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Author Topic: Active Line Array for Working Band  (Read 49403 times)

steve cook

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Active Line Array for Working Band
« on: February 20, 2010, 06:33:08 am »

Hiya---I've pretty much gotten out of the sound end of things, and been playing a lot more.  I've started with a band who's a great bunch of guys, probably the best I've ever played with.  Looking at upgrading the PA for outdoor shows.

Currently, we're using the Bose on sticks for the places we play, with a pair of 18's to provide some real low end.  I never have to mic my guitar cab, and neither does the bass player.  Drums are triggered thru an Alesis D4, so the set up is simple, and we don't even bother having a FOH engineer or wedges.  It works.

But---the summer will be a bunch of outdoor gigs.  Street dances, county fairs, etc.  The Bose won't cut it.  They know it.

Most of the gigs this summer will be 200-500 people, and the only time we go 'huge' is a 2 day event for 1000-1500 people.  We're thinking of contracting that out to someone, so our gear doesn't get trashed----they tell me a LOT of beer gets sold at that one----

First thought was to roll with an EV QRX system.  I love those boxes.  But the directivity of them makes me shy away.  Now we're looking at line arrays, and that really seems to be the smart money.  Active boxes would be best, to keep things simple, and I figure 2, maybe 3 boxes per side.  On subs, I've never heard anything active that I've liked.

So far, everyone has been talking about the db technologies stuff.  We're supposed to demo some active wedges next week, but since I live in Iowa, it's not too often I hear anything that's new and fresh.

Experience, opinions, etc?  There's a pretty strong cash reserve, but I doubt I can talk these guys into a Meyer rig.
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Evan Kirkendall

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Re: Active Line Array for Working Band
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2010, 06:44:53 am »

200-500 people?

Get a point source system. The EV QRX stuff will work a lot better then 2-3 active "line array" boxes.



Evan
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steve cook

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Re: Active Line Array for Working Band
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2010, 06:49:37 am »

Okay.  Why?  
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TJ (Tom) Cornish

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Re: Active Line Array for Working Band
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2010, 08:00:51 am »

steve cook wrote on Sat, 20 February 2010 05:49

Okay.  Why?  


Back at you - Why a line array?

True line arrays don't work better than point sources until you have more modules per side than you are talking about.  The pattern control comes from the length of the array - the longer the line, the lower in frequency you have some pattern control.  A 2 or 3 box array isn't going to have any better pattern control than a box with a horn.  

If you want a modular system giving you some vertical coverage control that is appropriate for 200-500 people, read up on EAW JFL speakers and JBL VRX speakers.  These are "line array shaped" and designed to work from 1-4 boxes per side, but not truly line arrays.  

Failing that, a line array is going to be a lot of expense and setup time for not a lot of benefit compared to something else.  There are many point source systems that can do 200-500 people very well for much less money.
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Steve Payne

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Re: Active Line Array for Working Band
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2010, 09:27:49 am »

A line array is a good tool for the right application.
Not only do you need a suitable length to get good performance from a line array, you need to fly them.  Anything less is a compromise.  You will get much better performance from a good point source system for your application.
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steve

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John Halliburton

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Re: Active Line Array for Working Band
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2010, 10:04:36 am »

TJ (Tom) Cornish wrote on Sat, 20 February 2010 07:00

steve cook wrote on Sat, 20 February 2010 05:49

Okay.  Why?  


Back at you - Why a line array?

True line arrays don't work better than point sources until you have more modules per side than you are talking about.


Bad choice of words.  They work differently, not better.  There are situations where one system is better suited than the other.

To the OP-Evan is right on the money.  If not the QRX boxes, the VRX and JFL Tom referred to are options, also Jeff's JTR line,as well as Yorkville's U15, Danley Sound Labs SH46, SH95, SH60, etc.  Renkus Heinz coentrant series, the ST/STX gear is another possiblility.  

For the size gigs you describe, 2-4 boxes with subs sounds like a reasonable set up, and hiring out for that larger outdoor gig makes a lot of sense.

Best regards,

John
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Jonathan 'JP' Peirce

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Re: Active Line Array for Working Band
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2010, 10:34:56 am »

steve cook wrote on Sat, 20 February 2010 06:33

Drums are triggered thru an Alesis D4,

Why worry about the PA when you're putting this crap into it?
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Jonathan 'JP' Peirce
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steve cook

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Re: Active Line Array for Working Band
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2010, 11:57:12 am »

Ha ha, I just play the guitar.  I'll agree, the drum system he's running sure does take the 'life' out of the drums.

What would you suggest as an upgrade?  It sure is nice not having a ton of open mics to set up.
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Mike Pyle

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Re: Active Line Array for Working Band
« Reply #8 on: February 20, 2010, 12:13:20 pm »

Steve,

The entire advantage of a line array is that it evens out the sound level across a deeper area, but this only works if the line of cabinets is long enough. The DVAT4 is a great little box, but with just two a side you would only have about 125 dB of output and no greater pattern control than a point source box.

For less money, you could run two EV ZXA5/60s a side and easily cover 500 outdoors with decent subs.
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Mike Pyle
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Active Line Array for Working Band
« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2010, 12:17:00 pm »

Excuse me, but this forum is for full time working professionals.  The needs for a band doing it's own sound don't remotely belong in the Classic LAB
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