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Author Topic: Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp  (Read 478 times)

Gus Shearer

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Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp
« on: August 28, 2019, 09:21:53 pm »

Apologies if this is a nonsense question. I am investigating a low cost way to hook up a set of fixed outdoor speakers/horns to a press box at out little league field, so that we can hook up our existing portable PA system during the season and not require stringing speakers for each game. We have 2 portable PA's - a Berhinger EPA150 and a Fender Passport 150PRO.  We can dedicate either to the system/setup.

These are loud enough for our small field with the speakers that come with the units, its just a big hassle to string speakers for each game and we'd rather have dedicated horns or speakers on the building that we just connect.

I notice from both Amps that they are rated at 150Watts with the matched speakers and rated at 4 Ohms. I need some advise on what to install as I see just about every outdoor horn is 8 Ohms - can I use 8 Ohm horns on a PA rated for 4 Ohm speakers??

Thanks for any advice - perhaps its not possible so please let me know. We are a non-profit so trying to keep it as low cost as possible/hence reuse what we have.
« Last Edit: August 28, 2019, 09:56:25 pm by Gus Shearer »
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David Allred

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Re: Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp
« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2019, 11:11:37 pm »

Apologies if this is a nonsense question. I am investigating a low cost way to hook up a set of fixed outdoor speakers/horns to a press box at out little league field, so that we can hook up our existing portable PA system during the season and not require stringing speakers for each game. We have 2 portable PA's - a Berhinger EPA150 and a Fender Passport 150PRO.  We can dedicate either to the system/setup.

These are loud enough for our small field with the speakers that come with the units, its just a big hassle to string speakers for each game and we'd rather have dedicated horns or speakers on the building that we just connect.

I notice from both Amps that they are rated at 150Watts with the matched speakers and rated at 4 Ohms. I need some advise on what to install as I see just about every outdoor horn is 8 Ohms - can I use 8 Ohm horns on a PA rated for 4 Ohm speakers??

Thanks for any advice - perhaps its not possible so please let me know. We are a non-profit so trying to keep it as low cost as possible/hence reuse what we have.
You can connect 2 8ohm horns in parallel to equal 4 ohms.

What about building housings on the press box that can be hinged open and closed to protect from the weather (for the systems' regular speakers)?
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Gus Shearer

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Re: Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp
« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2019, 11:43:02 pm »

You can connect 2 8ohm horns in parallel to equal 4 ohms.

What about building housings on the press box that can be hinged open and closed to protect from the weather (for the systems' regular speakers)?

Thank you.. I am afraid modifying the Press Box is not allowed - but we are allowed to mount speakers to the outside.

To understand better - does that mean I could use 4 x 8 Ohm horns - 2 on each side (L/R) wired in parallel. If I use 4 of the Pyle PHSP5 65W horns will the 150W Amp be powerful enough to 'work' them. I realize they are low end, but we are in the North East - there is going to be snow/ice and I don't want to invest a lot in case they don't work. We primarily use the system for announcement, with short bursts of music between innings, so music quality is not primary concern - just something clear and fixed in place.

Thanks
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Jim Thorn

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Re: Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp
« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2019, 12:22:08 am »

The amp's 4 ohm rating is the lowest load impedance the manufacturer recommends, but the amp is quite happy to drive a higher impedance, so you may want to just use one horn per channel.  The amp will run a little cooler, and you're likely to be satisfied with the volume, since horns are generally much more efficient than the box speakers that came with the amp.  Just don't try to boost the bass -- it's a waste of power to try, and it's the most likely way you could damage the inexpensive horns.  This sounds like a nice low-cost, good-deed project, and it sounds like you have realistic expectations. Best wishes!
Jim Thorn

Thank you.. I am afraid modifying the Press Box is not allowed - but we are allowed to mount speakers to the outside.

To understand better - does that mean I could use 4 x 8 Ohm horns - 2 on each side (L/R) wired in parallel. If I use 4 of the Pyle PHSP5 65W horns will the 150W Amp be powerful enough to 'work' them. I realize they are low end, but we are in the North East - there is going to be snow/ice and I don't want to invest a lot in case they don't work. We primarily use the system for announcement, with short bursts of music between innings, so music quality is not primary concern - just something clear and fixed in place.

Thanks
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Gus Shearer

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Re: Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp
« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2019, 07:17:08 am »

The amp's 4 ohm rating is the lowest load impedance the manufacturer recommends, but the amp is quite happy to drive a higher impedance, so you may want to just use one horn per channel.  The amp will run a little cooler, and you're likely to be satisfied with the volume, since horns are generally much more efficient than the box speakers that came with the amp.  Just don't try to boost the bass -- it's a waste of power to try, and it's the most likely way you could damage the inexpensive horns.  This sounds like a nice low-cost, good-deed project, and it sounds like you have realistic expectations. Best wishes!
Jim Thorn

Thanks for the help.
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David Allred

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Re: Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp
« Reply #5 on: August 29, 2019, 07:22:06 am »

Thank you.. I am afraid modifying the Press Box is not allowed - but we are allowed to mount speakers to the outside.



Thanks

I am not sure I see the difference between a speaker mounted and a small box with a speaker in it mounted.  The difference is only a few inches.
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Steven Eudaly

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Re: Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp
« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2019, 09:12:33 am »

Please keep in mind paging horns are going to sound much different from the speakers you're using now. Frequency response is going to be limited to the "telephone band" and will be useless for music playback. If you're just calling out players names, it will be passable, though never pretty. However, if budget and is the ultimate concern and announcements are the sole use, they should fit the bill.

Mike Monte

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Re: Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp
« Reply #7 on: August 29, 2019, 09:17:15 am »

Apologies if this is a nonsense question. I am investigating a low cost way to hook up a set of fixed outdoor speakers/horns to a press box at out little league field, so that we can hook up our existing portable PA system during the season and not require stringing speakers for each game. We have 2 portable PA's - a Berhinger EPA150 and a Fender Passport 150PRO.  We can dedicate either to the system/setup.

These are loud enough for our small field with the speakers that come with the units, its just a big hassle to string speakers for each game and we'd rather have dedicated horns or speakers on the building that we just connect.

I notice from both Amps that they are rated at 150Watts with the matched speakers and rated at 4 Ohms. I need some advise on what to install as I see just about every outdoor horn is 8 Ohms - can I use 8 Ohm horns on a PA rated for 4 Ohm speakers??

Thanks for any advice - perhaps its not possible so please let me know. We are a non-profit so trying to keep it as low cost as possible/hence reuse what we have.

18 years ago (when my son was playing T-ball) we received a notice (in the monthly newsletter) that the baseball association was looking for someone with PA knowledge as the field's PA was out of order.  I ended up installing a whole new system (donated my labor and the assoc. bought the gear).
To my knowledge, the system is still working.....although I do not remember what I had spec'd/installed.

IMO: What you have for speakers will-not stand up to the weather in a permanent install - especially in the northeast.  If you want to use "some" of what you have, you'd be best to permanently-mount some "weather proof" horns to the clubhouse and use the power amp/mixer portion of what you have to drive them....by horns, I mean something like (not limited to) this:

https://www.fullcompass.com/prod/087599-bogen-kflds30t-wide-dispersion-reentrant-horn-30w-with-transformer?gclid=Cj0KCQjw753rBRCVARIsANe3o47dCTtV68-yifJNdN4WpF7T3aoY9vXJaLdCJypkIFsLyl7NeT3TMIkaAiVMEALw_wcB


The above (or similar...I'd research others...) would work for announcements....for music, ehhh....also, since this will be a permanent install, it would be best to mount something that won't "walk" (be stolen).....as it will be up year round.

Since little league/baseball starts up in March in your area (assuming northeast US?), you have plenty of time to seek funding to finance the install....banks, Home Depot, Walmart, etc. set aside funds to put back in their communities.  All you need to do is ask (adding a business' sign to you backstop as a sponsor goes a long way..).  The first week of January is the time to seek funding...   

If your area is already maxed-out donation-wise you can use some of what you have to get you through.

I, for one, get a bit of satisfaction out of making a pile of mis-matched stuff/"junk" work.....but one thing's for sure, your speakers will not hold up to the weather. 
I am not a fan of what you are currently using, but if your rig's output suits your needs, you shouldn't need much...

If you are located in southeast MA send me a pm.
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Gus Shearer

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Re: Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp
« Reply #8 on: August 29, 2019, 12:40:37 pm »

Thanks Steve and Mike for the added comments.

Sound is important but we have been to many other fields that use horns and they seem fine.

Mike, thanks for reaching out - I am in CT and will send you a pm - I think you know exactly my situation - we use it every weekend for 10 weeks in the Spring, into early summer for All-Star season and then a break and only 4 weeks in the fall for Fall Ball - otherwise it will sit idle, so cost is pretty important.
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Don T. Williams

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Re: Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp
« Reply #9 on: August 30, 2019, 04:38:06 pm »

I installed a small PA with (4)  10"-2 way speakers in a weather resistant enclosure provided by the HS maintenance crew on a tennis court.  The enclosures looked like they would protect the speaker from the weather, but they didn't have a way to secure them from theft.  They were gone by Monday morning!  A word to the wise!
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ProSoundWeb Community

Re: Help/advice adding speakers/horns to portable PA amp
« Reply #9 on: August 30, 2019, 04:38:06 pm »


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