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Old 25th September 2010, 03:39 PM   #1
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Location: Fort Collins Colorado
Default Speakers for a guitar line array?

I've dumped all my tube gear and cabinets for a move.
I'm going with a modeler setup however I want to build a custom line array for stage use. Can anyone recommend some inexpensive 3-8 inch speakers for this application that have the widest range? Rather than the multiway cabs I use now, I'd rather have a 60-14k full range 8 speaker (or more) array.
I'm building a 16 driver unit with 2" drivers now.
High power is probably not as critical as one would be using series parallel wiring anyway.

The end result would be a fairly full range column cabinet for guitar use that will reflect exactly what the PA is getting. Guitar cabs roll of at 80hz-100hz and 3-4k so you don't hear what you are really sending. 12" modeler speakers just don't cut it. Multi way passive systems introduce phase errors in the critical midrange area making it difficult to place your tone "around" the singer.
Any Ideas other than a bose L1?

Last edited by screamersusa; 25th September 2010 at 03:41 PM.
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Old 25th September 2010, 06:28 PM   #2
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You might get more response in the Musical Instrument section. I would think for this applications something like the Eminence Alpha 6 might work well. I wouldn't think you'd need much more range than what a normal guitar cab can provide unless you're going for some "atypical" guitar sounds. I'm not really clear on what you're going for - I'd be tempted just to get a regular floor monitor and run a mix from the PA.
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Old 25th September 2010, 07:20 PM   #3
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the problem is using modelers. Most people use a modeler with a standard guitar speaker. You have to turn off the cabinet emulation to make that work so you cannot use a line out to the PA system. You are forced to use a microphone.
I use a bag end 15d-x coax now, but my line array experiments have much nicer stage fill capability. The problem with normal floor monitors and powered cabs is that they have phase errors and holes in the response at the crossover point.
I posted here because what I am looking for is a single driver type system that gets stacked into an array. I.E. 8-12 drivers. This would also alter the throw of the cabinet allowing it to fire across the stage utilizing line array properties. Something like bose l1
Typically one would think you only need the response of a guitar speaker, however the guitar speaker cuts the low and high so you cannot hear all the high frequency artifacts or low frequency problems. Micing the cabinet results in phase problems that usually translate to not cutting through. Most people wind up pushing the guitar level to compensate drowning out the singer.
The end result is a direct out to the PA and a stage system that reflects what the PA is getting. Eliminating: The engineers "idea" of what YOUR guitar should sound like, the extra mic that picks up the drums and bass as well as the floor monitors, and eliminating the phase frequency problems associated with mic placement. IN addition you can eliminate the too loud icepick sound most guitarists get because their cabinet is below their hips.
I play rhythm, one icepicky guitar is enough.
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Old 26th September 2010, 11:32 PM   #4
Kensai is offline Kensai  United States
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Pioneer B20s would work, and they can hit those marks on a pretty slim open baffle, too, giving you a dipole line that should make pretty much any space sound good. They're even on sale now at Parts Express, so that helps. The main problem is going to be the fact that they're 8"ers, so the large center to center spacing is going to cause some issues with comb filtering which will kill the top end from almost every listening position. You could use a high sensitivity piezo or two to put the air back in the top for cheap, or if you've got the proper EQ in your chain, you can probably get it back that way.

I have a pair (now highly modified, though I used them for a good long time stock) that I've run guitar and bass through, and they're really great drivers for this sort of duty. Just not sure if they're going to be perfect for a line (and I love lines, too) with out some sort of help, either in the design or in the signal chain.

Kensai
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Old 29th September 2010, 11:41 PM   #5
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Screamer,

I'll try to make my points in a non-offensive way. Your idea about line array theory is correct in that it will "fill" the stage and project your sound out into the room.

As a studio guy who occasionally does live sound I've found that every band member wants their instrument louder "in the mix" but of course we know that every instrument can't be turned up and up and up and up and... I think there are two reasons for this: 1) most working musicians are deaf. 2) most musicians work next to their instrument or amp so their mix perspective is naturally skewed by their proximity to their instrument/amp. In the above example no musicians have ego problems or rock star complexes or other complications that real situations occasionally have...

Unless you play VERY softly your guitar "line array" would be the most destructive thing possible to a reasonable mix in the house. If I was the HE and we could not agree on a usable stage volume for you I would not let the set start. My multi-year experience at a national theme park night club complex in Orlando (which was the best case example: good talent, nice venue sound systems, etc.) was that EVERY band was too loud in the house BEFORE I even unmuted the console. Cymbals and guitar amps are much louder than most singers and instantly clog the entire mix. I was always armed with drum plexis, guitar amp baffles and often had to put amps in another room and give the performer an extra wedge so I could match their volume requirements but shoot the sound up at the ceiling, not at the audience.

Your comment about the engineer's "idea" about your sound is interesting to me. Good engineers will actually listen to your amp before they decide which mic/s to use, where to place them, etc. I typically found that open backed cabinets sounded very nice in the house with a LDC in front and a 421 or similar in the back, the two mics panned slightly left/right and some careful (2% - 5%of total) use of effects such as a touch of chorus, bit of eq to fix that one note that booms constantly. (This is probably similar to how the original hit record was recorded) If the act was national, I could usually get quite close to the sound of the guitars on the CD. Good engineers have tools that gigging guitarists do not: klark tec parametric eq's, effects from lexicon/TC/Yamaha, tube comps, etc. We can create "your? sound" - (ie the sound of the guitar on the actual recording that was the hit) generally cleaner and better than you can with stomp boxes and amp modelers. We have to do our best to get "your sound" to the audience in spite of the often hissy, boomy, stomp box/modeler distortions (not the good kind) bad cables, etc.

But most importantly, unless its your solo, we have to blend "your sound" with everyone else so that the mix sounds cohesive, similar to the recording (if you are a cover band) and quiet enough so the vocal is the clearly heard. If you want the band to sound incredible, then you and I are on the same team, I'm very serious about that!

Unfortunately, I have met guitarists that clearly act as if they are more important than the lead singer and would prefer to ruin the sound of the band by playing too loud than act as part of the group and contribute to the overall sound. I think that many working guitarists would be shocked at how quiet the stage is at a large concert, shocked that the wall of amps are fakes and the real amp or amps is under the stage or in another room altogether.

Last edited by psemeraro; 29th September 2010 at 11:44 PM.
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Old 30th September 2010, 02:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psemeraro View Post
Screamer,

I'll try to make my points in a non-offensive way. Your idea about line array theory is correct in that it will "fill" the stage and project your sound out into the room.
Psermeraro..... you've preached to the Choir
I'm not offended at all actually quite relieved!.
I agree with every point you have made.

I think that few lead guitarists would go for a line array setup because of many of the reasons you stated. Most bands refuse to use electric drums for all the same reasons. However I am on a constant quest to "fill out" my stage by creating a "bubble" onstage where my band sound is balanced and projects out from there via the PA. The way I would personally use a line array guitar cab would be across stage not facing the audience for gigs with a full PA, and cornered for gigs with a vocal only pa. Then again I play rhythm not lead. Whether I am playing drums or guitar (I always sing), I want at least the bass/drums/r guitar/and sequences balanced on the stage itself without the use of monitors, first.
A standard cab would have to be much louder for me to hear it center stage, and probably kill the bass player, or the audience. The sweet spot would also be an issue. Since I want to accurately "nestle" around the bass/drums and vocals but under the vocals, and accurate sound is desirable.
I'm a little nuts but it would seem some big names are using the Bose L1's with modelers hiding between fake guitar cabs. Jennifer Batten is the first one I can think of offhand.
It's a niche thing...

Nice to meet someone else who listens to the rig first. I'm lovin that Sennheiser 409 a WHOLE lot. I find I can run it flat most of the time placed just slightly off center cone and it translates in the most awesome manner.

Just for fun: Personal Band stage gear:
Custom D4 electronic drumkit (looks real) w Tsumani 2kw amp, 2 12"w2" cabs, 2 15"w2"cabs.
Modeling rig 2x gnx3000 into AB110a and Bag end 15d coax driver in custom cabinet (angles up)
Might be replaced by line array box w 2x10 sub.
Ampeg B2r and sansamp bass di, 1x410 on stand.
3 12"coax monitors
2 8x2 line array side fill monitors.
2 Vocal400
1 TC Harmony G
Sennheiser 835 and 845 mics.
Alternate guitar rig, Modded TGraxx, carvin t100, BFMx series dual celestion cab. (Selling this stuff).

Last edited by screamersusa; 30th September 2010 at 02:21 PM. Reason: additional info.
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