Hi, I am looking to buy a series of passive direct boxes for the church that I do sound in. The instruments that I have are as listed: 2 keyboards, 1 electric drum set, bass guitar and acoustic guitar (with pickups). The bass guitar is having a mic placed in front of the amp, however the acoustic is running straight from Di through to front of house. The question that I have concerning the setup is whether I should be using active or passive direct boxes. Some have told me that if you are using powered instruments, you should be using passive direct boxes. In that instance, would the guitar be considered as a powered instrument or would I have to use an active direct box for it?Thanks Joel C
Acoustic guitar with a built in preamp would use a passive DI box. Something like an electric guitar with passive pickups you'd want an active DI for.http://www.radialeng.com/di-questions.php
You can use an active DI on anything you want to, including acoustic guitars with built-in preamps.
That's all I ever use. Usually a BSS AR-133.Steve.
The expensive active DI boxes like the Radial J48 have a switching power supply and complete ground lift.
You can use an active DI on anything you want to, including acoustic guitars with built-in preamps. Other than potentially cost, the only downside of active DI boxes is you can't run them backwards in a pinch. Every sound board made in the last 25 years supports phantom power, so the battery issue is no longer a thing.I would do one of two things - either use all active DI boxes for everything - Radial Pro48 probably so everything is standardized, or go with passive for the multichannel stuff - drums and keys (ProD2), and active for all the guitars.
First of all, thank you for your reply. I have one question regarding a previous setup that I had. I originally had an active Di Box (https://www.storedj.com.au/behringer-ultra-di-di20-2-channel-di-box-splitter) running out from the acoustic guitar (with a built in preamp) and then into front of house. It produced a large hiss noise, and I wondered where this was coming from. I then tried plugging the electric keyboard into the active DI and the same result was present. I then concluded that the Di box was broken. Would the hiss have occurred because I did not use a passive Di box instead of the active, because both instruments had built in preamps?
A guitar with a built in preamp or any guitar with a peddle board will work very well with a quality pasive DI. There are others, but any passive DI with a Jensen transformer is a quality DI. I prefer passive because there is less to go wrong on a Sunday morning.
. . . not once have i had a passive one plugged in and thought to myself "this sounds terrible. If only i had an Active DI". . .
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