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Author Topic: EV ZX5's really usable for monitors?  (Read 4623 times)

Paul Lea

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EV ZX5's really usable for monitors?
« on: November 29, 2008, 02:42:01 pm »

I am down to the wire for replacing my ageing inventory of EV FM1502ER's and FM1202ER's for this coming season workload. They are all reconed and ready for sale. They just don't have the output to handle some of the larger shows we are getting now.

We mainly do mid-sized festival work. We also work with some "A" list Christian artists (Mandisa, Mark Schultz, Chris Rice, Natalie Grant, etc.) and occasionally work with "B" list and entry level "A" list rock/country acts (think Great White, .38 special, Grand Funk Railroad).

We need a new monitor and preferably something that can be used as a utility box. We already have the monitor racks configured and the new cabinets would be bi-amped, 650 watts to the lows, 150 watts to the highs using Crown XS900's and XS4300's.

Being that we have a large EV Phoenix rig, the ZX5 caught my attention since it uses the same woofer and a single ND2 driver. Plus it's light!

I came across a blowout of some ZX5's for around 550.00 each. Seems like a good deal but should I be concerned about the single 1" driver? Will they put out in the situations listed above? If someone is asking for bi-amped monitors with a 2" horn is this a monitor that I can try to convince them is a usable cabinet? I have not had an issue withe the Phoenix but that is because it uses the dual ND2 setup. Everyone that has used it walks away saying they loved the rig.

If they are deemed usable, would the 60x60 or the 90x50 be the better choice? I am leaning toward the 60x60 so I can control the stage was a bit more and put two per side out in wide rooms. Let me know if i am out of line in my thinking.

Last thing, I can also get a bunch of the Peavey QW Monitors's for about the same price. Since it has a 2" exit horn, maybe that would be more "rider friendly" even though it says peavey but is an industry standard config.? Of course they are almost twice the weight at 80 pounds.

I am at a loss, I wish I had the work to justify the 1500.00 each on real monitors. Whatever I get is going to have to work for the next 2-3 years so I only want to have to buy once.

I would love to hear what you all have to say since they have been out and in use for a while now. I have read all the back posts I can find but I have not run across anyone trying to use them in the situations I would be needing them for.

Any more direction is truly appreciated from end users.
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Paul Lea

Owner - Midwest Sound and Production, LLC

John P Farrell

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Re: EV ZX5's really usable for monitors?
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2008, 03:12:12 pm »

Hey Paul,

I do not have experience with the EV boxes in question.  However, I have provided monitor rigs for Grand Funk and .38 Special (and hundreds of other acts) with 12"/1" proprietary wedges and have had no complaints.  Ours are loaded with a JBL 2206 for the low and a 2426H for the high.  We do feed them quite a bit more power than you are using right now (1200w/650w) and they have been pushed to their limit but no one has refused them or complained yet.  I've found that if the rest of the rig is happening and the wedges are properly powered/crossed over/etc 90% of ME's/Bands I deal with won't be bothered if there is a 1" instead of a 2".  

Hope this helps,

JF
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Paul Lea

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Re: EV ZX5's really usable for monitors?
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2008, 03:36:10 pm »

Cool.  I am thinking about upping the power to the 15" of whatever I get to around 1000 watts and 250'ish to the highs to get some headroom since that is the program rating for either of those boxes.

Thanks for the opinion, appreciate it.
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Paul Lea

Owner - Midwest Sound and Production, LLC

Rick Powell

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Re: EV ZX5's really usable for monitors?
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2008, 06:25:04 pm »

If you power the ZX5's as monitors with 1000 w/250w, they are capable of tearing your head off, especially with the 60 degree pattern.
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Rick Powell
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Tom Young

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Re: EV ZX5's really usable for monitors?
« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2008, 06:51:13 pm »

Just to be clear (and perhaps this is what you meant):

The Zx5 comes in either a 90x50 or a 60x60 version, or coverage pattern. In their brochure they do not indicate that the 60x60 has greater output. I would tend to go with the 60x60 as far as reducing leakage on the stage, at least at higher frequencies.

To the OP:
I have installed Zx5's in a very loud African-American gospel church and they are deployed in both the primary FOH clusters and as stage monitors. They have worked very well but partly because I measured and applied DSP to them.

But it is impossible to say with certainty that these will do what you need. I suggest you try a few out and if they work.... get more. If not, use them for lighter duty (an install ?) and move up higher.
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Tom Young
Electroacoustic Design Services
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A Thomas Lamb

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Re: EV ZX5's really usable for monitors?
« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2008, 06:53:15 pm »

They are a great box especially at that price. I still have several in our inventory. However I have gotten rid of allot of them and replaced the with EV QRX boxes. I didn't ditch them because I though they weren't up to snuff. I did it because I wanted to put something that I felt 99% of my client would  not have a problem with. Wood not plastic and a larger horn. Also at this point in our business I could not afford to keep the extra boxes around or I would have (btw somehow those before me had ordered 6 of them in white and they had to go regardless) If I had it to do over again I would have done it a little different. I would have purchased the 12" box instead of the 15" but I still would have swapped them for what I consider to be a more durable box. I do love the sound of the ZX box and still use them they will knock your sox off with enough power and they do come in at the right weight in comparison. Also it only matters as long as who you are working with will accept them. If I was the BE I would but I know what they will do! Do they fit with what you are doing? I will say this I will take them over a Phoenix wedge any day!! Good luck and happy wedging!
T
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Thomas Lamb
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Paul Lea

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Re: EV ZX5's really usable for monitors?
« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2008, 09:40:25 am »

Wow, the ZX5 over a phoenix wedge.  I have not owned the Phoenix wedges, I own the Phoenix tops and they put out, I love them.  I wondered if the Phoenix wedges would have a tendency to be top end heavy with the dual horn setup.

I think I may try a pair of the of the ZX's, now I just have to decide if I want the 12" or the 15".

I have read on these forums and it seems some people feel that 12" is the way to go and some feel 15" is the one size to own if you want matching inventory.

Since these are going to be a dual purpose box, a 15" seems to make more sense? These will be used with a dual 18" sub.

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Paul Lea

Owner - Midwest Sound and Production, LLC

Tom Young

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Re: EV ZX5's really usable for monitors?
« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2008, 10:23:51 am »

"Wow, the ZX5 over a phoenix wedge. I have not owned the Phoenix wedges, I own the Phoenix tops and they put out, I love them. I wondered if the Phoenix wedges would have a tendency to be top end heavy with the dual horn setup."

Do you really think a loudspeaker designer would design a product with exagerated HF response ? The sole reason for dual drivers in this application is increased power handling. Look at the EV frequency response graph:

index.php/fa/19304/0/

"I think I may try a pair of the of the ZX's, now I just have to decide if I want the 12" or the 15". ..... I have read on these forums and it seems some people feel that 12" is the way to go and some feel 15" is the one size to own if you want matching inventory."

Many people, including myself, prefer 12" cones in multiway systems where this driver crosses over into the HF driver. With such a transition the 12's simply sound better. There are exceptions but usually these are systems that are actively processed such as Meyer's CQ-series. Having said that, the Zx5 sounds very good considering it uses a 15".

I do not know (yet) how it compares to the Zx3 as far as the woofer (and its relationship to the HF driver) issue.

"Since these are going to be a dual purpose box, a 15" seems to make more sense? These will be used with a dual 18" sub."

15" certainly makes sense if these are to be used (at times) as a wedge with drums and bass sent through them. They also make sense when used as FOH for gigs where subs are not being used. In other words: they handle more low end.
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Tom Young
Electroacoustic Design Services
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A Thomas Lamb

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Re: EV ZX5's really usable for monitors?
« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2008, 10:37:21 am »

I do not care for how the Phoenix sound to me they are a little harsh. Which with proper tuning can be helped.  My biggest thing however is the horn pattern the 12's are 90x45 and 15"s are 90x40 and are not rotatable to me it shoots to high and to low and is not wide enough in most of my situations. Im sure other might like or prefer this pattern but Im not one of them. The ZX in a 60x60 is a great box especially at the price you have got.
T
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Thomas Lamb
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Paul Lea

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Re: EV ZX5's really usable for monitors?
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2008, 10:11:58 am »

Well, we tried the ZX3 and it performed well but with the Crown XS900 on the lows and the Crown XS4300 on the highs, the lows ran out of gas. The amp went into clip way to soon.  We strapped a Peavey CS4080 to the lows and they perked right up.

After messing with it for 2 days, I determined that I really need to get beefier amps to do them right.  

That being said, the ZXa5 is on the way from EV for me to demo.  Hopefully, I will have it tomorrow.  Seems like it might be the ticket, 1250 watts, still pretty light.

Anyone using them and liking them or not?
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Paul Lea

Owner - Midwest Sound and Production, LLC
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