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Author Topic: Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band  (Read 28614 times)

Keith munger

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Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band
« on: August 01, 2012, 08:01:49 am »

Hello! My name is Keith Munger and my son is the drummer for a metal band. There are four members in the band and they play the typical small clubs both indoors and out. Currently, they are restricted to venues that have have a house PA system because they don't have their own. I am considering purchasing a system for them. Right now our equipment consists of Audix D series drum mics, a 100' 16x4 channel XLR snake and a PV20 Peavey mixer. I am torn between getting powered speakers or going passive. I am leaning towards the powered and really liking the EV Live X series (ELX112P + ELX118P). I am envisioning a total of 4ea ELX112P and 2ea ELX118P. I have concernes that a powered speaker might be "putting all your eggs in one basket". Another concern is...will it be powerful enough for a metal band? Lastly, in venues that have these bands is there generally appropriate 110V power ON STAGE to run this equipment? Might you have any other observations? I am BRAND NEW to Live Sound...so even elementary suggestions are appreciated.
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Jon C Thomas

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Re: Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2012, 11:02:59 am »

Hello! My name is Keith Munger and my son is the drummer for a metal band. There are four members in the band and they play the typical small clubs both indoors and out. Currently, they are restricted to venues that have have a house PA system because they don't have their own. I am considering purchasing a system for them. Right now our equipment consists of Audix D series drum mics, a 100' 16x4 channel XLR snake and a PV20 Peavey mixer. I am torn between getting powered speakers or going passive. I am leaning towards the powered and really liking the EV Live X series (ELX112P + ELX118P). I am envisioning a total of 4ea ELX112P and 2ea ELX118P. I have concernes that a powered speaker might be "putting all your eggs in one basket". Another concern is...will it be powerful enough for a metal band? Lastly, in venues that have these bands is there generally appropriate 110V power ON STAGE to run this equipment? Might you have any other observations? I am BRAND NEW to Live Sound...so even elementary suggestions are appreciated.
A local club has that set up and it gets loud enough for me.
 Active is the way to go IMO and with identical Mains/Monitors you will have backups should one go bad. The processing in active speakers will "help" keep them from blowing... In ear monitors will help keep the kids from blowing out their ears btw.
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Cosmo

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Re: Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band
« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2012, 11:21:11 am »


Hi Keith, welcome to the Forums.  I suspect you are going to get a lot of replies to your post.  I'll chime in here on the active/passive subject by saying that I prefer passive speakers for two reasons: first, good speakers are heavy enough as it is, carry the amplifier separately (many modern amplifiers have DSP built in, often more flexible than the DSP in active spkrs.), and second, if something breaks then having separate components allows you to swap it out with a replacement while the broken part is getting fixed (days or weeks).  There will be many different opinions on this, I'm sure.

As for available power, the short answer is yes, most stages have at least two circuits for the band.  Whether or not those circuits are being shared by the ice machine, jukebox, ceiling fans, or anything else will have to be determined by you.  Personally, I carry a couple of TrippLite power conditioner/voltage regulators with me, one for FOH and one for sensitive equipment on stage.

Best of luck with your son's band.

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If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer.  Let him step to the music he hears, however measured or far away.  - H.D. Thoreau

Tim Perry

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Re: Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band
« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2012, 11:43:38 am »

Keith, just my opinion but with metal low/medium cost actives is not a good choice.

I tried it once and it turned into a full blown fiasco. 

Even low cost JRX or Yamaha passives are way preferable. The actives are good for many things but metal band monitors it not one of them.

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Samuel Rees

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Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band
« Reply #4 on: August 01, 2012, 01:05:08 pm »

...why did it turn into a full blown fiasco? Powered vs unpowered just moves where the amps are.
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Keith munger

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Re: Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band
« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2012, 03:02:04 pm »

...why did it turn into a full blown fiasco? Powered vs unpowered just moves where the amps are.

I think Tim Perry was talking about the band playing Metal music in combination with the EV cabinets I spec'd out. Maybe if I purchased the QSC KW153 (4ea) and the QSC 1000 Sub (2ea). They are twice the price. Are they twice as good?

Thanks for all the input so far (albeit from A to Z)

Cheers.. Keith   
« Last Edit: August 01, 2012, 03:07:41 pm by Keith munger »
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g'bye, Dick Rees

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Re: Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2012, 03:07:35 pm »

I think he was talking about the band playing Metal music in combination with the EV cabinets I spec'd out. Maybe if I purchased the QSC KW153 (4ea) and the QSC 1000 Sub (2ea). They are twice the price. Are they twice as good?

Thanks for all the input so far (albeit from A to Z)

Cheers.. Keith

Those sound like a good idea, but I don't think you're going to power them and the band on a couple of random club circuits........
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Tim Perry

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Re: Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band
« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2012, 03:57:37 pm »

...why did it turn into a full blown fiasco? Powered vs unpowered just moves where the amps are.

I used the actives because half my others had been stolen.

But it a mistake to assume it just moves the amp inside. It's a SMALLER amp regardless of claims.

Now maybe there is some milder form of heavy metal out there that I haven,t encountered but if you want the VOX to be heard above the screaming backline on stage it take some serious power and the K's just goes into limit and/or thermal out.

 
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Per Sovik

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Re: Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band
« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2012, 04:18:11 pm »

I think Tim Perry was talking about the band playing Metal music in combination with the EV cabinets I spec'd out. Maybe if I purchased the QSC KW153 (4ea) and the QSC 1000 Sub (2ea). They are twice the price. Are they twice as good?
"Good" is hard to quantify, the right tool for the job is infinitely better than the wrong tool.
I'd probably go for PRX635 for that more "aggressive" less "refined" sound from 2-4K, but that's just me. However, I want to question why you're going with four tops and two subs. If you want wider coverage, then "maybe", but if I were you, I'd just go 2+2 and think about adding two more subs for that "punch in the guts" kick drum sound if that's the style.
If the tops aren't loud enough or wide enough, do a test with the two you buy first to see how the sound when you splay them to achieve what you want before you go out and buy two more. If you are planning to use the second set of tops for monitors or fills, you might want to have a couple of 12" boxes for that purpose.
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John Penkala

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Re: Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band
« Reply #9 on: August 01, 2012, 04:22:55 pm »

Hello! My name is Keith Munger and my son is the drummer for a metal band. There are four members in the band and they play the typical small clubs both indoors and out. Currently, they are restricted to venues that have have a house PA system because they don't have their own. I am considering purchasing a system for them. Right now our equipment consists of Audix D series drum mics, a 100' 16x4 channel XLR snake and a PV20 Peavey mixer. I am torn between getting powered speakers or going passive. I am leaning towards the powered and really liking the EV Live X series (ELX112P + ELX118P). I am envisioning a total of 4ea ELX112P and 2ea ELX118P. I have concernes that a powered speaker might be "putting all your eggs in one basket". Another concern is...will it be powerful enough for a metal band? Lastly, in venues that have these bands is there generally appropriate 110V power ON STAGE to run this equipment? Might you have any other observations? I am BRAND NEW to Live Sound...so even elementary suggestions are appreciated.


Keith,
       The simplicity of powered speakers makes sense for you. You won't have to set up a processor or limiters, or amplifiers. They should sound decent right out of the box. However, I do recommend buying a decent stereo 31 band eq for tuning. Additionally, I would go with 2 of the QSC KW153's and 2 KW181 subs to start. If I were to buy four of anything it would be subs and not tops at this point. You can always add later. However, I do agree with Tim Perry with his comment on the vocals. The band will have to excersise discipline with their stage volume for even the QSC's to work well. Unfortunately, heavy metal musicians aren't known for that discipline. But there are exceptions. Vocal mic choice will be important. You'll want a mic with a tight pickup pattern as not to pick up as much stage wash.  Audix OM7's are popular but expensive. I would get EV PL80's if you are on a budget.
       If you were more "seasoned", there are some great deals on pro level passive boxes on the used market. Providers and rental houses are selling speakers from EAW, and Turbosound, etc., to make room for newer inventory. However, those speakers do require some experience to deploy properly. Likewise with some of the higher end MI gear like JBL SRX or EV QRX.
       I would also get a copy of Yamaha's sound reinforcement handbook, ASAP! Let us know how you make out!!

JP
       
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Re: Powered vs Passive Spkrs for Live Small Venue Metal Band
« Reply #9 on: August 01, 2012, 04:22:55 pm »


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