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Author Topic: DJ speakers  (Read 1749 times)

Joshua Buentello

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DJ speakers
« on: December 21, 2018, 10:55:21 am »

 Hello Im looking into some speakers to start DJ'ing and I'm particularly interested in the brand EAW. I own a EAW MX250, MX800i, MX8600 processor, 4 EAW LA325 cabinets along with 4 EAW BH760's and they sound incredible. But I was told that the LA325 are a short throw speaker and the coverage and distance isn't all that great for a large event. A friend of mine mentioned that the KF760 series would be a better choice for tops to compliment my lows and would give me a larger distance of coverage and throw. I looked at pricing for the KF760's and almost had a heart attack lol! plus the KF760's were massive and looked to weigh in at almost the same as my lows. I was looking around and found these models of KF series: KF850/850EF/850T/850z can anyone tell me what is the difference between these models? because theres not much info out there explaining the differences and if so which would go good with my lows, Thanks.
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2018, 01:05:51 pm »

The KF760 is a line array module and is not meant to be used singly or in small numbers (too few to be a "line" is a "dash" ;) )

The differences between the models of KF850?  Mostly transducers (different drivers) and some changes to the mid horn (IIRC).  They are not interchangeable, i.e. you can't use KF850T mixed with KF850z (Z is the final version of the 850).

We have a dozen KF850EF and they don't go out much.  Big, heavy, requires the EAW UX8800 processor (we still use the MX series) to preform at their best.  I think you'd be better served with KF650 - smaller and lighter than an 850 but still louder than the LA series you have now.
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Taylor Hall

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2018, 02:18:40 pm »

If you're getting into a mobile DJ setup, I'd recommend looking into their self-powered Radius lineup. Way fewer moving parts and much easier to setup and strike.
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William Schnake

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2018, 09:46:13 pm »

If you're getting into a mobile DJ setup, I'd recommend looking into their self-powered Radius lineup. Way fewer moving parts and much easier to setup and strike.

+1  We own both the Radius and the KF850ef speakers.  If I was a dj and I am not, I would definitely look into the Radius system.  If you are looking at a line-array the RSX802L is an amazing value for the price. 

Bill
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Luke Geis

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2018, 12:01:26 am »

There is no such thing as " throw " in terms of a speaker. The LA325's are a 90* X 70* box and that spec ONLY applies to the highs and part of the mids. This spec is par for the course with just about 90% of all speakers in the open market.

Now the LA325 is about the heaviest box known to man and is a widow maker to move and set up. So it is beneficial to find a replacement only to save your life. Aside from that, the box is fine ( I hate the things and they sound mediocre at best to me, but honestly they perform well for most ). I think any other $700 plus 12" speaker will spank those things and make them cry like a baby. If you want low end, buy a sub and you will still have more room and more thump than a pair of those beasts can produce.

The LA325's are just not great performers when scaled against modern self-powered offerings of roughly the same cost. You could sell those and get a much better speaker without spending a dollar almost!!!!

Forget about all the hype, your basic Yamaha DSR, JBL SRX, EV ETX, QSC K12.2, and similar units are truly the bee's knee's these days and will do the job very well. The older  ( now discontinued ) beast of yesteryear are just not viable anymore. They sound ok at best but require so much work and heavy lifting to get there.
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Chris Grimshaw

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2018, 01:01:00 pm »

Now the LA325 is about the heaviest box known to man and is a widow maker to move and set up. So it is beneficial to find a replacement only to save your life. Aside from that, the box is fine ( I hate the things and they sound mediocre at best to me, but honestly they perform well for most ). I think any other $700 plus 12" speaker will spank those things and make them cry like a baby. If you want low end, buy a sub and you will still have more room and more thump than a pair of those beasts can produce.


Just to make sure, I looked up the EAW LA325. 2x 15"s, 2x 7"s, 2x 2" HF on some kind of compression driver combiner thingy.
Seems to me like those ought to eat any 1x12" plastic box, especially if you went to bi-amped operation on the big cabinets - More cone area, more efficiency, more power handling.
At 77kg, I can see why you'd say they're heavy. Not impossible to move around, but a 2-man job to lift on top of some subs for sure.

FWIW, there was recently a shoot-out between some old Nexo Alpha and some of Nexo's newer offerings at a venue I used to work at. They're still running the Alpha - apparently the beasts of yesteryear still have some grunt.

Chris
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Luke Geis

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2018, 03:00:03 pm »

The LA325 isn't really a powerhouse at a 133db max SPL, the only driver in it worth anything is the CD and even in Bi-amp mode, there is really no improvement in performance. It's not that they're a bad box, but you really can get about the same mileage out of modern 12" boxes. The specs state =/-3db down to 50hz and up to 20khz. Most all 12" models these days are going down around 50hz. JBL SRX states 48hz-20khz for its +/-3db, QSC K12.2 = 50hz-20khz +/-6db, and EV ETX 12P = 55hz-20khz. All these options get just as loud and get basically just as low, require NO external processing and are self-powered.

The LA325 is perhaps more efficient, but it's a 3-way box, so it better be. Its only rated for 600 watts in full range mode and in Bi-amp its 600 watts for the hi/mids and 1000 watts for the lows, so it doesn't handle more wattage than any other speaker. It's basically a 133db peak box with a few db more room in the low end if Bi-amped. If you take the JBL SRX 835, it gets 137db max SPL and goes from 41hz-20khz +/-3db and it's only a single 15" 3-way box and it weighs 85lbs.

Tick for tack in performance, all these boxes are the same. The LA325 will have a little more low-end oomph due to having 2 X 15" drivers, but if linear is the game??? The heaviest 12" in this bunch weighs all of 60lbs. The LA325 weighs in at a whopping 170lbs!!!!!

I had some Alpha Nexo's in a venue I managed for a while. They are a nice speaker, HEAVY AS BALLS, but sound good and can rip your head off. I wouldn't put them in the same category as the LA325 or single 12" offerings. The Alpha series was only just recently discontinued really and is still supported by NEXO. Great box if properly installed and set up.
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Chris Grimshaw

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #7 on: December 22, 2018, 06:49:41 pm »

It's not that they're a bad box, but you really can get about the same mileage out of modern 12" boxes.

Luke,
Perhaps you missed my article on this very subject: https://www.prosoundweb.com/channels/live-sound/spec-wars-looking-inside-loudspeaker-spl-specifications/

The EAW specs are, I suspect, pretty honest. The SPL ratings on most modern speakers are closer to fairytales.

The way to find out for sure would be to do a side-by-side comparison. I'd bet money on the EAWs in a bi-amped configuration cheerfully annihilating all but the very top-end 12" speakers.

Chris
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Luke Geis

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2018, 08:04:23 pm »

I understand all that, believe me, and I have read it. And I am very much aware that the specs stated by most Vendors are unrealistic. I used to work with the LA325's in two different venues and another pair for a live sound company. I have some good experience with the LA series as I have also owned a set of LA212's and another venue I managed had a set of LA215's for monitors. There is nothing about the LA series that made me want them and even the 325's didn't really give me the warm and fuzzies. I don't recall the LA325's giving me any more usable SPL than any of my current inventory either. I never measured, but I have used some recently and they are just average sounding. Not great, not bad, just good or at least good enough. They certainly weren't any louder within reason either. 

All the BS numbers aside, the modern pack of powered and passive units perform rather well. My only real point being, that going with a modern 12" and complimentary sub will shave a TON of weight, will be easier to set up ( no need for risers ) and not be a two-person job.
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2018, 08:50:36 pm »

I understand all that, believe me, and I have read it. And I am very much aware that the specs stated by most Vendors are unrealistic. I used to work with the LA325's in two different venues and another pair for a live sound company. I have some good experience with the LA series as I have also owned a set of LA212's and another venue I managed had a set of LA215's for monitors. There is nothing about the LA series that made me want them and even the 325's didn't really give me the warm and fuzzies. I don't recall the LA325's giving me any more usable SPL than any of my current inventory either. I never measured, but I have used some recently and they are just average sounding. Not great, not bad, just good or at least good enough. They certainly weren't any louder within reason either. 

All the BS numbers aside, the modern pack of powered and passive units perform rather well. My only real point being, that going with a modern 12" and complimentary sub will shave a TON of weight, will be easier to set up ( no need for risers ) and not be a two-person job.

I figured the OP wanted to stay in the EAW family and purchase used gear.  The KF650 won't go as low as an LA325 (in singles, anyway) but it will have better pattern control. The 650ef weighs 140 lbs (64kg), has +3 or so greater peak output, long term is about the same as the 165 lb LA325.

I agree that the "easy button" is for Joshua to re-home the LA325s and replace with SRX835sp.  Real world long term output is about the same as either EAW with half the weight.  Since he has 4 BH760 I don't think weight is an issue for him.

Haven't heard the Radius so can't comment except the RSX126/129 look interesting with their 12" LF section and size/weight.

Joshua, what is a "large event"?
« Last Edit: December 22, 2018, 09:07:33 pm by Tim McCulloch »
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"Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possible can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something."  - Kurt Vonnegut

Josh Billings

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #10 on: December 24, 2018, 05:59:44 pm »

The LA325 is a beautiful sounding box (one of my favorites from over the years), but it doesn't get very loud BUT if it gets loud enough for you, in the venues you work at...then I say keep it. It'll sound better than the 850ef for SURE. The 650Z on an 8800 processor is the next step up in the EAW line for 90% of people. You should notice a marked improvement going to those boxes (probably 2 per side). It's not gonna be cheap though.

If you're open to venturing outside the EAW range, try Community SLS960 / SLS980 boxes. They're old, but sounded great last I remember.

Josh Billings

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brian maddox

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #11 on: December 24, 2018, 10:26:04 pm »

The LA325 is a beautiful sounding box (one of my favorites from over the years), but it doesn't get very loud BUT if it gets loud enough for you, in the venues you work at...then I say keep it. It'll sound better than the 850ef for SURE....

Josh Billings

I'm not here to muddy the waters, but i have to humbly disagree.  ish...

Basically, the LA325 and the KF850* are such wildly different beasts that they can't really be compared.  The LA is a "near-field" box and as such can sound quite good "closeup".  The KF850s don't even come together until you're about 50' feet away from them.  They also take a LOT more power, and get a LOT louder IME.  Just two different things.

I do think the 650s are worth looking at.  I always found them easier to manhandle than the the 325s mostly because they have real handles and such.  And they can certainly be made to sound quite good with the right processing and power.

I'm with Luke in that i'm just not that big a 325 fan.  They LOOK like they should be a lot more impressive than they actually are.  And they FEEL heavier than they actually are....
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Steve Ferreira

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #12 on: December 28, 2018, 11:43:52 am »



Haven't heard the Radius so can't comment except the RSX126/129 look interesting with their 12" LF section and size/weight.

Joshua, what is a "large event"?

I know someone who has the RSX129s and they swear these are some great boxes for multiple types of events. I have been trying to “borrow” a system to try out myself as I’m still looking at possibly moving my older SRX 725/728 rig.

I used to own LA215s and whatever the single 18” sub was that accompanied them. I also used the LA325s a bunch of times. They were good boxes at the time but equipment has come such a long way in the last 15-20 years. The LA series sounded decent but there are better options out there now with more power handling, more efficient and half the weight.
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Joshua Buentello

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Re: DJ speakers
« Reply #13 on: January 25, 2019, 01:09:06 pm »

I figured the OP wanted to stay in the EAW family and purchase used gear.  The KF650 won't go as low as an LA325 (in singles, anyway) but it will have better pattern control. The 650ef weighs 140 lbs (64kg), has +3 or so greater peak output, long term is about the same as the 165 lb LA325.

I agree that the "easy button" is for Joshua to re-home the LA325s and replace with SRX835sp.  Real world long term output is about the same as either EAW with half the weight.  Since he has 4 BH760 I don't think weight is an issue for him.

Haven't heard the Radius so can't comment except the RSX126/129 look interesting with their 12" LF section and size/weight.

Joshua, what is a "large event"?

Hello and Thanks for the info, a large event for me would be around 300-600+ people but sometimes the venues customers rent out are large ballrooms or barn like buildings at times, I was also think of renting out my equipment for music festivals at events held by the city at a city park and I was just wondering if what I have would be enough for those kind of places. because most of the equipment that I see at festivals like that are usually JBL SR4733X series tops and With
cerwinvegas or B52's for lows.
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