200-2400w rigs and i think is my 600w going to be enough? But I am guessing the key difference is that these loud rigs are meant specifically while playing without pa support. The venues in my area almost all have pa support so I should be okay.