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Author Topic: Another line array thread, was "Best bang for the buck" line-array system for 12-15k  (Read 1400 times)

Scott Holtzman

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Yep.  I think VRX/KLA have their place, and even then there are audibly equivalent products for less total investment.

OTOH, if clients want to repeatedly give me their money for a particular product, we'll buy it.  Having inventory of gear that customers want to have on their events is prudent, even if we don't care for a particular item or model ourselves.

If it's the wrong product from the gig, my job is to make the best possible presentation of the shit sandwich the client is paying for.  Most days I'm SoundGuy, but sometimes I'm "Chef de le merde."

That's mierda as in La cabeza de mierda, not a compliment.  Everything else makes sense.  The real bottom line is they are going to sound better than the KLA's not as good as SRX's.  When I sub them for the KLA's those folks are going to feel they got a lot for their dollar.  When we fly them they will be the right speaker for the space.  If I need to do something bigger I will sub out vertec (sticking with JBL but any top name) as they are going to want more console than the si performer 3 anyway.
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Scott AKA Skyking
Passion Fuel Productions, Cleveland OH

Scott Holtzman

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Well stated.

I would argue that the LARGE majority of people who want a "line array" can't even give you a good reason why.  Except they want "line array".

As if that term (or type of system) is somehow going to magically make it sound better.  In most cases-unless used properly (and most people don't have a clue how it work-how it should be used-what the limitations are etc) it will sound worse than a decent "point source" system.

They want it because it is "popular" and somehow think that they are all the same.

Probably the same mentality that thinks that if you add a compressor or gate or other "toy" to the system-it will somehow be "better".

NOT unless used properly-which most are not.

Currently line arrays have their place in the market-but I would argue that in probably 99% (give or take just a little) of the cases where they are used-a good point source system would outperform them at a much lower cost.

Before you use ANY tool-you have to be sure to use the RIGHT tool.

A socket set is a good tool.  But in a lot of cases an old fashioned wrench will work better-but not in all cases.

The proper tool for the job-but unfortunately most people don't even know what the job really is :( or what it would take to do it right.

They just want to jump on the "popular" wagon.

Mark my words.   By the end of this decade-you will see less and less line arrays being used and a trend back to good point source systems.  Cheaper-easier to use-sound better and so forth.

Bob, I will say that I have twisted the OP and kept the thread over to talk about Vertec/KLA and maybe DB Audioteknic AL series (although list they cost more) I am sure there are others in the class.

I could not care less if it's a line array, a trap or shaped like a kazoo.  What I am looking for is the downside in the so call modularity of these product lines.  Will they scale from a sub/poll/2 stack for a 300 person club gig to a 1500 person political event where intelligibility is key?  Unless I am missing something I can carry 3 or 4 SKU's for my entire loudspeaker inventory.  That is smart business.  I want to provide fine audio and good value.  My personal technical preferences and emotions don't come into play.  I am 50 not 15.

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Scott AKA Skyking
Passion Fuel Productions, Cleveland OH

Ray Aberle

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Really like the website Ray, a nice well thought out inventory.  I hope you don't mind if I borrow your fridge in a rack idea.  That is simply a brilliant, "high touch" customer centric idea.  Very fine work all around.
I am honored. :) It's more for my crew then it would be for the clients, but I've no problem handing an event organizer a nice, cold bottle of water or soda out of the fridge if they looked parched. Or a pack of smokes, which is funny cos *I* don't smoke, but I have guys who do-- and if we're on day two of a 3-day festival and someone is out of cigarettes, I want to be "that guy" who saves their day!

It started as a 16sp (extra deep) amp rack, then I realised a pile of RMX/PLX weighs like 200 pounds. Then it became an EQ rack, and I realised it was too deep for that. I think it spent a day as a cable drawer rack, then last winter I realised the RedBull fridge fit in it perfectly. Get one from your local bar.

-Ray
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Kelcema Audio
Regional - Serving Pacific Northwest (OR, WA, ID, BC)

Scott Holtzman

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I am honored. :) It's more for my crew then it would be for the clients, but I've no problem handing an event organizer a nice, cold bottle of water or soda out of the fridge if they looked parched. Or a pack of smokes, which is funny cos *I* don't smoke, but I have guys who do-- and if we're on day two of a 3-day festival and someone is out of cigarettes, I want to be "that guy" who saves their day!

It started as a 16sp (extra deep) amp rack, then I realised a pile of RMX/PLX weighs like 200 pounds. Then it became an EQ rack, and I realised it was too deep for that. I think it spent a day as a cable drawer rack, then last winter I realised the RedBull fridge fit in it perfectly. Get one from your local bar.

-Ray

We tend to be Monster drinkers here.  They have cool countertop fridges too.  It is surprising how much of a difference the little courtesies can make.  In both of my business's my guys get tired of me telling them to do the neatest work, even when the customer or other vendors have not bothered, never leave trash on a customer site.  If you don't know ask someone.  You know the drill.  Have a good week.

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Scott AKA Skyking
Passion Fuel Productions, Cleveland OH

Scott Holtzman

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I wanted to add some advice to someone reading this thread, that like me is torn if CC line arrays make sense for their applications or customers.

I downloaded Ease_Focus software from the QSC website then the manufacturer data from focus.afmg.eu

Modeling coverage is engrossing.  The visual representation as you adjust the parameters was an eye opener.  Understanding the difference in propagation between a given point source and line array is amazing.  You will come away with a much better idea what you are going to get and what you will not!

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Scott AKA Skyking
Passion Fuel Productions, Cleveland OH

Ivan Beaver

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I wanted to add some advice to someone reading this thread, that like me is torn if CC line arrays make sense for their applications or customers.

I downloaded Ease_Focus software from the QSC website then the manufacturer data from focus.afmg.eu

Modeling coverage is engrossing.  The visual representation as you adjust the parameters was an eye opener.  Understanding the difference in propagation between a given point source and line array is amazing.  You will come away with a much better idea what you are going to get and what you will not!
EXACTLY!!!!!!!!!!!

You HAVE to get out an play with the gear.  And even playing in models can give a great insight into what can and cannot be done and what happens when you do "this".

It is often NOT what you would think.

By playing around in models-it is much faster-you can look at a lot of results much easier-over a wider freq/coverage range than normal than you can simply by setting up the gear and walking around.

They can really help narrow down the possibilities.

Are they perfect-no-but they do deal with the theoretical possibilities of a particular setup. There are a lot of variables that the models do not take into account.

But they are a HUGE step forward.

And be sure to turn off smoothing (if possible) to get a better idea of what is really happening.
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A complex question is easily answered by a simple-easy to understand WRONG answer!

Ivan Beaver
Danley Sound Labs

PHYSICS- NOT FADS!

TJ (Tom) Cornish

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Nearly any issue worth talking about (there are a few exceptions, of course), is such because there isn't always a clear cut answer for everyone in every situation.

Decision making logic for any substantial decision should be roughly as follows:

1.  Am I a business, or am I a hobby/charitable organization/crazy person?
   a. If not a business, do whatever the heck you want, because you make all the rules. -> GOTO END
   b. If a business, will what you are looking into make you more money/save you time or cost/allow you to grow?
      b1. no -> DON'T BUY IT.  GOTO END
      b2. Yes
         b2a. Have you done a complete business plan to be sure of this - i.e. financing, depreciation, customer demand, competitive analysis?
            b2a1. No -> GOTO START and really mean it this time.
            b2a2. Yes
               b2a2a. Have you evaluated all other reasonable options and determined that this is the best choice - i.e. allows
                          you to make the most money and/or save the most time?
                          b2a2a1. No -> Look more broadly; GOTO START
                          b2a2a2. Yes
                             b2a2a2a. Does this sound better than all other choices?
                                b2a2a2a1. Yes -> Buy it, you lucky dog.
                                b2a2a2a2. No -> Buy it anyway and remember that you are a business and not shopping for a home stereo.


There's a lot of good advice in the thread, as always, though there are some pitfalls on the side of the advice asker as well as the advice giver.  People asking for advice frequently have tunnel vision, and/or suffer from at least partial self-deception as to their situation, due to dreams, wishes, lack of knowledge, inexperience, etc.  Being willing to at least carefully consider the advice given is a sign of maturity, and will likely lead to success.  Coming to the forum for validation of what you already have decided will usually lead to unhappiness - if you're not open to a different answer, you may as well not even ask the question; and you'll either be right, or you'll be able to learn your lesson without public humiliation.

People giving advice can occasionally suffer from tunnel vision too - assuming that everyone's situation and goals are the same as theirs.  Some things are universally true - Ohm's law, death and taxes, etc.  Which speaker system is correct for every person is not universally true.

 
« Last Edit: July 14, 2014, 09:42:14 am by TJ (Tom) Cornish »
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Tim McCulloch

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I wanted to add some advice to someone reading this thread, that like me is torn if CC line arrays make sense for their applications or customers.

I downloaded Ease_Focus software from the QSC website then the manufacturer data from focus.afmg.eu

Modeling coverage is engrossing.  The visual representation as you adjust the parameters was an eye opener.  Understanding the difference in propagation between a given point source and line array is amazing.  You will come away with a much better idea what you are going to get and what you will not!

Thank you, thank you, thank you.  This is what I try to get across in my posts.  You've probably discovered that array physics isn't intuitive - that what we presume works a particular way, often does not.

Free software and a few hours can help keep one from making a poor purchase decision, and is why I categorically reject any "system" that doesn't have software and/or data for 3rd party software like EASE Focus.
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Chewing through your wimpy dreams
They eat without a sound,
Digesting England by the pound.

Scott Holtzman

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Nearly any issue worth talking about (there are a few exceptions, of course), is such because there isn't always a clear cut answer for everyone in every situation.

Decision making logic for any substantial decision should be roughly as follows:

1.  Am I a business, or am I a hobby/charitable organization/crazy person?
   a. If not a business, do whatever the heck you want, because you make all the rules. -> GOTO END
   b. If a business, will what you are looking into make you more money/save you time or cost/allow you to grow?
      b1. no -> DON'T BUY IT.  GOTO END
      b2. Yes
         b2a. Have you done a complete business plan to be sure of this - i.e. financing, depreciation, customer demand, competitive analysis?
            b2a1. No -> GOTO START and really mean it this time.
            b2a2. Yes
               b2a2a. Have you evaluated all other reasonable options and determined that this is the best choice - i.e. allows
                          you to make the most money and/or save the most time?
                          b2a2a1. No -> Look more broadly; GOTO START
                          b2a2a2. Yes
                             b2a2a2a. Does this sound better than all other choices?
                                b2a2a2a1. Yes -> Buy it, you lucky dog.
                                b2a2a2a2. No -> Buy it anyway and remember that you are a business and not shopping for a home stereo.


There's a lot of good advice in the thread, as always, though there are some pitfalls on the side of the advice asker as well as the advice giver.  People asking for advice frequently have tunnel vision, and/or suffer from at least partial self-deception as to their situation, due to dreams, wishes, lack of knowledge, inexperience, etc.  Being willing to at least carefully consider the advice given is a sign of maturity, and will likely lead to success.  Coming to the forum for validation of what you already have decided will usually lead to unhappiness - if you're not open to a different answer, you may as well not even ask the question; and you'll either be right, or you'll be able to learn your lesson without public humiliation.

People giving advice can occasionally suffer from tunnel vision too - assuming that everyone's situation and goals are the same as theirs.  Some things are universally true - Ohm's law, death and taxes, etc.  Which speaker system is correct for every person is not universally true.

If I was not open to suggestion I would not be wasting your time.  I am sure others don't think the same.

If I want validation I will go to my wife/dog/girlfriend etc.

The next step is to develop a decision matrix, weight technical vs. business variables. 

It is worth pointing out that the winner may not be the "best" in what you feel is an important technical parameter.  If it makes sense for me to stay a QSC shop then I need to know what kind of dog food they are putting in my bowl.

Thanks to everyone.

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Scott AKA Skyking
Passion Fuel Productions, Cleveland OH

TJ (Tom) Cornish

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If I was not open to suggestion I would not be wasting your time.  I am sure others don't think the same.

If I want validation I will go to my wife/dog/girlfriend etc.

The next step is to develop a decision matrix, weight technical vs. business variables. 

It is worth pointing out that the winner may not be the "best" in what you feel is an important technical parameter.  If it makes sense for me to stay a QSC shop then I need to know what kind of dog food they are putting in my bowl.

Thanks to everyone.
My comments were general observations, not necessarily applicable to you.  You have clearly shown initiative and desire to understand the whole situation; many others are unwilling.
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