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Sound Reinforcement - Forums for Live Sound Professionals - Your Displayed Name Must Be Your Real Full Name To Post In The Live Sound Forums => DJ Forum => Topic started by: Terry McNeil on January 15, 2011, 05:08:36 am

Title: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Terry McNeil on January 15, 2011, 05:08:36 am
I'm so glad this forum was added because Electronic Dance Music is getting bigger and bigger everyday. Alot of guys who do Pro Audio for a living sometimes don't consider Large DJ systems a product of Pro Audio. Well I guess it's all in the way you look at things. For years I have been using some of the best in equipment in the world, to design Large Scale DJ systems for the top DJ in the world. More and more audio professionals are being asked to provide equipment and services for these events and this forum should be a great outlet for them.

I personally don't like to put labels on things. When it comes to designing a Large Scale DJ system, I like to use equipment that is going to be reliable and big make an impact on the crowd. When it comes to putting these systems together the main ingredient is the BASS. If the BASS ain't there then there's no vibe for the party. The Dance Music crowd wants to hear and FEEL the music. Reproducing great bass is an art as well as a science. There's nothing more exhilarating than watching 25,000 people bob their heads because the bass is moving so much air around and through them. Hours and hours of designing, modeling and testing can go into putting together the right combination of BASS. Using 2 types of subs for each system seems to work best for me because I like to split the BASS into Upper and Lower. This way you can give each section the maximum amount of volume and really stretch the frequencies to the limit.

Well I just wanted to start this thread so we can talk about Large Scale DJ systems. If there's any question I can answer feel free to post or send me a PM.

Thanks,
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Bob Leonard on January 20, 2011, 07:29:37 am
I think your statement may be contradictory. Perhaps instead of calling the system a "DJ" system you might imply more professionalism by stating you design large scale sound systems for DJs.
 
Just a thought, and welcome to the forums.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Brad Weber on January 20, 2011, 01:11:43 pm
Alot of guys who do Pro Audio for a living sometimes don't consider Large DJ systems a product of Pro Audio. Well I guess it's all in the way you look at things. For years I have been using some of the best in equipment in the world, to design Large Scale DJ systems for the top DJ in the world. More and more audio professionals are being asked to provide equipment and services for these events and this forum should be a great outlet for them.
I think this may be misinterpreted as hopefully this will be a good place to discuss issues such as that while high quality, reliable equipment is important, for both DJ or "pro audio" there is much more to being 'professional' than just the equipment used.  Hopefully the DJ forum will be a good resource for everyone to potentially benefit whether discussing DJ focused topics or bridging the DJ and "pro audio" worlds.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Kurt Stephens on January 20, 2011, 03:00:22 pm
I participate on the DJForums.com website which is one of the leading DJ forums currently and I have to agree that there is definitely a need for connections between Pro Audio and DJ gear. Many people on DJForums are recommended to go here to check out good opinions.

Too many people go on those forums, who may be brilliant with DJ gear - but don't know the first things about a good sound system - and unfortunately their performance probably suffers, not because they aren't skilled mixing, but because the FOH gear is setup wrong. 
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Tracy Garner on January 30, 2011, 07:31:05 pm
All the way back to the 80s when I started djing, the big differentiator for my gigs were all about the sound system we used versus the other guys. There were times when maybe we had different remixes or the newest tracks. When we showed up with a van load of actual PA cabinets (OK Old Peavey Sp2 and some JBL Scoops), it was a lot different than the guy who showed up with his Scott or Advent Home stereo speakers...lol

This forum will be the opportunity for some bridge building with the pro DJ and the pro sound folks.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Marjan Milosevic on February 01, 2011, 05:31:02 pm
We have done sound system for most of the top 10 dj's in the world.
Tiesto, David Gueta, Roger Sanchez, David Morales, Armin VanBuuren, to name a few.

I really dont consider the sound system we supplied as a DJ system. it is a nicely deployed sound reinforcement system that is a bit bass heavy. That is it.

Tune it right and that is it. Give me a DJ show any day over a live band show. Much easier. You just baby seat the system all night. That is it.

Main reaction of the people here about DJS is when they try to deploy a system and dont have a clue about it.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Tracy Garner on February 04, 2011, 06:46:31 pm
So...We'll be looking for your guidance/insight because most of us haven't enjoyed the opportunity to work with those guys and may not know what they expect.

For example, there is a show coming to my town in a couple weeks where one of the top reggae dancehall/reggae artists is performing. The promoter just called today asking about sound. My quote was based on any track act that needed sound reinforcement in a venue that holds 1000 people. The promoter is a Reggae DJ and doesn't quite understand the value of having sound reinforcement versus having a wall of reggae speakers. He is still shopping around the other "reggae sound systems" (i.e. dj mixer with a mic. input) and hasn't asked any of the "sound reinforcement" companies about the gig.

Thoughts?

[edited to update spelling, etc.]
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Marjan Milosevic on February 05, 2011, 12:55:18 pm
Reggae artists are used to a distinct sound that those reggae systems produce. Means a lot of basss and sizzle from like 100 piezo drivers.
Unlike other types of music reggae and dub-step has a very prolonged low notes.

And they need the look of the reggae systems as a part of the performance.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Tracy Garner on February 07, 2011, 04:43:05 pm
Back in the early 80s, I was hired to help put together one of those reggae sound systems. Each intricately painted box was the size of a refrigerator and each had 2x18, 1x15, 1x12, 1 community horn with a 2" driver, and 4 motorola piezo tweeters. The whole 16 box system ran on 5 Carver amps (4 Bottom and 1 Top amp). The way they set it up was flawed in many ways. They used the Master Left as the Bass Key and the Master Right as everything else. problem was they left the inputs stereo and no amount of explaining would convince anyone that a lot of music was missing from the mix.

So now, the reggae artist coming to town has a rider. It just says "1 wireless microphone needed with plenty of reverb, delay, and effects".

Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Tim Talbot on February 08, 2011, 07:27:47 pm
''When it comes to putting these systems together the main ingredient is the BASS. If the BASS ain't there then there's no vibe for the party. The Dance Music crowd wants to hear and FEEL the music. Reproducing great bass is an art as well as a science. There's nothing more exhilarating than watching 25,000 people bob their heads because the bass is moving so much air around and through them.''

Love it ! & your 100% right buddy... i've done this for many years now & love it :)
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Franz Francis on February 09, 2011, 06:14:14 pm
Probably some of the above statements are true, but there are some DJs and some of what you guys call reggae DJs with properly configured mega rigs, light years ahead of what some might consider pro in the Lab lounge.

Franz
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Marjan Milosevic on February 09, 2011, 07:57:32 pm
What people here consider a pro sound system is the one that is loud enough, properly setup with a fairly linear frequency response and good coverage.

None of the reggae system are like that.

They are more like this.
(http://www.speakerplans.com/photos/941.jpg)
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Brad Weber on February 10, 2011, 07:36:53 am
Probably some of the above statements are true, but there are some DJs and some of what you guys call reggae DJs with properly configured mega rigs, light years ahead of what some might consider pro in the Lab lounge.
I think that may go right to the point in that "properly configured" infers that the system is properly configured for the specific application or situation.  A properly configured system for one use may be quite inappropriate for another use.  So it may be that in both cases the systems are properly configured for the requirements and expectations associated with their use but that does not mean they are properly configured for all applications.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Jeffhtg (Jeff Kenney) on February 10, 2011, 08:58:50 am
There is more to DJ systems than just deploying bass. Certainly we use more subwoofers - and I tend to use PA systems a little differently than most providers as we tend to try to squeeze more SPL and dynamic range out of the system. Keep in mind there are many genres of dance music - and some of these genres require significantly different deployements.  But my secrets will remain my secrets until you have the pleasure of providing for me :)
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Tracy Garner on February 10, 2011, 11:14:35 am
The challenge always lies in having the latitude to properly deploy the right application...lol
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Todd Anisman on February 23, 2011, 02:15:08 pm
It's a lot tougher when you do both in the same night.  I do quite a bit of that, most recently at a dual facility event here in Los Angeles.

I find that one needs about +10dB up on the Subs for EDM, and that I don't really care about going down to 20Hz- the Chest thump is much higher- 80-120Hz.  THe Low Mids are often ignored in a DJ setup in favor of Rumble & crap. 

Learning Yoru Crossover cold, Going Digitally controlled on it such as an Ashly 3.24c or higher helps- One can adjust by the band if neccessary. I find tha Aux Fed Subs can help, but cause a lot of confusion if someone isn't up on how to run it, which is why I generally stay away.  Also Proper array of speakers helps a lot, and understanding coverages.  In general it's the same gig as a Proper sound reinforcement job mixing bands.

Todd A.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Daniel Maki on March 15, 2011, 10:58:47 pm
I don't see the need to argue semantics.  I know what you mean regarding EDM sound vs. other sound.  There is a difference, but it's not an either/or thing.  Naturally there's crossover.  Reggae systems are cool because they're are so darn funky and visually imposing...they "look" loud.  Of course they are not technically "the best", but it's a particular niche and style that is as much a part of the music as rasta dudes and joints.  The roots of EDM systems come from this.  The underground/warehouse/free party scene.  Crews had systems with names.  It IS about kinetic bass. 
The skills used to mix bands transfer to mixing for EDM DJs (and "live PA")  But the emphasis is on the beat and bass, not guitars and vocals.  It still has to sound good, and EDM sounds way better when you hear all the freqs clean and clear- yes the midbass is crucial too.  But the overall EQ is is definitely with a significant rising slope going to the LEFT.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Tim Talbot on March 16, 2011, 04:41:12 am
Over spec everything by 70% and your be fine.... ;)
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Steven 'DJ Sound' Pelham on March 16, 2011, 12:37:43 pm
for dj systems ppl need to realize that there is a lot more power needed. at least 70 % as theres more compresson on the signal. bass is a must and low mids should be cut completely. here in britain they like lots of sub bass but not much mids. we drive the dj mixer hard so it gives the most aggressive bassy sound.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Tracy Garner on March 16, 2011, 12:54:02 pm
for dj systems ppl need to realize that there is a lot more power needed. at least 70 % as theres more compresson on the signal. bass is a must and low mids should be cut completely. here in britain they like lots of sub bass but not much mids. we drive the dj mixer hard so it gives the most aggressive bassy sound.

If you are going to cut the mids completely, it should be done from the DJ mixer and not system-wide lest the voice of the MC is muddled and you will be missing a lot of musical content as well. Every song is mastered (or not) differently. This is why most of the value of a DJ mixer is in the EQ on each channel.

I agree there is a perceived sweet spot on most mixers and it is generally perceived by many as overdrive. I have toyed around with many different solutions including preamps, expensive multi-band compressors, processing units,  and even BBE in an attempt to get that sweet spot sound without sending the main console operator a hotter than desired signal.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Tim Talbot on March 21, 2011, 10:59:50 pm
''low mids should be cut completely'' Really ?? Ummmm different i guess......
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Steven 'DJ Sound' Pelham on March 22, 2011, 06:13:44 am
''low mids should be cut completely'' Really ?? Ummmm different i guess......
yea, they just dont sound good with dance music. ppl want sub bass and hi mids (3k-4k) and hi. we allways get complemented on our sound. but maybe its also the rig!!
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Doug Fowler on March 22, 2011, 09:40:13 am
yea, they just dont sound good with dance music. ppl want sub bass and hi mids (3k-4k) and hi. we allways get complemented on our sound. but maybe its also the rig!!

Define "low mids" please.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Brad Weber on March 22, 2011, 12:56:33 pm
for dj systems ppl need to realize that there is a lot more power needed. at least 70 % as theres more compresson on the signal.
Is there really more power or output needed or is it actually the ability of the system to handle greater average power and levels?  More compression can mean less difference between the peak and average levels, thus a lower crest factor, but does not necessarily represent greater overall power requirements.  In fact, if they had the same average level then a more dynamic or higher crest factor signal would require greater peak power.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Tim Talbot on March 22, 2011, 05:55:36 pm
If we talking about ''low mids'' as in 125Hz - 250Hz then i would say you want a fair amount of that...
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Steven 'DJ Sound' Pelham on March 23, 2011, 08:39:19 am
I think not !! they muddy the sound loads!! sounds loads cleaner without just take your eq and pull the mids out we boost the others to get more cut. might sound odd but for our music it sounds good as theres loads of sub to make up for it !
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Tim Talbot on March 23, 2011, 11:23:06 am
ooooook may i ask what system you use / do this with ?
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Pascal.Pincosy on April 02, 2011, 10:07:26 am
I think not !! they muddy the sound loads!! sounds loads cleaner without just take your eq and pull the mids out we boost the others to get more cut. might sound odd but for our music it sounds good as theres loads of sub to make up for it !
It sounds to me like your system has not been properly aligned. EDM required tons of mid-bass. Without it certain genres suffer greatly.
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Tim Talbot on April 03, 2011, 03:53:38 pm
I would say he the only one here who thinks this way lol
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Jeffhtg (Jeff Kenney) on July 10, 2011, 02:07:50 am
''low mids should be cut completely'' Really ?? Ummmm different i guess......


There is a reason I typically use only large K lines, flown J subs, or a looong dosc rig.. but I guess I don't know much about EDM :)
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Jason Lebel on July 23, 2011, 07:58:34 am
This thread is very interesting. I started mixing bands in '95 and records in '98. I build my own boxes now and I tend to build towards the dj aspect. It requires a lot of headroom on the subs, punchy and articulate mids, and pristine highs. However the system translates beautifully when I mix "organic" music (bands). A well deployed system is a well deployed system, whether it's playback or live. As both a dj and an audio engineer, I absolutely love a brilliant, impact-full sound system. And at the end of the day, mixing is mixing, art and science! :)
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Mark Dawson on August 11, 2011, 06:44:15 am
This stuff isn't rocket science. Firstly call your professional provider of choice. Tell them how many people, the area etc.   They will have all the trick gear and provide a drive mixer.   They will provide a great FOH rig and monitoring as per the DJ's rider.   Something like a Midas Venice or Yamaha 01v is kinda cool in this situation to prod inputs and outputs.   With a bit of limiting on the outboard and a nice compressor for the guy with the radio mic.   Plug and play...   :)
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Mike Pyle on October 04, 2011, 04:38:40 am
I'll be setting up a RCF TTL11A system for a dance event in Burlingame, CA this Thursday. If it performs up to expectation that night I'll have it running there all this weekend. Anyone interested in giving it a listen is welcome to call me for an appointment to get into the ballroom for a short time. I'll be working off & on at the event, so just leave a message if I don't answer when you call.

http://www.rcf.it/products/touring-and-theatre/ttl11a

http://www.rcf.it/en_US/products/touring-and-theatre/tts26-a

Here's the event info:
http://www.boogiebythebay.org/
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Fernando Lopez on October 04, 2011, 10:44:27 pm
Hey Mike, please take lots of pictures and do a review on the system with comparisons


Thanks
Title: Re: Pro Audio or Large Scale DJ systems??
Post by: Mike Pyle on January 31, 2012, 12:36:47 pm
I'll be setting up a RCF TTL11A system for a dance event in Burlingame, CA this Thursday....

Well, it has taken a while to get back to this post. The RCF TTL11A/TTS26A system worked out very well at the two events where I used it before I had to return the demo system. The first event was the one that I mentioned above, a 4 day & night long dance convention that topped 1600 in weekend attendance in a 20,000 sq ft room. I normally cover this room with 4 of my SLS LS8695 columns, two per side, along with 4 LA400 subs. I brought that system along with the plan that I would use the TTL11A only on Thursday night as that is the lightest attendance, then set up the SLS system for the rest of the weekend. As it turned out the RCFs exceeded my expectations, and at the height of the event on Thursday were performing strongly enough that I decided to leave them in place.

The TTS26A subs offer the option of either a 30Hz or 45Hz highpass filter. I initially set it at 30Hz, noting that it performed fine at that setting, just an occasional flicker of the limit light with the system running as loud as I intended to use it. After a long day of loading in, setting up and then hanging in the ballroom to keep an eye on things, I turned in at 3am with the all night social dancing still going strong. The Burlingame Hyatt Regency is an atrium design building, with the grand ballroom being a concrete bunker below ground level, and the restaurant area above it. I was in a room 7 floors up on the opposite side of the hotel, and the pounding of those two subwoofers kept me awake until after 5am. The first thing I did on Friday morning was reset the highpass to 45Hz, which kept the rest of the hotel liveable.

My SLS columns have always done a wonderful job covering these large ballrooms, but I had to devise my own base mounting system in order to angle them to minimize backslap from the far walls. The beam steering capability of the RCF TTL11A takes care of that for me. They basically let you dial in a setting for the height at which the column is placed and the distance to the far wall or back of your audience area, and the onboard processing will delay the signal to the individual amp channels, setting the vertical beam width and down angle needed. I expected this to create some ugliness in the sound quality, but was surprised to find that the process was transparent to my senses.

The most important factor in my choice of this style of system is that I have to deliver engaging sound levels all the way to the farthest audience in these large rooms, yet people must be able to dance and interact directly in front of the main speakers. The SLS columns were excellent in this respect. While the RCF columns don't contain enough drivers to deliver line array performance like the SLS system, they ARE arranged so that as you move closer you are hit by much less than the full output of the column. At the height of social dancing on Saturday night, a hearing protection vendor at the event wandered the room with a meter. He measured peaks around 95 dB c-weighted at the edge of the dancefloor opposite the columns, and 105 dB directly in front of one of the columns. About 70 feet separated the two points of measurement.

Overall I'm very impressed with the system's performance and ease of setup. I decided to buy one and expect delivery tomorrow.

Here are some photos of the system setup, as well as several shots of the room to give you an idea of the size of the event. You'll see in one of the dance floor shots couples dancing right in front of the speakers.

http://audiopyle.com/setup.jpg
http://audiopyle.com/TTL-FRONT.jpg
http://audiopyle.com/TTL-BACK.jpg
http://audiopyle.com/TTL-QTR2.jpg
http://audiopyle.com/TTL-QTR.jpg
http://audiopyle.com/TTL-SIDE.jpg

http://audiopyle.com/room1.jpg
http://audiopyle.com/room2.jpg
http://audiopyle.com/room-left.jpg
http://audiopyle.com/audience.jpg
http://audiopyle.com/dancefloor2.jpg
http://audiopyle.com/dancefloor1.jpg
http://audiopyle.com/dancefloor3.jpg