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Author Topic: Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?  (Read 1857 times)

Mark Scrivener

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Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?
« on: August 14, 2019, 04:54:41 pm »

The thread "Challenge: Build a full band system that can fit in an SUV" (https://forums.prosoundweb.com/index.php/topic,171796.0.html) got me thinking. It's really about the subs. There are tons of decent choices for small powered tops and monitors (or IEMs) that get loud and occupy little space, and the mixer is a total non issue with all the rack mount wireless digital solutions on the market. Heck without subs I've moved systems like this in a Ford Focus! The real challenge is finding good subs that can still fit through the door/hatch opening on a typical vehicle and are light enough to be comfortably transported by a single person.

Personally I have 2x PRX815XLFW's. JBL lists them at 58 lbs each, and I find the handle positions well balanced for single person transport. Not gonna handle a large outdoor DJ gig, but they work for my needs. The JTR 212 Captivator looks like an excellent option as well (at 2x the cost), 67 lbs, though I have no idea how well balanced the handles are for single person lifting in and out of a vehicle. 

So let's hear it - what are your favorite subs when you have to move them alone in a personal vehicle (no lift gates or box vans)?

Rob Bernstein

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Re: Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?
« Reply #1 on: August 14, 2019, 10:50:22 pm »

The thread "Challenge: Build a full band system that can fit in an SUV" (https://forums.prosoundweb.com/index.php/topic,171796.0.html) got me thinking. It's really about the subs. There are tons of decent choices for small powered tops and monitors (or IEMs) that get loud and occupy little space, and the mixer is a total non issue with all the rack mount wireless digital solutions on the market. Heck without subs I've moved systems like this in a Ford Focus! The real challenge is finding good subs that can still fit through the door/hatch opening on a typical vehicle and are light enough to be comfortably transported by a single person.

Personally I have 2x PRX815XLFW's. JBL lists them at 58 lbs each, and I find the handle positions well balanced for single person transport. Not gonna handle a large outdoor DJ gig, but they work for my needs. The JTR 212 Captivator looks like an excellent option as well (at 2x the cost), 67 lbs, though I have no idea how well balanced the handles are for single person lifting in and out of a vehicle. 

So let's hear it - what are your favorite subs when you have to move them alone in a personal vehicle (no lift gates or box vans)?
I have a Mazda CX-5, what I would call a mid-sized SUV. I do most of my weekend work for a 6-piece wedding band, I work alone, and my back ain't getting any stronger.
I had been using a pair of JBL PRX715XLF's, same size and power as your 815XLF's. Served me well for almost 4-years. I can lift them and the whole PA (4 x Yamaha DXR10's, 2 x JBL PRX712's, A&H Qu-SB, mics, stands, etc...) fits in my SUV. I do have a cargo carrier that attaches to the trailer hitch for things like my 4-wheeler and mic stands.
I decided I wanted to try something other than the PRX715XLF's for subs and have the weight and size constraints you mention.
I went with a pair of RCF SUB-905AS MKII. A tad heavier than the JBL's and a tad taller. Some nice DSP options and the covers RCF sells for them are superb, very well thought out. They fit in the SUV nicely and I just had to adjust the truck pack to accommodate.
And they sound great. I did an A/B with my JBL subs and they sound much fuller to my ears.
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Rick Powell

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Re: Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2019, 12:08:57 am »

The Captivator 212's have those "4-way" cut-out handles that can be grabbed in any direction on both ends. I have not grabbed one for loading myself, but if you are grabbing both handles it's a 30" wingspan between the ends (16 H x 30 W x 22 D, when laid sideways). I am used to hauling bigger cabinets and am sure it wouldn't be a problem for me to load into a small vehicle by myself, but that's just me. Danley TH Mini's should be another candidate, similar weight, slightly smaller dimensions (22 H x 15 W x 22 D) and have a cut-out grab handle on the top end only, but they don't make a self powered version if that's important to you.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2019, 12:11:15 am by Rick Powell »
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andyolsen

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Re: Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?
« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2019, 12:24:28 am »

I used to load up Danley mini subs (1 12s).
They are easy, but heavier than you might think.
Built solid like a tank, sound great.
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Mal Brown

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Re: Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?
« Reply #4 on: August 15, 2019, 01:38:56 pm »

I built a few of Dave Green (GreenBoy) fEarful 12 subs.  Very small.  Very punchy.  Based on Eminence 3012lf.  Like anything small and voiced as a sub, there are limits...

If I were buying, the QSC rear cancelling sub would be high on my list.
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Mark Rombouts

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Re: Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?
« Reply #5 on: August 15, 2019, 01:59:47 pm »

I recently bought an FBT Subline118sa sub. 18 powered. Great sub and really small for an 18. I like it very much. Before these I had RCF 8004, way bigger, too big for my use.
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Dave Guilford

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Re: Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?
« Reply #6 on: August 15, 2019, 02:09:22 pm »

The newer qsc cardioid ksc212 or whatever is really pretty sharp, considering a relatively small size.  Sounds nice.  I thought the cardio thinf was gimmicky - but it works and its noticable.
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Craig Hauber

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Re: Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?
« Reply #7 on: August 15, 2019, 03:14:08 pm »

The thread "Challenge: Build a full band system that can fit in an SUV" (https://forums.prosoundweb.com/index.php/topic,171796.0.html) got me thinking. It's really about the subs. There are tons of decent choices for small powered tops and monitors (or IEMs) that get loud and occupy little space, and the mixer is a total non issue with all the rack mount wireless digital solutions on the market. Heck without subs I've moved systems like this in a Ford Focus! The real challenge is finding good subs that can still fit through the door/hatch opening on a typical vehicle and are light enough to be comfortably transported by a single person.

Personally I have 2x PRX815XLFW's. JBL lists them at 58 lbs each, and I find the handle positions well balanced for single person transport. Not gonna handle a large outdoor DJ gig, but they work for my needs. The JTR 212 Captivator looks like an excellent option as well (at 2x the cost), 67 lbs, though I have no idea how well balanced the handles are for single person lifting in and out of a vehicle. 

So let's hear it - what are your favorite subs when you have to move them alone in a personal vehicle (no lift gates or box vans)?

Don't laugh, but I use the Ramsa 240 still for small events that I alone have to carry.  After multiple hernia surgeries and a back that's going, I would rather walk multiple trips with smaller light items than have to grunt even a medium sized tour-worthy cabinet.
So for tiny gigs (acoustic singer/guitar in a lobby or mansion) I take just one of the subs to fill in some "warmth"  for anything larger I'll take 2 or 4.  For my maximum under those circumstances I take six -anything more has diminishing returns. 
Anything larger simply must have allotment for an assistant or additional loaders, ramps, elevators etc...
The Ramsa subs more than surpass the bose sticks and their companion bass-box that seems to dominate those types of gigs.  Three per side keeps up with an MI-grade single-18 and they are more easy to hide for those gigs where decor is more important than anything else.
I regularly use a Grand Marquis (Crown Victoria) for those smaller gigs, everything fits fine (considering the large backseat and cavernous trunk on those), it fits great in parking structures and doesn't embarrass me at the Valet.
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Peter Kowalczyk

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Re: Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?
« Reply #8 on: August 15, 2019, 05:12:45 pm »

The newer qsc cardioid ksc212 or whatever is really pretty sharp, considering a relatively small size.  Sounds nice.  I thought the cardio thinf was gimmicky - but it works and its noticable.

We put a QSC KS212 cardioid into a small venue last year.  The cardioid effect works, and it's got decent output.  However, like most bandpass designs, it's kind of a 'one-note wonder' - exactly 60Hz if I recall correctly.  I used a high-Q notch there to 'even out' the response a bit.  The clients are happy.  ( I started a thread a while ago about 'Low Profile Subs' where we discussed this and other options.  In the end, this model was what someone else wanted to buy... so it goes).

If SPL / ft^3 is the main metric, this is a good option.  I'd still prefer to mix on  KW181s or other direct radiating subs....
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Jay Marr

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Re: Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?
« Reply #9 on: August 16, 2019, 09:41:38 am »

I like the JBL SRX718s for personal carry.  They're pretty light and easy to pop in and out of a SUV.  I power them with a Crown iTech.
6 space rack on wheels - itech, X32 core, S16, patchbay. - also very easy to pop in and out of my SUV.
Take your tops of choice, and you're good to go.  I'll throw either my DSR112s or JTR Noesis over those subs and either system sounds amazing (I'll use one side of iTech for subs, one side for JTR).
The JTR stand up in my Escalade, so they actually have a really small footprint for packing.
I also have my personal monitor (only), cable trunk, and my guitar rig all in that Escalade - and only have to put one seat down.

If I was buying new today - I would likely be looking at the JTR Captivator 212.  Reviews are all super positive, and the form factor looks awesome.
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ProSoundWeb Community

Re: Favorite small/lightweight subs for single person transport?
« Reply #9 on: August 16, 2019, 09:41:38 am »


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