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Author Topic: Powered 12" Mains  (Read 2057 times)

Mike Holtzinger

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Powered 12" Mains
« on: July 07, 2018, 03:02:03 pm »

 So I've been searching and lurking as I'm looking to upgrade my Bar band system slowly. I'm currently running JBL MP415's over QSC HPR151i's. I'm powering the Mpro's with a Crown XLS2500 and overall, it sounds pretty good, but we're a 2 guitar classic rock band that gets pretty loud and I'm right on the edge of losing clarity in the mid to high range. I need more headroom.
 Of course, my system isn't ideally matched, but it actually sounds pretty good. Over the years, I've come to realise that I don't need as much low end as I thought I did and used to use. My old system had SR 4719 double 18" subs and now, I'm doing the same gigs with the HPR151's ( :o).

 So my plan is to slowly upgrade the system starting with powered tops so I can lose the amp.
 
 I want more clean headroom in the mids than I'm currently getting. Problem is I've found that there are a million opinions on speakers and no real solid evidence that QSCvsJBLvsEVvsRCFetc...any one is better than the other. Everybody has favorites or boxes that they're comfortable with.

 The specs on my JBL MPro are 57hz-20k (I'm HPF'd at 80 on the amp)- 99dB sensitivity and a max SPL of 130dB...not bad?

 So if I use this as the benchmark that I need to exceed then is there anything in the Mid price range that's going to do this?
 Another reason for wanting to change mains is size. The MP415's aren't small or light and as I can haul everything including my guitar rig in my SUV, every inch counts so a smaller box is a real consideration!

 In summary, I'm looking for a smaller powered 12" top that will outperform the MP415. What are the contenders?
 
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Ben Ballard

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Re: Powered 12" Mains
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2018, 03:14:32 pm »

Q
« Last Edit: July 07, 2018, 03:30:58 pm by Ben Ballard »
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Dave Garoutte

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Re: Powered 12" Mains
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2018, 03:24:31 pm »

Yamaha DXR 10 or 12 or DSR 112.
IMO, nicer mids than QSC.  Vocals very clear.
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Scott Holtzman

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Re: Powered 12" Mains
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2018, 03:27:55 pm »

Qsc K12.2 may be way to loud for your use, but a fantastic piece of equipment. It could be out of your price range aswell. However, definitely for your requirements a QSC K12.2 would be great.

Sent from my Moto G (5) using Tapatalk

Is this a joke.  The K12.2 can't keep up with what he has now.

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Gordon Brinton

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Re: Powered 12" Mains
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2018, 03:28:47 pm »

My DSR112's remain clean when I push them hard. I am not sure how loud they can get, (all SPL specs are BS,) but I've done lots of loud rock bands in bars and don't ever recall wanting to "back it off" because it sounded ugly.

FYI, Yamaha has a new line coming out soon and maybe the DSR's will drop in price. (Current street price is around $750 US.)
« Last Edit: July 07, 2018, 03:32:01 pm by Gordon Brinton »
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Luke Geis

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Re: Powered 12" Mains
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2018, 04:05:57 pm »

Well..... In my experience, you have a PA that should do fine for Bar type scenario's. Venture outside and you will not be as happy unless you only care about getting sound out to about 25'. I will attempt to break it down for you.

130db peak means at best and only perhaps for a few seconds. The amp you have will produce roughly 440 watts at 8 ohms. Your speaker is rated for 350 watts RMS, 700 watts program and 1400 watts peak. You are for all intents and purposes powering the speaker at the RMS rating. This means you can only achieve a theoretical peak SPL of about 124-125db when the amp is clipping. This is again an at best number. In reality you may only actually be able to achieve a real world SPL of about 115db. This SPL is factored at 3.28' ( 1 meter ) and does not consider inverse square law losses. So at 6.5' ( 2 meters ) you will loose another 6db and at 13' ( 4 meters ) you will loose yet another 6db and at 26' a total loss of 18db, putting you at around 97db at 26' away from the speakers. You would loose another 6db getting out to around 50'.

The typical rock band sets around 110db - 100db at typical listening distances of stage front to around 25' away. So you need a PA that can at least beat those numbers. Yours is right there and should just do the task. Keep in mind that 3db is minute and will not make or break the gig. Also when indoors ( such as at a bar ) the energy from the PA doesn't follow the inverse square law as much. You retain some energy due to reflections and of course boundary loading. Set a speaker next to a wall and you pretty much gain 3db from everything 250hz and below. You would likely find more use from your current PA if it was for vocal only support. That will help free up headroom and help optimize its functionality for beating the rest of the band.

My general rule is that any speaker capable of 135db peak SPL should be loud enough to do just about any gig you can put it on. Following the math from above, if you are actually capable of acquiring 135db, you would need to reduce that output by -16db to come to a real world capable SPL. This would put you at roughly 120db at 3.28' ( again 1 meter ). This means that by the time you get to 50' away from the PA you would have lost 24db to the inverse square law and would be left with about a 96db real world SPL. Now of that 16db we initially took away, 6db of that is factored for safety and headroom. This means that you could have up to another 3-6db more in potential output. In essence, you should be able to acquire roughly 100db at a distance of around 50'. This is pretty loud and I would say loud enough to do most of the gigs that we are commissioned to do where a PA on sticks is deployed. Keep in mind that the inverse square law begins to help as we get further away. At 100' for instance, we should still be able to acquire roughly 90db. This is loud enough to be over the typical conversation level.

That being said, this makes just about any modern self powered speaker in the $700 range a viable option. Almost all major manufacturers are offering up models at that price point that boast those numbers. There is a caveat to that. Those numbers are created by using very particular test criterion that make the numbers less than truthful. It is only simply a performance indicator. This is why we subtract 16db away from it. The real world output is what we care about. Most any powered speaker ( or passive ) that is stated as producing 135db or more should be adequate for most any situation.

Which one is the best option? I like JBL, EV and RCF pretty much in that order. QSC is fine too, but not my go to choice. The JBL PRX and especially the SRX line is a serious speaker. The EV offerings all perform well and have the benefit of being a little more affordable. RCF is pricier, but performs really well and sounds great. The magic number seems to be $700 though. Any speaker that costs that much and states a peak SPL of 135db will perform really well for you. The sound quality gap starts to shrink at that point too. Any speaker at or above that price point sounds pretty darn good. Good enough that you can make them work. I think the QSC offerings are the worst sounding of the bunch, but others love it.
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Mal Brown

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Re: Powered 12" Mains
« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2018, 04:30:18 pm »

Id be in the QSC camp.  Been running K10s and 12s and 181 subs for ages never had a failure.  Added a set of 153s.  Tried PRX 612s and they were a complete disaster for me. 

I have a house curve that sounds fine to my ear.  It is not as good as my Renkus/EAW rig but those rigs have remarkably different levels of investment and intended use...

If you run the QSCs into the limiters they get harsh but... frankly if you are running them that hard it is an indication that you are probably running over expectations...  this is why A, B and C rigs exist...

To me the reliability aspect is a huge part of ROI.   QSc has it in spades and will stand behind it for 6 years.  Says something of the design and probably the aggressive limiter...

I will say, the only time I ran into the limiters was with 4 in horizontal splay (not their best use) doing FOH for an AC/DC tribute band.  Should have had the A rig for that one but the budget said no crew.  The QSC can be a 1 guy lug and lift.  My A rig is not...
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Paul G. OBrien

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Re: Powered 12" Mains
« Reply #7 on: July 07, 2018, 05:26:23 pm »

I'm currently running JBL MP415's over QSC HPR151i's. I'm powering the Mpro's with a Crown XLS2500 and overall, it sounds pretty good, but we're a 2 guitar classic rock band that gets pretty loud and I'm right on the edge of losing clarity in the mid to high range. I need more headroom.

You want mains with a larger Comp driver, coming from the SR series I bet that is what you are missing. The Yamaha DSR has the largest comp of all the offereings in that price bracket, I think that along with some excellent processing delivers the results they known for around here. Other options that may best that performance would be the SRX8XX powered poxes or maybe the RCF 7XX series both of which have 2" exit comps.
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jesseweiss

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Re: Powered 12" Mains
« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2018, 05:52:30 pm »

Well..... In my experience, you have a PA that should do fine for Bar type scenario's. Venture outside and you will not be as happy unless you only care about getting sound out to about 25'. I will attempt to break it down for you.

130db peak means at best and only perhaps for a few seconds. The amp you have will produce roughly 440 watts at 8 ohms. Your speaker is rated for 350 watts RMS, 700 watts program and 1400 watts peak. You are for all intents and purposes powering the speaker at the RMS rating. This means you can only achieve a theoretical peak SPL of about 124-125db when the amp is clipping. This is again an at best number. In reality you may only actually be able to achieve a real world SPL of about 115db. This SPL is factored at 3.28' ( 1 meter ) and does not consider inverse square law losses. So at 6.5' ( 2 meters ) you will loose another 6db and at 13' ( 4 meters ) you will loose yet another 6db and at 26' a total loss of 18db, putting you at around 97db at 26' away from the speakers. You would loose another 6db getting out to around 50'.

The typical rock band sets around 110db - 100db at typical listening distances of stage front to around 25' away. So you need a PA that can at least beat those numbers. Yours is right there and should just do the task. Keep in mind that 3db is minute and will not make or break the gig. Also when indoors ( such as at a bar ) the energy from the PA doesn't follow the inverse square law as much. You retain some energy due to reflections and of course boundary loading. Set a speaker next to a wall and you pretty much gain 3db from everything 250hz and below. You would likely find more use from your current PA if it was for vocal only support. That will help free up headroom and help optimize its functionality for beating the rest of the band.

My general rule is that any speaker capable of 135db peak SPL should be loud enough to do just about any gig you can put it on. Following the math from above, if you are actually capable of acquiring 135db, you would need to reduce that output by -16db to come to a real world capable SPL. This would put you at roughly 120db at 3.28' ( again 1 meter ). This means that by the time you get to 50' away from the PA you would have lost 24db to the inverse square law and would be left with about a 96db real world SPL. Now of that 16db we initially took away, 6db of that is factored for safety and headroom. This means that you could have up to another 3-6db more in potential output. In essence, you should be able to acquire roughly 100db at a distance of around 50'. This is pretty loud and I would say loud enough to do most of the gigs that we are commissioned to do where a PA on sticks is deployed. Keep in mind that the inverse square law begins to help as we get further away. At 100' for instance, we should still be able to acquire roughly 90db. This is loud enough to be over the typical conversation level.

That being said, this makes just about any modern self powered speaker in the $700 range a viable option. Almost all major manufacturers are offering up models at that price point that boast those numbers. There is a caveat to that. Those numbers are created by using very particular test criterion that make the numbers less than truthful. It is only simply a performance indicator. This is why we subtract 16db away from it. The real world output is what we care about. Most any powered speaker ( or passive ) that is stated as producing 135db or more should be adequate for most any situation.

Which one is the best option? I like JBL, EV and RCF pretty much in that order. QSC is fine too, but not my go to choice. The JBL PRX and especially the SRX line is a serious speaker. The EV offerings all perform well and have the benefit of being a little more affordable. RCF is pricier, but performs really well and sounds great. The magic number seems to be $700 though. Any speaker that costs that much and states a peak SPL of 135db will perform really well for you. The sound quality gap starts to shrink at that point too. Any speaker at or above that price point sounds pretty darn good. Good enough that you can make them work. I think the QSC offerings are the worst sounding of the bunch, but others love it.
Great info and super helpful post for those of us with less technical knowledge.
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Scott Holtzman

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Re: Powered 12" Mains
« Reply #9 on: July 07, 2018, 06:48:40 pm »

Id be in the QSC camp.  Been running K10s and 12s and 181 subs for ages never had a failure.  Added a set of 153s.  Tried PRX 612s and they were a complete disaster for me. 

I have a house curve that sounds fine to my ear.  It is not as good as my Renkus/EAW rig but those rigs have remarkably different levels of investment and intended use...

If you run the QSCs into the limiters they get harsh but... frankly if you are running them that hard it is an indication that you are probably running over expectations...  this is why A, B and C rigs exist...

To me the reliability aspect is a huge part of ROI.   QSc has it in spades and will stand behind it for 6 years.  Says something of the design and probably the aggressive limiter...

I will say, the only time I ran into the limiters was with 4 in horizontal splay (not their best use) doing FOH for an AC/DC tribute band.  Should have had the A rig for that one but the budget said no crew.  The QSC can be a 1 guy lug and lift.  My A rig is not...

THe Kx.2 is an unknown on the reliability right now.  We have a huge inventory of KW and HPR and it has been a workhorse.  With that said, I would buy DSR's if I had to do it all over again.
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Scott AKA "Skyking" Holtzman
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