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Considering a pa upgrade...what are your thoughts?

byeager

I'm considering a PA upgrade and would like some input on my choices. This will be for a 5 piece rock band with two monitor wedge mixes and one IEM mix.
3 Yamaha DSR215 for mains (1 for spare; the three will be rotated in/out service)
2 Yamaha DSR115 for monitors
2 Yamaha DSR118W subs
1 Presonus 24.4.2 StudioLive digital mixer
I have two Yamaha 15" Club series monitors and a power amp for use as a spare, if needed. If one sub failed, I could get buy with only one. If the board failed, I have a Yamaha 16 channel powered mixer I can send a full range signal from. All this will be operated stageside (no soundman).
I understand that the Yamaha DSR series speakers have internal protection...am I correct, or would a driveracks be needed?
I know there are pros/cons of going to powered speakers. What are your thoughts? I like Yamaha PA equipment, but am not real familiar with the DSR series. Any other preferences?
Thanks for any info!
September 5, 2011 @04:39am
Honz

In a band setting playing small to medium venues - I have been quite happy since making the switch to powered cabinets. I was skeptical at first, but have been very impressed with Carvin's PA equipment. With Class D digital power amps, cabinets are very lightweight. The powered 18" subs are rated 700W continuous & only weigh 65lbs. The powered 12" mains are rated 400W continuous.
No more heavy power amps. No more racks & racks of eq or effects. We have one 6 space rack case that contains a power conditioner/sequencer, compressors, digital PA eq, and monitor eq.
Overall - our band has been extremely pleased with a powered cabinet system. One of the single best improvements we made was the addition of pink noise/auto eq unit. This allows us to run pink noise for a 5-10 mins & set the system EQ to the room, then memorizes it for future gigs.
September 5, 2011 @05:05pm
Honz

In a band setting playing small to medium venues - I have been quite happy since making the switch to powered cabinets. I was skeptical at first, but have been very impressed with Carvin's PA equipment. With Class D digital power amps, cabinets are very lightweight. The powered 18" subs are rated 700W continuous & only weigh 65lbs. The powered 12" mains are rated 400W continuous.
No more heavy power amps. No more racks & racks of eq or effects. We have one 6 space rack case that contains a power conditioner/sequencer, compressors, digital PA eq, and monitor eq.
Overall - our band has been extremely pleased with a powered cabinet system. One of the single best improvements we made was the addition of pink noise/auto eq unit. This allows us to run pink noise for a 5-10 mins & set the system EQ to the room, then memorizes it for future gigs.
September 5, 2011 @08:05pm
TimmyP1955

Powered boxes are a real pain unless you have your cabling properly done - and I've yet to see anyone who has.
September 6, 2011 @01:06am
byeager

Powered boxes are a real pain unless you have your cabling properly done - and I've yet to see anyone who has.

Can you elaborate? The last rig I saw with powered speakers had a mic cable that ran from the board to each subwoofer; then a short mic cable running from the sub to the main.
September 7, 2011 @02:50am
eRoland

I like the qsc kw12 with kw18 sub. Most rock bands have low end to spare so I think 12 inch have a tighter mid range for vocal sound to cut through.
EV ELX112P are lower priced and have some good reviews.
Now a rant. Clear sound is louder than messy overly lound sound. Most rock bands have to much amp (100) on stage, a 60 or even 30 amp miced on a good pa sounds great and lowers the wedge spill into the audience. They pay the bills and clearer sound will get you more gigs. Reduce stage volume and you will sound better to those who pay the bills. I would suggest you get so money together and hire a pro sound engineer for a show or two to help get that digital board tweeked out. The presonus factory settings for the fat channels on each input would also get you better results. Kick and bass (maybe so keys if used for bass effects) only in subs and low cuts on everythin else. If you can get the band on in ears and only have wedges for vocalist you will find in short order the complaints for club owners and fans will take a gaint leap.
eRoland
January 28, 2012 @04:35am
michaelhoddy

Powered boxes are a real pain unless you have your cabling properly done - and I've yet to see anyone who has.

Carrying around an amp rack and cable trunk full of 12-gauge or better speaker cable can be a real pain unless you have a box truck, ramp, and a couple gorillas as hands - and I have yet to see any typical weekend warrior band that does.
Powered boxes are ideal for your typical tops-and-subs club date system. The only additional cabling is power to the stage lip, and you can often run such a powered system off of one or at the most two circuits, which is a real plus in most of these sorts of places.
I like the QSC KW tops. The KW and K-series subs are completely unimpressive to me, unfortunately, after having used them a couple times. Surprisingly, I was very impressed with JBL's PRX- 612m's on top, 618's on the bottom. Perfect little system for this kind of work, especially with a digi board (in this case an LS9) on the front. No amp rack, no FOH processing rack needed.
January 29, 2012 @12:45pm
TimmyP1955

Can you elaborate? The last rig I saw with powered speakers had a mic cable that ran from the board to each subwoofer; then a short mic cable running from the sub to the main.

It's easy if you do it rightly, but I've yet to see anyone do so. Even done the usual way (AC and mic cables all over the place) it's not bad if all you have is a pair of tops. If you add subs, you are staring to need some decent AC cabling. If you have powered monitors it's a total PITA unless you have hybrid cables all home run to a small rack.
February 5, 2012 @04:51am
eRoland

On most small stages I could set up a all active set with 3 or 4 extention cords with 3 plug heads, 4- 50 foot xlr and 4 - 15 foot xlr's. most powered speakers do no draw more then 2 amps each. 3 wedges (6 amps max)would only need 1 power cord and 1 to 3 mic cables. A stack on each side 1 power and 1 mic cable (simple L/R set up). 2 stacks with sub and top would only pull 8 amps and 3 wedges 6 amps, all on 1 20 amp outlet or two 15 amp outlets. Most people are messy when they run cable though I can not stand standing on a cord it must not bother some folks.
If you run a short stage snake to the front lip of stage then patch into main stage box you can have only one signal cable down stage.
I am anal about cables and can not handle the cable spagetti.
February 7, 2012 @10:40pm