Thursday, July 24, 2008

Totally off the wall request!

I have been put in charge of finding the Garberville Rotary Club a sound system.

Here are the details:

The president wants rechargeable, cordless, wireless, with volume knobs on each, speakers on each table. (eight tables) With one podium mike, and one cordless mike. Now if there is such a thing out there that is practical, and of superior quality, we are interested.

Deep in my chest lies the heart of a contractor, that screams; "Oh no you don't want that! Here is what you really want!". Well my heart is screaming, so I'll share with you what "I really think that I really want him to have". But, I know that there are experts out there that know the trade and I'm hoping that they will network for me and tell me what I "Really Want".

Ekovox and Huck are you listening??? Or others that would, hopefully, like to dive in.

Here's my specs:

1-@ $1500.00 Flexible with proper justification.

2-Our group is usually about fifty people that meet in a twenty by thirty foot room, but we need a sound system that would work good for a gymnasium full of people, or a large outdoor party. ( 500 Clean watts?)

3- Two speakers, possibly four.

4- Reasonable portability.

5- A priority is that we have a sound system that has a feed-back killing circuit that will NOT allow feedback, even when you are standing in front of the speakers. No feed back, never, ever, ever!

6- The microphones need to be crisp and clear, and of good quality for a speaker to be heard well with no distortion.

7- One mic has to be wireless.

8- 12 volt ability would be nice, but has low, low priority.

9- Could it be a system that a musician would be proud to plug into also?

10- I thought that I should give at least ten specs, so enter your own thoughts here!

Here is one that I looked at. what do you think? Fender mod# PD500


Ernie Branscomb said...

Hey, I'm not kidding, i need help here...

EkoVox said...

You, my friend, are in a sad state of affairs....but, there is help.
I tried calling you just now at the shop, but you were out. 4:15ish.

There is help, but the president has unrealistic desires for sound reinforcement. Although, I do understand his wants.....eight wireless speakers at eight tables. Each with their own volume knob. A wireless podium mic and a wireless hand-held microphone and stand. All tied together into one simple, yet cheap public address system.

Some of what the president wants is what is achievable....the 8 wireless speakers on each table is way too much to ask for. And asking for no feedback whatsoever is a matter of understanding the physics of sound. Don't create a signal loop between the speakers and the microphone...meaning, don't stand in front of the speakers when talking.

Ernie, I'll call tomorrow morning if you are in the shop and we'll try to get this worked out.

Anonymous said...

Heck, if I needed that stuff I would go to Radio Shack.


Ernie Branscomb said...

Gee Ekovox, you should have been a contractor. That's the same thing that we say to all of our customers, and if you think that they don't have a clue, you should listen to what the engineers have to say!

Radio Shack might be an option. Speakers and amps seem to work fairly good, but I have rarely seen a microphone that worked well. We have had a few good ones, but I don't like to speculate.

I’ll tell my crew how to know you. They will give you my cell phone number. Thanks in advance, somehow I just knew that you might have an opinion.

Anonymous said...

teach them all sign language, then you can communicate no matter where y'all are, and definitely no feedback.

Eel River Ernie said...

Ernie - Fortuna Rotary has a fairly good system, not sure where they purchased it though. Also, we purchased a great system for the Fortuna Chamber of Commerce through the Fortuna Music Mart, they were really helpful when we told them what our needs were.

Don't know about the eight wireless speakers though, maybe you could come up with a "Bluetooth" for each member and have the President and Program use a cell phone. Might be cheaper and more feasible!

Ernie Branscomb said...

Thanks E.R.E. I have gotten quite a few phone calls. I have been convinced to move my budget to $2000.00

Before I buy, I will put my "Shopping list" on here for a final critique.

It's beginning to sound like we should just issue earplugs for those that don't want to hear!

Right know the favored system is:
2 Mackie SRM450v2 powered speakers
1 Mackie eight channel board
1 Shure58 mike
1 Set of related cables

All from “Musicians Friend”

Greg said...

That day you had Carol and me down for lunch the sound was fine. Maybe the crowd is rowdier most days.

EkoVox said...

Right know the favored system is:
2 Mackie SRM450v2 powered speakers
1 Mackie eight channel board
1 Shure58 mike
1 Set of related cables

That's a really good start. You don't need powered speakers though with the Mackie mixing board. If it's the correct model, the power amplifiers are already inside of the box and there would be no need for the powered speakers. And, probably less cost. (The DN's use a Mackie 6 channel powered board.)

Shure microphones are a very good purchase. Although, the SM58, is usually best for close up vocal work where the pickup is from less than 6" away, it is a good indestructable workhorse.

Here are my suggestions:

Mackie PPM 406M 6-Channel Mixer
(Less expensive and will cover anything you need...If you need more that it.)

Loudspeakers. Just what are you going to be using them for? If you get 15" two-way speakers, takes two people to lift them on and off of stands. They are heavy. 10" or 12" enclosures would fill a room just fine. Mackie's are also expensive

Let's think about cost. If you added a couple of speaker stands, Shure SM58's and cables you are now nearing your $1500 budget.

The Mackie is a good way to go.
But, I do like the idea of the Fender Passport for ease of operation. Especially if you have people who aren't as trained on running a P.A.'s so easy to set up. Granted, there are some gear heads who may recoil at the thought of Fender vs. Mackie....but, what is the going to be the ultimate use of the system. Is it Rotary meetings? I'd go with SIMPLE!!!!!

Ernie Branscomb said...

Thanks Eko, I'm getting a lot of really good info. Thanks.

All of this has to go through our board of directors before we make a purchase though. So, our PA system may turn out looking a lot like sausage.

Eko, the eight channel Mackie board is only a mixing board, and is pretty sophisticated. The big plus is that it only costs $200.00.

The plus of the powered speakers is that they can become a simple system. One speaker that a mic will plug into directly. What could be simpler. Even a "little old lady" could use it at her knitting circle...

That would be a great "fall Back option" something that would make the most sophisticated Gear Head happy, PLUS a system that a Little Old Lady could use.

Sweeeeet right?

EkoVox said...

Hmmmmmm, I just looked that up....that could be an option. Smart of them to put a microphone pre-amp into the actual speaker. That would make it pretty dang easy.