ProSoundWeb Community

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

Pages: 1 2 [All]   Go Down

Author Topic: Electro Voice ETX-12P review  (Read 4930 times)

Luke Geis

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1049
    • Owner of Endever Music Production's
Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« on: December 20, 2015, 04:15:31 pm »

I finally had a chance to hear these in action! It was not my system, but I got the rare chance to have two PA's set up side by side for a two day stint. One of the PA's was set up for the band ( mine ) and the other one for the DJ ( the DJ's system obviously ). The DJ system consisted of a pair of the ETX-12P's and a pair of QSC-KW181's. The ETX was set for an external ETX sub, which was weird, but not my PA and not really going to effect the results for the speaker of interest. My PA was all JBL PRX-500 series gear that is long in the tooth, but still relevant. I love my little PA, lets just say that.

So the ETX-12P does sound really good. I would say that EV spent some time making the box as neutral and linear as could be for the price point. The highs are crystal clear and was the more prominent sound of the speaker ( it was surely set for music mode ) , but also keep in mind it was crossed over around 100hz with a FIR filter that is pretty steep I would imagine, so if there was any boom from the box, it was not going to be there in this instance. The highs are very sweet and clear and do not crunch or break up much at all even when being pushed to the limiters. The DJ had the things pegged both nights and they get plenty loud and stay clean all the way to the end of the road. That is where the love affair ends though.

So while the ETX's do sound great all the way to the end of their limits, they have some shortcomings. The box starts to limit at about +10dbu and the peak light fires up at about +14dbu ( as indicated on the speakers LCD screen ). There is no indication if this was RMS or peak levels, so that much I don't know. The speakers literature says that the input peak is at +18dbu and that the speaker will reduce it's output to maintain performance by a set amount ( user configurable ) so the speaker won't shut off. The stock setting in the speaker is a -4db reduction. If that level reduction is applied to the input I can see why peak was reached at +14dbu? What I do know is that the limiter was engaged, the peaked input indicator was on and the speaker showed the temp warning as well. The bad news........ The speaker muted output for brief moments starting in the middle of his set. The even worse news is that the SPL was not as loud as you would think given all the warning lights! The PA was cranked that is a fact and it was very loud, but not 120+ db loud.

My confidence in this model is a little shattered right now. While the DJ was definitely playing too loud, it was not so loud that you are like OMG I have to leave now! The good news as mentioned is that the sound quality is stellar all the way till the speaker says no more. The DJ was a little bit louder than the band was, but not too much ( probably about 4-6db louder ). Keep in mind the band will also have a much higher crest factor..... So for me to get nearly as loud as the DJ and not see a single clip light all night is a little disturbing. I do believe the ETX would sound amazing for live use as they are very linear right out of the box, but the shutting down and low level of headroom may be the weak link of the ETX-12P. The DJ only had a two hour set and every warning light and protection mode was engaged within one hour of the DJ's set! I would say that if you do live sound and have to get more than 105+db in any particular place on the dance floor regularly, you may want to consider something other than the ETX-12P?
Logged
I don't understand how you can't hear your self

Lyle Williams

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1122
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #1 on: December 24, 2015, 03:11:33 pm »

That has not been my experience with ETX.  Where was the gain control on the back set?

I got ETX so they could be DJ-proof, and so far it has been.  No shut downs or anything like that.  They run in the sun with no problems too.
Logged

Luke Geis

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1049
    • Owner of Endever Music Production's
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #2 on: December 24, 2015, 03:57:53 pm »

The gain control will be irrelevant in this case. Remember that the gain knob is only for attenuation. It was at noon though. The limiter light was on, the temp light was on, the peak light was on and the input meter level did flash +18dbu several times while I was observing it.  The limiting and input clip were engaged by +14dbu though and may have been set up that way intentionally? I did feel the amp and it was hot, but not ouch hot. The fan was working. The other fact is that the speakers did cut out and shut down for brief moments intermittently. All this and it still sounded acceptable! The DJ was LOUD, lets not overlook that. It was loud enough to make you not want to be near the speakers, but not so in the dance area where the SPL was probably sitting around 105db C. The middle of the dance floor would have put you about 25' away from either speaker.

Having done a little more research on reviews, there does seem to be some folks who prefer the box set to live mode and not music. The consensus is that the box has more level and is more apparent when in live mode. The box above was set for music mode and had the the crossover set for another ETX sub, so I'm rather certain the crossover was at least 100hz and rather steep  being that it's a FIR filter. So the box sounded mid cut with an extended high end. The box in full range and live mode most certainly would have sounded more even and would have had more impact / SPL.
Logged
I don't understand how you can't hear your self

Paul G. OBrien

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 670
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #3 on: December 25, 2015, 09:23:43 pm »

The limiter light was on, the temp light was on, the peak light was on and the input meter level did flash +18dbu several times while I was observing it.  The limiting and input clip were engaged by +14dbu
  That is sad, the DJ had his mixer redlined for sure.. good thing it was his own gear. This can only be considered excessively abusive conditions IMO but can I ask where the DJ was located relative to the speakers and was this a well damped ballroom perhaps? DJs like to be positioned right on the dancefloor and right behind the speakers when possible, this makes them feel like they are involved in the party and it also means they usually get pummeled with bass.. if their decks aren't dancing on the table they aren't happy. So if you then stick them over in the corner well away from the speakers and the dancefloor they will drive the system well beyond what they would normally.. trying in vain to get that feeling they are used to. Then add in a room with lots of carpets and upholstery instead of hard surfaces and the issue gets worse.

Having done a little more research on reviews, there does seem to be some folks who prefer the box set to live mode and not music. The consensus is that the box has more level and is more apparent when in live mode.
Yes.. music mode scoops the mids so when max output is required(subs or not) live mode is the better choice and adding some sparkle on the topend is easy enough.. even for a DJ.
« Last Edit: December 25, 2015, 09:26:49 pm by Paul G. OBrien »
Logged

Lyle Williams

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1122
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2015, 01:57:34 pm »

The analogue gain control can matter.  With anything that contains a DSP, you need to ensure that you don't clip the signal at the ADC.
Logged

Luke Geis

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1049
    • Owner of Endever Music Production's
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2015, 09:23:20 pm »

Lyle

    I completely understand what you mean and the point your making. However the input knob is still nothing more than an attenuator. If the speakers input at the ADC will clip at +18dbu, it will do it regardless of where the input knob is set. If the input trim is all the way down and you send it enough level that the meter goes to +18dbu, then you have still clipped the ADC. Conversely if the input knob is all the way up and you again acquire +18dbu, you will clip the ADC. In this case the knob was set to unity or 0db. The DJ, sound guy, or whoever else that uses the speaker is likely going to push the speaker to the desired volume regardless of where the input knob is trimmed to. The speaker will arrive at the same max SPL no matter where that knob is set. It will simply either require more or less drive signal from the mixer to get the desired SPL.

In this case, as per the ETX manual: "  The meter is post INPUT 1 gain control, but before MASTER VOL control. At signals above +18 dBu, the input indicates CLIP. " Now this amp also has a master volume control which will allow up to +10db of gain. The master volume of the speaker under test were set at 0db. Again the total produced SPL of the speaker will be the same no matter where it's set. It will only change the level of drive signal required at the speaker to reach X SPL.

The speaker in this case could have had the input trim turned down a couple few db's and would have kept the input and subsequent parts of the speaker out of clip, but would have also lowered the SPL output as well. This means that if the desired level was set where the DJ wanted it, he would have turned it up more at the mixer to get that level again, which would put things right back where they were. This was not my PA and was not under my control, so I only observed and took notes. The unfortunate thing is that in this case, the DJ was asking for more than the speakers had to give.
Logged
I don't understand how you can't hear your self

Guy Graham

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 143
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2015, 09:48:25 am »

I noticed those EV loudspeakers use the "FIR Drive" (or similar) phrase on all boxes in the range, including subs.

I was surprised to see this on the subwoofer models. My understanding was that FIR filter latency increased to the point it becomes impractical to use these filter types as low down as subwoofer frequencies.

For example I clearly recall in the training and other information produced by Martin for MLA, they stated that FIR "vanishing point" (in their terminology) filters were only used as far down as the low mids - I can't recall exactly but I guess circa 300Hz. Below that digital implementation of IIR filters were used, due to latency issues.

I appreciate MLA came out several years before EV ETX, but I'm surprised that a $1000 MI loudspeaker has successfully used FIR filters, that could not be properly utilized on significantly more expensive and more sophisticated powered loudspeakers?

Sent from my GT-I8160

Logged

Lyle Williams

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1122
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2015, 03:22:00 pm »

Better maths gives you lower latency filters.
Logged

Guy Graham

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 143
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #8 on: December 31, 2015, 04:20:57 pm »

Better maths gives you lower latency filters.

So have EV got better maths that allow them to use FIR filters on subwoofers?

If so, can such be used on MLA - or is the design of the latter restricted to the technology that was available when it was originally designed and developed?

Sent from my GT-I8160

Logged

Lyle Williams

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1122
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #9 on: January 01, 2016, 03:49:43 am »

The world has better maths now.  Or maybe all the other magic going on in the MLA created constraints not found in a simpler product.

I'd be surprised if a vendor provided a firmware upgrade for this, even if their older silicon could run a newer algorithm.

Too easy for there to be mixed fleets of upgraded/not-upgraded boxes, or bugs being introduced into a reliable product.
Logged

Brandon Wright

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 90
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2016, 02:36:06 pm »

EV uses the term FIR-drive to describe the processing suite. They may be using the FIR block to implement the minimum phase (normal PEQ), because these filters have all of their energy up front and therefore do not impart any additional delay.

However, they are not using FIR filters for phase correction in the sub (non-minimum phase). When FIR filters  are used in this way, the resulting latency is directly tied to the frequency of interests and no fancy new maths can fix that.
Logged

Guy Graham

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 143
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #11 on: January 07, 2016, 10:59:37 pm »

EV uses the term FIR-drive to describe the processing suite. They may be using the FIR block to implement the minimum phase (normal PEQ), because these filters have all of their energy up front and therefore do not impart any additional delay.

However, they are not using FIR filters for phase correction in the sub (non-minimum phase). When FIR filters  are used in this way, the resulting latency is directly tied to the frequency of interests and no fancy new maths can fix that.

I originally suspected the "FIR Drive" was referring to the same DSP module used in each box in the range, and thus could be justified in terms of its presence on the subs - even if they did not use FIR filter capability.

When you refer to the EV processing potentially used for minimum phase, do you mean as correction for the effects of high and low pass crossovers on the sub? Or would it reduce the phase shift inherent in the design reflex subwoofers?

I assume you mean the phase shift caused by normal PEQ, to achieve correction in a similar way to an all pass filter used to correct phase shifts - such as those caused by IIR crossover filters?


I have somewhere interesting learning materials, separate from the MLA stuff. These describe how FIR filter creation  involves calculating numbers of "taps" - which determined unavoidable issues, such as how latency increases as FIR filters are applied to decreasing frequencies.

Unfortunately right now I can't find those papers on the science, theory and practical uses for modern digital filters. However they would have been written some time ago now.

I appreciate this is relatively young technology, that could have been improved in recent years - such as via the "better maths" suggested above.

Yet I had a strong impression that the latency increase as frequency decreases issue with FIR audio filters, was not a characteristic expected to improve as the technology used to create / implement them advanced.

Sadly my understanding is compromised through not using this in any practical way right now. However I expect to in the future, and I find these subjects interesting in their own right!

Sent from my GT-I8160

Logged

Sydney Snyder

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2016, 10:03:57 pm »

Hey, im thinking of getting 2 ZLX 12P's with 2 EKX 12SSP as my new set up. I know those are not the ones you have but from your experience of doing the same brand and same 2 tops with 2 subs set up, how good is it? Too much wiring? too heavy to carry in a SUV?
Logged

Luke Geis

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1049
    • Owner of Endever Music Production's
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2016, 10:43:30 pm »

EV makes great stuff in all of there lines. They do not produce duds. The ZLX and EKX are their lower tier lines and will be about the same in weight and performance to any similarly priced and like marketed product. I think for the money, the EV lines have the best performance to dollar ratio. They are not the best, but they are also not very expensive.
Logged
I don't understand how you can't hear your self

Neil Cox

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 108
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #14 on: April 17, 2017, 08:50:27 am »

EV makes great stuff in all of there lines. They do not produce duds. The ZLX and EKX are their lower tier lines and will be about the same in weight and performance to any similarly priced and like marketed product. I think for the money, the EV lines have the best performance to dollar ratio. They are not the best, but they are also not very expensive.




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Logged

Neil Cox

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 108
Re: Electro Voice ETX-12P review
« Reply #15 on: April 17, 2017, 08:56:12 am »

Hi Luke,

When I first purchased these speakers EV ETX 12p I had problems with clipping but after researching and loads of help in this great forum, I found that I was sending to much of a hot signal to the mix, also I wasn't using the DSP on the back properly I would keep it on 0DB
But after learning about setting gain structure from helpful people in this forum and then using the DSP theses Speakers are Amazing I had a room full with around 90 people in maybe more, it was a charity night, anyway I had nothing but compliments of other performers and even the compare said they are brilliant speakers he said I can here them crystal clear at the rear of the room which was about from the stage 25ft away

I love these speakers they are fantastic once you run them correctly with the gain structure set properly and the DSP.



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Logged
Pages: 1 2 [All]   Go Up
 


Page created in 0.101 seconds with 16 queries.